Bicycle Frame Braze-Ons: A Comprehensive List

In 1996 I was designing myself a new touring frame. The following list includes every brazed-on accessory mentioned in repeated discussions on the touring mailing list and various rec.bicycles.* newsgroups. If there are any more suggestions, please send them my way and I'll add them to the list.

  • Cantilever bosses for canti brakes, preferably three-hole forged bosses. Even if you intend to use other brakes, sidepull or hub brakes, for example, canti bosses don't add much weight and allow you to use canti brakes later, if your regular brakes break or wear out. Similarly, even if you plan to use cantis, it's good to have your brake bridge and fork crown set up to accept caliper brakes just in case.

  • Bottle Bosses: seat tube, two or three sets on downtube. Maybe an extra set for holding some infrequently-used tools that mount to bottle bosses, like Park road wrenches or various cone wrenches.

  • Fender & Rack eyelets, preferably double eyelets front and rear. Available separately if your preferred dropouts don't have enough eyelets.

  • Brazed-on racks. The sturdiest way of putting racks on a bike, but not always a good thing if you want to take the bike apart for air travel.

  • Mid-fork low-rider bosses, also useful for Blackburn Front Mountain Rack if you're touring off-road and want a full-height rack. Make sure your bosses match the racks you plan to use.

  • Rear low-rider mounting -- offered by some companies to allow the use of low-rider mounts to hang panniers in back without a full rear rack.

  • Chain hanger. My personal favrite is Columbine's stainless Quickchainger.

  • Pump peg, since even if your pump is a frame-fit pump, not all of the pumps in the world are. Where? Back of the head tube, or do you have room behind the seat tube or on a seat stay?

  • Chainstay spoke carrier -- carries spare spokes on top of the right chain stay, and doubles as a chainstay protector. As an alternative, spokes can be stored inside of any tube that can be opened -- inside the seat post, or perhaps in the top tube of a frame built with S&S Bicycle Torque Couplings. Slightly inconvenient access is OK, since with luck and well built wheels you won't need spare spokes all that often.

  • Brake cable stops -- not internal cable routing. Preferably slotted stops for easy maintenance.

  • Shifter bosses. Even if you use STI or Bar-Cons, shifter bosses make a good place to hang adjustable cable stops, plus they're a good backup in case of shifter failure.

  • Shifter cable stops, also preferably slotted. Position carefully for best indexing.

  • Shifter cable guides -- above or below bottom bracket, if you aren't using one of those bolt-on nylon thingies. Some bottom brackets have them cast into the shell.

  • Fender bosses in stay bridges & fork crown: braze bottle bosses into the bottom of the seatstay bridge, back of the chainstay bridge, and the back of the fork crown for easier and more secure fender mounting -- no more rattling bridge clips.

  • Generator bracket. But which type? Bottom bracket, seat stay, or fork? An added complexity: if you don't have pannier clearance for a seatstay generator, some people report success mounting one on a chainstay, though this might cause crank interference. ESGE makes a small gadget for putting a generator on their front racks, too, but I've never seen one for sale.

  • Headlight bracket. Again, where & what type? There are so many styles of headlights today it might be a bad idea to limit yourself to just one style of mounting.

  • Headlight wiring guides to keep your headlight wires from rattling against the frame or flapping in the breeze. Again, depends on where you put your generator or batteries and where you mount your headlight.

  • Headtube steering-lock setscrew -- a new one on me, but it seems like an obvious idea: put a setscrew in the head tube to tighten against the steerer and stabilize the front end when parked.

  • Flickstand braze-on mount. (Are braze-on style Flickstands still available, though?)

  • Kickstand mounting plate. Admit it, you're touring, not racing, and a kickstand really makes sense, especially something like one of those beautiful double-leg ESGE stands. A mounting plate on the chainstays keeps the stand's clamp from damaging the stays. I made mine out of 1/8" stainless steel plate, stiffer than a standard stamped plate and immune to rust if the kickstand bolt mars the paint job.

  • Number plate tab, if you ever plan to race the bike.

  • Drum/disc brake force transfer arm mounting, if you want to use brakes other than rim brakes. Make sure you match the brand of brake you plan to use.

  • Bottle opener so you can always open that icy cold beer after pitching the tent.

This page written by Josh Putnam. Please feel free to email questions, comments, corrections, suggestions, etc.

Josh Putnam's Home Page | Josh's Bike Page. | Josh's Framebuilding Page. | Josh's Photo Page.

© Joshua Putnam