Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 05-30-11, 07:24 PM   #1
2pendulums
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 2
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
trying to decide on cross country touring bike, old or new?

Hello everyone,

I'm new to this forum and relatively inexperienced with cycling and not at all knowledgeable about bicycles. I have done quite a bit of research but I have gotten conflicting advice and I would like to consult this community and see what y'all have to say.

I have been riding my dads old '77 Fuji S-10-S and I love the bike. I have gone on a week long tour on it through the Blue Ridge Mountains and I had no problems, but that was a year ago and the bike just feels "rough" since then. The gears don't change smoothly (they click sometimes) and the brakes have basically gone to ****. I could use new tires and possibly new wheels. I think I would benefit from getting a crankset with 3 front gears as the bike is currently a 12 speed.

So I took the bike into a shop to talk to them about my biking needs and they said a new bike, even on the low end, would be infinitely better for my purposes. I knew that these guys weren't working on sales commissions and were clearly experienced and knowledgeable, but I had a hard time seeing the logic in what they told me. They told me that my bike was too big for me (It is but I have ridden it enough to know that I don't care- it doesn't hurt my back like they suggested) and then they told me that getting new gears, brakes, etc would really pile up. After test riding a $1700 bike that didn't feel particularly awesome, I don't really see how it could pile up that much.

So do you think I could get a complete overhaul on the Fuji for under $600? New gear system, brakes wheels etc.? Won't that make the bike ride like a new (although yes- steel framed) bike after that? Some of the alternatives I have seriously considered are the Windsor Tourist ($600) and the Trek 520 ($1300). My concerns are that the spokes on the Tourist will pop on me for the whole two months and the Trek 520 will deplete my budget so severely that I will have to ask my parents for money during my voyage.

What really has me questioning the necessity of a new bike is that the ones I test rode just didn't feel that much better, with the exception being the brakes. (They told me that the gears would be adjusted if I decided to buy a bike...) Maybe I am too dense to realize the difference.

In conclusion, I like my dads old bike and I don't care if it would be a little bit easier to do it on a new bike. That being said, I don't want to be grossly stupid and make this trip twice as hard as it might otherwise be.

Thanks for reading!
2pendulums is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-11, 08:03 PM   #2
kuan
Twincities MN
 
kuan's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Salsa, Cannondale, Surly.
Bikes:
Posts: 2,527
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
What about a Novara Safari?

http://www.rei.com/product/807245/no...fari-bike-2011
__________________
www.marrow.org
kuan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-11, 08:22 PM   #3
Nycycle
Senior Member
 
Nycycle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Taylorsville Utah
Bikes: Long Haul Trucker
Posts: 797
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
2pendulums,,, Hope what I write helps.
I have an old bike from the early 80's,,,I am learning the hard way, not worth fixing it up unless you love the frame enough to spend a bunch on it. And if you got to pay a bike shop to do the work, I agree, time for a new one.Take your time, shop around. As far as steel frames go, I sure like my Surly. It took me 4 years to decide.

Nycycle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-11, 08:29 PM   #4
Cyclebum 
Senior Member
 
Cyclebum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: NE Tx
Bikes: Tour Easy, Linear USS, Lightening Thunderbolt, custom DF, Raleigh hybrid, Felt time trial
Posts: 2,768
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If you haven't already done so, Google "77 Fuji S" for 4 links to previous BF threads. Might be helpful.

You seem pretty determined, maybe for sentimental reasons, to make this Fuji your touring bike. As long as it can be made mechnically reliable within your budget, and you can ride it 5-7 hrs/day in some degree of comfort, it's a touring bike. If you're willing to accept its limitations, go for it.

A modern, dedicated touring bike might get you from A to B a bit faster(better gearing for hills), and be more comfortable(fit.) But that doesn't sound like your priority.
__________________
The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me
Cyclebum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-11, 08:36 PM   #5
crackerdog
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Port Townsend, WA
Bikes: xtracycle, electric recumbent, downtube folder and more
Posts: 982
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've just pulled out my '78 Sekai touring bike that I haven't ridden for 25 years (I've been riding cargo, folding, electric bikes in the meantime). I put new brake pads, a new bottom bracket ($20), regreased all the moving parts and it is great. I am getting a different stem so I can raise the drops a couple of inches (getting older). So if the bike fits you, ride it. Put new brake pads on, look at youtube about how to adjust the gears. Presto, you're rolling. I doubt you need new wheels, maybe tires but unless your rims are worn through from the brake pads, you are good to go.
crackerdog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-30-11, 09:26 PM   #6
Yan 
BeaverTerror
 
Yan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Shanghai, China
Bikes: 1995 Kestrel 4000; 2013 True North Touring; 1989 Miele Tivoli; 1979 Colnago Sport
Posts: 1,943
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 156 Post(s)
Last week I bought a used 2010 Novara Randonee for $600 plus shipping. You'd be much better off putting your money into a used modern touring bike.

