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  1. #1
    Senior Member Lspade's Avatar
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    Am I in over my head? ----- Univega bike build

    I need your opinions to make sure that I am not getting in over my head . I am looking at a Univega Gran Record frameset (specs at the end of the post, stem and handle bars included) to build my next roadbike as the cheapest way to get on a butted steel frame. I am very mechanically inclined but have never built a bike before. This will be my second road bike that I own. SO WHAT IS MY IDEA YOU ASK ?

    Purchase the frameset, buy a Tiagra groupset, find a wheelset <$200, and use my LBS for cables and housing. A rough breakdown of prices:

    Frameset: $200
    Stem: ^
    Handlebars: ^
    Seat Post: (already owned)
    Seat: (already owned)
    Tiagra Groupset: <$500
    Pedals: (already owned)
    Wheels: $200
    Tires/Tubes: (already owned)
    Cabels and House: <$100

    Total: <$1000 for a quality frame with new components

    My concerns are that the bike originally came with downtube shifters so I have no idea how I would route the shifter cables if at all possible? I have a whole shop full of tools but I assume I need a special tool for the BB, will this be expensive and are there any other tools specific to the bike world that I would need?

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    THANKS SO MUCH ! -Logan
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    Univega Gran Record Specs:
    Seat tube - 60cm ctc 62cm c-top
    top tube - 57 cm ctc
    head tube - 195
    seatpost - 26.6mm
    BB shell - English 68mm
    headset - 1" Tange
    fr. derailleur - clamp on 28.6mm
    brake mounts - recessed alan.
    rear hub spacing - 126mm
    fork - matching steel
    Frame was designed for 700c wheels
    stem - 105mm Univega alloy stem
    bar - 41cm Kusuki Winnpista

  2. #2
    Villainous huerro's Avatar
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    Sounds like a nice plan. You're not in over your head at all.

    You will need down tube cable stops to convert the shifter bosses. They will run you about $15 (and I think there is already plenty of wiggle room in your cable/housing budget for them).

    The internet tells me that you have a local bike co-op. It might be a good place to start if you need to use tools or to get advice/help with your build.
    http://www.bikecavecollective.blogspot.com/

    If you want to buy your own tools, just to build this bike and keep your bikes tuned, you can get a basic home mechanic kit for about $50-$100.
    http://www.ediscountbike.com/Super-B...-p7111862.html

    If you're going to be building/repairing lots of bikes it's worth it to spend $200 or more on a good tool kit from Park, but it's really not necessary. A work stand it also very helpful, but not absolutely necessary.

    Since this is your first build, you should definitely have your bike shop or a skilled mechanic check out your work before you go for a ride.

  3. #3
    Senior Member GrayJay's Avatar
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    $200 for a bare univega grand record seems awfully pricey, I doubt the frame was ever worth much more than than when brand new. It is a mediocre but decent and functional mid-level sports bike but not a high end racer and not particularly collectible. I think you can do much better for your budget if you keep looking. Buying a complete or nearly complete bike is probably going to be a lot cheaper than piecing one together using a bunch of individual new parts.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Lspade's Avatar
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    Wonderful! My current roadbike is actually a cross bike converted for road (specilized tricross) so I am excited to finally be on a frame with more of a race geometry. Plus I LOVE how steel rides!

    Im good friends with a guy at my LBS so maybe I can skip the coop and get help from him. I will for sure have them check out the bike before riding.

    I stated $200 because I wanted to estimate high and not low but it is good to hear that i should not expect the bids to get that high on the frame. I will be keeping my eyes peeled for other deals. Is buying wheels used a bad idea?

  5. #5
    Villainous huerro's Avatar
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    Buying wheels used is no worse imo than buying any other bike part. Buy from a reputable seller and you should be fine. Be prepared to spend a little on new bearings and getting them trued. You probably won't need to, but it's worth planning for.

    The biggest problem with wheels, especially on ebay, is the shipping. High shipping costs can negate a good deal pretty quickly.

  6. #6
    Senior Member shnibop's Avatar
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    $100 for brake/shifter cables/housings? you can pick up a set of Jagwire Racer cables on ebay all day long for <$30 shipped.

  7. #7
    Collector of Useless Info
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    Quote Originally Posted by shnibop View Post
    $100 for brake/shifter cables/housings? you can pick up a set of Jagwire Racer cables on ebay all day long for <$30 shipped.
    The Tiagra shifters should come with cables. I bought a set of Microshift shifters from Nashbar for $129 and they came with all 4 cables.

    A pair of cable stops from Niagara cycle will handily convert those downtube shifter posts to accept cable ends.

  8. #8
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lspade View Post
    Is buying wheels used a bad idea?
    In building dozens of bikes, I have yet to have bought new wheels. It will probably happen someday, but not so far.

    +1 ebay for wheelsets can be high due to shipping. I have found every wheelset except for one local, either on a donor bike, or as a separate item.

    As far as bidding on a frameset on ebay, its kind of a crapshoot. Sometimes stuff goes high, way high. Other times, it goes cheap. It only takes two idiots to bid something up.

    Just realize from a cost standpoint, you can beat your budget by a long ways by finding a donor bike and swapping out everything. For example, I picked up a donor Shimano 105 STI bike for $120. All parts including wheelset are going onto my 1992 Paramount Series V, and then the Paramount stuff is going on the donor bike to be resold (for more than $120). So the cost of the update? Zero.

    I much prefer to buy a complete bike, even if I plan to upgrade it. At the very least, the proceeds from selling the parts you remove will offset a portion of the upgrade cost. And I often find complete bikes at similar pricing to just framesets.

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