Bikes are awesome. Riding bikes are awesome. Getting splash back from treading water, is not awesome. Here is a guide to making your own wood bike fenders.
Now there are others who have made Instructables on making wood fenders, mine is going to use a slightly different technique but using the same method.
I made this last summer, and tried taking pictures as I go, as I hope they will help guide you making your own. I made this last summer, so I will try my best for remembering measurements. We will be using the laminate technique, that many others have used. In mine I will show how to do a striping pattern.
Step 1: Getting Your Wood
this first image shows what we will roughly be making.
I used two types of wood for this. Pine (poppler for the other one) and walnut. but you can use whatever you have.
I sandwiched the Pine between two Walnut pieces. Make sure these pieces have a width of AT LEAST 1 1/2'" in order to get enough strips for each fender. I think I made the final piece 32" long, this will all depend on how long you want your fender to wrap around your tire. I did this process twice, as I was experimenting.
Step 2: Glue It to a Scrap Board
This step is mainly for saftey. See, in the following step, we are going to run it through a table saw and cut them into thin strips. The first time I did this, I did not use a board to help push it through, and it was dangerous. With this you have a much bigger piece to work with, because by the time you get to the end of your piece, you won't have enough to push it through. Thus it is mainly for safety, If you had a band saw that can cut nice straight pieces, you can probably forgo this step.
Step 3: Cut the Board Into Strips
This step is pretty self explainatory, cut the board into as many strips as possible getting them as this as possible, 1/8" is ideal. Be careful, as always.
Step 4: Prepare for Bending!
Here's how my instructable will be different. most people will make a jig for bending their wood. but the problem I had with that, is that you won't really know if you are getting the same arc as your tire. So in this step, you will be using your own tire rim to get the right arc.
I had an extra rim lying around, but if you don't you will have take your tube and tire off to do this. You could also check junk yards or bike stores and see if they have old rims that are, junk they should work.
So first thing is, you will need to beef up the rim in order to compensate for the tire and the amount of space between the tire and the fender. I added 5 strips of masonite for the tire and strapped those down to the rim with zip ties. I then had 4 strips to sandwich around the laminate pieces.
Step 5: Gluing the Strips Together, and Sanding
Now, you will be gluing the strips together, gluing one at a time and stacking them as you go.
Once you have them stacked and glued, work quickly to get them in the jig. I used a ratchet strap to slowly bend the pieces around the rim. Then used a bunch of clamps to squeeze the glue between each piece. you can never clamp it enough.
Wait 24 hours, for the wood to dry, or what ever your glue bottle recommends. you should now have a nicely curved piece of wood. The glue will more than likely cause your pieces to shift and become uneven with each other, this getting jagged edges.
So of course, sand them down and other imperfections you may have. I did not have a disk or bench sander, so I put my belt sander in a vice and used it as so. It worked wonders!
The last picture shows the rear fender, I sanded out a groove to fit closer to the bike frame.
NOTICE! It is very import to get glue on the entire surface of each board, otherwise you will get gaps between each board, ruining the effect of a single piece of wood.
Step 6: Making Support
After all your hard work, you will probably want to make some support to keep it in place.
Not really sure how to describe this step, hopefully the pictures will explain more.
I bought a 1/4" galvanized rod and two L brackets with holes. I bent the rod, so it would fit around the tire. and used the brackets to attach it to the wood.
I could not figure out how to attach them to the bike, so I welded some washers onto the ends and bolted them on.
Step 7: Finish Off the Piece
I used Helmsman Polyurethane, to protect the wood. about three coats, it really made it shine!
Step 8: Attach and Admire
Here is the finished piece. Good luck with building your own!
If you like mine enough, cast a vote my way for the Bicycle Contest