Tuesday, January 22, 2019

40th anniversary MTB frame

 I thought about building a 40th anniversary MTB frame for the upcoming NAHBS but decided that I didn't have the time- that was until my 8+ year-old aluminum 29er frame broke. Along with that, another component company asked if I had a frame they could use in their booth for the show- it all added up to the building of what you see: 650 boost frame in steel with dropper post routing, 1X guides and relatively modern geometry. After riding aluminum for over a decade in the dirt I'll be on steel now- yes, this one is for me.
 I elected to use a tapered head tube- I still have to put on the re-enforcing rings as of this photo. My goal was to make something mid-weight- not super light but not over-built. I'll weigh it today. I just built another one last month like this and it was just under 5 lbs. My 29er frame was under 4 so there will be a bit of a weight penalty but since I'll have 650x2.6 tires, I will not be setting any uphill PR's.
I'm hoping with the larger profile tires and a 120 mm fork I'll get beat up a bit less and be able to ride the rocky stuff without being as terrified. The dropper post will be a nice addition.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

7000 aluminum frame

 I have a frame built from this same set- Dedaciai Aversa 7000. This is virtually Italian Scandium. The frames build up very light but still reasonably stiff in the BB area. This one is going to the other side of the planet. The frame will be fitted with the customer's 3TTT Funda tapered fork. The weight is 3 lb. 1 oz- not bad for a fairly tall frame. Frequently these frames are under 3 lbs.
 The shaped tubes are not that easy to work with but now that I have about 6 of these under my belt I'm a lot more confident working with it. I'm not sure that there is any other builder in the USA making frames from this exotic stuff. If you want the lightest fastest feeling frame I can build, this is the way to go.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Aluminum CX frame for Iowa

 This customer already has a frame I built with rim brakes. This one is a bit more current with flat mounts for disc brakes front and rear. This is a pretty heavy duty frame that should take a beating.
 This color is called "teddy bear brown" and really goes well with the original black and yellow logos that I designed in 1984. In the beginning this was the only decal I offered but around 8-10 years later people started asking for other colors. I still think that this is the best color-even if it isn't as popular as back in 1984.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Dead wood no more

 I have a few old projects in my shop- frames that needed some repair but never got done for various reasons. The biggest reason is that I have so little time apart from being a custom builder. These old frames that have been hanging in my shop are the result of either a shop or a customer dropping something off to be fixed and then deciding that the frame was not worth the expense of having me fix it. After that the usual result is that the customer or shop winds up giving me the frame with the usual : " Hey, you want this thing ? - you can have it."

Another scenario is the customer leaving town and I lose touch with them. Some times I'll  hear that the original owner of the frame died- the next of kin will get in touch with me and ask if I want the frame. I usually say yes- I like to fix things and keep them out of the landfill, especially when it is an interesting old bicycle frame. This one is no exception. The only thing it needed was a down tube replacement. There is, however no small amount of skill needed to do this job properly- otherwise it is quite easy to destroy what is left of the frame in the attempt to get the old tube out.
 Fortunately I was able to get the old tube out cleanly and replace it. I had to do a bit of alignment on the frame and fork but it is now fixed, straight and ready for a repaint after hanging on a hook for untold years. The frame was built in the early '80's by Dave Tesch , someone I knew and had some discussions with back in the day. Unfortunately , Dave got cancer and passed away at the young age of 44. I liked Dave and on this particularly rainy Sunday ( When if it weren't raining I would definitely be riding ) made it a point to eventually fix this frame so it could live on.
There's a good chance the newly restored frame will see duty at the Eroica California. I'll get the correct decals and try to make it as original as possible. I think that Dave might have approved.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Definitely the last frame of the year-first of its breed

For 2019 I will be introducing the newest incarnation of the team 7005 CX race frame. This is a frame that has been slowly evolving since 2002. The newest version now has a flat mount rear brake , flattened top tube for a taste more shouldering comfort , internal routing for the rear hydraulic line and more seat stay mud room by virtue of eliminating the seat stay bridge - in the bridge's place will be a gusset high up near the seat tube. This is to do a bit of stiffening and lessen the chance of the seats tays breaking near the seat tube from flex.
The goal is to make a bike that does not load up on mud as quickly as the bikes that have come before this new one. Another goal is to have as little stuff on the surface of the main tubes - it's an attempt to have clean surfaces where the rider is likely to grab the frame for carrying. Price on this frame will be $ 1,750 and will come with a thru-axle and seat collar. All these frames will be made to order - if you plan to race and want one it would be good to get your order in no later than mid April. I have to admit-I'm kind of excited to get more of these out on the course.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Maybe the last frame of 2018 ?

 That depends on what happens today. This is the first in an aluminum batch that might number 6-8 total. I'm building three track frames in this batch- unprecedented. The frame pictured is a disc/road frame set up for Di II.
 The tubing is nearly all from Dedacciai and is 7005 series. I am now routing the rear hydraulic line through the down tube- something I didn't do until late this year in aluminum . I have offered it on steel frames for a little over a year now.
This frame is also fitted with the Ahrens design flat mount and dropouts. I'll be building many of these in 2019 according to my order list. I'll be updating my race CX frames to be more like this frame with the exception of more mud room. I should have some new stuff to show at NAHBS in Sacramento in March.

Monday, December 24, 2018

Steel MTB frame for Marin County

This one has dropper post routing and a sterling silver Jen Green headbadge. This frame will be ridden where mountain biking supposedly got its start about 40+ years ago.
 Lots of Paragon Machine works hardware on this one- BB shell, head tube, dropouts and brake caliper mount. This is not a boost frame and will probably not run a tire larger than a 2.4".
This year I will have built more MTB frames than in the last 4-5 years. Maybe the hardtail really is coming back !