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Old 07-16-12, 09:59 AM   #1
tamaso206
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Good value 1" road forks?

My beloved '87 Centurion Ironman has a steel unicrown fork that seems to max out at 25c tires. I love the frame, but I've been doing more 'pave' and light gravel riding on my local poor-man's Paris - Roubaix (C&O Canal Trail) and have been wanting to throw on some 28s. I don't think clearance will be an issue in the rear, so I am looking for any ideas on good-value non-unicrown 1" forks.

I'd prefer steel over carbon. Threadless may give me an excuse to convert, but either will work.

Is this a reasonable idea, or would I be better off time/expense-wise just looking for a different frameset with better tire clearances?

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Old 07-16-12, 10:47 AM   #2
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You could look for an early 1980s machine which tends to have more frame clearance and use the old standard ... "standard reach" ... caliper. That way you can still get a nice light tube-set with race geometry of you could look for a nice sport-touring frame from the 1980s as well... My opinion is that a different frame set is the better option.
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Old 07-16-12, 10:55 AM   #3
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The rear is going to be your bigger issue. Sorry to say.
Get a second frame and you're good to go. If on a budget you can move all the comonents over. Weight shouldn't be too much of an issue so maybe look for a lower level frame than the Ironman as itll get chipped to death from rocks
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Old 07-16-12, 11:23 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenomad View Post
The rear is going to be your bigger issue. Sorry to say.
Get a second frame and you're good to go. If on a budget you can move all the comonents over. Weight shouldn't be too much of an issue so maybe look for a lower level frame than the Ironman as itll get chipped to death from rocks
I have a (edit: Paint stripped) stripped ritchey fork that may work for you if you were interested. Pretty sure it can fit 28mm. Some bikes have much more generous clearances in the rear, but I am not sure if the ironman is one of them.

You may be better off going with a 2nd bike that is built for wider tires and dedicated to gravel and trails. 650B is an option too.

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Old 07-16-12, 05:13 PM   #5
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I've got Michelin Krylions in 700x25 on my '87 Ironman Expert. They measure out at almost 27mm wide on the stock rims. They only have a few hundred miles on them, and there's about 7mm of room between the tire and the fork - brake looks about the same clearance - and about 5mm between the rear tire and the rear brake. I think you could fit a 28 in there, but Lord help you if your wheel goes out of true or you break a spoke!

IMO, you'd be better off with a different frameset that has the room to comfortably run 28s than to try to shoehorn them onto the Ironman. Either that, or run 25s...I've done Rouge-Roubaix twice (not on the Ironman!), once with 25s and once with 28s, and didn't notice much difference. That's 105 miles with 20+ miles of bad dirt/gravel roads. A tough 700x25 (I used Gatorskins) will do fine.
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Old 07-17-12, 11:59 AM   #6
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ok thanks all. i had a feeling that would be the case.

guess i should just ride it and stop looking for excuses to fiddle around with it .

revchuck-- good to know. i had gatorskin 25s on it that gave me a solid tenure, but i recently swapped to panaracer pasela 25s that seem narrower, but i haven't measured.
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