Friday, October 28, 2011

Polishing fillet brazes.

I just thought I'd do a post on what goes into polishing the brass brazing on a bike - it's tons of work as the brass is a pretty damn hard alloy, especially as the rod I use contains Nickle.
My take is that you either have to polish the entire bike or not at all (if you are a good enough brazier to pull that off) as if you just go 1/2 way it looks like a hack job, which it most certainly is......
Here, the area has been just brazed and needs to be soaked overnight in a dunk tank to not only remove the flux on the outside but the flux on the inside as well.

Here it is all free of flux but for the most tenacious flakes.
A nice braze, you could just spray a powdercoat and a clear on that and run it, which I offer, for less then a fully polished bike, and you will see why in the following pics.

First, some noisy ass grinding with an Aluminum Oxide point - Al-Oxides are better known to many as Corundum and with impurities as Rubies and Sapphires.......Some of the hardest elements we know of due to their tight molecular structure.

To look perfect and blend seamlessly one needs to have a nice uniform radius which compliments the area you are polishing. Here the weapon of choice is a snap-on rat tail file.

Here I have went over the area I am working on with these files - a 10" rat tail bastard (yep - cool name!) a 8" 2nd cut half round, and the tiny snap-on rat tail.

Now I hit it with some 3M 80 grit emery paper to see how it's all blending together.

Any small details which stick out are massaged with a Grobet riffler file.

A final hit with the 80 grit and it looks really sweet!

.........Just knock out the entire frame to that finish & you are ready for braze-ons!
- Steve.

Monday, October 24, 2011

getting on getting on.

Justin's frame, just needs a ton of polishing and a handful of braze-ons. A nice bike!

I may be a slow builder but my stuff is straight. It's an aspect of the job I quite enjoy.

Finishing spearpoints + the eyelets I added on before the dropouts were attached.

Natural puddle, just faceted.

As-brazed. There's over 1/2 a rod of brass in that end & all the others as well.

As-brazed, de-fluxed.

Ditto here - that's money.


Checking clearances. That's a panaracer 32.

Looking good - the dot is perfect center. just needs a little lovin'.

Seatstays at the get-go.

......and all fixtured up. Time consuming stuff.


Frame # 25 from 2004 back for a little repair - a stick-to-derailleur incident in WI. Off to get the area blasted and get a whole new dropout.

I got out for a nice ride but also popped a rib! *#**#!!! ouch!

it hurt so bad I was barely able to finish the ride. yelps of pain, and I'm pretty F'ing tough.

Not bad! at least I got in one fall ride. Barely saw anyone but we did see a big fat black bear run all the way across a big open meadow - cool.

Grovel in beauty. Hozho'ji.

Glory from on high.

Working hard on Justin's "Stuart" frame and fork before starting Douglas H's project.

I gotta rethink the "Stuart" frameset, they will likely go up ( A "Stuart" is a full braze-on light tour/fender/disc 700c bike) as they are TONS of work!

Just cruising along, getting a good stream of orders, just got three orders in three days from three continents - Cool & Thanks! - Steve.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

JF's bike coming along.

Justin F's frameset coming right along, as the title says. Nice and uneventful, just how I like'em.

An off center miter in action.

Just a hacksaw & a couple of files.........and allot of practice.


........clean, clean, clean.

Front triangle straight, damn straight.

Cyphering, tube blocks, measuring instruments and vent holes.

Whole tubeset + finished fork at the get go.

Nearly finished fork. Just needs a couple more touches.

getting lugwork pretty well down.

Just a quick check in on metal work - thanks for reading, all!!!! - Steve.

10th anniversary river trip!

Just back from a five day paddle on the mighty Colorado! Much fun was had.
I sent this picture to Sea Kayaker magazine this morning and the editor told me if I had shot it in high-res I would have scored the cover shot - damn!

D. throwing some casts in camp.

A blue heron. I like to fish where the birds do - they have it down.

Floating into camp in fading light.

Small kayakers on the lower left.

Again - big walls, small boat.

The nicest fish I've pulled out of the Rio Colorado in around five years.

Barry & Eugene came along for laughs.

The sun peaking over the rim.

Lovely Wife puttering around camp.

A hell of a beauty caught by D. back in the drink!

Modern dinosaur holding court while resting one foot. One can see why my dad used to refer to these as "shit-a-quarts"

BW & EC cruising in the shade.

Euge's first kayak trip.

"the tooth" AZ'a largest free standing spire I have heard.

Nice fish! Paddle blade for scale is 22" long.

A fitting celebration for ten years of marriage. - Steve.