24 February 2012

Blue Skies and Sunsets

Cyclists on the entrance to the Steel Bridge crossing and East Side (Vera Katz) Esplanade
Today the Portland weather forecast was for partly sunny/cloudy weather.  When I opened the door to get the newspaper, it looked dry.  An hour later, I still got soaked by a sudden rain shower as I rode my rental bike to UBI.  But after that brief shower, it was all sun and blue skies.

Today, I learned that for me just about everything else about building a bike frame is easier than TIG welding.  Brazing is a lot easier.  It is also a lot dirtier.  Soot from the acetylene, acid-based flux that gets on your hands (and into the cuts and nicks we all have at this point).

Today, I prepped and brazed on my seat stay bridge, my rear cantilever brake posts, rear rack bosses, water bottle bosses, cable stays on the top tube for my rear brake, cable stay on my drive-side chain stay for the rear derailleur, and stays/adjusters on the down tube for both derailleur cables.  Plus two more bridges -- one for the rear cantilever brake cable, and one on the seat stays that has a boss for attaching a fender.  Plus drilling holes for the water bottle and other bosses, vent holes, etc., then checking frame alignment and width of drop-outs, and finishing work on the seat and head tubes and bottom bracket.  We "chased" the threads on the bottom bracket and smoothed both faces, also cut and smoothed both faces of the head tube,"reamed" the seat tube so it will actually fit a 27.2mm seat post, and punched a hole in the back of the seat tube about 20-25mm below the top.

I was done with everything except for the finishing work on the tubes by early afternoon, and emerged from our classroom/shop to find a beautiful day.

The only thing left for tomorrow is to cut a slot from the top of the seat tube to the aforementioned hole, and then sand off some of the excess silver that is brazed to the frame and do some clean up.

I am really happy with the result.  Cannot wait to get it painted (I hope while I am still here in the U.S.) and then to build it up, after my return to Japan.

Suggestions for paint schemes (2 colors max) are welcome, in the next 16 hours.

Suggestions for names are also welcome.  Maybe Portlandia?
In Portland, a stationary bicycle is a "plug out" instead of a "plug in" piece of equipment.  This building (eco FLATS; Hopworks Bikebar) has solar on the roof, so it must have "net metering" and be able to sell back to the grid.   

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