Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Kathleen's bling machine

I have not finished assembling this bike but i got impatient and took photos anyway. I was struck by the dark richness of the gold Paul Component hubs, crank and brakes. We get custom anodized Paul's stuff for our cyclocross team. The 'Cross single speed world championships will be at Golden Gate park in nearby San Fransisco and we will have at least four people riding in the event, including this bike.
The Mavic reflex CD rims will be fitted with Challenge Grifo-32 tubulars. I'm sure the bike will come in at a low weight but all the parts are designed to take a beating. The fork is the new Ritchey WCS 'cross and a number of out elite riders will be trying them out, as will I-an old non-elite.

Some stories are happy

About 1993 I built a lugged frame and fork with a fillet brazed stem for this guy in the photo. He put all Dura Ace parts on it and rode it until May of this year when the bike was stolen. Usually around here bikes that get stolen are never seen again. A couple of days ago someone came by with the bike, paint partially stripped and a bunch of low-end parts had been installed. The story was that this person had seen a craigslist ad for the bike for $ 150. He borught it by my shop to authenticate it but also to see if it had been stolen. I knew immediately who's bike it was and today bike and owner are reunited. Maybe the frame needs new paint and parts but this owner is really happy. Some times you just get lucky.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

26" wheel hardtail bound for Kansas

This photo shows that yes, I can put the cables underneath the top tube ! I have this routing on my own bike and like how the cables are out of the way. I don't hear as much rattling on bumpy trails, either.
The classic wishbone of the tig. s.l. mountain bike frame , one of my staples for at least 18 years.
This smaller frame gets a downtube gussett and will be fitted with a 120 mm travel shock fork.
The bike will hold 2.3 tires and should be good on just about any type if dirt.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Scandium 'cross frame for a local

The rider of this frame has a really short torso so the top tube is pretty short. The rider has long legs so the seat tube is pretty long for a rider this tall , so I guess you could call this one the tall-short frame.
I was not supposed to build this frame for another month but the customer's present bike was stolen so if she is to race the full season I had better get this frame to here as soon as possible.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Scandium single speed 'cross frame

After many weeks of waiting I finally got a couple sets of stainless-faced aluminum track dropouts. This frame will see duty in may races this season and will be ridden by Scott Chapin who is on our elite cyclocross team.
Scott wanted a simple frame, no bottle mounts, rim brakes - nothing but the minimum to have a bike for going as fast as possible.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Really tall steel frame

This frame is for a rider of about 6'8" if I remember right. The customer came up with these tasteful pastel shades and panel scheme. I like how subtle it turned out. It doesn't scream "Rock Lobster !" at you, it politely informs you if you care to look.
I also made a matching fork but it didn't make it into the photo session today. All I can say is that this rider will finally have a bike tall enough to ride.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

UBI class, one more time

Here's the fully finished frame I constructed with the class which I dubbed the " Corntrager Cobb Mtn. " No particular reason.....I did come up with other names but this one stuck.
One student from South Korea made this tiny MTB frame for his wife. She must be about five feet tall tops.
The class is assembled here to demonstrate the alignment table and the pros and cons of trying to get the frame as straight as possible. Bending metal is never a good thing , especially when really tiny mis-alignments would be hard to detect while riding. It gets to a point of diminishing returns if one really does a lot of cold-bending on a frame.
All of the final prep tools were laid out on my desk on the final day. A couple of folks were prepping their frames with only minutes to spare. It's amazing how fast two weeks can go by.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Home away from home

This is my home for two weeks while I teach at UBI. This nice little backyard cabin was provided to me by Mike De Salvo and family. Mike is perhaps the best talent in welding in the custom bike game right now and he is one of the hardest working people I know. Hard work doesn't make you a good person in of itself but Mike's hard work is a result of his commitment to maikng his customers happy and providing for his family. I'm lucky to be here-all I need to do to earn my keep is feed the cats and water the garden while Mike and family are off on a much deserved vacation.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

UBI class continued

Here's the frame I'm building to demo the process for the class. It's a 29er for about a six foot rider.
The days lessons are often spelled out on this dry-erase board. It's funny how students are often so consumed with their frames that they forget to look at the board when they need to know the next step. There's a lot of information to take in when you only have two weeks to build your first frame. I warn the students on the first day that staying focused and not obsessing over really small details is the best course but during the process those ideas can get lost. Eventally , everyone finishes their frame and the world keeps turning !

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

U.B.I. class of 08/11

This is the fourth class I have taught at UBI so far and this group is working at a faster pace than any class I have instructed. It isn't just one or two accelerated students, it is pretty much the whole group. I feel very lucky to be able to teach at UBI and even more so with a class like this.
No matter what, the experience here is very rewarding and it helps me become a more organized thinker.....a great side benefit. As always , I hae to build a frame along with the eight students. This frame, a steel 29er will be property of UBI and will get ridden by the staff. I'm happy to build them a frame that I hope will be useful i the future.
This student came from Canada and was one of five international students in the class. There is a bit of a language barrier with a couple of the students but they are not deterred by this, they just put on the helmet and weld away until tey get it right.
Even the boss , Ron Sutphin came in and taught mitering on the Bridgeport today. The school is a result of his vision and ability to get like-minded folks on the staff. This might be the best school of its kind anywhere.