Skip to main content

Boo Bicycles bind aluminium & bamboo for the ultimate ride

The Aluboo Bicycle
The Aluboo Bicycle
Aluminium is one of the most eco-friendly metals in the world used in a multitude of applications – transportation vehicles being one of them. They are already being heavily applied in bikes, cars, trains and aeroplanes among other means of commuting. But have you heard about bicycles being made with bamboo? A company named ‘Boo Bicycles’ combines the best of both aluminium and bamboo – two of the most sustainable materials used for building and construction – to create bicycles for high-end biking enthusiasts, racers and urban commuters. Why and how are they doing that? Let’s find out!

Boo Bicycles was a venture founded in the summer of 2012 by James Wolf, Nick Frey, and Drew Haugen on Kickstarter. With a goal of raising $50,000 as base capital through crowd-funding, they eventually collected more than double their target which got things rolling for this innovative start-up! 

Why use bamboo out of all things?

To begin with, it is not just any ordinary bamboo. According to “Boo Master Craftsman" James Wolf, the bamboo species they use is called the Tam Vong bamboo. Tam Vong grows without fertilizers or pesticides. It does not contribute to soil depletion or erosion. All it needs to grow is the sun, water, and air. James, who also cultivates this special species with his team in Colorado, USA, credits the unique properties of this particular bamboo used in making high-performance machines.

VIDEO: Meet the Tam Vong -
  • The Tam Vong is one of the strongest bamboo species in the world out of the 2000+ existing ones.
  • Their origin can be traced to the unique climate of Vietnam.
  • Tam Vong has an exceptionally high fibre density compared to other bamboos. This means it is stronger by weight than steel! It is also as stiff as carbon fibre in bending. Its amazing strength and rigidity are due to thousands of stiff longitudinal fibres in each tube of the bamboo.
  • Tam Wong was also considered as the fibres in each tube are surrounded by an insulating material called lignin that damps vibration.
Aluboo Bicycle Frame
Aluboo Bicycle Frame
So, what is the project Aluboo all about?

The aluminium is as important as the bamboo in these bikes. Project Aluboo combines the bamboo with aircraft-grade aluminium to create lightweight and high-performance bicycles which can deeply reduce the vibrations and harsh ride of any terrain.

Aluboo U frame
Aluboo U frame
  • The Aluboo series bikes are all custom made by hand. It takes about 40 to 50 hours to create the frame from a combination of bamboo and aluminium.
  • Tube-to-tube construction technique is used in fitting the two materials.
  • The bamboo is then bound with unidirectional carbon fibre.
  • Finally, the aluminium lugs are hand-welded and polished before becoming road-ready.
Cyclist with the Boo bike
Cyclist with the Boo bike
We know what you are thinking. These bikes must come at a steep price. Indeed, they are. The Aluboo Commuter costs around $2,200, but that’s a cost one has to pay for highly personalised bikes with premium materials for the ultimate riding experience.

Aluminium combined with Tam Vong delivers a uniquely innovative solution to something as mundane as commuting. Also, it is a head-turner all the way through!

Aluboo - the perfect bicycle combining aluminium and bamboo
Aluboo - the perfect bicycle combining aluminium and bamboo


Post a comment

Most read articles

The choice is clear - Aluminium body for high end smartphones

A lot of phone companies are trying to build slim and sturdy phones for the ever growing market of steroid enhanced hardware capabilities. With phone manufacturers stuffing more RAM and precision cameras in the modern phones, the weight and robustness of the frames becomes all the more important. Today, some manufactures prefer a fiber body to reduce the overall weight in comparison to metal bodies. However, there’s something which still draws a larger advocacy of using aluminium bodies instead of a plastic or fiber.

