Talk:Lugged steel frame construction

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Former good article Lugged steel frame construction was one of the Engineering and technology good articles, but it has been removed from the list. There are suggestions below for improving the article to meet the good article criteria. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
May 26, 2007 Good article nominee Listed
June 29, 2008 Good article reassessment Delisted
Did You Know A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "Did you know?" column on August 24, 2006.
Current status: Delisted good article
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Does anyone have any photos of individual lugs with permission to use them on wikipedia? Or any photos of a frame with painted lugs to highlight their location? Moxfyre 17:09, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

I have some unbuilt lugs, I'll take a photo for the article. LDHan 18:29, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

Awesome, thanks! Moxfyre 18:59, 21 August 2006 (UTC)
I have found the lugs at last, and have uploaded a pic. LDHan 16:48, 10 November 2006 (UTC)


Isn't it misleading to say that lugged frames in particular are preferred for ease of repair when touring? Am I wrong to believe that welding equipment (used for cars, local bicycles, machinery, etc) is much more commonly found in developing countries than brazing equipment, and that therefore a welded steel frame would be at least as easy to repair as a lugged one, as long as it is steel? Mglg 00:08, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

While it's correct that welding equipment is common as well, in practice it's much easier to repair a lugged frame. I think there are at least 2 reasons for this:
  1. a tube can be removed from a lugged steel frame without damaging the joint (since only the filler is melted, not the steel), whereas removing a welded tube will inevitably screw up the joint in some way
  2. welding bicycle tubing requires fairly careful temperature and process control in order to produce a strong joint. This might not be such a concern out in the field, when you just want to get home, but it would probably make a touring cyclist junk the frame as soon as they made it back to civilization. Brazing is less sensitive. Moxfyre 00:14, 25 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, yes, if your goal is to fully restore the bike to its original condition, then I agree. Good luck finding Reynolds 531 dubble-butted tubing in rural Tanzania... I feel very strongly about field-repairability when I tour, but what I mean by that is simply to restore the bike to sufficient function that one can continue the trip. Welding a piece of steel pipe over the damage serves that purpose beautifully. I have a hard time imagining a bike that has had its frame broken on a remote trip (say, by being hit by a truck, or being tied to the roof of a bus and having a crate of goats tied on top) being in any shape worth restoring fully, and even if it were I don't see why I would want to spend precious trip time on it, rather than doing the quick fix in the field and postponing any careful restoration until I got back home.
Note that some quick fixes can't be done on a lugged frame (it can't be welded near the lugs, because of the mixture of different metals), so you may be forced to find that precisely-fitting replacement tubing that you can braze, whether or not you want full restoration. In many countries you would have to have that tubing sent from abroad, which means getting yourself, your stuff, and your wrecked bike to a major city, without damaging the frame further, and waiting a long time. In my eyes, that's less field repairability, not more. Mglg 19:13, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, you certainly have more real-world experience than me in this! However, I've heard other touring cyclists say they DO prefer lugged steel. Have any suggestions for how to reword/rewrite this? Moxfyre 13:55, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

I've removed a number of instances of the word "easy" in reference to field-repairability. I also feel strongly about field-repairability of my touring machine, but I suspect that the other touring cyclists that do prefer lugged steel are going mostly on gossip. Any bicycle tube has thin walls that are somewhat sensitive to temperature. Less perhaps so for lugged joints, but not so little that a non specialist can do a decent job at repairing a bike frame, and certainly not easily.--Keithonearth (talk) 08:15, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

