Fillet brazed Deda Zero 26er.

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Fillet brazed Deda Zero 26er.

This came out well, it’s a tight, snappy frame, the type of frame where every push on the pedals makes the bike go only in one direction, foward.
Dedacciai Zero is Light, stiff and the perfect choice for a XC bicycle.

I believe wheel size should be proportional to body height, and have no problems offering mtbikes from 24″ to 36″, with everything in between. That’s why I’m a custom builder, to build what you want.
it was a joy to file, the large radius curves are like being on holiday after holding riffler files for hours on end for lugged frames.

There’s been a surge in work, it’s normal, it’s spring, everyone wants their bike ready as soon as the weather gets warmer.

So I apologize if blog posts lately have slowed down, it’s to enable me to tackle the backlog.

Click on the pic for the flickr set.

Deda, mtb fillet brazed, tubi ultra oversize per questa mtb leggera, agile e rigida pur con la caratteristica comodita’ dell’acciaio. Un’ottima scelta per coloro che coloro che amano andare veloci e lontani.
cliccate sulla foto per il set su flickr.

Do Framebuilders dream of chrome sheep?

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The forks in the picture are from the same year, I don’t know the year, but an educated guess would place them in the mid 80s.
So we have two thirty five year old forks, both used in the same way (we supplied the frames and forks to various local teams, as sponsorship). Both stored in the same place.
One is chromed, the other is painted.

You can see pinpricks of rust on the chromed fork, similarly, there are very small rust areas where the paint was scratched.

Both forks are fine, usable and safe.
The chromed one will clear up beautifully with some steel wool and oil, the painted one will look good with some wax, but the scratches will remain, so will the pinpricks of rust on the chrome fork, for that matter, though less noticeable.

I asked an engineer at Columbus on their take, I was on the phone to them for this month’s order, so I took the opportunity to ask.
They don’t advise chroming, not because of the chrome, that actually does protect the outside of the tube, but because of the acid used to prepare the item.
The acid dries, and is harmless, but when water or moisture gets into the frame, it hydrates the acid, that then does what acid does, corrode.

Hundreds of thousands of frames have been chromed, and a lot of them are still with us.

I don’t use it on my personal frames as it’s not the most environmentally friendly process in the world.

It also adds a not insignificant cost to the finished frame.

I use stainless in the same way chrome was used, to avoid paint being rubbed off, on chainstays, on fork tips and dropouts, on braze ons.

However, if you take care of your steel frame, it will outlast you. Chrome or no chrome.

So if you like chrome, that’s fine, on the right frame it looks gorgeous.

If you want to know more, I suggest , more than you’ve ever wanted to know about how to coat metals, lots of good advice and some good articles on chrome.

La cromatura.
Centinaia di migliaia di telai e forcelle sono state cromate, ci sono motivi per credere la cromatura sia dannosa?
La Columbus non consiglia la cromatura, l’acido usato per preparare il telaio finisce dentro, e puo’ danneggiare il telaio.
Ma in ogni caso, se vi prendete cura del vostro telaio d’acciaio, durera’ piu’ di voi.

Qui abbiamo due forcelle, per dei telai che abbiamo dato a una squadra qualche anno fa.
Una verniciata, una cromata.
Non direi ci siano grosse differenze, presentano ambedue leggeri fiori di ruggine che non compromettono per niente la sicurezza. Della lana d’acciaio e polish e ambedue tornano quasi come nuove.
Preferisco usare l’inox, al posto della cromatura.
Ma la scelta e’ vostra.

Framebuilding supplies, going cheap!

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Framebuilding supplies, going cheap!

As you can imagine, a factory that’s been working since 1949 has a lot of stuff hidden away.
Some of it is very rare, like this campagnolo dropout that bike lovers will recognize.
Some is simply not going to be used.
So instead of gathering dust here I thought I’d clear out some framebuilding supplies I’m not going to need.
I put the pictures in this set, in flickr, framebuilder kit.
There’s everything you need to build a frame, prices are reasonable, and shipping is at cost.
I accept payment via paypal, and can ship via a courier or via the post office.
I have all the tubing you’ll ever need, flux, brass and can have some tubing blocks made locally.

You can do a lot with some time, a file, hacksaw, a vise and a lot of patience.

So, if you’re reading this because you’re thinking of building your own frame, my advice is simple, start now, don’t dwell, you’ll understand so much by doing, it probably won’t come out great, but you’ll have tried, and the second will come out better.
Tubing is 2.5euros per tube, I have 25,4; 28,6; 31,7 unbutted Falck tubing, it’s around 70cm long.
We used it for years to build our city bike frames, it’s not fancy, but it works.
A full frame and fork set, with flux and brass, is about the price of the campagnolo dropout in the picture.
click on the pic to get to the set with all the brazeons you’ll ever need.

