So many people these days are returning to cycling to get around, and I’m considering it myself. It’s surely one of the quickest, and most satisfying ways of greening up your lifestyle, and it’s healthy, too. With constant health warnings about obesity (and Christmas coming up), it’s an attractive proposition.
Each week, someone seems to come out with a beautiful bicycle, but the price tags are the big problem. Now, though, architect Andrew Maynard has come up with an ingenious and stylish solution. His OLC – that’s “One Less Car” – bike is designed to sell for under $35 – yes, that’s LESS THAN 35 US DOLLARS!!!
This plywood bicycle is perfectly conceived for the mass market. Not only are the materials plentiful and cheap, more importantly they are all either recyclable or recycled. The assembly process is also economical, and many of the parts are glued together, making it very strong compared to other bikes at the cheap end of the market. It’s a sensible, no-frills design, with just two gears, but everything is there for you to get on and ride immediately. There are also stylish and practical features, like having the chain, brakes, cogs and lights concealed within the ply frame. This not only keeps the look sleek and simple, and means you won’t snag your trouser on the chain.
From the website, it doesn’t look to me as though Maynard has a distributor in place yet, but he has a vision of retailers like Ikea taking the bikes. I hope they do. I’d definitely get one. At the price, it’s within the reach of many more people than most new bikes are, and that’s got to be good for the planet, too. By the way, “Ply-cycle” and “Plike” are my ideas – commission/royalties anyone?(!)