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Building a new bike from scratch and would love advice!

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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

Building a new bike from scratch and would love advice!

Old 09-10-11, 09:15 PM
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webgeek
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Building a new bike from scratch and would love advice!

Hi all; I love to ride bikes. As a kid I was always on my bike. As an adult I stopped riding until I got my wife a bike (eZip Trailz) for her birthday. I've used it FAR more than her and it's clear I need to get my own bike. A few years ago, I built a nice delta trike from plans at atomiczombie.com but it's simply too wide to ride it where I'd like to go and so it sits in the garage wasting away. Based on those experiences, I've figured out things I expect in my bike:

1) Must be super reliable - I want to get up and go when I feel like it, no mucking about.
2) Must be convenient to use for errands. I really like using the bike a few times a week for groceries and such. This means the bike needs a good way to haul a little bit. Panniers and/or a rear bag system of some sort.
3) Must not go flat - this irritates me to no end and relates to point 1.
4) Built to last forever - I expect this bike to last me for many years and am willing to pay a premium to get that.
5) Must be multi-purpose. Most of my riding is streets and paved trails but it's rough enough that tiny street tires would be dangerous. I need the bike to be some sort of hybrid that can handle many different uses. I understand this sacrifices things like top speed and such and that's ok.
6) Must have great brakes. The wife's bike has crap brakes and it bugs me a lot.

Now my intent is to build the bike from parts, picking and choosing each part as I go. This is part of the fun for me. Additionally, you value nothing as much as something you made with your hands and I believe this will get me riding more often. I do plan on making it electric as that's just too much fun to pass up but I can take care of that myself, no problem.

What I would love advice on is the frame itself. I've read a lot that says I should be using a road frame, but I really dislike the hard bent-over riding position. I didn't like it as a kid and I don't like it as an adult. I prefer being more upright and looking around. The eZip Trails riding position I find very comfortable for instance.

So all that typing to ask such a simple question... Based on my upright riding preference and my requirements above, what is a good frame/style to go with? I'd have thought mountain bike but I see that the sticky in this forum recommends road bike instead. I've also heard that rear-suspension doesn't work with saddle bags. At this point, all of my reading has just confused me more.

Thanks in advance for any advice and help!

-Mike
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Old 09-10-11, 09:34 PM
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Lots of frame options. One that you might consider is the Surly Troll. Steel frame. Designed with all the mounting options you'll need for rack and fenders and paniers. There's even a trailer option, if you want it. There's room for mountain-bike tires, and possibly even 29er wheels. (Not sure about the 29er wheels).

Buy tires w/flat protection to avoid flats. Schwalbe makes several tire models that are flat-resistant.

There are other frame options. The Troll is just one that came to mind as I read your requirements.
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Old 09-10-11, 11:29 PM
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I'd consider a Soma DoubleCross Disc frame/fork. That covers the reliable, lasts forever (framesaver it before building), strong brakes, multi-purpose, and hauling capacity (racks and panniers).

If you don't want to fiddle about with anything when starting off, get a dynohub wheel and lighting. Never worry about batteries again.
For nearly flat-proof riding, run a set of Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires in 37 or 40mm width. Throw some fenders over 'em so you don't get road gnarlies spraying at you in the rain.

You don't need to put drops on it just because it's a CX frame. Put a taller rise stem like a Profile Aris 25-degree or a Velo-Orange 17-degree on there and get some moustache or porteur handlebars that set you up with a nice upright riding position. Cap off the seatpost with a springer model leather saddle, and you've got a comfortable and indestructable ride.
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Old 09-11-11, 05:47 AM
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For even more reliability, go with a belt-driven system and a rear IGH.

For reference, a Civia Highland would be nearly ideal: Internally-geared hub, belt drive, generator headlight, disc brakes, plenty of carrying ability....

https://civiacycles.com/bikes/hyland/
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Old 09-11-11, 06:26 AM
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Of course you didn't mention a price range. I would suggest a Surly Cross Check or Soma Double Cross on the low end,a Rivendell Hilborne or Homer Hilson on the high end.
Electric? Yuck! What's the point?

