Tiptoeing Forward: CX Frame Build, Part 9

This weekend of framebuilding didn’t quite go down as planned. When I got to work, I just wasn’t quite in the zone mentally, and based on past experiences, I know that’s when stupid mistakes get made. So I decided to spend my time conservatively — not rushing, and to focus on what I could do with my mindset being what it was. So, you know, not much. While I am supposed to take the occasional day off from my Adderall, today probably wasn’t the best day for that.

First things first, I started off by doing some alignment work. The front triangle was only off by a hair over a millimeter, so I decided to go ahead and run with it. The next step was to get the chainstays into place where they needed to be. That’s done — they pulled inward a couple of millimeters, and it was primarily the drive-side where that was an issue. A couple careful pulls, and it was right where it needed to be. Lastly, wheel twist — when the wheel was in-place, it was pretty obvious that the chainstays were slight out of alignment. A few twists and shoves on the rear wheel while it was in there, and all was right with the world. I spot-checked myself with the H-tool (see the main image above), and everything looked legit. Pretty dang pleased with myself.

Knowing that the next major step on the frame is the seatstays, I went ahead and started laying the groundwork for installing those next week. First things first, I started finishing up the filet where the seat tube and the top tube join. I want this looking as clean as possible, since the seatstays are going to connect up to the same spot.

Then I started to prep the seatstays. I did some mockups and get the slots cut where they’ll be brazed to the dropouts. Next week, I’ll be mitering them for the part where they meet the seat tube, and if time permits, brazing them in. The goal is to have super-clean miters that I can silver-braze instead of fillet-braze with bronze. I want them to look like they plug right into the back of the frame.

Next Steps

  • Install the seatstays, as detailed above.
  • Quick alignment check on back-end.
  • Install chainstay bridge, maybe seatstay bridge, too. Need to decide on styling of the latter, and soon.
  • Finish head tube fillets. I may try to sneak this in before my next workshop session.

There won’t be a session next weekend, as I’ll be out-of-town for a wedding. So maybe I should make those fillets a priority, huh?

More Images

Fillet brazing.
Starting to finish the fillet.
Checking Frame Alignment
Checking the frame alignment by looking at the relationship between the wheel and the seat tube.
Using the H-Tool
Using the H-Tool to align the dropouts on my CX frame.
Finished Fillet at Top Tube/Seat Tube
The ST/TT fillet, about 98 finished. Just a few small pinholes to fill with 56 silver.