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Need Help Converting my Mountain Bike to a Road Bike

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Need Help Converting my Mountain Bike to a Road Bike

Old 11-08-11, 03:35 PM
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Need Help Converting my Mountain Bike to a Road Bike

I have a Rocky Mountain Vapor 2007 that I only use on the Bike path and it's really difficult to get any speed or power because of the front shocks. So I'm going to install rigid shocks and 26 x 1.5 road tires on my bike. But I have a few questions first that I hope can be answered.

I dont have a lot of money, I'm trying to keep my expenses on this close to $100 so please keep that in mind. Also my main goal is speed and quality of ride..I'm using this bike primarily for exercise/going fast on the bike path. So please consider my needs when suggesting parts for my bike.

I would like to order my parts from Bikeman.com so help me choose parts from there.

First off...I need to replace the forks...https://www.bikeman.com/Rigid_Fork.html

Do I choose mountain bike forks or road bike forks? And which forks should I get that have a balance between cost and what Im looking for?

I also need a new front wheel because I dont want to use disk brakes on the front of my bike. And also inexpensive handbrakes.

I'm going to be buying 26 x 1.5 kenda tires but there are 2 different versions...one is 65psi and the other is 100psi. Which one should I choose and why?

65psi
https://www.bikeman.com/TR5168.html

100psi
https://www.bikeman.com/TR5103.html


And some innertubes that are good quality. I think I want shrader innertubes because thats what ive always used so any help would be really appreciated!

Thanks for all the guidance you can provide me!!

Last edited by BLKLBL; 11-08-11 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 11-08-11, 04:16 PM
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If you really want to go that route, you can probably find a (highly generic) cheap new fork for $50 or so, with bosses for traditional cantilever brakes or linear-pull cantilever brakes ("V-brakes"). Look for a utilitarian, less racing-oriented bike shop that has cheap or used no-name parts.

Some used forks might work if the steerer tube isn't cut too short, but many older forks from vintage mountain bikes won't work with your threadless headset. Installing a threaded headset to work with a cheap old fork probably isn't a good idea, and might not even work with your frame.

V-brakes will work with your current disk levers unless your current brakes are hydraulic. If you have hydraulic disks, you can swap them out for cantilevers or V-brakes quite cheaply. Tektro makes various cheap levers that will do what you want. However, it might be cheaper to just use your existing disk brakes. Disks are good. You really don't want to have a rear disk brake and a weaker front brake. It makes more sense to have a strong front brake and a weak rear brake; there really aren't any good uses for a rear brake unless you're riding offroad or have a problem with the front brake. (Why don't you want disks, exactly?)

By the time you've done all this, you will have spent enough to buy a road bike. The geometry and feel of mountain bikes is very different than road bikes, and they aren't really very good at all for riding long distances on pavement. My ultimate recommendation is that you keep an eye out for used road, touring, hybrid, or cyclocross bikes. If you don't want to use your Rocky Mountain for its intended (highly specialized) purpose, then sell it and buy a new or used road-oriented bike that does what you want. You might even make some money in the process.
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Old 11-08-11, 04:34 PM
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BLKLBL, Tight budget so... The front fork doesn't really need replacing if it has a lock out feature or adjustable preload which can be set stiffer. If non adjustable there might be some stiffer replacement springs or as a last resort a length of PVC pipe installed in place of a spring. Tires are then going to eat into your budget. Find some 1.5"-2" city tires, either of the tires you listed will work.

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Old 11-08-11, 04:46 PM
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I dont know if it has a lockout feature and I dont even want to check because I want the disc brake off my front wheel anyways. It rubs something inside and slows my bike down. Im not a bike mechanic and I dont know what the problem is but it was like that from the very beginning. So I want to replace everything in the front...the fork...the wheel...the tire etc like I mentioned in my first post.
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Old 11-08-11, 04:53 PM
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If it were me I would just replace the tires with a more street friendly tread, then ride it and save up the rest of the $$$ until you can get the right bike.

For the record I tried to take the path you are on when I first started. It really is cheaper in the long run just to get the right bike to start with. I could probably be on a Venge at this point if I had the money I spent on bikes & upgrades in the past year.
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Old 11-08-11, 04:54 PM
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Sell it and look for a deal on a used road bike. With your budget, if you look aggressively, it will be very possible to take the proceeds from your MTB, plus the $100.