Marc
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Old 09-11-11, 08:06 AM
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I would reco a used frame with cantilever brake studs, such as an non-suspended/rigid MTB, hybrid, cross, or tourer. That would give you the most flexibility to do what your looking to do. Building up a bike is really only cost effective if you are using mostly used parts. If you are mechanically inclined, any decent bike should be reliable. If you want electric, just by a scooter.
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Old 09-11-11, 08:31 AM
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I would go for disc brakes for sure, if you want good brakes. I have 3 bikes, one with coaster brakes, one with disc brakes, one with cantilever brakes. The disc brakes are the nicest in my opinion.

If you want an upright position and you're going to make it electric, I would think that you could get pretty much anything that struck your fancy. Efficiency of pedaling won't matter much if it's electric. I would personally probably go for a European-style city bike frame. Comfy upright position, not made to go fast but who cares if you have a motor on there. I'm no expert though, so take my opinion with a grain of salt!
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Old 09-11-11, 11:42 AM
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Hi all; thanks for the amazing amount of info. You guys are great! I've tried to go through all the posts and address as many comments as I can. My responses are out of order to original posts in an attempt to make for easier reading.

Originally Posted by mikehattan
Building up a bike is really only cost effective if you are using mostly used parts.
Cost effective isn't a huge concern for this project. I'm planning on spending more than a solid "off-the-shelf" bike would cost to get exactly what I want. There is value to me in making it my dream bike rather than finding a good bike and molding my dream around it. This lets me be as picky as I can be with an understanding of every decision made in the bike. Additionally, I like the idea of assembling every piece of it myself. This is part of the experience for me and worth some cost.

Originally Posted by JonathanGennick
One that you might consider is the Surly Troll.
Wow, I really like the Troll. I'm just a sucker for the MTB shape to be honest. I also see lots of people online seem to think it's a good multi-purpose frame and it's ridiculously flexible with mounting options. There are several commuter threads here on this site alone based on that frame. Only downside is that it only supports 26" wheels though I see I can squeeze 700c's in there and still get fenders on it.

Originally Posted by CliftonGK1
I'd consider a Soma DoubleCross Disc frame/fork.
Originally Posted by irwin7638
Surly Cross Check or Soma Double Cross
Those are great frames. My concern though (and please correct me if I'm wrong) is that the rear seat is pretty high at a minimum, then you have to raise the handlebars even higher to get the more relaxed posture. Doesn't this make for a very tall bike considering my rather short height (5'9")? I do like that it supports larger wheels for sure.

Originally Posted by Spudd
I would personally probably go for a European-style city bike frame.
I'm sorry, I'm not familiar with that style. Are there some specific bike frames or bikes online that show what you are describing?

Originally Posted by JonathanGennick
Schwalbe makes several tire models that are flat-resistant.
Originally Posted by CliftonGK1
For nearly flat-proof riding, run a set of Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires in 37 or 40mm width.
Ha, easy enough. I used some Schwalbe tires on my delta trike and was pleased with em though they were not as high end as the ones you guys are suggesting.

Originally Posted by CliftonGK1
framesaver it before building
Ah, I've never heard of doing that to a bike. Makes perfect sense though. I have a large CNC milling machine and it's liberally coated with this: LPS3 Heavy Duty Rust Inhibitor which I imagine is just a more industrial version of the stuff you buy for bikes. It "dries" on almost like liquid wax and seems to adhere to surfaces without being tacky - pretty neat stuff.

Originally Posted by CliftonGK1
get a dynohub wheel and lighting. Never worry about batteries again.
I had been planning on doing this as it seemed like a good idea for lights. I should have called that out in my post. Great catch!

Originally Posted by RichardGlover
For even more reliability, go with a belt-driven system and a rear IGH.
Without getting too much into it, the internally geared hubs are not tough enough to take the torque of a electric assist running through the bottom bracket via freewheel (several posts to this effect on endless-sphere.com forums. I'd LOVE to use a belt but it's only useful in a single-speed or IGH and I want gears + reliable/durable. This was actually my initial design plan, Alfine hub with belt drive, before I found reports of stripping the IGH.

Originally Posted by Spudd
I would go for disc brakes for sure, if you want good brakes.
This was my plan - both front and rear disc. Hydraulic or not is the current question. I used Avid BB7s on my trike and they were pretty good though adjustment with long cables was a bit of a hassle. Hydraulic is a pain to set up but I'm comfortable with bleeding and everything I've read implies they are really solid once properly configured.

