it will be my first frame,a track frame with road geo, and i was wondering weather it would be easier to build a lugged frame or a welded frame. if welded, what kind? also how are lugs joined together? this whole project is kind of a whim, i dont really plan on building a whole bunch of frames.
It can be reasonably easy but fairly expensive to build your first frame. Lugs are probably the easiest but also the most laborious. You need an OA torch to melt the silver solder. The process is very similar to assembling plumbing pipe.
If you are welding you need a TIG welder. TIG is probably the hardest arc process to learn because while you have the most control, that comes from manually co-ordinating the feed of the fill wire, the arc the arc intenisty, etcc... You also need to have the a subspecialty skills of welding tubes, and very thin materials.
You also need access to about 500-1000 dollars worth of taps and reamers. Many bike shops have these, but you need to line something up before you get too far down the road on this.
A lot of first time builders are very successful, but it takes a fair amount of comitment to the tools and the process. It's pretty hard to see too many amateurs ever recouping the cost of investment, unless they are willing to make some frames for sale. I just do it because I can't help myself.
I too am looking at building a frame or two for myself only. Littlefish is a very good site for learning the basics. I have also looked at http://www.sonic.net/~maryking/index.html for how Drew did his. Lots of nice ideas there, especially if you are looking at making a folding frame. A Google search turns up many more. I agree that a lugged frame will be easier to build but more labor intensive.
The next thing I did was to obtain a copy of the Paterek frame building manual. I am currently waiting on it to arrive and this will cover some of the technical bits.
Next was to learn about brazing. Quite a few manuals are available to review and learn. Check your local library. Quite straightforward to do one you learn what to look for and have the appropriate tools. I have an OxyAcetylene kit and it is great! Reasonably priced at Harbour Freight!
My next major step will be ordering parts and doing the job. I have also thought of getting a cheap, unrideable lugged frame, measure the angles and dimensions, take it apart, clean up the joints of all the brazing material and see if I can get it back together to the original measurements? Easier and cheaper to screw up on than an actual frame that I am going to use.