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  1. #1
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Building up a commuter bike!

    My son found an old Trek 790 (1990, 'm pretty sure) in an alley! So he brought it home. It's in a good state of neglect, but it can be revived!

    Lugged True Temper steel frame (looks straight to me)
    700C wheels
    Cantilever brakes
    Old school Deore XT 3x7 set up
    Full touring braze ons: fenders/racks

    So, I've got a project to complete before gas prices go completely insane!

    I've already stripped it all down, and am starting to plan out what I'm going to do.
    I'm going to keep the BB, crank & derailleurs, but those old shifters are garbage. Keeping the Tioga T-Bone stem (pretty cool, actually). Keeping the brakes (needs new pads. Hopefully keeping the wheels, but the rear is going to need some TLC. It needs a couple of spokes and a good truing.

    Gotta get a new seat post and saddle; better shifters; fenders; rear rack. I've already got some brake housing.

    The biggest dilemma is what handlebar to get. It came with an old school, non rising mountain bike bar. My initial choices are:

    Soma Condorina:


    Soma Sparrow:


    Or maybe just a regular riser-style mountain bike bar.

  2. #2
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    The Soma Sparrow looks like a really nice bar, I've thought about getting one for my bike. Maybe for my new bike. Very comfortable hand position, but it would need to be, as there's not many other places to put your hands.

    The Condorina would only work if the stem splits apart on the handlebar clamp side. I don't think it will work with the T-bone, unless it's a newer one with a 2-piece bar clamp.

    Oh yeah, and before anyone else says it, "this thread is worthless without pics"

  3. #3
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Another vote for the Sparrow. What tires will you run?

  4. #4
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyStickman View Post
    The Soma Sparrow looks like a really nice bar, I've thought about getting one for my bike. Maybe for my new bike. Very comfortable hand position, but it would need to be, as there's not many other places to put your hands.

    The Condorina would only work if the stem splits apart on the handlebar clamp side. I don't think it will work with the T-bone, unless it's a newer one with a 2-piece bar clamp.

    Oh yeah, and before anyone else says it, "this thread is worthless without pics"
    Darn, I didn't think about that.

    I'll post up some pics of it in it's "before" condition.

  5. #5
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
    Another vote for the Sparrow. What tires will you run?
    Well, after the pointing out of the bar/stem incompatibility with the Condorina, the Sparrow is now the front runner. Besides, I've got a sparrow on another bike, and I do like them.

    As for tires, that's up in the air for now. I'm considering the following:

    (all 700 x 32)
    Michelin City
    Michelin Dynamic
    Vittoria Randonneur CX
    Ritchey Speedmax
    Bontrager Hardcase

  6. #6
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Before:
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Senior Member xizangstan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frpax View Post
    Before:
    Hey! Wait a minute! He didn't find that in the alley. Somebody took that out of my yard!

    (Just kidding. Carry on.)

    Who is John Galt?

  8. #8
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xizangstan View Post
    hey! Wait a minute! He didn't find that in the alley. Somebody took that out of my yard!

    (just kidding. Carry on.)

    lol

  9. #9
    12mph+ commuter
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    Jebus, that's a long stem.

  10. #10
    Senior Member JAG410's Avatar
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    Salsa Woodchipper bar and a higher stem. Don't forget there's the cazbike.org swap is coming up, so you can usually find a ton of goodies there to build it up.

    http://blog.cazbike.org/2011/01/cazb...h-12-2011.html

  11. #11
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAG410 View Post
    Salsa Woodchipper bar and a higher stem. Don't forget there's the cazbike.org swap is coming up, so you can usually find a ton of goodies there to build it up.

    http://blog.cazbike.org/2011/01/cazb...h-12-2011.html
    I thought about a drop bar (I've got a couple on hand already, but decided against it.
    I've got a few race style bikes, so I'm used to the low race type position.

  12. #12
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scheherezade View Post
    Jebus, that's a long stem.
    I'm a long torsoed guy! Long stems work very well for me.

  13. #13
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
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    That seems like a bike in decent shape. I'm assuming you checked with the police to see if someone reported a bike stolen?

    I used to work at a group home and heard stories all the time about items they found. They must be the luckiest kids in the world since they have found everything from MP3 players to bikes to video game units.
    lil brown bat wrote:
    Wow, aren't other people stupid? It's a good thing that we're so smart. Yay us.

  14. #14
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exile View Post
    That seems like a bike in decent shape. I'm assuming you checked with the police to see if someone reported a bike stolen?
    My son said that this was semi buried in a whole bunch of other junk... looked like someone was cleaning out the garage and throwing away the old stuff.

    But I have a friend on the local Police force, and had her check. We're all good!

    The only thing that is junk are the shifters. Pretty much everything else is salvageable.

  15. #15
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frpax View Post
    My son said that this was semi buried in a whole bunch of other junk... looked like someone was cleaning out the garage and throwing away the old stuff.

    But I have a friend on the local Police force, and had her check. We're all good!
    I guess working with juvenile delinquents have made me skeptical. They were great kids, but had some stoorrries!

    Anyway, have you though about putting on trekking bars? Once I get finances in order I plan on putting them on my early 90's MTB.
    lil brown bat wrote:
    Wow, aren't other people stupid? It's a good thing that we're so smart. Yay us.

  16. #16
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exile View Post
    Anyway, have you though about putting on trekking bars? Once I get finances in order I plan on putting them on my early 90's MTB.
    I had thought about it... but not given a trekking bar any serious consideration, though.

  17. #17
    Steel is real, baby! frpax's Avatar
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    The build is progressing much nicer than I expected!

    I cleaned & repacked the BB, hubs & headset and all of them were in surprisingly good condition! Only the non-drive side BB cup had a teeny bit of pitting. Once it was all cleaned and repacked, it's not even noticeable! I'm happy about that! Everything else was perfectly fine! I had to disassemble the rear derailleur cage and really clean & re-grease the jockey wheels. Now they are almost like new. Very little wear on them (again, surprisingly)

    I got a new seat post and have a saddle on order.

    I've got a new set of rapid fire shifter/brake levers (for the Shimano 7 speed) on order. They will come with shifting cables & housing, so no need to buy those. I have new brake cables & housing & pads ready to go.

    I decided (for now) to stick with the flat bar. But I may cut a couple of inches of each end to shorten it up some.

    For the frame, I took some rubbing compound and gave the whole thing a good rubbing. That took of just about all the scratches and scuffs. Only thing left are the chips in the paint. I might take some Testors model paint and do some touch up.

    I'll add a Topeak Explorer rack that I already have, and will add some fenders, eventually. I also have a Nite Rider light sitting around, needing a home. I think I also have a blinkey rear light somewhere too.
    Last edited by frpax; 03-14-11 at 10:20 PM.

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