Greetings from the far side. I have been gradually learning about bicycle maintenance for the past couple of years by asking questions here, reading Sheldon Brown's web pages and hanging out in a couple of local shops.
I have recently felt the urge to learn more after a very successful re-gearing of my road bike. What I am thinking now is that solely for the purpose of learning more, I would like to take at least one of two older bikes I have and upgrade to newer components. I will likely be using some take-offs from things I have done to my roadie and some that friends have graciously offered up.
Some of the questions I anticipate having are:
what new parts/components can be installed on a bike like my 1971 Raleigh Grand Prix? or a mid 70s Schwinn Varsity?
can the old 10-speeds be converted to more gears? if so, how far can one take that? 18? 21? more?
can newer crank sets be installed on 70s era bikes? what's the limit; double ring or triple?
I'm sure there will be many more questions as I go, but those will get me started. Keep in mind I'm only doing this as an exercise in learning how to work on bikes; not to build some superbike. That siad, I will be using what-ever parts I can get free or dirt cheap. If something doesn't work I'll back out and try something else.