It only costs Izhar Gafni 9-12 USD to produce this sleek, waterproof and roadworthy cardboard bike. At the behest of his wife (who was tired of Gafni’s talk without action), the Israeli Kibbutznik developed an earth-friendly alternative for urban cyclists that is “so cheap it’s not worth stealing.” Like most innovators, Gafni defied the naysayers who said it’s impossible to make a bicycle out of cardboard in order to realize this creation, though the journey was not without its pitfalls. Check out images taken from Giora Kariv’s six-minute film that demonstrate what a cardboard bike is made of.
Gafni experimented with several prototypes before coming up with the winning design.
Made out of corrugated cardboard sheets, the bicycle can withstand up to 140kg.
In some cases, the cardboard is rolled up to give it strength.
Engineers told Gafni it would be impossible to build a bicycle out of cardboard, but he persevered (at his wife’s behest.)
In Israel, bicycles are regularly stolen. Gafni’s design is so cheap that it’s not worth stealing, he told local media.
Early prototypes looked like delivery boxes on wheels, he said. But the final design, for cardboard, is pretty darn sleek. At least we think so.
This is definitely not a winner!
But this one is.
Although it costs only 9-12 USD in materials, Gafni sells his cardboard bike for USD 60; still, that’s a steal for a simple whip around.
Izhar Gafni: the man who defied the naysayers and followed his dream.
Photography: Uri Ackerman