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Another Raleigh "Post Friday Lunch" Brazing Job

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Another Raleigh "Post Friday Lunch" Brazing Job

Old 07-21-12, 11:47 AM
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Another Raleigh "Post Friday Lunch" Brazing Job

This one is so bad it is actually made me laugh out loud. This is a 1971 Raleigh Competition frame i recently got from CL. It had been re-painted at one point and looks pretty rough. While tearing it down I saw what I thought was rust bubbling under the re-paint where the seat tube enters the bottom bracket shell. I took a wire brush to and and found this:

[IMG][/IMG]
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[IMG][/IMG]

Wow! How many pints were had on this day's lunch?
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Old 07-21-12, 12:06 PM
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Wow.

The shop I worked at when I was much younger stocked Raleighs.

Although the bicycles often performed quite well, we would constantly be amazed by the gaps in the brazing around the lugs.

Especially in the rear drop outs.

Happened far more often than you would think.

From the bottom of the line up to the top, many were afflicted by the "Friday build" issue.

Yours is a doozy though and I can't imagine it came from Raleigh that way.
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Old 07-21-12, 12:10 PM
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I highly doubt that it came like that from the factory. Stevie Wonder could of brazed that better.
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Old 07-21-12, 12:12 PM
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I think it is more likely that it came from Raleigh with the usual after-lunch brazing skips, and some amateurish zealot with too much brazing rod felt compelled to effect a "repair".

(In any case, it adds a bit of visual interest!)
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Old 07-21-12, 12:35 PM
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There appears to be a chunk of lug missing.
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Old 07-21-12, 12:52 PM
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I agree that brazing was done post factory build when the original broke. Roger

Last edited by rhenning; 07-21-12 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 07-21-12, 01:53 PM
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I hit it with a file and found a lug. I did not find any obvious signs of damage.

[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
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Old 07-21-12, 02:00 PM
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+1 on "it's a repair" Now lets pull the Raleigh workers out from under the bus with some pictures nice brazing jobs
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Old 07-21-12, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by fender1
This one is so bad it is actually made me laugh out loud. This is a 1971 Raleigh Competition frame i recently got from CL. It had been re-painted at one point and looks pretty rough. While tearing it down I saw what I thought was rust bubbling under the re-paint where the seat tube enters the bottom bracket shell. I took a wire brush to and and found this:

[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]

Wow! How many pints were had on this day's lunch?
I wonder if this was a repair job on a cracked BB shell prior to the repaint?

Addendum: indeed, your post-cleanup pictures appear to show a brass-filled crack:



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Old 07-21-12, 02:23 PM
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I vote repair too, note how the brazing material visible on the adjacent joints is a different color. I remember that these frames (the main triangle at least were brazed up not sequentially, but concurrently.
The way the brass is applied says to me that the joint was w/o much additional flux if any, and the guy hoped the brass found its way in.
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Old 07-21-12, 02:28 PM
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Repair....and a terribly bad one. Why the extra bead stock, anyway? Horrible. I do better than that. This begs the question as to what the problem was in the first place....and down there in the BB main lug??
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Old 07-21-12, 02:41 PM
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I don't remember that they came from the factory with the cable guide brazed on. Mine is a bolt on.
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Old 07-21-12, 02:44 PM
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That's a repair following a crack at the BB shell, not factory work.

If you want to see some lousy factory work, ask forum member Michael Angelo to post some photos of the brazing he and I found under the paint of an early Super Course. It looked as if half of the job was done in brass, and the rest in copper. None too well either, no matter what the material.

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Old 07-21-12, 03:40 PM
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Well, if the consensus among the smarter folks here is that it is a repair, then my apologies to the good folks at Raleigh! As for the repair, what should I look for to determine if this is worth keeping? I rode it around the neighborhood prior to the tear down and it handled fine. The previous owner said he had it from the late '70's. So if nothing is obviously wrong, than it would seem that it is OK? Until it cracks again........

Oh an here is a nice Raleigh just set things right.
[IMG][/IMG]
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Old 07-21-12, 05:11 PM
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From what I've read about breaks at the seat tube/bottom bracket junction, the failure mode is fairly benign, you probably won't completely crash & burn if it fails again. The sticky bit comes when you eventually resell it - you disclose the repair and price it accordingly, the buyer promptly "forgets" to disclose the repair and resells it for full price. There are probably some creative things you could do to reduce the likelihood of that scenario if it would weigh heavily on your conscience...
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Old 07-21-12, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888
That's a repair following a crack at the BB shell, not factory work.

