Section 5. Concerns & Challenges

Have I any concerns?

Only one : Is my Bottom Bracket Shell wrapped sufficiently with hemp rope? And it is a concern because I cannot do anything to rectify this issue if it becomes a problem. The hemp rope wrapped around the bottom of the seat tube, down tube, both chainstays, and the bottom bracket shell, looks great and secure EXCEPT that there seems to be very little rope below the BB shell. Have I missed something important? Will it allow the BB Shell to move within the joint? Could it weaken the whole structure of the joint - which looks like the most important joint for structural integrity of the frame? On that last question, I seriously doubt the it will be contributory, but on the BB shell secure attachment questions - I am not so sure. Hence the concern.

I have a few challenges as well : But these are things I still have to workout and although they could be troublesome I just have to workout the solutions. Here is a not exactly exhaustive list :

  • Chainline : Or put better, what BB spindle length do I need to make sure the inner chainring does not foul, or rub, the chainstay? The spec for the chainset says 113mm spindle, but my bamboo bike is a bit "fat" (bamboo being a thicker tube than standard), and I have tested with a 110.5mm (only one I have) and it is quite a bit short. Having done some tests with this short chainset, I think I need a 116.5 - so I have ordered a 118. Hopefully it works without resulting in my chaiset being too wide and putting my chain at an acute angle when running on a 7 speed cassette. A side issue here is also will my front derailleur fit when the chainset is in place - but I think this should be ok.
  • How do I get a back brake to fit : Given that the brake bridge is too high and too far from the wheel rim. I was planning to create an aluminium drop bolt structure to allow the brake to be fitted lower down the seat stays. Although I am also thinking of trying to make the dropbolt structure from hardwood - perhaps being more appropriate for a bamboo bike?
  • Shimano RX100 STI Shifters : At the moment, these don't work. And I have planned the bike around this system - an old (1996) version of a modern gear and braking system. It is "only" 2 x 7 speed, but that is perfect for this bike and the use it will get. I have found a website which gives a demonstration of striping, cleaning, lubricating, and reassembling these units, and at time of writing, I am in the middle of doing just this. Hopefully all will be well in a day or two.

Concerns and Challenges
  • Concern. Not a lot of hemp rope keeping the BB shell attached - is this a fatal mistake?
  • Challenge. What length BB spindle? This is with a 110.5mm and the inner chainring it tight against the hemp rope and the spindle is not yet engaged
  • Challenge. Another view of the inner ring in contact with the hemp rope of the chainstay
  • Challenge. Shimano STI lever dismantled awaiting clean, lube, and reassemble, and will hopefully then be in working order
And for my next trick....

Despite my fear of "cracks" which I referred to at the start of this article, the only crack that I have seen or heard since beginning this job is the Irish version "craic" (which as we all know means "having a great time"). This piece of work had indeed been great craic and I'm now moving into more familiar territory of assembling a bike. What could go wrong from here.........?

End 5. Concerns & Challenges

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