If you stick with the Fuji, you'll need to upgrade with a modern drivetrain. This means you'll need atleast:

Rear wheel $200
Cassette $40
Chain $25
Crankset $150
Derailleurs $100
Bar End Shifters $80
Total: $595, if you do the labour youself.

Another drawback of the Fuji is that it uses caliper brakes and therefore has limited tire and fender clearance. This probaby means you'll forgo fenders to maximize the tire size. Touring without fenders is extremely unpleasant. While other problems associated with adapting a road bike into a touring bike can be resolved with various hardware solutions, you can't go from caliper brakes to cantiliever brakes.

Buying a used modern bike will solve all of the above problems for about the same amount of money, and will also give you touring specific steering geometry.
__________________
Yan
Yan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 06:05 AM   #7
Phil_gretz
Journeyman Bike Commuter
 
Phil_gretz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Alexandria, VA
Bikes: '88 Fuji Saratoga, '12 Jamis Sputnik, '13 Motobecane Fantom29 HT, '16 Motobecane Turino Pro Disc, '16 Motobecane Gran Premio Elite
Posts: 3,959
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 108 Post(s)
Alternate Estimate For DIY Upgrade to Fuji

If the frame doesn't fit, then you may have to make other adjustments. But let's assume that the frame is okay. You'll need to cold-set it to 126mm to accept a 7-speed rear hub.
New estimates:

36H 27" Touring Wheelset $150 (Check Harris Cyclery)
Freewheel $30
Chain $15
Crankset $110 (Sugino Triple)
BB Cartridge $25
Derailleurs $60 (SunTour Cyclone or X-1)
Bar End Shifters $50 (SunTour Friction)
Cables $20
Brake Cartridges/Pads $35

Total: $495, if you do the labor youself. You'll also need to check the stem reach and height, if that was the concern of the bike shop. Maybe $50 additional for a Nitto Technomic to fit you better.

Keep your current DiaCompe brake calipers, they're fine. Add KoolStop salmon cartridges and pads for a low-cost upgrade. I'm assuming the DiaCompe levers are also fine.

I have a 'S-10S, and the geometry is fine for touring, as is the clearance for fenders. Agree with Yan, above. You'll want to add them. This is also a neutral cost to whatever bike project you choose, but it'll run ~$55 for a set. You can do it yourself.

What did you do for loading on the front of the bike? You may need to add a front rack w/panniers and/or a handlebar bag. Factor these costs in as well. Although it's a neutral cost as it applies to whatever bike you choose.

What size is the current S-10S, and what are your relative dimensions - leg length, torso length, height, etc.? Maybe it's not a solvable problem...

I re-built a 1988 Fuji Conestoga for my touring bike, and I love it.

Phil

Last edited by Phil_gretz; 05-31-11 at 06:10 AM. Reason: Added Brake Costs. PG
Phil_gretz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 06:34 AM   #8
bradtx
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Pearland, Texas
Bikes: Cannondale, Trek, Raleigh, Santana
Posts: 6,847
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 109 Post(s)
2pendulums, While I understand the sentimentality aspect, I vote to buy the Windsor and have the LBS retension the wheelset and finish off the assembly. Save the Fuji as a spare and work on it a little bit at a time to improve your bicycle mechanic skills.

