My single speed build

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My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Fri May 07, 2010 1:53 pm

Following a long line of hard rubbish bike convertees I am about to start building up my own piece of hard rubbish into a half decent knock around single speed. The aim is to put a single speed coaster brake rear wheel on the back and a front brake. The frame is nothing flash...some old 80's steel thing which had no holes in the frame for bottle cages, but almost horizontal rear hanger which will make getting chain tension right.No lug work to file off either.

I will post some piccies of the work in progress when I work out how to do it but I have a question first.

I sent the frame and forks off to get sandblasted and powdercoated and they have come back looking really nice. HOWEVER, I didnt remove the bearing cups from the top and bottom of the head tube. I'm not too concerned by the lack of chrome on the cups now they have been powdercoated on the outside, but in hindsight should I have removed the cups?

Thanks

DahonDude

Edit:

Heres the bike straight off the nature strip.
Image

And a close up of the frame with decal name
Image
Last edited by Dahondude on Fri May 07, 2010 11:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Schwinn Madison single speed
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Avanti MTB converted to single speed
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by BNA » Fri May 07, 2010 2:12 pm

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Re: My single speed build

Postby j-ho » Fri May 07, 2010 2:12 pm

I'd advise against the coaster brake. A front brake is all you need, and less things to go wrong mechanically.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby brendan03 » Fri May 07, 2010 4:17 pm

j-ho wrote:I'd advise against the coaster brake. A front brake is all you need, and less things to go wrong mechanically.

He's going single speed, not fixed, so a rear brake is advisable.

Yeah, you should have removed the headset cups - you'll need to remove any powdercoat from the inside of the cups so the bearings have a smooth hard surface to roll on. You might be able to use a sharp knife cut around the cups & head tube join and remove them without too much damage. Or just ride as is. :P
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Re: My single speed build

Postby boyracer » Fri May 07, 2010 4:45 pm

Have you got your wheels yet jez? If the bikes a beater just load it up with grease and the bearings will take care cleaning the cups out....assuming they didnt blast the insides of the cups! check 'em every month or so and clean out/ regrease until back to shiny metal.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby brauluver » Fri May 07, 2010 4:53 pm

j-ho wrote:I'd advise against the coaster brake. A front brake is all you need, and less things to go wrong mechanically.


Whats wrong with a coaster brake ?
Makes perfect sense to have a CB rear and a front brake as well.

Good luck with your build dhd, can't wait for some pics.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby boyracer » Fri May 07, 2010 5:10 pm

brauluver wrote:
j-ho wrote:I'd advise against the coaster brake. A front brake is all you need, and less things to go wrong mechanically.


Whats wrong with a coaster brake ?
Makes perfect sense to have a CB rear and a front brake as well.

Good luck with your build dhd, can't wait for some pics.


get back in the shed Dave and finish that visp!!!
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Fri May 07, 2010 5:34 pm

boyracer wrote:Have you got your wheels yet jez? If the bikes a beater just load it up with grease and the bearings will take care cleaning the cups out....assuming they didnt blast the insides of the cups! check 'em every month or so and clean out/ regrease until back to shiny metal.

No was waiting to get the frame back to I can take it with me wheel shopping and make sure the wheel fits in the frame without any issues.

Only one cup has some crud in it so looks like I will need to do a bit of cleaning prior to reassembly.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Fri May 07, 2010 11:41 pm

Yep learned my lesson about powdercoating and not removing the headset cups. They are a bit rough but will have to do for now. The bottom bracket threads and the head tube were still chockers with grit and crud from the sandblasting so that took a while to clean out as well.

I got the frame powdercoated at Delway Brass here in Adelaide ( http://www.delwaybrass.com.au/ ). They charged $77 for sandblasting and powdercoating and appear to have done lots of bikes before. I have never had a bike powdercoated so dont know what is a great job versus an average one, but the p'coating looks pretty good to me. Good coverage all over the frame and they didnt get any in places where it shouldnt have been. The colour is something like British Racing Green.
Image
In hindsight I am not overly excited by the colour, but its dark, which will at least hide road grime.

