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Bicycle Frame Swap Compatibility Questions

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Bicycle Frame Swap Compatibility Questions

Old 04-09-17, 06:17 PM
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cdenniston
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Bicycle Frame Swap Compatibility Questions

I am planning to purchase a new steel road/cx/touring bike frameset. I want to replace/swap over my components from my 2009 Giant Defy 1. The reason I am making the switch is both for fun and because I want a more versatile bicycle that will allow larger tires and allow attachment of racks and fenders for commuting and light touring.

I am comfortable with swapping the basic components and understand the concepts of sizing for the basic pieces such as stems, bars, seat post, etc. However I am not sure how to determine wheels, drivetrain, and BB. My giant defy 1 has a Shimano 105 drivetrain and I need to be able to swap over some of the drivetrain, BB, and wheels to the new steel bike. I love the 105 set and it has plenty of life left. Swapping over the drive train and wheels will make this project financially viable.

So where do I begin to determine compatibility? How do I know that my derailleurs, cranks, cassettes, and all other parts and pieces will fit properly on my steel frame?

To start a frame I am very interested in is the All-City Space Horse. For learning sake lets use the All-City frameset as the basis for this discussion and I will use what I learn here for comparing other frames in the future. So, what parts from my 2009 Giant Defy 1 can I easily swap over to an All-City Space Horse frameset.

Thanks!
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Old 04-09-17, 06:51 PM
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Most likely the rear der, wheels will directly swap over. Maybe the ft der too depending on braze on or seat tube diameter. The B is very likely to be different although with the correct parts the crank will likely be reusable. The calipers maybe yes or no, dependent on brake reach and mounting method.


What i suggest is to make a list of the giant's specs then next to that a list of the new frame's specs. Please don't ask us to do this for you. But do feel free to ask about the specific spec differences that you uncover. Andy.
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Old 04-09-17, 07:15 PM
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Yes I could take it to a shop if I wanted someone to do it for me. The objective here is for me to learn so that I understand. I am trying to learn how to fish brother.

Thanks for the suggestions. All on point and things to consider. You are correct they have different BB's. The all-city is "threaded" I think? and the Giant is a BB30 or something like that. But youre saying it would be possible to change the BB and still use the same cranks?

Unfortunately I believe the front der's are also mounted differently so that is a no go. Unless there is some sort of clamp adapter for brazeons to convert them to a clamp?
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Old 04-09-17, 09:20 PM
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For the FD, search for 'braze-on adapter.' Tons of options, all relatively cheap. I buy all braze-on derailleurs because they will fit any frame, with the correct adapter. A too-small clamp on FD is worthless.

Shimano cranks are 24mm and designed around a standard threaded bottom bracket shell. Adapters make it work in a BB30 shell. So just plan to leave those in your frame and buy a standard outboard bearing Shimano bottom bracket (105, Ultegra, or Dura Ace will all work, and I believe that all of Shimano's stuff is backwards and forwards compatible, too, so just buy what is in your budget and available).

The brakes from your Giant almost certainly will not work on a frame designed for fenders and larger tires.
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Old 04-10-17, 07:22 AM
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Your Defy is a road bike and probably has 130 mm rear dropout spacing. Most current CX/touring frames are spaced 135 mm so you will have to respace your rear hub or get a frame that accepts 130 mm hubs. Some Surly frames are spaced 132.5 mm and will take either width hub with no problem.

Since you already have a 105 crank get a new frame with an English threaded bottom bracket and you can change over the current crank directly with, at worst, needing Shimano threaded bottom bracket cups.

As joejack951 noted, your current "short reach" caliper brakes are unlikely to work on the new bike. You will need "long reach" calipers or possibly even cantilevers or V-brakes depending on the new frame's brake mounts. Even disc brakes aren't out of the question depending on what you buy and these will require a completely new wheel set.

This will be an interesting project and can be a fairly straightforward conversion or a rather expensive one depending on what frame you buy.
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Old 04-10-17, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
This will be an interesting project and can be a fairly straightforward conversion or a rather expensive one depending on what frame you buy.
For the expense, would be working out how cost effective it is to do the swap vs just buying a new groupset/complete bike.

No mention has been given of the condition of the groupset, but it's pushing 10 years old, and if you need to replace the cassette, chain, chainrings, brakes (or just the pads) & the wheels as mentioned above, then all these cost really would be better put into a complete new groupset /full bike, which will have no compatibility issues.

For the learning how to do it, that's a great idea, but moving old/worn parts onto a new frame with compatibility issues is diving in at the deep end, would be starting small if new to fixing bikes, with stuff that at least is meant to work together first.
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Old 04-10-17, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by cdenniston View Post
I am planning to purchase a new steel road/cx/touring bike frameset... For learning sake lets use the All-City (Space Horse) frameset as the basis for this discussion and I will use what I learn here for comparing other frames in the future. So, what parts from my 2009 Giant Defy 1 can I easily swap over to an All-City Space Horse frameset.
Which specific frame you select has quite a bit of bearing on what's transferable. Some of the things to consider are dropout spacing when it comes to wheels, bottom bracket shell type for the bottom bracket & crankset, type of brake the frame was designed for (and reach if we're talking calipers), front derailleur mount type/diameter, etc. But since you offered up the Space Horse as a possibility, we can talk about what's needed.

The Space Horse has 130 mm dropouts, just like the Giant Defy 1, so your wheels will transfer.

The (non-disc) Space Horse is designed for cantilever or v-brakes, so you'd likely want to replace your brakes even if the reach of your old brakes worked (and it probably wouldn't). Cantilever and caliper brakes use compatible cable pull ratios, so you could pick up some cantilever brakes to mate to your 105 levers. Tektro CR720 brakes are inexpensive, decent brakes. "Mini-v" brakes are another option since they have compatible pull ratios to cantilevers, but they'd potentially reduce clearance for fenders.

The Space Horse has an English threaded bottom bracket shell. BikePedia says your 2009 Giant Defy 1 was originally equipped with an FSA Gossamer crankset and MegaEXO bottom bracket. If that bottom bracket is designed for an English threaded shell, it'll transfer right over. Otherwise, you can pick up an English-threaded MegaEXO bottom bracket to transfer your crankset to the Space Horse frame.

If your Giant's front derailleur mounts via a brazed-on tab, you can pick up a braze-on adapter that'll fit the Space Horse's 28.6 mm seat tube and use that to transfer the derailleur to the new frame. If your Giant has a clamped-on front derailleur, you can pick up a shim that'll help its clamp fit the Space Horse's seat tube.

Overall, it would be a pretty straightforward parts transplant, with only a few inexpensive items needed to make it work.
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Old 04-10-17, 11:30 AM
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Are you sure it has a 105 crank or a BB30? Most bikes with BB30 would come with a SRAM or FSA 30 mm crank. It's not uncommon for the crank to not match the group.
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