Originally Posted by irwin7638
Electric? Yuck! What's the point?
Originally Posted by mikehattan
If you want electric, just by a scooter.
I'm certainly not going to try and convince anyone to go electric-assist or not here on this forum. The choice for me is pretty simple. I want a legit car replacement for small/short (<10 miles roundtrip) errands that's also fun. A pure pedal bike is a bit tough for me exclusively as I'd end up sweating like a pig at the end of several trips I commonly do because of a few very long hills right by my house. Using the motor while pedaling makes these hills far less unpleasant and gets me on the bike more often - which is the whole point. Additionally, being able to cross intersections quickly from a stop is far safer (in my mind) than having to slowly build speed pedaling across them. In short, I pedal most of the time but I enjoy the burst of power from an electric motor at times. It's not like I'm building a motorcycle here.

This is a picture of the general idea I'll be using for the electric assist:
https://endless-sphere.com/forums/dow...5969&mode=view
For reference, that specific design with the motor (you can just see the edge of the motor can on the right side) is capable of doing 6000 watts or so of power. That's enough to flip the bike over via the real wheel if it were locked in place. The trick though is that it's applied through the BB so you basically get as much assistance as you want. Full on throttle and it's driving you. A little throttle while peddling and it's helping you. No throttle and it's freewheeling so there is no significant drag. The huge downside though is that this realistically limits you to only a single gear up front. I'm actually trying to work some around this with some machining but I've not solved it yet.

Thank you to everyone for the huge amount of information and advice!

-Mike
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Old 09-11-11, 09:02 PM
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I ride a Surly LHT with Schwalbe tires(26") and love it, I built the bike so it is obviously not stock. The journey may be more expensive but well worth it in my opinion. They now have an LHT with disc brakes although I have no prob with my v brakes.
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Old 09-11-11, 10:16 PM
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Get a good reference book - Road Bike Maintenance is a good start

Use the Web cycling mechanic BB threads a lot.

Read the individual instructions for each part at least twice

Do not try to assemble parts or wrap handlebars after consuming celebratory (yay the bike's nearly finished!) alcohol.

Crankshaft bolts are particularly important -- they do not go in the way you expect. Usually the one goes in clockwise and the other side goes in counter clockwise. Screw it wrong and you're really screwed (cross-threaded).

Be careful with brakes and their spring-loaded, well, spring thingys. They can be easy to 'eff up. Pay double attention to the instructions.

Get some torque wrenches.

If you are a clyde, consider some custom-built wheels.

Have fun and take your time over the winter. Patience is everything for newb bike building.

Get an LBS to ream your head tube and assemble the fork/handlebars, and also to ream and face your bottom bracket shell. Those are expensive tools for a one time job that you could easily 'eff up yourself.


Measure three times, cut once.
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Old 09-11-11, 10:22 PM
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Ha, thanks for all the good advice, I'll check those things out. With that said, I'm reasonably comfortable with building a bike already, it's pretty basic stuff. I build one of these a few years ago:
https://www.atomiczombie.com/product/...olf/large1.jpg

What's given me the most trouble is wading through the incredible amount of biking-specific jargon and vendor items to figure out what is high quality, correct for me, etc. On the trike, I just snagged middle of the road Shimano running gear and Avid BB7 brakes while welding and cutting everything else as needed. I want some serious quality on this one and that's where all of you have been so helpful. Thanks!

-Mike
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Old 09-13-11, 04:04 PM
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This is what I mean by a European-style city bike, as an example:
https://www.skeppshultbikes.com/MENNATGRN800.jpg
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Old 09-14-11, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by webgeek View Post
1) Must be super reliable - I want to get up and go when I feel like it, no mucking about.
2) Must be convenient to use for errands. I really like using the bike a few times a week for groceries and such. This means the bike needs a good way to haul a little bit. Panniers and/or a rear bag system of some sort.
3) Must not go flat - this irritates me to no end and relates to point 1.
4) Built to last forever - I expect this bike to last me for many years and am willing to pay a premium to get that.
5) Must be multi-purpose. Most of my riding is streets and paved trails but it's rough enough that tiny street tires would be dangerous. I need the bike to be some sort of hybrid that can handle many different uses. I understand this sacrifices things like top speed and such and that's ok.
6) Must have great brakes. The wife's bike has crap brakes and it bugs me a lot.
Congratrulations!

