Hello all. Let me preface this by saying that I have received some excellent advice from my few posts and a lot of searching/reading. Thank you.
In the recent past, I have thought about converting my Gary Fisher mountain bike to a single speed, but decided to keep it geared and use it as hybrid type bike (road tires, rigid fork, etc.). I have purchased (and canceled) an order on a Scattante Americano. I decided I was better off paying slightly more for something from a local LBS (perhaps a Rush Hour?) and getting fitted properly. That will come this fall.
Now, I realized that I have a Royce Union Cactus Ridge 18 speed mountain bike at my parents house that has been sitting there unused for quite some time. The bike never got used much - I started driving and it just hung on the wall. It is in pretty good shape. I know these are of lower quality (purchased at Dicks or Sports Authority). However, it is FREE and the proper size for me (about 18-19"). I believe the frame is steel, as Royce Union didn't start making aluminum frames until later and those were of questionable quality.
I figure I could put together a cheap single speed conversion, maybe rattle can the frame, throw on some new (but cheap) tires and have a decent beater/crappy weather ride for around town or light trails. I believe it has a cassette hub. I am thinking I could use something like the Sette single speed conversion kit, Sette tensioner, new chain, new tires, and new front brake for under $75. In this scenario, would I need to redish the rear wheel?
The bike isn't in front of me and I won't be able to grab it until later this week, but I was able to grab a photo off the Internet.
If I am crazy to put about $75 into the bike, tell me. If my thinking is way off, tell me. I like projects, but I also don't want anymore than about $75 going into the bike.