$100 for a replacement fork, wheel, brake, tires, tubes, and labor; not going to happen.
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Old 11-08-11, 04:55 PM
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Just replace the tires.. then if it still seems pressing, the suspension corrected
rigid MTB fork, can be step 2..
Im not a bike mechanic and I dont know what the problem is but it was like that from the very beginning. So I want to replace everything in the front...the fork...the wheel...the tire etc like I mentioned in my first post.
best to have the people at the bike shop do the work then..

but there ,after you get the estimate, have them show you a few road/hybrid bikes,
there are some nice straight bar .. tires of similar width ..

Last edited by fietsbob; 11-08-11 at 05:01 PM.
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Old 11-08-11, 04:59 PM
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On a $100 budget don't replace anything that isn't absolutely necessary, maybe tires in the future. Whether you need Schrader valve tubes or Presta valve tubes depends on the valve hole in the rim. If it is drilled for Presta, stay with Presta, if drilled for Schrader, stay with Schrader. Presta valves are lighter with a smaller diameter allowing for narrower rims. Schrader are good but require a larger hole in the rim.
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Old 11-08-11, 05:13 PM
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I have slick tires on my bike already and that isnt the problem...the problem is the suspension forks and the disc brake. Im not looking to buy another bike, all I want to do is convert this bike for as little money as possible. I can afford a $1000 road bike if I want to but that isnt what I want to do. All I want to do is what I asked in my original post. Not even 1 person has helped me with links from Bikeman.com to reccommend which parts to use. ...I can obviously just choose any random parts from Bikeman but I have absolutely no clue about their quality etc. That's what I came here for to ask for the expertise of people who understand this stuff....which I dont at the moment.
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Old 11-08-11, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by BLKLBL
I dont know if it has a lockout feature and I dont even want to check because I want the disc brake off my front wheel anyways. It rubs something inside and slows my bike down. Im not a bike mechanic and I dont know what the problem is but it was like that from the very beginning. So I want to replace everything in the front...the fork...the wheel...the tire etc like I mentioned in my first post.
The brake is rubbing? Get it fixed. Then it won't slow you down. The fix will be cheaper than a new brakeset.

Originally Posted by BLKLBL
All I want to do is what I asked in my original post. Not even 1 person has helped me...
That's because you're asking the impossible. There's no way you can get a new front wheel, brakes, fork, etc for $100. The labor to install everything will probably be more than that. For new parts I bet you could not do this for under $300, and that's using low end parts.

To decide on a fork you need to know whether your bike has a threaded or threadless headset, and the diameter of the steerer tube. We cannot make recommendations without this info. See here: https://sheldonbrown.com/headsets.html
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Old 11-08-11, 06:54 PM
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The expertise of the people who understand this stuff is whats driving the replies you have gotten.

You're wanting to turn a truck into a Corvette. Everyone here is just saying its a better idea to go buy a Mustang.
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Old 11-08-11, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by FastJake
The brake is rubbing? Get it fixed. Then it won't slow you down. The fix will be cheaper than a new brakeset.



That's because you're asking the impossible. There's no way you can get a new front wheel, brakes, fork, etc for $100. The labor to install everything will probably be more than that. For new parts I bet you could not do this for under $300, and that's using low end parts.

To decide on a fork you need to know whether your bike has a threaded or threadless headset, and the diameter of the steerer tube. We cannot make recommendations without this info. See here: https://sheldonbrown.com/headsets.html
The $100 dollar figure is just a rough guide. The entire time I've mentioned that all I want to do is do it as cheaply as possible + the best quality possible for the price. So whatever that comes out to I'll buy it.
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Old 11-08-11, 07:38 PM
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Ok, you're makin me do this... To prove a point here are some examples of what you could buy. I used the least expensive parts I could that don't totally suck:

Fork, $75 https://www.bikeman.com/FK0001.html
V-brake, $14 https://www.ebay.com/itm/BICYCLE-BIKE...item4cefaa688f
Front wheel, $46 https://www.ebay.com/itm/26-INCH-FRON...item35b55a189f
Tires, $38 https://www.bikeman.com/TR5168.html
Tubes, $10 (any LBS)
Labor (estimated) $100+

You're looking at $273 to make this change. And you'll STILL be left with a bike that isn't good for its purpose, only worth about $250-300 if you were to sell it.