Brad
bradtx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 07:34 AM   #9
la traviata
Senior Member
 
la traviata's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 89
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
if you love the bike get it tuned up, ride it and be happy. sounds like you already made up your mind. don't worry, your not being stupid.
la traviata is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 09:11 AM   #10
m_yates
Senior Member
 
m_yates's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Rochester, NY
Bikes:
Posts: 610
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
What Phil_gretz said is the only way to do it cheaply. No modern bikes use 27 inch wheels or freewheels. If you want to use modern wheels, they would by 700c size, which may mean new brakes with a longer reach. Modern wheels also use cassettes instead of freewheels and have different rear hub spacing. That means you'd have to cold set your rear frame triangle to match the spacing of the new rear wheel. Installing a triple crankset probably means a new front derailleur, as well as a new long cage rear derailleur. It becomes a domino effect where upgrading one thing means upgrading another. In the end, you can end up with just the frame and a few other minor components original and replacing nearly everything. The cost almost always becomes similar to or greater than a new bike.

Even if you do what Phil_gretz said, add the cost of tools if you do the work yourself. You'll need some bike specific tools like a crank puller, bottom bracket tool, freewheel tool, and cable housing cutter.
m_yates is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 10:47 AM   #11
irwin7638
Senior Member
 
irwin7638's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Kalamazoo, Mi.
Bikes: Byron,Sam, The Hunq and that Old Guy
Posts: 2,892
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 29 Post(s)
Upgrading the Fuji sounds like a good choice, if you want to tour you will end up with a steel frame. It's not as complicated as the LBS makes it sound,and learning to do the work is a plus. You can replace what you want as it fits your budget, still have the bike to enjoy and save up for a new one as you learn. Hang out in the CV forum to pick up some tips and ideas.

Marc
irwin7638 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 09:48 PM   #12
Yan 
BeaverTerror
 
Yan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Shanghai, China
Bikes: 1995 Kestrel 4000; 2013 True North Touring; 1989 Miele Tivoli; 1979 Colnago Sport
Posts: 1,943
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 156 Post(s)
Neither the Fuji's 126mm rear dropout spacing nor its 27" wheels are problems. People regularly use modern 130mm hubs on frames spaced at 126mm. 700c rims are only 8mm smaller in diameter than 27" rims. If your brake calipers have 4mm of excess reach, you can upgrade your wheels without changing your brakes.
__________________
Yan
Yan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-31-11, 11:16 PM   #13
Takara
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Bikes:
Posts: 290
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You definitely don't need, and don't sound like you want, a gaudy expensive touring-marketed new bike. Just find a more respectful and less avaricious shop to tune up your fine old bike. Those old Fujis are an abolute joy. Tires for 27" wheels are available at every bike shop and every Walmart in North America. Ride your dad's lovely old bike with pride. It's totally capable of bearing you through beautiful tours.
Takara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-01-11, 01:28 AM   #14
LeeG
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 4,703
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
get a new bike. Your old one probably doesn't have serviceable wheels in that the spoke nipples are probably corroded to the spokes. The Windsor with tuned wheels will last longer. Cheap replacement wheels for the Fuji won't be better than the ones on the Windsor once a mechanic goes over them. Old wheels may be rideable but once you load stuff on the bike spokes WILL start breaking. That's what I saw in the 80's when folks were touring with their "old bike" that was never ridden with loads.
With properly inflated tires your effort won't be any different between that old bike and a new one, what will be different is that the old bike as it sits won't hold up and as you say requires a massive replacement of major components, and we're assuming the headset and bb. are ok and not pitted. You don't have to spend $1200 but if the bike as it sits requires $600 you're much better off looking for a used bike in better condition or a new bike for under $750. While you say the expensive bikes aren't awesome your existing bike really isn't up to the task without major rennovation. So don't get an expensive bike and consider options that start you off with new wheels and new drivetrain.
If you are stuck on using the old bike I'd suggest heading out replacing the rear wheel, tires, and the cheapest low gear setup possible and learn to do it all without the shop except for items requiring special tools.
LeeG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-11, 04:56 PM   #15
2pendulums
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 2
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
First and foremost, I want to thank everyone who responded to this thread. I considered all of your suggestions & opinions and I decided that I am going to use the Fuji. I am going to go over it with an expert this Friday so I can learn about maintenance while actually replacing the chain and brakes and whatever else needs to be fixed. Ultimately, I decided that I want to do this tour on a bike I am familiar and comfortable with.

Phil, I decided that the size of the bike is a non-issue. I have ridden it enough to know that there are no ill effects associated with the sizing, it just isn't the frame size that a professional would fit me with as my dad is 2-3 inches taller than me.

Kuan, thank you for your suggestion. I hadn't looked at that bicycle before.
2pendulums is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:08 PM.