Monday, 8 July 2013

Decking About

I haven't had a great deal of time in the last few weeks to work on the facile. My time has been spent on other stuff, mostly making the most of some good weather to crack on with my lovely wife's new deck. I've also been working on Tweed Pete's new saddle and painting some pinstripes for him. In addition, fellow quiz member Brian asked me to make him a temporary doohicky to turn his fully suspended MTB into a hard tail whilst he gets a replacement for the rear shock. None of it is hugely time consuming but it all adds up.

To recap, I'm trying to capture the style of an early 1890's saddle. Here are a few examples of what I mean with the dates of the publication I found the illustration contained in.

 Cyclist Annual  and Year Book 1892.

Cyclist Annual  and Year Book 1892.

Cyclist Annual  and Year Book 1893.

The Cyclist Year Book 1894.

The Cyclist Year Book 1894.

Pete came up trumps with some copper rivets, exactly the right size and easy on the wallet at only 9c each. They are designed for installing new brake or clutch linings on large vehicles. I'm going to buy a few spares whilst I can. The two side rivets on the nose were quite hard to set, the deep flaps made it hard to get in to head the rivets. I ended up making a device to squeeze rather than hammer them.

Knackered Wright's saddle.

Replacement Knight's saddle showing the 
fabulous new stamp that I forgot to mention ages ago now.

Another gratuitous photo.

The steps used are previously documented here and here when I made the saddle for the facile.

I broke my mill this week. The casting at the top of the column became loose on the column. This happened gradually, I couldn't understand why my cuts seems to be varying regardless of the dial settings. The casting is glued with Loctite to the column and the repair, once I'd identified the problem, was relatively easy. I simply heated the casting with a torch to destroy the remaining Loctite bond and then wiggled it off, a very good clean up and then re glue with some fresh Loctite. It appears to be OK now. The original Loctite has only lasted 37 years, I'll have to have a word with Dad about his workmanship.

In other news, my cycling has suffered since the bridge over the Ashley River has shut. All the good local cycling is the other side of the river, this side is the Canterbury Plains, flat, straight, boring roads. In desperation to find a hill to ride, I rediscovered the joy of riding a road bike on gravel roads. It can be a little hit or miss but at this time of year the roads are usually damp which keeps the dust down and often have a super smooth strip where vehicle tyres run. This strip is often smoother than the usual coarse chip of the sealed roads. I fondly imagine it is similar to how the Victorian cinder velodromes rode with a narrow, very smooth racing line.


  1. Rubbish saddle.

    You could much more easily have made one that looks like this:

    1. Your workmanship is improving Mr. Middleton.

  2. You may find the Flickr group Middlemore Saddles of interest.


    1. Just found it, thanks for the tip.