"He Wears Black and Has a Beard"

CBIIweek: day 4

Toby Roworth

Aug 9, 2013

I needed a week off work to take a break. I also needed to make the distance between the saddle and the pedals bigger on my bike. So cue "CrapBike II week" (CBIIweek for short), in which I modify my bike a bit.

Today wasn't quite so productive as I hoped. Figuring out the seat fittings was a little trickier than I expected, and the bracing I added to the back needed some tricky fishmouthing. Still, by the end of the day I had a coat of paint on, meaning tomorrow morning I can get a second coat of paint on the frame, finish building the seat and put it all together.

I started the day by cleaning off any remnants of Nitromors with washing up liquid and water. Then I trial fitted the (now) rear brakes,to work out how to connect them. Because they're the rubbish type (no photo, I'm afraid) I'm having to bodge them a bit which, given that they're the good set of brakes, can only go from good to better.

Once this was done I build the seat frame from studwork timber I had lying about. A couple of minutes with a reciprocating saw showed the silly wood (I'm a metal man) who was in charge. To further bully the wood I threw some massive screws through it with an impact driver, no pilot hole or anything. Any tales of splitting are wildly exaggerated.

Then I had to work out how to mount the seat. In the end I welded a support pole onto the frame, and made up a piece to slide into it, similar to my handlebars, that will eventually screw onto the seat. A couple of screws through the frame will keep the base down nicely, although it does mean I need to drill holes in my newly painted frame.

Whilst I had the welder out I braced the rear forks. I'm not convinced they need it, but I really don't want to find out they do six miles from work and three miles from a station.

Because of the angle they're at, they needed some really complicated fishmouthing. Back in the day, this was a five minutes job, but today it just wasn't working. I ended up getting it close, welding up the small gaps, as normal, and then hammering the bigger gaps closed, before putting a bead of weld over them. This actually works quite well, but isn't the "proper" way of doing things.

Finally I broke out the Hammerite. Once again the Curse of the Cerise Paint struck, as the Hammerite didn't want to stick properly to it, meaning it's going to need a second coat tomorrow morning. Hopefully it'll be hot, so it dries quickly... If all goes well I might even add some subtle detailing in yellow.

Last day tomorrow - wish me luck...