[CR] Inventment cast one piece headtube and lugs


Example: History:Norris Lockley

To: classicrendezvous@bikelist.org
Date: Mon, 24 Jan 2011 15:03:04 -0800 (PST)
From: gillies@ece.ubc.ca (donald gillies)
Subject: [CR] Inventment cast one piece headtube and lugs


A friend of mine in 1982 told me that TREK was trying to be innovative and save time in their frame manufacturing. In 1985 I bought a TREK 500 bicycle which not only had the 1-piece I.C. headtube, but also had a pretty cool bottom bracket that routed the cable into the bottom bracket shell and then inside the right chain stay and out of the dropout plugs, through a cable, straight to the derailleur - no rusting for the last 30 inches of cable run, and no needless friction either! Also those bikes had a cinelli-copy 1-piece seat cluster, too!!

A few years ago I got a like-new 1984 TREK 510 for $150 with the full victory gruppo and 501 tubing. This bike had regular (on topic, prugnat-like) lugs on the head tube, but the workmanship was the finest I had ever seen on any frame of mine and they even looked as if they were profiled, as they had only about a 2mm shelf on the seat and down tubes. The brazing on this lowly TREK outclassed hand built Schwinn Paramounts and Raleigh Team framesets of only a decade earlier.

Maybe the focus on automation is why TREK is still a going concern and both Schwinn and Raleigh have died at least twice since 1984. I presume that the lugs were investment-cast and they were probably brazed with the automatic brazing machines (1983 according to http://www.vintage-trek.com) that TREK was using for some of their joints in the mid 1980s.

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TREK went on to make a very early bonded aluminum frame from Tru Temper (TREK 2000), and an 1987 an early (but not earlier than ALAN or Vitus) bonded carbon frame (TREK 2500/2300/2200/2100 series), before making the all-carbon frame 5000-series frame in 1989. The last year for the bonded 2000-series carbon frames was 1998, and I owned a TREK 2300 (one of my sweetest rides ever) from 2000-2004. The 2300 was rated as one of the most compliant framesets in the Damian Rinard's frame deflection tests.

http://www.vintage-trek.com/Trek_timeline.htm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trek_Bicycle_Corporation

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- Don Gillies
San Diego, cA, USA