Zheng Chin Design

incomplete, imperfect, impermanent

Mark 3 Finished!

Mark 3 is now complete!

SONY DSC

After 1 month and a few weeks of waiting for parts to come in, Mark 3 is now complete! well almost, apart from a new fork and a shorter stem! I’m very happy with the build, the components are great, the finish is solid, the colour scheme worked out well, and of course it rides!

The bike weighs in at an unofficial 9.4kg and the frame is an official 2.3kg, it is running a Sram force groupset with Mavic cosmic elite aero wheels, Deda zero 100 handlebars, 3t arx stem, generic fork (replacing), Thomson elite seatpost and topped off with a Fizik Arione saddle. The frame is finished with 3 fused coats of epoxy, and two top coats of varnish, giving it that nostalgic wood finish found on many boats, but still providing the best waterproofing finish.

For its test ride the Yarra Boulevard, because of its bumpy roads, hills and fast paced riding has given me insight into how my frame handles. It’s definitely stiff, the bottom bracket holds its own well, and has the perfect amount of flex and give, its not super stiff by any standard but comfortable, however the frame does tend to ride harshly, meaning almost all bumps are felt on the road, I’m unsure if this is due to the Mavic cosmic wheels, being deep dish, or the home brand carbon fork, I do have a feeling though, that this is because of the overly beefy top tube, down tube and seat stays, producing a stiff frame that is a little unforgiving. But a little stiffness is well worth the feeling of riding something solid.

Build time of Mark 3 has taken considerably less time to complete than prototype 2.  Partly due to the design feature of splitting the top section into two parts, reducing total layup time, learning new skills and honing the older ones and investing in machines meaning the right tool for the right job.

Mark 4 is in the works now, and will be an improvement on Mark 3. The things that I will be reassessing are:

  1. The weight of the frame. Currently the frame weighs in at 2.3kg which was the ball park I was aiming for, however 1.5kg to 2kg is my ultimate goal, this will be possible by hollowing out the down tube and top tube, thinning out the bike and purchasing better grade steel for my parts.
  2. Down tube. I’ve decided for Mark 4, to split the down tube section into two parts, meaning I can hollow out the frame, and that each veneer that I resaw will take less time, being 85mm wide rather than the initial 170, as well as layup and clamp time. And also hollowing out the top tube.
  3. Welded bottom bracket/seat tube. My seat tube and bottom bracket are mechanically welded through a screw and epoxy, however since I am choosing to separate my bottom section, it means if I can pre weld my seat tube and bottom bracket together, It would be a matter of slotting it in, and getting everything pre aligned.
  4. Internal cable routing. As I am hollowing out the frame, It means I will be able to route my cables internally, keeping the clean lines of the wood.
  5. Drop out design. Rather than cutting into the wood for the drop outs, I will have a steel/alloy lug CNCed so they can sit over the wood and act as a design feature, allowing me to change dropouts for different needs.
  6. Jig. Purchasing or building a jig that will give me 100 percent perfect alignment of my frame.

Construction and design of Mark 4 will be starting very soon, however I am also in the process of developing a female wooden bicycle, so keep a look out for something sexy!

😀

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2 comments on “Mark 3 Finished!

  1. Jackson
    March 3, 2013

    Whats the brand name called ? Fujitsa ?

    • Fujitsa
      March 3, 2013

      Unsure yet, may just use my name Zheng Chin

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This entry was posted on March 3, 2013 by in News, Uncategorized.
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