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Show Your Vintage MTB Drop Bar Conversions

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Show Your Vintage MTB Drop Bar Conversions

Old 12-23-18, 10:54 AM
  #6326  
Kdogbikes
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3speed, previous owner had the work done. The frame and fork was listed on cl for quite awhile before I took a chance on it.
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Old 12-30-18, 09:34 AM
  #6327  
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I picked up a Nishiki Ariel the other day. Its the elevated chainstay model, a 19.5" frame with a 22.5" top tube, which is about right for me on a road bike. Looks like it will take 2.35 tires with room for fenders with a short "effective" chainstay leangth. I have a pseudo LD quill stem the will get the bars up abit so that there's a 1 1/2" of drop, and the distance from the top of the seat post to the stem/handlebar connection is also about the same as my road bike.
I figure with the 1 1/12" drop and my "conditioning" level I will want to ride primarily on the handlebar hoods. I was thinking that the 52mm Nitto RM-013 Dirt Drop bars might be a good match. I've got a set of barends and a set of command shifters to choose from. The bike will see 80% rural pavement/chipseal and 20% gravel and occasional logging roads. For tires I was going to go with Maxxis 2.35 DTH's. I'll try and get some pictures up. This bike's forth in line right now so I'm this is very much a request for suggestions for the planning and parts gathering process.
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Old 12-30-18, 02:03 PM
  #6328  
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Here it is after a "successful" test ride. The bars might be a little short and a little narrow, but I'll probably use them for round one. The guy I got it from had had it serviced and then didnt realy ride it again, so it looks to have new stainless brake cables, so i didn't just cut them off for the experiment.
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Old 12-30-18, 02:04 PM
  #6329  
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Old 12-30-18, 02:06 PM
  #6330  
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Should have held a ruler up but there's plenty of clearance for fat tires and fenders.
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Old 12-30-18, 02:22 PM
  #6331  
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And here's a little ghetto lightbox geometry comparison. If it works out the bike may be dubbed the PFB



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Old 01-09-19, 09:56 PM
  #6332  
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Schwinn Dropbar



Probably my favorite ride. Mid 80ís Schwinn Mtb that started as a 5.00 frame set at a swap meet. Here it is in front of the Alamo by the Christmas tree.
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Old 01-10-19, 04:23 AM
  #6333  
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Originally Posted by imabeliever1 View Post


Probably my favorite ride. Mid 80ís Schwinn Mtb that started as a 5.00 frame set at a swap meet. Here it is in front of the Alamo by the Christmas tree.

Thats lovely. I can't place which Schwinn that would be -- not say it isn't, but I've owned quite a few of that era and the fork crown + long rear triangle + slight BB drop is throwing me off. Totally ideal candidate for what you're doing, and not too far from my '85 Cimmarron build in the works.
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Old 01-10-19, 04:28 AM
  #6334  
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Originally Posted by imabeliever1 View Post


Probably my favorite ride. Mid 80ís Schwinn Mtb that started as a 5.00 frame set at a swap meet. Here it is in front of the Alamo by the Christmas tree.
Answered my own question -- 1984 High Sierra!
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Old 01-11-19, 08:25 AM
  #6335  
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You are correct. High Sierra.
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Old 01-13-19, 10:15 PM
  #6336  
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CL Find Stumpjumper Sport

I've been looking for a donor, found a complete conversion. Set the seat back, raised the post, back from the first ditch bank ride...
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Old 01-13-19, 10:54 PM
  #6337  
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I've got that sierras twin, even the same tires. It's my favorite bike too. Still trying to figure out why.

Here it is when I first put it together 6 yrs back
https://www.bikeforums.net/15197181-post817.html


Originally Posted by imabeliever1 View Post


Probably my favorite ride. Mid 80ís Schwinn Mtb that started as a 5.00 frame set at a swap meet. Here it is in front of the Alamo by the Christmas tree.
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Old 01-20-19, 10:31 PM
  #6338  
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Concorde 105

Been meaning to post this one for a while but kept forgetting. Scooped this butted Tange Concorde frame from the local bike co-op for around $20, built it up for a friend, with 5800 shifters & derailleurs, CX70 crankset, Alex DM18 hoops on Deore hubs. It's been on some epic adventures & a super fun ride apparently. I like that all the cabling is run along the top tube, it's what made this frame catch my eye originally