The bike you say you want to build is already being built today and one can be built to your exact order for a very reasonable price.

For light duty use........
https://worksmancycles.com/shopsite_s...ml/page63.html

For heavy duty last forever use......
https://worksmancycles.com/shopsite_s.../cruisers.html


Warning!! There are a few members here that have an ax to grind with this brand of bicycle. They will seek to discourage you from even considering this brand but all anyone can ask is look at the brand fairly since it's a very good American made product.
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I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

Originally Posted by krazygluon
Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

Last edited by Nightshade; 09-14-11 at 11:42 AM.
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Old 09-14-11, 12:52 PM
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CliftonGK1
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Originally Posted by Nightshade View Post
Warning!! There are a few members here that have an ax to grind with this brand of bicycle. They will seek to discourage you from even considering this brand but all anyone can ask is look at the brand fairly since it's a very good American made product.
I'll join that group, and I'll give solid reasoning behind it.
One of the specifications the OP requires is great braking. Both versions you linked to stock with a single coaster brake. With the exception of pushrod/pan brakes, or maybe the Fred Flintstone, coasters are the worst brakes you can get. Low power, and on long descents they're prone to overheating which renders them useless (leaving the pilot totally brakeless unless they opted for the front drum brake, which is actually a good brake.)

Both stock with steel rims, meaning even if they are drilled to accept rim brakes, they are effectively useless; especially if it rains. We don't know how much rain the OP expects (location not listed) but he does mention long hills near his home, making that coaster brake a dangerous, poor choice.
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Old 09-14-11, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
I'll join that group, and I'll give solid reasoning behind it.
One of the specifications the OP requires is great braking. Both versions you linked to stock with a single coaster brake. With the exception of pushrod/pan brakes, or maybe the Fred Flintstone, coasters are the worst brakes you can get. Low power, and on long descents they're prone to overheating which renders them useless (leaving the pilot totally brakeless unless they opted for the front drum brake, which is actually a good brake.)

Both stock with steel rims, meaning even if they are drilled to accept rim brakes, they are effectively useless; especially if it rains. We don't know how much rain the OP expects (location not listed) but he does mention long hills near his home, making that coaster brake a dangerous, poor choice.
Not to mention the fact that the OP wants to build the bike himself.
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Old 09-14-11, 01:58 PM
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I built a salsa casserole over the spring and early summer. Youtube was my absolute best friend. There is a video on there to answer any bicycle building questions a newbie could have. Take your time and follow the instructions. You will spend more but in my opinion the quality of the build and parts you will source are much better. I ended up blowing my budget but I now own my favorite ride because of it.
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Old 09-14-11, 08:54 PM
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Hi all; thanks much for the continued great advice. I'm going to steer clear of the Worksman Bikes discussion totally. I've done a ton of reading and researching and put together an initial list of parts for my bike. This is NOT EVERYTHING, it's just what I've looked up thus far. With few exceptions, I'm quite open to changing anything and would love any and all suggestions!

These prices are just what I pulled from the links. I've not yet tried bargin shopping to do better so I know many things will be cheaper elsewhere. Additionally, there are some things that might not work together. I've tried to be careful but I'm sure I've made mistakes. Without further ado, here is the list as it stands:

Frame
Surly Troll - $495.00
Origin8 Pro Threadless Headset - 1-1/8", Black - $23.38

Drive Train - Missing crankset, shifter, etc.
N360 CVT Hub - $349.91
Redline Alloy Chain Tensioners 3/8 - $11.88
KMC Z30NP Chain 5/6 Speed 1/2" x 3/32" - $9.30

Wheels - Missing spokes
Surly Disc Front Hub QR 36h Black - $75.00
Sun Rhyno Lite 26" x 1.75" 36 hole, presta valve - $27.20 x 2 = $54.40
Marathon Plus 26" x 1.75" - $41.59 x 2 = $83.18
Slime Smart Tube - $8.88 x 2 = $17.76

Brakes
Avid BB7 Break Assembly 203mm rotor - $60.28 x 2 = $120.56
Avid Speed Dial 7 Brake Lever - $14.25 x 2 = $28.50
Avenir Brake Cable - teflon coated - $3.35 x 2 = $6.70
Brake Ferrule - $6.50

Accessories - Missing lights/reflectors
Surly Nice Rack, Rear (Black), Cromoly, 26"-29" - $136.00
Planet Bike Cascadia Fenders - $38.41
Planet Bike ARS Saddle - $19.99
Thudbuster 27.2mm - $119.99

Tools
Topeak Alien II Multitool - $29.62
Road Morph Pump - $27.91

Total price thus far? $1653.99 I figured I'd be at about $2k before I electrify so I'm on track still.

