Wooden Bikes & Golden Moments
In my day I've interviewed incredibly talented woodworkers, ridden amazing bikes and met wildly imaginative inventors—but I've never seen all three of these come together in such a neat package as last June in Tanzania.
While troubleshooting the water system in Mwatasi—a village in the highlands region of the country—we encountered these five young gentlemen with their latest creation: A wooden three wheel bike. It may not look like much but look closer. For here you will discover resourcefulness, cooperation, imagination, an understanding of physics and geometry and an overwhelming sense of pride.
As woodworkers we can bemoan not having the space or finances for the latest high tech tool. As bikers we can complain about the potholes and narrow roads we need to navigate. As parents we may even gripe about the lack of educational opportunities for our kids. Whenever I start whining, I look at this photo and recalibrate my brain.
Wooden bikes are more popular around the world than you might think. Below is a photo of bikes ridden in the Banaue region of the Phillipines (note the rear braking system!)
To see other ingenious bikes, visit cool wood bikes
Woodworking FAQ by Spike Carlsen now available. For more information visit