Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Singlespeed & Fixed Gear
Reload this Page >

Build vs. Buy Complete?

Notices
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)

Build vs. Buy Complete?

Old 07-17-21, 10:28 PM
  #1  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Build vs. Buy Complete?

Hello,
I'm a fairly experienced rider and am looking for a new single speed after a "brief" hiatus. Previous rode a built up Raleigh Rush Hour Pro (fixed) and a Fuji Feather Light (freewheel).
I'm looking to go free wheel with a brake. I'm looking at building up a Surly Steam Roller or this Cinelli Tutto Plus complete from factory.
I'd appreciate your input.
helliot out-
helliot is offline  
Old 07-17-21, 10:54 PM
  #2  
Fugazi Dave
Beausage is Beautiful
 
Fugazi Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Saitama, Japan
Posts: 5,503

Bikes: Nabiis Alchemy

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 8 Times in 7 Posts
Well, how are you with building/maintenance? How much do you want to spend? How much time/effort/budget are you willing to put into building something custom? Do you have any particularly strong feelings about going one way or the other?

Try this: If you think about everything that goes into building a bike from individual components, does it seem exciting/fun? Or does it seem like a lot of work you’d mostly rather skip? That should tell you a lot about what might be the better option for you.

I like building and making things just so, but it also takes longer, costs more, and can be very tedious. For most people, I think buying complete is often the better way to go, but it depends on a lot of variables.
__________________
Yo. Everything Iím doing is linked on Whatís up with Dave? but most of note currently is Somewhere in Japan.
Fugazi Dave is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 02:14 AM
  #3  
Lazyass
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Minas Ithil
Posts: 9,054
Mentioned: 62 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2319 Post(s)
Liked 436 Times in 279 Posts
I personally would build a frameset. For me the reason is mainly because most complete bikes don't come with super nice wheels. Most have straight gauge spokes and that's my pet peeve, I only like double butted for less weight and a smoother ride. And most I've seen come with a cheap freewheel. I bought my Wabi complete only because it was a black friday sale and I got Sub-15 wheels and deluxe freewheel for free.

When I see a complete bike for sale I calculate the extra money I know I would spend to upgrade it and include it in the complete price. Usually turns out to be a bad deal.
Lazyass is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 08:40 AM
  #4  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Thank You

Thank you very much for the feedback I really do appreciate it! As far as the frame sets go does one get the nod over the other as far quality/performance go?
helliot is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 10:21 AM
  #5  
ThermionicScott 
working on my sandal tan
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 20,750

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers), All-City Space Horse (hers)

Mentioned: 93 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3031 Post(s)
Liked 1,083 Times in 740 Posts
Building is fun if you like solving problems (occasionally of your own making.) There's nothing wrong with giving someone dollars for a bike you can ride right now, though.

BTW, if you're going to use a freewheel, hopefully you're planning on two brakes, not just one.
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is online now  
Likes For ThermionicScott:
Old 07-18-21, 10:33 AM
  #6  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Building is fun if you like solving problems (occasionally of your own making.) There's nothing wrong with giving someone dollars for a bike you can ride right now, though.

BTW, if you're going to use a freewheel, hopefully you're planning on two brakes, not just one.
Why would you not just go with a rear brake?
helliot is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 10:52 AM
  #7  
TejanoTrackie 
Veteran Racer
 
TejanoTrackie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ciudad de Vacas, Tejas
Posts: 11,473

Bikes: 29 frames + 74 wheels

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 938 Post(s)
Liked 283 Times in 166 Posts
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
Why would you not just go with a rear brake?
Same reason that cars and motorcycles don't have only rear brakes, because in an emergency you can't stop quickly with only a rear brake. Under hard braking, up to 80% of the braking force comes from the front brake.
__________________
What, Me Worry? - Alfred E. Neuman

Originally Posted by Dcv View Post
I'd like to think i have as much money as brains.
I see the light at the end of the tunnel, but the tunnel keeps getting longer - me
TejanoTrackie is offline  
Likes For TejanoTrackie:
Old 07-18-21, 10:55 AM
  #8  
ThermionicScott 
working on my sandal tan
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 20,750

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers), All-City Space Horse (hers)

Mentioned: 93 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3031 Post(s)
Liked 1,083 Times in 740 Posts
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
Why would you not just go with a rear brake?
Two reasons: I always want to have two ways to stop or slow my bike (cables can snap), and rear brakes by themselves are not as effective as a front brake.
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is online now  
Old 07-18-21, 11:07 AM
  #9  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Cool point well taken thanks for the input!
helliot is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 11:23 AM
  #10  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 9,667

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 103 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2989 Post(s)
Liked 1,587 Times in 1,051 Posts
Also - brake hoods are very nice when going uphill. Yes you can mount a lever-less hood for the uphill handles but once you've done that , the cable, housing and caliper cost you almost nothing (in weight and not a lot more in cost).

