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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 06-04-06, 07:55 PM   #1
sabaka
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I built a new commuter bike (first frame up build)...

I got tired of being slow on my converted Trek 820 commuter, so I decided to build a new, lighter, faster machine. I am very pleased with the results. The old commuter bike was very, very practical, but it was just too slow and heavy. It would make a great bad weather bike, but I plan on converting it back to being a MTB. It weighed about 35 pounds in its commuter state !!

Here is a pic of the old commuter:



Anyway, the new bike is a dream to ride. This was the first time I have attempted to build a bike from the frame up, and it turned out great! I learned quite a bit. The only thing I did not have to do was install the headset/fork, as it came with the frame. This is actually a hybrid frame, and I decided to go with drop bars and STI shifters. The hybrid frame has a little shorter top tube than a same size road bike, plus it has room to install fenders. I bought the frame on eBay for $45. It was NOS, and had never had anything installed on it! It is a little shopworn in a couple of places, but they are not noticeable. It, and the fork, are cro-moly. The bike weighs about 25 pounds as is.

Here are the pics, followed by the parts list and prices...











Frame/Fork: Motobecane Cafe Latte (2002) - $45 ebay
Stem: Ritchey Pro 120mm, 17 deg - had laying around
Bars: Ritchey Logic Pro, 42cm - had laying around
Shifters: Shimano 600 STI, 8 speed - $90 ebay
Bar Tape: Cinelli cork blue - $12
Crankset: Shimano 600 52/42 - $28 ebay
BB: Shimano 600 - $8 ebay
FD: Shimano 600 - $5 ebay
RD: Shimano 600 - $10 ebay
Cassette: SRAM PG-850, 8 speed 12-26 - $29 shipped BikeIsland.com
Chain: SRAM PC-58, 8 speed - $19 shipped BikeIsland.com
Brakes: Tektro Long Reach - $34 shipped BikeIsland.com
Cables: Shimano Dura-Ace - $28 ebay
Wheels: Shimano 105 hubs/Mavic CXP11 rims - $70 ebay
Tires: Hutchinson Excel Stop Puncture 700x25c - $18 Nashbar
Rack: Bor Yeuh All-Paca - from old commuter
Seatpost: Ritchey Logic Pro - had laying around
Saddle: Brooks B17 Honey Champion Special - birthday present, taken from old commuter (the black B17 is now on my F400)
Pedals: Crank Bros. Eggbeaters - had laying around
Cages: cheap aluminum - had laying around
Computer: Cateye Enduro 8 - from old commuter


The cranks, BB, and FD are Shimano 600s from the 6 speed generation. They were NOS, and are as smooth as silk!

Adding all the above up, I spent $394 on the parts I put on this bike. I probably spent in the neighborhood of $100 in shipping for all the above, but that is offset a little by other parts and needs ordered from the same seller/source at the same time. Bike Island had great, personal customer service, and they have great prices with no charge for shipping. Nashbar was ok for me as usual. I have never had a problem out of them. The ebay buys were found over the period of a month or so.

I am so excited about this bike...I think it will serve me well for years to come!

Last edited by sabaka; 06-05-06 at 01:41 AM.
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Old 06-04-06, 08:07 PM   #2
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Good job Sabaka! Enjoy your new bike and let us know how it rides.
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Old 06-04-06, 08:11 PM   #3
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Nicely done! Looks great.
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Old 06-04-06, 09:45 PM   #4
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thats a fine looking bicycle for $400.

gonna get some fenders? nashbars got zefal 35mm for $17 minus 10 percent coupon

or take the ones from your old mtb commuter...

Last edited by seeker333; 06-04-06 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 06-04-06, 09:55 PM   #5
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I am probably going to wait on the fenders...I like the way this bike looks and rides as is right now. I had the Zefals on my old commuter, and they were a little flimsy. If I end up getting fenders, I will go for the Freddy Hardcores.

I don't ride much in the rain anyway, so like I said, I most likey won't bother getting them.
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Old 06-05-06, 12:50 AM   #6
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Very nice. I'm hoping to do something like that next year. How did you know if and how the frame fit your body or did you just guess?
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Old 06-05-06, 01:38 AM   #7
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I did not know for sure...I ride a 56 cm road bike, and knew that I wanted a more relaxed geometry than that, and possible a little smaller frame. So I found this 54 cm hybrid frame. The smaller standover and shorter top tube/wheelbase mean that I am in a little more upright position than on my road bike, which is comfortable. Plus, with the use of the drop bars, I have the option of crouching down in the drops if needed to get out of the wind or change positions.

Basically, I made a educated guess on the frame size/type I wanted and got lucky!
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Old 06-05-06, 06:43 AM   #8
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Great looking bike, especially for $400. I particularly like the frame, nice understated graphics. And of course silver components with a honey Brooks. Can you adjust that rack to get it level?

BTW, how's riding in the Shoals? I used to date a girl from that area and always enjoyed my trips there.
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Old 06-05-06, 06:49 AM   #9
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Very nice. And the deals you found on those components! $8 bottom bracket?!? I've been thinking about building a bike, and I only hope I can manage to collect this nice a collection of parts for as cost effective as you did. That's a nice looking bike...I'd be excited too!

