A bicycle, a carrier and a pushchair combined in one and, in addition an award-winning design object, that is the new Triobike from Denmark. The part of this combined vehicle that functions as the pushchair has to meet very high requirements in terms of safety and of resistance to weathering and UV light. This is why the manufacturers turned to Luran® S, an acrylonitrile-styrene copolymer modified with an acrylic ester rubber (ASA) from BASF’s PlasticsPlus™ product line.
Pushchair with sandwich construction
The sandwich structure of the pushchair panels consists of two co-extruded sheets and a foam filling in between. The sheets possess a Luran S side and an ABS side. Owing to its good weathering resistance, the Luran S side of the sheets faces outwards. The ABS side borders the hollow space which is filled with polyurethane foam. This five-layered structure accounts for high stability and low weight. For Sammy Hessburg-Eisinger, the Danish creator of the Triobike, the aspects of ease of processing, toughness and high UV stability were the main arguments that spoke in favor of the BASF plastic. Luran S turned out to be the most stable and by far the most UV-resistant of all materials tested at Triobike. Moreover, “Triobikes that came back for inspection after one year still looked as good as new; the housing did not show any signs of degrading,” according to Eisinger. The other cooperation partners in this project are also Danish: The co-extruded sheets are manufactured by the Vita Sheet Group. Gibo Plast thermoforms the sheets and fills the hollow space.
The Triobike, a product made by the Danish company bearing the same name, has been nominated for several design prizes and most recently won the 2005 SAS Scanorama Award for best Scandinavian design. In this context, the designers gave highest priority to the bike’s functionality for the family: once the kids have been dropped off at daycare or kindergarten, the pushchair can be dismantled with a few simple moves and the rider can continue the trip. Together with the Danish consumer-protection authorities, Eisinger conducted extensive testing in order to ensure a high level of safety for cyclists and their young passengers. For instance, the pushchair, which is available in many colours, has a five-point seatbelt and it was tested for fire safety. The Triobike is already being sold by retailers throughout Europe and its introduction in Japan and in the US is being planned.
Luran S belongs to PlasticsPlus™, BASF’s specialty plastics product line, comprising high-performance styrene plastics, biodegradable materials and foams. Whenever exacting requirements have to be met, the experts and products of PlasticsPlus™ offer a high level of diversity, reliability, partnership and innovative solutions.