By Philip Schmidt, Hometalk
If you’re prone to daydreaming about such things, you might see a parallel between conventional bike inner tubes and the incandescent light bulb. Both technologies were cool and innovative in their day, but now they’re about as “with it” as bloodletting is to modern medicine. The problem is that bike tubes and light bulbs are pretty cheap to buy and very cheap to produce, so the juicy profit margin discourages innovation.
Anyway, the next time you’re daydreaming, maybe you can do all cyclists a favor and come up with an affordable puncture-resistant inner tube (and a better light bulb than the CFL while you’re at it). In the meantime, here are some ways to reuse all those old tubes. Tip: Wash all tube materials to remove that slippery coating and general yucky tube residue.
1. Exercise Resistance Bands
Screw some straight lengths or loops of tube to a wall or sheet of plywood, using wood blocks to prevent tearing at the connections. Stretch the tubes every which way for the ultimate low-budget workout.
2. Junkyard Chic Accessories
Headbands, arm bands, belts, wallets, bracelets, you name it. All you need are some tubes, scissors and rubber cement to take your look downtown.
3. Drink Coasters
Cut tube material into any shape you like, as long as the coasters lie flat. Keep a stack on your coffee table or in an end-table drawer, and toss them out for cocktails.
4. Waterproof Clothing
There’s a designer in Holland who has an entire line of couture clothing made with bike inner tubes. It’s proof that you can lace and weave this stuff into everything from skirts to swimwear.