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Old 09-01-09, 11:44 PM   #1
3speed
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Where to buy new 3speed wheel/hub?

Not sure where this would go so general discussion it is. I want to turn a kinda light weight 12speed road bike into a 3speed, mountain bike style handle bar and seat kinda bike to beat around town on, to/from work, etc. Where's a good place to buy a 3 speed wheel/set-up? Should I just ebay a used one or do they make better new ones? It doesn't need to be anything special. It's going on a beater frame that's going to be pretty bare and basic just to get around on. If you could even point me in the right direction that would be great. I just moved to a biking city and I'm not quite at the stage yet to even know how to research this stuff effectively. Yahoo and google searches are turning up tons of stuff other than what I'm looking for.
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Old 09-02-09, 03:08 AM   #2
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A LBS could take care of that for you.
Also a number of on-line merchants-
eg. Soma, Velo-Oange and Harris Cycle offer built up 3 speed wheels etc.
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Old 09-02-09, 01:29 PM   #3
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Harris Cyclery can also build you a custom wheel using any hub they can obtain as can any good LBS. Depending on the frame dropout width it might have to be cold set to fit the new hub and wheel, presuming that it is steel.

What size rims and tires are currently on the bike?

Also what is the terrain like where you are riding? If many hills you might want to consider a 5, 7 or 8 speed hub wheel. More expensive but the wider overall gear range can be an advantage.
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Old 09-03-09, 12:43 AM   #4
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The bike would be a ~78 Motobecane Mirage. 27" wheels. It's currently stock and doesn't seem like it was hardly ever ridden. Due to how clean it is and I've read that they're decent enough bikes, I thought it would make a good candidate for a build. I'll be riding it on the road/sidewalk, and I currently have been riding a ~73 sears free spirit three speed. I know, not the best bike, but I like it, it's clean, and it was only $5 from original owner at a garage sale, works great, nice paint and all.

I like the simplicity of the 3 speed and having the gear lever right at the handle bars and it seemed like a simple and cheap way to get what I want out of my bike. The LBS said it would cost at least a couple hundred at minimum with cheap parts to put the multi-gear shifting on the bars because I'd need to upgrade rear wheel, rear shifter, and shift levers, and possibly more. I'd keep the ten speed set-up if there was a way to put the rear/5 speed shift lever on the bars and have it shift smoothly and definately (no half way between gear grinding, etc). I'd like a generally more "road bike" style bike, but with wider straight handlebars to make it a little better for going up and down curbs and generally more abusive riding than a typical drop down road bar would be ideal for.

I wish I knew more about this, as I used to be Really into BMX in high school and knew exactly what was made for them and where to get a decent price for it, but I'm very new to road biking and rather uninformed as to what's even available. Thanks for all the help.

Last edited by 3speed; 09-03-09 at 01:00 AM.
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Old 09-03-09, 01:46 PM   #5
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Check your state laws. In most states adults riding bikes on sidewalks is technicallly illegal. In Nevada any bike riding on sidewalks is supposedly illegal unless you have individual owners permission as sidewalks are the adjacent property owners land rather than city or state property. This is from the Nevada bicycling handbook.
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Old 09-03-09, 05:08 PM   #6
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Velo -Orange has 700c three speed wheels in stock.
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Old 09-03-09, 06:26 PM   #7
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For future reference:

I bought a standard Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hub, an AW, laced in a standard 26-inch rim. It was the classic build for 3-spd's. Nothing fancy. The wheel needed truing. If you know how to true wheels, this should not present a problem. I also had them toss in a front wheel to match - $30.

It works as it should - no surprises.
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Old 09-03-09, 10:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tatfiend View Post
Check your state laws. In most states adults riding bikes on sidewalks is technicallly illegal.
I know, but (probably about to upset some of you here) if a person is riding on a busy road and the sidewalk is completely clear, it just makes sense, and makes someone less of an ass to take the sidewalk rather than hold up traffic and have people having to wait for gaps to try to get around you. It may happen, but I have yet to hear of someone getting a ticket for riding on a long empty sidewalk as oppose to blocking traffic. It makes sense to ride in the road a good bit of the time, especially depending on what kind of riding your doing, but not always. I've got a couple stretches (probably ~1mile and 3/4mile) on my ride to work that are just long straight sidewalks that run on busy roads, and there's never anyone on the sidewalks. I Seriously doubt I'll get a ticket for riding there, and if I do, the cop is just a jerk and I'll happily peddle along slowly in front of him when he's done writing it.

Thanks a lot for the links. Helpful info there.

That Velo Orange site seems like a pretty good little spot for some cheaper vintage stuff. Very cool.

I'm finding a LOT of stuff just from reading here constantly the past few days, so thanks to everyone in general for that.
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Old 09-04-09, 04:29 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tatfiend View Post
Check your state laws. In most states adults riding bikes on sidewalks is technicallly illegal. In Nevada any bike riding on sidewalks is supposedly illegal unless you have individual owners permission as sidewalks are the adjacent property owners land rather than city or state property. This is from the Nevada bicycling handbook.
In many states the sidewalk law is local municipality code rather than statewide. I am sure every state is a bit different. The area I am in right now (Iowa City, Iowa) actually utilizes extra wide sidewalks as part of it's bike infrastructure. The largest town close to where I live in NC prohibits all wheeled objects from the sidewalks in the downtown area. They had to go back and amend the ordinance after some over achieving police officer attempted to ticket someone with a stroller on the sidewalk The current ordinance there now allows children under the age of twelve to ride on the side walk, as well as hand carts, push carts, strollers, etc. But does not allow skateboards, roller blades or bicycles.

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