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  1. #1
    Senior Member word_nerd's Avatar
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    My first conversion - huffy to tuffy!

    Not sure if i'm completely through fiddling with it (especially the paint - i may redo it with better paint), but i'm pretty happy with my first ever single speed conversion. i pulled an old Huffy LeGrande 12 speed out of the trash. It was in pretty sorry shape, but i figured it was an excuse to give conversion a try. i tried to reuse as many parts as possible, to keep this on the cheap, but also in the name of recycling. After mangling the rear hub, after trying to get it apart and convert it, i broke down and bought a relatively cheap (around 50 bucks) rear wheel with a flip/flop hub (which came with a fixed cog) and a new 16T freewheel. I also invested in a new brake lever. Everything else is either original or taken from other bikes - special thanks to the BMX that a neighborhood kid abandoned from which i commandeered the chain ring.

    I re-upholstered the seat using some leftover faux leather vinyl to give it an old school look, though it's harder to do than i thought and consequently the material is not as tight as i would have liked it. oh well.

    overall i'm excited to ride it! Here are some before, during and after photos.

    124_2674.jpg124_2661.jpg124_2672.jpg100_3240.jpg100_3244.jpg100_3241.jpg
    1984 Puch Classic, best $5 i ever spent!

  2. #2
    Senior Member dbwoi's Avatar
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    Pretty nice, but something about the fork seems strange...

  3. #3
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    I wrote this in 2007. It still applies: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...r-Diving-Noobs

  4. #4
    Veteran Racer TejanoTrackie's Avatar
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    OP - Sounds like you qualify to post in this thread >>> http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ghlight=%24100
    What, Me Worry? - Alfred E. Neuman

    Quote Originally Posted by Dcv View Post
    I'd like to think i have as much money as brains.

  5. #5
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    I wrote this in 2007. It still applies:
    what you said in that thread doesn't apply at all.. this guy finished his build and it came out looking decent. he probably learned a lot and if he doesn't like the ride he's got the skills to build a nicer one next time
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  6. #6
    So tragically hip. mickey_'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frantik View Post
    what you said in that thread doesn't apply at all.. this guy finished his build and it came out looking decent. he probably learned a lot and if he doesn't like the ride he's got the skills to build a nicer one next time
    +1, I don't see what's wrong with saving the life of an old bike, even if it's not the nicest. He'll have just as much fun pounding around on his Huffy conversion as I do pounding around on my SE Premium Brew.
    Quote Originally Posted by johnnytheboy View Post
    that looks like doodies on the bars. and doodie smeared all over the frame. doodie bike.

  7. #7
    I like the bike kostal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    I wrote this in 2007. It still applies: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...r-Diving-Noobs
    I might build up a bike from scratch one day... thanks for the tip on the stock parts.

  8. #8
    Senior Member word_nerd's Avatar
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    thanks to those of you who have responded positively after carleton's rather rude and judgmental link. the reality is that even with all the mistakes and frustrations (there were a few), i'm more into biking than ever before! I didn't go looking for some vintage find. the bike showed up on the curb in my girlfriend's old neighborhood, so we grabbed it. i had doubts about its fixability, but the point was just to dive in and see what happened. i am in no position to spend hundreds of dollars on a new bike just to learn how to build it, and philosophically, i prefer to keep another usable machine out of the landfill. i posted the results here because i respect the opinions and insights of forum members. In the year i've been a member, it has felt like a cool biking community. i know that i often look to this forum for good ideas and inspiration and if someone out there saw this, perhaps they would be psyched up about trying it out too.
    1984 Puch Classic, best $5 i ever spent!

