Renovo bike porn

Thank you to Ken Wheeler for the loaner of his Renovo “Elwood” commuter bike. (and as usual, click through on the below images for originals)

 

 

Renovo seat cluster

 

 

Ken is the mad genius behind Renovo Hardwood Bicycles. If you ever want to feel like a rock star, ride one of these to the farmer’s market. Everybody pops out their phones to take a photo of you on the bike. It’s an amazing conversation starter as well.

 

 

Renovo head tube detail

 

 

Probably the most common question I had while riding this bike: “Is that painted carbon fiber?” Several people apparently see a Renovo bike and believe it’s a carbon fiber frame with some fancy graphics printed on it. The frame is an engineered wood laminate. Metal sleeves handle bearing races in the head tube and bottom bracket. Another metal sleeve in the upper seat tube supports the seat post clamp.

The second most common question: “Is that solid?” Renovo manufactures a hollow, monocoque wooden frame using computer controlled woodworking machinery.

 

 

Renovo BB detail

 

 

I shot these photos immediately after riding the 12 miles from 4th & King in San Francisco, around the Embarcadero, through crushing crowds watching the Fleet Week air show from Fisherman’s Wharf to Crissy Field, across the Golden Gate Bridge, through Fort Baker and into Sausalito. If you look closely you can see dirt and sweat on the frame, but it’s okay — the bike is beautiful but it’s not just a showpiece — Renovo bikes are meant to be used. A little furniture polish makes the bike look good as new.

You can see these bikes in the San Francisco Bay Area at the Renovo showroom at 1200 Bridgeway in Sausalito, CA. It’s about a half mile walk from the Sausalito ferry terminal to Renovo, a block short of Tony Tom’s Bicycle Odyssey. Renovo Bikes is also a happening place on the weekends.


Renovo store front

7 Comments

  • Andy
    October 11, 2011 - 10:49 am | Permalink

    I saw some Renovo bikes at the RAAM this year. At first I thought they were just painted carbon bikes. I didn’t get a chance to hop on one though.

  • October 11, 2011 - 11:50 am | Permalink

    Ken told me one of the RAAM racers used a Renovo.

    Oh, and here’s something on the web on how that went –> http://www.rideforyourlives.com/2011/07/how-did-we-manage-that/

  • Andy
    October 11, 2011 - 12:00 pm | Permalink

    I think I saw 4 there, though maybe that was 2 people with a few bikes each. I let one Renovo rider borrow my cell phone, when they arrived at the time station and had absolutely no idea where their support crew was, so they just kept riding. Oh the joys of RAAM

  • October 12, 2011 - 6:49 pm | Permalink

    tis a thing a beauty… now if they only made a recumbent :)

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  • Callmegandhi
    January 19, 2012 - 5:47 pm | Permalink

    I rode one of these in their showroom in Saucilito Ca. I can tell you that they are every bit as beautiful as the pictures would indicate! The ride is unbelievably smooth! I used to race twenty years ago, and wished I never stopped riding when I jumped on this bike. I will be buying one of these in the near future!

  • Anonymous
    April 12, 2013 - 8:20 am | Permalink

    Happy to hear everyone loves the Renovo Bike, I ordered mine June 13, 2012, paid $1,500.00 up front. The balance of $3,024.00 was paid November 27, 2012. Renovo has set and missed multiple ship dates the last being April 4th, 2013. As of now I haven’t any idea of when or if I will receive my frame. Don Duncan

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