Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Bicycle Mechanics
Reload this Page >

Change gearing on 80s bike

Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

Change gearing on 80s bike

Old 07-22-13, 01:03 AM
  #1  
jsdavis
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 1,289
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 46 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Change gearing on 80s bike

I found a couple road bikes on Craigslist that look interesting but they are geared way too high for my liking. Some of them are like 52/42 or 53/39 crank with 6 or 7 speed 14-26 cassette which way too high for my hilly area.

What options do I have on something like this if I want to get the gearing down to about 30 gear inches? I am in a hilly area and the new bikes I've been testing are 50/34 cranks with 12-28 or 12-30 cassettes. The used bikes I've been looking at are mostly things like Panasonic, Miyata, Nishiki, Univega, etc. Can these bikes fit a triple crank of some sort - I don't see how else I could get the low gear down to my liking unless I can put a cassette with big 36 tooth gear or something like that.

Also how common are 27" tires? That's the other concern because until I started looking at these bikes I had no idea there is such a size.

Last edited by jsdavis; 07-22-13 at 01:08 AM.
jsdavis is offline  
Old 07-22-13, 05:37 AM
  #2  
Grand Bois
Senior Member
 
Grand Bois's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Pinole, CA, USA
Posts: 17,418
Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 428 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Panaracer Paselas are still made in 27" and they're good tires. The tan sidewalls look right on vintage bikes.

The Sugino XD2 is a good one for lowering you gearing without breaking the bank. I'm sure you can find it cheaper elsewhere.

http://www.rivbike.com/product-p/cr1.htm
Grand Bois is offline  
Old 07-22-13, 08:05 AM
  #3  
FBinNY 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: New Rochelle, NY
Posts: 36,019

Bikes: too many bikes from 1967 10s (5x2)Frejus to a Sumitomo Ti/Chorus aluminum 10s (10x2), plus one non-susp mtn bike I use as my commuter

Mentioned: 121 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4342 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Since you'll be limited to the 6-7 speed freewheels, you won't want to go to a wide range freewheel because the spacing gets too wide. The best option is to go with a triple crankset (need to replace bottom bracket also), to get the range you need without sacrificing spacing. Odds are you'll need a new front derailleur also, but those are cheap.

There probably will be some issues of RD capacity, but these are surmountable if you accept that your granny can only be used with the larger few rear sprockets. (be sure the chain is long enough to use the two biggest together even if you never intend to do so).
__________________
FB
Chain-L site

An ounce of diagnosis is worth a pound of cure.

“Never argue with an idiot. He will only bring you down to his level and beat you with experience.”, George Carlin

“One accurate measurement is worth a thousand expert opinions” - Adm Grace Murray Hopper - USN

WARNING, I'm from New York. Thin skinned people should maintain safe distance.
FBinNY is offline  
Old 07-22-13, 08:18 AM
  #4  
HillRider 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 31,479

Bikes: '''96 Litespeed Catalyst, '05 Litespeed Firenze, '06 Litespeed Tuscany, '12 Surly Pacer, All are 3x8,9 or 10. It is hilly around here!

Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1143 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 24 Times in 22 Posts
Consider the cost of a new crank and bottom bracket and the limited range of available 6-speed freewheels before buying one of the CL bikes. A newer, better suited bike may be a wiser financial choice.
HillRider is offline  
Old 07-22-13, 08:36 AM
  #5  
mgb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Pacifica, California
Posts: 85

Bikes: 1983 Schwinn Super Sport

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
My 83 Schwinn (Panasonic made) came with a 52/42 110 BCD Sugino crankset. It was a simple matter to change the 42 to a 36 and the 52/36 shifted fine with no other changes. I think you could get down to a 34 tooth.
mgb is offline  
Old 07-22-13, 05:55 PM
  #6  
sreten
Banned.
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Brighton UK
Posts: 1,662

Bikes: 20" Folder, Road Bike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Hi,

I'm 50+ and ride a bike with a 52/42 front and a 7 speed 14 to 28 freewheel.
Very old hat by modern standards but I manage most hills on the down to 40"
bottom gear, but I generally avoid really vicious inclines, I don't like them at all.

Thankfully road builders don't like inclines much either and in the
UK roads will generally wind around a bit to be as flat as possible.

Out of the saddle is your low gear, but I'm practising hard staying in the saddle on
hills. For real hills I'll have to practise standing much more, not yet in my plans.

rgds, sreten.

Lower gearing is probably better for being competitive, and staying
in the saddle but I'd say for fitness it doesn't really matter that
much, out of the saddle is good for using muscles differently.

Last edited by sreten; 07-22-13 at 06:38 PM.
sreten is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Germanicus
Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational)
7
10-11-10 12:41 PM
damocles1
Road Cycling
3
08-10-08 06:14 PM
Fredo0709
Road Cycling
7
06-04-08 12:08 PM
Anirudh D
Bicycle Mechanics
2
01-02-06 12:58 AM

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


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.