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First Post: flip flop wheels on a geared bike.

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First Post: flip flop wheels on a geared bike.

Old 07-22-16, 11:49 AM
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First Post: flip flop wheels on a geared bike.

Hello everyone!

Just joined up and this is my first post, please go lightly on me as I think this post could call for flaming but hopefully not.

Long story short... I just got into biking, and built a single speed out of a vintage peugeot frame and I love it, i didnt realize how much i would like long distance riding (i originally built it for commuting for fun) and ive been riding on average 40-50kms a ride

now the route i usually take allows me to ride my single speed pretty well as not to many hills, but id like to start exploring other routes and such so I wanted to get myself a geared bike.

I found a complete 10 speed peugeot 50 bucks (mint condition mostly) and looking to do a some upgrades, i found some inexpensive brifters used locally (i know ill need a new rear derailleur as well) i also wanted to upgrade the 27" wheels to some 700c wheels, and that is where my question comes in

Now i know these wheels arent 'great' but theyre inexpensive and look nice and im just trying to get into this bike for not too much money but id like it to also look nice, once i ride more maybe in a year or two ill invest in a nice carbon or butted aluminum bike.

could i take these wheels? (link below)


and remove the single speed gear free wheel, and add a different cassette for a multi speed bike? or will these wheels likely only work for single gear?

all insight and help is greatly appreciated!

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Old 07-22-16, 12:49 PM
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Hi @chaseyyz, welcome to the forum.

It's likely that the Retrospec wheels (with flip flop hub) will not work with a multi-speed freewheel. Are the 27" wheels in bad shape? If you like your Peugeot a lot, and are set on putting newer parts (brifters, 700c wheels, etc) on it, I would wait until you have a full "group" ready to go -- shifters/brifters, wheels, derailleurs, new chain, cables, etc. You can make the switch all at once, and avoid issues related to piecing it together.

That said, it may be better to learn to maintain and repair the original components on your (said: mint) Peugeot and *not* replace any parts on it.

Also, post some pictures up of what you're working on and you'll get more replies.
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Old 07-22-16, 02:35 PM
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Freewheels and cassettes are entirely different animals, and can't be used on the same hubs.
But you should be able to fit a multi-speed freewheel onto the hub of the SS wheel.
Trouble 1) you need to add/shuffle spacers around to get the smallest sprocket to clear the dropout.
Trouble 2) you'll need to redish the wheel to get the rim to center between the stays.
Trouble 3) is the axle/dropout spacing enough
Trouble 4) is the axle long enough
Trouble 5) if you want indexed shifting, good luck finding brifters that match a freewheel.
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Old 07-22-16, 02:56 PM
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If your mechanical skills are strong and you have a good understand of transmission incompatibilities, then you might be able to pull it off. If you don't have both of those things, you can't do this on the cheap.

If you want to replace the brake levers with Brifters, you must make sure the cog set you have will be compatible with the Brifters and the derailleur. As mentioned, you will have a tough time finding a cog set for a freewheel that will be compatible with most Brifters and even if you do, they will have to be seven speed, unless you can find an eight cog freewheel (I have one but it is the only one to ever come my way and using it presents its own durability set of problems).

As for a set of seven speed Brifters, these might fit the bill just right...

...but you still have lots to do to make it all work. Personally, I would just look for a good deal on a bike with the stuff you need. It will be cheaper in the long run.
"98% of the bikes I buy are projects".
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Old 07-22-16, 03:21 PM
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Thanks for the input so far guys.

Like i said before, i started with a old beat up peugeot i found cheap, stripped it down of everything possibly, cleaned, rebuilt it (with help from some buddies into bikes and a local bike shop network) and added some new components, 400km on it so far and its been a great bike, basically now making me addicted and now wanting more.

that set me out to search local classifieds now daily looking to score a deal and found another great bike for cheap.

the idea of 'brifters' wasn't set in stone, maybe just some ergo brake handles (like someone mentioned the idea of learning to work and maintain the current shifters now, which are stem is also a good idea and learning curve)

my plan was, new brake grips (possibly brifters if easy enough) , new brake calipers, replace all brake and shifter lines and ideally add some new wheels for some pizazz! (those retrospec wheels looked nice and cheap, i liked the color to compliment my bike and i have a thing for deep v wheels)

the idea of keeping the current 27's i suppose isnt fully off the table, but i did want a more new look wheel and spoke wise

had i done the brifters, my plan (or so i thought was possible) was to get a new cassette (do i have to keep it a 10 speed?) new rear derailleur, and replace all lines etc, i was under impression i could keep my peugeot chain wheels (i wanted to keep the peugeot look there) and the front derailleur would be ok too (though you can pick up new ones for pretty cheap at the local bike network)

brifters aren't seeming as easy as 'rj the bike guy' made it look in his video of turning back a fixed gear bike into a geared bike.

assuming i still want to go the brifter route, help as to what i should or shouldnt look for would be awesome. (ie wheels, shifters and cassette)

i get the idea of spending more money on a well put together bike, but i guess i enjoy the idea more of a project and having something i created/custom of my own

year or so down the line then ill play with the big boys and purchase a well sorted bike.

