Recycled Cardboard Bicycle Costs $9 To Make

By Mo Mozuch on July 27, 2012 12:19 PM EDT

photo:us.shalomlife.com
photo:us.shalomlife.com

When Giora Kariv told his fellow engineers he wanted to make a bicycle out of recycled cardboard they told him it was impossible.  He was inspired by a man who made canoes out of recycled cardboard. To create the bike he puts the cardboard through a specific process. He folds the cardboard repeatedly to add sturdiness. His bike, called the Izhar Cardboard Bike, can support 300 pounds. He also treats the cardboard with a water-proofing chemical solution that makes it water resistant and increases the durability. The bike is not designed to be ridden during rainfall, however.

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Gafni, an Israeli citizen, believes his bike is attractive to cyclists who live in areas where bike theft is common, such as Tel Aviv. Because his bike costs only $9 to make, he estimates that it could retail for around $60-$90. However, he has not announced any plans to start commercial manufacturing the bike soon. Gafni said he created the bike simply for the challenge.

"I really love bicycles, and when I worked in the United States I inquired in California to see if anyone has already thought of the concept of a cardboard bicycle. To my delight, I only discovered similar concepts based on bamboo. But when I started asking engineers about the possibility of producing a cardboard bicycle, I was sent away and told that the realization of my idea is impossible," Gafni told Newsgeek. "One day I was watching a documentary about the production of the first jumbo jet - and an engineer on the team had said that when everyone tells him that what he is doing is impossible - it makes it even clearer to him that he is progressing in the right direction. That saying motivated me to experiment with different materials on cardboard, to find what produces the desired strength and durability."

 The bicycle is being hailed as breakthrough in the field of green transportation. Gafni hopes his bicycle will gain attraction as a city vehicle with addition of an electric motor, which can be easily removed when the bicycle is parked.

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