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  1. #1
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    Custom Spicer for Tall Guy

    Hey all, I just wanted some input from y'all experienced in building bikes.

    I'm in the process of getting a steel (TIG-welded, straight gauge 0.9mm 4130 tubing) bike built for my 6'7" body, by Gene Spicer from Indiana.

    It's going to be my new all-around bike, for commuting most of all, but also for 50+mile rides on weekends and and getting groceries and such. I don't have a car, and I currently ride a ~62cm Schwinn World Sport from 1985. It definitely doesn't fit me, but I've dealt with it the best I could.

    Based on my measurements:
    -37.75" inseam
    -78.75" total height
    -15.5" forearm
    -28.375" full arm length

    I am getting a bike with:
    -36.5" standover
    -66 or 67cm seat tube (c-t)
    -63cm top tube
    -73 degree head tube
    -74 degree seat tube
    -310mm BB height
    -270mm head tube
    -420mm chainstay


    I just think I want some feedback from other builders who have maybe built for tall folks like myself. Do these dimensions seem right? I've used a few online fit calculators and got results similar to what is above, but I'm just scared that it will be too big, or feel super wobbly under me. I know I will probably feel stretched out at first, but will end up realizing it's just comfortable.

    Here are a couple pictures of my current bike for comparison.
    http://i.imgur.com/m1tca1U.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/YsimRHa.jpg

    It's got:
    -61cm seat tube (c-c)
    -63cm seat tube (c-t)
    -57cm top tube
    -130mm stem
    -200mm headtube
    -280mm BB height

    I hate my saddle to handlebar drop, it's incredibly far for comfort, but a taller stem, even 140mm, feels weird as it cramps my arms even closer to my torso. I pretty much only ride on the flats now anyway, because of this problem.

  2. #2
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    Not enough info here to really comment on the geometry of your new bike, but Spicer has been building for a long time and I'm sure there are good reasons behind those specs.
    As for the fit measurements like seat tube/ top tube, your last two sentences explain perfectly why those numbers are 3-5cm longer.
    Last edited by Live Wire; 03-15-13 at 02:04 PM.

  3. #3
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    I looked at your pics before I finished your post, and I thought that your position was fairly extreme for most people. I think he's got a good plan. It's not going to be wobbly, those specs are well within the normal range of bike frames. Look up some of the frames built for basketball players, those can be extreme

  4. #4
    Senior Member calstar's Avatar
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    "I want some feedback from other builders who have maybe built for tall folks like myself"

    I'm not a builder(made a few in 70s) but I'm definitely a "tall folk" with 40+ yrs of cycling experience so heres my $.02.

    Is there a personal preference for your frame being be a "traditional" frame design with horizontal tt? A sloping tt will give you a smaller main triangle. Extending the ht higher above the tt(1-2" or so, quite common these days on large frames)will also make the frame more compact.

    Why the straight gauge? You didn't mention what tubing will be used other than the generic 4130. Using oversize tubing would help eliminate any "noodling" although a competent builder should be able to build one just as "stiff" using traditional size heavy wall tubes. I'm a really tall guy myself and currently ride a Curtlo with butted OXPlatinum tubing and it is worlds more responsive, compliant and lighter than my previous straight gauge frame(the difference is stark to say the least). I would definitely talk to your builder regarding this aspect of the frame. You'll have to take my word for it but getting an "all arounder" custom frame built(at considerbable expense) with straight gauge will be something you'll kick yourself for farther down the road(litteraly and figuratively).

    I would also recommend at least 430mm cs. A 73 degree st is pretty typical for a "normal" size bike, and when you jack up the seat height you move the load center back, which is generally not a good thing, so why have a cs length that is used on smaller bikes. I know a guy, 6'9", that just had a custom frame built, not that much different from your geometry, and wished it had longer cs. Longer stays may make the bike slower handling(marginally/imperceptively for most) but you're not a racer and the benefits of longer cs outweigh that negative.

