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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 01-27-11, 02:04 AM   #1
mikey84
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Newb's bike project. Help, advice and suggestion wanted.

i currently have a FG that i'm trying to convert into a SS. I don't know too much about bikes, but I definitely would like to do this all on my own as a project. Hopefully I can get some help from you guys.

My bike has a drop bar, no brakes (although it has a mount on the fork and the seat stay). It doesn't have cable stops.

1. Brake levers. I think I want to run Aero brake levers. Anyone has any suggestions which one I should get? I saw a Cane Creek Drop V lever set that seems pretty cool. Is that good? Is there anything else I should consider?

2. Brake cable stops. What do I do since I don't have any? I think I read somewhere about people drilling them... I'm kind of hesitant about drilling. Suggestions?

3. Brakes. I think I'm pretty set on the Tektro R538. Unless someone has a better idea.

4. I need to build a back wheel. I think I want to run Deep-V's or B-43's (i'm a big dude). I need a 135mm back hub suggestion. oh yeah, i want to build it. any good wheel building guides out there? i have access to a truing stand, and most of the tools.

Any help, suggestion and comments would be great! Thanks!
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Old 01-27-11, 02:10 AM   #2
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2. Brake cable stops. What do I do since I don't have any? I think I read somewhere about people drilling them... I'm kind of hesitant about drilling. Suggestions?


you can get ones that mount around the tubes like a computer mount, use these instead of drilling holes in your tubes, that way if you decide to remove them later, you wont have holes everywhere and also wont be weakening your frame
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Old 01-27-11, 02:22 AM   #3
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Post a pic of your bike so we know what we are dealing with.
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Old 01-27-11, 02:57 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by mikey84 View Post
i currently have a FG that i'm trying to convert into a SS. I don't know too much about bikes, but I definitely would like to do this all on my own as a project. Hopefully I can get some help from you guys.

My bike has a drop bar, no brakes (although it has a mount on the fork and the seat stay). It doesn't have cable stops.
Seat stay mounts aren't for the calipers you mention. Hopefully you have a brake bridge.
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2. Brake cable stops. What do I do since I don't have any? I think I read somewhere about people drilling them... I'm kind of hesitant about drilling. Suggestions?
If you're running a caliper in the back, I'd run full length cable housing. Grab 2 or 3 clip on guides for the top tube.
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Old 01-27-11, 10:16 AM   #5
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2. Brake cable stops. What do I do since I don't have any? I think I read somewhere about people drilling them... I'm kind of hesitant about drilling. Suggestions?

4. I need to build a back wheel. I think I want to run Deep-V's or B-43's (i'm a big dude). I need a 135mm back hub suggestion. oh yeah, i want to build it. any good wheel building guides out there?
Post some pictures of your bike. Some of the terminology you use is confusing and might not be correct. For example, there's no such thing as drilling cable stops. Cable guides/stops are brazed onto the frame to allow the cable to route a certain way. Maybe you meant drilling the frame to accept the brake calipers themselves?

Just an FYI, you don't need a new wheel to run your bike SS if it's already fixed gear. Even if your hub only has threading for fixed gear you can still thread on a single speed freewheel in place of your fixed cog.
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Old 01-27-11, 12:12 PM   #6
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1- Can't comment on this.

2- No cable guides can easily be solved with electric tape or "real products".

3- All brakes do basically the same thing. Those Tektro whatevers should be fine, like any dual-pivot side pull caliper.

4- Last I heard, b43s aren't available with machined sidewalls. Not sure if that has changed...
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Old 01-27-11, 02:43 PM   #7
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I would say just put a front brake on. In the end a back brake is going to do very little for you in stopping power compared to a front. Plus your bike will be less cluttered and a tad lighter.
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Old 01-27-11, 02:45 PM   #8
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Disregard the above post.
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Old 01-27-11, 03:15 PM   #9
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Regard the above post.



Running a front brake only on a single speed is only acceptable if you ride very slowly.
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Old 01-27-11, 03:18 PM   #10
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I don't know what a "drop V" lever set is but these Cane Creek SCR-5 levers are good. I've got them on my San Jose.

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Old 01-28-11, 01:56 AM   #11
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Regard the above post.