Cleaned up the bottom bracket, removed the crappy old pedals (one took a herculean effort to get off), removed the small chain ring and chain guard, soaked everything in petrol for a few days to get rid of grease/dirt/road grime and counteract a bit of rust. All came up looking OK.
Image

Reassembled the forks/headset, bottom bracket and cranks, and cleaned up and reattached the handlebars tonight. Two small incidents with a wrench and one of the bottom bracket cups saw the frame lose two bits of paint (expletive). There's a bit of rust on the headset lock rings but otherwise it all looks pretty good so far.

Need to visit a bike shop in Adelaide (two have already been recommended) to try and find a cheap wheelset with a single speed, coaster braked rear wheel, a new seat post, seat post bolt and seat, drag out some old pedals from my pedal collection and get a few bits to sort out the front brake (cable and cable housing) and I am good to go. Bike number six to add to the collection!
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Re: My single speed build

Postby victor76 » Sat May 08, 2010 12:24 am

Looks like it's coming along nicely for you. I don't mind the colour of the frame. Contrasts nicely with the shiny silver. What colour wheelset do you have in mind?
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Sat May 08, 2010 7:12 am

Wheelset colour....whatever's available and cheap, but probably bulk standard silver. I am more worried about spending the least amount of money possible. In the end I may just get a SS coaster brake rear hub and then build up a rear wheel using hard rubbish chrome rims.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby j-ho » Sat May 08, 2010 2:50 pm

brauluver wrote:
j-ho wrote:I'd advise against the coaster brake. A front brake is all you need, and less things to go wrong mechanically.


Whats wrong with a coaster brake ?
Makes perfect sense to have a CB rear and a front brake as well.

Good luck with your build dhd, can't wait for some pics.

I probably shouldn't have written "advised", my bad. I've had all kinds of single speed/fixed variations (no back brake, back brake, coaster brake no front brake etc.). I'd personally get a flip flop back wheel and run it ss with a front brake (this is purely from an aesthetics pov which may or may not concern you, and if you feel like it, it's a matter of flipping the wheel around to go fixed. If you use a front brake, then the back brake becomes useless anyway? (I know this is a highly disputed topic)
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Sat May 08, 2010 4:32 pm

thanks j ho for your advice I also neglected to say that I aleeady have a Scwinn Madison with front and rear brake and flip flop hub AND an old mountain bike I converted to SS to carry kids to kindy. This new build isnt really meant for daily use, just mucking around on and wanted to go minimalistic but not quite as far as fixed. I really like the idea of a coaster brake.... reminds me of bikes I rode as a kid

Anyway thanks to boyracer I should have a new wheelset from International Cycles within the week.

I will try a 48 18 gear combo but might have to push it out to 48 20 (sorry I still cant get my head around gear inches)
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Re: My single speed build

Postby brauluver » Sat May 08, 2010 4:46 pm

Dahondude wrote:I will try a 48 18 gear combo but might have to push it out to 48 20 (sorry I still cant get my head around gear inches)


The bigger the number the harder to get rolling, but greater top speed for less RPM of pedals, harder to climb hills.
the smaller the number the easier to get started but more RPM to achieve top speed, and easier to climb hills.

http://software.bareknucklebrigade.com/

Try playing with this to achieve a 70 to 75 GI ratio.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby hartleymartin » Sat May 08, 2010 6:25 pm

48/18 - About 72 gear inches (28kph at 80rpm)
48/20 - About 65 gear inches (25kph at 80rpm)

Depending on the coaster hub you get, it will probably take a 3-spline sprocket. 18-t is standard as far as I am aware. 20-t sprockets are available from Shimano as a spare part (no, I don't know the part number). You might find that having the lower gear encourages you to improve your spinning.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Sat May 08, 2010 8:16 pm

Thanks for the gear inches lessons. Trust me, there wont be any spinning being done on this machine. Cruisy rides on a bike path with the kids or a dash to the shops will be the extent of it.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby rkelsen » Sat May 08, 2010 9:17 pm

46/18 isn't a bad choice, especially if it's just for cruisin'... 8)
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Re: My single speed build

Postby greenbike » Sun May 09, 2010 8:34 pm

its lookin good so far. Im running 45/17 which is close to a 48/18 and thats fine for commuting around and through the city.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby hartleymartin » Wed May 12, 2010 11:54 pm

Dahondude wrote:Image


What you need to do now is to get yourself a gold paint pen and line those lugs! Here is a nice DIY primer on the subject.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Thu May 13, 2010 11:01 am

hartleymartin wrote:
Dahondude wrote:Image


What you need to do now is to get yourself a gold paint pen and line those lugs! Here is a nice DIY primer on the subject.