Sez Ben who started riding road fix gears with two brakes when Greg Lemond was a junior
79pmooney is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 04:10 PM
  #11  
JohnDThompson 
Old fart
 
JohnDThompson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Appleton WI
Posts: 22,857

Bikes: Several, mostly not name brands.

Mentioned: 134 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2690 Post(s)
Liked 1,399 Times in 870 Posts
Building up a bike using new components is almost always more expensive than buying a complete bike, but if you have a pile of parts already sitting around and the tools and experience to build a bike using them, why not?
JohnDThompson is offline  
Old 07-18-21, 05:17 PM
  #12  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Steam Roller

I rolled by the shop today and checked out the Steam Roller frame set. I was sold and will be building up a bike.
helliot is offline  
Likes For helliot:
Old 07-18-21, 07:03 PM
  #13  
Philasteve
Senior Member
 
Philasteve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 1,450

Bikes: Surly CreamRoller. 98 Giant Rincon. SE UVT

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked 12 Times in 9 Posts
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
I rolled by the shop today and checked out the Steam Roller frame set. I was sold and will be building up a bike.
Awesome, what color frame?
Philasteve is offline  
Old 07-19-21, 01:46 AM
  #14  
SkinGriz
Do cats eat bats?
 
Join Date: Nov 2020
Location: LA
Posts: 540

Bikes: BigBox bikes.

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 273 Post(s)
Liked 204 Times in 156 Posts
Originally Posted by Fugazi Dave View Post
Well, how are you with building/maintenance? How much do you want to spend? How much time/effort/budget are you willing to put into building something custom? Do you have any particularly strong feelings about going one way or the other?

Try this: If you think about everything that goes into building a bike from individual components, does it seem exciting/fun? Or does it seem like a lot of work youíd mostly rather skip? That should tell you a lot about what might be the better option for you.

I like building and making things just so, but it also takes longer, costs more, and can be very tedious. For most people, I think buying complete is often the better way to go, but it depends on a lot of variables.
The problem Iíve run into in many hobbies is that it might take so long just to find the parts at a reasonable cost that I would have been money and time ahead by just pulling another shift or 2 at work and buying new.

Wrenching is often the fun/easy part. Parts scrounging not so much.
SkinGriz is offline  
Old 07-19-21, 05:44 AM
  #15  
IAmSam
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,464
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 343 Post(s)
Liked 132 Times in 65 Posts
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
I rolled by the shop today and checked out the Steam Roller frame set. I was sold and will be building up a bike.
How can you not like a Steamroller? There's one that's been hanging around my family for a decade or so that still gets ridden almost daily. Enjoy yours.

Originally Posted by SkinGriz View Post
The problem I’ve run into in many hobbies is that it might take so long just to find the parts at a reasonable cost that I would have been money and time ahead by just pulling another shift or 2 at work and buying new.

Wrenching is often the fun/easy part. Parts scrounging not so much.
Yup - this is a bad time to be parts shopping. Good luck...
IAmSam is offline  
Old 07-19-21, 07:09 AM
  #16  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Thank you I'm looking forward to getting down with this Orange Shag Carpet beauty. I'm very fortunate that this shop has a good line on quality parts.
helliot is offline  
Old 07-19-21, 03:59 PM
  #17  
helliot
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 7

Bikes: Haro Group One Mike King Cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 1 Post
Test Ride

I havenít purchased anything yet. Iíll be test riding an All City Cycles Professional Single Speed on Wednesday.
helliot is offline  
Old 07-19-21, 04:20 PM
  #18  
TugaDude
Senior Member
 
TugaDude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 2,635
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 331 Post(s)
Liked 267 Times in 200 Posts
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
I havenít purchased anything yet. Iíll be test riding an All City Cycles Professional Single Speed on Wednesday.
All City is a great company. I ride a Big Block and I know some others here do as well. I have zero complaints on mine. Well, the bottle bosses on the seat tube aren't the greatest, but I can live with it. Other than that, ride quality, weight and build quality are top notch. The paint is better than average, IMO.

