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Show Your Vintage MTB Drop Bar Conversions

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Show Your Vintage MTB Drop Bar Conversions

Old 01-22-21, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Markeologist
Did this drop bar conversion on a Stumpjumper Sport in 1990 or so for my wife (I bought it new for her in 1986...though it might be an 85 model). She commuted on it for a couple years but then we bought a couple of XO-1s and hung up the Stumpjumper. Pulled it out of the rafters several weeks ago and cleaned it up with my daughter who has it now.
Is that a tall-can of beer in the bottle cage?
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Old 01-25-21, 01:40 PM
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some more even better pics






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Old 01-27-21, 04:35 AM
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1992 Trek 950 Singletrack conversion

Here's another of mine, building these up are a great winter project. I used the MicroShift 3x7 to match to the original Deore LX components, although the odd top-pull FD with the cable anchored directly to the frame was a little trickier to adjust correctly. It all works really well in the end and is a pretty good low-budget build. Some spacers on the threaded-to-threadless adapter are useless but make a good look too.



Last edited by pcons713; 01-27-21 at 05:27 AM.
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Old 01-27-21, 04:37 AM
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Amazing.
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Old 01-27-21, 04:42 AM
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This one looks so much fun
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Old 01-27-21, 04:42 AM
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Love the colors!
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Old 01-27-21, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Nokton
This is a c.1986 Diamond Back Apex that I saw in a Craiglist ad from St. Paul, Minnesota. I immediately fell in love with this bike and, since my brother lives in St. Paul, managed to get it shipped here to Nebraska. I'm not positive about the year, but the red is the original color and it has a Tange MTB frame and fork.

I wanted to make this my middle-class version of a Rivendell do-anything bike, so I swapped out the brakes for V-brakes, put on some Nitto Choco bars and changed to thumb shifters. I also got new wheels that I eventually put Serfas Drifter tires on and installed a Brooks saddle.

The first picture is as I re-assembled it out of the box, already converted to a touring bike.




It's a fun bike that I really enjoy. I'm starting another conversion that is going to be a mountain bike converted to a drop bar gravel bike. I posted about it here https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vintage/1142954-building-mountain-bike-drop-bar-conversion.html
Just found a red DB Apex as well, & I'm considering a drop bar conversion for it. Anything I should look out for?
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Old 01-27-21, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by pcons713
Here's another of mine, building these up are a great winter project. I used the MicroShift 3x7 to match to the original Deore LX components, although the odd top-pull FD with the cable anchored directly to the frame was a little trickier to adjust correctly. It all works really well in the end and is a pretty good low-budget build. Some spacers on the threaded-to-threadless adapter are useless but make a good look too.
Looks fantastic.
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Old 01-27-21, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by OutnBack
Just found a red DB Apex as well, & I'm considering a drop bar conversion for it. Anything I should look out for?
Be sure to check out this thread; Show Us Your Vintage Diamond Backs!
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Old 01-27-21, 02:41 PM
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Got one in the works, not ready to show yet but soon. 1989 Kona Cinder Cone w/dirt drops. Love the U brakes here.
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Old 01-31-21, 08:30 PM
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i really wish i saw this thread earlier. Built this few years back off of cheap Craigslist find. really loved everything about it, including all mistakes i made whist doing it and then some imbecile stole it locked in front of my building..

