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Is upgrading a nice old frame "bad?"

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Is upgrading a nice old frame "bad?"

Old 10-17-15, 09:05 AM
  #1  
Von Stively
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Is upgrading a nice old frame "bad?"

I ride a 1979 trek 710 full 531 bike. It's time to replace some drivetrain parts as they are old. Been riding it over a decade now.

I'm thinking of spreading the frame and doing a full upgrade. STI, new cranks, brakes, wheels. Even new shallow drop bars.

My question isn't one of value. The frame kicks ass and I can't afford a new frame set like this. I just like the bike and working on bikes and I think this thing would be nice upgraded.

My question for you classic minded guys is am I committing some sort of historic crime? I wrestle with selling this bike intact to a person who likes classics and getting something like a Soma ES almost weekly.
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Old 10-17-15, 09:11 AM
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Just don't cut off any braze ons and you have committed no crime. There is a thread on here that shows the multitude of updated frames. I have a Lejeune Champ du Monde frame that is 8spd Ergo. Before that I had a Merckx Corsa that was 9 spd Shimano. Others have done 10 and 11. You can always "backdate" it.
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Old 10-17-15, 09:21 AM
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Update the components and enjoy riding the bike.

The smartest thing I ever did, in terms of my riding pleasure, was to to upgrade a 40 year old Colnago with modern components. It has become my favorite ride.
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Old 10-17-15, 09:21 AM
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It's been done many times by many c&vers. It's your bike, make it the way you want it. This is my DeRosa SLX.


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Old 10-17-15, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Von Stively View Post
I ride a 1979 trek 710 full 531 bike. It's time to replace some drivetrain parts as they are old. Been riding it over a decade now.

I'm thinking of spreading the frame and doing a full upgrade. STI, new cranks, brakes, wheels. Even new shallow drop bars.

My question isn't one of value. The frame kicks ass and I can't afford a new frame set like this. I just like the bike and working on bikes and I think this thing would be nice upgraded.

My question for you classic minded guys is am I committing some sort of historic crime? I wrestle with selling this bike intact to a person who likes classics and getting something like a Soma ES almost weekly.
It's been done many times. Check out this C&V thread for ideas.
http://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vi...i-s-ergos.html
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Old 10-17-15, 09:27 AM
  #6  
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I agree, as long as what you do does not allow the bike to be restored back. you are doing a restomod. Keep all the original parts and update. that way some day down the road you can restore back.

I am toying with the idea at this time myself, I have a repainted and Single speed converted 1977 TX900 i picked up. That is missing most of all of its Campy NR components. so i was thinking i would use newer stuff (which i have) and get the bike going and then collect the Campy NR parts and then someday restore.
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Old 10-17-15, 09:42 AM
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Welcome to the forum.

My guess is you'll visit the retro roadie STI/Ergo thread and be more convinced.....hard not to be.

Upgrading vs buying new is a decision, but if you upgrade your bike the way you want it, well, it's yours.
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Old 10-17-15, 09:50 AM
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Upgrading vs buying new is a decision, but if you upgrade your bike the way you want it, well, it's yours.

words of a "wise" man!
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Old 10-17-15, 09:52 AM
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Do it. Great frame; why not run the parts you want?
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Old 10-17-15, 09:54 AM
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I think I'm the "worst offender". Not only do I mix and match components that I like willy-nilly, most of my bikes are 70's or 80's 120-126mm rear ends, I almost always spread them to 130mm (the horror!). I also often take a torch to them, add new braze-ons, and repaint (blasphemy!).

