Old 07-15-16, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by WolfRider View Post
Newbie here, but I appreciate all the archieved info available on the site.

I grew up cycling and was a decent rider and I know vintage bikes pretty well. I was never much of mechanic though. I have just started getting back into cycling after a long time off. Finally got in riding shape on a crapola commuter. I wasn't even trying that hard but I just picked up a couple nice vintage Road bikes somehow. I know what I like, I am vintage steel guy 80's 90's Road or Mountain. (I'm lost with all the newer bikes Carbon fiber ,aluminum and most mfg seems to be in China and parts plastic) I plan on getting a few more bikes. So what I have is a Rossin Record and a Raliegh Competition GS. Both are clean and original and have been garage queens for awhile.

So the local bike shop guy is good but a little pricy for me. I am just having him repack BB bearings and hubs and maybe put some new brake rubber on.

What is the best course of action from that point? I want to take all the parts off and clean them and detail the frame forks. and put everything back together. I would like to do a little work myself to learn, but I don't have tools and I don't want to mess anything up on these two. I probably need a practice bike to hack around on myself. It would be great if I could find a guy to help me and I could learn a little in the process. Or I could just pay to get it done right. Any suggestions? What can I get away with doing myself? ( I am coordinated with tools, just need direction and some practice)
Bike coops are a great place to start. You put them down yet it seems like you know much less than they do.

Old bikes are generally the easiest to work on, unless they have some sort of old proprietary technology that's barely ever seen anymore. (Shimano front freewheel for example.)

I'm going to be honest with you here, but if you took the bike to the shop to get the BB repacked and new pads put on, you may be over your head as those are two of the easier things you can do on a bike. Sure, you need a couple of special tools to do the BB, but nothing a competent home bike mechanic wouldn't have. Don't take this the wrong way. Bikes are easy to learn!

I suggest going to the COOP. They're there to help you learn, not to fix your bike for free. You can learn on other bikes too, not just your own! Ask the coop people if you can help fix other bikes, or simply learn. I'm sure they'd love to have you. If you don't like the particular volunteer you're working with, then come back another day. We have a hierarchy at our coop. If any of the new volunteers can't fix something, they bring it to one of the more seasoned volunteers. If they can't fix it they bring it to me. If I can't fix it I bring it to the old guy at the shop who has been doing bikes since the 70s. At that point it's unlikely that we will be able to fix it anyway. Sometimes we simply do not have the parts to fix something. (For example, a guy needed a 73 x 113 BB the other day, which we did not have unfortunately.)

Last edited by corrado33; 07-15-16 at 10:20 AM.
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