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Show Your Vintage MTB Drop Bar Conversions

Old 02-21-13, 12:15 PM
  #1026  
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I picked it up from a co-op in disrepair. I salvaged a few weird moderately upgraded parts off of it. I then traded it to the guy in Forest Hill. He was going to build it up. At least he found a fork for it! He got it from me sans fork beause it had a blown 700c suspension fork.

Originally Posted by Yo Spiff
So it IS yours, not just one like it? I picked it up from a guy in the Forest Hill area who buys and sells a lot of stuff on Craigslist. He always has some ads running. I think he's making at least a few extra $ at it. I wonder how many stops it made between you and I? When did you get rid of it?


It had some spots of surface rust here and there. Nothing a little rustoleum couldn't hide from all but a very close inspection.
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Old 02-21-13, 12:54 PM
  #1027  
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Originally Posted by realestvin7
I picked it up from a co-op in disrepair. I salvaged a few weird moderately upgraded parts off of it. I then traded it to the guy in Forest Hill. He was going to build it up. At least he found a fork for it! He got it from me sans fork beause it had a blown 700c suspension fork.
I can't see him building it up for himself, as it is way to short for him. I asked him about the fork, but he claimed he got the frame with that fork on it. It appears to be a fairly decent one. I also bought an STX crankset from him, intending it for this frame, but then found the black one at the recent swap meet at Rahr.
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Old 02-21-13, 01:11 PM
  #1028  
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Originally Posted by Yo Spiff
Nice, looks sharp. Those take 700c wheels, right?

I had a small Crosspoint pass through my hands a few years ago. I bought it cheap for the parts: nice Deore LX group w/ a 30/40/50 crankset (that I'm still using on my Miyata 210), Deore LX/Wolber GTX 700c touring wheelset. The frame was a really great looking british racing green, I wish it was larger.
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Old 02-21-13, 01:15 PM
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Be honest..That dude is a character. Am I right? Lol. He's a cool guy though and will always be there to take care of you if you make a good impression. I still talk to him every now and then.

Originally Posted by Yo Spiff
I can't see him building it up for himself, as it is way to short for him. I asked him about the fork, but he claimed he got the frame with that fork on it. It appears to be a fairly decent one. I also bought an STX crankset from him, intending it for this frame, but then found the black one at the recent swap meet at Rahr.
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Old 02-21-13, 01:41 PM
  #1030  
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Originally Posted by realestvin7
Be honest..That dude is a character. Am I right?
Yep, a bit of one. He likes to talk.

He was offering a Schwinn hybrid for $100 for a while and he kept renaming the CL advertisement each day. When he listed it as a 700c wheelset (that just happens to have a complete bike attached), I texted him on his creativity. When he messaged me back, I realized it was the same guy.
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Old 02-21-13, 09:32 PM
  #1031  
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+1 for the progress thus far

+1 for the Bianchi in the background

+2 Bonus points for the for the VHS tape collection... sweet!
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Old 02-21-13, 09:49 PM
  #1032  
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^

so has anybody used this stem? does it have a cut out on the bottom for curved bars? and does it not weigh a ton? they make it in pink too which might be good for my Jamis



https://www.ebay.com/itm/Black-ROAD-M...item3cce1ef44f
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Old 02-21-13, 09:51 PM
  #1033  
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Originally Posted by frantik
^

so has anybody used this stem? does it have a cut out on the bottom for curved bars? and does it not weigh a ton? they make it in pink too which might be good for my Jamis



https://www.ebay.com/itm/Black-ROAD-M...item3cce1ef44f
I'd stay away from it. Those cheapo Taiwanese cast stems scare the poop out of me. What reach and clamp diameter do you need?
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Old 02-21-13, 10:43 PM
  #1034  
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i use it daily. its all good
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Old 02-21-13, 11:17 PM
  #1035  
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Yea, I wouldn't worry about using it at all. You might be surprised on the weight too. I have a similar generic dirt drop stem that weighs less than my Nitto Technomic 60mm stem (360g vs 375g). The Nashbar quill stems with removable faceplates are even lighter, 320g for the 90mm (actual reach is shorter since it's angled).
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Old 02-22-13, 01:43 PM
  #1036  
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Okay, so what would BF C & V members do?

