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I bought myself a bike for school. Needs work. I need some help.

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I bought myself a bike for school. Needs work. I need some help.

Old 07-05-11, 07:33 PM
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SethODucks
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I bought myself a bike for school. Needs work. I need some help.

Hello everyone. I've been searching for a bike for my freshman year of college for the past few months. It's been difficult since I've needed something cheap, yet big since I'm on a college campus and it's gonna be in a high theft area and I'm a big guy. So I found one on craigslist, checked it out, and I bought it. It was 80 bucks and it fit. However, there are some issues. Here it is...


The guy I bought it from was a sketchy guy who said he was desperate for cash. He was asking 100, but the first thing out of his mouth was "You can have it for 80." He had pretty much put this thing together. All I know is that it's a KHS Alite 1000 frame.

It needs a rear brake caliper for the rear disc brake. And the shifter for the front sprockets is busted. It won't go into third gear. And I need to change the bars since I feel far too hunched over. And it needs a complete tire change. I wanna go tubeless since I'm gonna be at college and a flat is the last thing I want to deal with. And honestly, I probably need all new brake lines. I feel like this is gonna be quite a bit of cash going into it. Anyone have a very rough estimate of what I'm gonna spend? 300 is as far as I'd like to go.

He had said it was a mountain bike, but what kind of frame is this? It doesn't have any shocks. So is this a road bike? Or is it a mountain bike frame with out shocks? Can I change forks and put shocks? I mean, I'm not too worried about it, but I'm curious.

I usually do my research before purchasing stuff, but it was used and cheap. So can anyone give me some advice? Tips? Anything is appreciated. Thank you. Did I get a good buy?
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Old 07-05-11, 07:47 PM
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Sure looks like a hardtail MTB frame but the fork looks too delicate compared to the head tube. Did it originally have a shock fork that he replaced with the current one?
Used to be threadless but now is threaded? Which would explain the non-MTB stem.
Used to have disc brakes but he slapped a couple of sketchy-looking caliper brakes of some sort on? Can't tell from the pic what those brakes are about.
Are the wheels true?
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Old 07-05-11, 07:56 PM
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should be a few bike repair books in the library.. have you read them?
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Old 07-05-11, 08:01 PM
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He did slap on the rear caliper brake before I got there. It doesn't work. I'm gonna take it off. The front works pretty good. And can you tell me what you mean by "Are the wheels true?" I'm a noobie.

No, I'll have to check some out. Haha.
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Old 07-05-11, 08:07 PM
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to do it cheap...

remove rear brake altogether. run front only. you're on a campus. you don't need to be traveling at 20 mph.

as far as the cramped feeling. i see you've got the seat back as far as it will go. but stems come in longer lengths try a 140 or 145mm or longer if you can find it. and bullhorns or cutoff drops will give you a hand position that is further forward.

and finally, just toss the front derailleur and shifter altogether. while you're at it, toss two out of the three chainrings. oh, and if you do, you'll need some single speed chainring bolts.

this should cost quite a bit less than 300 dollars.

edit: i just reread you post, and i noticed you've got what looks like a functioning rear caliper brake (as someone noted), so why the question about the rear disc? just take the disc off and ignore the mounting bracket.

Last edited by hueyhoolihan; 07-05-11 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 07-05-11, 08:40 PM
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I guess I should restate myself. I'm not looking to go the cheapest route. I like stuff done right. And I know that that requires money, but I don't wanna dump 500 dollar for brand new top of the line parts.

The rear brake doesn't work. It's complete junk. I plan on going to the bike shop and having them look over everything and give me estimates.

However, does anyone know what it might run to get some shock forks with some decent shocks? Could I buy some off of ebay?
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Old 07-05-11, 09:34 PM
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Looks like someone tried to make a road bike out of a mountain bike and failed. Mechanical disc calipers aren't that expensive. Rigid steel forks can be had cheap. Fork and stem are just plain weird. I've seen this before at a swapmeet where some idiot tried this trick with a otherwise beautiful condition Stumpjumper.



