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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 02-20-07, 11:37 AM   #1
kylednf
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Raleigh Grand Prix

i got a '76 raleigh grand prix about two weeks ago. im doing my first conversion. what are some problems i might have with converting this specific bike? I heard that raleighs were harder to convert than most bikes.
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Old 02-20-07, 11:47 AM   #2
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They made a lot of their own components, so you'll have to hold onto everything. Ie., don't try to replace the headset, keep the old one, just clean it up and polish it with chainbright. Really, as long as the frame and components aren't trashed, it should make a nice, easy conversion. As I recall, Raleigh wasn't using braze-on shifter bosses yet and the dropouts are a good shape for chain-tugs and whatnot. Sheldon links to a Raleigh history site that should have the '76 catalogue if you want to see it in its original (entry-level) spleandor.
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Old 02-20-07, 01:17 PM   #3
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The threading on Raleigh BB and headsets is only used by Raleigh. Workarounds can be expensive.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/raleigh26.html
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Old 02-20-07, 01:26 PM   #4
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that frame is made for 27" wheels. so if you're going to run a brake with 700c wheels, you'll need a long reach caliper. i was going to build one into a single speed for a friend and found that i was going to need some SUUUPER long reach calipers to make it work with 700c wheels... so now it's hanging from a nail in my garage. i'm thinking canti mounts might find they're way onto it and make it into a single speed 'cross bike some day. or it might find itself on ebay.

Last edited by isotopesope; 02-20-07 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 02-20-07, 06:03 PM   #5
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I run that exact frame, '76 Grand Prix. Not a bad frame at all, especially if you got it for a good price. But yeah, like everyone else said, aside from the headset it should be problem free so just keep the headset on there. Here's some pics of my bike with 700c wheels, the advantage is there's plenty of fender clearance if you're into that sort of thing. http://velospace.org/node/2068 I've had a lot of fun with it.

Keep in mind the paint is going to chip super easy too, old European frames are like that...
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Old 02-20-07, 07:03 PM   #6
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i've done two of these frames. the stock crankset on both was a Sakae with the main ring (52) swaged on. The spacing on mine was either 126 or 120 and with the crankset normal track hubs worked with a perfect chainline. really smooth. the bottom brackets were fine on both, but the spindle length was a little odd. i also used a shimano crank with the ring on the inside for an ok chainline. i'd recomend using the stock cranks if you have them though considering the frame doesn't warrent too much upgrading.

the 1978 used used 700c no problem with normal brakes. the other was older so i think the reach was longer. can't say for sure though cause i didn't try it with a modern caliper.
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Old 02-20-07, 07:17 PM   #7
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Oh man, A Raleight Grand Prix! Congratulations! That was one of the hottest rides around during the '70s bike boom. I'm glad you found one.

All the advice here is good. I suspect you'll wind up with a top-notch fixie conversion.
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Old 02-21-07, 02:40 AM   #8
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I rebuilt one of these last summer. Originally I planned on making it my first fixy, but decided that since the frame was too large for me this wouldn't be wise. Still use it as a 10 speed. The bottom bracket is definitely the Raleigh threading as the poster earlier said. The spindle is also a slightly different size than what is used today, so you would have to replace the whole bb or none. I would suggest just going to your lbs and having them put in a new bb cartridge, because cottered cranks are a pain. I had to get new pins, but the pins were different than what is available now, so I also had to grind the new ones down to the right shape.
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Old 02-21-07, 05:47 AM   #9
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thanks for all the help. ill post again when its done!
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Old 02-21-07, 10:06 AM   #10
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Raleigh Grand Prix

