The explanation I found for the concept behind this wooden bike is a bit convoluted: “A balance bicycle that can be transformed into a rocking horse. The cycles are being folded into the wooden body of the bicycle and are used as breaks (brakes) which prevent from the child to turn over while swaying.” Huh? I assumed the bike’s coolness got lost in translation…
When I first came across it’s prototype on the Haatar website, I discovered that the site’s first language is Hebrew, and the design school is located in Jerusalem. The designer, Amir Zobel, has only recently added Nad-Ofan, or ‘rocking cycle’, to the Students of Industrial Design, Bezalel gallery. His concepts also include an ‘Altitude’ closet (with a built-in step ladder to reach the top compartment) and a modernized soap box, “for opinions expressions”. Still, for obvious reasons, my favorite is the Nad-Ofan.
Twenty-five year old Amir designed this bike for his inner child. It was “mostly inspired by my memories of being a kid. A lovely nephew of a friend of mine was the subject of the experiments.”
The only question is: How can we green this bike? First off, let’s use bamboo plywood for the folded circular disk that also serves as the base of the rocker. The seat and handle grips? Easy. Soybean foam. The tires could be molded from sustainable rubber sources. And the frame and wheel components are fashioned from either recycled aluminum or reusable steel.
The original prototype is locked away in Amir’s attic as, “It’s not 100 percent working and safe, so I’d prefer to hide it from curious children.” Amir is currently seeking a manufacturer to produce his Nad-Ofan push bike, and so far he has a sparse waiting list of one – my son took one look at the prototype and declared, “I want this!”
Contact Amir Zobel: truthdefined[at]gmail[dot]com