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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Upgrade Advice Requested

    Now, I am commuting with a Trek 7300 hybrid that is less than a year old. Following surgery on my back, the seat suspension had some serious appeal. However, I have a late 70s Raleigh Record that is near and dear to my heart. It's the bike I used to lose 35 pounds in six weeks on. First, I have substantial tonnage to lose, and would like to catch fire in a bottle again with the Raleigh. Second, those 80 pound tires on the Trek do not warm the cockles of my heart.

    What would you do to the Raleigh to upgrade it? I am not rich and I would like to do most of my own work, so please recommend a good source(s) for parts.

    Thank you in advance for your sage advice.

    deaconbam

    -Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the goal.

  2. #2
    cab horn
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    If you aren't running pure slicks, I would swap those out. Parts wise, i don't think it can get any better than www.probikekit.com at the moment. Free shipping to the u.s (best prices on the net as well) and very fast turnaround time. Besides that there isn't much I can think of that you can do to your hybrid.

    What exactly is your goal anyways? Go faster? Or just lose weight? You can lose weight on a 100lb junker if that's the case. But, please elaborate.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Specialized Sirrus Sport, Specialized Stumpjumper Comp, Brompton, Trek 1500
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    Quote Originally Posted by deaconbam
    Now, I am commuting with a Trek 7300 hybrid that is less than a year old. Following surgery on my back, the seat suspension had some serious appeal. However, I have a late 70s Raleigh Record that is near and dear to my heart. It's the bike I used to lose 35 pounds in six weeks on. First, I have substantial tonnage to lose, and would like to catch fire in a bottle again with the Raleigh. Second, those 80 pound tires on the Trek do not warm the cockles of my heart.

    What would you do to the Raleigh to upgrade it? I am not rich and I would like to do most of my own work, so please recommend a good source(s) for parts.

    Thank you in advance for your sage advice.

    deaconbam

    -Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the goal.
    Tyres, wheels, performance bike or nashbar probably the best for you as you are in Us. Try ebay also

  4. #4
    Senior Member masi61's Avatar
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    One idea would be to scrap the suspension post on your hybrid and get a good rigid one (make sure you have a seriously good saddle and some quality new bib shorts too). The suspension seatpost is going to be a block to your improvement. Start logging miles now to reduce the poundage , the take a look at your Raleigh and start prepping it to make it roadworthy as well. Back to your hybrid, try to continually perfect your position and give yourself a fighting chance at ongoing improvement through adjusting or upgrading anything that blocks it. For example, if your hybrid has flat bars and a short top tube, install bar ends on the bars or better yet put drop bars on the thing. If your stem puts you in too upright of a position, transition to one that lets you use your upper body more to stretch out while developing your spin. By the way, you are using clipless pedals/cycling shoes right?
    As for the Raleigh, since your hybrid is now your experimental test steed, take your anecdotal, field-tested insights from it and re-commit to the old steed, but you'll need to bring your old notions of a 6 week flight into fitness in line with the realities of slower improvement, imprecision, and quite a few disappointments along the way....

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    To Opeerator

    It's kind of a balance thing. Yes, I want to lose weight and get my blood glucose count down and under control, but I don't want to labor unnecessarily. In other words, I would rather ride a longer distance at a faster rate to get to work in the same amount of time. Then, on weekends, I can supplement with some longer rides.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    It would be easy to spend too much money on the Raleigh. If it's in good condition just ride it.
    If it has 27" wheels you may be able to rebuild them with 700c rims and new spokes. If it has friction shifters and a 5 cog freewheel you may be able to upgrade to a 6 or 7 speed freewheel.
    It would be better to buy a new road bike than to spend much on it.

    Al

  7. #7
    cab horn
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    I think your best bet is tires, if you're running some wide 1.5" ones. If not, there's really not much to do for your bike. Maybe get clipless?

  8. #8
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    I'm not sure what you are trying to accomplish. Do you want to update the Raleigh or do you want to make the Trek ride more like the Raleigh?

    Either way it's way too easy to start down an expensive path. You can almost never change just one part on a bicycle. Everything works together so, when you change one component, something else needs to be either bought or modified to make it work.

    My advice is to think about what you don't like about the Trek. If it's the handlebar, seatpost or whatever, be as specific as possible. Then we can give you a better idea of the trade off costs of upgrading.

  9. #9
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    Al, you mentioned changing the wheel size from 27" to 700c. I'm no expert, but, have had my LBm make modifications to my new (well, nine-month old) C'dale Cyclocross, and am aware of areas where it differs from my old '73 Schwinn LeTour - one of which is the wheels.

    Is the wheel size change, in your opinion, an upgrade or just a mod to make the bike more like his Trek? Is there an advantage to the 700c size - I know 27" stuff is tough to get these days.

    My LBm really worked over my Schwinn until (I'm sure) it rode and handled like none other. But, I got tired of the almost functionless brakes, had one rear wheel fail (folded up like an egg omelet), and just wanted something fresh to ride. The Schwinn is still a good ride - and for some reason seems faster than any other of my bikes, but, I like the smoothness and modern feel of the Cyclocross - I even like the fresh paint and the five pounds of decals the mfr stuck onto it.

    But, the wheel size question still intrigues me.

    Caruso

  10. #10
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carusoswi
    Al, you mentioned changing the wheel size from 27" to 700c.
    27" wheels haven't been used on new bikes for quite a while - certainly for over a decade and maybe even two. Consequently, every year that goes by, tire and rim choices decline by a model or two. Mavic, for example, hasn't made 27" rims for around 10 years.

    That aside, I wouldn't fret excessively about wheel size. Larger diameter wheels roll over bumps more easily and smaller diameter wheels are more durable and aero. Within the 26" to 27" window that we're all used to you'll have to use some kind of instrumentation to detect the difference.

    Changing wheel size on a bicycle can sometimes be done pretty easily but there are trade offs. You may have brake reach issues or tire clearance issues. It will raise or lower your bottom bracket slightly and change your gearing and handling a bit. It may also look goofy.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
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    A friend has an early '70's Raleigh Super Course and almost nothing on the bike matches current standards. The bottom bracket and headset threading are proprietary so you can't get replacements without a fight, the frame geometry is peculiar to say the least, it uses 27" wheels and had 120 mm (5-speed) rear spacing which we cold set to 126 mm, 6/7-speed but I wouldn't want to go wider). The brake reach is well beyond "long reach". The upshot is that modernizing this thing would be an expensive exercise in frustration.

    Unless you are absolutely in love with your Raleigh I'd either ride it as is or buy a new (or recent model used) bike suitable for your needs.

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