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  1. #1
    650b me
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    Slightly OT: steel sheet

    I like to baby my bikes, and I own a Subaru Forester. I've been trying to figure out a way to transport two bikes inside the car. I've come up with a design (in my head) consisting of a steel base plate with a 3/4" OD cro-moly tube brazed to it, slightly elevated, to mount the thru-axle fork.

    Been sourcing stock on Wicks Aircraft's website this morning. A sheet of cro-moly 3/16" thick x 6" x 36" goes for $68.74. I figure I could get 3 base plates out of this piece. But is it overkill to pay for cro-moly sheet for this application? Are there cheaper steel alloys that would braze just as well?

  2. #2
    RCP Fabrication
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    Cold rolled or hot rolled flat bar will be more than enough, and braze just fine. Cold rolled will cost more, but will have significantly less mill scale on it. Also, get bar stock, not sheared sheet, it's usually cheaper, and the edges do not need anything done to them.

    3/16 x 6 x 36 cold rolled is ~$44

    3/16 x 6 x 36 hot rolled is ~$24

    I get this kind of stuff from Online Metal Store | Small Quantity Metal Orders | Metal Cutting, Sales & Shipping | Buy Steel, Aluminum, Copper, Brass, Stainless | Metal Product Guides at OnlineMetals.com or Metals DepotŪ - Buy Metal Online! Steel, Aluminum, Stainless, Brass

    Metals depot is usually always cheaper, but will not cut to specific lengths.

  3. #3
    650b me
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    Just the answer I was looking for. Thanks!

  4. #4
    RCP Fabrication
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    No problem.... Now, because this is the frame building section of the forum. I will have to insist that you post pictures of this creation as it progresses.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by RCP FAB View Post
    No problem.... Now, because this is the frame building section of the forum. I will have to insist that you post pictures of this creation as it progresses.
    Seconded!

  6. #6
    Randomhead
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    unfortunately there aren't any small steel dealers around here, but when I was in Utah I had a local steel supplier that would cut the bar to length for me. They were a lot happier if I bought a complete length, which is 20', but then they would cut it to whatever length I wanted. I was making wood clamps at the time, so cutting the pieces into 1' long lengths wasn't really that inviting of an idea. It was a lot cheaper than alternative sources too. If you are just buying cold rolled, there are plenty of supplier around.

  7. #7
    650b me
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    Quote Originally Posted by RCP FAB View Post
    No problem.... Now, because this is the frame building section of the forum. I will have to insist that you post pictures of this creation as it progresses.
    You got it! I placed my order with Metals Depot today. Two pieces of bar stock and a two foot length of tubing for $33! Thanks again, you saved me a lot of money.

    I'll whip up a CAD model of the design and post it here while I'm waiting to receive the steel.

  8. #8
    650b me
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    Don't hold your breath...

    Here it is, in all its glory:

    Slightly OT: steel sheet-assembly.jpg

  9. #9
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    Nice, I was thinking about brazing up some roof rack 15mm thru axle converter guys for my roof racks. would be about the same thing.

  10. #10
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    Fast forward to the finished product

    Hey, this was a fun project for a noob. It was nice to be able to complete a project from start to finish in a weekend, unlike my frame #2 which is taking months. Always good to practice cutting, filing, and especially, brazing steel. I couldn't get the bronze to flow on the 3/16" plate until I cranked the torch up. (Duh)

    I took it on it's maiden voyage shortly after completing it. My bike got to go along for the ride to the library to return some books. It rocked back and forth a bit, but didn't tip over, even over slow speed bumpy turns. The biggest issue was having the bike roll towards the back of the car, until the brake levers were rattling against the rear window. I'm already brainstorming on ways to prevent this migration.

    Without further ado, the finished product:Slightly OT: steel sheet-dscn7976.jpgSlightly OT: steel sheet-dscn7973.jpgSlightly OT: steel sheet-dscn7977.jpg

  11. #11
    Nemophilist
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    Rubber band on rear brake lever.
    Most people ply the Well Trodden Path. A few seek a different way, and leave a Trail behind.
    - John Hajny, a.k.a. TrailMaker

  12. #12
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    Take a look at 3M Dual Lock. It's like velcro on steriods. I use it on a water ski to hold the boots to the ski. The sticky back stuff sticks really well although I can't say how it'll stick to the rubber and I don't know if the rubber is stuck to the car. A place called the iTape store has it online.

  13. #13
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    What size tubing did you use for the fork mount?

  14. #14
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    2 fat bikes, 5" tires, all wheels on, stacked on top of each other laying flat with Ford bumper wrap (great stuff-have to get from body shops - they throw it out) on the bottom and between them in the back of my '10 Prius with all doors closed, and both front seats still back.

    Not a scratch on anything and will try to get a pic to post.

  15. #15
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    I was thinking Velcro. But first I'll try Trailmaker's suggestion - start with the easiest possible solution. That just might work because in my car, the rear wheel rests on the seat back, which does not quite fold flat, so it is on a slight decline and wants to roll forward, i.e., towards the rear of the vehicle.

    The tubing is 3/4" OD x .065" wall. It's a great fit for 15mm thru-axles.

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