If you do put fenders on, you may also want to look into the SKS ones. I have them on my "roadie" commuter, and I had Freddy Hardcores on my ATB commuter. So far, the SKS win for a quiet ride and durability. (I'll caveat that with the fact that the Freddy's were the "EZ mount" hardware...but they rattled like crazy!)
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Old 06-05-06, 10:00 AM   #10
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How's the gearing? 42-26 as a lowest gear sounds pretty steep. Looks nice.
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Old 06-05-06, 10:57 AM   #11
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Excellent! Great looking bike. Any reason you have the rack tipped back like that?

Now you will be fast enough to catch that tool with the backpack...
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Old 06-05-06, 11:57 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTcommuter
Great looking bike, especially for $400. I particularly like the frame, nice understated graphics. And of course silver components with a honey Brooks. Can you adjust that rack to get it level?

BTW, how's riding in the Shoals? I used to date a girl from that area and always enjoyed my trips there.
I have still got to play with the rack...I can get it level, but then it is too far underneath the saddle to effectively utilize all the surface area. I don't really mind it not being level, though, as it has a spring-loaded retainer that I use most of the time.

Cycling here in the Shoals is great! I have lived here my whole life. We have plenty of MTB trails around here, and on the road, the "hills" are not that big. The biggest climb I have around my house is about 1000 feet over a little less than a mile.

I can go about 30 miles from my house and have a climb that is a little worse than that.

Last edited by sabaka; 06-06-06 at 07:55 PM.
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Old 06-05-06, 11:59 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by banzai_f16
Very nice. And the deals you found on those components! $8 bottom bracket?!? I've been thinking about building a bike, and I only hope I can manage to collect this nice a collection of parts for as cost effective as you did. That's a nice looking bike...I'd be excited too!

If you do put fenders on, you may also want to look into the SKS ones. I have them on my "roadie" commuter, and I had Freddy Hardcores on my ATB commuter. So far, the SKS win for a quiet ride and durability. (I'll caveat that with the fact that the Freddy's were the "EZ mount" hardware...but they rattled like crazy!)
Thanks for the input! That is one of the things I hated about the Zefals. They were flimsy and noisy.
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Old 06-05-06, 12:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steev
How's the gearing? 42-26 as a lowest gear sounds pretty steep. Looks nice.
42x26 may sound steep, but it is not. With my tire size, crank arm length, etc., 42x26 gives me 42.6 gear inches. On my road bike, my lowest gear of 39x23 gives me 44.6 gear inches.

The gearing is perfect for the small rollers that we have around here. There is one climb on my commute that makes me stand up, but it is very short, and very steep.
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Old 06-05-06, 12:16 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newbojeff
Excellent! Great looking bike. Any reason you have the rack tipped back like that?

Now you will be fast enough to catch that tool with the backpack...


What are you talking about?!? I could have creamed that guy on my MTB had I not had to meet my wife! Stand up and ATTACK!!!
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Old 06-05-06, 12:24 PM   #16
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nice ride...i love the older shimano 600 stuff..
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Old 06-05-06, 12:36 PM   #17
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Great looking rig. The 6speed Shimano gear is very very smooth. I have some 105 6speed gear on my Gazelle road bike that I like quite a bit, though right not it's shifting 8speeds for me.
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Old 06-05-06, 01:27 PM   #18
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Great looking rig. The 6speed Shimano gear is very very smooth. I have some 105 6speed gear on my Gazelle road bike that I like quite a bit, though right not it's shifting 8speeds for me.
Well let me ask you a question then. I bought the 6 speed 600 rear derailer from the same seller with the intentions of using it on this bike shifting 8 speeds. How did you get the RD to shift correctly in the higher gear range? I know that, in general, rear derailers don't care how many speeds they are shifting...they just keep responding to cable pull. So I put the "6 speed" RD on the bike and attached the cables, chain, etc., and it shifted flawlessly through the lowest 6 cogs. But past that, it would not shift. It was like when the cable was completely loose, the highest cog the RD would line up with was the 3rd cog (i.e. when I disconnected the cable, the jockey pulleys were lined up with the 3rd smallest cog). I could not (even manually) get the RD to move past that point. I even backed the limit screws all the way out, and it would not go past that point.

I eventually gave up and found the 600 8 speed generation RD for cheap to put on there. I just figured that it was some sort of spacing issue...maybe the spring was not meant to move the derailer out any farther than the original 6 speed spacing, 126 mm?

I don't mind the newer 600 RD, as it matches the shifters, but it would have been cool to be able to get the other one to work, as it matches the cranks, FD, and BB. I even bought the matching 6 speed freewheel from the guy, though I have no use for it!
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Old 06-05-06, 01:31 PM   #19
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I adjusted the rear rack to be a little more level. It is still not completely level, but if I move it any farther, it will not be as useful.
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Old 06-05-06, 01:32 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Great looking rig. The 6speed Shimano gear is very very smooth. I have some 105 6speed gear on my Gazelle road bike that I like quite a bit, though right not it's shifting 8speeds for me.
Oh, and by the way, cuda, I have looked at all your bikes/threads in the past, and you do some mighty fine work yourself!
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Old 06-06-06, 05:55 PM   #21
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Well, I took the bike on her maiden commute this evening...WOW!!

Much better than the old commuter. I made the trip about 5 minutes faster on this bike than my times with the other bike (<8 mile commute one-way). I am generally even faster on the way home. It is still not as fast as when I commute on my full road bike, but that is to be expected, and it is not that much slower.

Even better is the fact that there are absolutely no squeaks, creaks, rattles, or otherwise nasty noises whatsoever! It rode beautifully, quietly, and quickly!

I am proud of my new ride!
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