The Swedish start-up company Norrcycle specialises in the production of sustainable bicycles made of laminated wood. The production of Norrcycle bikes with FUSE UD tape reinforcement is in development to create even lighter and stiffer frame constructions from European renewable raw materials. The start of production is planned for autumn 2022.
For the production of the Norrcycle frame sets, wood layers of light domestic wood are pressed in veneer layers by selectively adding high-strength FUSE UD natural fibre (FLX or HMP) to form a fibre-optimised laminated wood structure. The combination of very high strength of the unidirectional FUSE fibres with the low density of the wood layers is ideally suited to use the properties that can be achieved with them in such a targeted way to build lightweight and high-strength wheels that, in addition to a high level of comfort, also demonstrate convincing sustainability potential.
Besides the sustainability benefits, the laminated natural fibres also offer technological processing advantages compared to fibreglass or carbon fibre due to significantly better processing options with machining tools (e.g. milling machine and saw) as well as the possible use of a laser cutter. Significantly less harmful and visible dust is produced and the possible processing temperature of the FUSE fibre is comparable to standard wood.
In cooperation between Norrcycle and FUSE, tests are being carried out to see how FUSE HMP can replace wood veneers, which are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain, or supplement them in a technically sensible way. This will help improve the stability and rigidity of the bicycles produced in Germany and enable improvement of sustainability aspects.