Tour de Quad

January/February 1998

Reading time min

It's a common sight on campus: bicyclists pedaling in front of the Church. But the scene on October 23 was unusual, as students wobbled around on two-, three- and four-wheeled contraptions made entirely from paper products.

The race was the first project in Mechanical Engineering 210a: Experiences in Team-Based Design. Under professors Larry Leifer, '62, ms '63, phd '69, and Mark Cutkosky, groups of four graduate students set out to design, build and road-test a paper-made bike -- all in just two weeks. Each member of the team did a lap around the 634-foot course set up on the red concrete paving stones. Some of the bikes crumpled before reaching the finish line.

First prize went to the lightest bike with the fastest time. The winner weighed 31 pounds and was clocked at 9 feet per second. "It's a cool feeling," says co-creator Doug Lai, a master's student. "You built this thing and now you're doing something with it."

You May Also Like

© Stanford University. Stanford, California 94305.