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  1. #1
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    cranks on department store bikes?

    My friend recently bought me a cheap 70's department store bike (10-speed) but it's not in my possession yet. I'm hoping to convert it to a fixed gear. I was wondering if anyone knows what type of crank these bikes typically have. But my real question is: will I be able to remove extra chainrings and just use the largest one? (I'm trying to avoid buying a new crank)

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Senior Member c_m_shooter's Avatar
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    Probably a one piece crank with the chainrings rivited together. I only have one bike with that type of crank and the chainrings are replacable. They can be bought from anyplace that stocks BMX parts.
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  3. #3
    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    Yep - and they are called by the name of the place where they were first manufactured in quantity: Ashtabula (Ohio) cranks.
    How do you keep an idiot in suspense?

  4. #4
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    Cool! So it's probably best that I buy a new crankset? I don't know what kind of BB the bike has yet since it's not in my hands. I'm thinking of buying a new BB as well... but of course, this little project of mine is becoming not so cheap anymore! Any tips? What would you do?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by myrtillerose View Post
    Cool! So it's probably best that I buy a new crankset? I don't know what kind of BB the bike has yet since it's not in my hands. I'm thinking of buying a new BB as well... but of course, this little project of mine is becoming not so cheap anymore! Any tips? What would you do?
    That's do-able but it will bump up the cost factor. Do you remember the song about a $10 dollar horse and a $40.00 saddle?

    There's actually 2 different ways to do it:
    1. Buy a BMX 3 piece crank.
    2. Buy a press-in adapter and a cartridge road bike bottom bracket and crankset.

    If you decide to keep the one piece crank you'll probably want a chainring in about the 40 tooth range.

  6. #6
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    Haha, yeah. Saving money is definitely important for me. Thanks for your tips!

    I had an idea. I was at the bike co-op near me and they had 170mm cranksets for $21 (I'd like 165mm but I'll settle) and bottom brackets for cheap too (I'd probably by a 103mm?). It would still save me money.

    Would that work?

  7. #7
    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    I'd be interested to know, too. But I have little experience in trying to swap out a low-level Ashtabula for a 3-piece cotterless crankset. What kind of bottom-bracket does this crankset at the Co-op have?
    How do you keep an idiot in suspense?

  8. #8
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    Well, the co-op has a large variety of cranksets and BBs laying around. I'm very new at this stuff, so I didn't really have a close look at the BBs... I need to go back there. But I would think they have a bunch of different kinds. This is my first attempt at a fixed gear conversion so I'm really not too concerned about having great quality parts, I just want the bike to work My plan is to walk in, grab the crankset I want and find a BB that fits, hehehe.

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