Two Entrepreneurs Find Niche in Custom Wooden Bicycles Woodworkers carve out a niche with an offbeat, high-end product.
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Entrepreneurs: Master woodworkers Bill Holloway and Mauro Hernandez, who craft custom wooden bicycles using traditional techniques through their San Jose, Calif.-based business, Masterworks Wood and Design.
"Aha" moment: In 2010, orders had slowed for custom furniture, doors and moldings made with traditional woodworking techniques, leading the pair to toss around ideas for new products. "Someone said, 'I bet you can't make a wooden bike,'" Holloway remembers.
Roll with it: Hernandez and Holloway knew that early bikes were made of wood but questioned whether their concept--a rideable work of art--could fly. When their plywood prototype turned out to be both stylish and functional, the woodworkers grabbed their bevel-edge chisels and planes and began building a wooden bike for the mass (albeit high-end) market.