A working bicycle made of wood

YouTuber The Q spent 200 hours crafting a rideable bicycle out of wood, the glue that holds it together, and a handful of metal pieces like washers.

Why? I don't know, but it's pretty cool.

(The Awesomer) Read the rest

Stainless steel and red wood Apple watch band

I am quite fond of this $29 Apple watch band. Read the rest

Watch this guy turn wood into an extremely sharp knife

Lignum vitae is an extraordinarily dense and hard wood, so kiwami japan wanted to see if a knife made of the wood could maintain a sharp blade. An interesting and relaxing experiment. Read the rest

Wood that's stronger than steel

Researchers demonstrated a new process that makes wood stronger than steel. According to the University of Maryland mechanical engineers, their novel process could lead to a greener alternative to metal in automobiles, airplanes, or buildings. “This could be a competitor to steel or even titanium alloys, it is so strong and durable," says researcher Liangbing Hu. "It’s also comparable to carbon fiber, but much less expensive.” From the University of Maryland:

The team’s process begins by removing the wood’s lignin, the part of the wood that makes it both rigid and brown in color. Then it is compressed under mild heat, at about 150 F. This causes the cellulose fibers to become very tightly packed. Any defects like holes or knots are crushed together. The treatment process was extended a little further with a coat of paint.

The scientists found that the wood’s fibers are pressed together so tightly that they can form strong hydrogen bonds, like a crowd of people who can’t budge – who are also holding hands. The compression makes the wood five times thinner than its original size.

The team tested their new wood material and natural wood by shooting bullet-like projectiles at it. The projectile blew straight through the natural wood. The fully treated wood stopped the projectile partway through.

More: "Crushed wood is stronger than steel" (Nature)

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Mesmerizing supercut of strange woodsplitting contraptions

From the ingenious to the bizarre, there's no shortage of gadgets, machines, and homemade gew-gaws created to make cutting and splitting wood easier. Read the rest

Watch this test of a $1,400 wooden keyboard vs. a $40 one

A tricked out Japanese wooden keyboard goes for $1400. Cheap ones are just $40. Linus tests if it's worth the additional money.

Spoilers: it's not worth it. He says, "I can't be-leaf how much I paid for this thing. I feel like a total sap."

$1,400 Wooden Keyboard vs. a $40 one (YouTube / Linus Tech Tips) Read the rest

Plywood manufacturing history surprisingly interesting

London's Victoria and Albert Museum recently posted a 7-minute assembly of footage from plywood manufacturing "then and now." The result, aided by some nice sleazy electronica, is a mesmerizing adventure in composite laminates. Read the rest

Chainsaw sculptor creates spectacular wooden dragon benches

When he's not winning speedcarving contests with his chainsaw, Estonian sculptor Igor Loskutow crafts wood into outsize sculptures and furniture, like these remarkable dragon benches. Read the rest

This five-year-old kid is a log-splitting maniac

Salem Barker's kid isn't afraid of a little hard work. At five, he already knows how to run the hydraulic logsplitter they rigged up at their farm. Read the rest

Watch a mesmerizing stop-motion video using wood grain

"WoodSwimmer" is a single from Bedtimes with a remarkable video by Brett Foxwell. In it, Foxwell laboriously sanded and sliced thin pieces of wood from large logs to create hypnotic patterns from the wood grain. Read the rest

LED log light

If you're a fan of both logs and lights, perhaps a log light would brighten your life. Owen Duggan crafts these beauties in western France. Read the rest

Gorgeous and expensive wooden wireless keyboards, touchpads and mini-speakers

Oree makes wooden computer peripherals, and not just the usual keyboard and iPhone cases: also offered are matching touchpads (with optional numpad engraving) and "pebbles"--a gadget that combines a speaker and a wireless phone charger. Everything's offered in maple and walnut, with various engraving options.

The keyboard alone isn't unreasonable at $150, but a set seems terribly expensive: you're looking at $500 shipped! Read the rest

New show of Scott Albrecht's exquisite deconstructed typographical art opening in L.A.

My friend Scott Albrecht, a Brooklyn-based artist and designer who creates fantastic typographical illustrations and hand-crafted, puzzle-like wood sculptures, has a show of remarkable new works opening on Saturday (11/19) at Shepard Fairey's Subliminal Projects gallery in Los Angeles.

"(Scott's) abstraction and deconstruction of type forms combined with his sophisticated color theory and surface treatments yield artworks that are immediate, yet command a deeper and closer look," Shepard says.

The exhibition, titled "New Translations," runs until January 7. Below is a preview of the show. Valley Cruise Press has also published a hardcover, full color book of Scott's work, available here. From the gallery:

The works are largely based in typography but have their legibility masked in a variety of techniques; bold color-blocking, varying depths, non-uniform grids, or a lack of spacing between words. This manipulation can make the work appear pattern-based at first glance; however, on further evaluation the viewer discovers there is no repetition. While his works are constructed from a literary idea, Albrecht's approach is mainly visual. In a series of new pieces for the exhibit, this process is underscored when he overlays two words on top of one another, and in some instances reverses the order of the characters. The end result renders the characters illegible with the exception of small moments or clues from the two words, visually presenting two ideas that are at odds with each other, hindering any idea from manifesting.

Albrecht's woodworks are the result of an extensive process that starts with a hand-rendered drawing and requires hours of precision production work.

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Scientists make transparent wood

Scientists at the University of Maryland, College Park, have developed see-through wood by removing the material that gives wood its yellowish color and then injecting the wood with epoxy to strengthen it.

From CNN:

The "invisible" wood -- as Dr. Liangbing Hu of the University's Department of Material Science and Engineering describes it -- is sturdier than traditional wood, and can be used in place of less environmentally friendly materials, such as plastics.

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Scary robot lumberjack makes deforestation too easy

This deforestation machine slices and plucks trees at their base and then wipes off all the branches and foliage in just a few seconds. (Thanks, Dustin Hosteler!)

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Photo of a $98 stump and a artisanal firewood video go well together

Above: a stump for sale for $98 at Design Republic. Below: a video about an artisanal firewood maker. It doesn't really matter that one is real and which one is a parody.

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Scott Albrecht: Amsterdam show of typographical art and beautiful geometric wood sculptures

My friend Scott Albrecht, a Brooklyn-based artist and designer who creates fantastic typographical illustrations and hand-crafted wood sculptures, has a fantastic new show hanging in Amsterdam's Andenken/Batallion Gallery until July 24. Read the rest

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