Renovo Hardwood Bicycles has collaborated with a famous Highlands distillery to create the Glenmorangie Original Bicycle out of old whisky casks.
BikeBiz reports that the casks used to make the Glenmorangie Original whisky are only used twice. The single malt has therefore come up with the Beyond the Casks series to make use of the old ones
Last year British eyewear brand Finlay & Co created the world’s first Scotch whisky sunglasses from The Original’s casks. This year Renovo has built a bike.
“Renovo shares our uncompromising approach to craftsmanship and, like Glenmorangie, is known for its pioneering work with wood,” explained Dr Bill Lumsden, Glenmorangie’s Director of Distilling and Whisky Creation.
“So, we shipped a pallet of staves from second-fill casks which once contained The Original from our Highland Distillery to Renovo’s workshop in the US. Then, we began to imagine the possibilities…”
You’d think that shipping a load of wood to a firm that makes bikes out of wood would only have a fairly limited number of possibilities.
And so it proved.
“The American oak from which Glenmorangie makes its casks is a great wood,” said Renovo founder, Ken Wheeler. “Its engineering properties are ideal for bikes, as hard woods have a high stiffness.
“For us, the only aspect that was different was the shape of the staves, which have a curve to them, and the fact that they were a little damp, after spending years with whisky inside them… which, by the way, made them smell pretty good. Although, we have to admit to whisky fans, the scent has now diminished.”
Wheeler said the firm’s craftsmen eventually decided upon a design, “which would celebrate that curve in the downtube – the largest tube of the bicycle, which carries the most load.”
Each bike takes 20 hours and 15 staves to complete.
Rumsden concluded: “In these beautiful bicycles, we have created a lasting tribute to Glenmorangie Original’s casks to which our award-winning whisky owes so much. I’m delighted that through our pioneering collaboration with Renovo, founded on a shared passion for innovation and expertise in wood – we ensure that these wonderful casks live on and on.”