There was a huge increase in bicycles and all biking accessories during the pandemic as people tried to find alternative means of transportation. Now that we’re almost back to whatever normal is, bikers are still a huge segment of the transportation market for a lot of reasons. One of these is that it’s more eco-friendly that cars since it does not use any fuel. But there has also been an interest in making the bicycles themselves even more eco-friendly.
Designer: Frame Cycles
One new product that can make your bike more sustainable is the FR-1 Bike Saddle since it is made from reconstituted cork and grade 5 titanium. It was able to do away with the usual three plastic layers of the bike saddle and replace it with the single piece of cork. What’s more, this cork is able to have all the properties of those plastic layers: structural rigidity, foam comfort, and weather resistance.
According to Frame Cycles, they were able to create the first batch of these cork saddles by using a firm grade of reconstituted cork so it has the similar hardness to the usual leather bike saddle. This also means that you will have to spend at least two weeks for the cork saddle to break in and start to soften. They will eventually release variants with different grades of cork. The process of sourcing the materials from the cork trees is also less harmful as stripping the bark every 8-10 years boosts the carbon consumption 3-5 times.
Before the cork saddle gets to you, the components are harvested in Portugal and then molded when it reaches Glasgow, Scotland. This is also where the parts are treated with water-based lacquer and then integrated into the welded titanium substructure. Knowing this entire process, it will not surprise you that the FR-1 Bike Saddle is a bit expensive at around $130. But of course, it’s a small (expensive) price to pay if you want a more eco-friendly bike to accompany your sustainable lifestyle.