Number Fifty-Four…The Bike with a Bamboo Core

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Number Fifty-Four…

…The bike with a bamboo core!

What does it take for innovation to be possible? Simply, just the intention. You need to want it badly enough to make it possible.

I happened to see this online a long time ago. I am still in awe of it though. People in Ghana find themselves in unfavourable temperatures, with long distances to go, but with limited connectivity. But rather than endure, with some external help, they designed bicycles built with a bamboo frame. They could easily source the other parts, which were standard to regular bikes. This innovation however, helped build a bike at a fraction of the cost of the ones normally available.

And I’ve found that regular bikes these days, corrode easily, and require considerable maintenance. These bamboo bikes however, seem to be easier to maintain. They can also be built for different sizes and for different applications (carrier, etc.). A green, economical idea that addresses so many needs. In times of compulsive and impulsive purchases all over the world, this is just the kind of impressive and refreshing innovation the world needs.

Don’t miss the video at the end.

A standard bike: source

A bike with a carrier and a carrier support frame: source

Image: source

 

You can read more about it here: link

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Stir Up a Hornet’s Nest

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Here’s another product review.

I recently bought the a horn for my bicycle. The Hornit.

Hornit [the company], interestingly, is founded by a lawyer (yeah, cool huh?!) who felt the need for a loud horn while riding to and from work. He tested his first  prototype back in ’07, and it was only in 2011 that he got into it full-time with Hornit.

And what is Hornit? It is the world’s loudest bicycle horn. At a deafening 140 decibel, it does warn the average zombie behind the wheel who is about to drift or cut in front of you while you’re cycling. Or, like the Hornit people mildly puts it, “it gives the cyclist greater control over their safety, rather than passively hoping to be seen.”

I’ve tried it out, and it works. And well. You do feel a lot safer using it,  compared to other bicycle ‘bells’ by leading manufacturers that are barely audible even to the cyclist, let alone a vehicle a short distance away.

The horn itself is louder than the average car horn, so drivers do take notice, and while it might take them a few seconds to realize that a bicycle under 14 kg. sounded that piercing horn, it gives you sufficient space to pass through.

Hornit - 1

It has two sound modes (140 dB & 130 dB) for riding and parking. The sounds themselves aren’t very cool, one sounding like a bird, and the other just a deafening beep. Personally I would have definitely preferred an air-horn kind of sound (the ones used on trains or large trucks). But that said, the Hornit more than delivers on its basic purpose. It’s sleek, unconventional and good to look at, too. The horn button can be placed at a convenient position on the handlebar. The quality of the button’s elastic locking mechanism isn’t too great, but all in all, the Hornit is a great product and a must-have for any cyclist.

[4.75/5] For serving its basic purpose well, for the cool name, for a good speaker design  and ergonomic button.

And if you’re wondering what it sounds like, aufhorchen baby.!

Sleepy Hollow

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Remember that scene in Sleepy Hollow, where the roots of the tree of the dead open up to allow the headless horseman through?

My neighbors have their very own little Sleepy Hollow going on here 🙂