    Please post what the planned tubing size and wall thickness is. And what is the wheelbase and front/center, if you know them (I know you builder does)?

    thanks, Brian

    Here is a pic, for size reference only, of probably the largest production framemade today(KHS) with oversize butted tubing, a sloping tt, and extended ht, they claim a good fit up to 6'7". IMO, for you at 6'7", make the pictured st longer(its only 22.4/568), at least 50mm, keep the tt slope or close to as shown, extend the ht as necessary to maintain that slope, and keep the ht extension. If you're not a racer no need to keep the frame the minimum size possible as this appears for a 6'7" rider. Just a little food for thought.



    and the geo

    Last edited by calstar; 03-15-13 at 04:51 PM.
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  5. #5
    Andrew R Stewart Andrew R Stewart's Avatar
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    I won't speak to the geometry specs but will suggest that over size tube diameters be used. The biggest frames that I've been involved with have been over 70cm but with traditional diameters (although very thick walls). Both frames were pretty flexy for their riders. Andy.

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    Gene is a well known builder and supplier to other frame builders. You can always get a range of different opinions, but he should take care of you. The only problem is if he has never built big frames, it tends to be guess work figuring out whether a frame will be flexible if one has never tried a particular dimension before.

    The fact he is building in 4130 straight gage, does not mean it is not oversized. It may be just oversized straight gage. Some sort of a case can always be made for butted, but really, for those uses, and the size of the person involved, butted would be the least of my concerns. Height increases create direct increases in frame size, but 3rd power increases in the meat pushing the frame around. The minuscule weight difference is pretty meaningless. You are saving a piece of metal about the thickness of a few sheets of paper, about 3-4 inches wide and not even the full length of the tube. Buying a higher quality lock would be a more likely weight savings. In my experience one is not even saving money over 4130 butted tubes (at retail tube prices, in China, yeah, there would be savings), so normally the reason to go to the straight gage would because it is better in a given use, like less likely to show damage from rough handling, etc... Some people like the way it rides.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
    suggest that over size tube diameters be used. The biggest frames that I've been involved with have been over 70cm but with traditional diameters (although very thick walls). Both frames were pretty flexy for their riders. Andy.
    Yeah, I was thinking about getting some type of butted tubing, but since the lengths will all be far longer than what performance butted tubes were intended for, I stuck with straight gauge, oversized diameter, .9mm tubes. I was thinking about it being overly "flexy" or "compliant" if I used thin walled or butted tubing.

    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    I thought that your position was fairly extreme for most people. I think he's got a good plan. It's not going to be wobbly, those specs are well within the normal range of bike frames. Look up some of the frames built for basketball players, those can be extreme
    Okay, that's good to hear. I guess I've just never had a frame that actually fit me in any respect, and feared it'd be weird just because the numbers aren't what I am used to seeing.

    And I totally agree that the positioning on my current bike sucks, even when riding relaxed on the tops of the bars I feel like I'm in the drops. I had hoods on this bike for a little while and I loved how they felt in my hands, and the control they added, but it felt even lower than riding on the tops... If I had a foot long quill stem sticking out of the steerer tube with 250mm reach it might be okay, haha.

    Quote Originally Posted by calstar View Post
    "I want some feedback from other builders who have maybe built for tall folks like myself"
    Is there a personal preference for your frame being be a "traditional" frame design with horizontal tt? A sloping tt will give you a smaller main triangle. Extending the ht higher above the tt(1-2" or so, quite common these days on large frames)will also make the frame more compact.

    Why the straight gauge? You didn't mention what tubing will be used other than the generic 4130. Using oversize tubing would help eliminate any "noodling" although a competent builder should be able to build one just as "stiff" using traditional size heavy wall tubes. I'm a really tall guy myself and currently ride a Curtlo with butted OXPlatinum tubing and it is worlds more responsive, compliant and lighter than my previous straight gauge frame(the difference is stark to say the least). I would definitely talk to your builder regarding this aspect of the frame. You'll have to take my word for it but getting an "all arounder" custom frame built(at considerbable expense) with straight gauge will be something you'll kick yourself for farther down the road(litteraly and figuratively).