Now I do have an early 50's Rochet that will be restored this winter, that​ bike will be kept original. Gotta draw the line somewhere...
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Old 10-17-15, 11:58 AM
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Thanks for the link. I see I'm not the only guy who thinks that putting modern tech into a mature frame is good idea. I can get Tektro dual pivots either bolts or recessed nut. Any advantage to recessed?
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Old 10-17-15, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Von Stively View Post
Thanks for the link. I see I'm not the only guy who thinks that putting modern tech into a mature frame is good idea. I can get Tektro dual pivots either bolts or recessed nut. Any advantage to recessed?
No "advantage", frames are either made for recessed bolts or they are not. If you try to put a recessed bolt brake on a non-recessed frame, the bolts won't be long enough. You can usually do the opposite, however, if you happen to have a set of brakes that you want to use. If you're buying new ones, get the brakes that were made for the frame.
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Old 10-17-15, 12:36 PM
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Don't give it a 2nd thought. Updated my 1984 Raleigh Racing USA Competition with a Dura Ace 7800 10 speed group and this has become my favorite bike to ride. 4lbs heavier than my carbon Tarmac but more comfortable and just about as fast


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Old 10-17-15, 12:42 PM
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A 1979 Trek is never going to be a museum piece. Riding it is the best way to honor it. If upgrading makes it more desirable to ride, then it is a good thing to do.
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Old 10-17-15, 12:50 PM
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Sounds like a great idea. And if you want to go full Ultegra 11 speed group, I'm about to take off a group set from a brand new bike and would be happy to sell it, with or without wheels.
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Old 10-17-15, 01:24 PM
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I love the restomod bikes, that's going to be my first N+1 road bike. Just waiting on the right bike to show up locally on CL.
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Old 10-17-15, 01:50 PM
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Not riding the old frame is bad.
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Old 10-17-15, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by von stively
… ride a 1979 trek 710 full 531 bike. It's time to replace some drivetrain parts as they are old.
old doesn't necessarily mean bad. are there performance problems?
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Old 10-17-15, 03:30 PM
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Go for it.
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Old 10-17-15, 04:04 PM
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I wanted a longer wheel base with room for bigger tires. Found this 80/81 716 and the parts on it worked fine but I wanted a brifter bike so it became one. Before and after. Do as you wish with your bike, IMHO.



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Old 10-17-15, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by eschlwc View Post
old doesn't necessarily mean bad. are there performance problems?
I'm not touching that one.
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Old 10-17-15, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
I think I'm the "worst offender". Not only do I mix and match components that I like willy-nilly, most of my bikes are 70's or 80's 120-126mm rear ends, I almost always spread them to 130mm (the horror!). I also often take a torch to them, add new braze-ons, and repaint (blasphemy!).
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Old 10-17-15, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by yooperbiker View Post
A 1979 Trek is never going to be a museum piece.
I don't know about that.

It depends on how clean it is. A 710 frame is a really nice, quality frame with 531 frame/fork and stays.

As far as what's "bad." IMO, taking a REALLY clean frame and changing things that can't be changed back. Cutting stuff off, drilling into it, unwarranted painting...

Yes, it's "your" bike, you can do what you want to it. But at some point it won't be "your" bike. For all the "what kind of mystery frame" threads as we have here (and this is just one forum- and this is just the people that ask)- tons of ill advised stuff happens to bikes in the name of "it's mine."

Rather than taking "A" bike that's "yours" and making it into something that it's not- Chances are someone wants the bike you've got, and someone's got the bike you want. Get the bike you want instead of ****ing up a perfectly good bike.

NOW
- the idea of changing components isn't a "bad" thing because it's totally reversible. Hell, that breathes new life into an old bike.
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Old 10-17-15, 05:19 PM
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Riders have been upgrading their components for as long as bikes have been around. When I was a teenager in the 70's I don't recall anyone thinking twice about improving their bike or replacing a broken part with whatever made sense at the time.
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Old 10-17-15, 05:45 PM
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Back in the day some of the best bikes were sold as frames, with the expectation that the buyer would chose the components or the LBS would build the bike up as they saw fit . I think the designers of these frames would have thought it was nuts to worry about vintage parts on these frames 30 or 40 years later. These frames were made to be fitted with the best available components.

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