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  1. #1
    Senior Member Briareos's Avatar
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    Converting Singlespeed Frame to Geared?

    If I wished to add braze-ons for derailleurs, and possibly replacing the dropouts on a steel frame, could this be done inexpensively? The frame in question is a EAI Bareknuckle frame. It has track-ends and no braze-ons, including brake-stops.

    Would it end up being too much work/cost to add the braze-ons and the drop-outs and touch the paint up?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    It's very doable. As for cost what is your budget?

    May I ask why you wish to do this instead of selling the frame a buying a proper one.

    FWIW, this was done a lot in Latvia during Soviet times. There was a lack of decent road frames but a lot of track frames around. I still see track frames around from time to time that have had the dropouts changed.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Briareos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    It's very doable. As for cost what is your budget?

    May I ask why you wish to do this instead of selling the frame a buying a proper one.

    FWIW, this was done a lot in Latvia during Soviet times. There was a lack of decent road frames but a lot of track frames around. I still see track frames around from time to time that have had the dropouts changed.
    Thanks for the reply! I was losing hope there.

    Quite simply, I can't find any road frames quite like the Bareknuckle I love so much. Good steel tubing (Dedaccai 12.5 com?). All I want is a classic looking TIG-welded or fillet-brazed, black road frame with a straight fork. I can't find anything like that anywhere, and I've been searching. The Bareknuckle also has more "aggressive" geometry, which would be nice because I wish to race criteriums.

    I can get a Bareknuckle for a couple hundred less than the standard 550'ish cost. All I wish to add are brake-stops on the top-tube, downtube bosses or shifter cable bosses, the bosses under the bottom bracket for shifter cables and on the chainstay....And road dropouts, OR just add a derailleur hanger from the track-ends if it's cheaper and would work just as well.

    Sorta seems like a lot but I would think it would be fast, minor work, but I'm no framebuilder. The thought had crossed my mind to try and do it myself if I could find the supplies but that search has since been fruitless.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    ^^^^

    It sounds expensive and quite frankly unnecessary. You'd have to paint the frame when you are finished too.There are plenty of decent road bikes out there, search a bit and you'll find them.

    Soma and Surly are two places to start looking.

  5. #5
    delicious 40x14's Avatar
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    You don't need brake cable guides on the top tube, simply run a full length of housing to the rear brake and clamp it using any one of several methods. You can get vintage steel brake cable guides on ebay, newer plastic ones from bike shops where mtn bikes are sold, or use zip-ties to hold the cables in place.

    For the downtube bosses seek out an old set of downtube shifters that clamp onto a bossless frame. These are not hard to come by, quite popular in the 60's and 70's. Campy and Simplex both made nice ones. Attach it to your frameset, remove the old shift levers from it, and you have a set of sturdy bosses that won't damage your paint, frame, or wallet too badly. Same goes for the under-bottom bracket guide.

    The hard part might be getting a 130 spaced wheel into the bareknuckle's 120 space rear end. You'll need to cold set the rear triangle, and swap out the track ends or put in a derailleur hanger. As for going about this I have no good advice.

    ps. I re-converted my peugeot fixie to a geared bike. (The ugly paint is to deter NYC bike thieves.)

    The frame has no shifter or brake bosses, and a previous owner had filed off the derailleur hanger. It currently runs shimano 105 and the parts mentioned above cost under $50 in all. The rear is spaced to 126, I was able to remove a spacer from the rear wheel instead of cold setting.

    Good luck!


    ps. or look for a good deal on a second hand colnago.


    Quote Originally Posted by Briareos View Post
    Thanks for the reply! I was losing hope there.

    Quite simply, I can't find any road frames quite like the Bareknuckle I love so much. Good steel tubing (Dedaccai 12.5 com?). All I want is a classic looking TIG-welded or fillet-brazed, black road frame with a straight fork. I can't find anything like that anywhere, and I've been searching. The Bareknuckle also has more "aggressive" geometry, which would be nice because I wish to race criteriums.

    I can get a Bareknuckle for a couple hundred less than the standard 550'ish cost. All I wish to add are brake-stops on the top-tube, downtube bosses or shifter cable bosses, the bosses under the bottom bracket for shifter cables and on the chainstay....And road dropouts, OR just add a derailleur hanger from the track-ends if it's cheaper and would work just as well.

    Sorta seems like a lot but I would think it would be fast, minor work, but I'm no framebuilder. The thought had crossed my mind to try and do it myself if I could find the supplies but that search has since been fruitless.

  6. #6
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    Just get one of these.
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/asc.html

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