Yesterday, while walking home from the store, I walked past an orange bike. Since I'm now in the habit of checking to see if the bike has somewhat horizontal drops because I want a SS/FG bike, I stopped and looked. It had horizontal, or close to, dropouts, though I don't know much about their usefulness for conversion. I have a closeup of the dropouts if it would help to see.
I'm basically looking for a little information on the frame; I'll start off by telling you what I know.
1. Made by a company called Columbia, from Massachusetts. A quick search revealed that they make cheap ass bikes.
2. Cranks are cheap looking by a French company called Nervar. I was excited for a second, thinking that France= good stuff, but looking at the quality I may have jumped the gun. The inner of the two chainrings is held on by one nub off the crank. (Edit- research tells me this is a one piece crank)
3. Brakes are real cheapy looking stamped with "Dia-Comp"
4. Front rim is an Alex something or other. Rear Rim fell apart as I was taking it out, all the bearing dropped out. I have everything.
4. The parts that holds the handle bars (stem, headset) look hollow, like one piece of metal rounded and folded over.
I have a few questions. Firstly, what's the absolute cheapest way to get this thing up and running. It was free, so anything I can reuse, I'd like to, keeping the project price here waaaay, waaaay down. I'm up for replacing things in the future, but seeing as this bike might be complete crap, there's no point in throwing great things on it, it can be my beater.
Can I reuse the rear hub and wheel? It not has a cassette on it, and besides being friggin filthy, along with the rest of the bike, is not in horrible condition.
Speaking of filthy, everything on the bike is ridiculously dirty. The BB is packed with dirt and crud, and sounds like a grinder, though it turns relatively smoothly. I'd imagine my cheap route would have me reusing the cranks and BB, so I need to flush the dirt out of there and repack it with grease. How do I do it? Any links or resources?
I may show a complete misunderstanding, but I'm new to this. Im relatively handy, but my limits on this project are monetary, not mental. I want to spend under $100, but keeping it under $75 or 50 would be preferable. I basically just want a singlespeed beater with the option of fixed at some point.