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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    OK, So I just might re-do my bike, but

    So I really enjoy my 80's Schwinn Super Le Tour but would like to have a modern shifting system. I don't want a carbon fiber bike I want the look of steel.
    Here are a few of my questions. I know this will not be an authentic restore.
    Can the BB be upgrade?
    I am thinking of going from a 6 speed freewheel to a modern cassette. I know the rear drop out will have to be spread. Will this intefer with the possibility of installing a triple chain ring?
    I know I will go to 700c wheels and that will require long reach brakes.
    Am I overlooking anything at this point?
    I plan to shop ebay for parts over the fall and winter months.
    Any input would be great.
    Thanks

  2. #2
    RIP Sonny RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tandem Tom View Post
    So I really enjoy my 80's Schwinn Super Le Tour but would like to have a modern shifting system. I don't want a carbon fiber bike I want the look of steel.
    Here are a few of my questions. I know this will not be an authentic restore.
    Can the BB be upgrade?
    I am thinking of going from a 6 speed freewheel to a modern cassette. I know the rear drop out will have to be spread. Will this intefer with the possibility of installing a triple chain ring?
    I know I will go to 700c wheels and that will require long reach brakes.
    Am I overlooking anything at this point?
    I plan to shop ebay for parts over the fall and winter months.
    Any input would be great.
    Thanks
    BB can definitely be upgrade, should be a 68 shell english threading.
    I assume you know already you're going to need a new rear wheel to go from freewheel to cassette I've never had any issues with dropout spread affecting my front chainrings.. but I could just be lucky, if I were you I might be steering more towards a compact double however I don't know how you ride etc...looks like your good otherwise but I'm sure someone will come along and cover fine details for ya
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

  3. #3
    Must... ride... more... Phil_gretz's Avatar
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    Count the cost. It's time to draw up a budget and see what you'd have to spend.

    700c wheelset (assume you get 9 or 10-speed cassette with it)
    Tires?
    Rear Derailleur
    Bottom Bracket cartridge
    Crankset
    Front Derailleur
    Chain
    Brifters
    Cabling
    Brake Calipers and Pads

    Suddenly, this is going to cost way more (neighborhood of $500 if done carefully - do your own estimates) and re-using the Schwinn frame no longer makes sense.

    Why not save that budget and buy a used 5 year old bike for the price? It'll be complete, and you can keep the Schwinn as a bad weather backup.

  4. #4
    Cottered Crank Amesja's Avatar
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    Buy a bent/broken modern bike on CL -swap parts. That's the easiest/best/cheapest way to get a full bike's worth of parts for cheap.

    Buying them piece by piece is going to get expensive unless you are a very patient and hard-working Craigslist buyer or have a really good swap or coop locally. Still, it's hard to buy a while bike's worth of upgrades for cheaper than you can buy a whole bike.

    I once bought an entire bike for $160 -only thing wrong was the RD and RD hanger were roached. Lots of good parts were salvaged off of that bike. That's the way to go. One of these days I'll have to sell off that frame and carbon fork. I would love to get $75 for them. That would really bring down the cost of the other parts -most of which went in to a CX build i built around a frame I picked up for $40 on CL...
    '74 Raleigh Carlton Competition w/ Ultegra | '97 Trek 720 Singletrack CX-er w/ 105 | '64 Raleigh LTD-3 modernized w/ all alloy components |'69 Raleigh Twenty | '54 Raleigh Sports

  5. #5
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tandem Tom View Post
    I plan to shop ebay for parts over the fall and winter months.
    Any input would be great.
    Thanks
    Very expensive plan.

    Instead, as another lister recommended, find a donor bike, and swap the entire drivetrain. Should be about the same cost as just what the wheels will cost you.
    See some of my bikes on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BillsVintageSteelBikes

    Or visit my finished bikes flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/billssteelbikes/

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Thanks for these good suggestions!

  7. #7
    Cottered Crank Amesja's Avatar
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    I would suggest you look for something in an 8-speed geartrain. 8-speed is older, proven technology and is much more robust and long-lived than 10 or even 9-speed. The chain is beefier and lasts nearly 2x the miles as as well as the cassettes. they are also almost 1/2 the price for replacements. So that 4x the savings over 9+ geartrains/mile.

    To save a little money if you go 8-speed you can get yourself a set of 8-speed Ultegra bar-ends if the donor bike you buy has busted up brifters (many often are) or cheaper Sora. Heck, you could probably sell a decent set of brifters sometimes for nearly what you pay for a donor bike if they are Tiagra or better. That would help you fund the rest of the project. Brifters often are troublesome while the Ultegra Bar-ends are darn near bomb-proof.

    One thing to watch out for is brake reach. If you are upgrading from a 27" wheel to a 700c wheelset then you probably will have an issue with reach -especially with modern Shimano groupset dual-pivots. They are only 49mm of reach. Measure the reach you have now from the pivot to the center of your rims and add 4 more mm for the conversion. You might have to get Tektro R559 long-reach brakes which can do 55-73mm of reach. Sell the brakes you get on your donor bike on CL to recoup losses. Sell everything you don't end up using on CL. You will have to learn to be a buy/sell madman on CL if you are going to do this without spending a ton of money on this project.

    A word to the wise with buying and selling on CL loose parts are worth more on CL than groups of parts or whole bikes. Buying things individually will almost always cost more than buying a whole bike or a whole set. Same with selling. Always sell stuff individually for the maximum price.

    You could finance a whole bike build if you bought cheap but fairly modern bikes, stripped them for parts and sold them off individually. This is the mindset you will need if you want to take on this project and not end up spending more money for a frankenbike than you could have bought a WHOLE NEW BIKE lightly used a couple of years old -or even new from online like a place like bikesdirect.com
    Last edited by Amesja; 07-17-12 at 09:06 PM.
    '74 Raleigh Carlton Competition w/ Ultegra | '97 Trek 720 Singletrack CX-er w/ 105 | '64 Raleigh LTD-3 modernized w/ all alloy components |'69 Raleigh Twenty | '54 Raleigh Sports

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