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Bent frame opinions wanted

Old 08-06-11, 03:27 PM
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Bent frame opinions wanted

I went out and straight edged my Tommasini Diamante frame. I couldn't detect any issues on downtube.

Top tube looks to have a little bow. Measuring from the top, I couldn't see a gap. However, measuring along the bottom, I could. Tough to get pictures, but this is the worst.

The max point of the gap I can get a .005" feeler gauge through with some friction. There is no visible buckling. At one point on the downtube I can feel a very slight wave.

Opinions?



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Old 08-06-11, 03:34 PM
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So long as it tracks true I'd skip it.
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Old 08-06-11, 03:38 PM
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I doubt it being bent that little would affect anything.
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Old 08-06-11, 04:03 PM
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This is the one you got in a head-on on the MUP awhile back? Such a nice frame, I would get a new fork for it and ride it, which I think Tommasini still sells. Better if you had a fork already just to try it out for tracking, etc. Maybe get a cheap road bike fork to try it?
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Old 08-06-11, 04:10 PM
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If this is the "head-on" frame would it be worth finding a framebuilder who could check it out in a jig for you before going through the trouble of finding a fork? If anything it might put your mind at ease.
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Old 08-06-11, 04:20 PM
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Actually, I'm selling it on that place that can't be mentioned. One user suggested that i take these sorts of pictures and post them, which I did. Which also got me curious and optimistic, actually, although I'm not one to judge. I got in touch w/some framebuilders locally, didn't seem like anyone was available for diagnosis, at least w/out big packing/shipping hassle.

Yeah, Tommasini still sells the forks. They are rather light-weight for steel forks, in this case the forks were crushed, my opinion is that they acted as a crumple zone and protected the frame from really serious, obvious damage.
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Old 08-06-11, 04:24 PM
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All in all I have seen some riders having one hell of a good time on beat to hell bicycles - This one looks great and If this bike rides good it Max No Difference...

But then again I to am one of those guys that even if a defect is not visible will some times have one hard time tolerating it if its there...

I am not sure I would take a straight edge to any of my bike frames... HA...

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Old 08-06-11, 04:29 PM
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Oh yeah, this was the MUP head on bike. A year on, some of those 9/10 broken ribs still bark rather vigorously once in a while, though the broken collarbone hasn't been heard from lately. As for the concussion, well, I'm not sure I'm any more (or less, sadly..) daft than previously.
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Old 08-06-11, 07:25 PM
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I was going to say "buiild it up and ride it!" because I think you are the only one who can judge if it's as good as pre-crash or not. I am sure I mentioned this before, but my brother had a Miyata that he loved, and he crashed it and bent the frame ever so slightly. The bike shop applied that Park tool, like the one Kurt has, and fixed it so you couldn't tell it had ever been crashed. But my brother never liked that bike again. I honestly don't know why that was; perhaps the only thing warong was in his mind.

Still... if you're not going to build it up and ride it? I don't know. I am in no position to judge.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:08 PM
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I think your ad should disclose the information you've just told us. Otherwise, it doesn't seem honest to me.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
I think your ad should disclose the information you've just told us. Otherwise, it doesn't seem honest to me.
Of course I have.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:26 PM
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That much of a crack and on the bottom of the top tube ? Perhaps most/all tubing is like this ? Perhaps the tubing when welded together was oriented like that intentionally because it makes no difference that way ? Effectively, a bow on the sides might indicate a frame turning a direction either way, but top & bottom, it's straight enough. Even on the sides, is it within tolerances of steel tube manufacturing specs ? I'd measure other bikes and if it's found to be the case across the board, it can't be a real problem ?
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Old 08-06-11, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuckk
One of my frame books includes testing the top tube for bow before building the frame, and arranging the bow up when you jig the frame.
exactly what I implied in my prior post.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by robatsu
Of course I have.
I stand corrected. Sorry.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by fuji86
That much of a crack and on the bottom of the top tube ? Perhaps most/all tubing is like this ? Perhaps the tubing when welded together was oriented like that intentionally because it makes no difference that way ? Effectively, a bow on the sides might indicate a frame turning a direction either way, but top & bottom, it's straight enough. Even on the sides, is it within tolerances of steel tube manufacturing specs ? I'd measure other bikes and if it's found to be the case across the board, it can't be a real problem ?
Fresh out of the box, most bicycle tubing is more-or-less perfectly straight, ie. when you roll it around on a flat surface there's no detectable runout. I have actually built a frame with a tube bent by about that degree, only noticing well after the frame was done. It doesn't affect the bike at all, but it's still a little annoying. Since that episode, I have rolled all new tubes on a flat granite surface. I've only had one tube show any noticeable runout since then, and it was replaced by the wholesaler with no questions asked.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
I stand corrected. Sorry.
NP.

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Old 08-07-11, 12:33 AM
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I read your ad, and it seems to me you've done a pretty good job of telling the buyer what he's getting. Ebay is gambling, for both the buyer and the seller, whether we admit it or not; this seems to be one of those rare cases where we admit it.
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Old 08-07-11, 12:54 AM
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Originally Posted by rhm
I read your ad, and it seems to me you've done a pretty good job of telling the buyer what he's getting. Ebay is gambling, for both the buyer and the seller, whether we admit it or not; this seems to be one of those rare cases where we admit it.
Thanks. I'm no big time ebay seller, but I've found that forthright descriptions go a long way towards keeping my ebay life simple. This is as much in self-interest as it is in some sort of abstract ethics. Dealing w/an irate buyer who feels like they've been misled is not my idea of a fun aspect of what is supposed to be an enjoyable hobby.

