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  1. #1
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    Bamboo frame Worklog [MADE IN BRASIL]

    Hello everyone!
    First I want to thank you all for the inspiration for this project. I've been browsing the forums for some time now, found some awesome topics about bamboo frames and realized it coudn't be THAT hard.
    So, to make things harder (and because carbon fiber is so expensive here - its like U$$120,00/mē + shipping) I decided to go with Fiberglass

    (FULL SIZE PICTURES IN MY FLICKR: here)


    So.. I started shopping for bamboo and found these:

    Some regular stuff and some Nigra for the stays. The big one? It is going to become a fork in a near future.


    Heating the pieces of Bamboo:




    Sanded:



    So I browsed Cannondale website and got the Supersix dimensions, translated into AutoCAD and cutted the pieces at aprox sizes:



    So far so good huh?! Okay but there's a problem. I can't get the right TUBES, dropouts and stuff here in Brasil. Yeah, we don't have (http://www.cycle-frames.com/) and I was in no mood to import metal tubes from the US. So I started working with what I had in hands: FIBERGLASS.

    First I decided to integrate the bottom bracket in the structure of the frame. I started by laminating 3 layers of fiberglass to the bottom bracket so it would absorb the impacts it is going to be submitted:



    It sure fells stiff but I can't help thinking how long will it last.

    For the head tube I got a piece of bamboo and stuck the main head parts in it. Will laminate some fiberglass in it. And for the rear dropouts I made a mold of my main bike and I'll laminate it with fiberglass and some internal metal reinforcements (surprise for the upcoming posts).

    This post's final picture include the finishing-pending bottom bracket and my solution for the head tube as well as the MOLD for the rear dropouts.



    Tomorrow i'm gonna finish the rear dropout mold and hopefully laminate a couple dropouts and the head tube.

    (more pics here)
    Sorry for the "rusty" english, now COMMENT!
    Last edited by Malk4vi4n; 07-06-10 at 12:01 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member ftwelder's Avatar
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    This is an amazing thread. You may need to make the surface of the tubes rough for the resin to soak in. I am looking to how the lugs are laid up.

  3. #3
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    Yes yes, will do! I'll also add some fiber inside some of the tubes, near the joints. Something like this guy did: http://picasaweb.google.com/alansutt...26423327444258
    i'm thinking of using air baloons to keep the fiber under pressure against the walls.

  4. #4
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    Dammit!
    Last night I laminated a fiber rear dropout in a epoxy mold and stuck some metal reinforcements. So today I checked and it was crap. The rear dropout didn't quite came out of the mold and it was so weak. It came apart and I even got my metal from it after some smashing and cracking.
    S*** happens when ur a noob at anything right?! I think the fiber din't "bent" around the metal and some corners as it should so weak spot were created.

    So I came up with the plan B, witch is less complicated and sounds stronger as this time I will wrap the fiber around metal and bamboo and there will be no hard corners. Sorry to say u'll have to wait for the pictures for I'm late for some stuff right now and gotta go.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Sexy_Lugs's Avatar
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    Looks awesome bro, I cant wait to see these drop outs! I think that the look of fiber glass and metal reinforcements would have looked really cool, i gotta see where you going with it!

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    Thank you for the support and good vibes!


    Picture time

    Here are some metal and the mold that didn't work. There are 7 metal strings in each cable section. (these are old "cables", I made new ones and they show in following pictures)



    I call this Plan B. Let me explain how I'll do it;
    1. Get the main triangle of the frame glued up in place
    2. Fill the mold with resin and metal
    3. Get fiber and resin around those metal strings and stick them inside the bamboo chain and seat stays
    4. Glue and laminate it all together while it's positioned in a hub. The hole thing will be straight and aligned hopefullyl. (sorry, I guess there will be no metal to SEE when done)




    The alignment of the center of the nut is quite good with my bike's.





    Here's the head tube ready for laminating (first task of the day).




    And an exclusive shot of my board.




    Her name is Phoebe and she's the parts donor (and 2nd ride).




    Lets hope the bike holds it together!
    Last edited by Malk4vi4n; 07-06-10 at 10:23 PM.

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    HA! Plan B is no more. Moving on to plan C (the first decent one if you think about it). Bought a couple of these and you can figure out the rest:



    Now moving for the next stage of the build: Cut and paste



    Doing some work on the tubes. Boring...



    Let the dremel tell ya




    Soo...Last night I had some friends over and we got enthusiastic so there you go, little shot cups:





    Wish me luck. And reply goddamit!
    Last edited by Malk4vi4n; 07-08-10 at 01:30 PM. Reason: grammar

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    Nice, it looks good. Hope it rides well. Always fancied treating myself to a bamboo bike when I can afford it!

  9. #9
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    First off, the shot glasses are awesome, perfect way to use up scraps I reckon! As for the bike build, I hugely impressed but what you've done so far, so much so I've found a clump of bamboo that I plan to hack down this weekend so that I can make a start myself. Please keep posting pictures, very inspiring!

