Progress..

When I saw these dropouts on the Reynolds stand at Bespoked I knew that I had to share the pictures.  They’re laser sintered titanium semi-hollow dropouts.  Extremely lightweight and they look very strong.  Reynolds are also talking about making steel dropouts in the same way.

Laser sintered titanium disc mount dropouts with internal strengthening webs!  Pretty far out.

Laser sintered titanium disc mount dropouts with internal strengthening ribs(this is a cross section). Pretty far out!

On the outside..

On the outside..

Another angle.

Another angle.

On a less-futuristic note, there’s been some more activity at my workshop.  My in-house-made fork bender worked well.  I also had to turn down the fork crown race seat in the lathe so that I could fit the headset crown race.  Plus, to make my setup more professional I’m building up a custom horizontal mill for tube mitring with a Variable Frequency Drive to give me adjustable speed control within a window of reasonable torque.

Here’s how I got on:

I had to cut the crown race seat to fit the headset crown race.  I did this in the big lathe in the machine shop.  This Italian lathe has a double-vee bed, taper turning and high-speed reverse.

I had to cut the crown race seat to fit the headset crown race. I did this in the big lathe in the machine shop. This Italian lathe has a double-vee bed, taper turning and high-speed reverse.

I used a 1" collet in the collet chuck.

I used a 1″ collet in the collet chuck.

Carefully dialling in the cut.

Carefully dialling in the cut.

My in-house-made fork blade bender made a nice smooth radius with no creases or marks.

My in-house-made fork blade bender made a nice smooth radius with no creases or marks.

It was easy to rake both blades to 50mm.

It was easy to rake both blades to 50mm.

I had to be sure that both fork blades were the same length when they were pushed fully home into the crown sockets.

I had to be sure that both fork blades were the same length when they were pushed fully home into the crown sockets.

I  marked a thin line to shave off with a file around the top of the blade.  When the line is just invisible everywhere I stop filing.

I marked a thin line to shave off with a file around the top of the blade. When the line is just invisible everywhere I stop filing.

Checking the blade is filed squarely.

Checking the blade is filed squarely.

I find it easy to use these adjustable parallels.

I find it easy to use these adjustable parallels.

Here I can see that both sides match.  I know that the rim is true and correctly dished.

Here I can see that both sides match. I know that the rim is true and correctly dished.

This time I used my ever-evolving home made fork jig, but I now have all the parts to make a more permanent version in metal with built-in rulers/scales/graduations/thingies.

This time I used my ever-evolving home made fork jig, but I now have all the parts to make a more permanent version in metal with built-in rulers/scales/graduations/thingies.

But this time I had the faffing with a height gauge and calculations.

But this time I had the faffing with a height gauge and calculations.

Winding up the Myford vertical slide which holds the dummy front axle.

Winding up the Myford vertical slide which holds the dummy front axle.

After brazing - a soak in the water tank and a quick sand it started to look like a fork.  I will sand it up some more.

After brazing – a soak in the water tank and a quick sand it started to look like a fork. I will sand it up some more.

To get my tube mitring mill up and running I decided to go for a variable frequency drive/inverter package from Transwave. No more belt changing, especially given my fairly narrow speed requirements for tube cutting.

This is the package I bought from Transwave.  The 3 phase motor is very small but kicks out 3/4 hp. It even has a large fan built into the back.

This is the package I bought from Transwave. The 3 phase motor is very small but kicks out 3/4 hp. It even has a large fan built into the back.

The soldering and wiring took a little while but the instructions were easy to follow.

The soldering and wiring took a little while but the instructions were easy to follow.

The inverter with the cover back on.  I have 3 phase power in the workshop but I decided that this single-phase to 3 phase inverter would be sufficient and more flexible.

The inverter with the cover back on. I have 3 phase power in the workshop but I decided that this single-phase to 3 phase inverter was cheap, sufficient and more flexible.

I bolted the inverter/VFD inside the old cast iron flypress stand.  Out of the way.  Think I'll paint this old stand up.

I bolted the inverter/VFD inside the old cast iron flypress stand. Out of the way. Think I’ll paint this grubby old stand up.

Next I drilled some mounting holes for the Ajax mill.

Next I drilled some mounting holes for the Ajax mill.

Here you can see the mill setup with  the remote unit bolted to it.  It has start, stop, forward, reverse and jog (inch) functions.  The motor can be seen behind will have a slotted plate to slide laterally to enable belt tensioning.  Needless to say, that's a Torch and File mitre cutter in the collet.

Here you can see the mill setup with the remote unit bolted to it. It has start, stop, forward, reverse and jog (inch) functions. The bottom knob is the motor speed control. The motor can be seen behind and will have a slotted plate to slide laterally to enable belt tensioning. Needless to say, that’s a Torch and File mitre cutter in the collet.

I have to make a drawbar to lock the ER32 collet into the mill spindle.

A sketch for a drawbar to fit my little horizontal mill.  I'm going to make it on my trusty little Myford ML7 lathe.

A sketch for a drawbar to fit my little horizontal mill. I’m going to make it on my trusty little Myford ML7 lathe.

Makin' swarf on my 1957 lathe, "Peggy-Sue".  I totally rebuilt this old girl and she does come in handy for smaller work.

Makin’ swarf on my 1957 lathe, “Peggy-Sue”. I totally rebuilt this old girl and she does come in handy for smaller work.

Chugging along happily via the powered leadscrew.

Chugging along happily via the powered leadscrew.

I cut it dry as it was a lead-bearing length of hexagon steel. It's only a drawbar.

I cut it dry as it was a lead-bearing length of hexagon steel. It’s only a drawbar.

Bish bash bosh.  John advised me to leave loads of material on the end for when the threads wear out. Then I can just chop off that bit and cut some more thread.  Now if I can find that die I'll be in business..

Bish bash bosh.
John advised me to leave loads of material on the hex end for when the threads wear out. Then I can just chop off that bit and cut some more thread. Now if I can find that die I’ll be in business..

I’ve ordered a self-centring vice and a length of extruded aluminium profile for the tube mitring fixture. John already has a suitably sized rotary table he has kindly offered to lend to the cause.

I’ll make another post when the machine and fixture is up and running.

Bye for now.

Matt

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2 Comments on “Progress..”

  1. Mark Hoffman says:

    Hi, my name is Mark. I live in the US and make titanium bicycles. I have been working on a dropout design for my bikes that is extremely similar to the Reynolds dropout you have a picture of here. Do you have any information on where I can get some of these dropouts and do you know if they are going to make a twelve mm throughaxle model? Ps I love your website. Thanks. Mark

    • Hi Mark, apologies for my delay in replying, I just got back from a camping trip with no internet signal.
      Please contact Keith Noronha at Reynolds Technology with any queries about these dropouts.
      (k AT rtl.cc)


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