from a thread about how it all started...
>Richard, when did you pick up the skills to meet the bigger challenges?
>It seems like those are the things you learned when you were out on
>your own. I have no idea what you were exposed to at Witcomb in the
>way of the bigger challenges ie how they did their sizes/geometries,
>what you learned about different combinations of materials, but again,
>it seems like the big discoveries were happening out on your own.
>Witcomb may have gotten you ready for those things, but I'm just
>wondering if the stuff that eventually became Rote was the stuff you
>got from being in the industry in the Witcomb days and the bigger stuff
>you tackled was the stuff while you were flying solo.

ps: as a data point, i was at witcomb for 9+ months. i did anything that
was asked of me in return for being able to be around it all and absorb
the atmosphere. i finally held a torch in my hand in the last month. all
i learned to braze there was dropouts, top eyes, and brake bridges.
when peter and i were pressed into service to make frames at witcomb
usa, neither of us remembered much of what we did in london, but we
had a VERY RICH boss who wanted to manufacture in the worst possible
way. he threw money at us like there was no tomorrow. what we did there
was the most rudimentary framebuilding possible.

the ancecdotal info i posted and you referenced here begins after i left
to start my shop in 75/76. at that time, i was building 3-4 frames a week
with no problem, still racing every weekend, and almost NEVER left my
shop. i reckon i made about 500-600 frames before i realized that i
really didn't have a clue. i spent most of the 80s trying to get a clue.

as noted yesterday, i didn't feel comfortable in my skin until the 90s.
note: during ALL of this time, the types of frames you are talking about
were ubiquitous. it was easy to go to a store, a race, or a trade show
and do "industrial espionage".

ask yourself, do you want to spend this amount of time in an era in
which there is less to see? are you prepared for such a learning
curve. btw - how many frames have you made to date? just curious.
i enjoy the dialogue too.