Bamboo has been an important resource for literally thousands of years, and it’s been put to use in a surprisingly large number of applications. We’ve seen it in homes, boats, carpets, furniture, pipes, flooring, and musical instruments. We can eat it, use it for medicine, and, of course, turn it to durable, soft thread that we can use in bedding and clothing.
Despite everything we’ve used it for in the past, we keep finding new and effective ways to use this environmentally friendly resource. Some of the following are recent developments, some have been around a while and people just weren’t aware that it was possible to use bamboo this way.
So where else will you find bamboo? Have you heard about these applications?
In most discussions about high-end bicycles, you’re going to hear a lot of talk about how things like titanium and carbon fiber are changing the market. However, a lot of important strides are being made with a material that is far more common and renewable.
Bamboo is actually starting to make in-roads in the high-end cycling market as a viable performance frame material. Sure, it’s still kind of in the “novelty” phase right now, but consider:
Bamboo has a hollow structure and the fiber alignment has a natural high-tensile flexural strength and rigidity. (That’s a lot of big words that basically means it has a great ability to resist deforming under a large load). The fibers are all longitudinal and are integrated with a matrix of lignin – which are even more big words that mean that it is essentially a wooden polymer that acts a whole lot like carbon fiber.
It does have a long way to go, but people are really starting to look at it as more than a novelty.
Have you ever thought of using a bamboo keyboard? How about a calculator? Bamboo is becoming a very popular material for a whole range of tech devices because of its unconventional and non-traditional appearance. Everyone expects chrome and plastic for speakers, phone cases, and USB drives. It can come as something of a surprise to see these items wrapped in something with a distinctive wood grain.
Technically, bamboo has been used for fishing rods for centuries, so it isn’t exactly a new or unexpected use. What is a little unexpected is how it is making a comeback in the modern industry. With all the new materials that have been available for fishing rods over the last several decades, the thought of using one made of bamboo may seem a little quaint. But people are realizing that this isn’t the case.
These new fishing rods are hand crafted to provide a better experience, and the bonus is that the natural qualities of bamboo mean that it’s easy to feel every tug and vibration on the line.
Deodorizers and Purifiers
Bamboo charcoal is pretty much made just like any other charcoal on the market, and just like almost any other charcoal on the market it can be used to purify water and eliminate a lot of organic impurities and smells. (Or, you know, you can use it as a fuel to cook something, too.) Bamboo has natural absorption properties, and that is highlighted when it is used as a deodorizer or purifier.
Biking not your thing? Prefer a leisurely ride down the sidewalk? How about a longboard made from bamboo? The same properties that make this a good material for a bicycle frame make it an excellent material for a longboard. This provides a nice, smooth ride that reacts to your own movements while providing the rigidity and durability you need for the long ride.
Whether you’re riding, fishing, skating, or… purifying, you can find some pretty incredible bamboo products in some fairly unexpected places.