Wade has been a vibrant member of many of the frame building forums for a few years now and after a bit of soul searching, decided that his educated profession of legal work was not gonna satisfy his need for fulfillment. What is to be the object to fill that career void? Building frames, he doth say :)
So with much public encouragement, Wade embarked on a journey to build his first frame; a Columbus Spirit tubed frame with Richard Sachs lugs. Constructing his steed in Texas under the watchful eye of Glen, he returned with a riding manifestation of his work and sweat.
Wade contacted me about painting up his frame, as I do paint work for a few other builders. I told Wade that he would learn much more about framebuilding on a professional level if he were to come and experience the process himself. As fewer builders today do their own paint work, I thought this would be an opportune time to give back to the community with a little mentor ship, as I was so generously shared with in my learning years.
I started the day EARLY so that I could finish many of my projects and devote my attention to working with Wade.
When Wade arrived from the state of Tennessee, we got to work cleaning up and prepping the frame. As this was Wades first effort, he really focus'd in on making it just right before sealing it up forever in a coat of finish work; shorelines to be filed, areas to be sanded, etc.
We worked late into the night, Wade on his project with me checking in every so often. After 2 hours sleep, I was back in the shop for Groovy Stuff and Wade met me around 8. It was back on the frame. We set a deadline to move to paint before Friday rolled away from us. After taping, blasting, and then blowing off the frame, it was into the booth and begin masking off the stainless dropouts...
Three thin coats of primer followed, with Wade diligently sanding between each application.
Then the real work began. Wade wanted to run with a three color finish, painted on graphics, and highlights in the lug windows. As we were using a white finish, the tiniest overspray would stick out like a bloody nose, so the mask-a-rama began. Overall, the frame was fully wrapped and masked three different times; that's a LOT of paper and tape folks. The final color coats revealed a Carrera white base with royal blue panels and orange bands/highlights. Here's Wade diligently handpainting in the lug windows...
A short night and then we worked right up to Saturday at high noon, when it was time for me to run off to Vulture's Knob to prep for the final Groovy Series Race.
Wade's frame then received three thin coats of clear, to give some depth and glossy protection to all the hard work...
I enjoy sharing the process of building with others, both in person and through the blog. I've always tried to be totally transparent, sharing both successes and failures in the shop to give folks a honest taste of what the process is all about. I've been both criticized and applauded for that by others, but in the end, if one person is able to walk away with information that aids them, makes them smile, or helps them drift off to sleep faster :) , I'm a happy guy.
As of yesterday, I'm another day older, hopefully wiser, and due for a new driver's license ;)
To celebrate, we'll be running a contest over the weekend for some schwag...make sure to check back in.