    I would also recommend at least 430mm cs. A 73 degree st is pretty typical for a "normal" size bike, and when you jack up the seat height you move the load center back, which is generally not a good thing, so why have a cs length that is used on smaller bikes. I know a guy, 6'9", that just had a custom frame built, not that much different from your geometry, and wished it had longer cs. Longer stays may make the bike slower handling(marginally/imperceptively for most) but you're not a racer and the benefits of longer cs outweigh that negative.

    Please post what the planned tubing size and wall thickness is. And what is the wheelbase and front/center, if you know them (I know you builder does)?
    What exactly do you mean by "I know a guy, 6'9", that just had a custom frame built, not that much different from your geometry, and wished it had longer cs. Longer stays may make the bike slower handling(marginally/imperceptively for most) but you're not a racer and the benefits of longer cs outweigh that negative."?

    Is "cs" seat stay or chain stay?
    I was thinking about asking him to do a 450-470mm chainstay, if I read that right, you think that would be overall advantageous?

    And are you saying a steeper or more "relaxed" seat tube works better on big frames.

    He said there's a chance that it will have a sloping top tube, but if he can avoid it, he will. I prefer the look and ride (at least I think, but since I've never ridden a fitting frame I guess I don't know how they "should" ride) of traditional horizontal top tubes. I also prefer the frame to be as large as possible while still fitting and leaving room for adjustment.

    Well I'll ask him the diameters of the seat, top, and down tubes. All I know as of now is that they are oversized diamter, .9mm straight gauge 4130.
    I chose not to use butted tubing for a couple reasons:
    -I don't care about added weight.
    -I will be using this bike daily, and locking it to 15-20 poles/racks per day (I work from my bike) and don't want to risk denting thinner tubes.
    -I fear using thinner gauge tubing will feel "flexier" or too "compliant" compared to what I am used to since they are such long tubes.



    Thanks again everybody, I really appreciate the input.

  8. #8
    Mmmm vegetables
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    Quote Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
    The only problem is if he has never built big frames, it tends to be guess work figuring out whether a frame will be flexible if one has never tried a particular dimension before.
    He has told me, and sent pictures of other tall, some quite a bit taller than mine, frames, so I'm guessing he has a decent idea about the effects of size and geometry.

    Quote Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
    The fact he is building in 4130 straight gage, does not mean it is not oversized. It may be just oversized straight gage. Some sort of a case can always be made for butted, but really, for those uses, and the size of the person involved, butted would be the least of my concerns. Height increases create direct increases in frame size, but 3rd power increases in the meat pushing the frame around. The minuscule weight difference is pretty meaningless. You are saving a piece of metal about the thickness of a few sheets of paper, about 3-4 inches wide and not even the full length of the tube. Buying a higher quality lock would be a more likely weight savings. In my experience one is not even saving money over 4130 butted tubes (at retail tube prices, in China, yeah, there would be savings), so normally the reason to go to the straight gage would because it is better in a given use, like less likely to show damage from rough handling, etc... Some people like the way it rides.
    He gave me many options for different butted tubes, but we ended up both deciding that the oversized, straight gauge, 0.9mm, 4130 will suit me well. See my reply above. We discussed the pros and cons of using butted tubing, and some of the pros were that the frame would be lighter, and that it would "feel" better. I couldn't care less about a little bit of added weight, my frame is huge and will be heavy anyway. And the "feel" issue might just work itself out by using longer than normal tubes, so I hope we made the right choice.

  9. #9
    Senior Member calstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bardleyrichard View Post
    I couldn't care less about a little bit of added weight, my frame is huge and will be heavy anyway. And the "feel" issue might just work itself out by using longer than normal tubes, so I hope we made the right choice.
    I agree with you 100% regarding the weight. I did give the wrong impression when I stated that it was "worlds" lighter than straight gauge above(it is lighter, but not a choice factor for me). As far as the "feel", I'm sticking with my "worlds more responsive, compliant" and without being "flexy". From my own experience riding very large frames(I'm 6'11 and mostly around 245lbs) with both straight gauge and butted tubes I can say, again, in my own experience, the ride quality of butted is noticeably better.

