About Me

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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.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Finished? No, but close.

I did some work on the carbon frame this weekend and while I was gonna put one more layer around the BB shell, the itch to test ride this thing got the best of me and i said, "Screw it, I'm gonna ride this thing and if it breaks, pffff."  I think its strong enough but what do I know?  I know we're gonna find out.  Last night I put a coat of epoxy over all the joints just to see how it would clean up with some clear coat.  It wasn't bad but the clear showed the imperfections and unevenness in the layers, kinda like paint will do, so today I decided to sand it down and try to even it out a bit before putting any clear on it.  Honestly I'm not to concerned with how this first one looks.  Its gonna take some practice to make the lay-ups look professional for sure and I'm gonna start just as soon as I know the frame is structurally sound.  This frame has 2-3 layers of carbon around all the joints and I used two, actually three different types of carbon.  I used some uni-directional tape first, mainly because everyone acts like that is the best for strength in bicycle frames, and then on the head tube and BB shell i covered them with some braided sleeve carbon.  It was mainly for aesthetic purposes but it also stretches in different directions very easily and drapes around the curves much better.  On the seat tube/seat stay juncture I tried a little different technique just to experiment.  After putting a couple of layers of uni, I took some carbon tow and wrapped everything really tight and pulled the layers into the corners.  I built this frame using wet layup and hand wrapping it.  I bought a vacuum pump a while back but haven't mastered the vac. bagging process yet.  My plan was to put one final layer of carbon over all the joints and then vacuum bag the whole thing but I ran out of some of the bagging supplies needed and I just can't wait any longer to test ride this thing.  The only section I'm really concerned with is the BB shell.  I don't know if 2 layers is sufficient but I'm gonna find out before long.  I just need to get a couple of thin sleeves machined to house the headset cups and come up with some sort of seatpost clamp and then I'm building this dude up.  I know your supposed to test the first one by finding the breaking point of the frame but I can't bring myself to break this thing just yet.  Breaking it with a steel bar seems a bit lame to me anyway,  that has nothing to do with bike riding at all.  I'm gonna put this thing on a 10% grade and slam it into the big ring and sprint like its the finish of a race.  If that doesn't break it then I'm gonna descend the hill and lay into the front brakes as hard as I can without going over the bars and if that doesn't break it then I'm gonna ride it off a curb.  If it passes all this then I'm good, cause thats the way I ride everyday.  After putting the braze-ons on (if you want to call them that) and the derailleur hanger the weight creeped up over 2.5 lbs.  I wasn't real pleased about that but it is a 58cm and I didn't slope the top tube too much either so I'm hoping that I have some room to shave weight off the next one.  Some of the weight may be in the Dedacciai rear stay setup, not sure.  Anyway, its all educational.

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