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Thread: Kirk Frameworks

  1. #181
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by Lionel View Post

    When a new tubeset comes out do you get to experiment with it? Like building yourself a bike or you judge it on specs?
    Thanks again for the reply.

    I first judge it on the specs as they can tell you a good bit. If they pass that basic test and I'm still interested I build something for myself and test ride it. I can tell within a ride or two if I'm headed in the right direction. If I need to change the set up I'll swap tubes as need be and retest. Once that is out of the way and I'm as happy as i can be with the build I abuse the shit out of it........... typically lots of hard dirt road stuff on hard skinny tires and downhill washboards. I ruin a good number of wheels and tires making sure that the frame will stand up to the abuse. I love this part of it. Then, if it passes all this, I offer the first production version to a trusted customer who I know will give me straight feedback. If I've done my homework the feedback will be good and I will then offer it for general sale.

    Coincidentally I'm starting the build on a new prototype tomorrow for testing. It's the first proto since the original JKS and JKC bikes and I must say I'm a bit excited. If it works out well you'll see one at the show this winter. Product development is really fun.

    Dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  2. #182
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Kirk View Post
    Thanks again for the reply.

    I first judge it on the specs as they can tell you a good bit. If they pass that basic test and I'm still interested I build something for myself and test ride it. I can tell within a ride or two if I'm headed in the right direction. If I need to change the set up I'll swap tubes as need be and retest. Once that is out of the way and I'm as happy as i can be with the build I abuse the shit out of it........... typically lots of hard dirt road stuff on hard skinny tires and downhill washboards. I ruin a good number of wheels and tires making sure that the frame will stand up to the abuse. I love this part of it. Then, if it passes all this, I offer the first production version to a trusted customer who I know will give me straight feedback. If I've done my homework the feedback will be good and I will then offer it for general sale.

    Coincidentally I'm starting the build on a new prototype tomorrow for testing. It's the first proto since the original JKS and JKC bikes and I must say I'm a bit excited. If it works out well you'll see one at the show this winter. Product development is really fun.

    Dave
    That's sounds like a really cool process indeed. I'm as tall as you, send it my way and i'll beat the shit out of it too ;)
     

  3. #183
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by Lionel View Post
    That's sounds like a really cool process indeed. I'm as tall as you, send it my way and i'll beat the shit out of it too ;)
    Cool....... howz bout I beat it first and then you can have your turn with the remnants?

    Dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  4. #184
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Kirk View Post
    Cool....... howz bout I beat it first and then you can have your turn with the remnants?

    Dave
    Deal!
     

  5. #185
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    Default And now for something completely different.

    My policy is that I only do work on my own brand. This may sound snobby but one just never knows what is going on inside a frame when you haven't built it with your own two hands. But rules are meant to be broken as they say. Recently I had a guy call me and ask if I could replace the broken dropout on his older Serotta. He called Serotta and was told they no longer had anyone there that could do the work.

    So against my own self imposed rules I took the job. Chances are pretty good I built the bike in the first place and I certainly know what I will find when I dig into the frame.

    It arrived today and the timing couldn't have been better in that I was just about to start the next bike and I could squeeze the repair in without interrupting the flow at all.

    I took a series of photos so folks could get a rough idea of how this kind of thing is done. It's very simple really but can be fussy.

    The first thing to do is to cut the dropout into two pieces so that when you heat each section you can slide each piece out. It will not come out as a single piece.

    Next you need to clean off as much of the paint as you can and cover the whole mess with flux and then gently heat each section and slide out the dead pieces.

    Once the old dropout is out you need to soak the flux off and clean up the stays and get them ready, inside and out, for the new dropout.

    Next you need to dry fit the new dropout and check the alignment to be sure you don't braze the new one in only to find it's way out of whack.

    Once the fit is confirmed you need to clean up everything very well, flux it all up and fit the dropout in place. I use special tools to hold it all it place so things don't move while brazing.

    With the brazing done the next thing is to soak the flux off in very hot water. With the flux removed it becomes very much like building a new bike and not a repair. You check the alignment and get that all squared away and then do the shaping and finish work. Total time for the repair was 2 hours dead.

    In the end it is literally as good as new - just as it was in the mid 90's when this custom 64 cm bike left the Serotta factory in Glens Falls, New York. it's a good feeling knowing that this cool old bike will go back into full time service soon.

