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    Default Fit Kit Systems Alignment Table Design

    Thinking of replicating (to some degree) the Fit Kit Systems old alignment table that is no longer made. I was wondering if anyone has any information regarding the size and type of thrust bearings used on the bottom bracket post, as well as any other details on how it worked? I'm trying to decide it it's best to use opposing conical type thrust bearings like those used on an automotive hub.

    Thanks.

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    Default Re: Fit Kit Systems Alignment Table Design

    I can't help with bearing specs but have had a few smarter than I people shake their heads at the whole concept of a bearing supported reference surface. I have wondered if a clamped pivot, like Anvil uses on some of their jugs, might be more repeatable then a bearinged pivot.

    Then there's the whole tracking VS bio alignment and whether the Keith Bontrager process is "better" than the whipping post. Andy
    Andy Stewart
    10%

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    Default Re: Fit Kit Systems Alignment Table Design

    Good point, and one that I was thinking about as well. I like the idea from a theoretical perspective. However, I really think it introduces an enormous amount of potential problems. I'll work on some ideas more along the clamped pivot line. Thanks Andy.

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    Default Re: Fit Kit Systems Alignment Table Design

    Fit kit came out with its beam alignment system as a way of solving their problem of not being able to align cleats with their cleat alignment system because many steel frames were not properly aligned. This was in the era when a slot in a cleat fit tightly onto the pedal's cage. The cleat was nailed onto the bottom of the shoe. It didn't move and if it wasn't positioned properly, knee issues could result. But a misaligned frame can also cause knee problems. If the seat tube is not precisely 90 to the treads of the bottom bracket shell, that can cause knee issues too. What happens on a misaligned frame is that the seat tube will automatically go straight up and down when the bicycle is being ridden resulting in the BB threads being crooked. That translates into having the pedal platforms not being level to the ground and for some people this crookedness bothers knees. That was one of the problems the Fit Kit was trying to solve with their cleat alignment system. So they came up with an alignment system to solve the other knee bothering problem. They made it a beam so it took up a smaller footprint and was easier to ship. Not because it was the ideal way to align frames.

    As a framebuilder, I like a full sized table for many reasons. I also believe that referencing the alignment on the frames we build off of BB threads makes the most sense for the same reason Fit kit came out with its alignment system in the first place. Of course we all know that the face of a BB can never be made perfectly square to the threads. I choose the drive side after it has been faced on a whipping post. I think it is within tolerance. It is easy to get into the weeds with frame alignment philosophy. I don't belong to the club that says it isn't that important.

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    Default Re: Fit Kit Systems Alignment Table Design

    Very interesting, Doug. I started at the end of the fixed cleat era, and remember having to set them up slightly loose to allow the knee to find a natural resting point. I really enjoy frame alignment. I built my own table when I started building, and fashioned it along the lines of a narrow Blanchard ground steel plate simply to save room in a small shop. As you know, the real drawback is having to shift the frame around in order to check all the tubes (not great for accuracy). It really is time to go with a full size table. I have thought about building my own steel alignment table with webbing. However, I've been looking at the pricing of steel vs a granite inspection table, and I'm not sure I would be saving any money by going that route.

    I'm assuming that if I go the granite route, I can drill holes in the table with masonry bits to mount a post? Thanks again.

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    Default Re: Fit Kit Systems Alignment Table Design

    Craig,

    If you hop onto BidSpotter or other industrial auction sites, you'll often find framebuilder sized surface plates for a ridiculously low amount of money. Post auction, they usually show up on Craigslist for 2-3x what they sold for. Just be warned that some auctions require you to hire a rigger to move heavy stuff off site.

    It took me a little while but I found my surface plate that way.

    Once I had mine in the shop I leveled it as best as possible and used my drill press with a diamond hole saw to cut a hole as close as possible to vertical (plasticine clay around the hole and flooded with water).
    From there I loaded the hole with some ridiculous epoxy I bought from McMaster. A grade 8 bolt (1/2" x 13) was screwed into my whipping post and then wrapped with teflon tape. Then I screwed a knurled threaded insert onto that and pressed it all into the epoxy hole.
    I hoped I could remove both the bolt and whipping post if I ever needed to move. Unfortunately, the bolt is in there forever BUT the post comes off with enough persuasion.

    Table was $200.
    Van to move it was $40.
    Scrap of steel for the whipping post was $30
    Drill bit was ~$15 on amazon
    Epoxy was probably $25.

    It's not perfect but it works well enough for what I do.

    If I need to retire I can open up my own Coldstone Creamery.

    Epoxy was probably $20-ish.
    elysian
    Tom Tolhurst

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