Painter gives bicycle frames the woodgrain look
New Zealand's Rob Pollock hand-paints clients' bicycle frames with a faux woodgrain finish
Whether it's the Renovo/Audi duo lineup, the just-announced Lagamorph, or one of the various bamboo creations, wooden-framed bikes (or in the case of bamboo, "wooden"-framed) are becoming more and more popular. While this is partly because of the ride characteristics and eco-friendliness of sustainably-harvested wood, let's be honest - it's mostly because they look nice. Unfortunately, they also tend to be pricey, with a single complete bike costing several thousand dollars. Well, if it's just the aesthetic of wood that you want, now you have an alternative ... New Zealand's Rob Pollock will give your frame a hand-painted woodgrain finish, for just US$1,500.
Rob has worked in automobile panel painting and repairing for over 40 years, and in that time applied faux wood finishes to numerous cars. A few years ago, his son Aaron suggested that he try woodgraining a bike. The successful result sparked the genesis of his current business, Rob's Woodgrain Bike Frames.
In a typical scenario, the process starts with Pollock receiving a frame and fork from a customer. He then strips off the old paint, and sprays on a light-colored base coat. Using a handheld brush, he then overlays the actual one-of-a-kind woodgrain pattern in a darker color. That is then covered with a tinted clear coat, along with a protective epoxy coating. It usually takes between seven and 10 days for him to do one frame.
The video below shows how Rob goes about his craft.
About the Author
An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.
All articles by Ben Coxworth
\"They look nice\"? No, thanks. I lived through the fake woodgrain era of the 1970s, not to mention the heyday of wood paneling in the 60s and 70s. I prefer simpler, cleaner looks nowadays.
Cool art. Love it!
Not bad, I tend to agree with Gadgeteer though. How about etching bike frames? Fitz at Forteress Galvanic Arts in Oakland, CA did a nice one: http://bit.ly/9dExEo
Ever heard of 3M Di Noc - comes in anything frm carbon fibre to wood grain to a whole heap of choices - if you want a bike that looks like marble, wood etc - just stick some film onto it.
I don't like the look of fake wood grain, its really bad taste IMO
a few commented that they thought that the 2500$ lagamorph wood bicycle frame was to expensive. how about supplying your own expensive frame and pay half that for at fake wood paintjob!? that's plain nuts in my book
I once saw Chip Foose make imitated wood grain with a rich burning gas torch, it only took a few minutes to make the effect on a large surface, not a week..
Over 160,000 people receive our email newsletter
See the stories that matter in your inbox every morning