I have this 1984 Mongoose CrMo chromed frame & biplane fork in my size, and some parts- a probably toasted headset, a very good condition Takara triple 28-38-48) (170mm crankarms, an excellent condition bottom bracket, a 1985 Suntour XC FD, the original rear wheel with a decent condition Suntour 6 speed 14-28 hub, and the original Suntour canti brakeset and hardware. It's kind of a beast, weight-wise. It takes an .833/21.15 quill stem, which I do not have.



What would you folks do?

Velouria thinks I should build it up as an upright bike...but I already have a truly fine DL-1.

I do have a bunch of hills around here-this is the Santa Cruz Mountains, after all- so anything that climbs easy ought to help. Would you drop bar this sucka? Cost is very much a consideration in this case.
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Old 02-22-13, 02:00 PM
  #1037  
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Originally Posted by Creme Brulee
i use it daily. its all good
does it have cut outs to accept drop bars or only flat bars?
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Old 02-22-13, 02:05 PM
  #1038  
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Myself, on a new stem, I would get one with the removal face plate, for ease of installation/bar change, whatever, particularly if you are a tinkerer like I am. I seem to be routinely swapping out bars on the keeper fleet.

All that being said, I picked up a TBone MTB stem for my wife's bike, just because it had a Prestige OS label on it (I am a sucker for such things).
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Old 02-22-13, 02:08 PM
  #1039  
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saw this in the Feb 1988 Mountain Bike Magazine --> https://www.mtnbikehalloffame.com/pdf/feb_1988.pdf




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Old 02-22-13, 03:56 PM
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Saw this article about converting to drops in the Nov/Dec 1987 MTB Magazine.. decided to type it up https://www.mtnbikehalloffame.com/pdf/novdec_1987.pdf


Four years of riding road bikes made me uncomfortable with the Bullmoose bars on Gary Fisher mountain bike. It was fun to ride but I couldn't get used to my elbows flapping in the breeze. Then at the Wendell Fat Tire Weekend I saw Jacquie Phelan and the drop handlebars on her Cunningham.

To the uninitiated, component swapping is dangerous; to the experienced, pitfalls still abound, especially when switching flat bars for drops. Drop require a cable hanger and the correct bore to fit the bars. Pro mountain bike shops are scarce as hen's teeth here in the east so i called Point Reyes Bikes (415-663-1768) in California for more information on making the switch. They assured me that a Specialized MTB-3 stem would work.

For bake levers, I used Suntour Surperbe Pros. Bar end shifters could be used but since I already had SunTour XC thumb shifters, i decided to used them. I tried them above and and below the brake levers. Below seemed more comfortable, so I tightened all the bits, attached the cables and wrapped the bars with tape. I went for a test ride, returned, unwrapped the bars, move the levers and shifters, then re-wrapped the bars. Nobody said it would be easy.

Several weeks later, it was clear that the stem was not right for drop bars. Mountain bikes in the classic Fisher mold have longer top tubes than road bikes and require shorter stems. Since mountain bike frames are generally sized two to four inches smaller than road bike frames, their seatpost extension is much greater. In order to position the handlebars at about the level recommended by Bill Farrell's Fit it, a tall stem with minimal forward extension is required.

Riding own steep hills with drops and a short rise/long reach stem like the MTB-3 was almost impossible. My weight was entirely too far forward and my hands too low. I ordered a new, custom stem. Nothing else was available at the time with the correct bore, height and reach. Except my custom stem didn't have an expander at the bottom; instead it needed and extender silver soldered onto the steerer tube. I now had the right stem but couldn't put it on. Point Reyes once again helped out by suggesting use of a Nitto single expander. I also needed a cable hanger so I ordered on of those as well.

Finally, I had all of the pieces together and mounted on my bike with grabons for cushioning. Were the results worth all of the effort? Absolutely! With my hands on the drops, I'm in a more powerful position for hill climbing. On the road, aerodynamics are vastly better, especially in a headwind, while precise control while picking my way over single track is assured.

Since starting my experiments with drop bars, more products have become available. DirtDrop bars and stems are available from Bridgestone bicycle dealers. The bars are head treated 2017 T-4 cold forged aluminum in the standard 26mm diameter. They look like regular drop bars at first but in fact are flared out 12 degrees. The drops are also a little shorter so the bar end shifters are closer to the hands for easier shifting. The stem is about 5 inches tall with a reach of about 2 inches with an expander at the bottom. A cable stop is drilled in.