    "And are you saying a steeper or more "relaxed" seat tube works better on big frames."

    Neither, I'm saying the longer the seat tube(st) the farther back(over the rear wheel) the riders weight will be given the same angle and that will effect the bikes handling. A 68cm st will put the riders weight farther back over the rear wheel than a 58cm given the same chain stay(cs, sorry for taking that for granted) length.

    "I was thinking about asking him to do a 450-470mm chainstay, if I read that right, you think that would be overall advantageous?"

    I think longer than 420mm would be better, that seems short to me for a large frame, and I can't think of a disadvantage by going longer.

    I'm sure your frame builder knows your needs far better than I; it will be a great frame no matter what the material/size you and your builder decide on.

    enjoy the ride,

    Brian
    Last edited by calstar; 03-15-13 at 05:53 PM.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by calstar View Post
    I agree with you 100% regarding the weight. I did give the wrong impression when I stated that it was "worlds" lighter than straight gauge above(it is lighter, but not a choice factor for me). As far as the "feel", I'm sticking with my "worlds more responsive, compliant" and without being "flexy". From my own experience riding very large frames(I'm 6'11 and mostly around 245lbs) with both straight gauge and butted tubes I can say, again, in my own experience, the ride quality of butted is noticeably better.
    Right on, I'm not as big as you, 6'7" and 200-225 pounds, but I hope I'll be comfortable on a stiffer frame. I ride a lot every day in Chicago, so I'm used to bumps everywhere, hah.


    Quote Originally Posted by calstar View Post
    "And are you saying a steeper or more "relaxed" seat tube works better on big frames."

    Neither, I'm saying the longer the seat tube(st) the farther back(over the rear wheel) the riders weight will be given the same angle and that will effect the bikes handling. A 68cm st will put the riders weight farther back over the rear wheel than a 58cm given the same chain stay(cs, sorry for taking that for granted) length.

    "I was thinking about asking him to do a 450-470mm chainstay, if I read that right, you think that would be overall advantageous?"

    I think longer than 420mm would be better, that seems short to me for a large frame, and I can't think of a disadvantage by going longer.


    Alright, I'll ask him how he feels about the longer chainstays. His main clientele is "fixie" riders who want "aggressive" track frames, so I think he's just used to building frames with those ideals in mind. That's not to say he hasn't built touring or road frames, though, so I'm sure he would understand.

    Quote Originally Posted by calstar View Post
    I'm sure your frame builder knows your needs far better than I; it will be a great frame no matter what the material/size you and your builder decide on.

    enjoy the ride,

    Brian
    Thanks again for your input, I am so excited to finally have a proper fitting bike!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bardleyrichard View Post
    He gave me many options for different butted tubes, but we ended up both deciding that the oversized, straight gauge, 0.9mm, 4130 will suit me well. See my reply above. We discussed the pros and cons of using butted tubing, and some of the pros were that the frame would be lighter, and that it would "feel" better. I couldn't care less about a little bit of added weight, my frame is huge and will be heavy anyway. And the "feel" issue might just work itself out by using longer than normal tubes, so I hope we made the right choice.
    There are two ways of looking at butted tubing. One is as a design intended to structurally optimize the tubing shape. That thinking sorta crashes on the fact that the thickness is butted, not tapered in.

    Another is as straight tubing with more weight at the ends to deal with the abuse of brazing. So since you don't need thickened tubing ends for TIG welding and since you probably do need overall thicker tubing for your size of bike, perfect solution.

  12. #12
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    On the long chainstays, I like 'em. I think that regardless of your size, you will get the same vibe riding the pedal as anyone else, except that you benefit from the longer front and. But if you had a conventional seat tube angle like 73 degrees, then the fact that your frame is taller, means that the seat will be further back over the rear axle. So riding the seat it might feel a little harsher. Can't see any harm in dealing with at least that part of it, and possible more.

