Bicycle Mechanics - Fuji Single Speed Conversion: Anyone Done This?
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02-10-07, 09:56 PM
I'm thinking of converting my newly purchased 1984 Fuji Touring Series III into a single speed - it's going to be my commuter bike and I thought it would simplify things if I made it a single speed.
Has anyone done this with a Fuji? Would the process be about the same for most any bike? And where should I begin?
02-10-07, 10:14 PM
The fact that it's a Fuji has virtually nothing to do with this.
However, a touring bike from 1984 is very likely to have horizontal rear dropouts (where the rear wheel fits) which makes things much easier to run a singlespeed.
The rear wheel probably takes a freewheel. If so, you can get a singlespeed freewheel and re-space and re-dish the wheel.
Or, you could keep the freewheel currently on the bike and just stick the chain on the gear that you want to use. (This is heavier, but otherwise shouldn't be a problem.)
If you want to simplify things more, you can run a single chainring on your crank.
The main goal with a singlespeed drivetrain is that the sprocket on the rear wheel lines up with the front chainring. That's why I talked about re-spacing the rear wheel if you get a singlespeed freewheel. You may also want to run a single chainring on your crank, and get a new bottom bracket (with shorter spindle) so that the chainring sits closer to the bike's frame.
Sheldon Brown has an excellent and informative page about singlespeed conversions:
02-11-07, 05:50 AM
That should be a real fun project. Last summer I built a fixed gear out of a Raleigh Technium mountain bike from about that era.
Start with the gearing. Figure out what gears you need for where you are planning to ride. It's cheaper if you can use one of the front chainrings that you already have. It's simpler if you can use a 16,17 or 18 rear cog since those are easiest to find in single speed freewheels.
Hows the rear wheel going to work? The quick, dirty way is to just stick on the single speed freewheel (you'll need a BMX freewheel tool). If it was my bike I'd jack around with the spacers to center the hub shell between the dropouts and redish the rear wheel.
Now take a look at your crankset. You'll want to get some shorter chainring bolts so you can eliminate the unneeded chainring. When I built my fixie the chainline worked perfectly just by using the inner position for my chainring. If your bike has a triple crankset, you'll probably need to get a shorter bottom bracket to move the chainline in closer to the frame. Chainline is a biggie. The front chainring and rear cog have to pretty much be in a perfect line.
Size your chain with your rear wheel as close to the front of the dropout as possible. Since you can only adjust chain lengths in 1" increments it'll probably have to be moved back a bit. Make sure that you have some scope to move the wheel farther back as the chain wears and gets longer.
Good-to-go. Have fun.
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