Ok, so I know I've been an absentee landlord these last few weeks. If you only knew how long I've waited to have something new to actually post. I tried to at least touch base a couple of times with some Vuelta coverage or anything else that I could try to pass off as news to you in order to get myself to a point where I could actually post something worthwhile. This frame here has taken me longer to finish than any other frame in the history of MEECH. It still lacks the head badge, that just happened to show up in the mailbox today, and it still needs a little spit-shine in a couple of spots.
"Where have you been D?" Man, I've been trying to figure out how to take care of a baby. I tell you, it hasn't come easy for me. We've had people in the house since before he was born. Mothers, sisters, friends, neighbors, etc. have been coming and going for the last 4 weeks. It was nice to have some help for a while however we were ready to get the house back to ourselves and kinda try to find a groove to get into with this kid called Jack. Ever heard of a dead end groove? I just made that up. How bout a "Jack Attack?" Thats what I call it when he wakes up. Have you ever just looked up in the sky and asked God to please just send you a signal? Is anybody up there? Yeah right, like he knows what to do. He's the one who created this mess. Have you taken a look at the world lately? People are getting their heads cut off, and worse, the Duggars have their own TV show. Imagine twenty people going to the grocery store in a bus together. Now that's scary. "Do I have a third option? No? Ok, just cut my head off." Kids are kinda like Rodney Dangerfield describes them in the movie "Back to School" when he says, "The greatest thing about kids is making them." Thats been the case so far anyway, but I'm sure it'll get better because I'm a semi-optimist.
Lately people have been saying to me, "Congratulations on the baby! How does it feel being a daddy?" And I reply, " I would love to tell you except I'm unable to feel anything at the given moment." My head is so tired and cloudy that I worry about getting on my bike for fear of making a bad call. I have been managing to get out for an hour or so about every other day just to try and keep sanity within reach. Usually when I get back home I don't really remember the ride. I'm only four weeks in and I'm already looking for the light at the end of the tunnel. "Jesus, is that you?" Nope, its just the 12:05 running a bit early. Frame building you ask? It seems like an unsolvable puzzle. I honestly don't feel like a frame builder right now. When I do something with a frame it almost seems odd to me. I finished all my orders about a month before the baby was born and didn't take any more because I wasn't sure when I would be able to get anything done. I'm looking forward to the resurrection though, the MEECH resurrection that is. Jesus did it in only 3 days, however its gonna take me quite a bit longer I'm all sure.
I was always a bit scared about having kids and all I can say is that I was right all along and I saw this coming before the sun reached the horizon. Whats the big deal? I mean people do this all the time, right? Don't know, I guess I'm a bit weird. I've always felt more like a kid than a dad. Also, I'm more of a dog person than a people person. Dogs love me, but babies, well...maybe one day.
"Are you gonna talk about frames or bikes at all D?" Check that dude out. It took a long time but nothing good comes easy huh? A while back I built a frame almost identical to this one for Sandy up in the New York/Mass area. He's put over a couple thousand miles on it and says he loves it, so since it seemed to be such a success I decided to build another and just put it up for sale. So anyway, lets go check this thing out. In order to change things up a bit, instead of posting a few pics from every little part of the process, I decided to just start from the beginning of the process and end with the final result all in one post. Who knows when I'll get another frame up. I actually have one all mocked up in the jig. Its a bit unique as well but your guess is as good as mine when it'll be finished. Follow me.
This of course is the frame I built for Sandy. He sent me a more recent photo however I couldn't seem to get it uploaded so I posted one of the older ones. These frames are the "Go anywhere, do anything, road frames." They have extra tire clearance for up to a 32c, a Wound-Up light touring fork, and rack mounts should you want some fenders for commuting. The only thing else you need is some medium-reach brake calipers. Velo Orange makes a great pair of calipers that Sandy is currently using and I have a pair sitting in my tool box as well. Cane Creek, Shimano, and Pauls Components also make some very likeable calipers that will work perfect with these frames. Lets check out the photos.
I took a little extra meat out of the bb shell to tilt the scale my way.
S and S couplers are what makes these frames the "Go Anywhere Bike" that they are. Can you envision some backroads in Andalucia during la Vuelta a Espana? I can.
I enjoy nice, tight miters. Its one of my favorite parts of frame building.
This is a 30c cross tire. Fairly worn I might add.
This is a brand new Vittoria 32c cross tire. Snug fit, but it spins.
A bit different braze-on for the derailleurs
A few brazing shots.
The head badges came in the mail today so I should get it on tomorrow.
Check out the fork work. Love the black crown and dropouts. Didn't have to paint them, only tape 'em up.
The color scheme is straight outta nowhere. I started out with the yellow and turqoise idea after Nibali and Team Astana won the Tour. Then I decided to throw in a forth color and decided on the reddish-orange. All in all I was very happy with it, and you'll never have to worry about running into another frame painted like this one on your group ride.
This shows the contrast pretty well.
Carbonification on the chain stays. Its not bought, its made. Handmade that is. Don't even think about shooting this frame in the chain stay, it'll ricochet and put your eye out kid.
Used a new stencil on the seat stay just for the fun of it. I like to change things up from time to time and keep it interesting. I'm fixing to start playing with some new paint schemes.
Thanks for baring with me during this new and crazy period of my life. I'm sure things are gonna get better, afterall, they can't get any worse. Just joking. Jack is pushing Anne and I to our limits but one day it'll be worth it. When he gets older, oh man, am I gonna work his little butt off.
"Jack, go make me some coffee."
"Jack, go get me my toothbrush."
"Jack, get me my houseshoes."
"Jack, brush my teeth."
"Jack, go brush your teeth first."
"Jack, miter those tubes and braze that frame up."
"Paint that frame Jack."
"Jack, if you can build two frames a day instead of one, I'll pay you
two boxes of popscicles a day."
In order to calm my nerves a bit I started reading a book called "Living Buddha, Living Christ", or something to that extent. It talks about different ways to enlighten one's self and become more at peace with the world. Apparently Buddhists are always aware of what they're doing at the moment, which seems easy enough until you try it. For example,
when they're breathing, they are aware that they are breathing, and when they are eating, they are aware that they're eating. Make sense? Clear as mud. Last night I read a part that said when they're chewing their food that they chew it 30 times before they swallow it. I guess they are thinking about all the sunshine and rain that went into the food while they're chewing it, and it supposedly helps with digestion as well. Duh, its liquid after 20 chews, unless its my mother's roast beef recipe. Trying to eat that is worst than a knife fight. I was gonna try the whole 'counting chews' tonight but I had already cleaned my plate and put it in the sink before I remembered I was eating. I don't have time to chew a bite 30 times, I get interrupted too much.
"Dammit Jack, you made me lose count, now I got start all over!"
Besides, if I chewed each bite 30 times before swallowing I would burn more calories than I'd be taking in.
FACT: I can eat a whole box of Little Debbie Swiss Cake rolls in only 24 bites, twelve if I focus. Remember the time I almost choked to death on that Peanut Butter sandwich? Wonder what Buddha would say about that?