Why Bamboo?

There’s hundreds of great reasons to use bamboo as a building material, but the main one is that it grows!

Renewable

It’s one of the world’s fastest growing renewable resources.  Giant species like Moso (Phyllostachys pubescens) can grow up to 1.2 metres in 24 hours!

Local

It also grows almost anywhere (even here in chilly Victoria) and can thus be sourced locally, saving those precious carbon miles.

Strong

Bamboo has uni-directional fibres making it very strong in tensile and compressive forces. It’s also light, hollow and stiff enough to withstand the rigors of bike riding, whilst being supple enough to provide shock dampening for a smooth ride.

Here’s a comparison of the mechanical properties of natural bamboo with other materials (Source: Bamboo The Gift of the Gods by Oscar Hidalgo – Lopez)

Comparison of the mechanical properties of natural bamboo with other materials
Material Density (g cm 3) Tensile strength (MPa) Specific tensile strength (N mg-1) Tensile modulus (GPa) Specific tensile modulus (kN mg-1) Compression Strength (MPa) Specific Compression Strength (N mg-1)
Wood 0.46 104 226 10 22 7 80
Concrete 2.5 4 2 48 19 69 28
Glass 2.5 50 20 69 28 50 20
Aluminium 2.7 247 88 69 25
Cast iron 7.8 138 18 207 26 120 15
Steel (0.06% C) 7.9 4.59 58 203 26 800 101
Polyester 1.8 276 153 18 10 270 150
Epoxy 1.8 1100 611 45 25 400 222
Bamboo 0.66 206 312 20 31 79 120

Easy to work with

Bamboo can be easily cut, mitred, sanded, painted and even bent with simple hand tools.

Comments are closed.