Building drive side out vs non-drive side out

Built a couple frames in a homemade fixture drive side out. I wanted to invest in a higher quality fixture and was wondering the pros and cons of building with one side out vs the other.

My brain tells me drive side out is the logical way to do it but then I see the Sputnik jug is Non-drive side out and it makes me think there must be a good reason for that.

I think the main reason for it is for the rear brake but I can be wrong.
My jig is drive side out.

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My fixture can go both directions. I always make my full size drawings with the head tube to the left so they match my fixture NDS out. DS out is like writing with my left hand for some reason

I wish they were all DS out. It’s nice to be able to confirm clearances with everything tight in the jig.
Hahn Rossman

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My jig is NDS out because I didn’t think about that when I was making it hahaha. I would prefer it the other way around


Personally, I’d instantly rule out a jig if it was only available drive-side in. Despite the “advantages” (which are debatable) it would drive me absolutely nuts to stare at a frame (and miter its tubes) from the non-drive side during a build.

My only other instant deal breaker would be a jig whose main extrusion/plate wasn’t, by default, horizontal to the ground. To me, that would be a bigger deal than DS/NDS out. I can’t imagine working on a frame and not being able to stand back and study things with a known horizontal reference. I know a lot of pro builders just need a jig to translate their drawing dimensions to a physical welding fixture, but… yuck. That’s not how my brain works. Makes me cringe just thinking about it!

(The advantages of NDS-out are that it puts some critical clearance points–crank, chainring, etc.–closer to the datum extrusion/plate of the jig so things like chainring checkers are easier to make. I’d imagine it’s also a bit easier for a right-handed person to tack in a NDS-out jig–especially the rear end bits. And then I suppose funky rear-end mockup–like a seat stay that has to clear a caliper–would be a bit easier NDS-out. Maybe. Beyond that… meh.)

Hope that helps,


I’ll confirm what’s been said here by a few people: my jig (PVD Skynet) is NDS out and, while it theoretically improves drivetrain alignment, it makes it a lot trickier to see what’s going on with chainring clearance. I’ll get the next couple of builds done on it and then decide if it’s enough of a problem for me to change it.

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