Bicycle Mechanics - Plans for making a bike
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08-25-04, 09:51 PM
I have a friend that would like to try to make a bike frame for me. He has built motorcycles and all sorts of things and would enjoy trying this. Does anyone know where he could get some blueprints to follow?
08-28-04, 12:44 PM
well what kind of frame?
i highly reccomend you not make a frame unless your friend is really really skilled at welding, ect.
if its a road bike then look at a road bike frame and go off of that
if its a bmx or mountain then look at one of those and go off of that
08-28-04, 05:36 PM
He is actually unbelievable. He has put over $40,000 into a shop in his garage. I would love to find out how to get plans.
I, too, have a buddy I want to build me a frame. I need to design it as well. I plan on researching the geometry of current bikes and base my numbers of those. My basic plan is to have him build a few different rides for me before I settle on a permanent one to be built in ti.
Good luck...and if you find "true" blueprints, etc let us know.
08-28-04, 07:58 PM
Try Tim Paterek's web site for a start. He's published quite a lengthy book on framebuilding.
There are also courses on framebuilding that you may want to look into. For example:
I'm not a framebuilder myself. I've heard that titanium is a very tricky metal to work with--I would not have your friend build you a ti frame unless he has specific expertise in titanium. For example, titanium is highly reactive at welding temperatures and thus must be protected from oxygen, which will degrade the weld strength. Argon is commonly used to shield the welding area.
Be careful--even though your friends might be happy to build a frame for you, make sure that you trust them enough that a critical weld won't fail when it counts the most.
08-28-04, 08:05 PM
I ordered a custom bike, and during the research I learned a quite a bit about making bikes. I also subscribed to a frame building mailing list. What I learned is the you need a lot of tools, many jigs are special to bike building and are expensive. Most builders say that they ruined the first 2-3 frames before they were successful in building a good one. Plans are the easiest step in the process, and you can order a set of tubes already cut from the steel supplier.. and I understand you can now buy a whole kit from some suppliers and all you have to do is add heat :) ..
in case you want to subscribe to the mailing list, it can be found here.. Warning: you will get over 100 emails a day! :)
08-31-04, 11:29 AM
Absolutely! Ti is commonly tigged in a gas tight box filled with an inert atmosphere of Argon. For parts to large for an inert box, the weld is performed with a special tig torch with oversized gas shields/trailers and the rear of the weld is back gassed if possible.
08-31-04, 02:05 PM
Why would anyone build their own in todays' market where so many decent used and new frames are available at reasonable prices? The president of my company used to tour and do centuries when he was a teenager and they built their own frames back then, late 70's / early 80's, but the availability of frames back then is not the same as it is now. You can get plenty of decent cro-mo frames today. Sure, I thought it was cool that he did it back then, and it would be unique today I guess.
I thought about building my own wooden kayak once.... Until I figured out how many hours of work it was and everything that I couldn't do or get done because of the time that would be needed building the kayak. I would think it would have to be something you really enjoyed doing to get the benefit because I don't think you would save much in $$$.
Of course I'm just an accountant and weight everything by cost vs. benefit, unless it's for me like that new Litespeed I bought for myself on clearance at the end of last season. :D
08-31-04, 03:23 PM
I would think it would have to be something you really enjoyed doing to get the benefit because I don't think you would save much in $$$.
I think you may have answered your own question here.
I dunno about you, but after staring at a computer screen all day it can be real nice to out to the garage & putz with something mechanical for a while. Fixing a machine is a whole lot different from programming (and presumably accounting) and relaxes my brain in a way that many other things cannot. Solving mechanical problems is a great sense of accomplishment that I don't get from my day job. Oddly enough, if someone tried to pay me to be a mechanic, I'm sure I'd hate it. But working on my own junk is therapeutic.
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