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Building up a bonded aluminum frame... (is it worth it?)

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Building up a bonded aluminum frame... (is it worth it?)

Old 03-19-16, 07:27 PM
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Building up a bonded aluminum frame... (is it worth it?)

(Reposted from Road Cycling sub-forum: recommended to post here)

Hey there,

So first some backstory...

I've ridden road off and on for the last few years and never really stuck with it. Liked my Giant Defy, but sold it (absurdly) and didn't really care for any bike I bought since then.

Bought a used '91 Trek 1400 as a cheap weekend bike to ride when I felt like it, and my plan back fired on me. I fell hard for the bike and have been commuting on it about 50% of the time and doing some weekend rides. I absolutely love the bike.

As much as I love the bike, it's got a couple of quirks. One of the DT shifter bosses is broken off, and a problem solvers clamp on unit has been installed. Plenty functional, but ugly as sin.

Also, the hubs are Dura-Ace. Great! Except for the rear has a uniglide freehub that makes cassette swaps less than ideal (but doable).

I got to thinking...

Since I'm smitten with the bike, would it be a bad idea to try and find a similar frame to build up? Like another 1400 frame? Or does the fact that these are inexpensive bikes with bonded frames, make it so it wouldn't really be worth it?

Thanks.

Also, I posted in the mechanics forum that I've found some cracking on this frame as well. Looks more likely to be paint but I'm not sure.
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Old 03-20-16, 06:37 AM
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My understanding is that Trek paint was less flexible than the frame but that they eventually fixed it. I've got a size 54 '87 1200 F,F & HS that has some garage rash but very few miles if you're interested.
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Old 03-20-16, 08:14 AM
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Thank you so much for the offer. Alas I need a 58. I'd be on it if someone had one though. Obviously with both shifter bosses intact.

Thanks for the info.
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Old 03-20-16, 08:38 AM
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Nothing wrong with those frames. Some very early ones had a couple of issues, but not the 1400's.

My friends and I had a street hill-climb on one of the first ones by Trek, and yes, we broke the bottom bracket.
Not, though, in the place you showed in your pics. I think that's paint cracking.
Trek replaced it free, but the shop had to eat the swap labor.
While this was taking place, we did it again on another bike. Trek backed it up.
Same bike shop refused to sell me a Trek Aluminum until the issue was corrected. I ended up with a steel one.

I see no problem with the bike, and I'm fairly certain the early problem was caught by Trek and completely fixed.

I am currently building a bonded aluminum frame (tubes, stays, fork legs) and have plenty of confidence in it.
Also, I once wrecked a Raleigh Technium, also alulminum and bonded, and it did not break at the bonds, even though it was toast afterwards.
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