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Old 06-08-09, 12:23 PM   #1
GoJacob
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Last ditch effort to save frame! Any help?

So, my latest project ended suddenly when I found my seatpost was stuck in the frame. The odd thing was that this seatpost was just an aluminum tube without a seat clamp/attachment at the top. The seat and seat clamp just kind of sat/wedged into this aluminum tube which was jammed down the steel seat tube. Very odd. Anyways, This aluminum tube was stuck even after removing the seat tube bolt. There was about 1 1/2 inches sticking up from the seat tube which leaves about 7-8 inches actually stuck into the frame. I tried dripping a whole bottle of ammonia and a used a whole can of liquid wrench on it to no real avail. The night before I was about to take it into the LBS to ask for help.... my dad decides he will help me and started chiseling away at it...... so now it looks like that.
I am gonna toss the frame (I really would hate to because these touring types are VERY hard if not impossible to come by around here) but wanted to know if there is any hope to saving it. My ideal/dream bike would be a Miyata 610/1000 but good luck to me finding one... even on ebay. I figured it wouldn't hurt... so what the hell... I posted it here. Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-08-09, 01:23 PM   #2
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Not the easiest of solutions but have you thought of drilling it out? Aluminum is very soft and if you could find a large enough drill bit you might have some success. Of course, you are going to need a honking large drill - perhaps a machine shop might help you? BTW - are the seat binding flanges mangled in your pic? Closing those back up to properly work again might be problematic for you ...
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Old 06-08-09, 01:36 PM   #3
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Not the easiest of solutions but have you thought of drilling it out? Aluminum is very soft and if you could find a large enough drill bit you might have some success. Of course, you are going to need a honking large drill - perhaps a machine shop might help you? BTW - are the seat binding flanges mangled in your pic? Closing those back up to properly work again might be problematic for you ...
The flanges are just spread... they look to be intact without severe distortion. I guess they were fairly easy to spread and I would assume closing them up wouldn't pose a huge problem.

I HAVE thought about drilling it... but I wouldn't be able to do that myself... I figured it would probably damage the frame in the process. Has anyone had any luck with that method? I can start looking around for a machine shop. It wouldn't compromise the frame's integrity would it (considering this would be my main tourer)?
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Old 06-08-09, 01:58 PM   #4
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Lock up all tools to keep them away from your father. He is a danger to himself and all around.
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Old 06-08-09, 02:00 PM   #5
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Lock up all tools to keep them away from your father. He is a danger to himself and all around.
Hahahahaha. True.
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Old 06-08-09, 02:09 PM   #6
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Where are you physically located? Any decent machinist can fix this in less than an hour. I would think someone on the board could do it for a pizza and a 6 pack - I will if you are on LI.
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Old 06-08-09, 02:12 PM   #7
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I have heard of, but never seen, people using a hacksaw blade to carefully reach down into the seat tube and split the seatpost, then prying out the remainder of the seatpost.

If you were to go this route, it might help to shorten or modify a hacksaw blade so there is no rounded edge on the end.

Good luck! The seatpost can come out - the only question is how long will it take and how much will be left of the frame afterwards.
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Old 06-08-09, 02:24 PM   #8
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I'm in Toledo OH. I can search around for a machine shop. Is there any type/kind that I should be looking for? I have absolutely no experience with machinists/shops like that and would be blindly choosing from the phone book.

exRunner, I really appreciate the offer! I'm going to New York for a weekend at the end of June... but the frame's gotta stay here. ;-)

I was pretty sure this frame was trashed but you guys are giving me hope!
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Old 06-08-09, 02:25 PM   #9
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I've done it with hacksaw blade. There are handles that let you use hacksaw blades open-ended. Set up the blade in the handle so that it cuts when you pull on it. Then just lower down into seatpost tube and saw away. Will take about 30-45 minutes for the cut. Use some cutting-oil so you don't clog up the teeth of the blade with aluminium shavings.

Personally, I would just clamp it in my mill and use a wide end-mil bit to shave away the entire seatpost.
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Old 06-08-09, 02:27 PM   #10
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I vote for the hacksaw blade route. Get a couple of new long blades, hold one end with a vise grip and saw a slot on the inside of the seat post. It will help to start slowly and carefully so you don't cut several overlapping grooves but only the one that you need. If you're feeling extravagent you could buy a blade holder that looks like this
http://www.mkmorse.com/hackm.html

to make it go easier. It can be done with the expenditure of one evening and a few beers and the frame will be saved. Good luck
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Old 06-08-09, 02:31 PM   #11
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Hmm.. any hacksaw blade will do? I actually tried that but the blades I used were so flimsy that they eventually bent. And I was just using the bare blade without any kind of holder... I may have to make my way to the hardware store....

