Cutting Steel: CX Frame Build, Part 3

Welcome to the third post about my ongoing process of building myself a new CX/gravel bike.  Things are underway.  The real fun started on Saturday afternoon after an unexpected delay (last week’s session getting cancelled), and in the time I had available, I managed to get some solid work done.  (Photo: roughed-in miter of the top tube where it meets the seat tube.)

Back to Basics

It would have been easiest to just do this up on the mill, but given my desire to hone my skills over the next couple of years and take another crack at framebuilding once my head is on straight, I’ve opted to go back to the old-school route of cutting my miters by hand.  I started with the seat tube/bottom bracket miter first, and it was slow going — a combination of rusty skills, hacking away at a .9mm wall thickness with hand files, and aiming for a level of perfection not generally achievable with hand files made it slow going.

After that was done to a satisfactory point, I moved on to getting the top tube done.  Based on my increasing confidence, and the thinner tube walls, this went a lot faster.  The miter where it meets the seat tube is complete, and the miter where it meets the head tube is largely complete.

Next Steps

  1. Miter down tube.
  2. Prep head tube and bottom bracket.
  3. Put bottle mounts into seat tube and down tube.

Typography and Graphics

Like you’d expect, I’ve changed the graphics/typography for the frame.  Because this is what I do.  Never satisfied.  Which is crazy because this frame is really just a test article that I’m going to beat to death.  I plan on a single-color powdercoat with cut vinyl decals atop it.  Anyway, I decided to use a Chank font for the main logotype and use Bank Gothic Medium for the supporting graphics.

Screen Shot 2015-03-22 at 11.27.42 AM


So that’s where things are currently at.  I’ve also got a great design for a minimalist head badge, which I’ll probably spend the money on having made into an actual badge by Jen Green.