Bamboobee DIY Bamboo Bike Frame
I think that most of us would love to be able to build our own bike frame, even if it was a simple hardtail solely for getting around on, but the thought of cutting steel tubes, welding them together and doing all of the work can seem pretty overwhelming. Better to leave it to the skilled pros who can explain MIG welding or a miter cut in their sleep. Wood, on the other hand, is a much easier material to work with and, when it comes to building a frame out of plants, bamboo is the material of choice. Bamboo frames aren't a new thing - they've been around since the early 1900s - but Bamboobee is doing it a bit different: they'll mail you a DIY bamboo frame kit that you can assemble on your own. The kits come in small, medium and large sizes, and you can add things like a basket or fenders, obviously both made of wood. The kit sells for $179 USD on the company's website, which seems like a reasonable price for the experience, although you'll need to factor in the cost of international shipping depending on where you live.
The kit includes almost everything that you'll need to get the job done: all of the bamboo tubes, a set of stainless steel dropouts and a threaded aluminum tube for the bottom bracket, an aluminum seat tube, and even a set of bamboo cable guides. Twenty five meters of hemp fiber are used to join the tubes, and you'll also get a file to smooth the joints between the tubes before you join them. What you won't see in the box, however, is the required epoxy to bond the wood together. For that you'll have to head down to your local hardware store. The most interesting thing in the box has to be the one-time use frame jig that helps you get everything lined up correctly.
Bamboobee's DIY frame kit probably isn't something that you'd want to take out to the jumps, but it looks like it'd do just fine as a "get around" bike that's very different than other things out there. More importantly, the experience of building your own bamboo bike would be pretty damn cool.Industry Nine's Hidden Tool Kit
I don't like backpacks and I don't like stuffing my pockets full of stuff, so the more things I can attach to my bike the better. Industry Nine obviously thinks the same. Their Matchstix axle and tool system lets you carry most of the required trail-side tools inside
of their front or rear axles, meaning that they're out of sight but also there when you need them. No more making sure that you grabbed your trusty multi-tool and then trying to find a place for it in what could already be cramped quarters if you're heading out for a big lap, and Industry Nine says that the total system weight for a front and rear Matchstix axle setup (with the tools in one axle
) actually weighs twenty grams less than two standard Maxles.
The axle's handle doubles as the handle for the built-in chain tool and it's also home to a spoke wrench, while the tool bits are stored in a clear rubber tube that runs down the center of the axle. There's holes in the tube that correspond to each tool bit and you access them by bending the tube and pushing the bit out. The bit then fits into the tool handle in order to provide the required leverage. All of the usual hex bits are included, as well as a T25 torx tool, and there's even a spot where a 10 or 11-speed quick link can be stored. Matchstix axles will be available by November, with options to fit both Boost and standard axles for FOX and RockShox forks ($55 USD
), as well as Boost and 142mm rear ends ($65 USD
), and the tool kit to fit inside will be sold separately for $95 USD.