About Me

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Mountain Home, Arkansas, United States
My name is Dimitri Harris and I have been building frames for over 6 years now. I learned the basics after spending two weeks with Koichi Yamaguchi. He is one of the most interesting people I have ever met and I am thankful to have worked with him. Since then I have just been building one frame after another and learning as much as possible along the way. I build steel fillet-brazed frames that go by the name of MEECH, its an old nickname that I have had since I was a kid. I build mostly cyclocross frames because I love their versatility however I also do road,single-speed, and mountain bikes as well. Custom frames start around $1400. All the frames are handmade by me here in Mountain Home, Arkansas. I am insured and guarantee all of my work so if you are in the market for a custom steel frame I would be glad to build it for you. I am also building frames from carbon fiber so if you would like to ride a prototype frame give me a shout. Thanks for stopping by. You can email me at meech151@hotmail.com or call (870)897-6703 or visit www.meechcustombicycles.com Thanks.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Saturday, November 14, 2015

El Don Quixote

Here are a few pics of a touring frame that I finally got finished.  I was afraid that the temperatures needed to paint had left the area however my shop seems to heat up fairly well when the sun is out even when the temps are a little low.  Guess the shingles on the roof soak up the sun pretty well.  I stuck a little space heater out there and during the highs of the day got it up to a solid 70.  I really hadn't planned on painting but I just had a day to work and went for it on all fronts. 

I've talked about winging-it on some paint jobs and this was the first one. I truly had no idea how I was gonna paint this frame.  I had colors, schemes, and ideas going through my mind on a daily basis, mainly at night before I went to bed, and on occasion I would even wake up in the middle of the night thinking about it.  I recently had a new logo designed by a buddy, Vince Pearcy of Vince Pearcy Signs, and I was itching to use it. We worked together on it for a few days and he finally dialed it in to a level of "purely stoked". Thanks Vince!

"So D. How did you finally decide on how you would paint the frame?" 

It's funny you asked. The night before I painted it I was lying in bed with colors going through my head and eventually just fell asleep.  I had a dream that night that I was riding a horse through the desert by myself. There was nothing spectacular about the dream, just me on a horse walking through the desert.  As I was drinking my coffee that morning I was recollecting the dream and wondering what brought it on.  At first I thought about Clint Eastwood movies, but I hadn't watched any for quite some time so I didn't really feel any connection.  Then, straight out of nowhere, Don Quixote entered my mind. I'm honestly not sure that I've even read the entire book.  I've read bits and pieces and seen various artists do painting of him but I really didn't remember much at all about the story. I thought a Don Quixote theme on a touring frame was a great idea however I thought that maybe I should read the book first.  Then I thought, "Naw, I want to paint it today.  Maybe I'll just go get the  Cliffs Notes. Naw, screw that as well."  So I just sipped my coffee, scanned a couple of pics and pieces of the novel, and in true MEECH fashion just flew by the seat of my pants like El Don himself.

And so it is.

I had more fun painting this frame than any other frame that I've worked on.  I had every can of paint that I owned opened and on the table and was mixing, matching, unmatching, and basically just doing anything that crossed my mind.  It was almost like being on auto-pilot. I knew painting a horse on a bicycle tube would not be easy, as painting tubes is one of the more difficult things you can paint, but I didn't let it stop me, I just followed through with the plan of not having a plan.

Laying down the base was super-fun and easy as well.  It was all just an even flow and I seemed to be building momentum with each passing moment.  Actually, after having the base colors laid down, I stepped back from it and thought, "That's beautiful just as it is. It had sort of a tiger-stripped pattern out of gradually progressing colors.  For a moment I though, "Just paint the logo on it, clearcoat it, and be done."  But would Don Quixote wuss out?  No way. So I started trying to paint some main characters and realized that I had embarked on something a little more difficult that I imagined. I painted everything that I had planned all the way up to el Don himself.  I then stepped back and looked at it and felt as though I may have to bail on the entire idea, scuff it, and repaint it.  I hit a point where I thought I wasn't gonna be able to pull off the main character and his horse. Without that the paint already laid down was nothing. But then I realized if it didn't meet my expectations I could redo it anyway and at any point.  And so I painted on.  I managed to paint Rocinante, Don Quixote's horse, on the top tube but then I had no idea of how I was gonna paint el Don on the horse without destroying messing it up.  The whole frame was almost finished but the main man was nowhere on the frame. 

"Just make it happen."

Couldn't wait to shoot the photos so the frame is badge-less at the moment, but that'll change shortly.

Hard to tape off fork crown.  Bought this crown and the wishbone crown in the rear from Strawberry Cycles.  

The lovely princess Dulcinea.  Dulce loosely translated mean sweet.  Kinda like calling someone "Sweety" or "Honey".

El Don himself.

His trustworthy accomplice, Sancho Panza.

La Mancha, Espana is where the story takes place.  Not too far from the region of Spain that I was in.

Chain stays turned out nicely.

Extremely hard to tape off. Really didn't want to paint it but I knew I had to.

New MEECH logo designed specifically for the new, no-ideas, paint schemes.

Can't wait to paint another.

Thanks for stopping by.

meech custom bicycles

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Interesting Tire Info

I knew the moment I spun out of the neighborhood last summer on my new Schwalbee Duranos that I was having to push harder. It felt like my brakes were dragging the rim.  This proves it.  Last place. But they have been bullet proof when it comes to flats.  I give 'em that.


