Bicycle Mechanics - Have a 'new' fix-me-up: advice and suggestions wanted
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08-19-11, 01:42 PM
Hi everyone, new to the forums and need some thoughts and help on my 'new' bike. Long story short, I moved to a new city that my old friend left last year, leaving his bike behind. I've inherited it, but it was unfortunately left outside all through the winter. It's a fixed gear road bike with lots of rust, a really dirty chain, a bent back fender, and a seat desperately needing a replacement. I've got a couple pics, notably of the rust on the rims (due to lighting couldn't get a good body shot), and the bent back fender.
I'm going to try out the aluminum foil/water trick on the rust, but I'm not sure how effective it'll be on this frame, or if the rust is too much. As well, not sure how to go about fixing the back fender. Your input and advice is much appreciated, and if it all comes out good, I'll make sure to post pics of that, too. Thanks!
08-19-11, 02:14 PM
You have not coaster brakes on that , lacing up the hub in an aluminum rim will stop better,
and weigh less , but better braking will save your life.
08-19-11, 03:00 PM
Right, I have rim brakes, not coaster brakes. I'm a little confused by what you meant with your post.
Anyone have tips on fixing the fender?
08-19-11, 07:19 PM
Take off the rear wheel, remove the fender and then just tweak it until it's straight again. Also a lot of how straight the fender sits is related to adjusting the fender stays and mounting hangers. If those are wonky the fender won't sit at all straight. And in fact I suspect that the fender is just flexed out of shape. Some adjusting of the hanger at the rear brake bolt and some playing with the wire stays and it would likely sit straight again.
The rust pits on the badly rusted rim is going to tear away your pads very quickly. This means that the rims are definetly toast. I'd suggest looking for a cheap set of new or used wheels of the correct size that have aluminium rims. Otherwise lacing new rims onto the old hub will cost as much as a better used bike would cost unless you can do the lacing and truing yourself. Something I highly doubt given your request for information about the fender.
08-20-11, 01:11 AM
Well i recently renovated a similar bike but with a 3 speed english hub. I just kinda hammered out the dents of the fender (theyre very malleable) and just mess with that till its back in the right shape. As for the rust i just went to work with some steel wool and some wd 40 itll take the rust off the rims fairly well (my rims were rustier than your and i got nearly all of it off) and you can do the same thing for the body just be careful it can also remove paint. It takes alot of work to rub the rust off but it looks like a new bike afterwards! As for the chain id just get a new one you can get them cheap and the one you have is probably lengthened anyways. Also probably new cables and brake pads would be a safe thing to replace haha safety first
08-20-11, 06:03 AM
mberkes, I think what you have is actually a 3-speed English bike, maybe a Raleigh. It doesn't appear to be a fixed gear bike, but probably is a single speed at the moment, without its shift cable, clamps, shifter and indicator spindle. If you have access to a "bike kitchen" in your new city, you may be able to get these parts cheaply and have a more satisfactory bike. Such places also have smart, helpful people who can give you some tips about the other problems.
My favorite way to clean rusty chromed steel is a Brillo or SOS soap pad, used with water. Magic.
08-20-11, 01:06 PM
Thanks for the tips everyone, some good stuff I can use from this. I tried to fiddle around with the wire stays and hangar, but everything's so damn rusted and stubborn, couldn't even adjust anything with the tools I have. Might have to grease up the bolts and crap and see if they'll move easier.
FlatTop, that's pretty interesting, I'll look into that about getting the components.
With all the extra things people are suggesting (like new rims, or extra components), would it just be cheaper to buy a used bike on Kijiji or Craigslist, or would fixing this up ultimately be better/cheaper?
08-20-11, 10:25 PM
It depends on what you want to use the bike for. For shorter trips for running errands and getting around town it will be a nice bike once it is fixed up... but if you want a bike for long rides that is sporty and fast by modern standards, this is not it.
which might be hard if there are any major problems, because many of the old english 3 speeds used different design and construction standards so finding parts can be a pain. You call it a 'fixed gear'... do you mean the pedals turn whenever the wheel turns and you cannot coast? Most of that style of bikes didn't work like that so you might have a problem with the internals of a three speed hub, or a less common three speed fixed gear hub.
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