Keep the ideas coming. Thanks!
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Old 06-08-09, 02:39 PM   #12
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DannoXYZ has the right idea to cut on the pull to prevent blade bending. I forgot that detail. Also there are different thickness blades available from .032 to .075 inches and thicker would be better in this case I believe
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Old 06-08-09, 03:41 PM   #13
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Pull out what you can with vise grips then go at it with a hack saw. I've done it, its just slow. If you are bending the blade sideways you are pressing down too hard. Simply be gentler and things will work (slowly mind you). Also, keep your father away from that thing, and have the seat tube honed after you get the post out.
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Old 06-08-09, 03:48 PM   #14
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I am guarding all of my equipment from his evil hands... hahaha....

I am working on it currently and think i may be able to take it piece by piece... there's a LOT of tube in there. I've already bent 3 blades :-\ but am making more progress than ever... and will move slower from now. :-)
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Old 06-08-09, 04:25 PM   #15
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After working on it for about an hour... and to no further progress... I am not so sure the hacksaw method is working. My main issue at this point is that I I am unable to gain enough leverage to cut farther down the tube without bending the blade. And I'm unable to pull out any slightly loosened pieces because none of my vise grips/pliers will fit in the seat tube far enough to get enough purchase on the pieces. I am only sufficiently cutting about 3-4 inches down the seat post. Maybe I should post another picture of my progress... and maybe there is something I am missing.
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Old 06-08-09, 04:41 PM   #16
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Here is what I have so far. I can't grab a hold of those pieces with my tools though. And now I'm having difficulty getting leverage to cut down further.
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Old 06-08-09, 04:47 PM   #17
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There are so many threads on this and other like projects. The final all else fails solution is ammonia or penetrating oil and using fire to heat the frame (expand the steel) and then work the post loose.
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Old 06-08-09, 04:50 PM   #18
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This is all making me very sad

Find a machine shop, or go pick up a very large metal drill bit, and take your time. Oh yes, don't let your father near tools or metal objects again . . . of course, my father would have done it worse
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Old 06-08-09, 04:50 PM   #19
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It appears that I am too late.
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Old 06-08-09, 04:56 PM   #20
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I haven't actually soaked it in ammonia... I've read pouring it through the BB and letting it soak. Even if it freed up the post, I don't know if there would be any place I could grab it to pull it out. Would this still be a viable option for this particular case?

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This is all making me very sad

Find a machine shop, or go pick up a very large metal drill bit, and take your time. Oh yes, don't let your father near tools or metal objects again . . . of course, my father would have done it worse
I'm thinking this may be my last resort. Hell, I was going to toss the frame and search for a new one, but the comments on here have led me to try a few more things before that.
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Old 06-08-09, 05:21 PM   #21
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It appears the seatpost may have gotten stuck in the past and someone just cut it off and jammed the upper end of another post in there.

You've got too much stuff sticking into the middle of the post to allow you free access with the hacksaw. You need to grab the edges that are protruding inwards with needle-nose vice-grips and twist them inwards even more to break them off. You may even use a small chisel to cut the protruding pieces. Then you'll be able to push the hacksaw all the way down the opening.


It appears the seatpost may have gotten stuck in the past and someone just cut it off and jammed the upper end of another post f you've got steady hands, you may even use a die-grinder with an aluminium cutting bit. But these clog up easily with shavings and you'd have to clear it out often.
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Old 06-08-09, 05:32 PM   #22
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21 posts and no explosives yet?
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Old 06-08-09, 05:44 PM   #23
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21 posts and no explosives yet?
I'm so close to this...



I have no problem sticking the hacksaw all the way to the bottom... I just have no way of knowing if the bottom part of the blade has enough force to sufficiently dig in... and when I have the blade straight up and down and try to put more force towards the bottom, I end up bending the blade.

Hacking it apart seemed like the way to go. None of my tools can reach down and grab a hold of the scraggly pieces coming up but I don't want to invest in a bunch of special tools I'll never use again... if it's not going to be worth it. It's a vintage 80's japanese frame (my favorite kind!) so the only issue is searching for a new one...
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Old 06-08-09, 09:29 PM   #24
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it's a looong process. be patient. keep working at it.

i had a stuck post that i hacksawed for a few hours. it was worth it in the end.
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Old 06-08-09, 09:59 PM   #25
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I was in exactly your position last fall with an early 90's Bianchi race bike. I tried penetrating oil and ammonia through the bottom bracket, eventually I cut the top off and attempted the hacksaw trick. No luck. After hours and hours of cursing, I gave it to a machinist who got the post out in a couple of minutes.

If I were you, I'd call around to local bike shops and ask if they have a particular machine shop they work with and can recommend. Otherwise, open the phone book, call AAA Machining and explain your situation. I'm pretty sure my guy used a slide hammer, for what it's worth.

I am a commited DIYer but I wish I would have taken it to a pro somewhere between the first and third wasted afternoon. Good luck!
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