    That's all I got. Thanks for looking.

    Dave




    d1.jpgd2.jpgd3.jpgd4.jpgd5.jpgd6.jpgd7.jpgd8.jpgd9.jpgd10.jpg
    Last edited by Dave Kirk; 09-01-2010 at 07:43 PM.
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  6. #186
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Thanks for posting this Dave. After you did your part, did the frame end up getting a total recoat? It seems like the time to do it if ever.
     

  7. #187
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by Craig Ryan View Post
    Thanks for posting this Dave. After you did your part, did the frame end up getting a total recoat? It seems like the time to do it if ever.
    Yo Craig,

    It just showed up this morning and is still in the shop. Tomorrow I ship it off to Joe Bell and he and the owner will decide what to do with it once Joe sees the bike. I hope they repaint it tip to tail in the original 'cha-ching green' - it's a candy green over a gold base coat and it's stunning.

    dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  8. #188
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    a rare opinion from me atmo -
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Kirk View Post
    He called Serotta and was told they no longer had anyone there that could do the work.
    mad painful-slash-lame.

  9. #189
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    You know, doing one of those jobs is like feeding a stray. Do it once, and it's yours forever.
    Eric Doswell, aka Edoz
    Summoner of Crickets
    http://edozbicycles.wordpress.com/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/edozbicycles/
    In Before the Lock

  10. #190
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    a rare opinion from me atmo -


    mad painful-slash-lame.

    I agree. It was sad to hear. Equally sad to hear was that he called two builders that Serotta recommended and neither returned his calls or emails. I don't get it. How hard is to respond? Are we all Soooo busy that we can't take the time to say' thanks but no thanks.'

    I was just happy to keep this cool bike on the road.

    Dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  11. #191
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by edoz View Post
    You know, doing one of those jobs is like feeding a stray. Do it once, and it's yours forever.
    You could be right. There are a lot of Serottas out there - who knows what will find its way to my door. Worse things have happened I suppose. If another cool one comes along I'll take the time to check it out.

    Dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  12. #192
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Kirk View Post
    It was sad to hear. Equally sad to hear was that he called two builders that Serotta recommended and neither returned his calls or emails.
    Wow.

    On both accounts

    Glad its working out well in the end!

  13. #193
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Estlund View Post
    Wow.

    On both accounts

    Glad its working out well in the end!
    Isn't that odd/sad? Why would a pro builder not return the note/call? Isn't is just polite? Ok so they don't want the work but that doesn't mean they should just leave someone hanging. This is such a puzzle to me.

    Life is a mystery.

    dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  14. #194
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Hey Dave,

    Have been wondering bout your thoughts on the Serotta Colorado Concept tubing and this as good a time as any to ask :) What was your involvement with it (or not)? What does it do or perhaps,... how did it change the ride characteristics of a bike? Have you diverged from it or has it influenced your frame building? Is it patented? I don't seem to see anything similar elsewhere except maybe in the use of over sized tubing.

    Always a pleasure..
     

  15. #195
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Kirk View Post
    Isn't that odd/sad? Why would a pro builder not return the note/call? Isn't is just polite? Ok so they don't want the work but that doesn't mean they should just leave someone hanging. This is such a puzzle to me.

    Life is a mystery.

    dave
    Dave, I'm certainly not the only one on this board (or that "other" one across the hall) that takes note of the positive way you respond to everyone, the neophyte and the not so new phyte. Thanks, keep it up. That golden rule thing works...no mystery here.
    Talk to you around Feb or March...should be my turn about then.
    Bruce King
     

  16. #196
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    Default Re: Kirk Frameworks

    Quote Originally Posted by roguedog View Post
    Hey Dave,

    Have been wondering bout your thoughts on the Serotta Colorado Concept tubing and this as good a time as any to ask :) What was your involvement with it (or not)? What does it do or perhaps,... how did it change the ride characteristics of a bike? Have you diverged from it or has it influenced your frame building? Is it patented? I don't seem to see anything similar elsewhere except maybe in the use of over sized tubing.

    Always a pleasure..


    Hey RD-mon,

    Thanks for the question.

    When I started at Serotta in 1989 they were already using the Colorado Concept (CC) tubes on some of the bikes. Some still used what we referred to as 'straight tubes' and others used the CC tubes. It was an exciting time as no one was doing anything like this. I had no input on the tubes as they were originally conceived and I think Ben Serotta deserves full credit for them and for getting the tube makers to think outside the box an figure out a way to actually make the damn things - not an easy thing in the mid to late 1980's.

