Monday, January 16, 2012

Practice practice

I went in today planning to braze the junction of the head tube and the down tube, but decided that I wasn't really "there" yet.  I've got some ideas though and I think that by Sunday I should have it.

I did play with some big (huge) metal cutting saws, which was really fun.  One of the best things about this project is that I'm developing a lot of rudimentary fabrication skills.

I basically cut up a bunch of rings and then practiced brazing them.  Initially, I just wasn't getting full penetration of the filler, but I think that that's partially because I got used to using silver in the week I was doing braze-ons.  After a couple of tries and a helpful pointer, I was getting about what I got the last time I did this drill.

Things I'm trying to focus on:

  1. Getting the whole lug up to, or nearly up to, temperature before trying to flow bronze anywhere.
  2. Keeping the far side hotter than the shoreline I'm feeding from so that the bronze will flow through.  
  3. Cleanliness, cleanliness, cleanliness.  I reheated a piece for practice getting things up to temp, and MAN, even when I was above temperature the bronze would not flow onto it.  It'd melt right up against the lug and then just roll off.  It's amazing what careful cleaning will add to a joint, and how much fresh flux helps.
Perhaps more importantly, I'm getting some feedback on where to apply filler, and how far I should be able to drag it through the joint to be confident that I've filled things properly.  I'll post an update on that when I have more info.

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