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Saturday, 26 January 2013

The highs and lows of building the DMO element..........

So the week just gone has seen the highest highs and the lowest lows yet of my frame building experience...

Last Saturday I was happily brazing away, adding the final finishing touches to the frame when I rather unfortunately managed to stick a red hot brazing rod to my lower lip - to date this is the single most painful injury I have sustained whilst building the Element frame.

Having finished the brazing it was time for a final fettle of each of the joints, 7 hours later I had a frame which was looking pretty much done. Next up it was time to think of how to fix the misshapen headtube - a job which if I'm perfectly honest I had been putting off!

So to try to re-shape the headtube I decided to make a stainless steel bung which was .25mm undersize - which I could then press into the headtube from each end.

So I made the bung at work and then plucked up the courage to take it out to the shed and try to re-shape the headtube.

To start with I caked everything in copper slip and then found out that the headtube wouldn't fit in my vice! So, essentially in desperation, I dragged the lump hammer out of my toolbox and went to work. To my amazement the bung went in really easily and square. Next up was to get the bung out - and again, to my surprise it came out pretty easily - why had I put off doing this for so long - it was easy!!

Next up I had to re-shape the lower end of the headtube. Same again the bung started going in easily, but then I heard a weird ringing noise. Another hit, another resonance of this weird noise - then my heart sunk. I've broken one of the internal cable routing's off in the top tube %$^&***&&^!"£$!!! - I thought.

By this point I had gone so far so my only option was to continue. The bung again came out easily, but while I was knocking it out something metallic hit the floor - by this point I was starting to think I must have done something bad to someone in a previous life!! 

I thought I had knocked off one of the braze ons - but a quick inspection showed them to all be still in place. Then I looked at the frame and noticed one of the bottle cage cap screws had fallen out - and then it dawned upon me - the resonating noise must have been the capscrew loose in its boss - happy days - the internal cable routing's had not broken!!

As it turned out the press tool worked a treat and I now have a headtube round enough to press the headset into - result.

All that needs doing now is a final fettle and polish and shot blast ready to send to Brian Rourke cycles for painting.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Olly, the frame looks fantastic. Can't wait to see it at the bike show.Be sure to head round the corner for a croissant at www.hartsbakery.co.uk :-)

    Well done mate - what are you planning next?