So this is my first attempt at a conversion for a commuter/everyday bike. This is my dad's old Peugeot UO8 that he bought in 1972, so it has a lot of sentimental value. Hence, even though it's not the best frame, it's my favorite.
The first step was swapping out the wheels. Unfortunately, the original normandy hubs were french threaded, so I swapped them out for a 27" Araya wheelset I picked up from a friend. I added a single speed 16T freewheel and I was good to go. I also swapped in a 1/8" chain and saved the original chain with the old freewheel.
The original bike (from my folks' basement):
I picked up an old bianchi drop bar for the chop and flip. I want to save all the original parts off the bike, so chopping the old one up wasn't an option. The bianchi was about .4mm too large at 25.4, but I managed to get it into the stem with just a bit of work.
Of course, after the chop (and once the brake levers came in) - I realized there was no way they were going to fit into the curved section of the bar. So, I picked up a couple of copper pipe reducers which fit *perfectly* into the bars (read, with a bit of work). I JB-welded them in. I was a bit concerned about the strength of the bar at this point, but really the only stress on the very end of the bar is from braking. When I'm riding, my hands are behind the joint. Regardless, I have no doubt it will hold up. See the in progress pictures below...
And the final result (for now). This is my everyday commuter, hence the light and f/r brakes (original mafac center pulls)
STILL TO DO:
I really want to find a replacement spindle for the BB. It currently has cottered cranks (with mangled pins) Unfortunately, the BB is french-threaded, so it's not as easy as just swapping the whole thing. B/c I have thin-walled cups, I really need an Italian spindle (or so says Sheldon) that was designed for a 70mm BB (mine is 68, but because of the cups...). Once I get a square taper spindle, I'll pick up some new cranks, pedals, and a single 42T chainring. Unfortunately, this means running on a 40T chainring up front which is a little too low for my tastes (not a hilly city - Washington, DC).
I'm open for any suggestions, although I'm pretty happy with it right now (other than the cranks/chainring).