Eight Tubes, Part 12: Oh Won’t You Stay, Just A Little Bit Longer…

Next up – seat stays. Not much to blather on about here; this is pretty simple. The top of the stay fits into a remarkably clever little socket on the back of the seat tube collar, and the bottom end is notched and then attached to the rear drop out just like the chain stay was.


As I say, easy. What could go wrong?

We had a slight “moment” when it appeared that the seat stays were not going to be long enough. Slide the top into the remarkably clever little socket…offer up the stay to the rear drop out…and it barely reaches.

Time to get out the measuring tape.

Turns out that when I was making “adjustments” to the chain stays (i.e bending or, more euphemistically, “cold setting” them) in order to center the wheel in the frame, I managed to shove them downward, toward the floor. Whoops. Re-attach the fork, get out the measuring tape to locate where the rear dropout should be located, and reset the chain stays.

That fixed the problem, allowing me to breathe again.

The rest of it is straightforward. Double check to make sure that the dropouts are aligned both laterally and vertically – I did this by putting an old wheel (but true) in the dropouts when I brazed the top of the stay to the seat collar. I could visually check to make sure that everything lined up laterally and horizontally and that the wheel was located properly between the stays.

The results:



The next bit to fabricate is the brake bridge. I opted for a nice Cinelli style bridge, and some fancy do dads that dress it up a bit. Figuring out where to locate the brake bridge is a bit of trial and error. The main thing is that it is really helpful if you know what type of brakes you are using and their “reach” – usually the distance from the mounting stud to the lowest adjustment for the brake shoes. Am using a set of short reach brakes that I have laying around the shop, so I attached a rear wheel and offered up he brake caliper to the frame to figure out where the bridge should go.

Get out the die grinder, and trim the bridge to fit. Add fancy doo dads. Here it is, ready to braze:



I stopped here because I was on the verge of screwing up. Plus, the pretty girls wanted to go for a ride…



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