An admitted shoe geek waxes philosophical about running, triathlon, and life in general.
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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Coming soon -- Frame building class with Ti Cycles Fabrication

I just got the confirmation today -- in just over two weeks, I'll be in Portland taking the frame building class at Ti Cycles Fabrication, and I'm totally JAZZED!

I had the pleasure of contracting Dave Levy at Ti Cycles to build a custom titanium road racing frame for me about 18 years ago (I think, I'm really not sure what year it was), and not long after that, a steel track/single-speed bike, both with Softride beams. I still have those bikes, and though the single speed doesn't get much use now that I'm not racing on the track, I used the road frame for last year's RAMROD.

Ti Cycles moved from Seattle to Portland several years ago, after closing their retail location. Dave now runs the bike frame fabrication business, as well as Cedar Ridge Fabrication ("car stuff", as it's termed). I visited the shop just a couple weeks ago to talk with him about some options on my road frame (revising the front end geometry as well as increasing the tire clearance on the chainstays), and asked about the class. He had been planning one for March, a "concentrated" class in the space of one week, which fit my needs perfectly. Turns out there was still space in the class, and I just happened to get a little windfall that allowed me to afford it.

Ti Cycles isn't afraid to go outside the norm to make a bike frame. At the latest NAHBS (North American Handmade Bike Show) in Denver just a week ago, they showed a cargo bike that attracted a lot of attention.

I've got a pretty firm idea what I want to build in the class, and there are just a few details to work out with tire and chainring clearance in the chainstays. Coming out of there with a bike I've designed and built will be awesome. Riding it will be a game-changer.

So then it'll just be a matter of getting my brazing set-up together and practicing my brazing techniques.

The beginning of a new era.

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