Exclusive! Matt Clark Design Plastic Bike IV-1 Prototype

Today I met with Matt Clark, he is a young industrial designer from Southern California. He showed me his bicycle creation, the IV-1 (for Innervision 1) :

Here is the description of this unique bike:

This bicycle prototype is aimed at improving and solving multiple issues involved in production. Particular attention was paid to maximize the potential utilization of automated processes and more cost efficient materials (IE: plastics).

The bicycle consists entirely of reinforced and unreinforced recyclable polypropylene. The patent-pending bicycle features a two component
frame: the plastic INNERFRAME and the plastic outer structure, both (in this iteration) dual components sets. Ideally, the material would be sourced from recycled plastic sources (IE: previously used consumer products such as bottles, containers, etc) to reduce environmental impact and to reduce material costs.

The INNERFRAME, which gives the bicycle it’s rigidity, is most easily described as an innovative internal spaceframe-like structure that features triangulation and molded “beams” to increase it’s strength and strategically distribute weight. Additionally, this prototype, utilizes reinforced polypropylene for the inner chainstays. Recycle-ability, a significant objective, was met by utilizing polypropylene throughout the entire frame structure to ensure it is fully recyclable.

The process of assembly using mostly automated processes would streamline bicycle production by providing pre-molded halves that could joined using many different options (For example, but not limited to: linear vibration or hot air welding). These processes could be accomplished without the need to notch and individually weld each tube together, align the frame, and also eliminates the heat treatments required for aluminum frames. This reduces the cost of production by reducing labor intensive processes while simultaneously utilizing a more affordable material.

Another objective was to make the bicycle even more customizable to further increase enthusiasm. This is an age in product design that emphasizes individuality and customization. Similar to the way people customize a skateboard or surfboard; this new bicycle provides a blank canvas to the rider.

One look at this bicycle and you may think that this thing is heavy as heck, not so. When I lifted the IV-1, I was surprised how light it was. So now, you may be thinking, is this thing rideable? Check it out:

Matt’s vision is to mass produce this bike as cheaply as possible using recycled materials. He presented the bicycle to “prominent members of the educational and design community of Pasadena California. Attendees at the meeting included staff members of the Pasadena Public Libraries, Art Center College of Design, JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratories) and California Institute of Technology” which were very excited about his project.

I want to thank Matt Clark for giving BikeCommuters.com this exclusive test ride and taking his time to answer all my questions. If you want to contact Matt to ask additional questions, or if you happen to be a bike company that may be interested in evolving his idea and bringing it to the masses, email him at matthewclarkdesign@yahoo.com

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