Danso Bamboo Bicycles
Every single Danso Bamboo Bicycle frame is hand made in the community of Kumasi, in Ghana, from locally sourced bamboo and sisal ﬁbre. The frame consists of bamboo tubes fastened with hemp fibers and bio-epoxy resin.
Our production process is precise and professional, rendering each frame beautiful and completely unique. Every frame is carefully crafted and subsequently inspected with great care. Once the frame is made, the bike is then assembled on Prince Edward Island, Canada.
Owning a Danso Bamboo Bike means:
- Your bike is unique and handmade in Ghana
- You will enjoy an unparalleled driving experience because of the natural suspension generated from the bamboo
- Your bike will have a very long life, thanks to the high-quality varnish (read our full warranty policy here)
- Sisal-epoxide resin bonds will give your fram excellent durability
Empowering Communities to Gain Economic Freedom with The Yonso Project
We build our frames together with our partner, The Yonso Project, in Kumasi, Ghana. The Yonso Project distributes proceeds from this venture into educational scholarships and micro-loans to members of the rural communities throughout Ghana. On top of that, more than 30 employees work for the project at a fair compensation. This permanent and fulfilling employment is only a part of The Yonso Project’s contribution to the community. Read more about it here.
At Danso, we believe that the first step to eradicating poverty starts with the community engagement and development.
This is why we exclusively offer bamboo products made by communities in Ghana and promote these products on the international market. It is a small step towards our ultimate goal to provide the poor in rural West African countries the means to gain economic freedom.
How Does Bamboo Compare?
Bamboo is an amazing material with a long history of use for building materials, furniture, and a host of other items in countries all of the world. Our bamboo is particularly strong with a tensile strength higher than steel, and a compression strength higher than concrete. It truly is a great material to make a bicycle frame from. It is also antibacterial and light.
Sisal, which is made from the leaves of the agave plant, has been used to make bags, netting, baskets, clothing, carpets, and rope since pre-history. It is very strong, resistant to salt water, and is 100% biodegradable. Danson Bamboo Bicycles uses sisal to join the bamboo together to make the frame. Small aluminum parts are added to allow our frames to accept standard bicycle parts.
Bamboo has greater tensile strength (resistance to being pulled apart) than Steel and can withstand compression better than concrete.
Bamboo makes a stronger bicycle frame that is lighter than steel, and has very good vibration absorption qualities which give it a smooth ride feel. Steel can be recycled, and old steel can, in theory, be recycled into new bikes. Producing steel emits less carbon than producing aluminum — 1.8 tons of CO2 per ton of steel to 2.2 tons of CO2 per ton of aluminum.
Although similar materials, Bamboo grows naturally, and unlike carbon ﬁbre, its vascular bundles are extremely stiff. Bamboo is signiﬁcantly more durable than carbon ﬁbre. Although slightly heavier, it is nearly impossible for bamboo bicycle frames to break under riding stress (including heavy impact). When carbon ﬁbre fails, it tends to do so suddenly and spectacularly — a carbon ﬁbre bikes can shatter underneath you.
Carbon ﬁbre bikes are made of carbon graphite threads coated with epoxy resins. According to the Duke Report carbon ﬁbre frames use less energy than aluminum, steel, or titanium, but consume the most water at about 2,000 litres of water per kg of bike (aluminum frames use about 1,200 litres). Carbon ﬁbre is hard to recycle, while bamboo is completely bio-degradable.
Titanium bicycles have a good weight-to-strength ratio, durability, and “road feel,” but are quite expensive, and titanium itself is harder to extract and reﬁne than aluminum.
Aluminum is a common bicycle making material, and it is recyclable. But in the Duke Report, researchers found that one aluminum frame required a lot more energy to produce, resulting in much higher carbon emissions, than a carbon ﬁbre model (about 170 kg of carbon dioxide equivalents per kg of bike vs. about 60 kg).
Manufacturers tend to use new aluminum because it can fatigue over time causing structural problems.