There has been coverage of bamboo bicycles and cars that feature hard wood as part of the design plan. These vehicles are great because they are light weight – a factor that is very important especially in electric cars. As electric cars begin to blossom light weight bamboo just might be the car building material of the future.
Greg ‘Gadget’ Abbott started building eclectic kit cars using fiber glass. However in place of fiberglass why not use bamboo? Abbott says that it is a huge misconception that bamboo and similar vegetable resin is weaker that other materials. Because bamboo does not absorb the resin, Abbott says, “you can build thicker composites … the strength-to-width ratio is somewhere between carbon fiber and fiberglass.”
Not only is bamboo considered a “green material” due to the plants rapid re-growth weight, but bamboo is an ultra light material and surprisingly strong. This combination of strength and light weight makes bamboo perfect for electric cars by compensating for the by the up to 200 pounds of weight added to the car by the heavy battery packs.
Could we see cars made out of bamboo in the future? Well, we already are. Rinspeed has made a concept car that has a bamboo interior. Granted, the body of the car is metal, however, the interior of the vehicle is bamboo. The bamboo interior of the Rinspeed concept car does make the car a bit lighter and undoubtedly pushes the envelope of creation for unique thinkers and builders like Greg ‘Gadget’ Abbott.
Andrew Meggison was born in the state of Maine and educated in Massachusetts. Andrew earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Government and International Relations from Clark University and a Master’s Degree in Political Science from Northeastern University. Being an Eagle Scout, Andrew has a passion for all things environmental. In his free time Andrew enjoys writing, exploring the great outdoors, a good film, and a creative cocktail.