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Thread: Tube Notchers

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    Senior Member jeremyb_nz's Avatar
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    Tube Notchers

    So... whats everyone using for mitering? I'm looking at getting the "Pro racer economy model" from here:

    http://www.cardwells.co.nz/Our_Brand...MenuId/20.aspx

    Should do the trick I imagine, shipping to New Zealand from the states at ones I've looked at on ebay has been as much as the notcher itself!

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    Senior Member Nessism's Avatar
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    I've never used one but according to many on the framebuilders list those cheap copeing tools are junk.

    If you are just a hobbiest consider using tubemiter.exe http://www.ihpva.org/tools/index.html It will print you a paper template which you wrap around the tube to get the miter angles you want. Touch up with a file to fine tune the proper fit. If you are going to be building a lot of frames consider getting a proper machine to make the miters such as a mill.
    Becareful buying/selling bike parts on-line. I learned the hard way. :(

    Good/Bad Trader Listing

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    I use a "jiont jigger" similar to the ones you posted and it has worked for the 6 frames I have built with it, I work with .035" 4130. People will tell you that it works poorly for butted bicycle tubing which is thinner. Mine has definitely deteriorated and I wish I had money and space for a mill to replace it, but it served its purpose, which was to get me building quickly and easily. I have had to make many modifications and jigs to get it to accomodate streamline tubing and offset notches and some other silly functions. But in hindsight doing that really worked to my advantage because I know so much more now about what I want and need for when I do get serious.

    If you want to start building soon (which is the only way to learn imo) you have nothing to loose by getting one of those, Good Luck!

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    I've used one that looks similar to one in your link from Harbor Freight and build two recumbent bikes. One poster (on some site or another) suggested that you use a hole saw an eighth of an inch smaller than the desired hole and finish it to size with a file. That worked well for me - between the quality of the notcher and the quality of the job setup I didn't ruin any tubing and it is much quicker (for me) than printing the tube mitering template and cutting it all by hand. Here is a site that has plans for a tubing notcher that looks interesting http://www.rorty-design.com/content/CAD_plans.htm

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    It depends a lot on the type of cutter you have. With the corect cutter those things can cut nice copes.

    I personally prefer abrasive copers. The consensus for small pro shops seems to be some kind of milling machine, but for the guy making a bike per month or less, and possibly the pro, abrassive makes a lot more sense unless you want to have a mill for other things.

  6. #6
    Senior Member jeremyb_nz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slowski
    I use a "jiont jigger" similar to the ones you posted and it has worked for the 6 frames I have built with it, I work with .035" 4130. People will tell you that it works poorly for butted bicycle tubing which is thinner. Mine has definitely deteriorated and I wish I had money and space for a mill to replace it, but it served its purpose, which was to get me building quickly and easily. I have had to make many modifications and jigs to get it to accomodate streamline tubing and offset notches and some other silly functions. But in hindsight doing that really worked to my advantage because I know so much more now about what I want and need for when I do get serious.

    If you want to start building soon (which is the only way to learn imo) you have nothing to loose by getting one of those, Good Luck!
    Cool, what sort of frames you building? I'm keen to do some MTB stuff in 4130 but unsure of what wall thickness to look at.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jeremyb_nz
    Cool, what sort of frames you building? I'm keen to do some MTB stuff in 4130 but unsure of what wall thickness to look at.

    My first two were choppers with mostly re-used tubing and a few pieces of .058" 4130 thrown in for good measure. Also two fixed gears with streamline rear ends, an observed trials frame, and a folding swing bike (currently un-finished) all out of .035" 4130.

    I can't tell you what thickness tubing you should use but my advice to you is to go with a lighter, thinner wall and compensate with a rock solid design. Building a prototype is a good practice run as well as a confidence booster.

  8. #8
    Senior Member jeremyb_nz's Avatar
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    Thanks dude, any photos you'd care to share?

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