Journeyman Type 4

Anvil Bikes manufactures two models of frame fixtures:  the Type 3.1 and the Type 4.  The biggest difference between the two is the Type 4’s centerline location of the chainstay length arm versus the Type 3.1’s cantilevered chainstay tower and that the Type 4 positions the head tube height and the chainstay length via lead screws.  This simplifies some work-holding aspects of the rear triangle.   The advantage of the lead screws is that they give a finer level of control when establishing head tube height and when fitting the chainstays to the bottom bracket.   In all other aspects, the fixtures are the same with similar capacities and capabilities.  One other consideration is that the Type 3.1 is available with the head tube on the left or on the right configurations whereas the Type 4 is available only in the right handed configuration.

Anvil Bikeworks Type 4 Journeyman Bicycle Frame Fixture


The Anvil Type 4 Journeyman Frame Fixture provides the builder quick and easy setup via adjustable handles, witness marks, scales, and positioning screws. This allows easy adjustment of all critical dimensions—for all sizes and types of bicycles—without resorting to external measuring tools, formulas, or protractors. Every geometric or dimensional adjustment of the fixture is set individually, so changing one dimension or angle does not affect the others. The Anvil Type 4 Journeyman frame fixture can be adjusted from building a 70cm road frame to building a 12” MTB frame in less than a minute with repeatable accuracy.  Plus, Anvil Frame Fixtures are not limited by tube shape, size, or material; any style or type of bicycle can be built in the fixture.

Each Type 4 Journeyman begins life as a massive piece of aluminum tooling plate. This material is a continuously cast, aged, stress-relieved, and machined plate stock that is Blanchard ground to precise tolerances. The plate provides sound dimensional and thermal stability with minimal distortion due to changes in temperature during building operations. All positioning members are made of either 6061 T6 stock or tooling plate and are MILSPEC (MIL-A-8625 Type III Class 2) black hard coat anodized for long life and toughness. In addition to providing an armor coating, the hard anodizing eases cleaning and maintains a professional appearance.  All contact points with the bicycle frame, including the bottom bracket tower and the cones, are made of 17-4 stainless steel. The dummy axles and the fixture guides are 303 stainless steel. This choice of materials ensures a robust and rigid fixture. Every part is specifically designed and manufactured—from raw stock to its final form—in-house, from our shop in Golden, Colorado. We use no extrusions like 80/20 or their clones.

Range of Adjustment

In the fixture’s standard configuration, the following specs apply:

  • Witnessed adjustment for head tube is 60 to 80-degrees in 1/8-degree increments (actual range of adjustment is much greater).
  • Head tube height (distance the bottom center of the head tube is above the bottom bracket center) is adjustable from 220 to 568mm. This means the fixture can accommodate fork lengths from a child’s bike to the longest dual-crown DH forks.
  • Witnessed seat tube angle range is 60 to 80-degrees in 1/2-degree increments (actual range of adjustment is much greater) and includes a shelf for vernier protractor readings if more accurate settings are desired.
  • It will accommodate seat tubes from 200 to 700mm. As an option, we offer longer ranges appropriate to integrated seat post lengths. (ISP link)
  • Top tube length depends on seat tube angle and head tube angle, but from the center of bottom bracket to bottom center of the head tube, the horizontal top tube range is 296 to 639mm. (Effective top tube lengths of 700mm can be fitted.)
  • Bottom bracket drop is +110 to -80mm* for the Type 3.1
  • Effective chainstay length (distance the center of rear axle is behind the center of the bottom bracket) is 0* to 506mm.
  • Bottom bracket tower is infinitely adjustable to accommodate 64 to 132mm width English shells without adapters. Adapters are available for all other bottom bracket sizes.
  • To meet the demands of welding today’s high performance frame materials the Anvil Frame Fixture comes fully equipped and plumbed for back purge, including a built-in control valve to assist the builder with the economical use of gases.
Specification Adjustment Range
Min Max
Head Tube Angle (degrees) 60˚ 80˚
Head Tube Height (mm) 220 568
Head Tube Length (mm) 55 340
Seat Tube Angle (degrees) 60˚ 80˚
Seat Tube Length (mm) 200 700
Top Tube Length (mm) 296 639
Bottom Bracket Drop (mm) -80* +110
Effective Chainstay Length (mm) 0* 506
Bottom Bracket Shell Width (mm) 64 132

The Anvil Type 4 Journeyman Frame Fixture places the frame centerline at a 9” standoff dimension from the main base plate so both sides of the frame are fully visible and accessible for checking miter fit and for tacking and welding/brazing operations. There provides plenty of room for easy tacking or joining of the frame in the fixture, for linkages and assemblies on dual suspension frames, or molds for carbon fiber (or organic material, e.g. bamboo or wood) construction.  The locating cones, head tube puck, and adjustable bottom bracket tower make the seat tube and head tube self-centering, and bottom bracket shell can be centered to its actual width to ensure the frames critical dimensions maintain the correct geometric relationships.  In addition, the fixture settings do not have to be changed to remove the frame from the fixture.  To remove the frame, the upper head tube tower and the seat tube tower are moved away from the frame, the dummy axle clamp is loosened and slid to the rear, the BB tower draw bolt is loosened and the frame is rotated backwards off the lower head tube puck and withdrawn from the fixture.  The fixture retains its settings the whole time allowing the frame to be returned to it for additional operations or work started on the next frame.

The rear dropouts are located by means of removable dummy axles to keep the dropouts in phase with each other and automatically center the dropouts on the bottom bracket shell when used in the frame fixture. Two dummy axles are included with the fixture.  These removable dummy axles interchange with other Anvil fixtures and can stay on the frame until completion to keep the dropouts spaced and aligned whether you are working in the fixture or not. The fixture’s micro-adjustable bottom bracket tower allows the builder to use the full range of bottom bracket shell widths from 64 to 132mm. Adapters are available for alternative shells such as PF30, BB30 BB86/92, EBB, etc.

The head tube height and effective chainstay length are controlled and located via lead screws and linear rails.  This allows a greater level of control and precision in locating these critical positions.

The head tube is located via an upper cone and a lower puck holder. The lower puck holder maintains the bottom center of the head tube in a constant relation with the fixture’s head tube height scale – no matter what size head tube is being used. The fixture comes with head tube pucks sized for standard 1” and 1.125” steerer tubes. Optional pucks are also available, including 44mm inset, 45mm Italian Standard, 49mm, 56mm, etc.

The Anvil Frame Fixture also includes our exclusive bench-mount stand with a pivot arm that allows balanced rotation about two axes.  Other brand of frame jigs force a position on the builder but Anvil frame fixtures allow the builder to dictate the frame and fixture position best suited to perform their work.  The fixture is balanced on the pivots and can be easily rotated or adjusted with one hand. The trunnion pivot is mounted on the stand and allows 360-degree rotation about the X-axis. The table pivot or knuckle allows the fixture to be laid back (drafting table style) or tilted forward; no other frame fixture provides the builder with this range of adjustment or ease of use.

Each Anvil Bikeworks Type 4 Journeyman Frame Fixture, as described, includes the following in its base price:

  • Type 4 Journeyman Frame Fixture.

  • Two (2) dummy axles in sizes as requested.

  • Two (2) head tube pucks in 1” and 1.125” sizes.

  • XY-axis table pivot (CG corrected) with bench-mount stand.

  • Plumbed and valved for back-purge gasses.

Other Frame Fixture options available include: stay positioners; tube holders; and EBB or BMX bottom bracket shell adapters. Custom configurations or designs are also possible. Please call 303-471-7533 to discuss.

 – Pictures below may include options not included in base price.

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