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Old 07-22-16, 04:09 PM
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Drive side pictures are more helpful, but that's a good start.

The condition of that bike is pretty amazing. Even so, I don't think it's a good candidate for sinking a lot of money into. I like putting modern parts on vintage bikes as much as anyone, but that bike is probably going to fight you in a couple of ways. You can do it, and obviously it's up to you how much it's worth, but I wouldn't go overboard with that one.

The first thing to figure out is rear dropout spacing. Read this: Bicycle Frame/Hub Spacing I'm guessing your bike has 120mm rear spacing. That would have to be changed to use more gears. For 6 or 7 speed rear wheels you'll want 126mm spacing. For 8/9/10/11 you'll want 130. If you re-space the rear dropouts to 130, you can get 130mm 700c wheels (the current standard) and make the used brifters you found work. We'd need to know what they are to offer more details. You'll probably need a new front derailleur as well as rear, but you can likely use the crankset you have.

When you switch to 700c wheels, you need brakes that reach a bit further. Usually centerpull brakes are great for this, but it looks like yours are near their limit. You should be able to find cheap replacements that work, or you could splurge for dual pivot caliper brakes like the Tektro R559 that will probably stop better anyway.
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Old 07-22-16, 06:14 PM
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Depending on the year (and I am not the person to ask) French bikes have a lot of French bike specific threading and sizing, which it more diffcult to replace parts.

I would recommend fixing that bike up (clean, lube, new cables, new brake pads) and riding it as is

For your next build you could do something like find a frame, and then get appropriate wheelset (checkout velomine) and then get a full group from one of the UK bike ships (assuming the deals in Canada from those are as good as there are in the US)
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Old 07-22-16, 06:55 PM
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Have you considered barcons instead of brifters?
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Old 07-23-16, 03:38 AM
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That bike isn't a great candidate for your project. It is a great candidate to tune up and ride the routes you want to do. Enjoy it for what it is.
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Old 07-23-16, 04:12 AM
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Yeah, straight gage, high-ten frame, stamped dropouts. Nothing wrong with it, but not the choice for a thousand-dollar gruppo.
Agree with the barcons.
If you get a such-a-deal on a wheelset, there shouldn't be a problem spreading the rear triangles to 126mm or 130mm. The former would let you use 7-sp freewheel or cassette, the latter up to 10sp cassette (though more than 9 is usually pointless)
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Old 07-23-16, 04:43 AM
What??? Only 2 wheels?
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Welcome to C&V!

+1 on what they said. Good bike but not a good candidate for the uber-bike you want to build.

I'd also suggest that you will see no significant difference between those wheels and 700c. Yes there are more tire choices for 700c but good 27" tires are available and each wheel wears only one tire at a time. A steel to alloy upgrade is worth doing but those look like alloy already. (Put a magnet to them to check, if you haven't already.)

If that bike were mine, I'd move the brake levers up the handlebar bends. I'd also rotate the handlebar so that the "ramps" are horizontal, but that's a personal preference. Some people like the drops horizontal. Both those changes would make the brakes easier to operate from the hoods. I would remove the kickstand, replace the saddle with my personal favorite (inexpensive WTB Speed V), put toe clips and straps on the pedals. I would probably remove the "safety levers" from the brake levers to obtain more lever travel. I'd swap out the stem shifters for DT shifters because that eliminates one section of housing for each cable. Can't tell from the pics what kind of derailleurs it has but if they work, keep them. If they don't work well, consider swapping the rear to a Suntour Vx-S or VGT-Luxe. If the rear spacing is a 6-speed (126mm), keep it. Even a 5-speed is decent enough if you aren't competing.

Beyond that there isn't much you can do to make it faster, or even feel faster. The most significant improvement will come from lighter wheels and tires but an upgrade to 700c by itself won't gain much.

Then I'd ride it! And keep looking for the upgrade bike. Half the fun is in the looking for frame and components.
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Old 07-23-16, 07:04 AM
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To be honest, buying new parts with the intention to kludge them heavily into compliance with what you want is rather foolish. Now, if you were to 'happen upon' some stuff and you try to make it work, then that's different.

If I were going to buy new wheels to brifter-up a bike, I'd go with a cassette hub intended for the application. Hell, I've done that to my touring bike, but have been having too much fun to put the brifters on!
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Old 07-23-16, 09:17 AM
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You would probably save a bunch of money just buying a used bike with gears.
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Old 07-23-16, 10:28 AM
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I would say fix it up and ride it pretty much as and you can take the time and money saved to start looking for a nice mid level bike used that already has 700c wheels fairly nice components with indexed gears they usually start in $200-250 range in most markets. As for the wheels if you decide to get another set I would suggest you go with a 6/7 set and new freewheel which could just be mounted without changes nice basic sets start around $100.
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