If you want to see some lousy factory work, ask forum member Michael Angelo to post some photos of the brazing he and I found under the paint of an early Super Course. It looked as if half of the job was done in brass, and the rest in copper. None too well either, no matter what the material.

-Kurt
Copper is one of the main ingredients in brazing rod, when the braze is overheated copper separates out from the other metals.

Much stronger repair method for the OP frame would be to remove the bottom bracket, completely clean and sand out the inside of the seattube down to fresh bare metal and then braze a short repair sleeve into the inside of the seattube, working through the BB shell. If you leave the sleeve protruding past the end of the seattube a tiny bit, it is pretty easy to get the bronze to wick up into the tight gap and inbetween the two tubes and distribute all throughout the cracked area of the seattube.

Last edited by GrayJay; 07-21-12 at 05:43 PM.
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Old 07-21-12, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by OldsCOOL
Repair....and a terribly bad one. Why the extra bead stock, anyway? Horrible. I do better than that. This begs the question as to what the problem was in the first place....and down there in the BB main lug??
I think the seat tube socket on the BB shell cracked all the way around the seat tube. I've seen this happen before with those bulge-formed BB shells. IMHO, the best fix is to sweat the old shell off the frame and replace it with an investment cast shell, but it's a lot of work and not necessarily cost effective except on pretty high end frames.
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Old 07-21-12, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by GrayJay
Much stronger repair method for the OP frame would be to remove the bottom bracket, completely clean and sand out the inside of the seattube down to fresh bare metal and then braze a short repair sleeve into the inside of the seattube, working through the BB shell. If you leave the sleeve protruding past the end of the seattube a tiny bit, it is pretty easy to get the bronze to wick up into the tight gap and in between the two tubes and distribute all throughout the cracked area of the seattube.
Chances are the seat tube itself isn't cracked, just the shell. At least that's what I've found on the ones I've repaired.
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Old 07-21-12, 07:32 PM
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Of course that is a crack repair done down the line, not from the factory (not that that they did not do some shoddy work at the factory). I had lots of frame, etc. repairs like that done by somebody's Dad "who could weld" back in the Sting Ray BMX days.
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Old 07-21-12, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson
I think the seat tube socket on the BB shell cracked all the way around the seat tube. I've seen this happen before with those bulge-formed BB shells. IMHO, the best fix is to sweat the old shell off the frame and replace it with an investment cast shell, but it's a lot of work and not necessarily cost effective except on pretty high end frames.
Short of that, just ride it?
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Old 07-21-12, 07:56 PM
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Repairs aside, my checklist for all things vintage goes something like this:

Is it from the 70's? ----> Is it British? ----> APPROACH WITH EXTREME CAUTION

Quality control took a dive in many industries in the latter half of the 70's - not only in the UK but in most of the western world. I've seen Sturmey Archer and Torpedo guts from 1957 looking brand new next to identical models from 1977 with equal mileage.

I sometimes wonder whether the infamous 80's were in fact the golden age for the European family car. Competition from Japan had driven build quality up and prices down, and most were still built on tried and tested principles (carburetors, no ECU etc.) making them perfectly serviceable for the average handy-man. Kinda like the 80's were the twilight years of steel bicycles with classic geometry.

Sorry for ranting. Maybe I derailed this thread back to its mistaken roots
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Old 07-21-12, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Velognome
+1 on "it's a repair" Now lets pull the Raleigh workers out from under the bus with some pictures nice brazing jobs
Asian Raleigh.
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Old 07-21-12, 08:24 PM
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Here's some quality Notingham "Ale House" brazing.













It took a few day of sanding and filing to get the lug work presentable. Here it is now being built up. It's a gift for my kid Brother.

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Old 07-21-12, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson
Chances are the seat tube itself isn't cracked, just the shell. At least that's what I've found on the ones I've repaired.
That description of the crack makes sense now. If the seattube itself is not cracked through, adding a large external fillet braze all around the cracked joint would likely be functional and could improve over the existing repair appearance.
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Old 07-21-12, 09:54 PM
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Asian Raleigh.

Yes, I know

Last edited by Velognome; 07-21-12 at 09:58 PM.
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