Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Ink
    Ink is offline
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    80s-vintage touring bike rehab....

    Sometimes, to get off my butt, I need a goal. Since I have really been sitting on my butt in a huge way (well, I sorta had an excuse -- some nasty neck problems and old age!) I decided I needed something fun to obsess about that might get me off my butt. The answer is to hoard my vacation time and take a 4-5 week-long tour in coastal lowlands somewhere between Copenhagen and Lisbon in 2007. I had better start riding again, eh?

    I have a touring bike that I am very fond of, a 1985-vintage Lotus Odyssey that I found fit well over the years. When I look at the price tag of something like a new Trek 520, I become even more fond of that not-very-expensive-back-then Lotus. So I am trying to consider what sane things to do to upgrade it.

    I had often considered 700c wheel conversion for better choice of tires (I'm looking at Conti Travel Contact). Taking the bike overseas almost seems to make that mandatory (unless I want to haul a spare rim). But that upgrade has a chain reaction of implications.

    The low-end canti brakes would not allow reposition of brake pads to smaller 700 rims. It looks like there might be enough space to fit some V brakes. Some of those I have seen (like "Pauls") look like they allow repositioning *way* down on the lever, but I wonder how close they could get to the pivot before losing all leverage. Looks like V brakes would require new brake levers, but those don't really exist in road/drop versions? Adapters?

    With the newer double-pivot caliper brakes, I wonder if it might be smart to have the cantilever bosses ground off, cover the wounds with some touch up paint, and add some calipers (would need to be deeper...)

    If new wheels, do I try to salvage existing hubs? They are mid-range something-or-other. I need to check width -- are they 126 versus 130? For loaded touring and given that I am a big guy I could get excited about a new *rear* at least with lots of expensive spokes.

    This bike is presently an 18-speed and I have to say I have not ever lusted for anything more. I converted it way back when to a half-step-plus-granny-gear setup that I like a lot -- kind of the Barcalounger let's-not-shift-*too*-much approach. All of the Shimano stuff now seems like 8-speed and up. Am I not right to wonder if all those cogs reduce actual wheel width (more dish?). Is there a popular sturdy alternative in rear hubs/cassettes that would maybe support 6-7 cogs?

    'Course, whatever I do there it seems like I could be looking at new derailleurs. I see Shimano still sells bar-end shifters. My bike has the originals and I still find them the best overall solution even though the friction action is pretty sloppy. I can't tell if the new ones are better -- do they ratchet or index?

    Ah, the one other possible upgrade: see if I can't get a slightly taller stem set back a tad more to try to cut my corroded cervical vertebrae some slack!

    Anyhow, if I keep dreaming up things I could change, I could save money by buying a new bike. But I like the old one...and it has this lavender metallic paint that I love. I hope you won't tell me I'm nuts. Please!

    I'm interested in any thoughts of what to do with the old mare...short of putting her out to pasture

  2. #2
    dbg
    dbg is offline
    Si Senior dbg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Naperville, Illinois
    My Bikes
    2004 Trek 5900 Superlight, 2001 Lemond BA, Dozen other muts
    Posts
    2,253
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    If it's already set up the way you like it, I wouldn't change a thing. Better to just overhaul everything including all bearings and cables and housings and maybe new bar tape, etc. If you start making radical changes you know that they won't turn out absolutely perfect the first time. And probably not the second time either. You might go a long way down the tinkering/upgrading road (money and time wise) and decide you've made it worse. If it's an old friend, make the current setup work perfectly rather than risk a wild goose chase that you might later regret.

  3. #3
    Ink
    Ink is offline
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by dbg
    If it's already set up the way you like it, I wouldn't change a thing. Better to just overhaul everything including all bearings and cables and housings and maybe new bar tape, etc. If you start making radical changes you know that they won't turn out absolutely perfect the first time. And probably not the second time either. You might go a long way down the tinkering/upgrading road (money and time wise) and decide you've made it worse. If it's an old friend, make the current setup work perfectly rather than risk a wild goose chase that you might later regret.
    I really like the overall setup, but I always thought there were a few things that could stand improvements. Number 1 is probably the brakes, but perhaps no one thinks their brakes are good enough! The cantilevers on this bike are probably the cheapest aspect of it.

    What starts the chain reaction, though, is wheels. Some of the nicer mixed use (rolling bead + some side knobs) tires like those Contis only come as 700s now. And if I succeed in taking this 5 week trip, what are the chances that I could turn up a replacement 27" wheel if needed on short notice in Belgium or elsewhere?

    Sure, part of me has tinkerer's bug, but there are other less-than-perfect things. Always liked the bar-Con shifters overall, but sloppy and always having to fiddle with the friction. And I'm going to have to do something to try to help with neck strain (oh, do I wish I had the dough for a recumbent!) and all I can think of is a small change to the stem...

    The one thing I would not sacrifice would be the half-step setup, but figure if I count teeth carefully I can match it through the range and either add 2 steps at the bottom or the top (if I wound up with a 7 or 8-speed cassette).

    Years ago I had a hard-cover bicycle book (grey+blue cover I think) that had a huge amount of detail on gearings and other stuff. Can't find it and I don't see anything that looks quite like that in print. I wonder what the name of it was?

    So maybe I'll try to set a budget limit of $500
    Last edited by Ink; 09-13-05 at 09:25 AM. Reason: incomplete though!

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    152
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Dia-Compe has recently started making some drop-bar levers that work with v-brakes. I'm sure a quick search here would turn up results. You can probably get some nice affordable tektro v-brakes to go with those and be pretty happy, assuming you can make em line up with your new 700c wheels.

    The new shimano barcons have both index and friction mode, you can find them for either 8 speed or 9 speeds indexing, obviously if you stick with friction you're good either way.

    For a 1" threaded steerer, the easiest-to-find taller stems (that fit a 26mm road hbar) are the Nitto Technomic and and Nitto Technomic Deluxe. You can find others on eBay, but length of quill is not often a consideration.

  5. #5
    Ink
    Ink is offline
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    41
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks for these tips. Very helpful. I haven't looked at components in a while so I feel like I'm a bit in the dark (ages).


    Quote Originally Posted by schang
    Dia-Compe has recently started making some drop-bar levers that work with v-brakes. I'm sure a quick search here would turn up results. You can probably get some nice affordable tektro v-brakes to go with those and be pretty happy, assuming you can make em line up with your new 700c wheels.
    I found those Dia-Compe levers on line. $60, but could be worse! And I found a variety of relevant pics here .


    Hard to tell if the Tektros will adjust low enough to work, but they are inexpensive enough for an experiment. Not sure if they would let me keep my front fender... Will look for some of those locally to see (tried to get specs, but Tektro's supposed Web site is Flash Hell).


    The new shimano barcons have both index and friction mode, you can find them for either 8 speed or 9 speeds indexing, obviously if you stick with friction you're good either way.
    I could be pleased if I could leave freewheel tools at home, so an 8-speed cassette and indexing is probably where I am headed. With a triple crank, that would leave me with 18 I might actually use

    For a 1" threaded steerer, the easiest-to-find taller stems (that fit a 26mm road hbar) are the Nitto Technomic and and Nitto Technomic Deluxe. You can find others on eBay, but length of quill is not often a consideration.
    Perfect. I think that is the first thing I'll do. The listing on Harris Cyle is like "If you've gotten old and decrepit..." That's me!

    Thanks again!

    I

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •