Replacing willow with bamboo in cricket bats

Change log
Ramage, MH 

jats:p Willow has been used for nearly 200 years as the main material in the blades of cricket bats, whilst the application of bamboo in sport has declined. In this work, laminated bamboo was characterised to assess if it could be a viable alternative to willow. Bamboo matures much more quickly than willow and is prevalent in countries, such as India, where there is a large interest in cricket. Using bamboo could lead to increased participation in cricket and new products focused around the low-cost production and increased sustainability of cricket bats. Alongside materials testing, finite element modelling was used to understand the properties of a full-scale cricket bat made of laminated bamboo. Working with Garrard & Flack, a cricket bat manufacturing company, a full-size bamboo bat prototype was fabricated. It was found that laminated bamboo could be a suitable alternative to willow due to its higher Modulus of Elasticity, higher coefficient of restitution and larger area of coverage of the ‘sweet-spot’, enabling increased energy transfer from the player to the ball. However, due to its higher density, shape optimisation is required to design a light-weight laminated bamboo bat. </jats:p>


Peer reviewed: True

Biomaterials, laminated bamboo, willow, finite element modelling, deformation and fracture, product design
Journal Title
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part P: Journal of Sports Engineering and Technology
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SAGE Publications
The Dyson Bursary Fund partially funded the research for this project.