The North American Handmade Bicycle Show is like the Summer Solstice of the framebuilder’s year, and the 2015 edition is almost upon us. This year promises to be the biggest yet and is heading to Louisville, Kentucky.
For the past few years, we’ve been lucky enough to have a sneak peek at what Paul Brodie, patriarch of modern mountainbiking and master framebuilder, will be exhibiting. Ladies and gentlemen, Cycle EXIF is proud to unveil the Brodie Tourer.
Paul teaches Bicycle Frame-Building 101 at Canada’s University of the Fraser Valley and, in keeping with tradition, has generously taken the time to provide an insight, from a builder’s and teacher’s perspective, into the work that goes into making a custom frame such as this. Let’s get into it:
“Many months previously, using the rotary table on the milling machine to hold the head tube lug while the 1/2” endmill is used to rough cut the shape:
“Close up shot of the manual milling operation; getting close to the red felt pen line traced around the cardboard template:
“Using a hand-held 3/4” belt sander to get the final shape right:
“Brazed into place with a 1/16” nickel silver rod; you can also see the fillet braze holding the top tube:
(photo courtesy Asad Masede)
“The rack tubing is 1/2″ 4130 cro-mo with an .035” wall. Very nice CNC bend job by Pacific Bending. Thank you Andrew.
“No jigs, so this is free-form fabrication. Here a C-clamp holds 2 aluminum plates, and cardboard shims hold the little tube in place for Tig-tacking:
“Machining custom cable guides from 6061 billet; they will be fastened to the frame with 3mm s/s button head allen screws:
“The head badge was machined and hand-carved from 6061 solid:
“Paint by Paul… base-coat with a couple of Imron clear coats:
“Same logo as in 1986…
“Frame #4265 was constructed with Columbus tubing and a Tange Concept seat tube:
“Little braze-ons with 3mm allen screws to mount the computer sensor inside the fork leg:
“The front end has a Hope disc brake, 203mm rotor, and 15mm thru axle:
“The rear end has a Rohloff 14 speed internal hub with a 180mm rotor / Hope brake:
“The rear rack holder was formed from 1/8” aluminium flat bar in a roller, then cut out and shaped:
If you’re fortunate enough to be heading along to the NAHBS this year, make sure you stroll past Booth #215 and say hi to Paul. Yes, “Frame #4265” refers to the four thousand, two hundred and sixty five frames that he’s built over the years. Ask him if there’s any vacancies left in his UFV course.
Massive thanks to Karen Massier for the fine photography.