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  1. #1
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    The One downtube protection

    Good afternoon all! I have seen the threads about running car bra tape and other such protective films for rear triangle and downtube protection, but those seem like more of a scratch deterrent...looking for something a little heavier, like a carbon plate that a lot of bikes have nowadays...has anyone made one, or found one made for a different bike that fits pretty well on their One?

  2. #2
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    I currently use one of the Lizard Skins carbon-looking protectors (it's actually black leather, but it doesn't look like it at all). Works well against impacts since it's pretty dense.

    I've thought often about making one out of carbon fiber myself. Great minds must think alike It would be really easy and fairly cheap to do. I'd guess it would cost about $30-40 for everything if you shop around a bit. CarbonFiberDeals.com sells carbon cloth for around $15 per yard. You could make a ton of them with that much cloth.

    If you want to know how to do it, I can help. I've been playing with carbon since I was 9, and I used to build carbon fiber and kevlar sails for racing sailboats. Carbon is awesome.
    tangaroo: What electrolytes do chicken and turkey have again?
    rck18: All of them, because they're meat.

  3. #3
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    that would be awesome, although I live in an apartment, and have no garage or workspace...so making things is kind of difficult for me, unless it can be done on a sidewalk or in a kitchen...

  4. #4
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    i live in a small apartment too. I dream of garages, work benches, tools, and not having to move the bike to get to the coat rack. But I'm grateful for what I've got. It's home.

    Anyway, it really is easy to do on your own. No special tools or special ventilation needed for something like this. I have done it in my kitchen with a box fan blowing out the window, and it was fine. The sidewalk is fine too. The cheaper epoxies that you find in syringes don't give off too much odor or heat. Some, but not too much. The more fancy resins and hardeners like those used in aircraft or bike frames can be a different story.

    Making simple carbon parts like downtube guards is not rocket science. It's almost depressingly simple. The only tools you need are some carbon cloth, decently sharp scissors, a plastic card or rubber squeegee, wax paper, plastic wrap, slow-cure epoxy (I'd recommend at least 1 hour), and some 2" masking tape. Here's how it's done:

    1. Cut out 2-3 layers of the cloth (use a cardboard template if you like) in the general shape of the guard with scissors. Leave 1/4 to 1/2" extra around the whole perimeter. Cutting it can be tough, so take your time. WEAR GLOVES WHEN YOU HANDLE THE DRY FIBERS! I use my wife's dish washing gloves, which does not make her happy. Oh well, it's for the greater good.
    2. Mix some resin. Keep an eye on its cure time. You want to have it in position on the bike in half the curing time or earlier.
    3. Put each layer of cloth on wax paper and pour mixed resin on top. Use the card or squeegee to wipe/press the resin into the cloth. Press it through the fibers. Be thorough and make sure every bit is wet. Not dripping/oozing, just saturated.
    4. Layer the cloth pieces on each other and cover the top layer with some plastic wrap. You want no wrinkles in the plastic wrap. Press the layers together firmly and evenly.
    5. Place the carbon sandwich on the downtube, with the plastic wrap side against the tube. Remove the wax paper from the outside. Place some plastic wrap where the wax paper was. So now, it should be layered like this: Frame, plastic wrap, carbon layers, plastic wrap.
    6. Massage and smooth the 'sandwich' onto your frame. Push any air bubbles you feel or see out to the nearest edge. Once everything is very smooth and tight against your frame, carefully tighten it down to the frame with masking tape. Cover it completely, and try to keep the layers somewhat tight. The best thing is to have firm but very even in pressure across the entire guard. Uneven pressure will squeeze the resin to the areas where there is less pressure. Even pressure is the key to a good lookin' external surface.
    7. Let it dry for the full cure time specified by the epoxy.
    8. When dry, take it off the bike and peel off the plastic wrap (it might be a bit stuck, so take your time).
    9. Take it outside, and clean up the edges. Trim it down to size with some good scissors, tin shears, or better yet a Dremel tool or sander. The edges can also be sanded down, but that can take a while. Don't breathe the dust, it's not good for the lungs.
    10. When it looks perfect, spray it some clear lacquer spray paint or spray polyurethane (not necessary, but you can change the gloss level of the finish, and it looks nice. I like the full flat clear look myself).
    11. Stick it to your frame with something slightly padded and sticky, like very thin weatherstripping foam, mastick tape, or good double-sided tape. If you prefer zip-ties, you can add in tabs, trenches or holes to your carbon sandwich before you fix it to your bike to dry.


    That's it. It's really very easy, even if you're not mechanically inclined or don't have awesome tools. Dang it. All this talk has made me want to get off my butt and make one myself... My lizard skins guard is dead simple to buy and install, but carbon would protect better, and it's just so dang hot right now.
    tangaroo: What electrolytes do chicken and turkey have again?
    rck18: All of them, because they're meat.

  5. #5
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    This sounds like a project for next weekend!

  6. #6
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    I would like to get one for the Jedi.
    Can i find it or is it just like with The One, non existant...?

  7. #7
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    The One downtube protection

    3M anti slip tape it's about 3" wide cheap and a roll will last a long time.

  8. #8
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    I have just protected mine with 3M "helicopter" tape, but i would like to have something that could stand bigger impacts.
    I have a carbon downtube protection on my Nomad that works perfectly, but it's frame specific

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