I'll bet you end up liking that bike after the test ride. Just know that the sizing is a bit different than some. My Big Block I think is listed as 55cm but it rides more like a 57cm or 58cm. Don't buy until you're sure it is going to fit. I assume the test ride will be on the appropriate size.
TugaDude is offline  
Old 07-20-21, 02:21 AM
  #19  
Lazyass
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Minas Ithil
Posts: 9,054
Mentioned: 62 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2319 Post(s)
Liked 436 Times in 279 Posts
The All City's are very sharp but they do look pretty porky to me. If I were going to build a nice road frame that wasn't a Wabi I'd probably spend a little extra and order a Gunnar Street Dog. I've always liked them, I almost bought one on ebay once.
Lazyass is offline  
Old 07-20-21, 11:01 AM
  #20  
Broctoon
Super-duper Genius
 
Broctoon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Muskrat Springs, Utah
Posts: 986
Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 428 Post(s)
Liked 229 Times in 139 Posts
helliot , All City makes great stuff. They're one of my favorite bike companies. I have their Nature Boy Disc single speed. I've never seen a Professional in person, but I'm sure it's very nice and will serve you well, if that's the one you choose.

You could also do well to get the Steamroller. I have one and like it a lot. It's been one of the best bikes I've ever owned.

Let us know how it goes.
Broctoon is offline  
Old 07-26-21, 12:49 PM
  #21  
Rolla
Gyro Captain
 
Rolla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Posts: 1,031
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 443 Post(s)
Liked 1,077 Times in 474 Posts
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
I rolled by the shop today and checked out the Steam Roller frame set. I was sold and will be building up a bike.

Love the Steamroller. I built one up several years ago and found it to be a great platform for all kinds of build variations, as well as being nearly bombproof for whatever kind of riding I threw at it. This was fixed, with front brake:


Rolla is offline  
Old 07-31-21, 01:18 PM
  #22  
roadfix
hello
 
roadfix's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 18,618
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 170 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 20 Posts
I had a chocolate brown Steamroller, built it from the frame up almost 20 years ago, including the wheelset using old style Camp track hubs, Mavic rims, Campy track crankset, Brooks, Nittos, Eggbeaters…. I sold it about 5 years ago though. I still ride an old Bianchi track frame, also built from scratch around the same time.
roadfix is offline  
Likes For roadfix:
Old 07-31-21, 02:02 PM
  #23  
browndude3649
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 21
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by helliot View Post
Hello,
I'm a fairly experienced rider and am looking for a new single speed after a "brief" hiatus. Previous rode a built up Raleigh Rush Hour Pro (fixed) and a Fuji Feather Light (freewheel).
I'm looking to go free wheel with a brake. I'm looking at building up a Surly Steam Roller or this Cinelli Tutto Plus complete from factory.
I'd appreciate your input.
helliot out-
As long as you got the tools needed like a ruler and mike meter to measure used parts, and the patience cuz itll take a long time. Do a ground up build, if not your previous bikes are winners, and ur choices from above posts are mosdef easier to start up n get going to have big fun right now. If you had a bike kitchen nearby or a big flea market to hunt for parts, id start now and plan for ur "beater back upcruiser ride" including hunting down tools . My only mistake with last frame only beater build is its got horizontal drop outs. Not a deal breaker but takes away a small but easy adjustment if it had diag rear drop outs.
browndude3649 is offline  
Old 07-31-21, 02:09 PM
  #24  
roadfix
hello
 
roadfix's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 18,618
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 170 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 20 Posts
Diagonal dropouts are preferable if you intend to run a rear brake.
roadfix is offline  
Old 08-01-21, 02:27 PM
  #25  
drlogik 
Senior Member
 
drlogik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 1,399

Bikes: '87-ish Pinarello Montello; '89 Nishiki Ariel; '85 Raleigh Wyoming, '16 Wabi Special, '16 Wabi Classic, '14 Kona Cinder Cone

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 530 Post(s)
Liked 203 Times in 127 Posts
Unless you are patient and can wait for sales and close-outs on the individual components, build your own wheels, etc, it's probably better to buy a complete bike.
drlogik is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.