Monday, October 19, 2015

Dedacciai Carbone

Got a little present in the mail today from Bringheli.  A box full of sweet Dedacciai carbon tubes.  I've been planning a carbon frame for quite a while but I'm just now getting into a position in order to work on it.  Actually I have a touring frame I need to get painted and I wanted to build a mountain bike frame myself in order to have something new to ride this winter. The way things are going now I'll probably pick up a used motocrosser before I get the mountain bike done.  I wasn't kidding when I said I had the itch to ride. I just have to wait till the timing is right.  I actually found a friend who is interested in sharing a bike.  How smooth is that?  Since it probably won't get ridden that much might as well split the cost with someone else, huh? We only have one rule.  Whoever breaks it fixes it.  Simple enough, all sure, no? All we have to do is sign in blood.  What I think we're gonna do is shake hands in blood, kinda like Josey Wales and chief Ten Bears did at the end of the movie.

"Don't cut your throttle hand D!"

Don't worry.  How stupid do you think I am?

"I reckon so."

What were we just talking about?

Ah yeah, carbonification.  All of these tubes have some shape to them.  I've done the round tube bit before and while these tubes definitely cost more, they'll make a much nicer frame.  The down tube is massive.  It's really bigger than what I wanted.  I'm not really into these carbon frames that have huge crazy-shaped tubes but premade carbon tubesets are hard to come by unless you get your own made. I like the more traditional looking carbon frames like  the Time frames, the Scott Addict, and the Cannondale EVO. Also love the Look 595 frameset. That was one frame I always wanted to ride. It was next on the list before I started building. I prefer modern frames that have some traditional characterisitcs. But it is what it is and we'll just see how it comes out.  

The seat tube is pretty sweet.  Has a wheel-cutout integrated into it as well as a flat wall for the derailleur mount.  Don't forget the widened bottom bracket end. I asked for a matte-black finish but for some reason the seat tube showed up with a gloss coating on it.  Who knows but I already have plans for it.  I actually got a secret plan for the finish on this frame. When you see it finished there won't be any doubt that it's a MEECH.

One head tube is the Dedacciai and the other is my homemade one from a while back.  I'm not even gonna ask if you can tell which is which.  Mine is the one that weighs twice as much. I was actually surprised that the Dedacciai head tube was as light as it is.  It almost felt like I could squeeze it in my hand.  Mine on the other hand is overkill because it was my first one.  It's also a bit larger diameter because the bearing cups are made by Cane Creek, but for the most part it appears as if they were made on the same type mandrel.  I could make mine smaller but I need access to the bearing cups.  Dedacciai probably wins this battle, unless we were building a mountain bike, then I think I'd feel better about mine. If it was a sword fight..., well then, it'd be like a triathlete fighting Evel Knievel.  Evel would just take his walking cane and knock  their head off and tell them to put on some real clothes, and ones that fit.

"Where did all this animosity come from D?"

I'm sorry.  I don't really know.  I think I've just been so pent-up lately. I've got so much energy that I can't get rid of.  I may have some issues that crazy paint schemes can't cure. Bare with me or bear with me.

Mine is roughly twice as thick as the Dedacciai.  I also used some fiberglass on mine to keep the cost down while experimenting, which it appears like they may have used one layer of glass as well. Glass is a little heavier than carbon. The next one I make I'll shave some grams off.

Well, this concludes my Monday night post.  I think I'm gonna go out in the shop and punch on the heavy bag and try to curb some of this aggression, but first I'm gonna go eat a Nutty Buddy. 
Thanks for stopping by. Buenos noches!

Seen It All Now!

I have the coolest riders in the world.  Love you all!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Paint Work on MX Helmet

I've had the itch to play around with some painting ideas and so I got out the old motocross helmet, sanded and primed it, and then gave it the old college try.  Believe it or not, there was actually a Troy Lee Designs paint scheme on this helmet before I painted it. Yep, you heard me correctly,  I sanded down and painted over Troy Lee's work.  While the original paint scheme that he had done was pretty nice, for some reason it never really felt right to me. He kinda missed what I was trying to achieve.  But that's ok.  I wore the helmet many years and was tired of looking at that old paint job and decided to give it a MEECH makeover.  In some ways it turned out better than I expected but the whole  Toxic Orange bit on the front kinda disappointed me.  I should've just went with the free hand over the entire helmet instead of trying to mix it up. I can always repaint it again but for now this is it.  I don't have a motorcycle to ride at the moment but I've had a real bad itch here lately.  I have a MX track so close to my house that I can hear them riding on the weekends.  I've been over there about once a week since moving back to Jonesboro.  I even bought a pair of boots the other day off of  Ebay.  I think I've officially entered my mid-life crisis. Not sure how this is gonna play out over the next few months but the MEECH Custom Bicycles blog could turn into the MEECH Bicycles and Motocross Bikes blog.

You can see where I peeled the Troy Lee sticker off the visor.

Not a very good picture here because of the flash.  I had no plan at all as to how I was gonna paint it other than I wanted a yellow base. The rest is just picking a color and a brush and having at it. I did all this paint work with 3 different brushes and I didn't reduce the paint because I thought it might dilute the colors, so there is a little bit of texture created where the paint was a bit thicker. Normally I believe everyone uses an airbursh for jobs like this but I prefer the raw look of bristles.  For the most part it's pretty smooth. Next time I may reduce it a little and see what happens. Like my friend Bob Davis always says, "At 100mph no one will ever notice. 
I had intended to have the MEECH logo painted across the back in black but I was short on time and ready to finish it up.  I'm ready to let go of my hands on a bike frame.  Shouldn't be long.  I've got a touring frame sitting in the shop that is awaiting a fork and then I'm gonna have at it.  I got some new epoxy primer to try out as well.  Supposedly it's some hot stuff.  We'll see.  Thanks for stopping by.