I'd love feedback on anything I've listed but I'm particularly interested in the rim/tire choice as I agonized over that a lot. I'm not positive that rim and tire pair will work. I'm still looking for absolutely flat-proof tires for my fat butt and lots of research showed people were very happy with the Rhyno Lite. I found other rims I liked better but they seemed too thin.

Thanks again for all the help!

-Mike
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Old 09-14-11, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by webgeek View Post
Wow, I really like the Troll. I'm just a sucker for the MTB shape to be honest. ... Only downside is that it only supports 26" wheels though I see I can squeeze 700c's in there and still get fenders on it.
The Surly Ogre is new for 2012. It's the 29er version of the Troll. Check it out: https://surlybikes.com/bikes/ogre .
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Old 09-14-11, 09:18 PM
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I know, I LOVE it even more than the Troll but it won't be available till December from what I read and I don't want to wait that long if I can avoid it.

-Mike
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Old 09-15-11, 12:46 AM
  #20  
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A few of the newer I've looked at. - Fair warning I have retrogrouch tendencies, & do own Brooks Saddles.
- Soma Saga or LHT - fits all criteria, & you can easily to a build with Riser Bars, etc if you'd like. I've seen it done & kinda like it; albeit I think I'd do drops if I was doing a long tour.
Neither are real expensive frames, but please remember the frame is just the start of your spending.
- Velo Orange Polyvalent Just cuz it tickles the retro-grouch in me. I've built similar (Kogswell P/R). This is much an old world do everything bike. It has the niftiness & drawbacks of 650B Wheels. A bit less common, but no longer impossible to get tires & wheels for.
- Rawland Cycles - they have a variety of frames they've kicked out that are pretty good all round MTB types with both disc & canti models available. They're a small outfit so they run out of certain sizes et al.
- Gunnar. This is the production tig welded arm of Waterford. If you are fussy about the origin of the frame, these are made in Wisconsin last I heard. I've been eying up the Grand Tour model, but am a bit low on garage space. They also make both cross & MTB's as well that would server your purpose. They are not cheap, but they're cheaper than a Waterford.
If I had the $$ I'd get a custom lugged touring model Waterford with discs. Nothing against a good set of Canti's though, I use them now in the Seattle rains with no issues.

All that being said my workhorse is an old Trek 750 Hybrid with some production touring wheels on it, & a redone drive train (had old suntour stuff on it you can't get anymore).
I ran through a set of Vittoria Randonneur's (700*35) with no major issues & currently am using some Conti Contacts (700*37 very smooth). I use some tire liners that came with the bike between the tube & the tire, I had one flat while wearing out the Vittoria's & that appeared to be a defect in the tube that finally gave up the ghost.

In short lots of nice frames out there if you know what you want, but don't neglect the idea of rebuilding an older bike as an option as well if you find a model you like, if you're like me with a penchant towards steel, preferably lugged, then it's a good way to keep the budget in line (Thinking an old Hybrid like mine , one of the longer wheel base MTB's like the Trek 900 series, or an old touring bike)
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Old 09-15-11, 11:13 AM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
I'll join that group, and I'll give solid reasoning behind it.
One of the specifications the OP requires is great braking. Both versions you linked to stock with a single coaster brake. With the exception of pushrod/pan brakes, or maybe the Fred Flintstone, coasters are the worst brakes you can get. Low power, and on long descents they're prone to overheating which renders them useless (leaving the pilot totally brakeless unless they opted for the front drum brake, which is actually a good brake.)

Both stock with steel rims, meaning even if they are drilled to accept rim brakes, they are effectively useless; especially if it rains. We don't know how much rain the OP expects (location not listed) but he does mention long hills near his home, making that coaster brake a dangerous, poor choice.
Worksman bikes are all available with front drum & coaster brakes as well as alloy wheels with 11gage stainless steel spokes. ONLY worksman bikes are used as rentals on the down hills in Hawaii due to exceptional braking.