My Raleigh GP http://www.fixedgeargallery.com/2007/jan/JackLevavi.htm
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Old 04-29-07, 05:33 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nolucker
I have been lucky enough to pick up a Raleigh GP at the side of the road today - it has put an end to all my ebaying (for now). I would love to know what has been done to your bike - especially bottom bracket. My bike will have the Raleigh 26TPI threading so I am trying to get as many ideas as I can before I go into the LBS. What was replaced and what was installed? Also ver interested to know about the hubs used and whether the dropouts were filed to accomodate. If you could find out for me or put me in touch with the mechanic, would be great.
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Old 04-29-07, 05:39 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andre nickatina
I run that exact frame, '76 Grand Prix. Not a bad frame at all, especially if you got it for a good price. But yeah, like everyone else said, aside from the headset it should be problem free so just keep the headset on there. Here's some pics of my bike with 700c wheels, the advantage is there's plenty of fender clearance if you're into that sort of thing. http://velospace.org/node/2068 I've had a lot of fun with it..
I have been lucky enough to pick up a Raleigh Grand Prix at the side of the road today it was going to the council dumpster - so yes the price was right! - it has put an end to all my ebaying (for now). I would love to know what has been done to your bike - especially bottom bracket. My bike will has the Raleigh 26TPI threading so I am trying to get as many ideas as I can before I go into the LBS. I would like to take out the original cottered cranks and put in something simple. What was installed on yours? Also very interested to know about the hubs used - did you file out your dropouts to accomodate them.

I'm trying not to get scared off this farme by the threading - I was so excited to find this frame I would love to build my first single speed (well, with the help of a good mechanic). Any technical details on your conversion would be very very helpful.
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Old 04-29-07, 07:45 AM   #13
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I just bought one yesterday, to do my first conversion to! But mine was just the frame. What kind of rear hub is needed to make this work?
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Old 04-29-07, 09:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hopetoditchcar
I just bought one yesterday, to do my first conversion to! But mine was just the frame. What kind of rear hub is needed to make this work?
You'll need a track hub which is spaced the same as the rear dropouts on your frame. It's most likely 126mm.
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Old 04-29-07, 11:19 AM   #15
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I had no idea how to deal with the Raleigh bb on my '72 Grand Prix with cottered cranks, but called Bikeworks here in NYC, and they had a new, modern bb with a square-tapered spindle that worked fine. I'd recommend just phoning them and asking what kind of bb to use--they know this stuff inside and out, and they won't be guarded about sharing with you.

The bb clearance on these lends itself to pedal strike. I highly advise getting 165mm cranks.

And either 27" or 700c wheels will work fine. You'll just more 'gaps' between frame and wheels. Seems like a lot of people here have aesthetic issues with clearances greater than 1mm between frame and tires.

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Old 04-29-07, 12:10 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziemas
You'll need a track hub which is spaced the same as the rear dropouts on your frame. It's most likely 126mm.
On a '76? I'm guessing 120mm. It's a 5-speed rear, right? (My first "10-speed" was a brand new Raleigh GP, 1973.)
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Old 04-29-07, 01:03 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by dwainedibbly
On a '76? I'm guessing 120mm. It's a 5-speed rear, right? (My first "10-speed" was a brand new Raleigh GP, 1973.)
IIRQ the 1975 Grand Prix rotting in my garage is 126mm, but I might be mistaken. It was 10 speed though.

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Old 04-29-07, 03:17 PM   #18
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I roll with a 69 Grand prix. I have no advice to offer, but I will say that you're going to love it.
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Old 04-29-07, 03:27 PM   #19
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I roll with a 69 Grand prix. I have no advice to offer, but I will say that you're going to love it.
The 60s Grand Prixs are much nicer than the 70s.
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Old 04-30-07, 04:27 AM   #20
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I am not sure what year my frame is, can I just measure to see what the width is in the rear? Where are the measurements taken from the inside, center to center, outer? Can I post pics and you all might be able to tell me the year the frame is? The gear selector is on the handle bar stem if that helps. Also what does it mean to have a fully lugged frame?
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Old 04-30-07, 04:34 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hopetoditchcar
I am not sure what year my frame is, can I just measure to see what the width is in the rear? Where are the measurements taken from the inside, center to center, outer? Can I post pics and you all might be able to tell me the year the frame is? The gear selector is on the handle bar stem if that helps. Also what does it mean to have a fully lugged frame?
Post photos and the serial number in the Classic and Vintage section of BikeForums for info on your frame.
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