    To be honest I've never been a big fan of the CC tubes - I guess I should say that as time went on I became less of a fan. I think they kicked ass compared to the old school 1" top tubesets (especially for larger/stronger riders) but as 'oversize' straight tubes became available I saw less advantage with the CC tubes and in some cases downsides I didn't like. I can't prove this but my experience tells me that the CC tubes (larger diameter near the BB) tend to focus the flex of the tube on the small end and this can lead to the bike having more propensity to speed wobble as the down tube twists at the head tube end. They can also give the bike a wooden feel and be too stiff for some smaller/lighter riders. I think an oversize straight tube focuses less stress on the front end of the down tube and flexes more evenly along it's length - and that to me is a good thing. While I worked at Serotta I had free rein to make and ride what ever I wanted to. I owned a number of CC bikes and I liked the Ti versions but the steel never felt right to me. I like straight tubes in steel. Ti flexed enough to give the bike some 'jump' but steel always felt like it was made of oak.

    The CC tubes are not patented. I suppose they could have been back in the day but Serotta was very much a hand to mouth operation at that time and I'll bet the money just wasn't there to make that happen. I think to a certain extent companies, for various reasons, tend to not rip each other off. Call is karma or good will or maybe even not wanting to admit that they didn't come up with the idea but they tend to not shit where they eat. I had a company blatantly copy my Terraplane stays for a show bike a number of years ago and the negative public feedback bit them in the ass bigtime. No one would buy one because the customers knew they they had 'borrowed' my idea. I think that for the most part the same thing has happened with the CC tubes. Everyone knows who's idea they were/are and no one want to be the asswipe slacker that steals if from the actual inventor.

    I hope that answers your question.

    The pleasure, BTW, is all mine.

    dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  17. #197
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by bking View Post
    Dave, I'm certainly not the only one on this board (or that "other" one across the hall) that takes note of the positive way you respond to everyone, the neophyte and the not so new phyte. Thanks, keep it up. That golden rule thing works...no mystery here.
    Talk to you around Feb or March...should be my turn about then.
    Bruce King
    Hey Bruce,

    It's good to know that my efforts are appreciated. My Mom will be proud.

    I read most of the various forums online and sometimes folks will chine in and say that they are working with a builder who went silent once they got a deposit and they can't get them to respond to communication of any sort despite numerous attempts. The mystery to me is why others that see this would sign up for the same treatment. There seems to be a 'rude French waiter' or 'soup nazi' thing going on here - or a 'he's an artiste and needs room and time to do his special work'. That is crap. The truth of the matter is that the phone rings and they monitor the call or the computer dings with a new email and they delete it. It's a conscious choice to ignore you the customer. I know when I'm on the other end of the relationship that and having something made for me that I have zero tolerance for being blown off and I take my bidness elsewhere. Life is too short to get yanked around.

    I have heard some builders say that they are too busy to answer the phone. IMO if you don't answer the phone then you needn't worry about being too busy for too long. I don't answer the phone when I have a torch lit but otherwise it's right there and i pick it up. It's easy to do and not even that heavy really.

    Thanks for noticing. I look forward to building for you.

    Dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  18. #198
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by bking View Post
    Dave, I'm certainly not the only one on this board (or that "other" one across the hall) that takes note of the positive way you respond to everyone, the neophyte and the not so new phyte. Thanks, keep it up.
    +1 - Just one of the reasons I will make the drive south to Bozeman one day!!!

    Jayme
     

  19. #199
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jayme View Post
    +1 - Just one of the reasons I will make the drive south to Bozeman one day!!!

    Jayme
    Cool.

    It's funny. To us here in the northern USA it sounds funny to hear someone say - "drive south to Bozeman.' It's all relative I guess but we here in Montana feel pretty northern.

    I welcome your visit to the balmy south. Bring your speedo! It's hot here in the south.


    dave
    D. Kirk
    Kirk Frameworks Co.
    www.kirkframeworks.com


  20. #200
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    Default Re: And now for something completely different.

    So Dave, how is the prototype work coming along? I love seeing this smoked out continue on. I bet there are many eager folk interested in what you have in store...
     

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