Class Info

If you are interested in participating in this series of two courses, please take a moment and read the following information carefully. It describes both what we expect the courses to give you and what is expected from you.

Course Application

The course application can be found HERE.

You must bring your completed application to the first class meeting on Monday, January 7, 2013. This class meeting is mandatory. All admission decisions will be made after the first class meeting.


This course will span two quarters. ME204A, during Winter quarter, will take place on Monday evenings from 6-7:30pm. Timing of class sessions of ME204B in the Spring is TBD at this point. All sections require your attendance, and they will vary week-to-week from being classroom-based instruction, field trips, guest lectures, and hands-on machine shop time. If you have conflicts, please talk to us ASAP and we will try to resolve them. NOTE: official class time only makes up a small percentage of the total time you will spend designing/building your bike.


This course is open to all students of Stanford University, both undergraduate and graduate level. This course is treated as an advanced shop course, therefore basic shop experience is required, which includes the following:

• Completion of ME203 or Equivalent -- must be comfortable with manual milling and turning. This is mandatory with NO exceptions. You might have to prove your "equivalent" experience.

• Basic TIG Welding with steel and/or aluminum (at least have tried it)

• Competency in Oxy-Acetylene welding and associated safety precautions

• Familiar with hand tools such as hack saws and files

• Basic understanding and appreciation of the proper care of tools
This course will give you a very advanced understanding of TIG welding and/or brazing , as the welds you will be making on these frames will need to withstand the stresses of having your butt riding on them! Allow a minimum of ten hours of torch time before even thinking about welding your bike. Visit the PRL as soon as possible (RIGHT NOW) to start practicing! If you do not know how to weld yet, please see a TA and ask for a lesson. It’s their job, you know!

If, by the first day of class you have not at least picked up a TIG or brazing torch, you will not be allowed to enroll in this course. While this course is intended to teach you all of the aspects of Framebuilding, we need a proactive first step from you.


We expect you to carefully read everything we assign. There won't be much, but what there is is important.

In order to provide a more structured environment, We will provide several assignments throughout both quarters. This will be mostly hands-on work, consisting of either tooling fabrication or in-process checks of your bicycle frame. This will not only provide you with a better understanding of the frame-building process, but also help to ensure that nobody falls behind during the quarter. Additionally, several assignments will help to fortify our selection of manufacturing tools and fixtures, thus insuring that future generations will still be able to enjoy fresh tools. Again, this course is a work in progress, and the continued formal lab structure was the outcome of last year’s course feedback. Further input is always welcomed.

Grading and Units

This course is split into two quarters this year. ME204A in the Winter quarter is 1 unit, and ME204B in the Spring is offered at 3 units only, and no auditing is allowed. I know this may seem harsh, but trust me, this course will take up A LOT of time, and you will appreciate the course credit for it. Letter grading is the only option available, and your grade is based almost entirely on the quality of the bike you build. Not to worry, though, I'll do my best to make sure every bike built is a keeper.

Cost of Materials

This course can get quite expensive, depending on how crazy you wish to get with your creation. We have a plethora of sponsors this year, all offering wholesale or better pricing on their goods, but expect the minimum cost of a frame to be around $250, and a component gruppo will add another $400-$5000, depending on how deep your pockets are!

I hope that covers everything! If you still have questions, please email us at RyanAtPureIrishStout.com