June 6

June 6, 2005

A carbon fiber spare tire and tools holder for the triathon bike

Excuse the dirty bike - I just finished a 100 km time trial in the rain. It isn't completely finished yet - I still need to fill some rough edges with epoxy/micro and sand, but you'll get the general idea.

The spare tire holder holds one rolled up tubular tire and two Co2 air cartridges. Typically, these items get taped to the under side of my seat, but I am certain that this approach is far more aerodynamic. Plus it looks mean.

Here is how it was made:

1. I carved out a block of 3" thick Styrofoam to fit on the seat tube under neath the seat.

A wire brush makes the best rough shaper followed with some sandpaper and then a final finish sanding using another block of Styrofoam.

2. This is how the tire holder will fit below the seat. It will attach the seat tube with a Velcro strap. The foam is notched to fit snugly over the aero tube.
3. I wrapped one layer of carbon fiber cloth over both sides using a light coat of spray contact cement to hold it in place.
4. Ready for a coat of epoxy resin
5. The whole thing was wrapped with a layer of peel-ply film, then a breather cloth to soak up excess resin.
6. The whole package was inserted into a plastic air-tight pouch and subjected to a vacuum of 25" of mercury for 8 hours.
7. I use my Dremel cutting wheel to slice the whole thing in half - then carved out the Styrofoam
8. One layer of carbon is way too thin, so I decided to reinforce it with a layer of fiberglass on the inside. Once these two glass fabric layers were secured in place with a light coat of spray adhesive, I wetted them out with epoxy resin and let cure for 8 hours.
9. The two side were re-assembled with a strip of carbon fiber and epoxy
10. I used my laser lever to mark a horizontal line across the top of the pouch to cut a lid.
11. The top fits tightly over 4 Sintra tabs that were bonded to the side walls. The skull and cross bones is painted on with epoxy resin.
12. This photo shows how the spare tubular fits into the pouch.
13. I decided that it was pretty smooth, so I might as well finish it properly. I coated the edges and rough spots with a micro/epoxy slurry, then sanded it down and painted it black.
14. It is fastened onto the Elite with two Velcro straps.


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