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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 10-12-06, 10:53 PM   #1
aj7v
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starting my conversion: basics

like the title says, im planning on starting my conversion soon (SS). what are some things to look out for. what products do you recommend. i want to paint my frame, should i do that before or after i get parts? what should i look for in a saddle/wheels...info like this would be great...thnx
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Old 10-12-06, 11:05 PM   #2
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fixed / ss road bikes: what to look for
- bikes that use standard, easily-scrounged parts are best-- as opposed to odd bottom bracket or post sizes
- the higher the bottom bracket shell, the better.
- long "horizontal" dropouts.
- avoid stamped dropouts when possible. solid, forged = good.
- "three piece" aluminum cranks, preferably 170mm or less, with removable chainrings (some 70s designs have the large ring integrated)
- functional headset (though a rough one might just need grease and new bearings)
- aluminum road bars: ripe for flip-n-chop bullhorns!
- at least one salvagable brake and lever.
- don't underestimate the importance of choosing the right SIZE frame.

wheels:
- 700c clinchers = more tire options
- aluminum beats steel
- sealed bearings "r" awesome
- solid / bolt-on axles are ideal, but usually not essential
- get a mechanic to redish the rear wheel for a good chainline
- remove freewheel w/ chainwhip
- loctite fixed cog and bottom bracket lockring OR
- simply thread on a BMX freewheel....
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Old 10-13-06, 12:03 AM   #3
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You forgot the most important one:
http://www.sheldonbrown.com
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Sintesi Conversion Serotta Track
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Old 10-13-06, 05:24 AM   #4
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Here's my first. love it, ride it to and from work every day in ny.
And here's a link to a way to long description of how it went (perfect for workplace internet diversion):

http://www.jaycokingpin.com/singlefix.pdf
Attached Images
File Type: jpg reservoir.web.jpg (43.5 KB, 17 views)
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Old 10-13-06, 05:42 AM   #5
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Also: cottered cranks suck to deal with unless it is a super-beater. Then just leave them on.
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Old 10-13-06, 10:04 AM   #6
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Avoidnot impossible, but just easier and better options)

27" if you want to go upgrade to 700C's
ANYTHING FRENCH, DUTCH, or Belgium
Vertical dropouts
knackered headsets and/or bottom brackets
One piece cranks
cotter cranks
stuck seat posts
stuck stems

other notes:

Just because it is Italian named
1. doesn't mean it was made in Italy
2. even if it were made in Italy, that it is not a POS

read the sticky on this subject
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Old 10-13-06, 10:09 AM   #7
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Spend your money wisely:

dropping $ on a paint job

vs.

buying a better frame to start with
better drive train
wheels

????
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Old 10-13-06, 11:45 AM   #8
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n00b question, but how do i tell if my cranks are 3 piece or integrated?
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Old 10-13-06, 12:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trashalicious
n00b question, but how do i tell if my cranks are ... integrated?
Cottered Cranks:

That hole that runs perpendicular to the spindle hole is the giveaway. It is plugged with a metal peg called a cotter. Hence the name.

one-piece (ashtabula) crank:

If it doesn't look like you can remove the crank from the BB without a saw, it's a one-piece. Easy to deal with, but generally crappy.
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Old 10-13-06, 12:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trashalicious
n00b question, but how do i tell if my cranks are 3 piece or integrated?
If you have 3 piece cranks, then the bottom bracket spindle, drive side crank arm(with the spider to attach to a chainring) and non-drive side crank arm will be separate pieces you have to attach to one another. If you have a one piece crankset, then the drive side and non-drive side cranks, and BB spindle will be the same piece of metal. If you have a crankset with an integrated chainring then it can be either of the two designs (I think there are one piece cranks with integrated chainrings, anyway), only a chainring will be permanently attached to the drive side crank arm.
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