seeing so many beautiful builds here will go at it again.
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Old 02-02-21, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by bikemig
I've been working on this 1992 Stumpjumper for a while. It had a lot of scratches that I had to deal with. I used flat white rustoleum and then a model paint that was an OK match to the original color. I replaced the headset, cassette, and cantilevers but I was able to use the original derailleurs, crank, and wheels. I replaced the consumables. I like the gearing on old MTBs (46/36/24 and an 11-28 7 speed cassette). I'm running 26 x 1.9 continental top contact winter tires. They're good for mixed pavement/snow. I'll install some fenders as soon as I track down the right mounting bolt. I like the way the bike came out.
Looks good. I like the use of a '7' stem instead of a riser and am doing similar (after seeing this) with a similar frame. I wanted to have 2x9 gearing (46/30 with 11-42) but couldn't get the 46 chainring on the chainline (stays to wide) so settled for 48/36/26 with 11-36.
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Old 02-06-21, 10:58 AM
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I took a punt on this Verago frame last year. The size ctc is top tube 57.5 cm and seat tube 56 cm (22"). There are the remains of a "swiss hand-made" decal, but no tube identification. I think the seat tube is SPX (27.0 seatpost, 5 helical ribs at BB) and the others likely SP. The lug work is quite nice and original kit looks to have been XT from the early '90s. There is very little info on Verago ATB/MTBs other than one article on RetroBike and on Oldschool Racing. If anyone has more information I'd very much welcome finding out more. As shown transmission is 3x9 (48-36-26 with 11-36) (retro)friction shift of Exage FD and XTR RD. The Nitto stem and bars are pretty comfortable. The brake booster makes a big difference as the seat stays bend a lot under hard braking. The paintwork is black with lumpy white 'spatters', a bit of an acquired taste (cycle Artex).


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Old 02-06-21, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by esasjl
I took a punt on this Verago frame last year. The size ctc is top tube 57.5 cm and seat tube 56 cm (22"). There are the remains of a "swiss hand-made" decal, but no tube identification. I think the seat tube is SPX (27.0 seatpost, 5 helical ribs at BB) and the others likely SP.
FYI-I have a mountain bike with Cromor OR and it takes a 27.0 seat tube as well.
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Old 02-07-21, 05:31 AM
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Originally Posted by beicster
FYI-I have a mountain bike with Cromor OR and it takes a 27.0 seat tube as well.
Thanks, yes, this may well be a possibility as Cromor OR, SP and SPX have 0.7/1.0 28.6 seat tubes. I'm fairly sure about the seat tube being SPX because of the ribbed butt. The tubeset has standard road dimensions with top tube at 25.4 (no access to check for ribs) and the down tube is 28.6 with no ribs. I think Cromor OR is oversize (for road) with top tube at 28.6 and down tube at 31.7. I think Cromor OR has 25.4 unicrown fork blades, but this bike has 28.6 unicrown blades (653 All Terrain?) and 25.4 steerer with what looks like an Everest lug. It looks like this is a mixture of tubesets.
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Old 02-07-21, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by esasjl
Thanks, yes, this may well be a possibility as Cromor OR, SP and SPX have 0.7/1.0 28.6 seat tubes. I'm fairly sure about the seat tube being SPX because of the ribbed butt. The tubeset has standard road dimensions with top tube at 25.4 (no access to check for ribs) and the down tube is 28.6 with no ribs. I think Cromor OR is oversize (for road) with top tube at 28.6 and down tube at 31.7. I think Cromor OR has 25.4 unicrown fork blades, but this bike has 28.6 unicrown blades (653 All Terrain?) and 25.4 steerer with what looks like an Everest lug. It looks like this is a mixture of tubesets.
I'll measure the top and down tube on mine tomorrow and let you know. I know very little about the frame except that it has Cromor OR stickers on the seat tube and fork blade. Regardless, I like that bike. Looks like a good one.
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Old 02-07-21, 11:02 PM
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Salsa Dos Niner