  10. #10
    Senior Member mustachiod's Avatar
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    love the shot glasses, can't wait to see the finished bike. keep going!
    Quote Originally Posted by powers2b View Post
    BF does not have the answer to what you will be happy with.

  11. #11
    Senior Member dleccord's Avatar
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    did you use fiberglass for those shot glasses?

    awesome build thread and please more pix!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by dleccord View Post
    did you use fiberglass for those shot glasses?

    awesome build thread and please more pix!
    Pure bamboo and some varnish finish. No fiber.

    Thank you all for the replies! Tomorrow I'll take more pictures.
    Thinking bamboo cable stops...

  13. #13
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    I am so happy right now!

    Pictures are better than words. In a process that took me some 19 hours I aligned and glued all stuff together for laminating tomorrow.






    Front. Final job;







    As you can see I already put some fiberglass in some spots where it was difficult to cut the bamboo in proper shape



    Sticking with plan C!






    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .

    .



    And last but not least, the preview of the beast:

  14. #14
    Senior Member RoboMonkey's Avatar
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    Make sure your rear dropouts are lined up. Put a wheel in if you can do it without breaking anything. I tried doing it like you have shown here, and my dropouts were not lined up right. One was a little bit further back than the other, which made it extremely difficult to put the wheel in.

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    Wow! so awesome. I can't wait for the bamboo I'm going from seeds is big enough to make something out of.

    Very inspiring thread!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoboMonkey View Post
    Make sure your rear dropouts are lined up. Put a wheel in if you can do it without breaking anything. I tried doing it like you have shown here, and my dropouts were not lined up right. One was a little bit further back than the other, which made it extremely difficult to put the wheel in.
    Thanks for the tip. I will test it tomorrow before laminating.

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    Today I'm doing some final alignment. The central hub was off and the head tube had a side angle on it. Now is the time for final adjustments before laminating so I also replaced the chain stays for some stronger bamboo. Better safe than sorry.
    Now, back to work.

  18. #18
    Senior Member FlatSix911's Avatar
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    Well done ...

    Do you have epoxy putty available in Brazil ... retail name of JB Weld?
    This stuff is a two part compound that would be perfect to reinforce some the high stress areas in your frame.

    You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
    You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
    You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
    You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down.
    You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlatSix911 View Post
    Well done ...

    Do you have epoxy putty available in Brazil ... retail name of JB Weld?
    This stuff is a two part compound that would be perfect to reinforce some the high stress areas in your frame.


    Hey, what do you think THIS is? Always in the box! Its called Durepoxy around here.



    Im actually going to reinforce all the corners with it, the fiberglass isn't that good on corners.

  20. #20
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    Please could you post the sizes of the bamboo pieces you using? As in diameter and if possible wall thickness. I literally walked into a nearby bushy area and hacked out some bamboo, some of it really big and some a little on the small (I think).

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    Picture time! Uploading. ..

  22. #22
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    Okay fellas, sorry for the long time between posts. I am a damn perfeccionist and it was very hard to get satisfied with the alignment of my bike. I mean I worked like a dog on this, but now is good to go.
    Pictures!

    This is the final alignment stage where I glued the stays in place.



    Is as good as it gets



    My good old tire as I wait for the bike to dry before placing the rear dropouts



    My friend working on a 198X Caloi 10



    This is Vin Diesel thinking "Holy sh*t.."; Fast and Furious is on.



    Looking good or what? The rear wheel is sooooo close to the seat tube: 1.35cm



    From the back



    Its in place. Now I have to laminate. Tomorrow morning maybe.
    Last edited by Malk4vi4n; 07-15-10 at 06:22 PM.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by EigerSA View Post
    Please could you post the sizes of the bamboo pieces you using? As in diameter and if possible wall thickness. I literally walked into a nearby bushy area and hacked out some bamboo, some of it really big and some a little on the small (I think).
    I just used some good sense. Take a aluminium bike as model and look for the right diameter. As for wall thickness, it varied for each tube around 2.5 - 3.30mm, being the large ones the seat and bottom tubes

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malk4vi4n View Post
    I just used some good sense. Take a aluminium bike as model and look for the right diameter. As for wall thickness, it varied for each tube around 2.5 - 3.30mm, being the large ones the seat and bottom tubes
    Awesome job! I have to admire someone who doesn't just post "How do I....?" questions and just gets after it and starts building.

    My only observation/concern:
    Seems like using metal tubes to get your tubing diameters might not be the best solution- I've never done a bamboo bike, but the ones I've seen on this forum all use bigger diameters than what you're using.

    The proof will be in the finshed frame though- can't wait to see it!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Live Wire View Post
    Awesome job! I have to admire someone who doesn't just post "How do I....?" questions and just gets after it and starts building.

    My only observation/concern:
    Seems like using metal tubes to get your tubing diameters might not be the best solution- I've never done a bamboo bike, but the ones I've seen on this forum all use bigger diameters than what you're using.

    The proof will be in the finshed frame though- can't wait to see it!
    My objective is to build it lighter than my aluminium bike, lets see how it handles the road.

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