Ohhh yeaaaaaah. Like that idea. Though the priority is wheels, seat post, saddle and a chain ATM!
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Re: My single speed build

Postby flashrider » Thu May 13, 2010 11:34 pm

Though the priority is wheels, seat post, saddle and a chain ATM!


Check the member selling bits of his Casseroll on the Marketplace. Great wheelset for very reasonable dollars..
Projectus Distractus Maxima.
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Fri May 14, 2010 11:53 am

Thanks Flashrider but I am waiting on a wheelset from International Cycles as I am specifically after a rear single speed coaster brake hub.
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Schwinn Madison single speed
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Re: My single speed build

Postby YoungPodge » Wed Jun 02, 2010 12:03 pm

Looking like a neat little bikepath cruiser/local shop/ride to the station bike. Well done on shoestring budget.
I am guessing that the 48 front is dictated by what was on the bike as salvaged? Bikepath cruising with kids is not likely to be fast - so lower gearing is probably more comfortable than higher gearing, and teaching yourself to spin is not really in the picture.... So a smaller chainring on the front would not go astray. I am assuming that the rear sprocket size is dictated by what is available with a coaster brake, which is likely to limit your choices a bit.
Also, the coaster brake on the rear with a caliper on the front makes sense in the intended use you are describing. Coaster brake hubs tend to last forever and not stuff up. So "complexity" is over rated here!
Lets see the piccies of the finished bike!
Good fun project. I nearly did one a year or two ago, from a similar 80's steel frame. Got lazy, spent actual $$ and bought a new single speed to commute on....
Why am I wasting perfectly good riding time sitting in front of a computer?
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Wed Jun 02, 2010 2:42 pm

Thanks for the comments. Still waiting for my wheels to get built.....

Yes the 48 front chainring is what was on there when I found the bike. The small chain ring is way too small. And I dont want to buy a new crankset cos the old one has come up nice and shiny and hasn't cost me anything.

YoungPodge wrote:Good fun project. I nearly did one a year or two ago, from a similar 80's steel frame. Got lazy, spent actual $$ and bought a new single speed to commute on....


Don't let that stop you! Ive got two road bikes (1991 and 2001 vintage), a commuter MTb that I converted to SS for taking the kids to school/kindy, a fold up Dahon 16", a single speed/fixed Schwinn Madison that I bought off the shelf and am now building this single speed coaster. Nothing better than walking into the shed every morning and thinking "now which bike do I ride today?"
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Thu Jul 01, 2010 8:42 pm

Finally got my new wheels....27" coaster brake rear hub (got ripped off by the LBS who quoted me $55 per wheel and then charged me $169 once I turned up to collect them). Anyway the alignment of the rear cog to the chain ring isnt great, so was wondering if anyone knows if I can improve the alignment. Its a cheap hub and the cog is held on with a wire clip, rather than being screwed on. The gap between the drops is larger than the width of the hub so I can only think of packing the non-cog side of the axle with washers, which will eliminate compression of the rear end of the frame and effectively move the rear cog away from the centre line of the bike.

Just need to get some tyres, a chain, seatpost and saddle and I will post some more pics
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Re: My single speed build

Postby Dahondude » Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:54 pm

Finally found time to finish this bike. Happy with everything except the rear hub...its a piece of junk and I got badly ripped off. Will have to buy a Shimano Single Speed Coaster brake hub off the interweb and start learning how to build up a wheel. Anyway while the existing coaster hub still works its alot of fun doing skids :D

And still trying to find a paint pen to highlight all the lugwork

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