Thursday, January 17, 2008

Magura Firm Tech brakes...the Anti Christ?

The final piece of the puzzle for Roy's bike, the Magura's a brief run down of the Saga thus far...
- Contacted by Roy to utilize these ground breaking (pun intended :) )brakes on his new frame

- Contacted Magura USA and asked "hey guys, can I get a set of these with the required dimensions for mounting"
- First response...NO, these are for our suspension forks only and cannot be fitted to a frame
- Second response...Oh, all right, we want to support the small builder, we'll send you the brakes and info
- Two weeks brakes or info, call again. They forgot to process the order.
- Two more weeks a package in the post, very happy! Wrong brakes, very sad.
- Another call...Me -"may I talk to Austin, this is in regard to the Firm Tech brakes", Magura -" Oh, Austin quit. You can't get those, they are only for use in Europe." Me - "these will be used in Europe", Magura - "I'll talk to Germany and get back to you."
- Weeks pass again
- Another call..."Magura will sell you the brakes if you will buy a case" (that's 100 pairs), No thanks!
- Roy buys the brakes from across the pond and sends them to me, yeah! Parts are missing, whaa!
- Roy gets seller to send the parts, they arrive two days ago, hurray!
-Call Magura..."hey guys, I need the dimensional specs for the mounts, are you ever going to send the info?" Their response, "No, we don't have it." Hmmm...I thought they manufactured the damn things?
-Set upon the path of reverse engineering the mounts based on the brakes in hand.
So, yesterday, I spent 5 hours making the prototype mount. Why so long, you ask. Because nothing in custom frame building goes as quickly/smoothly/efficiently as you want it to when you are doing something out of the norm, and this project has had a few of those criteria.

These mounts have eight different dependant dimensions, what that means is that all the dimensions are related to each other, if one is off, the mount will not function correctly. The first proto mounted up well but then the post alignment for the quick release was off by .010", enough to gum up the whole shebang...back to the drawing and the mill.

Eventually I got the design nailed down, three more hours saw the balance of the pieces fabb'd up, then the next issue arose...the brakes were designed around the spacing of a wide suspension fork and cannot be milled/mounted for a more narrow space. Some of the new forks use almost 5 inches of space between the centerlines of the legs, I built Roy's fork with a traditional 4 inch centerline. So, what's that mean for us? I have to build another fork for Roy with wider leg spacing to accommodate these brakes. Once again, a step that could have been solved with appropriate dimensional info.

So, the good news is that despite Maguras proclamation that it cannot be done and refusal to share any dimensional info, we succeeded! I'll eventually post the required fabrication info on the web so future builders who wish to use these brakes will have the info in front of them. The brakes work VERY nice and are rim crushing strong. Good brakes, bad customer service/support.
So, here is a little something special for Magura...the onion ring of NO'ness!
Pretty cool ring I got with my supper tonight. I thought about selling it on Ebay, ya know, kinda like the piece of toast with the virgin Mary on it, but decided to keep it for "future use" instead :^) .



steve garro said...

wow, rody.......way to take one for the team! steve.

Rody said...

Yeah Steve, seriously puts the custom in custom frame :)

Now on to a nice simple build...ahhh!


OTK said...

Hallo Rody,
can You send me the schema of Magura Firma-Tech holder?

Thank You,


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