About Me

My photo
Back in my hometown of Jonesboro., Arkansas, United States
My name is Dimitri Harris and I have been building frames for over 9 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, which is 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 Jonesboro, 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, July 28, 2011

Vanstone's Red Rocker

Here of some shots of RV's road frameset.  His frame arrived promptly yesterday and as soon as Ryan had opened it up and gave me the 'ok' I was ready to show this one off.  This frame is constructed out of True Temper OX Platinum like most of my frames and the  fork is Easton's top of the line.  I have already talked about the stem made from Paragon Machine Works components and you've seen the raw photos but the painted version is even better.  Paul from Ace's Wild Custom laid down the paint in classic style.  Its hard for me to believe, but out of all the frames I have built I had yet to paint a frame red.  I painted a couple that were shades of red like a burgundy and a couple had red logos but nothing had been painted Ferrari red.  I had been wanting to for quite a while and finally I got to do it.  I love it and I can see more red in the future. Ryan hails from the Austin area, which has an unbelievable custom bicycle population, so I am very happy to have one of my frames rolling in their streets and I hope to send more there.  Thanks Ryan.
MEECH Custom Bicycles
Handmade in Mountain Home, Arkansas

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Clean Slate

Thank goodness the Tour de France is over.  Man, I didn't feel like I was getting anything done for the whole month of July.  It was an excellent race this year, and I think most people were happy for Cadel Evans but I'm ready to start a new project and  right here on the table it is.  I did manage to get a couple things done.  I finished up my first 29er and I should have some pics of that shortly, and I just shipped off RV's road frame which turned out excellent but I promised not to post any pics until after he has seen it so hopefully in a couple of days I can post those.  The carbon frame is just sitting over there in the corner waiting to be finished and things keep coming up that take precedence.  When I said I hoped to be riding it in the spring, I unintentionally meant spring of 2012.  The year 2012 just sounds like something futuristic, like some movie preview you saw when you were a kid in 1975.  Does anyone know how to slow things down a bit?  If you do please let me know.  Anyway, this fresh batch of tubing is going on a, yep, you guessed it, a psyclocross frame.  The "Pain Party" is looming in the background and I plan on having someone on the starting line on this frame.  I already know how its gonna be painted.  Allrighty then, let the transformation begin. I just realized that there are no fork blades in this photo.  Pfff, wheres my phone?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Take that Clown!

While Alberto might not have won the tour at least he got one good punch in.  This clown deserved it.  Now he needs to turn around and bruise Captain Moron on the other side. Viva el Pistolero! 

Friday, July 15, 2011

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Whole Lotta Rosie - GN'R Sydney 2010

Monday July 11-Some Days Are Just Fluxed Up

It all started with this sexy rigid White Brothers fork thats been laying around my house for months now.  I started to just sell it but I knew it would look great on a custom frame.  What kinda frame though?  Well, obviously its gonna have to be a mountain bike and with all that space between those long carbon legs I guess it needs to be a 29er.  But I don't even like mountain bikes that much any more, especially 29ers.  I have never owned one or even ridden one for that matter, they have never interested me in the least because I'm a roadie and a backseat driver cyclocross racer. Well if you've never tried a 29er Dimitri how would you know if you like it or not?  Thats what they told me about things like broccoli and liver and i hate both of those. So anyway I have this fork and I had some beautiful steel Paragon dropouts w/disc tabs so I drew it up according to a popular geometry because I have no idea how this thing is supposed to ride, I've just always heard that they plow over everything that gets in their way, maybe thats why I don't like'em.  I didn't even have a mountain bike wheel for mock-up purposes but luckily 29er tires fit nice and snug on a 700c wheel, the hub spacing is off by a shade but not enough to hinder things.  So I went and bought my first ever 29er tire, didn't care what kind, just the cheapest one they had.  When I unrolled this thing it was like a flemsy motocross tire, I think I used to run this same exact tire on the front of my RM 125.  So I mounted it, looked at it, measured it, and thought,"Fitting this between those chain stays is gonna be a pain in the arse.", and I hadn't a clue about what kind of seat stay I was gonna use.  The goal was to use stuff that I already had lying around and not go buy any special stays.  So I tacked the chain stays in place and there is sufficient space for your average mountain bike tire but there isn't just gobs of clearance and I really don't care because I prefer bikes that are a bit tighter and as far as maximum mud clearance goes, well, I'm not really worried about what pigs have to say about my frame. I think clearance is overrated just like stiffness, to a certain degree they both are beneficial but I think there is alot of overkill. I don't like mudd or anything else that slows me down. I like riding on dry, fast, hardpack terrain, like Carlsbad MX Raceway used to be, and if you crash enjoy the rash.  I have designed a handful of different seatstays but I wanted to keep this one simple and funcional, nothing fancy but custom, and after various ideas I came across these wishbone stays that I have had forever and I think they are gonna fit the bill perfectly.  I shaved off the miters they came with, fluxed 'em up, and the vise was my jig.  It all came together just too easy, worries for nothing.  I'm liking this 29er thing better already. Today I'm gonna tack it all up and throw that fat mambo jambo tire in it to see how it all looks.  When this frame is finished I think I'm gonna paint it pink and name it Fat Lilly. Big-Legged Emma and Whole Lotta Rosie have already been taken. Ever heard Axl Rose cover Whole Lotta Rosie?  I'll try to find a version of it for you. Check out that fresh batch of flux that just showed up.  It was over 100 degrees out in the shop yesterday. When I opened that flux up all I could think about was a big, icey Slushy, however, this flux doesn't taste as good as it looks.  Catch ya later.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

TOUR DE FRANCE 2011 stage 9 - car crashes into Juan Antonio Flecha and J...