Ibis Cycles also has custom stems and a stand drop bar. Made of heat treated aluminum, the bars have a 7 degree flare and are modeled on Cinelli track bars. Ibis is also working on an index system bar end shifter. The stem is made of 4130 steel and requires a single expander or extension brazed on the steerer. Call them before you make up your mind about the size. A complete Ibis drop bar package retails for $175 and includes bars, stem, bar end shifters, and SunTour Superbe Pro levers. Bars alone are $45 and the stem is $85.

Wilderness Trail Bikes has the wildest looking bars. The have less drop and reach than normal drops and are flared out 25 degrees. They are the same heat treated aluminum with thicker walls as others. Their diameter is 26mm so all the bars fit any of the stems. their two piece stem is cromoly and made in custom dimensions. mark Slate says they have single expanders so you can get everything at once. They also have a very slick adapter system for SunTour XC shifters so you can brake and downshift at the same time. Bars cost $45, the stem is $120, and the shifter adapters are $20.
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Old 02-22-13, 04:39 PM
  #1041  
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And even more vintage drop bar goodness with our lady Jacquie











looks like she could probably still kick most of our butts!

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Old 02-22-13, 05:04 PM
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I recently picked up an old ibis Avion from that era at the flea market, tange prestige tubing, missing most of it's original stuff though.



How it's supposed to look :



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Old 02-22-13, 05:08 PM
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your look like it has a steeper head tube and is that a columbus sticker on the built up one? either way nice score and more and more i'm liking mtbs with drops and non-aero brakes.. makes me regret selling the dura ace ones i had recently
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Old 02-22-13, 05:08 PM
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I would be converting this one to drops. You have most of the parts already, .833 stems are easy to find, just do it.

Weight can be mitigated by choice of wheels and tires. And you are not building a race bike. See my earlier comments about putting my hefty Cimmaron on a diet, it came down nicely.

Originally Posted by Coreyk
I have this 1984 Mongoose CrMo chromed frame & biplane fork in my size, and some parts- a probably toasted headset, a very good condition Takara triple 28-38-48) (170mm crankarms, an excellent condition bottom bracket, a 1985 Suntour XC FD, the original rear wheel with a decent condition Suntour 6 speed 14-28 hub, and the original Suntour canti brakeset and hardware. It's kind of a beast, weight-wise. It takes an .833/21.15 quill stem, which I do not have.



What would you folks do?

Velouria thinks I should build it up as an upright bike...but I already have a truly fine DL-1.

I do have a bunch of hills around here-this is the Santa Cruz Mountains, after all- so anything that climbs easy ought to help. Would you drop bar this sucka? Cost is very much a consideration in this case.
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Old 02-22-13, 05:08 PM
  #1045  
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That's a sweet stem. Anybody know the maker?

Originally Posted by frantik
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Old 02-22-13, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by frantik
your look like it has a steeper head tube and is that a columbus sticker on the built up one? either way nice score and more and more i'm liking mtbs with drops and non-aero brakes.. makes me regret selling the dura ace ones i had recently
Same frame and fork and they are tange prestige tubing.
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Old 02-22-13, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by wrk101
I would be converting this one to drops. You have most of the parts already, .833 stems are easy to find, just do it.
+1. Nice bonus, especially if the TT is a little long for road bar use, is there are lots of 4-bolt BMX quills in that size with minimal extension - like 30-40mm type o' reach.
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Old 02-22-13, 05:17 PM
  #1048  
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Originally Posted by guzziee
Same frame and fork and they are tange prestige tubing.
Tange Prestige = my favorite. Hang onto that bike!
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Old 02-22-13, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by mainstreetexile
That's a sweet stem. Anybody know the maker?
It's an LD stem. Only way to find one now is to have someone make one. Those who have them rarely sell them. It'll set you back $100 or more to have one made. More if you find a legit used one.
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Old 02-22-13, 09:58 PM
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... d r o o l ...
I still live in fantasy land where one day I'll find that same Cunningham bike at a garage sale for chump change! <SHUT UP> I can dream can't I?!!! As far as that Cunningham LD stem, I've been after one for about 5 years... they do pop up but be ready to crucify your wallet! In the interim check out AEMMER's Ritchey pics, he seems to have the magic stash of stems!
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