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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 06-18-17, 02:57 PM   #1
higehiru
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Fixer-upper Steamroller vs. Complete build SE Lager?

So a couple weeks ago I bought a 2011 Surly Steamroller off craigslist for $200. It was a frankenstein though, none of the components match the original except the crankset (probably stolen TBH, but I tried searching all the local forums and communities for any posts about a stolen Surly before I bought it and nothing came up). I paid $200 for it. Got a used set of Kona drop-handlebars for $30 and just ordered some new brakes/housing/bar tape for $35.

The big thing is that I will need to get a rear wheel - it currently has that very tacky 'Pure Fixie' gold colored wheel. I am budgeting around $100 for that. The frame is in excellent condition, but it is a 49 cm and I am 5'6"- so it is a bit small but it was comfortable on the rides I have taken. I have a bit of buyers remorse because of how much money I am sinking into the project, but I keep picturing the final product and I am excited. I guess I am a bit of a Surly fanboy in this regard as well, I have had a LHT for about 5 years and put thousands and thousands of miles on it and it has never let me down.

Fast forward to today. I am looking on CL for some wheels and I come across this SE Lager. He is asking $300. I don't know much about SE Lager, but the bike seems to have been well cared for and has some nice upgrades (like the fenders - I am using this for commuting in a very urban setting). It is a 52, which I think is a more natural fit for me as well.

My question. If you were in my shoes would cut your losses with the Steamroller 'Project', buy the SE Lager and put the Surly back on CL to salvage some money? Or, is the upgrade in quality between Surly and SE Lager enough that invested the additional $100 is worth it?
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Old 06-18-17, 04:21 PM   #2
silvaeri
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Keep the steamroller, it's a much better bike imo and you'll enjoy it more in the long run vs SE Lager.

Also jsyk, Surly sizes weird and their 49s are actually closer to 52cm bikes based on their top tube length, so I don't feel like that bike is too small for. It's probably not.
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Old 06-19-17, 07:46 AM   #3
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^Agreed. The Steamroller is a solid bike, keep it.
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Old 06-19-17, 07:54 AM   #4
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If you honestly believe the Surly might be stolen, you need to talk to the police about it. It's kind of a d*ck move to KNOWINGLY buy stolen goods. (usually illegal, foo)
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Old 06-19-17, 10:33 AM   #5
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Steam roller all the way.
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Old 06-19-17, 12:57 PM   #6
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The steamroller is a full notch above the SE lager in my book.

But it's a real hot mess right now with the complete mis-mash of parts.

Which makes me think it is a stolen bike that was from a chop-shop where it was parted and re-built with parts from other bikes in the thief's attempt to make it a "different" bike that's less recognizable.
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Old 06-19-17, 02:40 PM   #7
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No brainer, put some money into the Surly and make it nice. I love mine.
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Old 06-19-17, 03:32 PM   #8
higehiru
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Originally Posted by Leukybear View Post
The steamroller is a full notch above the SE lager in my book.

But it's a real hot mess right now with the complete mis-mash of parts.

Which makes me think it is a stolen bike that was from a chop-shop where it was parted and re-built with parts from other bikes in the thief's attempt to make it a "different" bike that's less recognizable.
This was my thought - however this bike sat on Craigslist with a photo in the state pictured above, labeled as Surly Steamroller for well over a month before I bought it. I don't think the onus is on the victim (if this was a theft) to recover their bike, but if it was stolen then Craigslist is the first place someone would look for a bicycle, right? I also looked on some national databases about stolen bicycles and nothing came up similar to this particular bicycle. And because it is Hawaii, it is very unlikely that someone may have stolen it and moved to another town and posted it on craigslist.

Someone suggested contacting the police, so I think I will do that just as a piece of mind.
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Old 06-19-17, 03:40 PM   #9
higehiru
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If you honestly believe the Surly might be stolen, you need to talk to the police about it. It's kind of a d*ck move to KNOWINGLY buy stolen goods. (usually illegal, foo)
You are right. I know that if my bike had been stolen I would want that to happen. I just called Honolulu Police Department and spoke with someone. After giving them the serial number they said they didn't have anything in their system for it.

I don't know that there is much more I can do at this point. As I said in another comment, this bike sat on craigslist for over a month before I bought it, so there was ample time for the victim to find it as well.
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