For $450 you could buy a brand new Trek 7.1FX which would be perfect for the riding you describe. Sell your MTB for $250 and you'll still be money ahead. But I know this will fall on deaf ears...
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Old 11-08-11, 07:48 PM
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https://www.bikeman.com/FK0502.html

Removing the disk brakes because they are rubbing is like giving your car to the junkyard because the radio is not tuned to the right station. Fix the existing brakes, get a rigid fork like the one above, some high pressure tires, and ride the wheels off it.

High pressure tires will roll faster than lower pressure ones because deflection in the tire saps energy, and higher pressure allows less deflection.

Total outlay: $98 (fork), $50 (two tires), $10 (two tubes) = $158

Edit: get three of these tubes: https://www.bikeman.com/TU6752.html
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Old 11-08-11, 07:52 PM
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Get on your bike and lean against the wall with your shoulder. Have an assistant measure from the axle to the crown of the fork in millimeters.

Get a fork with an axle to crown measurement as close to that as you can.

I'm going to guess it will be in the 440 neighborhood, so get this fork:

https://www.bikeman.com/KON-P2MTN440.html $70

Get this brake:
https://www.bikeman.com/BR5990.html $27

Get this wheel:
https://www.bikeman.com/WE8626.html $56

I'd just go with the low pressure Kendas unless you weigh a lot. At 150 lbs, I do just fine with 50 psi in 1.5" tires.

Tires $40-50.

Cost before shipping: $193-203.

Are you SURE you don't want a road bike? I mean if you can get $350 for the RM and add another $200 to that you can get into a decent road bike at BikesDirect.com

https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...record_xii.htm

https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...rion_al_xi.htm
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Old 11-08-11, 08:10 PM
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Thank you for helping me out everyone! I really appreciate helping me out according to my needs.

FastJake - Im just going to install it myself so labor was never a part of the equation.

LarDasse74 - The disk brake is only 1 of the problems I mentioned. I've had this bike for 4 years now and Ive never once used the front brakes so it doesnt matter anyways. I just stop my bike with my back brake.

LesterOfPuppets - I just want to order everything online so it makes it a lot easier for me to simply order the parts and add the new parts to the bike I already have. It will be cheaper and all I have to do is sit here and wait for the parts to arrive. I dont want to deal with selling my bike and then going to a bike shop to buy a new bike. Its just so much more convienient to do it this way plus its cheaper.
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Old 11-08-11, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by BLKLBL
Im just going to install it myself so labor was never a part of the equation.

LarDasse74 - The disk brake is only 1 of the problems I mentioned. I've had this bike for 4 years now and Ive never once used the front brakes so it doesnt matter anyways. I just stop my bike with my back brake.
Sigh... where to begin.

You're going to do all the work yourself but can't/haven't fixed your disc brake in 4 years? Good luck. Seriously...don't go with a V-brake on the front. It'll look really stupid having a V-brake on the front and a disc on the back. Just fix the disc brake.

"Ive never once used the front brakes" This is a safety issue. Unless you only ride at very slow speeds, you should really learn how to use the front brake effectively. It can stop you about twice as fast as the rear brake alone. https://sheldonbrown.com/brakturn.html
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Old 11-08-11, 09:01 PM
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Cheapest way to go faster on that bike is to HTFU.
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Old 11-08-11, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by FastJake
Sigh... where to begin.

You're going to do all the work yourself but can't/haven't fixed your disc brake in 4 years? Good luck. Seriously...don't go with a V-brake on the front. It'll look really stupid having a V-brake on the front and a disc on the back. Just fix the disc brake.

"Ive never once used the front brakes" This is a safety issue. Unless you only ride at very slow speeds, you should really learn how to use the front brake effectively. It can stop you about twice as fast as the rear brake alone. https://sheldonbrown.com/brakturn.html
Im not riding on a Tron Lightcycle it's pretty simple to stop using the back brake.
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Old 11-08-11, 09:27 PM
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Increased stopping distance = bad in an emergency.

I'm done, I give up. You seem to have all the answers already. Good luck.
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Old 11-08-11, 10:17 PM
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Stop feeding the troll.

