Alan, the puppy killer, and me.

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  • Back in February, I went to a cycle jumble at the 'Ciclo-officina di Modena'.
    For 5 euros i came home with two racks and this.
    /attachments/76816

    As you can see it's an Alan cyclo-cross frame, and as you can imagine it has a rather sorry story to tell.
    The story goes that it somehow fell into the hands of a keen young hipster/puppykiller who had read about this 'new' fixed wheel craze and wanted to create his very own 'bici scatto fisso'.
    Nothing wrong with that, however he felt the urge to do this........
    /attachments/76817

    thus depriving the frame of the possibility of returning it to its real use as a cyclocross bike.

    The hipster/puppykiller soon lost interest in the project and left it at the ciclo-officina. A short while later, he discovered that bike polo was the new black, and set about converting the Alan for bike polo, adding a pair of steel hybrid forks and coating it in desert camo gaffer tape in the process.

    Once again the project was never completed and the frame was abandoned at the officina where discerning members would look at it and discuss the owner's folly.

    His loss was my gain and it's now sitting in my shed.

    First I contacted ALAN for advice about the brake bosses. They told me that I needed to replace the rear triangle. I took it to my local frame builder, who said they could weld new ones if the tubes were made from 7000 series aluminum. I contacted ALAN again who confirmed that the tubes were indeed made form 7000 aluminum.

    So i went off to the frame builder and now looks like this.
    /attachments/76818
    /attachments/76819

    Any ideas what to do about the paint? What's the best way of stripping the paint from an ALAN?

    The plan is to turn into a cyclo-cross bike, with gears.
    The advantage of this project is that whatever I do, it will be an improvement.


    4 Attachments

    • Alan1.jpg
    • Freni3.jpg
    • Brakes.jpg
    • side.jpg
  • What's the best way of stripping the paint from an ALAN?

    Paint stripper or have a frame painter/similar bead blast it.

    I'd be tempted to see what the cost of anodising it would be. If it's realistic then get them to give it a pearl finish and anodise purple.

    Also maybe file/sand those boss welds a bit.

  • Paint stripper or have a frame painter/similar bead blast it.

    I'd be tempted to see what the cost of anodising it would be. If it's realistic then get them to give it a pearl finish and anodise purple.

    I was wondering if paint stripper might damage the glue in the joints, or maybe damage the aluminium. Anodising sounds good, but i'd need to investigate the cost as this is a bit of a budget build.

  • I was wondering if paint stripper might damage the glue in the joints, or maybe damage the aluminium. Anodising sounds good, but i'd need to investigate the cost as this is a bit of a budget build.

    I stripped my aluminium sintesi frame and it didn't get damaged :)

  • Anodising is dirt cheap, I paid about £40 for the Wifemobile (see thumbnail). But, and it's a big but, the finish has to be absolutely perfect before anodising or it'll look shite......


    1 Attachment

    • Lou's 120913.jpg
  • Anodising is dirt cheap, I paid about £40 for the Wifemobile (see thumbnail). But, and it's a big but, the finish has to be absolutely perfect before anodising or it'll look shite......

    Interesting. How do you get the perfect finish?

  • Don't neglect the balls.

  • ^^^ Nice Wife . . . mobile.

  • For the perfect finish use muscles. Actually, I used paint stripper first then emery cloth strips, then scotch pads. It took a bloody long time and any microscopic stain or discoloured area WILL show through the anodising. The actual anodising goes direct onto bare metal (I don't think it will work on a pearl finish). Bead or sand blasting might work to clean the frame up, but you'll still need to get it shiny, mine was more like a brushed finish, before anodising.

  • Very keen to see this puppy rise from the ashes - Boss welding looks good.

    re: stripping the paint. bear in mind that the active ingredient of most paint strippers is sodium hydroxide which eats aluminium so don't go leaving it for days on end covered in nitromors (if you're particularly worried, hose it down after you're done). And don't worry about the glue, AFAIK alan are bonded with epoxy which is based on similar chemicals to paint stripper.
    As everyone else has said, paint stripper is the best bet if you want it to end up shiny, the only other alternatives are heat (highly likely to damage the bonds), sand the paint off (looks like that might be hard work) or blasting - OK if you don't want it to end up shiny.

    Aluminium polishes up quite well, if you start with 400 grit wet & dry to get rid of big scratches and then work up in a few steps to 1600 - 2000
    After that use Autosol or Brasso and a buffing wheel (buffing mops on a dremel work well for details) and you can get cotton mops to go on drills or angle grinders.
    If you're a patient soul you can do it with a rag too.

  • /attachments/79491

    I've stripped off the paint. I can now think about polishing it.
    But there is a small problem.
    /attachments/79492

    As you can see, there is a tiny crack in the bottom bracket shell. It's on the drive side. There are no other cracks, and i haven't taken out the bottom bracket yet to check if it is cracked on the inside. I only noticed it when i took the paint off.

    Is this a big problem? Should I abandon the project? Or is this something that's not such a big deal?


    2 Attachments

    • NoPaint.jpg
    • BB.jpg
  • Is it not a casting mark?

  • ^ I agree.
    Looks like the curve of the BB shell outer changes at the split line.
    To clarify this, I've had a go at sketching along the line.
    If the casting tool was made in 2 pieces, that line you're looking at is probably just a witness from where the 2 halves of the tool come together when it was cast

  • Y u no keep rad camo tape?

  • ^ I agree.
    Looks like the curve of the BB shell outer changes at the split line.
    To clarify this, I've had a go at sketching along the line.
    If the casting tool was made in 2 pieces, that line you're looking at is probably just a witness from where the 2 halves of the tool come together when it was cast

    Possibly. The line is very feint, but it is also quite uneven. Surely if it is a casting mark then it would be straight rather than wavy?

  • Y u no keep rad camo tape?

    Coz it wud b disrispekt 2 ALAN.

  • Possibly. The line is very feint, but it is also quite uneven. Surely if it is a casting mark then it would be straight rather than wavy?

    Not 100% sure - you'll need to remove the BB to look from the inside...
    I did a quick google image search for "sand casting parting lines" which was pretty fruitless, but it did return this image of a rather rough and wavy looking split line.....

  • Has this been resolved yet?

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Alan, the puppy killer, and me.

Posted by Avatar for girodibeniamino @girodibeniamino

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