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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 04-15-11, 01:47 PM   #1
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Complete vs piecing together

I've been looking around, trying to toss together a bike, to start out on.
it seems it's cheaper to just get a complete now.. then frame, wheels, components, etc. basically it seems all the bikes are the same with different labels on them.

for example, this dude is selling a 09 se lager, chromoly frame, not the cheapo steel ones. for about 250. comes with upgraded back wheel. new seat post, chain, they have the alex rims which seem ok, bullhorns which i like personally and i don't mind the color.

The frame is the same as a Fuji track, Dawes SST, etc.. Fuji owns SE, so they are all pretty much the same bike, with different labels slapped on them.

question is, should I just get it, and upgrade all the components as i go? lastly
getting a new frame, then selling the lager as a complete bike. at least it gets me
riding a bike again, and it's not a complete pile of dung? will i get rocks thrown
at me in dark allies cause i am not rocking a 1000.00 dollar bike?
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Old 04-15-11, 01:59 PM   #2
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I just got my first fg/ss bike last December. It was my first new bike in 10 years

Now that I've ridden it for a while and looked at a lot of other people's bikes, I've sorta got a new build forming in my mind.

If you get a complete bike with a pretty solid frame, you can mix and match components for a while until you settle on stuff that you like. Then in the future if you decide you want a new frame, you'll already have some nice components to put on it.

Looking back I wish I had just bought something used, because I already find myself staring longingly at new framesets..

Ride other people's bikes in the meantime too
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Old 04-15-11, 02:08 PM   #3
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A-la-carte and/or buying complete and swapping parts always cost more than buying complete.

Buy a quality complete then replace parts to solve specific problems (e.g. stem too short, saddle is uncomfortable) to save the most money.

Also, you have to mentally distinguish between a functional bike and a project bike that has to be just perfect. Project bikes cost a lot of money.
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Old 04-15-11, 02:12 PM   #4
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Yeah it's ruff, the kids, who feel they OWN the fixed gear scene might talk **** cause i am not rocking velocity wheels color coded to my frame and a brooks saddle. I honestly hate those wheels cause i see those style wheels on LBS 400 dollar hi ten frame budget specials. there are so many choices.. I used to skate for years, was sponsored by local skate shops, had friends I skated with regularly on 411 videos. I knew when some wack kid rolled up on some nash board from k-mart.. I just don't want to be that guy..

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Old 04-15-11, 03:25 PM   #5
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so for starters any chromoly frame will do? fuji track, se lager, etc?
I don't mind dumping the money into it, but over a period of time, rather than a grand
all at once.. just want something acceptable for now, and something that won't get me
beat up in ally.
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Old 04-15-11, 03:33 PM   #6
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will i get rocks thrown at me in dark allies cause i am not rocking a 1000.00 dollar bike?
i actually think the opposite is true, at least in certain places near me

How old are you? **** the haters and just ride better. Get a complete and work up to a project bike.
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Old 04-15-11, 03:48 PM   #7
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the ripe ol' age of 30. "Get a complete and work up to a project bike"
so as long as it's chromoly, not hi-ten. any re-branded fuji frame (SE) will do?
just about to pull the trigger on lager @ 250, best I could find for the price, with a few upgrades. at least to get started.
Would it be a pain in the arse to remove the branding underneath the clear-coat?

Last edited by botched; 04-15-11 at 04:32 PM.
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Old 04-16-11, 01:21 PM   #8
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so a fuji track, se lager, Dawes SST, kilo tt.. decent to start out on? just want to stay away from a hi ten frame? i am also trying to keep re-sale value in mind, as i would probably just sell it, and upgrade to something a little more fancy, if i ride enough that is.. it's a good feeling being outside riding a bike, not sitting behind a computer at work, all day long.
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Old 04-16-11, 01:45 PM   #9
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The Kilo TT is the best frame of those you listed. It is a great frame for a good price and should hold you over for awhile before you "need" to upgrade.
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Old 04-16-11, 05:44 PM   #10
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The Kilo TT is the best frame of those you listed. It is a great frame for a good price and should hold you over for awhile before you "need" to upgrade.
Really? Hows it a better frame?, they look the same quality to me, plus the geometry seems more relaxed on the lager.

250.OO SE LAGER "SE Lager Single Speed Frameset features 100% chromoly construction with a triple-butted chromoly fork"
359.00 Kilo TT "Butted Chromoly Steel, Butted Steel Track Fork" + TAX
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Old 04-16-11, 05:46 PM   #11
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A Kilo TT is a better frame than a Lager any way you'd like to slice it. yummy never said it was less expensive.
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Old 04-16-11, 05:54 PM   #12
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I bought a complete bike (2010 Madison for $330 shipped) and took it completely apart, sold off the parts I didn't want, which covered about 66% of the purchase price, and will be be building up exactly what I want, with nice components for under $500. I guess it's another way to go.

