Yes yes, do a search. Been there, done that, got confused, worked out the answers and now ... dammit, I'm still dithering (it's called 'old cyclists's syndrome').
My old Europa still wears her original, 80's vintage, Ofmega bottom bracket and crankset. She's due for a new chainring and chain, having chopped the last chain out in 600km , and seeing I'm slowly doing her up, now's the time to give her a new drive train - bb, crankset, decent chain, cog.
I currently run 42x16 which equates to 70 gear inches which suits me nicely thank you very much ... except I can't climb the monster hill I face on the way home from work. Basically, I ride her on the flats and in rolling country and, being an aging coward, take the geared bike if tackling 'the hill'.
I'm 52, I ride fixed because I like it, not because it fits in with some fashion mindset - when you're overweight, aging and wear kakhi shorts and t-shirts, fashion isn't a driving force, believe me (you'll all get there one day I promise, might as well throw yourselves under a truck now).
I don't need track bits but am willing to fit them if they do the job. I'm no great powerhouse but at 105kg with thumping great meaty thighs and calves, I'm no weakling either.
So, it's time to buy new bits.
First step, have a chat with my long suffering lbs. The poor bloke nearly died as I came in with what probably appeared like yet another weird request. It turns out he knows nothing about fixed, is fascinated that anyone would actually want to do that to themselves but is quite happy to help me make my dreams come true. Seriously, he's a good mechanic and good bloke, just knows stuff all about fixed gear bikes. If I can go to him with a parts list, he can make it happen.
You need to remember that this is Australia - if it's not in the warehouses, and precious little is when you move away from the roadie mindset, it's going to be expensive ... or impossible ... or both. Importing from the US at the moment is just silly unfortunately. One of his suppliers though, does carry Sugino bits.
I thought: "I know that name, they talk about it on the BIke Forums".
So I did a search ... and fired up the Sugino website.
Now I'm still confused ... or dithering ... or both.
The common consensus seems to be that the Sugino RD is fine for the streets ... but the Sugino website claims a 45mm chainline, not the 42mm I need (I did the measurements and yes, my wheel is set up for 42). The consensus also seems to be that this isn't a big issue. I'm also confused by the Sugino website as to what is what. Of the lot of them on their Singlespeed page, I like the look of the 'Standerd' best, which appears to have an RD2 crankset ... which isn't the way things are referred to on this forum. Can anyone clarify this?
Any additional thoughts on the misaligned chainline? 45 vs 42?
Is there any point is looking at different bottom brackets to give me the 42? (basically, I don't know how much variation there is in bb widths)
Gearing. I'm happy with my current 42x16 which gives me 70 gear inches. I had hoped to go to a larger chain ring (and larger cog) for reduced wear but a check of the gear charts tells me I'm not going to get it with larger rings, just numbers either side of it 46x18 for 68" or 48x18 for 71". IT's been so long since I fiddled with gearing that I can't even remember what those sorts of differences mean and suspect it's just 'numbers', not real ... but am I right? This isn't helped by noting that Sugino don't do a 42 tooth ring so if using their products, I can't stick with what I've got.
Maybe Sugino isn't the way to go? I'd hoped to go to my lbs with a list of specific parts, but at this rate I'm going to be restriced to digging through his catalogues. Any other products I should be looking for? Aussie input would be good here, what the hell IS available in this country?
I can climb pretty much anything I face EXCEPT that rotten hill (Flagstaff Hill for those of you who know Adelaide).
It never looks as bad on the screen as it feels when you ride it. The dips in the graph don't actually exist, that's how it came from Bikely - my geared bike runs a 26 front and a 32 rear to get me up that and at the end of a day in the office, I need it.
This raises the spectre of fitting a super large cog on the flip side of my wheel for hill climbing ... which sounds fine on paper but who stops the bottom of a hill, digs out the spanner and flips their wheel? Seriously, does anyone here bother? Or do you just climb off and walk?
Crank length. Most seem to agree that shorter is better on fixed gears. I'm thinking of 170mm at the moment. Any proponents for less? It'll depend a bit on what I can get locally.
Soooooo, we're looking at Sugino RD with a bodgy chainline and 170mm (or less cranks) and probably different gearing from what I'm used to. It kinda makes buying a new chainring and re-packing the twenty year old bottom bracket seem like a good option.
At least chains and cogs are easy ... track is popular here so 1/8 dura ace cogs are as common as muck and good quality chains will be available if I look for them. Maybe I should just take my bike to a track shop and be done with it.
Yes, I know I've rambled a bit. I'd like to upgrade the old girl but it's looking like more effort than gain at the moment. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated, especially if you live in Adelaide and can point me to a shop that actually understands what I'm trying to do.