Is this the reference being refered to here? I assume so as the title and date are the same. As such, in the context, I don't think it makes the point, as the Q&A refer to a comparison of aluminium and steel frames, not of welded and lugged steel frames. Let me point out that I am a fan of steel bikes, 2 or my 3 bikes are cro-mo, and I'm replacing my Alu with a lugged cro-mo in the spring. What I take issue with in this article is that seems to suggest that anyone can fix a lugged frame, while from what I've read, (trying to find the name of that book in the dusty corners of my brain) and what I have heard from bicycle mechanics more experienced than myself, is that it is a very skilled operation, require expensive mitering tools and a specialized jig. Yes, steel frames are more reliable, and repairable than aluminium, but we shouldn't suggest that a tube on a lugged steel bike can be swapped out in remote areas. They can be fixed, but by an experienced professional frame builder (rare, to say the least), and the tube would have to be ordered in to get the right diameter(time consuming). Or improvised repairs are plausible, but this is not what the context suggests, nor is that particular to Lugged steel, it's common to steel.--Keithonearth (talk) 08:45, 31 December 2008 (UTC)
I can't use my own experience of having a rear drop-out brazed back into its stay by the local blacksmith in Inkpen, Berkshire while on tour, partly because it wasn't a lug, and partly because it's original research: hence the ref, above. As User:Mglg points out, it's having this possibility that saved the tour. There is a fuller article on this topic in a more recent issue of the magazine and, if I've the time, I'll flick back through my old copies to find it. --Old Moonraker (talk) 12:11, 31 December 2008 (UTC)
Ok, I'll hold off changeing the statement for now. But if it's ok with you, I'd like to take down the reference, because I don't think it makes the point. I guess part of the the confusion may be when the page says "remote areas" I wasn't thinking of Berkshire, I had Tibet in mind, or other developing countries with low population density. I've done a very little bit of touring in Asia, and travelled by public transport pretty extensively, and I think the sort of damage that could be repaired by local metal workers would be vary unlikely. I mean, anything that would require replacing a tube would not be able to be done (due to the difficulties in getting one of the right diameter). Anything that wouldn't require replacing a tube would be unlikely to stop a trip. (obviously in your case this was not true.) And I think your story is applicable, as I think that lugged frames have brazed dropouts, and welded frames aren't. I've got a story too, A friend of mine was riding in Thailand and his aluminium rack cracked, and he took it to a local welder. (He knew a decent amount of Thai, but not about metal work) The welder got to work with the welding equipment, and proceded to destroy a large portion of the rack, because he didn't even check to see what kind of metal it was before getting to work. When I think of what think walled tubes the lugged frames of China or India are made from (and how I've seen them messily repaired) I would think a local metal worker would be overly enthusiastic in heating up the lugs, and that a 80's lugged frame from the west, or a rivendale, or whatever, wouldn't stand up to the heat. I'm a bit surprised your local blacksmith was able to do it well, did he have experience with bicycles? The statement probably holds true for a Flying Pigeon, but I've ridden one of those for a 700 km in China, and don't recommend it (nor is it referring to a flying pigion, it's referring to all lugged frames). Maybe this discussion is more appropriate for wikitravel, but I'm enjoying it anyways, daydreaming about tours in the depths of winter. :-) --Keithonearth (talk) 07:24, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
The reference doesn't fully support the contention that fine-quality repairs to lugged frames can be carried out in the back of beyond and perhaps this is the aspect of the text that needs changing. I'm still looking for the reference for touring preferences, but it won't claim that much. Meanwhile, an off-topic anecdote from a LBS mechanic I was on tour with last year: internal corrosion had eaten away at someone's lugged steel frame and the seat tube fractured while away on tour. Evidently it was repaired with a broom handle and cable ties so that the machine was able to finish the tour. However, the BS potential in this tale is high as the LBS sold me a titanium frame as a result! --Old Moonraker (talk) 09:11, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
It's my contention that repairability is primarily a result of the frame being steel, not of it being lugged. Your reference supports my argument, as does the guy at the LBS. That said, I've also worked in enough bike stores to think that although there are very experienced knowledgeable people working in the industry, there's plenty of people who just talk like they know what they are talking about. It's so hard to tell them apart. I'm going to try to edit it in a way that we both can accept, I think I can do that, but let me know what you think of it.--Keithonearth (talk) 17:49, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
Happy to leave it with you. --Old Moonraker (talk) 19:46, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Likewise! --ǝɹʎℲxoɯ (contrib) 23:52, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the votes of confidence, I hope it looks ok to you all. I think it should satisfy everybody, but if not we can work with it.--Keithonearth (talk) 04:58, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