  13. #13
    Senior Member calstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
    There are two ways of looking at butted tubing. One is as a design intended to structurally optimize the tubing shape. That thinking sorta crashes on the fact that the thickness is butted, not tapered in.

    Another is as straight tubing with more weight at the ends to deal with the abuse of brazing. So since you don't need thickened tubing ends for TIG welding and since you probably do need overall thicker tubing for your size of bike, perfect solution.
    You lost me there. Butted tubing traditionally has transitional areas between the different wall thicknesses, is this inferior in a meaningful way to a true taper

    And "straight tubing with more weight at the ends to deal with the abuse of brazing." So the only reason butted tubes are thicker at the ends is to deal with the heat/stress of brazing? Does the tigged straight gauge frame use smaller wall thickness at the ends than the butted(given = tube od)?

    thanks, Brian

    heres a picture of my curtlo, tripled butted OX plat(oversize and ovalized at the bb), the least flexible, most compliant bike I've ever ridden. And yes those are 700c wheels(not a bike friday) and yes I've heard all the tall jokes regarding it but I could care less, I love to ride. I designed the bike with input from Doug Curtis(Curtlo) and it was built in 1999, Wound Up X carbon fork built for me at the time. I built around a dozen frames in the mid 70s so I sorta know what will work, for me, in a frame of this size. It isn't black as it appears, but a very dark green with a small amount of metal flake.

    quick garage door shot, shiplap joints on door are 7" on center exccept bottom run(for perspective)
    Last edited by calstar; 03-17-13 at 02:48 PM.
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  14. #14
    Andrew R Stewart Andrew R Stewart's Avatar
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    My understanding of tubing and the end strength after joining is that both welding and brazing create a HAZ but that the welded one is closer to the joint then the brazed one. So a tube specifically butted for welding will have a longer thin section, similar transitions and a shorter thick portion. The reason to butt, as I was told years ago, was to lighten up the frame, as the center section of the tubes are not stressed much and have had no heating they can be thinner and still strong enough. Andy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by calstar View Post
    You lost me there. Butted tubing traditionally has transitional areas between the different wall thicknesses, is this inferior in a meaningful way to a true taper
    I'm trying to think of the tube as a structure. To me if one is dealing spar tapering, in this kind of use, it would be totally gradual. I don't even really think a spar is the right model for the major loads, which seem to be more longitudinal with the tube. You see this kind of thing in other tubes, for instance tapered fork blades where the excess material is all there in thickening of the tube, which seems pretty random, and more a manufacturing issue that a perfect structure. Another thing on the main frame tubes is that even were several tubes are available for sizing the butted tube is fairly random in how it all comes out structurally. It seems to me that the whole thing is more explainable on the grounds of heat. There, just about everything makes sense, though the seat tube is a little hard to drop easily into either camp. Anyway, in the real world there doesn't have to be just one explanation.

    Part of the deal is that we buy into some overarching theory, that is patchy at best, and then we feel great about our fabulous purchase. As we should. So my suggestion, no less rigorous, to the guy who wants to buy a straight gage tubeset, is to feel good about it. And here is the technical package for doing that: As he mentioned, tube ruggedness; And also think of the joinery as being optimized efficiently, and the tubing being a wall thickness update without the inefficiency of the butts. It is as good a story as the one behind lugs.

    If you want to get a lugged frame, which I think is fabulous, then buy into the idea that: The design and contouring of all those heraldic forms is awesome; that lugs and butts stop the frame from catching on fire during the build, as only lugs can; and that the butts are a major source of weight reduction as opposed to added weight that it there only because the tubes are being cooked so long. Ok, I probably went a little far...


    And "straight tubing with more weight at the ends to deal with the abuse of brazing." So the only reason butted tubes are thicker at the ends is to deal with the heat/stress of brazing? Does the tigged straight gauge frame use smaller wall thickness at the ends than the butted(given = tube od)?

    thanks, Brian
    In general TIG tubes are conventionally sized, in part because it gives the option to use the tubes in either method, but also probably because there is minimal disadvantage to having the extra beef there anyway, and that goes for machining as well. I do think it is probably possible to make a tube that is totally optimized to TIG, and it might have a different properties. We are nearly there, given the popularity of TIG, but I think the dual use thinking still prevails.

