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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 01-26-06, 04:35 PM   #1
tacofreedom
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Hi, I am looking to buy a fixed gear bike and have found on that fits me pretty well. It's a schwinn letour frame with these components:
front wheel - original wheel just had trued. quick release serfas 27 x 1 1/4" tire.
rear- flip flop suzue hub w/sun m13ii rim and an 18T cog with lock ring. and vittoria 700x32 cyclocross tire
cranks - super maxy double with only the 52T integrated chainring still attached. kinda has a mini chaingaurd that works very well for not getting your pants caught.
pedals -mks sylvan track w/black cages, metal clips, and black leather straps.

I was wondering what you guys thinks its worth and If you think any significant changes need to be made to it?
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Old 01-26-06, 04:48 PM   #2
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um, well, your wheels don't match- 27 in the front and 700 in the back?

Other than that those Schwinn frames can make great conversions. Can you take some pictures of the frame, especially the rear triangle and drop-outs?
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Old 01-26-06, 04:52 PM   #3
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Here the best pic I have.
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Old 01-26-06, 04:56 PM   #4
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I would pay $100-150 for that bike, depending on the condition of the frame and the wheels.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:00 PM   #5
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What problems would have a 27in in the front and a 700 in the back be? Also should I get a smaller chain ring? Pushing around that 52t could be kinda hard especially on hills.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:05 PM   #6
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There were lots of different letours made, and I had two of the extremes. The early ones were made in chicago and were tanks. My third fixie was one of these and it was absolutely indestructable (though heavy, 'butted' 4130). A car ran over it. Car was practically destroyed, I rode the bike home and made some minor repairs and it was good as new.

My first fixie was one of the later letours made by panasonic. Relatively light, but still strong. I loved that bike. It was lost in the "Great unpleasantness of 1999." (don't ask). My japanese Letour took 700's, not sure if they all did. The chicago took 27's. They probably all did.

I would drop 100-150 bucks or so on a chicago letour w/ that setup. A little more on a panasonic-made.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:09 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by tacofreedom
What problems would have a 27in in the front and a 700 in the back be? Also should I get a smaller chain ring? Pushing around that 52t could be kinda hard especially on hills.
no problems unless you want to carry around spare tires (you're probably not going to be doing 3rd world touring on this bike, I'm guessing) 700 tubes will fit either tire.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:09 PM   #8
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I believe the bike is "made in Japan for Schwinn of Chicago.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:10 PM   #9
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and 52x18 on a 32mm tire is something like 78 gear inches. That's huge for 'round town riding. Especially brakeless.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:15 PM   #10
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That's one of the later-model Le Tours made in Taiwan. Not as tough as the Chicago ones, but light and strong. I have a HUGE blue Chicago Le Tour frame in storage- thing must be like 61 or something. WAY too big for me, and I'm 6'1.

I just think it's wierd to have 27 in the front and 700 in the back. Like a circus bike, or a reverse chopper or something.

And yes, you should get a smaller chainring, at least in the beginning. Something like 46, 47, or 48 teeth.
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Old 01-26-06, 05:57 PM   #11
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yeah, if that's not a chicago one...meh. the chicago ones...i have one that i love to death. plus, what suzue hub is that? not a junior, please say not a junior...

smaller chainring...and what the hell kind of cranks are those?

and buy a front wheel in 700c, if only for looks. you oughta be able to get one for a song someplace.
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Old 01-26-06, 06:56 PM   #12
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It's got the 700 in the front because they couldn't find a 27inch prebuilt wheel with a track hum. I ran into the same problem on my conversion, and rode it for months. It really doesn't make a difference (well, I think it's like 8mm.) It did bother me enough (visually) that I eventually went out and bought a front wheel/tire/tube for around 60. It makes a little bit of a difference, but mainly in looks. Id say go for it, as the back wheel alone would cost 70-80 in a store, and the frame looks nice.
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Old 01-26-06, 07:00 PM   #13
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Do it ... convert that into a worthwhile machine.

I am partial to steel frames, mismatched wheels, and all things on the cheap
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Old 01-26-06, 09:23 PM   #14
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i had a panasonic-made, japanese schwinn le tour. it said "schwinn approved" and "made in japan" on the headtube badge. it originally came with 27"s, but i used 700's with no problem.

only weird thing is that it had a proprietary schwinn stem with an "S" on it. sheldon brown's website has more info. . . . so if you get it, you're pretty much stuck with that stem. . .
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Old 01-27-06, 08:58 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r-dub
and 52x18 on a 32mm tire is something like 78 gear inches. That's huge for 'round town riding. Especially brakeless.
BS. You can (and probably should) throw a brake on if need be, but 52 is a perfectly manageable ring size. You can always get a bigger cog if you need to gear down.
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Old 01-27-06, 01:32 PM   #16
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BS. You can (and probably should) throw a brake on if need be, but 52 is a perfectly manageable ring size. You can always get a bigger cog if you need to gear down.
I'm not saying that there's anything specifically wrong with the 52, but I would highly recommend against pushing 78 inches on 32mm tires, and definitely putting a brake on if you're doing it. The wider and lower pressure the tires, the harder to start a skid/skip. Compounded by difficulty skidding high gears. Even with a twenty in the back the lowest you'll get is 70 inches. A smaller chainring (which for that crank can probably be had pretty cheap or free) would give much more versatility.
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Old 01-27-06, 04:20 PM   #17
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You do not need less than 70 inches in a fix ... is very very low climbing gear.

If you need anything lower than that, the taco man should stay with his gears for a little longer till he gets a wee bit stronger
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Old 01-27-06, 04:24 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r-dub
and 52x18 on a 32mm tire is something like 78 gear inches. That's huge for 'round town riding. Especially brakeless.

Depending on terrain thats not huge at all. Try 92" [14tx49t+170cm].
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Old 01-27-06, 06:29 PM   #19
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Well hmm, my main ride will be a commute to school and there are only two big hills on that ride. I might not have to change the crank.
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Old 01-27-06, 06:42 PM   #20
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52x18 isn't bad, but with those tires, it might be different. what about crank length? anyhow, 52x18 on a bike with 27x1 1/4" tires wasn't bad. still, i'm doing 48x17 right now, and like it a whole lot better...i think that's a few inches down, right?
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