The book that was lurking in the dusty corners of my brain was The Paterek Manual, (an awesome book) I've got my hands on a copy and been looking threw it for useful references. It has an extensive amount of information on repairing lugged bicycle frames, but few clear facts that directly relate to field repairability. It does talk a lot about not getting the tubing too hot, and ways of avoiding heating the tubing more than necessary. He recommends taking a brass brazed joint apart cold, using a die grinder, files as the remelt temp of brass is higher than the melt temp of brass from the rod. (apparently brass for brazing contains important additives that lower the melting temp, these precipitate out when the joint is originally brazed, so the remelt temp is higher.) He recommends not trying to fix a brass brazed fork, and each task goes to great length to limit the amount of heat applied to the join. I don't mean this to sound like an "I told you so" blurb, just trying to let you know what I'm basing my ideas on. --Keithonearth (talk) 20:28, 18 March 2009 (UTC)

GA Nomination[edit]

This article has passed under the GA criteria. Congrats! themcman1 Talk 11:32, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

GA Sweeps[edit]

This article has been reviewed as part of Wikipedia:WikiProject Good articles/Project quality task force in an effort to ensure all listed Good articles continue to meet the Good article criteria. In reviewing the article, I have found there are some issues that may need to be addressed.

  • The main section of this article, Method of construction, has the text squeezed between left- and right-aligned images.
  • From the lead: "For most of the history of the bicycle, steel has been the material of choice for high-quality bicycle frames (though its dominance has waned in the last two decades)." The last two decades from when? Phrasing like that is certain to age.
  • There are two sections – Types of lug and Finding lugged steel frames today – that are entirely unreferenced.
  • Many claims are made without sourcing, for instance: "In most lugged steel frames, the lugs have a simple pointed shape. The lug's gentle curves maximise the strength of the join, while minimising the possibility of stress risers, which would otherwise make the frame prone to cracking at the end of the lug." Where does that information come from? "Particularly fine lug-work is highly prized by some bicycle collectors." Who says so?
  • Is it "investment cast" or "investment-cast"?
  • I am concerned about the list of sources for lugged steel frames in Finding lugged steel frames today. Wikipedia is not a directory.
  • The External links section needs to be pruned. Please take a look at WP:EL, and keep only those links that add further information to the subject of the article. A list of professional frame builders, for instance, is linkspam, and does not qualify. --Malleus Fatuorum (talk) 19:11, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

I will check back in no less than seven days. If progress is being made and issues are being addressed, the article will remain listed as a Good article. Otherwise, it may be delisted (such a decision may be challenged through WP:GAR). If improved after it has been delisted, it may be nominated at WP:GAN. Feel free to drop a message on my talk page if you have any questions, and many thanks for all the hard work that has gone into this article thus far. Regards, Malleus Fatuorum (talk) 19:11, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

As these issues have not been addressed, this article has been delisted and the article history updated to reflect that fact. If you disagree with this decision it may be challenged through WP:GAR. --Malleus Fatuorum (talk) 00:05, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Lugged steel frames today: Globalize[edit]

This section only refers to N America, and focuses on 70's & 80's frames. In Asia the popular utility bicycle there use lugged steel (High Ten, I guess) construction. What's the situation in various European countries? Are not the Dutch utility bikes also lugged? I would think the countries that are more sports cycling orientated would more closely parallel N America but I don't know...I'll look into it. Anyone have any leads?--Keithonearth (talk) 08:46, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

Shouldn't companies such as Rivendell be mentioned since they manugacture lugged frames? (talk) 07:04, 29 March 2014 (UTC)


Recently the tags on this article for category:Manufacturing & category:Metallurgy removed from it. I think they were appropriate and would like to see them put back. May I ask why they were taken off, I missing something here? --Keithonearth (talk) 03:24, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

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