Guapa Cycles used Biotex Flax developed by Composites Evolution, a supplier of innovative, sustainable materials to the composites industry, to improve the impact performance of the company’s Urban One bamboo bicycle.
The UK based Guapa Cycles designs and engineers wood composite bicycles by using technology proven to excel in the harsh conditions experienced in surf and snow sports.
Whilst researching alternatives to carbon for use in its bamboo and composite bicycle, the company was introduced to flax, which was interesting due to its performance and processability, as well as the bonus it offered being environmentally-friendly.
Best performing material
“The ability to incorporate a material such as flax into our bike wasn’t a decision forced through the need to find a material that has its environment credentials; rather an educated decision to find the best performing material for our application,” commented Thomas Henry Williams, Co-Founder & Design Engineer at Guapa.
“The natural mechanical properties that the flax and the wood composite provides is, for our application, better than using a material such as carbon; the flexural stiffness provided by the fusing of these two natural materials provided us with the desired strength, flex and ultimate vibrational characteristics. The proximity and environment impact of the product is then extremely closely linked to our brands philosophy of smarter manufacture, building closer to home and nearer to the end consumer.”
Stronger than carbon frame
Guapa describes the ride as stiff yet extremely smooth, vibrationless with no noise, just pure efficient fun. Through European standard testing, the bicycles have been proven to be as strong if not stronger than carbon, aluminium or steel frames, according to the manufacturer. All with a frame weight of just 3.3 kg.
“It’s been great to work with Guapa Cycles and we are really pleased to see that they recognised the outstanding performance of the Biotex materials. We look forward to working with them in the future,” said Brendon Weager, Technical Director at Composites Evolution.