8 posts, 6 of them in this thread

Originally Posted by BLKLBL
Im not a bike mechanic and I dont know what the problem
Then

Originally Posted by BLKLBL
Im just going to install it myself

Last edited by Mark Kelly; 11-08-11 at 11:44 PM.
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Old 11-08-11, 10:59 PM
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I joined this forum over a year before you did...all 8 of my posts arent in this thread...what would that even matter anyways if they were all in this thread and I was asking for advice on which parts to use to rebuild my bike the way I want it to be? Thats the opposite of a troll. I'd be in other peoples threads with 100's of more posts. Anyways, I dont know what the problem with my disk brake is...But it also doesnt matter because it isnt the only problem. Im removing my suspension forks regardless so Im just gonna get rid of everything thats bugging me at once. And I will just learn how to install my fork/v-brakes etc from youtube videos. You dont need to be a bicycle mechanic to be able to learn how to do stuff like this. Everyone at one point didnt know what to do...then they were taught by someone else. Just like Im about to do.
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Old 11-09-11, 02:40 AM
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Disk brake that are rubbing (a swish-swish sort of sound? a constant dragging sort of sound?) are really easy to fix unless they're horribly corroded inside. The Hayes MX-4 disk brakes should have a little knobby thing you can turn to adjust where the pad sits. If it's rubbing, the knob needs to be loosened so it doesn't rub any more. (If the knob is stuck, you can use an Allen wrench in the little hole in the middle. You may need to remove the pads and spray the body with penetrating oil to free adjusting mechanism.) If that doesn't fix it, the disk may be out of true, and you can bend it back into position with a wrench (or a cheap purpose-built tool). That saves you the cost of a V-brake AND a new wheel (the old WTB Sx24 rim isn't designed for a rim brake).

Here's a fork for $65: https://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...3&category=703

Make sure the steerer tube is long enough and the correct width. I think other posters have addressed this already.

They also have a non-disk one with canti studs if you're *really* set on not having a front disk. If you get rid of your front disk, though, you should also get rid of your back one; having more stopping power in the rear than the front is a recipe for skidding, tire wear, and poor stopping distance (besides looking silly).

I have found perfectly good slick 26"x1.5" tires for <$15 at my local Mountain Equipment Co-op, and tubes for $3.75. Spending more on tires is probably advisable, though.

I think that's all you need. You *can* do this for $100 or so. As others have pointed out, spending much more is probably silly.

If all you're doing is putting a rigid fork in and then installing disks on it, you probably can figure most of it out from YouTube videos. However, your local bike shop has some tools that make parts of this job *much* easier. Budget a little bit of money to buy tools or for labour at your LBS.

(Aside: I'm now really curious about how to define "the opposite of a troll" precisely. I suppose that would be somebody who goads others into feelings of charity and happiness with his inflammatory posts?)
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Old 11-09-11, 02:57 AM
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Look, a V-brake can drag and act up in about as many ways as a (mechanical) disc brake. The mechanics are a bit more exposed, that's all. If you want to do it on the cheap, keep the wheel, keep the brake - just get it fixed. And learn to use the durn thing too. It's pretty easy to stop a car by down shifting and using the hand brake too, but you don't see many people doing that, do you?
While I can see valid reasons to stick with a rim brake(if that's what you've got), or to choose a rim brake when starting from scratch, there just isn't much good cause to switch from disc to rim - apart from exercising your freedom of choice.

The brake listed in the spec sheet seems to be a fairly decent sort: MTBR on Hayes MX4

It'll make more sense, while keeping you a lot closer to your $100 goal simultaneously.
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Old 11-09-11, 03:14 AM
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Well the posts would have to be the opposite of inflammatory... so the feelings of charity and happiness would be giveth unto thee simply because of my irresistible personality being witnessed from time to time.


The disk brake noise isnt a constant rubbing...Something rubs once per orbit.

Im not sure what the big deal is with only using the back brake. I dont ride in the city and our bike path here is completely separate from traffic.




Ive never skidded once or slammed on my brakes ever. You can just slow down like a normal human being before hitting the brakes.


Anyways, after thinking about it and watching youtube videos, it seems pretty tedious to do what I want to. I'll try and save up for a hybrid bike I guess and sell this bike like was recommended to me originally.
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