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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 12-14-06, 05:31 PM   #1
pirate
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Lug separation/Is this frame a deathtrap?

So I've been riding my conversion for 4 or 5 months now, and I noticed recently that the headtube/downtube lug is seperated from the downtube on one side. I also notice creaking sounds coming from the front end of the bike when I'm in the drops or on the hoods. I bought this frame used and I don't know its history, though it was pretty apparent that it had had the **** beat out of it. I crashed it maybe 3 or 4 times, though not very severely. Is the separation becuse of sloppy brazing or from crashes and abuse? Will this frame catastrophically blow up under me while I'm cranking up a hill or skidding in traffic? I am somewhat sentimentally attached to this frame because it is pretty and my first conversion and all, but I will can it and replace if the frame is unsafe.

pics- they suck because my camera sucks.

you can fit a piece of paper this far under it.


thanks- pirate
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Old 12-14-06, 05:32 PM   #2
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oh yeah, you can see paint on the tube under where the lug would sit.
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Old 12-14-06, 05:38 PM   #3
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i wouldn't ride it..but that's just me...and my regard for my face.
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Old 12-14-06, 05:40 PM   #4
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SKETCHY
DO NOT ride it
the good side of this however is, that thing is very fixable especially nice if you are attached to it. Any good steel framebuilder should be able to fix it up no problem.
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Old 12-14-06, 05:41 PM   #5
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PS
If you need any names PM me and I will let you know
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Old 12-14-06, 05:44 PM   #6
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if you keep riding that frame either 1- the lug will crack off and you'll hopefully have a strong enough mitre still underneath that you can ride it to the framebuilder's shop or 2- a crack will develop in your headtube itself and you'll have to walk it to the framebuilder's shop. #2 happened to me. but it will fail, and from the looks of that bottom picture, it will fail soon.
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Old 12-14-06, 06:32 PM   #7
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No way, just JB weld it and stick it in a vise.
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Old 12-14-06, 06:37 PM   #8
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There's only one way to find out if it's a deathtrap. You updated your will, right?
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Old 12-14-06, 06:38 PM   #9
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we get more than a few fubared frames coming into my shop, this would be one of them. The creaking is the scariest part, as it's an indication that shyat is moving freely up there. Ditch it and start anew.
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Old 12-14-06, 07:38 PM   #10
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Its on its way to be dumpstered then. Its not worth taking to a framebuilder.
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Old 12-14-06, 07:48 PM   #11
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I highly doubt that the frame would fail catastrophically, it would probably just feel all off and wonky and loose up front before it completely separated.

Even if the down tube were to completely separate from the lug, there is still the top tube to hold things together.

If you want a cheap fix, go to a welder, and have them lay down a nice ugly bead along the lug and tube- you said it was a junky frame, right?..should only cost like $10 or a something like that..
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Old 12-14-06, 07:49 PM   #12
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in short, yes it is a deathtrap.
as for repairing it, i'm not sure if it's worth it. if it's creaking, it most likely means the tubes are moving at that junction, and they may have caused further damage to that joint in places that you can't see. take it to a framebuilder, but my guess is it may be time to hang her on the wall.
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Old 12-14-06, 08:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonFixed
I highly doubt that the frame would fail catastrophically, it would probably just feel all off and wonky and loose up front before it completely separated.

Even if the down tube were to completely separate from the lug, there is still the top tube to hold things together.

If you want a cheap fix, go to a welder, and have them lay down a nice ugly bead along the lug and tube- you said it was a junky frame, right?..should only cost like $10 or a something like that..

Doh! and all this time I've been riding these bikes with a crazy extra tube holding the headtube to the frame.
PS. you can't lay down a weld, ugly or otherwise on top of braze.
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Old 12-14-06, 08:18 PM   #14
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PS. you can't lay down a weld, ugly or otherwise on top of braze.
Is there braze on top of the lug, in the gap created or on the tube?

Worth a shot.

My comment about the top tube was to demonstrate that if the down tube does separate from the lug completely, i.e it is "free" the whole bike won't just crumple immediately..so you'd be able to stop riding before things seriously got bad.

I'd ride it.
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Old 12-14-06, 08:52 PM   #15
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yeah, I have to ride it for another week or so.

Its a good excuse for me to buy a new frame though.
yay shopping for bikes!
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Old 12-14-06, 09:35 PM   #16
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Since you have to ride it for another week, I'd put a rear brake on it and just use that. Less strain on that lug.
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Old 12-14-06, 10:01 PM   #17
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Just put a ratchet strap between the head and seat tubes and crank'er tight!!!
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Old 12-14-06, 10:02 PM   #18
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c'mon! it is a conversion, right? a little red loctite and a BB locking and away you go!!!!

(be safe and have it repaired before you ride it anymore)
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Old 12-14-06, 10:24 PM   #19
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I wonder if JB Weld would actually work. Epoxy seemed ok for those lugged alu frames.
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Old 12-14-06, 11:38 PM   #20
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I know what would work... a rotafix joke!
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Old 12-14-06, 11:53 PM   #21
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You could always drill a hole all the way through and bolt it... I was kidding, but it kinda makes sense...
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Old 12-15-06, 01:07 AM   #22
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save it for a talldeathbike!
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Old 12-15-06, 09:29 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pirate
Its on its way to be dumpstered then. Its not worth taking to a framebuilder.
I'll take it if you're throwing it out
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Old 12-15-06, 02:02 PM   #24
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i can't really tell from the pictures, but i don't think the frame developed this gap..
more likely that it was just a poor brazing job from the start and the builder did not completely fill it out to the shoreline

are you sure the creaking is coming from this joint and not the bars/stem ??
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Old 12-15-06, 03:36 PM   #25
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thats kind of what I thought, because there is some paint in the gap. It is a really cheapo frame too, so it wouldn't be suprising. Would that mean the frame is ok or is it still sketchy?
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