Archive for the Category » Bicycling «

Friday, April 24th, 2009 | Author:

$40 later the rack has been nicely powder coated. Thanks ProStrip. I dropped it off on a Wednesday afternoon, and got it back Friday afternoon. It turned out pretty nicely, and fits well, both bare and with a rack trunk in place.

Category: Bicycling, Uncategorized  | Tags: , , , ,  | Comments off
Sunday, April 12th, 2009 | Author:

My wife is a bit under-tall and it is a bit of a struggle to get a proper fitting bicycle for her. Fortunately, the bikes by Georgena Terry fit her well. She has also seen the light and rides a Brooks leather saddle. Her favorite model is the sprung Champion Flyer “S”. The combination of the low seat height and the seat springs make it impossible to fit her bike with a traditional rear rack. A rack can almost be kludged under the seat if the style is chosen carefully, but the problem remains that a bag on top of the rack is in the way of the seat.

Being a firm believer in everybody carrying their own weight, I decided to fix this problem. I got some 5/16″ 0.035″ wall thickness 4130 Chrome-Moly aircraft tubing and a bit of silver solder and set out to make a rack just for her bike (or any 18.5″ 700c Terry frame).

I don’t have a proper torch, or much in the way of proper tooling, so I knew this was going to be an adventure. Silver solder has a melting point below the flame temperature of propane, so I knew at least I stood a chance at making a joint. The one tool I bought after trying lesser tubing benders is a Ridgid tubing bender. The cheap tubing benders sold at Harbor Freight and the like work well for copper and aluminum tubing but really fall flat on thin walled steel. The Ridgid made bends that are a thing of beauty.

Shown below is the results of my efforts using a few hand tools, the tubing bender, and a propane torch. The rack is set back far enough that with a rack trunk in place there is still some room between my wife’s posterior and the front of the trunk. In the pictures, the fillets are nearly complete with final sanding and finish work left to do. The final step is to powder coat the rack.

Friday, April 03rd, 2009 | Author:

A dishing tool is used to check that the rim is centered between the hub ends during wheel building or truing. In the mid-1980’s, being a poor high-school kid, I built a wheel dishing tool out of a 2×4 with a bite cut out of the center, and a screw assembly from a cheap stamped c-clamp. Over the years the tool took a beating from multiple moves and not enough care in storing it.

I have the cheapest truing stand known to man, which does not automatically center the feelers so if I’m not careful, I can walk the rim out of dish while truing.

I was going to buy a dishing tool, but the ones available today aren’t too impressive and cost more than one I could build out of 80-20 aluminum extrusions. I used my little machine tools and put one together for about $30. The main components are 10 series single slot 80-20; the main beam is 30″ long, and the arms are 3 inches long. The center feeler is a piece of 1/4-20 all thread with some hardware store knobs on the outside, and a simple turned feeler on the inside. The pictures are below:

Category: Bicycling  | Tags: , , ,  | One Comment
Sunday, November 23rd, 2008 | Author:

My Toyota Tacoma has been a great truck and a faithful bicycle carrier for the last four years.  I have been using a Saris Cool Rack for the past few years.  It’s been a good performer, but doesn’t work very well with my bed liner.  I stole this idea from Keith Kidder. It’s a a great idea and works really really well. It mounts and un-mounts with a pair of bolts in seconds. I leave it in place under the tonneau cover.  I machined all the parts with my little CNC Taig milling machine.