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Old 05-10-11, 01:20 PM   #1
formicaman
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27 wheel... can i run 26?

Just picked up a Raleigh Sprite for the fiance. Bright yellow step-through frame. She's gonna love it. What she's not gonna love is the stem-mounted shift levers or friction shifting or actually shifting at all - 10 speeds is just more than she can handle. I have a spare 26x1-3/8 wheelset with a SA 3-spd. Apart from brake reach, any reason not to use them? And, if I need new brakes, would I be better off just building as new 27" wheel around the old hub?

PS Sorry for hogging the board with all my threads. I need a lot of help, only some of it bike related.
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Old 05-10-11, 01:30 PM   #2
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apart from brake reach it may change the handling a bit, but she probably won't notice if she's not into bikes as much as us nerds.

You're gonna need some loooooong reach calipers.
My Schwinn Varsity is a 27" to 26" conversion. Here's a look for you at about the amount of brake reach you can expect to need

I got around the issue with Hub Brakes

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Old 05-10-11, 01:47 PM   #3
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Hmm, methinks building a new wheel around the hub I have might be in order.
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Old 05-10-11, 03:09 PM   #4
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You'd need an additional 20mm of brake reach: (630-590)/2

That's a lot!

Neal
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Old 05-10-11, 03:28 PM   #5
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You'd need an additional 20mm of brake reach: (630-590)/2

That's a lot!

Neal
the braking power will be significantly reduced if you have super long calipers

i say build a 27" wheel around the old hub

make sure the hub fits in the drop outs though 1st
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Old 05-10-11, 03:37 PM   #6
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How important are looks? You could just run the 26" in the rear and keep the 27" in the front. Braking isn't as important in the rear anyway, and if she only rides leisurely on sunny days then it's no biggie. Heck, even the tandem that my girlfriend and I ride leisurely on sunny days doesn't have a rear brake, and it's never been the slightest issue(tandem originally had a coaster brake in rear, but the wheel-set was junk and the replacement isn't coaster brake).
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Old 05-10-11, 04:08 PM   #7
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How important are looks?
it's a bike for a girl...
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Old 05-10-11, 05:31 PM   #8
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Why not drop the FD and run a single chainring. Out back, swap an indexed 6 speed freewheel, and add an indexing thumb shifter.
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Old 05-10-11, 05:36 PM   #9
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You'd need an additional 20mm of brake reach: (630-590)/2

That's a lot!

Neal
Actually, going from 630 to 590 is not such a big deal. I did that on my Fothergill; the old GB brake calipers have slots a full 2 cm long, and it worked. But not all 26" wheels are 590 mm; most are in fact 559 mm. Going from 630 mm to 559 is a very big deal. I've done that, too; with drum brakes. And shorter crank arms.
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Old 05-10-11, 06:12 PM   #10
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Now that I think of it, my St. Etienne is a 630 to 584/650B conversion. I'm running a Weinmann 750 brake on the front and some odd Shimano sidepull on the rear (I need to swap that out for a matching Weinmann). It must have had fairly short reach brakes originally and a fairly high bottom bracket.

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Old 05-10-11, 06:38 PM   #11
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I say go for it. What are you going to do up front? Keep the same wheel or go to 590 up there too?

The advantage of building a new wheel around that hub is that you can go alloy. Rims are cheap, spokes aren't too bad either if you have a good source (thanks rhm) and yshe'll have better stopping power -although it is the rear. You might want to put a whole new wheelset front and back. You've opened a can of worms
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Old 05-10-11, 06:41 PM   #12
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trade your spare rear wheel and your current wheelset for something that works a little easier. you could run a 26" with a 3 speed + coaster brake to solve the brake issue.
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Old 05-10-11, 08:13 PM   #13
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If the 27" fork is not already built for long reach brakes, the Tektro 600A side pull brakes will reach to a 590 rim, but not a 559.
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Old 05-10-11, 08:58 PM   #14
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700c wheels will work with most older brakes reach-wise (like the dia-compes), and you can probably find a set for cheap on cl
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Old 05-11-11, 07:58 AM   #15
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I don't have the bike yet (I bought it from a shop rather than CR because, well, they had a yellow one like she wanted right there and the extra $ was worth the convenience), but when I get it home I'll mess around. Maybe I'll get lucky and the brakes will reach...
BTW, she's really pretty (the girl and the bike)

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Old 05-11-11, 08:05 AM   #16
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why not drop the fd and run a single chainring. Out back, swap an indexed 6 speed freewheel, and add an indexing thumb shifter.
p o s i t r o n

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Old 05-11-11, 08:08 AM   #17
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700c wheels will work with most older brakes reach-wise (like the dia-compes), and you can probably find a set for cheap on cl
This was gonna be my vote. Re-use old or build with 700s. Brakes, maybe the existing ones, can be made to work and the wheelset will be more re-purposeable. I also vote for the idea of one front chainring and an indexed rear. No screwy math involved. Just click one way for easier, the other way for faster. Unless, of course, you build a wheel, then by all means go IGH.
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Old 05-11-11, 08:10 AM   #18
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I bet that 590's would work well on that Schwinn. Drop the FD and put in an AW out back. I don't know how much she rides but 3 speeds is enough for city riding most of the time -in Chicago you can get away with a single-speed so 3 speeds is luxury. The only thing we have around here that even approaches hills are the overpasses and the bridges.

The BB is going to be lowered just enough to make the bike MORE comfortable to ride with the 590's and the brake issue shouldn't be much at all. You'll get much more fender clearance as well.
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Old 05-13-11, 05:33 PM   #19
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Wow, brake reach is MORE than adequate with the 590s on the Sprite. The next dilemma... what to do about the double crankset. It's a double. Use the small ring and ignore the large ring? Try to remove the large ring? Or, the weirdo option - leave both derailleurs on, use the rear as a chain tensioner and have a 6-speed. This is without a doubt the cheapest, path of least resistance option for my fiance to never have to experience friction shifting (well, the front doesn't count - nobody can mess that up.
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