Without a doubt, you get more for your money buying complete, especially when it's substantially discounted, which is hard to find buying only components. But make sure you sell the sell the stuff you don't want to recoup some of your investment.
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Old 04-16-11, 06:14 PM   #13
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Let me guess you ride a kilo? hard to get an unbiased opinion, there no way it's better, how and why.
guess the fuji track is worse than the kilo too?
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Old 04-16-11, 07:27 PM   #14
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Dude you came here and asked for opinions. What did you expect? The paper specs give you the most unbiased opinion there is - it plainly states that the Kilo is made of "nicer" tubing. Yes, they're both 4130 steel, but the Kilo is made of butted "name brand" steel (Reynolds 520).

From my experience, the Kilo is a nicer frame. I rode a Motobecane Track for 9 months. It is the same frame as the Fuji Track. I then rode a Kilo for 3 months. The Kilo is a nicer, lighter, and a more "solid-feeling" frame. Geometry differences aside (and the geometries are very different between the two frames, so that's another thing to consider), the Kilo will win my affections over the Track any day.

If you don't want to spend the extra $110, then that's fine... it's your money and no one is forcing you to. I didn't, and I wish I had ponied up my meager college boy dollars to get a nicer frame the first time around.
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Old 04-16-11, 07:56 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botched View Post
I knew when some wack kid rolled up on some nash board from k-mart.. I just don't want to be that guy..
Quote:
Originally Posted by botched View Post
will i get rocks thrown
at me in dark allies cause i am not rocking a 1000.00 dollar bike?
Quote:
Originally Posted by botched View Post
just want something acceptable for now, and something that won't get me
beat up in ally.
Quote:
Originally Posted by botched View Post
Let me guess you ride a kilo? hard to get an unbiased opinion, there no way it's better, how and why.
guess the fuji track is worse than the kilo too?
You're getting an opinion from someone with lots of experience. If you're looking for a bike that will let you feel validated just come out and say it.

This forum seems to be obsessed with Kilos and I never really hear people hate on them. I don't have experience with them but they seem to be a good all around bike for the price according to everyone else.
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Old 04-16-11, 08:06 PM   #16
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You're getting an opinion from someone with lots of experience. If you're looking for a bike that will let you feel validated just come out and say it.

This forum seems to be obsessed with Kilos and I never really hear people hate on them. I don't have experience with them but they seem to be a good all around bike for the price according to everyone else.
yeah, you obviously came here so you could here us justify your purchase. if you want to buy it, cool. you came here for opinions and you got them.

a lager for 250's not amazing. its not a ripoff either though.
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Old 04-16-11, 10:31 PM   #17
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yeah, you obviously came here so you could here us justify your purchase. if you want to buy it, cool. you came here for opinions and you got them.
Came here to get answers to questions. I have not bought anything yet. more like (cost-justifying) spending 150.00 more dollars?
If cost was not an issue, I would not even be considering any of the bikes mentioned in this thread.
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Old 04-16-11, 10:40 PM   #18
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The frame is the same as a Fuji track, Dawes SST, etc.. Fuji owns SE, so they are all pretty much the same bike, with different labels slapped on them.

question is, should I just get it, and upgrade all the components as i go? lastly
getting a new frame, then selling the lager as a complete bike. at least it gets me
riding a bike again, and it's not a complete pile of dung? will i get rocks thrown
at me in dark allies cause i am not rocking a 1000.00 dollar bike?
I wouldn't worry about street credit, it will get you no where but in a larger deficit. Find a bike, find a deal, something that will ride, like a few of the first posts suggested, just ride.

EDIT: I only mention street credit because after several posts it seems you are concerned with that.

Get your bike, find out through experience what you don't like about it, upgrade.

Last edited by sulr; 04-16-11 at 10:45 PM.
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Old 04-17-11, 02:29 AM   #19
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If you know *exactly* what you want, and why you want it, then build up a bike as you'll be happier with it. If you aren't sure of *exactly* what you want buy an off the peg bike and replace parts if you find it necessary. Chances are you'll be happy with any quality off the peg model.
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Old 04-17-11, 07:32 AM   #20
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If you don't have $110 to spare (or if you just plain like the SE more), get the SE. It's not the best bike... but it'll work plenty fine for you until you're ready to upgrade. You seem pretty set on getting it anyways.

If you end up loving the bike, who cares what other people think? I love my Motobecane Track even though I made it look like cotton candy, I love the Kilo even though it's not technically mine, and I love my TET. All solid bikes for what I have put into them. But, as I said before, the Kilo is the best frame for the money that you originally listed in post #8.

Pro-tip: Don't be naive and think that your bike will hold its value for when you want to resell it.

Last edited by yummygooey; 04-17-11 at 07:37 AM.
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Old 04-19-11, 03:04 PM   #21
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Yeah, I've decided to get something legit to start out with, instead of getting crap..
I have about 600.00 for a decent frame. I tried the kilo and didn't like it. i guess that's more of an aggressive geometry? toe overlap was a little annoying, maybe i could adjust to it. the ride was a little more bumpy and twitchy to me than my friends bike, not sure what it was, but it wasn't cheap.
Looking for more of a relaxed frame, any suggestions?
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Old 04-19-11, 06:53 PM   #22
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I tend to build up a frame for a few reasons.

I get the components I want. I like to build up frames (it really is fun!). I don't have many other expenses at the moment, which makes money not so much of an object. (it is nice to have a job)
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Old 04-19-11, 07:10 PM   #23
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^^^ That way the bike is truly your own.
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