Opinions on TBA style frame building course

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  • wondering if anyone on here has done a framebuilding course? I'm thinking of doing it, but its a lot of moneys. Is it worth it?

  • I've done two framebuilding courses, both at Enigma with Geoff Roberts, who now does his own framebuilding courses. I really enjoyed both of them. And I got two new frames out of them. Yay! I'll almost certainly be going back to do another course with Geoff.

  • What he said^

  • ok cool,thanks for the heads up

  • Has anyone on here done courses specifically at The Bicycle Academy and/or Downland Cycles...?

  • im very tempted to do the tba 7 day
    just gotta figure out dates, it seems to have a good rep

  • This is the order I would rate frame building courses:

    1. Geoff Roberts
    2. TBA
    3. Downlands

  • @coldharbour, have you thought about offering a frame building course, especially given your new space?

  • No, I hate teaching. I am mostly selfish and don't get a warm fuzzy feeling from sharing knowledge. ;)

    TBA are opening a London branch I think.

  • @coldharbour, I hear you Meh!!
    I reckon it would be very popular if you ran a frame building course

  • Here's a write up of the framebuilding course I did at Downland Cycles https://www.lfgss.com/conversations/2861­45/

    I also did the fillet brazing masterclass at TBA last year also which was really good and informative. Also they did mention about opening a place in London then also.

  • Thanks @danielj, that's exactly the kind of write-up I was looking for.
    And thanks @coldharbour for the ratings.

  • Here's my write-up of the two courses I did at Enigma with Geoff.

  • Thanks. I did read that back when you first posted it, but enjoyed reading it again today too.

  • Any opinion on the Dave Yates courses? I know he only does a couple a year.

  • I don't think it's very easy to get on.

    My super serious ratings system is based around knowing who is teaching you. With Geoff you know who you are getting, someone who has a history of building frames professionally. With the bicycle academy you might get any number of people, lots of them really good frame builders in their own right, but you not know who until you get there. The guys from downlands are predominantly frame building teachers, not frame builders per se and I'm sure you will leave with a great frame from there, but I'd want someone miserable and jaded teaching me if I was doing one of the courses.

  • Geoff certainly qualifies on the miserable front. Not sure about jaded. He can be a bit too perky for that. But @Cycliste has just ordered a new touring frameset from him, and I'm about to book another framebuilding course in August, so he's obviously doing something right.

  • Dave's an excellent teacher - he used to teach metalwork. He's full of stories about all sorts so be prepared to enjoy him banging on about anything he fancies - Joe Waugh, his racing days, dogs, knives (he makes them too), shooting, military planes etc.

    If you take course, best advice is to really plan something you like and work him hard - think of some nice details (bi-lam headtube, fancy lugs, anything a bit special) and make him show you how to do it. The chap I was on the course with had done all of this and as a result got more of Dave's time. I wanted a clean looking light tourer and once Dave was satisfied I could fillet braze without causing to much chaos he rather left me to it. I enjoyed the week a lot, and really love the frame I got, but I remember thinking I maybe hadn't made the most of Dave's knowledge.

    Also, maybe get someone else to paint it. Dave did mine and it's fine, but there's a drip or two on the lacquer.

  • I share a workshop with Geoff and he really does care that you leave with a good frame. His courses are too cheap and he includes far too much if you ask me but that's a bonus if you want to do his course.

    The standard of frame you come away with is very good. If you do the course, take your own frame to the painters and compare it to some of the "pros" and you'll see what I mean.

    P.s if you ask to do a wishbone or something really awkward to stress him out, I'll buy you a pint in the pub across the road :D

  • You owe me a pint then. For my second frame that I did with Geoff last year I decided to make it fillet-brazed, with a wafer-thin 38mm Spririt downtube, a Max double-ovalized top tube, 44mm headtube, and wishbone seat stays. Oh, and internal cable routing for the rear brakes:

  • Yeah but if I'm not there to see him moaning about it, I'm not sure it counts :) .

    If you do another course, we'll have to think of a wind up for him. Paris frame ???

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  • Well, if I can do another course in August I'll actually be hoping to do two frames by turning up with all the tubes mitred and ready for brazing. One road frame using the new Llewellyn double over-sized lugs, and one weeny fillet-brazed cross frame for @Cycliste with a homemade integrated headtube and canti studs. Nothing that exotic though I'm afraid.

  • Let me know if you book up and I'll make sure I'm about. Be good to meet you mate.

  • well. i just finished the 7 day course. it was great, thoroughly recommend it to anyone on the fence. Took a bunch of pictures, so if anyone is interested in a bit of a write up then i'm happy to oblige.
    might have to do a build thread for the frame aswell

  • I thought your first tba frame is a standard buffalo bike frame that is donated to world bicycle relief

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Opinions on TBA style frame building course

Posted by Avatar for Biggles567 @Biggles567