>"I would really like to hear from builders
>who are making a reasonable living simply
>by building frames..."

what word do want to hear?
in a nutshell, stick to your guns. stay true to
your convictions. don't try to be all things to
all people. specialize in some aspect of the sport
or activity. don't back down, or retreat. if it all
doesn't work, wait a while; don't simply make something
else in the "meantime". don't look at your checkbook
as a yardstick. if it's really not meant to be, do
something else - and then build for the fun of it,
the same reason some still do.
and by all means, ride a bicycle.