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  1. #1
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    Wood Berms in Iowa

    Here are a few pics of the new wooden berm and wooden berm bridge we completed in Davenport Iowa at Sunderbruch Park. There isn't a lot of info on designing wooden berms out there so I thought I'd throw these up so peeps could check'em out. Total length of both berms is about 105 feet and the bank on the 2nd berm is almost 7 feet long/tall.

    I've got a 4 page write up (with pics) on the process we used to design them if anyone wants it, I just haven't figured out how to post a full pdf on here and I'm having knee surgery Friday so it might be a while. Thanks to the Friends of Off Road Cycling (FORC) members answering the call for help, we got this, a 12x20 deck in the middle of a 33 foot long bridge and 1 mile of benchwork done in 2 months.





    Believe in yourself? Well, of course. Just be aware that believing in myself has been the root cause of most of my injuries!

  2. #2
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    OK, so its not a wooden berm, same trail though. Here's a couple pics of the Deck Bridge. The trail goes across the entrance/exit on rough cut lumber 4 feet wide, the deck has standard green treat deck boards.





    Believe in yourself? Well, of course. Just be aware that believing in myself has been the root cause of most of my injuries!

  3. #3
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    Wow, great work! I need a video of someone railing those!

  4. #4
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    Heres the short video from the local media that shows a few of us banking it around the Mayor of Davenport, Bill Gluba.
    http://www.kwqc.com/global/video/pop...t1=News&h1=New

    And here's a pic of me doin it, but only because I was leading the pack and subsequent pics show the other riders were as high as I am!

    Believe in yourself? Well, of course. Just be aware that believing in myself has been the root cause of most of my injuries!

  5. #5
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    Nice work! Looks like a great build.

  6. #6
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    In IOWA! Can ya believe that?

  7. #7
    Heavylegs
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    great job!!! looks like a blast. How hard was it to get local media coverage? Oh and good luck with the knee

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by redd4573 View Post
    How hard was it to get local media coverage?
    The Steward for the park did a GREAT job explaining to city parks dept that this is now a "destination", and since it's only one (that we know of) within 300 miles, the city contacted the local tourism bureau, the mayor came to do a symbolic ribbon cutting and so the media showed up.

    Once they saw the pics and the structural drawings, they wanted to go into the park and shoot some video of it, we had vehicles ready to take them to within a 100 foot walk through the woods to get the videos and pics.

    As we're walking in I told the mayor I had a FANTASTIC media shot for him if he was willing, and his immediate response was- "tell me where to stand (big smile)" The media LOVED it, so the park dept loves it even more now. And uh, one thing I should have mentioned that is ultimately critical...

    We applied for and received a $5000 grant from QC Wild Places, a division of River Action- the local "get involved with nature and trails along the Mississippi corridor" group. Not only did they give us the money- but they LOVED what we did with it and told us to apply again next year!!!
    Believe in yourself? Well, of course. Just be aware that believing in myself has been the root cause of most of my injuries!

  9. #9
    Heavylegs
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    Thanks so much for the info , I was recently voted into the position of Trail Stewart for our brand new IMBA chapter Rust Belt Riders Trail Coalition with serves eastern Ohio, Being new to such challenges in a non established club means coping others successes. Thanks agin and good luck on future projects. And don't forget to post them!

  10. #10
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    If you build it.....THEY will come, lol. Had to do it! Great work.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for posting that.

    It looks very good and inspires because I'm sitting with 3-400 board feet of locally harvested hardwood and the budget to do something.

  12. #12
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    I would like a copy of the write-up you did as I am now in the process of building 6 miles of singletrack for my community. Any ideas/help you can send my way would be great.

  13. #13
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    The full write up is BEAUTIFUL! It definitely would benefit anyone looking to build a wood berm.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgw2jr View Post
    In IOWA! Can ya believe that?
    Wow, my visions of Iowa mountain biking never included anything like that. Great job working with local officials. Great job with the berms. Great job getting the local media involved.

    All I can think of when I hear about Davenport, IA.......

  15. #15
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    As Steward of this trail system, I have to give all the credit for the berms to Vibrato. The guy literally spent 2 months in the woods laying out the design.

    I dilly dally around with the political end of things, lay out trail, and preach our/IMBA's trail principles; this dude puts it all to work and makes it happen.

    Seriously, if you're ever in the Quad City area in Iowa/Illinois then you owe it to yourself to hit Sunderbruch Park in Davenport, IA. PM me if so and I'd gladly give you the guided tour.

