Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A little bending fun...Steve's retro 29er

Hey folks,

Another rainy day in big Woo, so it was a morning of office work, talking some details with upcoming frame customers, and then getting off the ground on Steven's retro inspired 29er...yeah!

I've been anxiously awaiting this project, as this is a bike that I too have longed to build.

Steve rides the tight, rocky single track of the east coast and wants a retro inspired 29er that is suspension ready to handle the difficult trails with flair. So what we are building is an early 1930's inspired cruiser, with a few modern twists. The 29er will be a steel geary with disc brakes, vertical drops, and a dark fire truck red with white stripe accents. I'm planning on doing some interesting twists...like using an ovalized bent top tube that will allow for piercing by the seat tube, working with some different seat stay arrangements, and a few little accent touches. Anyhoo, this is what I'm looking at for inspiration...
To get started, I decided to tackle the bent top tube for the project. To accomplish this, I broke out the home made roll bender that the Brown Brothers and I used when we were fabricating custom choppers a number of years back.

As I wanted the tubing bent and ovalized, I put in the 1.75 dies to roll out the 1.125 top tube...as the tubing is pressured upwards by the jack, raising the cradle dies, the die walls, being of greater diameter, allow the tubing to displace laterally a skoosh while stretching the top aspect of the tube. This should give me the shape I desire...
And wahlah! A gently curving top tube that is dead sexy in it's oval profile. The lateral width gained by the ovalzation gives me enough space to pass the 1.125 seat tube through it, giving the intersection a seamless look that will be a subtle aesthetic. This look also pays tribute to one of my personal favorite vintage frames...the Goat Deluxe.
From the top, you can see the nice contour the tube has developed...should look killer once it is in place on the frame.
I can't wait to begin putting this one together...who knows, I bent enough tubing for an extra frame as well ;) . Gotta be some benefit to having all these tools.

Tomorrow, I'm gonna work on prepping the other tubes for the build, then have to wait a bit for a few special parts to arrive before hitting it hard.

No slacking for me though, I've got plenty of Ti Luvs to weld in the interim.

Hope all is well with y'all,



rmb said...

Can't wait to see this one.

MMcG said...

I predict this one will turn out wicked nice! Rody - could this bender also be used to bend seatstays? If so, let me know at mmcg25 AT gmail DOT com

OldNSlo said...

Wow, this is going to be an awesome bike....can't wait