[CR]Now: Bilaminate construction Was: Ritchey with faux lugs?!?

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Date: Thu, 20 May 2004 15:07:54 -0400
From: "Grant McLean" <Grant.McLean@SportingLife.ca>
Subject: [CR]Now: Bilaminate construction Was: Ritchey with faux lugs?!?
To: "Classic Rendezvous Mail List (E-mail)" <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>

Hi Curt,

Thanks for bringing this discusion back to the Ritchey.

As someone who has looked at many a mountain bike, i'm pleased by the look of the construction of this Ritchey. In an era (the 80's) when most builders were happy to Tig weld external gussets on their lugless frames, this Ritchey is elegent. It references in a traditional way the construction of lugs, and I think it's really neat.

I've always thought he was a class act. Even on his tig welded bikes, there is often a fillet attaching the seatstay in fastback style to the seat lug, and also under the downtube/headtube intersection. It doesn't appear he was afraid to take a few extra steps. I remember the Bicycle Guide article on him that said he was like an "American Cinelli".

Well done Tom!

Grant McLean Toronto.Ca

Chuck posted- Yes,
> and back in the day (1940s England), it was a shortcut to mass produce.
> Lugless and lugged.

This might be true but since this whole thing started about a Ritchey that wasn't built in the 40's nor mass produced in any era, I don't see how this is applicable. It seems analogous to saying lugged construction is a tool of mass production because of all of the mass produced PX-10's. Sure some lugged bikes were mass produced while some weren't but lugs aren't what defines this. Same for bilaminate construction. Some bikes were mass produced using this technique but bikes that were made this way aren't mass produced by virtue of bilamination. In the case of the Ritchey, you know the topic bike,fillet brazing a frame with the addition of decorative sleeves (bilamination) involves all of the steps to produce a fillet bike PLUS some of the steps used in lug brazing. How does this lend itself to mass production? It doesn't. If steps like we've seen historically were employed then yes some labor can be saved but still it isn't accurate to label bilamination as a way of mass production. It's a method of construction just like lugs or lugless that has been used for mass production and limited production. Certainly Tom Ritchey who was already building fillet bikes decided to add some additional work to his bikes as a method to produce more. Of course, given my criminal background all of this is suspect.

Curt Goodrich
Minneapolis, MN