Screw tubeless. I have a mountain bike with tubes that has gone years between flats. That change will kill your budget with no real gain.

If you can't figure out how to do the work, sell this roach! Instead of a project, buy something in more rideable condition. You can sink a buncha cash into a bike with no guarantee of success. It does not look like it fits you.
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Old 07-05-11, 09:56 PM
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Could something like this do me any good?
https://cgi.ebay.com/Suntour-XCT-V2-1...7#ht_578wt_936

I guess the tubeless idea is gone. Honestly, I feel like I got a pretty nice frame for 80 bucks. I'll see what I can do with it.
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Old 07-05-11, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by SethODucks View Post
It needs a rear brake caliper for the rear disc brake. And the shifter for the front sprockets is busted. It won't go into third gear. And I need to change the bars since I feel far too hunched over. And it needs a complete tire change. I wanna go tubeless since I'm gonna be at college and a flat is the last thing I want to deal with. And honestly, I probably need all new brake lines. I feel like this is gonna be quite a bit of cash going into it. Anyone have a very rough estimate of what I'm gonna spend? 300 is as far as I'd like to go.
I doubt you're going to do all of that for $300. Actually, I'm not sure you can convert to tubeless tires for $300.

Does anything on that bike really work the way it's supposed to?

One other thing. You said the seller was a sketchy guy. I'd avoid riding that bike on a college campus because the guy who really owns that frame might recognize it and call a cop to try to get it back.

Last edited by Retro Grouch; 07-05-11 at 10:40 PM.
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Old 07-05-11, 10:54 PM
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You have most of a decent project bike there. That's the good news. $80 was an okay price.

The bad news is that you can't ride most of a bike.

Few questions:

Does that frame have disc caliper mounts, brake posts, or both?

What's the steering stem length required?

How much mechanical experience do you have?

I've picked up a rigid steel fork at the swap meet for $5.00. If those are trigger shifters, very often they come from the factory lubed with white grease. White grease dries out and turns sticky. Shifter doesn't work. After a strip-n-clean, most will come back. V-brakes can be found for cheap. Bought a set of Nashbar discs, calipers and levers for $65.00. The E bay fork is functional, but you'll need a stem.

Oddly enough, this bike is too pretty for campus. Has an exotic look. Get something that works better but looks worse.
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Old 07-06-11, 12:12 AM
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Bought the bike in a different town.

The bike is rideable. The shifter needs to be fixed. The brake lines are fine, but I would feel better if they were new. The rear disc is on. It just needs a caliper. And the bars is more of a comfort thing. The tires can probably be filled with slime. I didn't realize tubeless was so expensive.

To Flying Merkel,
I'm not sure about the caliper mounts.
I will find out.

Honestly, I have very little mechanical experience. But my dad and I are doing it together, and he's a very handy guy. (Sounds naive, I know.) But honestly, he's built sandrails and he knows a lot. So I'm not worried about doing work on our own. I'm just gonna take it down to the local shop and have them look over it and check everything over.

Thank you guys very much for all of your help. I'll see what I can do with this thing. I'll let you know how it goes.
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Old 07-06-11, 06:26 AM
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Originally Posted by SethODucks View Post
Could something like this do me any good?
https://cgi.ebay.com/Suntour-XCT-V2-1...7#ht_578wt_936

I guess the tubeless idea is gone. Honestly, I feel like I got a pretty nice frame for 80 bucks. I'll see what I can do with it.
Switching back to a suspension fork will be costly you would need at a minimum

fork
headset
stem

since it is a college bike, I would make it functional for a cheap as possible and just ride it.

You can find some information on the bike at

bikepedia khs alite 1000

I couldn't figure out the year from the photos. But it appears that you have quite a frankenbike.

