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  1. #1
    Senior Member CNY James's Avatar
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    tell me that this is a good idea, or a bad idea...

    yesterday I was visiting my in laws and my father in law & i went for a ride. I didnt bring a bike so i borrowed his Fuji Track. First time really riding a single speed for any distance (about 9 miles yesterday) I really really liked it. I had been thinking of buying/building a SS bike before but this kind of put me into action. I found the SE Lager on Jenson marked down to $350.

    Here comes my dilema...

    I have $300 in my play money & dont want to deplete it. I had kicked around the idea of selling my Fuji road bike earlier this year (built a new primary bike) but after riding it, realized that I liked having a lighter faster bike to compliment my heavy slower primary bike. I am confident I could sell the Fuji for at least the $350 needed to buy the Lager. What would you do? I have a geared bike so I wont be stuck with only a SS but still... I could hold out & save some more money toward the purchase but this is discounted 46% so I fear that even if I save more to buy it with, the price might not be so low.

    So my choices are:
    Keep my Fuji
    Sell my Fuji, buy the SE Lager
    Keep my Fuji, wait until I have more cash, & wait for a good deal on a nice SS bike down the road

  2. #2
    Bike addict, dreamer AdamDZ's Avatar
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    I owned SE Draft once and had really bad experience with its quality and SE denial attitude. You'd be better off putting one together by yourself, although you may not fit within $350 unless you buy used frame. These are low end bikes.

    So IMHO, keep the Fuji, wait until you have more cash and get a better quality SS later.

    You may also give these guys a call and see what they can do for you:

    http://www.nycbikes.com/

    Their frames and wheels are really strong.

  3. #3
    Bent builder purplepeople's Avatar
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    Parting with a Fuji would be like parting with a Bridgestone. Don't do it. Buy some parts and turn the Fuji into a fixie for a while. Then when you tire of it or the trend goes away, you can return it to original.

    :)ensen.
    Those who claim to be making history are usually just repeating it.

    My tilting trike: Video and Images

  4. #4
    Senior Member CNY James's Avatar
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    It's not a vintage Fuji, not sure if that would affect your advice.

    I looked at some parts needed to go along with your suggestion and it looks like I'd be facing ~$250 to convert my Fuji to SS... not worth it at that point, I'd just spring the extra $100 and buy the SS outright.

    Adam, what types of problems did you have with your Draft? The Draft is a step below the Lager, not sure if that really matters...

    At this point, I am leaning further from selling my Fuji for the Lager but who knows, my mind changes with the time of day. I might hold off til June, that's bonus month so who knows... but could still probably be talked into or out of a decision 100 times between now and then.

  5. #5
    Bike addict, dreamer AdamDZ's Avatar
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    My Draft started literally falling apart from the first ride from the LBS: the wheel reflectors came off. Then one pedal broke. Then I started popping spokes weekly, spokes would pop even when the bike wasn't moving, wheels were never true, then bottom bracket and freewheel fell apart - all within weeks. The bottom bracket was something non-standard, by the way. SE denied having any problems with these bikes. Even the LBS warned me that I will need to replace the wheels on this thing, all their customers did. I ended up replacing everything on this bike except for the frame, the fork, the handlebar and the seatpost. It was a total piece of junk, the saddle and the pedals were garbage. I wanted to keep it though, because I liked the frame, it was steel and made by Fuji and even after replacing the parts it was still not that bad of a deal: pain $200 and spent another $200-250 on upgrades.

    BTW, I wanted to return it but the next one up was like $600 and the LBS guys advised me to keep it and gradually replace the parts so I'll actually end up with a better bike and they did the upgrades without charging me for labor so the final bike turned to be pretty good.

    So the bottom line: it was a good frame but crappy, cheap parts. If you can find a used Draft for $100 get it for the frame, strip it down and install your own parts, just keep in mind the BB is non-standard, I forgot what it was but it needed some kind of adapter.

    After the upgrades it took a beating for two years without a single problem.
    Last edited by AdamDZ; 04-20-10 at 11:36 AM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member CNY James's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamDZ View Post
    My Draft started literally falling apart from the first ride from the LBS: the wheel reflectors came off. Then one pedal broke. Then I started popping spokes weekly, spokes would pop even when the bike wasn't moving, wheels were never true, then bottom bracket and freewheel fell apart - all within weeks. The bottom bracket was something non-standard, by the way. SE denied having any problems with these bikes. Even the LBS warned me that I will need to replace the wheels on this thing, all their customers did. I ended up replacing everything on this bike except for the frame, the fork, the handlebar and the seatpost. It was a total piece of junk, the saddle and the pedals were garbage. I wanted to keep it though, because I liked the frame, it was steel and made by Fuji and even after replacing the parts it was still not that bad of a deal: pain $200 and spent another $200-250 on upgrades.

    BTW, I wanted to return it but the next one up was like $600 and the LBS guys advised me to keep it and gradually replace the parts so I'll actually end up with a better bike and they did the upgrades without charging me for labor so the final bike turned to be pretty good.

    So the bottom line: it was a good frame but crappy, cheap parts. If you can find a used Draft for $100 get it for the frame, strip it down and install your own parts, just keep in mind the BB is non-standard, I forgot what it was but it needed some kind of adapter.

    After the upgrades it took a beating for two years without a single problem.
    yikes.
    I kind of wish the Nashbar road frame came with a fork, that's probably asking too much for a $100 frame but it would make it easier to justify buying one for a build up. I've been browsing craigslist too, maybe if something comes along.... chances are though I am not going to do anything before winter...

  7. #7
    Bike addict, dreamer AdamDZ's Avatar
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    Few things I learned from my experience with the SE Draft and a couple of bikes that followed:

    1) You can't get a decent new bike that can handle regular daily, hard rides (commute, daily workout or grocery runs) for less than $300-500 (SS-geared)
    2) It's better to look for good used bike and fix it up a bit or...
    3) If you want a perfect, strong bike, build your own, but that will cost more unless you use old parts.

    You can get away with cheap bike if you ride infrequently or your ride is easy (good pavement, slow riding, no cargo). Anything more strenuous and a cheap bike will fail. I see a lot of people commuting on cheap dept store bikes, but they're all messed up: broken derailleurs, malfunctioning brakes, things squeaking and rattling, bent wheels, etc. Some people can put up with that or simply can't afford anything better. But if you can wait and spend more money later, it's better this way.

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