I'm aware that the issue with 8 speed freewheels is they can cause axles to bend, however, if I'm building a bike for my girlfriend who only weighs 135lbs, is this still going to be a major issue?
My gf is new to cycling having only rented a bike once and ridden her moms comfort bike. She liked how upright she was on her moms comfort bike so I'm thinking flatbar is the way to go for her.
Kindly refrain from telling me not to go the freewheel route for the time being. I recently did a rebuild of an old nishiki to get my feet wet with wrenching again. I'll be taking the drop bars and stem from that bike and putting it on my current flatbar bike and taking the 8 speed shifters from my flat bar and putting it onto whatever frame I acquire for her. I am aware I can use my 8 speed shifters with my existing 7speed freewheel but i figure if i can get her an extra gear safely I might as well since freewheels are so much cheaper than casettes.