February 01, 2016
Woodchurch based Timmy Rowan specialises in making bespoke hand made bicycle frames. Graduate from the Somerset Bicycle Academy, Timmy continued implementing his skill as a bicycle frame builder; crafting each frame from scratch. Timmy’s attention to material use and detail has already won him two awards for his work at Rowan Frameworks.
When Timmy first started frame making, he worked on fragmented frame sections to practice the elements used to build full bike frames. Timmy built the equivalent of thirty frames in separate parts before committing to his first build. Seen below is an example of Timmy practising his brazing skills.
Since his early days of frame making, Timmy now uses various metal combinations to make his frames. Based inside an agricultural barn in Woodchurch, Timmy designs measures and mitres each section of the frame with precision. Before cutting, Timmy ensures that each tube section is correctly angled using tubing blocks. The frame tubes are secured in a vice prepared for cutting and filing, assisted only by a digital angle gauge. He describes in one of his social media posts about the precariousness of the frame tubing preparation.
Certain frame tubes can require flaring and curving which Timmy carries out with hand tools. Frame tubes prepared, they are angled, set and artfully brazed together to join each tube in the frame. Brazing with a torch and rod fuses the two pieces of tube together. The flux coated joints left behind from brazing are then hand smoothed. Proper filing produces a crisp joint with no trace of pitting or roughness remaining from the Brazing process.
A hand brazed seat cluster before smoothing. The white residue seen in the image above is the flux, a necessary purification agent used to prevent oxidising within the joint.
The frame is fully prepared for painting with each vertice and face completely rubbed down and cleaned. Timmy takes particular joy from the seat cluster seen above and below. ‘Scooped’ detailing at the tube ending illustrates his creativity and skill.
Having won two simultaneous awards as part of ‘Bespoked’ 2015 for best newcomer and overall best in show, Timmy demonstrates an outstanding degree of craftsmanship in his work. The charming detailing in his work is intoxicating. Using the small heat brand die in the image below, Timmy discreetly positions his 'RF' logo.
Made in Devon, tasteful, award winning and brilliant looking bicycle frames are being bespoke built. Cyclist or not, the imagery seen on the Rowan Frameworks Instagram feed is a must for anyone who enjoys metal work and making. Follow Timmy’s story via his Instagram, links below.
The Bicycle Academy - Somerset
April 11, 2016
March 28, 2016
March 14, 2016
New Optical Collection
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