Running a front brake only on a single speed is only acceptable if you ride very slowly.
So what's up with the idea about only using the front brakes that Sheldon Brown had?
Or was he simply stating that the front brake is the most powerful ?
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Old 01-28-11, 07:36 AM   #12
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Or was he simply stating that the front brake is the most powerful ?
Bingo. Coincidentally, all of these guys agree that a rear brake is necessary. But what do they know?
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Old 01-28-11, 09:29 AM   #13
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So what's up with the idea about only using the front brakes that Sheldon Brown had?
Or was he simply stating that the front brake is the most powerful ?
Sheldon said that a rear brake on a fixed gear is unnecessary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheldon Brown
If you are going to use a flip-flop hub with a freewheel, you should have two brakes on the bicycle.
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Old 02-01-11, 07:52 PM   #14
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Hi guys!
Thanks for all the info and sorry about the delay. I've been out of town. Anyhow, here is the photo I was able to get of my bike.
http://img211.imageshack.us/img211/7026/bikex.jpg

Some other stuff:

Yes, I want front and rear brakes since i'll be on the freewheel side of my bike a lot.

No, I don't want to drill because the frame is titanium. and just in case i want to go fixed full time in the future.

I'm getting a new back wheel because the hub my friend had been using is only 125mm wide and the frame's hub spacing is 135mm. And also I want to try Deep V's. Heard good things about them.
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Old 02-01-11, 08:02 PM   #15
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No, I don't want to drill because the frame is titanium. and just in case i want to go fixed full time in the future.

I'm getting a new back wheel because the hub my friend had been using is only 125mm wide and the frame's hub spacing is 135mm.
Your picture doesn't show whether your frame will accept brakes or not. It doesn't have cable guides (not a big deal), but I can't see whether or not it is drilled for brakes. It almost looks like there's a hole in your fork, but I can't tell for sure.

You can run brakes on a fixed gear. Or you can take them off if you want. Putting brakes on a bike doesn't jeopardize its ability to become fixed gear.

You can re-space your current hub out to 135mm to avoid getting a new wheel, unless your axle is too short. In that case you'd have to get a new axle.
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Old 02-02-11, 05:56 AM   #16
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1. Brake levers. I think I want to run Aero brake levers. Anyone has any suggestions which one I should get? I saw a Cane Creek Drop V lever set that seems pretty cool. Is that good? Is there anything else I should consider?



3. Brakes. I think I'm pretty set on the Tektro R538. Unless someone has a better idea.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bbattle View Post
I don't know what a "drop V" lever set is but these Cane Creek SCR-5 levers are good. I've got them on my San Jose.

V brake levers are not compatible with road calipers. They pull more cable than road calipers are designed for.
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Old 02-02-11, 09:23 AM   #17
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That's quite an expensive (looking) frame. If you don't know what you are doing, it wouldn't be a bad idea to have someone more experienced do the work for you.

1) Cane Creek SCR-5 or Tektro RL340 are the standard choices.

2) Use zip-ties or clip-on cable guides (like these) and run full housing. Cable stops are something else, which you don't need.

3) R538 should be fine. Before buying, you should measure the distance from the brake hole to the rim surface just to make sure the reach is correct. Different frames require different length brakes, and your frame looks short reach. See here for how to measure.

4) Sheldon Brown and Jobst Brandt got you covered on wheelbuilding. There are plenty of 135mm single speed hubs, if you want fixed as well Surly is a good choice. You can space out 120mm hubs (like the one you already have) to work, but that is a lot of space, and as a big guy, there's a good chance you might bend an axle.
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Old 02-02-11, 12:44 PM   #18
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...wiping coffee off my screen.

Spacing out a 120mm hub will give you more versatility in the long run.

Drilling ti shouldn't be too much of an issue---definitely understand the reluctance to take a bit to it---but a hole won't hold you back from going full-time fixed. Might feel safer with a pro doing the damage for a few dollars.
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Old 02-03-11, 07:41 PM   #19
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Spacing out a 120mm hub will give you more versatility in the long run.

Drilling ti shouldn't be too much of an issue---definitely understand the reluctance to take a bit to it---but a hole won't hold you back from going full-time fixed. Might feel safer with a pro doing the damage for a few dollars.

---

What kind of versatility would you get from it?
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