Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Getting the Materials Ready to Melt

My dad found this stripped bike frame a few years ago behind his office building.  He was excited because he thought he found something that might be of value but, as you can see, it turned out to be a Walmart special.

Still, he asked me if I might be able to come up with the missing pieces so that he could "ride it around the neighborhood to get a little bit of exercise."  I still feel a little bad because I kind of blew him off about it.

When I cleaned out his house after he passed a couple of years ago, I just couldn't bring myself to throw it away.  Although I definitely don't need a bike, I thought I might use some pieces off it for something someday.  Well what better way to mourn and shed some guilt than at 1200 degrees?!?!

Here's the main aluminum pieces I grabbed for this: the front part of the frame, the crank arms, the rear brake arms, and the pedal cages.  The rest went back in the junk pile to possibly be used for another project.  (Spoiler alert: keep an eye out for the shock on a future project, I already have in mind what I'm going to use if for.)

The angle grinder made short work of cutting the frame into workable lengths.  Unfortunately the frame also made short work of my cheapo angle grinder.  I managed to let the magic smoke out of it so now it no-worky.  Hmmm... I wonder if there are any worthwhile aluminum or brass pieces inside?  I know there should be a fair bit of copper.

Anyway, stripping the bike and getting everything ready to fire up the furnace took a bit longer than I intended.  Unfortunately, I only had time to get everything set up before I had to call it a night.

I did manage to get the flame going for a quick check though it wasn't interesting enough (or running long enough) to warrant a pic.  I am now, however, missing the hair on my left hand.  I'm going to have to be a bit more careful when I resume tomorrow.

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