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Old 06-29-09, 06:23 PM   #1
ZoeS
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Looking for some encouragement =)

I've always wanted a red road bike with cruiser type handlebars, and that actually works and is nice to ride.

I found an old Sekine bike and checked it out. It looks like it has potential, but it is rough shape.



The gear cables and break cables probably all need to be replaced, wheels need to be trued, the tubes might need to be replaced, I want to change the handlebars, I've love to add fenders and a rack, and it needs a thorough scrubbing and polishing. I'm feeling a littler overwhelmed because I don't know much about bikes and I'm starting to think I should just have waited until I found the perfect bike that was already magically perfect.

So, I guess I'm just looking for encouragement, because I really want to do this. Unless, of course, you think I can't. In which case please tell me now before I invest any more into this
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Old 06-29-09, 06:35 PM   #2
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Well to start it's not a very valuable bike, but it's nice. With that being said it looks like a PERFECT time to get your hands dirty. There's a lot you can do without bike specific tools, but somethings you'll either need a friend with said tools or a few bucks in the budget for a LBS to do it. It looks like you're wanting a "townie" style bike, which are cool in my book

But before you turn a wrench, make sure the bike fits you. Speaking for personal experience, it sucks when you spend lots of time and money on a bike just to find out it's too small/big.

Keep in mind that you'll need a decent budget to embark on this adventure. You'll also need time, a good work area, and patience.

The parktool website is your friend. bicycletutor.com is another. And of course the mechanics forum here at bikeforums.

Go for it!
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Old 06-29-09, 06:43 PM   #3
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Just keep your expenses low, as the bike is low end, so you will not get your money back out of it. I buy most of my consumables (loose bearings, tires and cables for example) from Niagara Cycle, and I buy tubes from Pricepoint. I can usually turn a bike around for about $25 in parts, plus my time of course....
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Old 06-29-09, 07:02 PM   #4
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Thanks! I can see I have a lot of work ahead of me... maybe even more than I expected. But I do like a good project, and I hope that in the end I can be proud of what I've done. I'll be far more proud if I accomplish than if I go out and buy a shiny new bike. Might do some learning along the way as I barely know how to put air in my tires.

I hope you all don't get sick of me by the time I'm done =)
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Old 06-29-09, 07:05 PM   #5
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How much can you get it for?

The biggest immediate concern (beyond frame damage, i.e. dents, etc.) is if the wheels are steel or alloy. You'll want alloy rims. If it's hard to tell if the rims are steel. See if a magnet will stick to the rim. If they do, then they're steel.

If it's a good deal it's great way to get in to learning about bikes. Pretty soon...you'll be hooked.


MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA!
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Old 06-29-09, 07:50 PM   #6
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Look at northroad bars as well as pullbacks (cruiser bars). Make sure your current bar is 25.4mm where it clamps to the stem. If the rear wheel is that close to the seat tube you may find the bike tippy with cruiser-style pullbacks. It will want to pull wheelies if there is a grade or if you pedal hard.

You may need cables too, because the cable ends might not be compatible with any levers for a straight bar which you buy.

Last edited by garage sale GT; 06-29-09 at 07:56 PM.
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Old 06-29-09, 07:54 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by ZoeS View Post
The gear cables and break cables probably all need to be replaced, wheels need to be trued, the tubes might need to be replaced, I want to change the handlebars, I've love to add fenders and a rack, and it needs a thorough scrubbing and polishing.
thats all? no big deal.

Here's a cool place to find bike stuff...and some handlebars http://velo-orange.com/touristbar.html they've got fenders and racks and other cool stuff...some of its kind of expensive, so check out ebay too. even some of that is kind of expensive too I'm always amazed at how much racks sell for in general.

New brake & Shifter cables will run you 20 bux or less. You can get them from your local bike shop. Same with tubes, they're cheap also.
How bad are the wheels out of true? your LBS usually will give it a go for you, but don't spend much money on those wheels if they are real messed up, you can get cheap new ones from Niagara Cycle like wrk101 said.

You can start by cleaning the bike and the various components. Use oil or preferably silicon lubricant, not WD-40. Use WD-40 to clean parts, then lube them with actual lubricant. Don't be afraid to take parts off your bike to clean em, but you might want to take a couple of pictures before you get started so you have something to reference later...just in case.
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Old 06-29-09, 07:56 PM   #8
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steel northroad bars can be had new for around $10. then you can pick up some forte cross levers for your brakes ($15) and probably reuse your tape if you want. the cables will probably be long enough.

the whole job around $30.

Last edited by illwafer; 06-29-09 at 08:09 PM.
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Old 06-30-09, 07:45 AM   #9
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...you can pick up some forte cross levers for your brakes ($15)...the cables will probably be long enough.
The cable ends may not be compatible with the levers.

On another note, some old English sport bikes had upside down northroads. It's a nice look and makes you more aero at the expense of a more bent-over riding position.
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Old 06-30-09, 07:58 AM   #10
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To be honest thats the only reason I like the threadless headset on my modern commuter....I can pull off the face plate on the stem and flip my north roads bars in under a minute depending on how I feel like riding that day.
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Old 06-30-09, 08:04 AM   #11
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A junky old ladies 3-speed may give you the handle bars and brake levers you want for cheap. Post on your local freecycle www.freecycle.org and craigslist. Don't know where you're from, but around here a junk parts bike can be had for under $15(at thrift stores) and often for free if you ask around.
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Old 06-30-09, 08:34 AM   #12
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Velo Orange sells a nice $20 aluminum Northroad, just don't expect it to be as stiff as a Nitto.
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Old 06-30-09, 08:59 AM   #13
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You can do it - it's an easy conversion.
Figure out exactly what you want to do first, then buy your parts.

I say put SKS fenders on it - I love the way they look, and I am sad when the rain stops and I take them off.
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Old 06-30-09, 11:23 AM   #14
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I say put SKS fenders on it - I love the way they look, and I am sad when the rain stops and I take them off.
Save yourself the heartache... leave them on!
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Old 06-30-09, 11:24 AM   #15
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+1, mine stay on all year 'round. Seems like ya never know when its gonna rain around here anymore.
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