In 2007, Apple CEO Steve Jobs penned an open letter highlighting changes to the company's environmental policy in hopes of achieving "a greener Apple." In the letter, Jobs specifically noted the Mac maker's adoption of aircraft-grade aluminum in order to improve recycling uptake. Apart from the cost reduction implications, Apple is strongly in favor of aluminium usage in all its products for improving its year on year recycling capabilities with more tha…

Nespresso gives a Second Life to its signature aluminum coffee capsule

“Science may never come up with a better office communication system than a coffee break” – Earl Wilson

A cup of coffee is a moment of pleasure. Everyone loves a good cup of coffee. Some even go to the extent of brewing that perfect cup of coffee for themselves because they know coffee taken in any other configuration might just ruin their happiness. And those who do, know about Nespresso’s Grand Crus beverages.
Nestlé’s Nespresso S.A. is an operating unit of the Nestle group in Switzerland. Nespresso machines brewespresso coffee fromcoffee capsules orpods. These coffee pods are a type ofsingle-usecontainer of ground coffee beans in a particular proportion, sometimes with added flavorings. Asingle-serve coffee containeris a method for coffee brewing that prepares only enough coffee for a single portion. There are multiple configurations of coffee in these Nespresso pods or capsules catering to different taste buds. The pods are made from paper and individually sealed in separate bags. I…

Lamborghini's raging Super SUV URUS - a balance of power and weight

This is unlike any Lamborghini automobile ever! An SUV from the company who produces supercars made from the blood of raging bulls? Of course, they are calling it the world’s first Super Sports Utility Vehicle – a fact we can’t deny given the super specs on the automobile and Lamborghini’s signature design. Will this animal from Lamborghini’s bullpen deliver on the brand’s promise? Let’s find out!

From the outside, the vehicle sports the signature of Lamborghini’s extreme design yet finds a way to make it less aggressive for the owners who just want to buy milk on a cold Monday morning from the nearest market. However, on the inside, it’s still a beast. The front hood houses the 4 litre V8 twin-turbo engine with 650 HP and 850 Nm of torque. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h is achieved in just 3.6 seconds and the top speed is a staggering 305 km/h! Braking is no less impressive: the Urus decelerates from 100 km/h to 0 in 33.7 meters. The vehicle is 4-wheel steering with carbon-ceramic brake…

‘Red Mud’ in alumina production and how is it handled

Alumina production employs the Bayer’s process which leaves behind a residue known as Red Mud. If the alumina extraction is done through any other process then the residue left behind is known as White Mud or Bellite. Over 95% of the alumina manufactured globally is derived from bauxite by the Bayer process.
For more on the Bayer’s Process:
Over 90% of the alumina produced in the world is used to manufacture aluminium metal. This is termed as metallurgical or smelter grade alumina (SGA). The rest is termed non-metallurgical grade alumina (NMGA). Red mud is composed of a mixture of metallic oxides. The bauxite filtrate primarily consists of iron oxides, silicon oxide, titanium oxide and un-dissolved alumina together with a wide range of other oxides. This depends upon the place of extracted bauxite. The iron oxides, which comprise up to 60% of the mass of the sludge impart the red colour. The mud is highly basic with a pH ranging from 10 to 13.

Aluminium in guitars – It's all music to our ears

Think of a guitar and the classic wooden version comes to mind. There are hundreds of types and they come in all shapes and sizes. Some passionate players even go for custom made guitars just to suit their movements and taste. The simple guitar is still evolving with newer uses of the instruments in concerts and other forms of music. The use of wood in the body and the neck of a guitar is not going to cease in a long time. However, the use of other selected materials by modern guitar manufacturers has significantly improved the sound quality and handling of the guitars.
“Manufacturers were making custom guitars from solid billeted aluminum. I was still in graduate school and couldn’t afford such instruments. So I decided to make a competitively priced guitar. Instead of wood or plastic, I opted to use 0.080-in. aircraft-grade aluminum sheet metal because of its quality and durability,” says the then-future CEO of Normandy Guitars.

The use of Aluminum in crafting bodies for guitars has …