Eight Tubes, Part 4: A Small Aesthetic Emergency

We interrupt the construction of this particular frame set to deal with a small aesthetic emergency. It seems that just when I thought that I had put Old Number One (my first frame building project) firmly in the completed pile, a small issue has arisen that (1) is unexpected, (2) is annoying, and (3) makes more work for me.

Here’s the deal: I liked the way that Old Number One looked in bare metal so much that I tried to come up with a strategy to keep it that way. My solution was to spray the frame with Krylon clear acrylic (satin finish) and hope for the best.

Well, it ain’t working.


It says “Indoor/Outdoor” right on the can, but it appears that the finish is a bit porous when you don’t spray on an unreasonably thick coat of the stuff. Granted, I might have gone a little light on the spots where I am getting the problems – mostly on the chain stays- in order to avoid runs in the paint. I’ll also concede that human body sweat can be fairly corrosive, except that I don’t think I am schvitzing to the point where it is running down the frame and pooling on the chain stays. That would be (1) unacceptably gross, and (2) biologically unlikely.

So right now I am about to flip a coin to see whether I just assume that I went too light on the clear coat and reshoot where I have problems or stop farting around with it and just re-paint it. I am thinking Merckx orange with a white fork and panels on the down tube and seat tube. Or, easier yet, solid white.

The other reason that I am a little slow on the construction end of things is that I have run out of silver flux, so no brazing for me. That’s probably a good thing, because it has given me some time to think out how I am going to attack brazing up the most crucial parts of the fork – the crown and legs – to make sure that I have good strong joints. Otherwise, I am ready to start cutting metal on the fork…


5 Responses to “Eight Tubes, Part 4: A Small Aesthetic Emergency”

  1. 1 Anonymous
    July 30, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    If I am not mistaken, there is a clear powdercoat is there not? T0G

  2. 3 Nick Belletti
    December 6, 2012 at 5:51 am

    Too bad Alexandria Metal Finishers moved to Lorton. They were so convenient on South Early Street and a good source of personal knowledge/information. I has some things chrome plated 30 years ago and they still look good. Nice ladyfriend you picture.

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