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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 08-20-08, 08:24 PM   #1
wallychamp
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Looking to Build/Convert For an NYC Winter

Well I currently ride a Specialized road bike and have no single speed experience but would love to give it a shot. The road bike forums mentioned the idea of converting to a single speed so I figured I would ask around for resources on winterizing a bike.

http://newyork.craigslist.org/lgi/bik/801967160.html

I think this frame looks gravy.. what do you think? Should I even be thinking about a road bike frame in NYC for the winter?
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Old 08-20-08, 08:38 PM   #2
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The interwebs say that frame is "Tange 900 CR-MO Double Butted Tubes"
which means decent but not great tubing. Sounds like another solid
but unremarkable Japanese bike from the 80s. I'd make it into
a winter beater in a minute. Spray the tubes with framesaver on the
inside. Consider going for a 3-speed internal hub if the rear spacing
is right or you can cold set it (i.e. bend the stays) (I have no idea if you can safely
cold set a lugged frame). Convert away or just buy it and ride it until
you need to fix something.

Last edited by Suttree; 08-20-08 at 08:41 PM.
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Old 08-20-08, 08:46 PM   #3
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Thanks for the help.. while I understood none of it I think my next question is- how can I learn more about converting/building my own bike.

I should probably have just asked in this thread the smartest options for a winter bike.

thanks tho
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Old 08-20-08, 09:05 PM   #4
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If I ever had to ride in the snow, slush, and ice again I'd get studded tires. And fenders with a lot of clearance.

EDIT: Frame-saver is stuff you can spray inside the tubes of a frame to reduce/prevent rust/corrosion. Important in the wet and salt. An internal hub like the ones you had on kids 3-speed bikes in the long ago will not freeze up when slush builds up on them. Slush build up on a normal drive train can leave you stuck in one gear.

Last edited by ken cummings; 08-20-08 at 09:09 PM. Reason: read the next to last post.
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Old 08-20-08, 09:57 PM   #5
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A single speed is hard to beat for low maintenance--
but yeah, I suggested a 3-speed hub because they are almost
as low maintenance but give you a few gears to play around with.
If you go single speed read this:
*RESOURCE THREAD: Single Speed and Fixed Gear* (read this first!)

If you get a 3-speed hub with a coaster brake (as opposed
to a 3-speed with no brake, just a freewheel) keep your
caliper brakes. A coaster brake is not enough stopping
power for the momentum an adult creates, unlike kids'
bikes with coaster brakes.
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Old 08-21-08, 12:06 PM   #6
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hmmm, i wouldn't pay $225 for a road bike that i'd be converting to Single speed. you can save a lot of money if you just buy a frame and then add the necessary parts. my rule of thumb is $100 or less for a frame, unless it's exceptional in some way. and yes i live in NYC where the prices are wayyy jacked up.
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Old 08-21-08, 12:11 PM   #7
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http://sheldonbrown.com/singlespeed.html
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Old 08-21-08, 12:38 PM   #8
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Get it, and hunt around on CL or fBay for a rear wheel to replace that one. Look for a flip-flop hub (track threading on one side, freewheel on the other) or just a track hub (you can just thread a BMX freewheel right onto that b!tch).
A track hub or flip-flop hub will be narrower than the road hub, so you can either get spacers to make up the difference or just tighten it in there anyway. With a steel frame like that one, it's no big deal to bend the rear triangle inward a little to accommodate a narrower hub.
Might as well get a new front wheel, too, just because. You need something like this: http://bikeisland.com/cgi-bin/BKTK_S...ils&ProdID=960
And then get a regular old Shimano freewheel, maybe 20 bucks, and you're done.
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