  9. #9
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by word_nerd View Post
    thanks to those of you who have responded positively after carleton's rather rude and judgmental link. the reality is that even with all the mistakes and frustrations (there were a few), i'm more into biking than ever before! I didn't go looking for some vintage find. the bike showed up on the curb in my girlfriend's old neighborhood, so we grabbed it. i had doubts about its fixability, but the point was just to dive in and see what happened. i am in no position to spend hundreds of dollars on a new bike just to learn how to build it, and philosophically, i prefer to keep another usable machine out of the landfill. i posted the results here because i respect the opinions and insights of forum members. In the year i've been a member, it has felt like a cool biking community. i know that i often look to this forum for good ideas and inspiration and if someone out there saw this, perhaps they would be psyched up about trying it out too.
    I (falsely) assumed that your purpose was to make a "sweet fixie", which is what 95% of these project are. I apologize for that. That post was written years ago and my tone in it was very condescending. But, that's how SSFG was back then. Lots of snark, hate, bashing, and NJS mania. "Aluminum?!! Ewww...". "Sloping top tube?! (I just threw up in my mouth a little.)" "HA HA! You have a modern bike!! LOL.". That's just how it was. I hated it. So, I went into the post with lots of venom.

    Whenever someone wanted a new bike, the first response would more often than not, be: "Do a conversion"...no matter what you use as a base bike, no matter how much it costs, no matter how long it took, no matter how much you knew (or didn't know) about bikes. It was stupid advice.

    I whole heartedly believe that a person can learn more by working on one's modern bike than learning how to build and maintain a vintage bike...which only trains one on vintage bikes. Restoring a '73 Super Beetle does not help me very much in understanding a New Beetle. There are better ways to learn.

    But, if your aim was to recycle, then mission accomplished. Good job (seriously). I can't fault you for that.
    Last edited by carleton; 06-02-11 at 10:15 AM.

  10. #10
    manwolf just dank's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    Restoring a '73 Super Beetle does not help me very much in understanding a New Beetle. There are better ways to learn.
    very well put
    http://www.pedalroom.com/members/just_dank <- PedalRoom
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  11. #11
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    how much difference is there between a fixed gear built on a '73 frame and a '11 frame?
    1986 Diamondback Apex ~ 1988 Diamondback Ascent EX ~ 1989 Jamis Dakar ~ 1989 Specialized Stumpjumper Comp
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  12. #12
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frantik View Post
    how much difference is there between a fixed gear built on a '73 frame and a '11 frame?
    About as much difference as there is a 73 Super Beetle and a New Beetle.



    Difference are (but not limited to)
    - Frame materials
    - Seat tube angle
    - Head tube angle
    - Fork Rake
    - Fork length (made for 27" vs 700c wheels) which affects brake arm reach
    - Seat tube diameter
    - Head tube diameter
    - Bottom Bracket shell (diameter, press fit, English/French threaded)
    - Compact vs Standard (old) geometry
    - The frame's "road worthiness". Basically, is it rusted out or pristine.

    ...and that's just the frame. The components have difference, too.

  13. #13
    Senior Member dontpassthefenc's Avatar
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    Except that the new beetle is a piece of **** plastic-fantastic, tarted up VW Golf. Whereas the Super Beetle is the pinnacle of the evolution of that small car, even came with the option for disc brakes and the 1600cc engine.

    Now I know the Beetles are just a quick-to-the-point analogy, I can't help being a bit biased as I ride old steel, too. However, I will concede that perhaps there are better choices to 'restore' rather than a generic Huffy.

  14. #14
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dontpassthefenc View Post
    Except that the new beetle is a piece of **** plastic-fantastic, tarted up VW Golf. Whereas the Super Beetle is the pinnacle of the evolution of that small car, even came with the option for disc brakes and the 1600cc engine.

    Now I know the Beetles are just a quick-to-the-point analogy, I can't help being a bit biased as I ride old steel, too. However, I will concede that perhaps there are better choices to 'restore' rather than a generic Huffy.
    I'd rather have that tarted up Golf when going from 60 - 0 within a few yards.

    Drum brakes all around?

    But, yeah, I get your point.




    The 84 GTI was the pinnacle. That car single-handedly created the sport compact car class.
    Last edited by carleton; 06-02-11 at 12:43 PM.

  15. #15
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    About as much difference as there is a 73 Super Beetle and a New Beetle.
    The reason i said something is because, to me, the most obvious difference between a classic VW and a modern one is the drivetrain: old VWs are aircooled, while new ones are watercooled. The drivetrain on fixed gear bikes hasn't changed that drastically, has it?

