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Built my own

Old 09-12-14, 11:23 AM
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Built my own

I love to build things. (too long of a list to put here) As a kid I used to tear my bikes down and rebuild them to see if I could make it faster or smoother. (and just to see how it works) So what better way to get into touring than building my own. Where is the best place to buy frames, parts etc....?

P.S. I've been looking on Ebay and Craigslist but don't see what I'm looking for. To start with I'm looking for a LHT or 520 style frame in 56-58 cm.

Thanks

Last edited by jargo432; 09-13-14 at 05:32 PM.
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Old 09-12-14, 11:32 AM
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Warning, I'm about to be less than helpful....

I have the same affliction, so i built my own Frankenbike using a trek hybrid frame and parts from a specialized road bike. I love it. It's unique and does what i want.

To your point... just start looking everywhere. Friends dusty basements, thrift stores. Local shops. Y never know what you might find. Also do lots of research so you know what it is you just found.
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Old 09-12-14, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by jargo432
I love to build things. (too long of a list to put here) As a kid I used to tear my bikes down and rebuild them to see if I could make it faster or smoother. (and just to see how it works) So what better way to get into touring than building my own. Where is the best place to buy frames, parts etc....?

P.S. I've been looking on Ebay and Craigslist but don't see what I'm looking for. To start with I'm looking for a LHT or 520 style frame in 56-58 cm.

Thanks
If you want to make something yourself I'd be a bit more adventurous than the tank like LHT. What about a 1980's sport tourer or a cross bike. I like the Bianchi Volpe as a frame to customize for touring.
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Old 09-12-14, 12:31 PM
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You mean build as in make.....LUGS :: Nova Cycles Supply Inc.

Or build as in put together....

If the latter,you can find stuff all over.....I built a touring bike from a Nashbar Disk Mnt bike...I love it.
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Old 09-12-14, 04:10 PM
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There are places like niagaracycle, eBikestop, smartbikeparts, chainreactioncycles and bike24 etc. for parts. Cambriabike, Nashbar and Chainreactioncycles etc. have frames.

There's a whole list here of Shimano groupsets if you scroll down: Bike24 - Shimano

They do have trekking groupsets but the those are for flat bars. North American touring bikes usually have drop bars.

EDIT: The main three things I'd look at is the frameset, groupset and wheels.

Last edited by hybridbkrdr; 09-12-14 at 04:15 PM.
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Old 09-13-14, 06:05 AM
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I built up my last four bikes from the frame, first of those four was 10 years ago. I used to work in a bike shop in the 70s, so I knew the basics of bike mechanics but was pretty low on the learning curve for newer stuff like indexed gearing, cartridge bottom brackets and threadless stems. All my past experience was with freewheels, not freehubs and cassettes. I had to learn a lot.

Where practical I stayed with tried and true stuff like square taper bottom brackets and cranks.

You will learn a lot about bike components from Sheldon Brown website. Ten years ago I had not laced up a wheel for (at that time) about two decades and quite frankly had forgotten how to lace up a wheel. Sheldon Brown website helped me a lot with that and virtually everything else I needed to learn about, or in some cases relearn what I had forgotten.

The first couple years of Long Haul Trucker production were frames and forks only, no complete bikes. That is why every sage green LHT you see uses different components. I bought my frame from somebody I found with a google search for "long haul trucker free shipping". I bought one frame used from someone that put it on Ebay as a complete bike, but the bike did not sell due to high price, after the auction closed with no sale he was willing to sell the frame for a good price. I have also bought a couple frames on Ebay for a friend that did not have a home computer at that time for internet access, he found what he wanted on his work computer but did not want to use his work computer to order anything on Ebay so I bought them for him.

I got some parts from Nashbar, some from Niagara, some from Bike Parts USA dot com. A few parts I got used on Ebay. Almost all of the more expensive parts were on sale when I bought them, but I have never had good luck finding rims on sale. Some parts after I put them on, I decided I did not like them and bought something else later, it can be an ongoing process.

A local bike shop with a good spoke price was willing to measure my rims and hubs and calculate spoke length for me, so I bought my spokes locally from them for three of the bikes.

One local bike shop had some NOS front derailleurs that were exactly what I wanted so I bought those locally. I am partial to the old Suntour high normal front derailleurs and use them on all my bikes.

Hardware store locally for a bunch of stainless bolts and nuts.

I probably spent five times as much time figuring out what components to buy and where to buy from as the actual time spent assembling it.

Go for it and good luck.
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Old 09-13-14, 08:42 AM
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I worked in person with a Cargo Bike Builder to make a frame and fork to build a great touring bike around.

can you Braze, Weld and saw and File? Sew?
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Old 09-13-14, 09:15 AM
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Also, simply post in the Sales section here on BF. WTB or ISO. read lots of past posts, ask questions about best wheelsets, etc that may work best. List what you will use it for exactly and details and you will get straight forward recommendations from listmembers and you may even get someone saying, well, since you're looking for this. I have one really cheap that I am not using, etc. The list is very friendly and easy to communicate with members.

My dad worked on cars when I was growing up, "Walt's Body Shop". He 'made' a frameset for me when I was young. It was awesome and I loved it, but I did grow out of it. He was quite talented and used lugs that he purchased from at a bike shop in Erie. So I was proud to ride something that was actually 'made' from scratch by my own father.

Focus on a frame that will work for you precisely, and a good wheelset. They are very good starting points. Good luck
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Old 09-13-14, 09:48 AM
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You'll likely spend much more time and many more dollars than if you just ordered, say, a Windsor Tourist from Bikesdirect.com, but I believe the learning experience and satisfaction is well worth it.
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Old 09-13-14, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by dbg
You'll likely spend much more time and many more dollars than if you just ordered, say, a Windsor Tourist from Bikesdirect.com, but I believe the learning experience and satisfaction is well worth it.
Interesting that you mentioned the windsor...last year, I scored a Windsor that was barely used on these BF forums that fit my wife perfectly, had panniers already, accessories, etc and one heck of a deal from Scott! And I and my wife are still smiling. It works perfectly for her. So be vigil! You never know what may pop up for sale here!
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Old 09-13-14, 01:40 PM
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Also, When dealing with the fellow BF member, I was unable to travel with my wife and daughter when they picked the bike up. He took the time to check positioning and set up for her. Just another bonus of dealing with our community!
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Old 09-20-14, 05:55 AM
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Hey Everybody.
I want to build myself a bike starting with a frame then buying and installing components. What's a good place to find a frame? I'm looking for a good carbon frame (58-60cm). Compared to most people, my legs are a bit long and torso a bit short, so I think I need a frame with more stack and less reach than average.

I would appreciate your guidance.
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