    What is different in this case is that we are talking a much bigger rider, so arguably he would need a stouter tubing anyway. So it would be butted with an .8 in the middle, not a .6. So it really becomes a non-issue as to whether the whole tube is just straight .9, because we know there are no crazy difficulties welding .9, so why bump it up .1 extra mm for heat or weld reasons. Now if we were discussing 9/6/9 tubing vs straight .6 (hard stuff to find in any case, in all the sizes) The case for straight .6 is not really there. It would be delicate to weld. Last time I looked it was more expensive than plain jane 9/6/9, etc... I would kinda like to try making a straight .6 main tube bike, but as I say it costs more for me, and I am too heavy anyway. But one can weld straight .6, and that is why it is there, it can be welded oxy, or TIG, and no butts are required. Butts are kind of a cycling thing.

    Nice Bike! I'm only 6'1", so I am not for the most part inconvenienced by my height. I still wouldn't mind being tall enough to ride that bike for a day.

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    Randomhead
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    Quote Originally Posted by calstar View Post
    So the only reason butted tubes are thicker at the ends is to deal with the heat/stress of brazing? Does the tigged straight gauge frame use smaller wall thickness at the ends than the butted(given = tube od)?
    The HAZ for TIG welding is smaller, so the butts are shorter. That's why the True Temper catalog has so many tubes with ridiculously short butts, those tubes are intended for TIG. As far as the nature of the transition, as long as it's smooth it doesn't really matter much.

  17. #17
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    Well, I don't know if posting someone else's framebuilding work in this forum is kosher, but here's an album of the frame as it progresses.

    http://imgur.com/a/fnCzQ

  18. #18
    Senior Member ftwelder's Avatar
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    I am starting a 67cm frame next week. I used a 35mm MTB down tube for the seat tube, 38mm DT for a top tube and a .035 straight gauge down tube. I am using fork blades for chain stays. My rider is a huge strong guy. He hasn't had a custom frame last more than two years.
    1886 Surrey machinists Invincible, 1900 Nashua, 1937 Raleigh Golden Arrow, 1938 Raleigh Silver Record, 1951 Armstrong tourmalet, 1970 Motobecane Grand Record, 1971 Raleigh Professional, 1971 Gitane TDF, 1972 Legnano Gran Primio, 1973, Peugeot PX-10, 1975 Roberts, 1984 Battaglin Giro, 1985 Grandis Speciale, 2012 FTW

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  19. #19
    Senior Member calstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bardleyrichard View Post
    Well, I don't know if posting someone else's framebuilding work in this forum is kosher, but here's an album of the frame as it progresses.

    http://imgur.com/a/fnCzQ
    Looking very nice, thanks for posting the pics. In progress pics are great, keep'em coming.

    Brian

    Last edited by calstar; 04-19-13 at 09:33 AM.
    "The older I get the better I was" (from Old Guys Rule t-shirt)

  20. #20
    Senior Member calstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ftwelder View Post
    I am starting a 67cm frame next week. I used a 35mm MTB down tube for the seat tube, 38mm DT for a top tube and a .035 straight gauge down tube. I am using fork blades for chain stays. My rider is a huge strong guy. He hasn't had a custom frame last more than two years.
    Being a large guy I'm looking forward to seeing this frame. What OD is the dt? Two years, yipes! Wonder if the builders backed up their work with a replacement frame?

    thanks, Brian
    "The older I get the better I was" (from Old Guys Rule t-shirt)

  21. #21
    Mmmm vegetables
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    http://i.imgur.com/UyQE0K6.jpg

    Here it is.
    The wheels are just for the picture. Crankset, Headset, Seatpost, and Forks are coming with the frame. I'm so excited to make a bike out of it!