Last edited by cyclist2000; 07-06-11 at 06:33 AM. Reason: added link
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Old 07-06-11, 10:14 AM
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So I woke up this morning at 4:00 after inspiration hit. Our hero needs to find a girl bike. A women's hybrid or MTB would be cheaper than getting the KHS is order. Spray it with a wacky rattlecan paint job, tie a stolen milk crate to the front, you got a practical campus bike that's not too likely to draw unwanted interest.
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Old 07-06-11, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by SethODucks View Post
Could something like this do me any good?
https://cgi.ebay.com/Suntour-XCT-V2-1...7#ht_578wt_936

I guess the tubeless idea is gone. Honestly, I feel like I got a pretty nice frame for 80 bucks. I'll see what I can do with it.
You just can't buy any old fork and slap it on. The size of the fork is important plus you'll need to look at the headset and stem (likely a different size is required). Suggestion: you do not need suspension; take a look at Surly's front forks (1x1, instigator, etc.), they are designed to replace front suspensions on mountain bikes. Be sure to get the right size.

Forget tubeless, get a patch kit and learn how to use it. With good tires you shouldn't have many flat problems in Eugene (no large thorns, etc.).

Get a copy of a good maintenance book from your local library that covers mountain bikes (Park Tools complete guide, Bicyling guide to complete bike maintenance, etc.). IMO you and your dad should go over every inch of that bike (not just the things that look broken). If a few visible things are done in a half-assed manner than you can expect some hidden things to be done in a similar way.
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Old 07-06-11, 06:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Flying Merkel View Post
So I woke up this morning at 4:00 after inspiration hit. Our hero needs to find a girl bike. A women's hybrid or MTB would be cheaper than getting the KHS is order. Spray it with a wacky rattlecan paint job, tie a stolen milk crate to the front, you got a practical campus bike that's not too likely to draw unwanted interest.
I should get a pic to prove it, but my theory is that a bit of rusty barbecue grill is the ultimate anti-theft device. There's a cheap-but-clearly-functional trailer at the local university's science building that's been safely bungeed to the bike rack for at least three months with only the piece of rusty grill laying inside to protect it from thieves.
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Old 07-07-11, 11:22 PM
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Originally Posted by KD5NRH View Post
I should get a pic to prove it, but my theory is that a bit of rusty barbecue grill is the ultimate anti-theft device. There's a cheap-but-clearly-functional trailer at the local university's science building that's been safely bungeed to the bike rack for at least three months with only the piece of rusty grill laying inside to protect it from thieves.
funny you should mention that.

i picked up an old tiny Hibachi BBQ at a garage sale the other day and when i got it home i found out the grill part was missing.

where did you say that trailer was?
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Old 07-09-11, 09:05 PM
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I took it to a couple local shops. It's junk. My dad is trying to play Macgyver and throw it back together, but it needs a lot more than a paperclip. We went to a shop out of town that specializes in KHS bikes. Told us we were screwed. Haha.

Dad picked up a Pacific Summit that his coworker just gave to him. We threw some new HD tubes into it. I can ride it, but the front derailleur is crap. I'm gonna try and live with it for a year. But it is terribly small.

But the shop had an extra large Scott Aspect 45 that I absolutely fell in love with for 600. I'm gonna buy it, use it while I'm here at home and then maybe my sophomore year I'll take it and store it in my appartment. But it does seem like too nice of a bike to pass up. It's a 2010 and apparently $760 when it came out? Now it's down to $600. Anyone have any reviews?
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Old 07-09-11, 11:09 PM
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Originally Posted by hueyhoolihan View Post
funny you should mention that.

i picked up an old tiny Hibachi BBQ at a garage sale the other day and when i got it home i found out the grill part was missing.

where did you say that trailer was?
Stephenville...and it does look like a hibachi size grill.

I need to catch my university cop neighbor and ask him when the official bike rack cleanup day is; they usually just toss anything that they don't have an owner on file for and don't think they can auction for enough to justify the effort.
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