We think that flax is a magical fibre.
From a seed, to a plant, to a yarn, to a braid or weave – the processing of flax fibre today is the same as it’s been for centuries, to create flax and linen materials for industrial and domestic purposes. We’ve added a bit of innovation and technology to weave and mould these fibres into incredible shapes, with incredible strength, opening up a whole world of possibilities.
Just a few of flax fibre’s magical properties? The flax plant takes 90 days to grow. All parts of the flax plant are used (for food, textiles and building) so there is no waste. The only water it needs to grow falls from the sky. What’s left in the ground after harvest gives nitrogen back to the earth and the fibres we use sequester CO2.
Moulding natural fibres is not easy as if you’re not careful, instead of smelling like gingerbread, the lab can end up smelling like burnt toast. We’ve now got it down to a fine art. What we’ve discovered is that flax fibre composites not only look amazing, they also have some seriously interesting mechancial properties. They are super strong (more than fibre glass) and impact-resistant. They outperform fibreglass composites in fatigue tests, and have an impressive strength/weight ratio, with a density that is even better than carbon fibre.
Now we want to see what we can do with this knowledge not only with flax, but also explore other materials using the same technology. The sky is the limit! Watch this space.
MIXING IT UP!
We chose to use a bio resin made from plant based isosorbid for design #1. What’s isosorbid? Plant glucose (i.e.sugar) transformed into these little drops using big dose of innovation. We love plants as they can grow over, and over again. And they capture rather than emit CO2. As we want our designs to last a long time so we chose this resin for its durability. This product is also exceptionally transparent (think glass), scratch resistant, and UV resistant (it outperforms its fossil fuel cousins). Amazing what you can do with plants.
Brass is made from scrap copper and zinc. It has a high resale value and is endlessly recyclable. It also is incredibly strong and hygenic – germs don’t like hanging out on it’s surface so die off. When we were looking for a material to assemble design #1 with, this was a logical choice. It gave the chair a bit of weight (we were too light), it looks beautiful and a bit retro. We like that.
For the Revology Bike, we need a material that is light and strong to connect the frame together. Brass did not fit the bill (too heavy). Aluminium did. Aluminium is the most recycled metal on the planet. Interesting facts: it uses only 5% of the energy to recycle as it does to produce from scratch and over 75% of aluminium ever produced is still in circulation today. So at the end of the bike’s life cycle, we know it’s aluminium parts will have another.