  16. #16
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    Without the old school peeps getting thing started, we wouldn't even be involved in mountain biking- and we wouldn't have had the chance to continue to build on the fantastic relationship that they started. I took this berm project as my short term magnum opus, but without the previous stewards and dirt crews setting the groundwork, and the current steward doing the 2 year plans, mapping, signage, and all of the things on the "political" side that Jimithing takes care of I wouldn't have gotten the chance to even try.

    As I mentioned earlier in this thread, so MANY people helped when they could- frankly, I can't find the words to tell you how much that means. I know the hardcore group is getting tons of credit- and we appreciate it- but similar features in other areas has teken up to 2 years to build. Every hour someone helped was an hour we didn't have to- and there were over 650 hours on this trail extension.

    If you know someone (or a small group) who is trained in trailbuilding and doing a big project, go help with THEIR vision. (Too many cooks and all that... if they've got the vision and the support of the park, the LAST thing they need is someone trying to changfe everything in the 11th hour. Start as a laborer- I did.) An hour or two from you and your buddies might make the difference between the trail being open today or in 3 weeks. Or a year. Nervous because you don't know them? They want to build singletrack, what more do you need to know?

    Our web dood is gonna load the schematics and the write up on our local site and I will link to it here so everyone can have acces, might take a couple days.Post here or PM me and I'll do my best to answer questions.

    We travel all over the country to ride, if you build one theres a good chance we'll be in the area eventually!
    Believe in yourself? Well, of course. Just be aware that believing in myself has been the root cause of most of my injuries!

  17. #17
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    Here is the technical design: http://qcforc.org/users/vibrato/Bank...uchJubilee.pdf

    In the IMPORTANT section where it says lumber shall be chosen on site by a Certified Building Code Official- that's because I am a CBCO. If you don't have one in your club, insert whatever quilified person you have, engineer, architect, licensed contractor, "person qualified to determine structural integrety", etc. Really, you just want to show that you are aware the lumber isn't rated and that you are overbuilding it.

    Here is the "Wood Berms" write up: http://qcforc.org/users/vibrato/WoodenBerms.pdf

    THIS IS A PLANNING DOCUMENT, NOT CONSTRUCTION DIRECTIONS!! I'm happy to answer any questions anyone might have after you go through it afew times. Most wooden berms should be a lot less involved than this, but calculating the radius, angle and speed will be the same.
    Believe in yourself? Well, of course. Just be aware that believing in myself has been the root cause of most of my injuries!

  18. #18
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    Thank you for the links...Great stuff! You guys should be proud of what you have created.

  19. #19
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    Wow, awesome work, and thanks a ton for the great write-up. It's really nice to hear about how others had to think their way through the design and build.

    By the way, if you do feel like writing up a proof of your berm angle calculations, centripetal accels and all, I'm sure plenty of nerds out here on the interwebz would appreciate it.

  20. #20
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    SICK! I need to ride it!

  21. #21
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    NICE WORK! Thats awesome!

  22. #22
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    I'll be riding those trails in Late August! I get back from Columbia (South America) around Aug - 7th. I cant wait to see those trails. Fantastic Job.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vibrato View Post
    . . . . There isn't a lot of info on designing wooden berms out there. . . .
    great work man.

    i have been trying to get good info out there for a few years by taking my own photos on trips and reposting photos in threads.

    Wooden Berm
    Wooden Berm

    Colonnade, Seattle


    Duthie Hill, Washington , under construction


    i took this pic at Whistler:


    Winter Park, Colorado:




    nice berm - Page 3

    a curved wallride is a type of berm:


    i would love to see a freeride mtb trail version of this low-high-low wave/ribbon style berm:


    indoor, joyride150 i believe


    this is dirt, but you could definitely have a wood berm be this steep as well. you're not really "railing" until the steepness is 60+ degrees:


    the famous 'red bull' 180 berm at Ray's in Cleveland:



    Trailside Bike Park Opens In Park City, Utah | Mountain Bike Review


    Building a Freeride park at my house... photo from the Mtbr Mountain Bike Photo Gallery


    Wood berm pics - North Shore Mountain Biking Forums



    Diablo freeride park


    And last but not least . . . . building a transitioned face bowl corner.
    Bowled In with Ryan Corrigan (bowl building how-to)
    Bowled In with Ryan Corrigan (bowl building how-to) on Vimeo



    180 curved vert wallride at Ray's in Cleveland:

    Bermed corner photos?
    Last edited by cmc4130; 07-22-2012 at 01:36 PM.

  24. #24
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    Where in Indiana can I find berms like this???? I'm thinking no where lol

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by d_read View Post
    Where in Indiana can I find berms like this???? I'm thinking no where lol
    Doesn't Brown County have some wooden berms?

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