    He said he had to make a headset press because his wasn't long enough, which surprises me because 270mm isn't that long.

    The colors aren't the best matching, different shades of grey and black with silver here and there. But I want to be able to keep this bike forever (not get stolen) so anything flashy or too matching is a no-no. The decals aren't my favorite either, but I feel like the only thing I'd like more than how it is would be no decals at all, but I want to advertise his bikes!

    I'm curious as to how it'll feel pedalling almost a full inch wider diameter with these 180mm cranks...

    Oh and here's another link to the album with all the images he's sent me.
    http://imgur.com/a/fnCzQ
    Last edited by Bardleyrichard; 04-21-13 at 02:58 PM.

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    "I hate my saddle to handlebar drop, it's incredibly far for comfort, but a taller stem, even 140mm, feels weird as it cramps my arms even closer to my torso. I pretty much only ride on the flats now anyway, because of this problem."

    OP; I have to assume that this comment is related to your current/old bike....or I hope so (otherwise you should discuss asap with your builder).

    BTW/1; A 140mm stem is not taller, it is longer. The one shown on your old bike shows this. Your new frame design should be such that a stem in the middle of the range will fit and fit you (assuming you haven't stated a requirement for it to be otherwise).

    BTW/2; The likely issue with your arms being cramped into you torso is probably caused by your existing bars being too narrow. "Wobbly" is also an effect felt by narrow bars. Suggest look for a pair of old Cinelli track bars as they came in crazy wide widths and are very open to let your chest expand, leading you to breath well and deep even when deep in the drops. But they are not for anyone riding upright much. The distance between my shoulder joints is 18 inches on center so I mostly rode 44cm width Cinelli track bars (my LBS owner recommended them upon measurement/fitting and had Mel Pinto import them for me; circa 1974-75). You might need a 48cm width, if that is even available. Your builder should be able to whip you up a set of bars to match your physique or source them if already being produced commericially(?). Bars are just one additional topic to cover with your builder.

    BTW/3; Are you also considering longer cranks, heavier wheels, a bit bigger tires, longer CS's to clear your heels, etc.? Just a thought.

    FWIW; If the pix at http://i.imgur.com/UyQE0K6.jpg reflects the progress to date on your frame, then it looks very nice and well proportioned to your stated size. When you ride it for the first time, you will likely completely forget the old bike. Put that thing on Craigslist and take whatever you can get for it and don't look back.

    Please post progress as you proceed. I suspect Gene is way ahead of you and will make you an awesome bike.

    /K

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    OP; Saw your comment: "He said he had to make a headset press because his wasn't long enough, which surprises me because 270mm isn't that long."

    - Most of the off the shelf headset presses would be unable to squish your headset in due to inadequate length. I think there is just one brand that offers an extension piece, but it may not be the brand your builder already has and the price for the piece is a series bite...
    - One can just make another entire tool for about $15 which seems to be what your guy did. PM me for pictures of a XXL long one if desired [. Mine will easily handle 375mm headtubes, but I had to mod it yesterday to support installation of the "FSA Pig" 1.125 inch threadless headset as it has a huge lower cup to support 1/4" bearing balls. The original tool's lower plate was a huge washer (made for a 3/4" machine bolt) that just fell into the middle of the Pig's lower cup so the modification made out of a piece of 1/8" plate steel became necessary. The plate ($4.75) was found in the decking materials section at the home store and already had a hole in it, requiring just a few file strokes to open it up enough to fit the diameter of the threaded rod I had started with. Did the job very well.

    Hope that helps
    /K

  24. #24
    babylon by bike Standalone's Avatar
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    My 66x58 cm Panasonic, set up for a 6'4" rider whose height is mostly in the legs:

    The bicycle, the bicycle surely, should always be the vehicle of novelists and poets. Christopher Morley

  25. #25
    Mmmm vegetables
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    Here's a crappy phone pic of its current state. I'm still working on the stem reach and rise, but this'll do for now. The saddle sucks, too, so I'll be swapping it out soon.

    http://i.imgur.com/MR8vnrt.jpg

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