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Old 01-21-19, 07:51 AM
  #6339  
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I love the color of that Concorde.
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Old 01-21-19, 11:46 AM
  #6340  
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Originally Posted by biketroubadour View Post
Been meaning to post this one for a while but kept forgetting. Scooped this butted Tange Concorde frame from the local bike co-op for around $20, built it up for a friend, with 5800 shifters & derailleurs, CX70 crankset, Alex DM18 hoops on Deore hubs. It's been on some epic adventures & a super fun ride apparently. I like that all the cabling is run along the top tube, it's what made this frame catch my eye originally
Fantastic!
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Old 01-21-19, 12:26 PM
  #6341  
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Originally Posted by beicster View Post
I love the color of that Concorde.
Me too! And the work on the build is nicely done as well.
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Old 01-21-19, 08:04 PM
  #6342  
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Started the conversion last week to 8sp rear+600 brifters, drops, conversion stem... Reduced cranks from triple to double. Will do brakes, hopefully, Wednesday morning. Tange 5 with CroMo fork. Paint is beat to heck, I surely don't mind: Nothing special but I like the way it fits and it's the perfect foul-weather beater/commuter.
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Old 01-24-19, 08:26 AM
  #6343  
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Been checking this thread for ages, awesome conversions everyone.

If it is not OT here, I might ask for advice, since I'm in the process of converting early 90s mtb to drop bars.
The issue is about the front derailleur, I have 3x7 road STIs (RSX) ready for this, and would love not to lose any chainring. So far it is - those 3x7 STIs, FD-M561 front derailleur (31.8, cable comes from the top), and crankset is not decided yet, got plenty to choose from.
From what I have read, road STIs have different cable pull for the front derailleur (same for rear one) than mtb STIs, therefore if I just connect it the way it is, it won't be possible to reach one part of the crankset. Using road tripple cranks won't help (?). Has anyone gone through the same with any simple sollution?
From what I understand, it seems that
- I can find a road fd (needing less cable pull), which seems unlikely because of the 31.8 and cable from the top. Or are there any?
- I can connect it the way it is and make it 2x7, with both clicks on STIs needed for each shift. Easiest, but would prefer not to do this.
- I can try to customize the FD somehow - have seen some pictures, but still pretty unsure how and if I can make it.

Am I missing any option, or an easy but still reliable fix?

Thanks for ideas in advance, got about a week to think about this, then I'll have some time to play with the conversion, post pics and such .)
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Old 01-24-19, 02:14 PM
  #6344  
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Originally Posted by Aww View Post
Been checking this thread for ages, awesome conversions everyone.

If it is not OT here, I might ask for advice, since I'm in the process of converting early 90s mtb to drop bars.
The issue is about the front derailleur, I have 3x7 road STIs (RSX) ready for this, and would love not to lose any chainring. So far it is - those 3x7 STIs, FD-M561 front derailleur (31.8, cable comes from the top), and crankset is not decided yet, got plenty to choose from.
From what I have read, road STIs have different cable pull for the front derailleur (same for rear one) than mtb STIs, therefore if I just connect it the way it is, it won't be possible to reach one part of the crankset. Using road tripple cranks won't help (?). Has anyone gone through the same with any simple sollution?
From what I understand, it seems that
- I can find a road fd (needing less cable pull), which seems unlikely because of the 31.8 and cable from the top. Or are there any?
- I can connect it the way it is and make it 2x7, with both clicks on STIs needed for each shift. Easiest, but would prefer not to do this.
- I can try to customize the FD somehow - have seen some pictures, but still pretty unsure how and if I can make it.

Am I missing any option, or an easy but still reliable fix?

Thanks for ideas in advance, got about a week to think about this, then I'll have some time to play with the conversion, post pics and such .)
I'm in the process of putting brifters on an old 2002 Trek 7500FX. The frame is an American-made Alpha SL MTB geometry that weighs only 3.63 lbs. The front derailleur is a mountain bike style top pull. I have an old road 3x derailleur I want to use, and bought a pulley from Problem Solvers that can reverse the direction of the cable pull. I'll let you know if it works... It should be happening very soon.
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Old 01-24-19, 02:35 PM
  #6345  
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Originally Posted by Aww View Post
Been checking this thread for ages, awesome conversions everyone.