Since I own a Worksman bike I can tell you that rain or shine it will stop on a dime.

Your knowledge of this brand is sorely lacking.
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I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

Originally Posted by krazygluon
Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

Last edited by Nightshade; 09-15-11 at 11:19 AM.
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Old 09-15-11, 11:14 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by Nightshade View Post
Worksman bikes are all available with front drum & coaster brakes as well as alloy wheels with 11gage stainless steel spokes. ONLY worksman bikes are used as rentals on the down hills in Hawaii due to exceptional braking.
The Worskman rental bikes used on the 26mi downhill course in Hawaii (from the information I have, refute it if I'm wrong) are dual drum brake, steel rimmed heavy duty Urban Assault Cycle versions.

Both bikes you linked to stock with coaster rear and no front brake. No rear drum upgrade is available for the LD version. On the HD version, dual drum braking is a $160 add-on. While reliable, the added security of good brakes adds 50% to the cost of the bike. I have a reliable pair of cantis that will stop me in a rainstorm coming off a 20% downhill grade before I end up in 5 lanes of cross-traffic. The pair (including upgraded pads) cost me $45.

The UAC version as listed on Island Sport Shop's site goes for $489.00, which isn't a bad price for a bike. But there are better options out there as far as weight and options go within a +/- $50 range.
The two Worksman bikes you listed (as stock configuration) have their place alongside the Schwinn Heavy-Duty and Electra Deluxe as fantastic factory and boardwalk bikes, great for hauling stuff from one end of the shop floor to the other, or lugging a surfboard a couple miles to the shore with your wetsuit and lunch in the basket. I won't deny them that functionality.
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Old 09-16-11, 12:19 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
The Worskman rental bikes used on the 26mi downhill course in Hawaii (from the information I have, refute it if I'm wrong) are dual drum brake, steel rimmed heavy duty Urban Assault Cycle versions.

Both bikes you linked to stock with coaster rear and no front brake. No rear drum upgrade is available for the LD version. On the HD version, dual drum braking is a $160 add-on. While reliable, the added security of good brakes adds 50% to the cost of the bike. I have a reliable pair of cantis that will stop me in a rainstorm coming off a 20% downhill grade before I end up in 5 lanes of cross-traffic. The pair (including upgraded pads) cost me $45.

The UAC version as listed on Island Sport Shop's site goes for $489.00, which isn't a bad price for a bike. But there are better options out there as far as weight and options go within a +/- $50 range.
The two Worksman bikes you listed (as stock configuration) have their place alongside the Schwinn Heavy-Duty and Electra Deluxe as fantastic factory and boardwalk bikes, great for hauling stuff from one end of the shop floor to the other, or lugging a surfboard a couple miles to the shore with your wetsuit and lunch in the basket. I won't deny them that functionality.
What I did not say was that ALL Worksman bikes are suited for the downhill only that are tough enough to run the downhill.

We seem to agree that Worksman is a heavy duty bike ideally suited for urban utility use.
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My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

Originally Posted by krazygluon
Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?
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Old 09-17-11, 06:18 AM
  #24  
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Here comes my 2 cents.
Surly Karate Monkey, which is a 29er [ depending on the wheelset you use, you can run anything from 700 x 28 to 29 x 2.3 tires ]. You could also run derailleurs or and internal hub, whichever ultimately floats your boat.
Cable actuated disc brakes, like Avid BB7.
9 speed drivetrain with a triple crankset. I recommend a rear derailleur w/a barrell adjuster if at all possible.
Otherwise you can splurge and use a Rohloff Speed Disc hub [ belt or chain styles available ].
36 hole handbuilt wheels [ Salsa Delgado, Sun Rhyno Lyte, Mavic A819 or Velocity Chukkers ].
Chris King headset would be the premium choice. FSA and Cane Creek would be less pricey options.
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Old 09-17-11, 08:56 AM
  #25  
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The reason I keep coming back to the Troll is that I want to run fenders and a rack. I'm under the impression that all the other frames people keep listing wont do that. The reason for Nuvinci vs. a rear derailleur is that the rear derailleurs can't handle having a motor assist though the bottom bracket - stories abound of them failing at speed when doing this. Good to know about the headset, I'll swap that. Thanks!

-Mike
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