    I think learning how to wrench on old bikes, especially fixed gear, does translate over to newer bikes.. simple things like changes in materials, sizes and geometry don't require learning tons of new things.

    newer road bikes do have a lot of technology differences (indexed shifting, disc brakes, etc) but most fixed gear bikes don't incorporate much of that technology.. they don't have any shifting, and i rarely see any brakes
    Last edited by frantik; 06-02-11 at 12:30 PM.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member dontpassthefenc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    I'd rather have that tarted up Golf when going from 60 - 0 within a few yards.

    Drum brakes all around?

    But, yeah, I get your point.




    The 84 GTI was the pinnacle. That car singularly created the sport compact car class.
    Ah, a man that knows his small cars. I think I like you :3

  17. #17
    Senior Member LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    The 84 GTI was the pinnacle.
    Coincidentally 80s roadbikes are the pinnacle of road frames for conversions.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Olde Western Auto Cruiser.

  18. #18
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frantik View Post
    The reason i said something is because, to me, the most obvious difference between a classic VW and a modern one is the drivetrain: old VWs are aircooled, while new ones are watercooled. The drivetrain on fixed gear bikes hasn't changed that drastically, has it?

    I think learning how to wrench on old bikes, especially fixed gear, does translate over to newer bikes.. simple things like changes in materials, sizes and geometry don't require learning tons of new things.

    newer road bikes do have a lot of technology differences (indexed shifting, disc brakes, etc) but most fixed gear bikes don't incorporate much of that technology.. they don't have any shifting, and i rarely see any brakes
    I agree! I think that a properly restored bike or car with period-correct parts is an absolute thing of beauty. It's when guys try to make the old stuff modern is when I (and others) cringe.


    Quote Originally Posted by dontpassthefenc View Post
    Ah, a man that knows his small cars. I think I like you :3

    Thanks!

    I don't know my grammar, though. I meant to write "single-handedly instead of "singularly".

  19. #19
    Just smang it. EpicSchwinn's Avatar
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    I think a lot of people are missing the fact that this is a SINGLE SPEED not a TRACK BIKE. The intention was never to make a modern lightweight track bike with high end materials. There is nothing wrong with converting an old bike on the cheap for something to do. Some of us like working on bikes and it's still satisfying to get some grease on our hands and have a little project just to have something to do for a weekend. It's still satisfying to work on a bike regardless of how modern or expensive it is. I see nothing wrong with what word_nerd did here and no reason to judge him.

  20. #20
    Senior Member DC_United_Fan's Avatar
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    Dude, a Huffy would not have been my choice for a conversion, however, it was your choice and I think you did an awesome job based on what you had avaliable and chose to use. Hell, I even like the paint! Ride it like you Built it!
    Trek 2.1 - Training Rig
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  21. #21
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Pffft. This thread is about cars now.



    (just kidding)
    Last edited by carleton; 06-02-11 at 01:57 PM.

  22. #22
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    I was ready to roll my eyes when I saw the title. But I judged too early. Very good job, you made a nice looking workable bike for not much money.

    I'd be rolling my eyes if you would've said you stuck $300 into it .
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  23. #23
    Just smang it. EpicSchwinn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    Pffft. This thread is about cars now.



    (just kidding)
    Fixed gear cars?

  24. #24
    Senior Member word_nerd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FastJake View Post
    I was ready to roll my eyes when I saw the title. But I judged too early. Very good job, you made a nice looking workable bike for not much money.

    I'd be rolling my eyes if you would've said you stuck $300 into it .
    haha. thanks. yeah, i never had any intention of sinking real money into it. i had a lot of fun and learned a ton. and i didn't choose the frame. the frame chose me. i made the most of an opportunity when someone discarded the thing. from being on this forum, i also know a lot more of what to look for in a used bike. Take this thread for instance. Not sure what I'm going to do with it yet, but i have much more know-how now.
    1984 Puch Classic, best $5 i ever spent!

  25. #25
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    i think you did a great job on the paint job btw like the stripes a lot
    1986 Diamondback Apex ~ 1988 Diamondback Ascent EX ~ 1989 Jamis Dakar ~ 1989 Specialized Stumpjumper Comp
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