If it is not OT here, I might ask for advice, since I'm in the process of converting early 90s mtb to drop bars.
The issue is about the front derailleur, I have 3x7 road STIs (RSX) ready for this, and would love not to lose any chainring. So far it is - those 3x7 STIs, FD-M561 front derailleur (31.8, cable comes from the top), and crankset is not decided yet, got plenty to choose from.
From what I have read, road STIs have different cable pull for the front derailleur (same for rear one) than mtb STIs, therefore if I just connect it the way it is, it won't be possible to reach one part of the crankset. Using road tripple cranks won't help (?). Has anyone gone through the same with any simple sollution?
From what I understand, it seems that
- I can find a road fd (needing less cable pull), which seems unlikely because of the 31.8 and cable from the top. Or are there any?
- I can connect it the way it is and make it 2x7, with both clicks on STIs needed for each shift. Easiest, but would prefer not to do this.
- I can try to customize the FD somehow - have seen some pictures, but still pretty unsure how and if I can make it.

Am I missing any option, or an easy but still reliable fix?

Thanks for ideas in advance, got about a week to think about this, then I'll have some time to play with the conversion, post pics and such .)
I was able to use my 3x7 Deore LX top pull with Microshift STI shifters. The bike has changed since I posted the photo, but it is post #6085. The front shifter had a correction (extra click) and I had to have it on the first click when tightening the cable. I don't know if your RSX are similar.
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Old 01-25-19, 04:13 AM
  #6346  
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Thank you both for advice, going to spend some days just considering options.
The thing is that I can see it being my first drop bar conversion, so in the end I might even go for the easiest possible way, making it 2x7, but we'll see. Will post pics once it is finished.
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Old 01-25-19, 11:06 AM
  #6347  
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Originally Posted by katsup View Post
I was able to use my 3x7 Deore LX top pull with Microshift STI shifters. The bike has changed since I posted the photo, but it is post #6085. The front shifter had a correction (extra click) and I had to have it on the first click when tightening the cable. I don't know if your RSX are similar.
What was the symptom you had that led you to the single click setup fix? I can't get my FD to extend enough and the current idea is a narrower BB. I can shift into that gear just fine but with the limit screw all the way out and I'm on small (rear) to big (front) the chain rubs (fd not extending enough). If I press on the brifter more it will, with the limit screw all the way out, easily pull enough cable (beyond the final click). It's just not indexing with enough pull. It kinda seems like this might be the key for my setup (XT fd) but I'll have to get it on the work stand and spend some more time with it.
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Old 01-25-19, 02:50 PM
  #6348  
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Originally Posted by alecjahn View Post
What was the symptom you had that led you to the single click setup fix? I can't get my FD to extend enough and the current idea is a narrower BB. I can shift into that gear just fine but with the limit screw all the way out and I'm on small (rear) to big (front) the chain rubs (fd not extending enough). If I press on the brifter more it will, with the limit screw all the way out, easily pull enough cable (beyond the final click). It's just not indexing with enough pull. It kinda seems like this might be the key for my setup (XT fd) but I'll have to get it on the work stand and spend some more time with it.
It took two shifts to get from the small chain ring to the middle. I don't remember having trouble shifting from middle to large. I use the same shifters on a bottom pull DX front derailleur on my 520.
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Old 01-25-19, 04:27 PM
  #6349  
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Originally Posted by Aww View Post
Thank you both for advice, going to spend some days just considering options.
The thing is that I can see it being my first drop bar conversion, so in the end I might even go for the easiest possible way, making it 2x7, but we'll see. Will post pics once it is finished.
Have you tried making the road shifters and MTB front derailleur work? Sometimes it all comes together to work out even though the interwebs say otherwise. Front derailleurs are pretty simple devices. It's worth a shot.
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Old 01-25-19, 06:39 PM
  #6350  
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Originally Posted by tricky View Post
Have you tried making the road shifters and MTB front derailleur work? Sometimes it all comes together to work out even though the interwebs say otherwise. Front derailleurs are pretty simple devices. It's worth a shot.
Ye, I have, but just to put it together and check if I want to ride this, with 3x8 Sora shifters that time (well, different setup overall). Had issues with getting the FD to not to touch chain at big chainring/small wheel, or one of the smaller ones. But you are correct, it is worth a try, there is still time to make it into perfection. At the moment, I'm not having all the parts on the same place as the bike is, so in a week or two, I'll just try to put it all together and we'll see .)

Last edited by Aww; 01-25-19 at 06:43 PM.
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