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.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Jumpin Jack Flash

I know its been way too long since I've posted anything but there just hasn't been much to post. This post here is gonna be reaching for any sort of creativity at all. I'm currently working on a 29er for Christian who I built the most recent cross frame for.  He loves the frame and told me thats its one of the best bikes that he's ever ridden.  Those are encouraging words and always good to hear and so now I'm working on trying to stuff a 2.4 tire in between some chain stays and make this frame as good as the last.  It really hasn't been that bad.  I just haven't spent a lot of time building mountain bike frames and I'm a little unfamiliar with it, but I'm slowly getting back up to speed with this one.  It has a 142/12mm thru-axle design, which is a first for me since I've been out of mountain biking for quite some time now. 

 I used to love riding the trails and bombing downhills but somehow over the years it got pushed aside. Occasionally I think I need to build me a 29er and start riding again but there just doesn't seem to be enough time to get all these things in. Its all i can do just to get out for an hour 2-3 days a week on the one bike I have.  I've really been feeling the lack of riding time both physically and mentally, and, when you combine that with the cold weather, well, lets just say that sometimes I'm not that much fun to be around.  My wife has been telling me that I have a bad attitude and to suck it up but its easier said than done.  I don't want to have a bad attitude as I prefer to be more positive.  Life is just better when you attack it with a positive outlook.  Its just that when I can't get out and exhaust my energy I start to feel like a caged animal.  I don't want to just sit there and suck it up, I want to fight back. I can get really on edge sometimes, and when I'm like that I usually stay away from people.  Funny enough though, its people who usually help me get through this because I don't normally have an attitude around others.  I can, at the least, be cordial for a short conversation.  I guess we take it out on our families for some reason, unintentionally of course. Truthfully, this winter has not been that bad.  At the moment we have a really nice warm spell and it feels almost like Spring.  I may get some riding in this coming week.  However, its those really cold spells that seem to affect me.  You know, when you wake up and its 1 degree. "What? One degree!" I'd prefer that they didn't even put a number on it at all. Don't want to even  know.  I wish my phone would just say, "Its damn cold man! Get ready." Sometimes its hard to believe I live in the South.  I have total respect for the people who face really hard winters because I'm certain that I couldn't do it.  I have family in South Bend, Indiana who sometimes have a literal tunnel dug out from their front door. My bad attitude would say, "EFF this, I'm outta here!"  My grandmother told me once about the time they moved up to Flint, Michigan to work in the car factories.  She said they would come out from their shift and that all the cars would be covered so deep in snow that you had no idea which car was your own. She told my grandfather these exact words, "If you wanna stay here thats fine with me, but I'm going back to Arkansas as soon as I can get outta here.", and she left.  Luckily, he eventually followed her, so I was allowed a little time with my grandfather before he passed.  He was great because he always bought me fireworks and took me fishing.  What more could you ask for as a 4 year old?

So I'm working on a 29er, my attitude, and then theres Jack.  I call him Jumpin Jack because he spends about half his day jumping up and down in the Jump-a-Roo. It hasn't been easy for me making the transition from being able to come and go as I please to becoming an almost full-time baby sitter.  I'm not gonna lie (because I feel I'm too old to),  some days have been down right hard to deal with.  Some things come easy for me however this isn't one of those things. When he gets cranky and is crying off and on all day long, I'm thinking, "Calgon, please shoot me!"  There's that bad attitude again.  I'm sorry. I honestly don't know where i get it from.  A screaming baby has always been my Achilles Heel for as long as I can remember.  The only thing that I can imagine worse, or equal to a baby screaming, is if you were stuck in a jet that was fixing to crash and everyone is screaming like their head is on fire.  Good thing about the plane crash is that it wouldn't be that long before it all ended.  With a baby its like the plane is fixing to crash for 20 minutes and then its not, and then its gonna crash again, and then its not, and on and on and on.  Imagine a plane crash that takes 2 hours to complete. And then you go to bed, get some sleep, and do it all over again the next day.  You think I'm not counting down the hours until Anne is off work?

All and all, Jack has been a really good baby for the most part.  I know that I'm blessed to have him and I love him more than anything, and thats why I haven't been getting much done lately.  I feel like if I've brought this child into the world, then its my obligation to make sure he's as good as I can make him be.  I want him to be something good for the world, an asset so to speak. In other words, I don't want him to have a bad attitude. And so if my frame building time, riding time, and blogging time suffers, so be it.  I just don't want the rest of the world to suffer because I haven't done my job of raising this kid to the best of my ability. Thanks for baring with me while I learn to become a dad, and, if I ever have an attitude around you the best thing to do is just tell me about it.  I hate to hear that I have a bad attitude and thats the best way for me to change it.

Paragon 142/12mm stainless dropouts.  Very nice stuff but the miters and brazing are a bit of a challenge.  I have to have a clear mind in order to get these like I want them.

Some pretty intricate machining going on with these little frame ends, and I also like the thru-axle design quite a lot.

I think I've found all the clearance I need.  I think Christian is gonna run a 1 x 10 on this. 

I ran into a little brazing problem the other day.  While I was brazing up the final dropout the tack on the chain stay broke free while I was heating it and I guess the heat made the stay pull to the inside of the dropout.  So anyway, trying to fix it only made it worse and now I have to start over.  And to add a little insult to injury, or vice versa, I managed to poke myself in the eye with a brazing rod which required a trip to the doctor. Its ashame because alot of work went into getting all this to fit right right and it was exactly like I wanted it.  Oh well, if I can do it once I can do it again and the eye is healed for the most part so tomorrow I'll be back at it.
Thanks for stopping by.

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