My old Salsa Dos Niner, it rode like a quality hybrid and in this form I mostly used it to haul my todler son up the local mountain in a trailer, before this it had an upside down Velo Orange english 3 speed type bar and would later become a more boring flat bar Mountain bike, sadly stolen when my wife left the garage door open.
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Old 02-08-21, 03:37 PM
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Some really lovely bikes on here, congratulations and thanks to you all. Iím in the process of building up an eBay-bought Ď89 Raleigh Appalachian frameset (Reynolds 531 All Terrain) as a drop-bar tourer/gravel/utility bike. The intention was to use Ďin-stockí (in my garage) parts as much as possible. This is going pretty well, but I will be buying Nitto stem (MT-10) and bars (BA132AAF) and Maxxis DTH 2.15 tyres. Will post some pics as soon as Iíve got my post count up.
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Old 02-08-21, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by pcons713
Great to see this thread going strong after so many years, so I'll add in my contribution - conversion of a 1994 Giant Chaos. Little known frame but really quite nice with double butted tubes including stays and a threadless headset. I used MicroShift / MicroNew 3x7 shifters to match the original Deore LX drivetrain and they work perfectly. No issues with fit or handling with the super short stem (maybe 50mm). All around a great budget build (approx. 130 EUR all in), and these Schwalbe tires float over the gravel and endless cobblestones in Germany!
Iím curious about these tyres (Schwalbe Billy Bonkers). I saw them after ordering Maxxis DTHs and they appear to be similar (dirt jump tyre etc). Has anyone used both?
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Old 02-08-21, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by ElCani
Iím curious about these tyres (Schwalbe Billy Bonkers). I saw them after ordering Maxxis DTHs and they appear to be similar (dirt jump tyre etc). Has anyone used both?
Not me. The Billy Bonkers were 2nd on my want list but I got such a good deal on the DTH tires I couldn't pass them up.
Maybe I'll put a set of Billy Bonkers on my next 26er build.
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Old 02-09-21, 02:49 AM
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Originally Posted by esasjl
I took a punt on this Verago frame last year. The size ctc is top tube 57.5 cm and seat tube 56 cm (22"). There are the remains of a "swiss hand-made" decal, but no tube identification. I think the seat tube is SPX (27.0 seatpost, 5 helical ribs at BB) and the others likely SP. The lug work is quite nice and original kit looks to have been XT from the early '90s. There is very little info on Verago ATB/MTBs other than one article on RetroBike and on Oldschool Racing. If anyone has more information I'd very much welcome finding out more. As shown transmission is 3x9 (48-36-26 with 11-36) (retro)friction shift of Exage FD and XTR RD. The Nitto stem and bars are pretty comfortable. The brake booster makes a big difference as the seat stays bend a lot under hard braking. The paintwork is black with lumpy white 'spatters', a bit of an acquired taste (cycle Artex).
I like this a lot, it looks similar in size and geometry to the '89 Raleigh Appalachian I'm building.
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Old 02-09-21, 02:54 AM
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Originally Posted by CO_Hoya
Yep. The mid-80s MTBs seem to have been designed based upon contemporary touring bikes. Using a large-volume 26" tire (e.g. Compass RTP, Maxxis DTH) can bring the wheel diameter close to road-size.

Here's my winter commuter (I prefer a 59cm top tube):
I think this (the 22.5 Shogun with the RTP tyres) is my favourite bike on here. Everything just looks right.
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Old 02-09-21, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by esasjl
Thanks, yes, this may well be a possibility as Cromor OR, SP and SPX have 0.7/1.0 28.6 seat tubes. I'm fairly sure about the seat tube being SPX because of the ribbed butt. The tubeset has standard road dimensions with top tube at 25.4 (no access to check for ribs) and the down tube is 28.6 with no ribs. I think Cromor OR is oversize (for road) with top tube at 28.6 and down tube at 31.7. I think Cromor OR has 25.4 unicrown fork blades, but this bike has 28.6 unicrown blades (653 All Terrain?) and 25.4 steerer with what looks like an Everest lug. It looks like this is a mixture of tubesets.
Finally got a chance to measure the tubes (forgot the fork, though). The top and seat tubes were both 28.6 and the down tube was 31.7 (ish). My fork is not a unicrown.
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Old 02-09-21, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by ElCani
I like this a lot, it looks similar in size and geometry to the '89 Raleigh Appalachian I'm building.
I just looked up the Appalachian, very similar and a lot more colourful! Good luck with the build and look forward to seeing the pics.
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Old 02-09-21, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by beicster
Finally got a chance to measure the tubes (forgot the fork, though). The top and seat tubes were both 28.6 and the down tube was 31.7 (ish). My fork is not a unicrown.
Many thanks indeed, this is very helpful. I'm not sure why worrying about old steel tubes is so interesting, maybe it's just the times!
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