Programme


The initial decision in October 2011 to proceed with the manufacture of a wooden bike did not really have a specific programme attached to it, as the whole exercise was just seen as an interesting diversion to occupy the group during Andy's recuperation.


It was not until January 2012 that the idea of getting a charity, specifically MNDA, arose so that some cash could be raised. In February 2012 after an interchange of emails the Charity identified that there was a major cycling event taking place in Manchester, namely Manchester Skyride, where literally thousands of cyclists would have the opportunity to pedal the specially closed off streets of the city. This event was scheduled for July 19th, and so suddenly the group found themselves with no bike, no materials, lots of ideas and a deadline for completion so that the bike could be exhibited! Nothing like a bit of pressure to clarify one's thinking.


The first manufacture started in March and the items chosen were the wheels. These were only physically completed by the end of June due to the delay in receipt of the thin plywood. It was things such as the time for coats of varnish to dry that also extended the timings and this had to be allowed for in the programmes for the other components.


More correspondence with the Charity in April revealed that they were hoping we would actually try for the speed record at the Skyride event! The group felt this was just too much of a challenge and advised them accordingly.


A couple of industrious working sessions at Nick's for the whole group in late June and early July saw all the major components come together such that the bike stood on its wheels for the first time on 12 July, leaving only a few days to tidy up loose ends and make suitable display stands etc for the Skyride event.


The bike came in for considerable attention at Skyride, most people being a bit slow to grasp that there was no metal anywhere in its construction. It had been hoped the banner over the display saying "Wood You Believe It?" might give them a clue!



It had always been recognised that after Skyride there would be a couple of months inactivity due to overseas commitments for Jon, and similar issues for Nick and Andy. In the event the next outing for the bike was to be displayed at the MNDA AGM held at a Stanstead Airport hotel in September.




The bike is now having some minor issues addressed while efforts continue towards arranging the actual world Record Attempt early in 2013. Items to be arranged include finding a suitable venue, identifying people capable of timing the event with the required degree of accuracy and last but not least deciding just who will ride it during the attempt!


On this latter point, in view of the success of UK cyclists in the Olympics it would be wonderful to have a recognised cycling hero at least present if not actually riding, so if anyone has any contacts in this respects please feel free to let the group know.