Early on, I missed some issues on one or two items and I just refunded the money and let the buyer keep the item anyhow & let that be a lesson to myself to carefully go over stuff.

For this frame, if I were shady, I could easily have sold it w/out comment on its history and had a very high probability that most buyers would never have noticed anything. I took closeups of the minor paint distress that makes it really clear, but you'd never notice it if you weren't specifically examining it in pretty great detail. Again, I'm not setting myself up as some saint, I just want peace and quiet in my life. So even though my amateur opinion that this frame is very likely ok as it is, some buyer later on deciding his lovely Tommasini frame had a history doesn't fit that peace and quiet model.

I've actually learned a lot from this exercise about how to rapidly and closely scrutinize a frame. I'm getting a lot of queries from guys w/tools like Kurt. I think that some of them may end up a bit disappointed that the frame isn't bent out of spec and needing some gentle mercies.

Last edited by robatsu; 08-07-11 at 12:59 AM.
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Old 08-07-11, 05:08 AM
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In leveling my frames to measure geometry, I've seen different top tube angle measurements depending on where I place the level, and as far as I know and can detect, these frames have not been crashed nor show an signs of crashing. Some have been aligned by a frames expert. I don't consider it a problem.

Side note, I don't know why a Tommasini fork would have less integrity than a Masi, Mondonico, early '80s Trek, or any other traditional steel fork. I think that having the builder's original geometry and aesthetics would trump, well, whatever makes you think they are inadequate. But, why do you think a Tommo fork might not be good enough?
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Old 08-07-11, 03:56 PM
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Tubes can measure straight even though the head tube lugs have been stressed and pushed in changing the head tube angle. Looking at the photo's on your _Bay ad I say this may be the case. The top lug looks pretty stressed. Cameras can always make a straight line look curved but the downtube lug does looks bent in and the hairline cracks do support that. I can't say for sure as photo's can make things appear curved.

The only way to really know is to put it on an alignment table and accurately measure, 2nd best is to build the bike and ride it like others mention. If the front tire is close to the downtube like the way a track bike looks is another indicator, a road bike gap/overlap shouldn't look like a track bike.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Road Fan
Side note, I don't know why a Tommasini fork would have less integrity than a Masi, Mondonico, early '80s Trek, or any other traditional steel fork. I think that having the builder's original geometry and aesthetics would trump, well, whatever makes you think they are inadequate. But, why do you think a Tommo fork might not be good enough?
Maybe I didn't word that very well. Maybe I should have said lightweight racing bike fork to be clear, all of which quality brands are fine for their intended purposes. But that doesn't really included head on crashes and I think it is safe to say that a lighter weight fork will suffer more injury in this sort of event. We've all seen pics of bikes w/really stout forks after an accident where the fork transmits a huge amount of damage to the main triangle and the fork gets off relatively easy.

In this case, the forks actually have a big crease in them and were very bent. If anything, this is good, albeit perhaps unintentional, design, it is far less trouble/cost to replace a fork after a crash than the frame, so long as the fork is strong enough to stand up to normal usage.

And just one more time for the record, I don't think Tommasini forks are in any way inadequate - rather, they are works of art. It isn't like anyone is designing their forks for this sort of abuse and I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of other fork/frame combinations would end up with the same distribution of damage.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_macgee
The only way to really know is to put it on an alignment table and accurately measure, 2nd best is to build the bike and ride it like others mention. If the front tire is close to the downtube like the way a track bike looks is another indicator, a road bike gap/overlap shouldn't look like a track bike.
I definitely agree with the jig approach. I couldn't find a local framebuilder who had bandwidth/interest & didn't want to go through a shipping/packing cycle. Building it up and riding it is good enough for me, but not objective enough for assurances to a buyer. I had a Tommaso I rode for a number of years, got in a couple of minor accidents that didn't seem any worse than some rash. But then several years after the last accident, I was stripping the bike down and found a classic underside of downtube bubble. But I never noticed anything wrong about the bike before that.

I actually almost threw this away a couple of times. It has been a slow recovery at my age and just tossing this frame is a lot easier than other alternatives, including selling it. I hardly need $100/$200 that it seems like it may go for and what I need even less is an ebay buyer feeling he has been misled or ripped off. So to be honest, I was hesitant about selling it w/the uncertainty that surrounds such a sale. But each time I went to throw it away, it just seemed such a shame for such a beautiful frame that may well be fine but even if not, may be salveagable, and even if not that, some wall hanging somewhere. I finally concluded I wouldn't ever just put it in the trash and I didn't have the energy to deal with the other options, so let someone else w/more energy/interest deal with it.

What has been interesting is some of the messages I've been getting from buyers/lookers. There is clearly a not insubstantial group of people who would like nothing more than to have a shot at a top end frame like this with their Park frame tools and the idea that this frame may be bent not only doesn't slow them down a whole lot, it is why they are interested in it. I may end up being the first guy in ebay history to have a frame returned to me, get abusive low feedback, because the frame isn't bent.
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