Fabricating the headtubes

One of the first hurdles I encountered was that Genesis Super 32’s frame was made of aluminum, which meant I could not weld it. [The welder I use can only weld steel.]

This presented a challenge in that I could no longer use the Genesis Super 32’s head tubes, which I totally needed because of the unique size of the Super 32’s head tube — it was quite large; both in diameter and length. And nothing in my stockpile of bike frames would fit the Super 32’s bearing cups and fork.

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Next I thought I would simply cut a piece of steel pipe to the appropriate length. Unfortunately none of the pieces of steel pipe that I had in my materials bin had the appropriate inside diameter to seat the bearing cups. The picture below shows that I got close with a piece of 1.5″ EMT conduit, alas not close enough.

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So it was off to the hardware store; bearing cup and magnet in hand. …bearing cup to make sure the found item was the correct size; and magnet to make sure the found item was steel.

After a little digging around I found a coupling for 1.5″ EMT conduit that fit the bearing cups nicely. [See an EMT 1-1/2 in. Set Screw Coupling from Home Depot pictured below].

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Unfortunately, off the shelf, the coupling was too short for the fork’s length. [See the coupling matched against the Super 32’s head tube pictured below.]

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Not a problem. I would simply cut the coupling in half and then extend it appropriately with a piece of 1.5″ EMT conduit and weld the whole thing together.

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The coupling made this task easy in that it had a grove in the center offering the perfect cutting guide, as well as set screws to hold the conduit in place during welding.

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Pictured below is the homemade steering tube assembled (pre-weld) with bearing cups and bearings mounted onto a Genesis Super 32 fork.

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It was as though the little coupling was destined to become a head tube. Pictured below are two homemade head tubes.

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