When I was stationed in Cleveland, I had the pleasure/opportunity to meet Joe Bringheli. Not only did I meet him, but he mentored me on building my own bike frame/fork.
Over a period of a few months (don't recall exactly how long), I went over after work and on weekends and worked with Joe in his workshop. We discussed everything from tubing to lugs, general and specific to what I wanted. Once my tube choices were made (Dedaccai Zero Uno), we went to the workshop and I did all the cutting and filing of the tubes. We used one of his older jigs. We did the fork first, then on to the frame.
I did some of the brazing myself (under Joe's watchful/critical eye), and in the end I had an absolutely beautiful lugged steel frame bicycle, made by myself (but mostly by Joe!).
Unfortunately I transfered to Mississippi soon after that (for 1 year) then on to Alaska for 4 years...but I still have all my notes and pictures taken during the build. I will post some pictures here once I get back home (at work now! )
Yes, Joe can be stubborn to work with...that's what I liked about him. Tons of character, incredible amounts of knowledge, and a great Italian accent. He's a great guy!
Anyone else learn (or observe) under a small professional framebuilder? What's your story about it?