This is a pretty knarly takeout and these guys usually just get back on their bike and go about their business. They're better sports than I am. I would kick the driver of that car out of France forever.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

RV's Stem

Here are a couple of quick pics of Ryan's stem before everything goes to paint.  I have made a handful of stems in the past but they were all the old style where you had to remove everything off your bars before you could remove your bars, some people actually want that style of stem for a retro build however on this stem we wanted to be able to use some of the more modern components and we needed a removable faceplate.  Luckily Paragon Machine Works has it all covered.  I have said it before, Paragon makes top-shelf components and they make a builder's job much easier.  This stem is all steel except for the aluminum faceplate and I'm guessing this thing will still be around long after I'm gone.  Check out that custom engraving.  I just couldn't let that big blank canvas go untouched.  Hopefully this thing will be all painted in a couple of weeks but none of you are gonna see it until after Ryan has opened the box and has seen it all for himself.  Its part of the surprise and when the frame is built especially for you, well, you get to make things happen your way.  Stay tuned.  Chao.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hey, Thats no MEECH

Over the 4th of July I was at my mother's house going through some old photos when I came across this one of my dad years ago.  I never ever saw my dad on a bicycle so I was pretty surprised to come across this.  He was old school, you know, football with leather helmets, boxing, etc. In either l945 or l947 he was a Golden Gloves boxing champion and he went on to train fighters after that.  He tried to teach me how to box when I was little but after my big sister knocked me over the coffee table he told me I should hang up my gloves and focus more on getting away from danger so I guess thats how I got into bicycles.  He had his sports and I had mine but we were equally passionate about what we chose.  One afternoon he tried to walk on my turf and heres what happened.  I was outside with my skateboard on the hill in front of our house when my dad came home for lunch.  After lunch he came outside to get in his car when he saw me walking up the hill.  Being the good dad that he was he decided to spend a quick moment with his son so he came walking out in the street and said, "Here, give me that skating-board, I used to be the champion on these things."  He's wearing dress pants, a white dress shirt, and some Wing Tip shoes. So he practically takes the skateboard away from me and before I know it he's riding down the hill.  About half way down this hill it had a sharp little dip in it that doubled your speed and it was about this time that he developed that famous speed wobble that all skaters are familiar with.  So he bails off at about 20 mph and I guess Wing Tip shoes aren't much for running because the rest was total carnage. Wiped out hard! Cartwheels, flips, no hander lander, he bought it all.  He comes walking back up the hill with both knees ripped out of his pants, scuffed up shoes, and the little bit of that white shirt that was still hanging on him was covered in blood. When he gets to where I'm standing he just hands me the skateboard without saying a word and went back inside and let my mom patch him up. I doubt it if he was ever really a skateboard champion but he did some things that day that I hadn't seen yet.  In his younger days he looked like a cross between Dinero and Fonzie.  He was pretty cool but I'm afraid that he would probably get dropped riding that cruiser with the seat so low, and from the looks of that basket on the front I'm guessing he crashed that bicycle at least a couple of times. Probably why I never saw him on one.  Fly with MEECH!

Carbon Fillets

Here are a few "before and after" pics of the recent work I have done on the carbon frame.  Laying fillets down with brass and a torch is a little more fun than with epoxy and shredded carbon tow, but with some rubber gloves and a popsicle stick you can build what seems to be a pretty solid bond.   And whether your fillet is melted brass or epoxy/carbon tow they both have to be cleaned up and smoothed out and one is no easier than the other.  I expected the fillets would add more weight than what they actually did.  The frame was 2.22 lbs. before the fillets and after it had only increased to 2.28 lbs.  I am hoping that the carbon patches don't add too much either and maybe I can keep this thing down around 2.5 lbs.  I added the water bottle bosses this morning.  I carefully drilled some pilot holes and then increased the size slowly with a Dremel tool.  I just epoxied in some steel bosses that I had because I don't have the little pop-rivot gun that I have seen others use.  I believe the epoxy will be strong enough however only hard miles with full water bottles will give me the truth.  H2O bosses aren't weighing heavy on my mind right now, I am more concerned with being able to dance on the pedals up steep hills and slamming on the brakes at 50 mph without hearing cracking noises, and should one of my frames get hit by a car I hope it smashes the car all up, kinda like the time our Chesapeake retriever was fetching the football and got hit by a Mazda RX-7.  He dented the car all up and still brought the football back.  Should anyone ever smash up their MEECH frame just give me a shout and we'll work some sort of crash replacement out. Other than a couple of cable guides and a derailleur boss I am just about to the vacuum bagging part of things, and seriously, how hard could that be, just stick the frame in a big garbage bag, plug it in, and flip a switch right?  I still don't have my vacuum pump yet but it won't be long.  I already have it picked out.  Stay tuned.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Carbon Build

Got the carbon frame all tacked together this weekend and it looks like a bike frame however I have only done the easy part.  Laying down the carbon patches and the vacuum bagging is gonna be where all the strength comes from however I have to build up some fillets around all the joints first and this will provide some extra strength as well as give me a smoother foundation for the carbon layup.  I have to remind myself that on this first carbon frame I am just shooting to get a good, solid, rideable frameset but I also am hoping that it doesn't look like a pile of rags while I'm riding it.  I shouldn't even pay attention to the weight however I can't help it, building a lighter frame is the main reason I am experimenting with carbon.  Right now its 2.22 lbs in a size 58cm without the tubes trimmed.  I am hoping that the finished frame will be sub 3 lbs but we'll see.  The next weigh-in will be after I have all the fillets laid down. I'm fixin' to start on that right now. Stay tuned.  How bout that Tour?  I don't have a clue who's gonna win but I bet we're gonna see Alberto Contador climb like a maniac before too long.  Enjoy.