Kit Telaista,
Ho molto materiale qui, una fabbrica che lavora dal 1949 accumula molte cose, alcune sono trovate eccezzionali, come questi forcellini campagnolo, altre sono materiali che sinceramente non useremo piu’. Per cui abbiamo pensato di dare la possibilita’ a chi volesse cimentarsi nel mestiere del telaista.
Per il prezzo di questo forcellino campagnolo, potete comprarvi tutto il necessario, incluso disossidante e materiale d’apporto, per un telaio.
La tubazione e’ Falck, una tubazione italiana nelle misure 25.4; 28,6; 31,7mm. La usavamo nei modelli da citta’, e’ una tubazione onesta, non vincera’ il tour, ma funziona.
cliccate sulla foto per tutte le foto.

Columbus MAX bottom bracket thoughts.

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Columbus MAX bottom bracket thoughts.

It’s a shame such details should be hidden away, the 28mm chainstays and downtube wrap around the BB, meeting at the halfway point.
Some builders prefer to use a bb30 when using max chainstays, it makes it easier to miter, but I prefer BSA bottom brackets, they’ve proven their worth and aren’t going anywhere.
This one is Italian threaded, It’s also a lugged bottom bracket shell, so The mitering is easier.
To do the same on a fillet brazed frame would take a lot of time, and even more skill.
So as I’ve got a Life/max road bike coming up, well, that’s what I’m going to do.
Nobody spends much time looking at the bottom of a bike, it’s true.
The only reason is because it looks right, though it will take a lot more work.

That’s reason enough.

As a friend of mine says: Do the right things, and the right things will happen.

That means making every single bike as if it were for me.

Which, in a sense, they are.

click on the pic for the max fixed gear set.

Columbus Max, ecco come si presenta la scatola movimento, ed e’ un’idea che voglio riproporre anche nei telai senza congiunzioni.

cliccate sulla foto per il set del telaio max da pista.

What’s this?columbus Max mistery pic.

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What's this?columbus Max mistery pic.

Well, it’s just a tease. But I’m sure you’ll like it…
click on the pic for the columbus max set

strani e meravigliosi dettagli del telaio columbus max da fissa…
non cambiate il canale!
oppure cliccate sulla foto per il set su flickr.

Perspectives, Sundays working and Bicycles.

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Perspectives, Sundays working and Bicycles.

Well, I love working on sundays, no phones, no doorbells, just some music and the birds not knowing it’s sunday.
I was thinking about system integration, building a bike as a system, rather than building a frame. A few french constructeurs took this to a very high level, Campagnolo had the commercial insight to produce a gruppo, that is a complete drivetrain package. Shimano took it a step further with SIS, now Sram is taking that even further with dedicated front and rear hubs.
What does this mean?
To me it means treading very carefully. As much as a steel frame can be updated as time goes on, I’d rather try walk that thin red line between new standards that become obsolete next season and being a retrogrouch, as if 6 speed friction shifting was all everyone ever really needs.

I build custom frames, that means I can do nearly anything (as long as it’s being paid for).

It’s also a responsibility:

To guide my customers towards solutions I know work, and will work for them.

To Imagine how people will grow as cyclists and build that into the frame.

To know how components are changing, and try and anticipate problems.

I want to keep my frames on the road, or on the trails, as long as possible, to do so while looking ahead, and not behind me, is a great source of pride.

The thinking part of the pride I take in my work, because as good as the filing and brazing is, it’s useless if the bicycle isn’t out there, doing it’s job of bringing you joy and freedom.

On the sundays that you ride because I’ve been working.

Beati voi che siete in bici mentre io sono a lavorare! Godetevela.

Judgement, perspective.

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Judgement, perspective.

This was supposed to be post comparing chrome to paint. But I haven’t thought it out enough to condense it. So I’ll spare you for now.
It did make me think of perspective, and mistakes.
Mistakes, we all make them. Learning from your mistakes, that’s the gift every mistake gives you.
Thinking about how to translate this quote, I thought about the Rumsfield quote: Reports that say there’s — that something hasn’t happened are always interesting to me, because as we know, there are known knowns; there are things that we know that we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns, the ones we don’t know we don’t know.

—Donald Rumsfeld, United States Secretary of Defense

That translates the essence of the phrase.

Gentili, e pazienti, lettori italonofoni, eccovi qualcosa in italiano, per una volta.

Revanchebikeco, the only cycling blog that gives you the inside look at framebuilding, obscure literature, and ronald dumsfield, all in one post (and without offending anyone). Stay tuned.