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  1. #1
    Si Senior dbg's Avatar
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    Mystery: Bike frame full of sand

    Picked up a SS frame at local swap meet (Chicago burb, Harper College). It had plenty of rust spots that looked mostly surface and the guy offered for $10. For that I can play with it or toss it, so I bought. It seemed quite heavy. It was labelled 6066 aluminum -- which was clearly wrong since the rust was definitely steel. (Since looked it up as a bikesdirect Motebecane Fantom Cross UNO -white)

    The mystery part: As I carried it around, a little bit of rust seemed to be falling out of the seat tube hole. At home I was able to shake out a lot more --but it did not look like rust. It looked more like very fine sand. Not red but tan/yellow like sand. I cleared out all the vent holes and interior holes between tubes and gently tapped the frame with a rubber mallet. Sand continued to pour out of all the holes. Several pounds of sand poured continuously from all the holes. I'm pretty sure it was sand. Some had a little bit of red color but mostly pure sand color and very fine grained. Fine enough to pour continuously from the tiny holes at the far end of the chain stays. Weird.
    David Green, Naperville, IL USA "The older I get, the better I used to be" --Lee Trevino

  2. #2
    Disco Infiltrator Darth Lefty's Avatar
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    Blasting media?

  3. #3
    Senior Member CustomSteel's Avatar
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    That bike sounds like it was buried in sand or dirt at one time.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Italiansteel's Avatar
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    2-3-12 042.jpgMaybe Its a fish tale! sand hawa crazy.
    Last edited by Italiansteel; 01-25-14 at 04:11 PM. Reason: miss spellin

  5. #5
    Senior Member CustomSteel's Avatar
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    Wow, that just sucks Italiansteel...

  6. #6
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    Someone gave me a bike that had been submerged during hurricane Sandy. I cleaned sand out of every joint and bearing but not that much.
    A ride on a bike is not a walk in the park

  7. #7
    Has opinion, will express
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    Sounds like one of two things:

    A college practical joke where someone bought a BD bike, bragged about it, and someone filled it up with sand to weigh it down.

    Or

    Check the seatpost. If it is open at the top, it might be that the bike has been ridden on sanded roads or a beach and the rear wheel has thrown up grit which has made its way through that hole at the top. This is the unlikely scenario.

    I doubt that the frames produced by the factory for BD would be sandblasted.

    Lucky that the BB is a sealed cartridge.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
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    Obviously a former professional bike. They added ballast to it to get it to the weight limit.
    "It could be anything. Scrap booking, high-stakes poker, or the Santa Fe lifestyle. Just pick a dead-end and chill out 'till you die."

  9. #9
    Si Senior dbg's Avatar
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    Just a bare frame. Clumps of sand came out of the seat tube. The weirdest part to me was how the seat stays and chain stays were loaded with fine grain sand that just poured from the small holes. I'm still getting it to pour out as I take pipe cleaners and ream out all the internal connecting holes from the BB area. It would be tedious to do this intentionally. I'm suspecting bare frame was left on a beach in the surf.
    David Green, Naperville, IL USA "The older I get, the better I used to be" --Lee Trevino

  10. #10
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbg View Post
    I'm suspecting bare frame was left on a beach in the surf.
    This ☝


    I would get a gallon of kerosine and mix it with straight 30weight and fill the frame with it from different places, shake it around, let it drain.

  11. #11
    Senior member Dan Burkhart's Avatar
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    Know any body with an air compressor? I'm thinking you could blow it out clean.
    Gearhubs demystified and other cool stuff.


    The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one. Elbert Hubbard.

  12. #12
    Disco Infiltrator Darth Lefty's Avatar
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    I'm guessing the bike was left near a 6 year old's sandbox.

  13. #13
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    Keep that sand!That may be a high quality very rare sand only found on a island in the South Pacific .It was smuggled out in bike frames.Some how this one frame was lost in shipment.Think I'm kidding?My friend's law firm investigated a cargo stolen in transit.They found sand in the crates that held what they thought was widgets.they analyzed the sand and determined where the cargo switch was made.The sand was rare and only found in a small part of the world.They caught the airline employees who stole the goods.As a bonus,the sand in the crates was worth more than the widgets.

  14. #14
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    Maybe it was submerged in a river or stream for a while. The moving water carrying fine sand and silt could have deposited it inside the frame.

    That story about the rare sand from an island in the south Pacific is quite interesting. Forensic geology. Is there any internet link to this type of story?
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  15. #15
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    UCI did set a Minimum weight regulation for race Bikes ..

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by eofelis View Post
    Maybe it was submerged in a river or stream for a while. The moving water carrying fine sand and silt could have deposited it inside the frame.

    That story about the rare sand from an island in the south Pacific is quite interesting. Forensic geology. Is there any internet link to this type of story?
    sorry no internet link.This was told to me by the lawyer in charge after I asked him what do you really do at work besides foreclose on little old lady's.

  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    Weird indeed! However, if you suspect that it was submersed in salt water at some time, be very careful: some years ago, my son's steel Peugeot road bike blew into the dock at our marina. I managed to fish it out of 13ft of water, thoroughly washed it with fresh water and squirted WD40 into everywhere and everything I could reach. The bike hung unused in our garage for a couple of years, then one day I decided to take it down, got hold of the top tube and it crumbled in my hand! It was rusted completely through.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Timtruro's Avatar
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    Take it with a grain of salt, for $10, I'd throw it out as not being worth the effort. May never be right.
    "If there are no cigars in heaven, I shall not go." -Mark Twain

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