Thursday, June 10, 2010

Filing Monty's Fork

For the past few days I have been very busy filing the various component parts of Monty's fork. First, the Nervex crown. For all their fame, these crowns are decidedly ugly out of the box. The casting is really rough (and we'll forgive that—this is a fifty year old crown.) Note, for example, the incredibly thick tangs (which are also pointing off in very different directions) and the ugly flat spots between the blade and steerer sockets.

I spent the day today trying to clean it up. I used my biggest round file to create a round transition between the blade sockets and steerer opening. The one thing I don't think I'll be able to do much with is the rounded-off transition between the top and the sides of the blade sockets. I've seen other Nervex crowns with perfect 90 degree transitions. Working with this old stuff gives you a lot of respect for the framebuilders of the mid-twentieth century, who not only made crowns like this look beautiful, but did no in great quantities every day. Here is what I've come up with so far (and yes, I'll need to add more silver to fill in the brake holes...):

I'll finish the filing once I've brazed in the blades.

Speaking of them, I also spent some time filing my dropouts today. Doing slotless dropouts creates a lot of extra filing work, but also gives you some extra room for creativity. I filed my scallops at a sort of weird angle, and also filed the dropouts themselves to give them a very circular shape.

Here's another look, backlit to bring out the odd shape.

Next step: brazing in the blades. Then waiting for my track dropouts to arrive, then finding some thin flat stock to cap my seatstays...

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