I am buying a second hand frame (Dawes 201 hybrid) build up (first time doing that, so exciting).
I'm paying cash on collection, so can back out if anything looks wrong. What should I look for on the frame to make sure it's up to scratch?.
Best in sunlight. Bring towel so you can wipe it down. Inspect all tubes and welds. Any crack is bad. Some times a surface crack on a weld is OK. Press and pull on the dropouts. Check the bearing surfaces. Take a seat post with you to be sure it will insert. Ask questions about the history.
If the bike had a serious crash, the frame will have a deformation where the down tube joins the head tube. Since this is usually hidden from view, inspect this spot.
Most other problems, like a worn-out bottom bracket or a cassette that needs replacing, can be fixed - a damaged frame can't. Of course, you still want to notice these problems to factor them into the price.