Main question: I was thinking of studding (as per the stickied DIY studs thread) the Tioga Bloodhound 27 1-3/8 tire that I just bought for the week or two of snow here. What do you think?
I've got a '76 Schwinn continental that is my only bike for all-year round use. I commute to work only about 4 miles (one way) in a city/suburban environment for about two years now on this bike minus snow and ice. This is the bike I've got, so I'm not really concerned that I could spend more money on a lighter bike or something more recent. I've recently gotten alloy 27" wheels for it, new sunrace 5-sp freewheel, chain, schimano tourney RD, kool stop continental pads, rear specialized tri-sport 27 1-1/4 tire, and a kenda k35 tire on the front and replaced all cable/housing except for the front brake. Everything else is stock. - I'll be getting Crane Creek SCR-5 brake levers in the next week or so to replace the stock levers.
I'm done with the kenda tires as the rear didn't take glass very well, and the front tire, even if its only 2 months old, is already starting to show long cracks between the black and tan rubber. (Though, I've been using them for 2 years... started going through them too fast).
I'm in New Jersey so the winter here can get down to the 10's and 20's (F). In the winter there could be up to 1ft+ of snow at a time, usually melting and refreezing for about a week or longer. Not as cold as some of the places I've read about here, but still pretty cold.
I bought a Tioga Bloodhound 27 1-3/8 tire as I've heard they're pretty good for when there is some light snow. (Also, if my tires have thus far been 27 1-1/4... will the 27 1-3/8 fit OK as well? Hard to find any info on the differences between 1-1/4, 1-3/8, and 1-1/8.) For the few times it snows, I usually take the bus, but if I can stud this tire for the front, and people would think this would be OK I'll totally go for it. I would probably get another 27 inch alloy rim so that I could switch them out easily. What do people think?
Since I ride in the rain, (no snow yet) my bike gets really dirty, really really fast, any suggestions? All of the bikes I've seen here look almost absolutely pristine like no one ever rides them.
One more question... I still have my old steel rims. How can I learn to build wheels so I can build 700 size wheels with the schwinn hubs? Would I need to service the hubs too? How do I learn to do that?
I would love to find another old neglected Schwinn continental or alike chap for a project bike. Its hard to want to tinker with the one I have when that means not being able to ride it as a main form of transportation. I was thinking of trying a fixed-gear bike/put one together. Never ridden one before, but I hear one gets more control with one. Don't know what all the hype is about with the hip kids though... and not really my concern. I just like bikes!
Here is a photo of my bike right before I bought it. I've noticed a lot more of the paint has come off in certain spots since then from riding and keeping a lock on it at bike racks filled with bikes. Oh well...tbikea.jpgtioga.jpg