So in my methodical madness I made my first frame for somebody else. I wanted practice before I plopped me fat arse on my own frame. Unbeknownst to Frank the founder of Velominati.com I built the frame for him. He had no idea, he just knew I was sending him another one of my projects. In the past I sent him a custom Velominati Pint Glass…
and a custom name badge and some Velominati stencils. Anyway, he got the frame last night and was overwhelmed with gratitude and how “f***ing awesome” it is. Now his wife wants one so I guess I’m a professional frame builder now. He actually had his wife Michelle video tape the opening of the package and his reaction so hopefully he’ll send that to me soon and I can post it up.
I’m really stoked! Basically the frame is finished. I just have to clear coat the wishbone stay and glue it in and then go to the bike shop to have the BB and head tube “faced and chased”. For not knowing how to braze when I started and never building a frame before I’m EXTREMELY please with the result of the first frame. I would like to thank those that helped me out on the project – Kurt at Butnz.com for the awesome die cut stickers and Brian at Kelson Bikes for the TIG weld on the seat tube connector tube and checking the alignment on his alignment table. Without further ado, I give you serial # 0001
Clicking on the images makes them bigger.
So after having Brian from Kelson Bikes TIG the seat stay connector tube on all I had to do to “complete” the frame is braze on the rear brake cable stop on. I decided to ge a little artistic with the connector tube too so with a little creative Dremeling and filing I give you the results below. Oh, I tried to get a little artistic with the photography too.
Cavendish Wins Again!
So I went up to see Brian Kelson of Kelson Bikes yesterday to have the seat stay connector tube TIG’ed on and fortunately for me he threw his little cantilever measuring jig on the bike. I just assumed that the wishbone stay would be the right length and that the cantilever posts would be in the right place in relation to the rim. But in hindsight I can see why it would be long to give one some leeway depending on what drop-outs they are using. I would have just got the frame back from the powdercoater and glued the stay in and been totally screwed when the brakes would have not been able to be adjusted correctly. I need to chop about 10mm off of each leg of the seat stay before I glue the clevis pins in. Whew! Thanks Brian.
Speaking of Brian – totally nice guy and he laid a sweet little bead down for me. He also put my frame on his gigantuan alignment table, The thing is like 4″ thick solid steel. He was saying that industry acceptable for mass produced is 4mm (unless you are Specialized and then you let anything fly) and custom builders shoot for 2mm or better. Mine was within 1mm so I’m pretty stoked! He just did a quick little cold set of the left chain stay to bring everything up to snuff.
If you’re in the market for a sweet custom frame – steel, titanium, carbon – I would drop Brian a line. He knows his stuff. Oh, and he was gracious enough to give me the adhesive I need to glue the stay in one I get the bike back from the paint shop.
Thanks again, Brian
Posted: January 5, 2012 in Uncategorized
I got really busy during the holidays and going to Boise to meet up with my cycling coach but anyway I played hookie yesterday and finished things up. Amazingly, getting the bottle cage bosses and the cable stops straight was harder than you would think. I’ll have to come up with some sort of jig to make things easier. The other issue I ran into was that the seat stay connector tube is oval and the programs that give you a miter template are based on round tubes so I just guestimated with a sharpy to rough the miter in and then filed until I got it right. I also was having heartburn with the additional work that was going to be required to attach cable guides/stop to the carbon seat stay so I ended up drilling a hole in the right clevis pin (that attaches to the right rear drop out) and the left side of the wishbone to route the rear derailleur cable housing internally through the seat stay. Once again, sorry for the blurry pictures.
Cable Routing at Drop Out
Cable Routing at Wishbone
Now I just need to have Brian from Kelson Bikes TIG the connector tube on and then glue the seat stay in and it’s off to the powder coater.
So I got the rear end brazed up and mocked up the carbon wishbone seat stay and a rear wheel. You can see from the images that things came out spot on as far as alignment goes. Basically I just need to braze on all the doo-dads and clean things up and and it’s off to the powder coater.
Almost looks like I know what I'm doing
IT IS ALIGNED!!!! Aka, auto focus still sucks.
So I got up this morning and brazed the rear drop outs onto the chain stays and now I’m getting ready to go for a ride with some racer friends on a relatively warm December day in southeast Idaho and the roads are clear and there is no wind. I hired a cycling coach that is a pro with a UCI licensed contential pro team and things are going really good with training – this will be the first year since I started riding seriously six years ago that I’m actually losing weight over the winter – so I’m pretty stoked about starting my first season as a Cat 4. Now the way the coach is working out I’m even thinking Cat 3 might be within reach. After I get back I’ll braze the chain stays on and the frame will basically be ready to install the carbon fiber wishbone seat stay. Life is good. Oh, and my Velominati Gillet (wind vest) and Specialized podium shoes that match my S-Works cycling shoes came in to so I’m pretty much a pimp.
Auto Focus Sucks