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  1. #1
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Modifying/upgrading an old hybrid to make it fit better?

    I have an old GT hybrid from 2002 (about $700) - back when hybrids were more MTB style and before I really knew anything about bikes (not sure I still know a whole lot!). I never rode it a whole lot, and I've since gotten other, better bikes. In hindsight, after riding much more on my current bikes, I realize that the GT the LBS sold me seems one size too small. Based on sizing guides, etc. I probably should have gotten a "large", but I was sold a "medium". At that time, I didn't know any better and I recall it might have been a trend to go for a smaller sized bike too.

    I never did feel that comfortable on the GT, and I think it's because I don't have enough front-to-back spacing. I can't move the seat back anymore, and I'm not sure I can re-position the handlebars forward anymore (maybe I can lower the stem a bit). I've been thinking of offloading the bike, but I doubt I can sell the bike for much though because of its age, eventhough it's in pretty good shape still.

    I was thinking that maybe the bike, with some modest upgrades (such as a lock out front suspension), could be turned into a casual commuter, particularly in the winter since it's an aluminum frame with 26" wheels. Any suggestions on what to do to make it more size appropriate? Is it even possible? Is it still worth it?
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  2. #2
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    Nothing amazing... cheap old 21 speed mtb
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    Longer stem, or use a riser bar rotated forward to give you a bit of extra reach. Also an offset seatpost. This bike is one size too small for me but it was close enough and perfect in everyother way..

    26 soma.jpg

    The offset seatpost allows the saddle to be centered and the risers facing forward give me more reach.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    I think my seatpost is already offset. Never thought about a riser bar... actually, I'm not sure I can use a riser bar given my old stem.
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  4. #4
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    I changed the stem as well. Took them off an old mtb I was stripping anyway.

  5. #5
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    From the sounds of it, sell your current bike and get a new one that fits if you can swing it.

  6. #6
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    A stem riser is often the ticket. Even if the frame fits correctly, usually a stock stem will not get high enough even with spacers to get up to a more comfortable riding position. If that doesn't work, the stock stem may have to be replaced with an adjustable stem to dial in the fit.

    That's the most cost-effective way to make sure a bike fits you and how you like to ride.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hauptmann6 View Post
    From the sounds of it, sell your current bike and get a new one that fits if you can swing it.
    That's what my wife says... quit fussing with something that doesn't fit!

    Quote Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
    A stem riser is often the ticket. Even if the frame fits correctly, usually a stock stem will not get high enough even with spacers to get up to a more comfortable riding position. If that doesn't work, the stock stem may have to be replaced with an adjustable stem to dial in the fit.
    I haven't changed a stem before, so I'm not too knowledgeable about them. I have an adjustable quill stem on the old hybrid - I guess that was what was popular back then. I can move the stem up and down, and rotate it up and down, but I don't think I can adjust to get more "reach" per se. Are there such options for quill stems?
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    That's what my wife says... quit fussing with something that doesn't fit!



    I haven't changed a stem before, so I'm not too knowledgeable about them. I have an adjustable quill stem on the old hybrid - I guess that was what was popular back then. I can move the stem up and down, and rotate it up and down, but I don't think I can adjust to get more "reach" per se. Are there such options for quill stems?
    You're in luck! With a quill stem, a Nitto Technomic stem is what you need to get you to a more comfortable riding position.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
    You're in luck! With a quill stem, a Nitto Technomic stem is what you need to get you to a more comfortable riding position.
    Nitto Technomic, eh? Thanks... never heard of it prior to now.
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

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