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It’s not every day you receive an email inquiring if you would like a 3 Foot by 5 foot by 7 inch thick granite surface plate, however that’s just what happened to us the other day. Our friend Andrew is getting into framebuilding and found out that the Toyota plant near our shop needed to rid itself of some excess inventory and this 1400lbs slab of granite needed a new home. It was a bit too big for Andrew’s space but he thought we might be able to use it.    Not only will this surface plate allow us to accurately check the alignment of even the biggest road frame, it will also allow us to check alignment on tandem frames with the greatest of ease. To give you an idea of scale, pictured below are a 62cm road bike and an older Mariposa tandem. The surface plate has tapped holes which allow us to mount the bb post easily and Hugh is already planning out the dimensions of the stand he will have to build to hold the plate. We’re sending our old surface plate Andrew’s way; it should make for a nice addition to his growing collection of framebuilding tools. I’ve included a picture of a mountain bike he made himself.

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Contrasting the sheer size and weight of the surface plate is Star’s new road bike. Hugh crafted this frame out of Columbus Ultra-Foco tubing which makes for a nice light bike. Star opted to build it up with a mostly 105 build and some nice touches like matching pink Chris King headset and Octto Bar tape. This bike is equipped with long-reach brakes allowing Star to run larger tires or fenders if she desires.

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Mike’s road bike is another light bike built with True Temper S3 tubing. He chose to build it up with a SRAM Rival group and some really nice handbuilt wheels featuring Chris King Hubs and Mavic Open Pro rims.

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As it is getting towards the end of the year, we start to hear back from all the people that we made bikes for earlier in the spring and summer. We received this really nice note from Terry along with a picture.

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“This weekend I completed my goal of riding 1000km over the 2010 riding season.    This may not be impressive for some, but when I started riding in May this year, out of shape and a scant 6 months before my 40th birthday this seemed like a lofty goal.    But with a level of commitment, and having a really reliable, comfortable, indestructible bike, it became an easy goal to achieve.    “Woodworm” is the bike Hugh built for me (and named).    I consider it more of an heirloom than a piece of equipment.    When drive trains, and wheelsets wear out they will be replaced.    The frame will be repainted when too scratched, but the bike will be with me for a long long time.    Thanks Hugh and True North.”