He was told by three engineers such a feat would be impossible, but after his wife persuaded him, designer Giora Kariv got to work on a bicycle made out of cardboard that costs just $9 to manufacture.
Kariv got inspired by the man who made a canoe out of cardboard, and combined his own passion for bicycles and recycling to create a functioning cardboard bicycle. It can withstand water, humidity, and is surprisingly strong. As the video above shows, it took quite a while to develop with Kariv working through several generations of the design. The bicycle needed to be strong enough to seat a person of up to 140 kilograms, which at first led to prototypes that were bulky and uncomfortable. But as with most things, the more you work on an idea, the better you become at using the materials to see it to fruition.
Kariv describes folding the cardboard like origami and that the folding process is what makes the cardboard structure so strong. The finished bicycle doesn’t even look like it’s made out of cardboard, with the coating making it resemble plastic.
The production cost of the bicycle is between $9 and $12, and Kariv believes stores could sell them to consumers for around $60 depending on what they wanted to add to the bike over and above the original design. For example, a custom paint job or even an electric engine mod could work.
The cost of the bike means that if it’s stolen, it’s not going to hurt your wallet too much. Plus, if you did decide to have something like an engine added, it’s going to have to be easily removable as it can’t interfere with the core bike structure, so the most expensive part of the bike will be safe from thieves.
Kariv’s bike is a great way to promote recycling, green transportation, and exercise. The low cost also means it’s accessible to more people around the world who don’t have a lot of disposable cash, but would benefit from having a form of transport such as this.
Learn more here https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-cardboard-bike