First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

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cjrich
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First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby cjrich » Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:35 pm

Hi all

I picked up this Apollo Eclipse at a garage sale for $5 with the intention of making it into a very inexpensive single speed for short rides and the occasional commute. I’ve already cut the bars to bullhorn style, cleaned and repacked the headset, wheel hubs and bottom bracket, changed pedals to SPDs which I had lying around. Trying to keep this as cheap as possible, I’ve compiled a shopping list of parts I think I need. Please take a look and let me know if I may need anything else, or if in fact, I’m wasting my $ on this project?

- Halo Hex Skewers (frame has horizontal dropouts with quick release wheels that may slip)
- 27” tires & tubes
- Brake cables (current cables working OK so these will be one of the last things I purchase if all else goes well)
- Brake pads
- S/S Crankset & Freewheel (not sure what ratio yet) are cheap ones OK?
- Chain
- Chain tensioner??


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Thanks for looking
CJ
CJ
- 2015 Cervelo R3
- 2014 Avanti Blade 3

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jaseyjase
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Re: First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby jaseyjase » Thu Aug 18, 2016 3:24 pm

Is the rear cassette a freewheel or freehub?

technically you dont have to buy anything if its usable.

Grind cranks or unbolt, keep the main ring
shorten chain.
remove RD/FD, QR should be ok

Only real issue is rear wheel, if freewheel you will need to remove and replace with SS/BMX freewheel. if cassette then you'll need to buy a single speed converter kit, ie mainly a single cog and spacers to fit on the freehub.

thats if you want to spend as little as possible

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nickobec
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Re: First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby nickobec » Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:36 pm

cjrich wrote:Please take a look and let me know if I may need anything else, or if in fact, I’m wasting my $ on this project?


Halo Hex Skewers (frame has horizontal dropouts with quick release wheels that may slip)
Stick with the QR, even though both my single speeds are nutted. I used a similar skewers on a chromed semi horizontal dropouts on a geared bike, and they slipped on occassions. A good QR now being used, does not slip.

27” tires & tubes
27" tires your choice is cheap and nasty or cheap and nasty. Don't expect great grip. 700c tubes are all you need.

Brake cables (current cables working OK so these will be one of the last things I purchase if all else goes well)


Brake pads
Yes, particularly if you have steel rims

S/S Crankset & Freewheel (not sure what ratio yet) are cheap ones OK?
Nothing wrong with you current crankset, just remove the inner chain ring. If you can move the chainring inside, do it, it will give you a better chain line.

Freewheel, I have no issues with the cheaper Dicta freewheels, done probably 4,000km on my current one.

Gear ratio, it varies on your terrain and how you ride. My long haul single speed, which does most of it's work on a very flat 40km one way commute, started as 52/20, then 52/18, 52/17 and finally 52/16.

My short haul coaster braked single speed with full length guards is used for the hilly 2km commute to train station in street clothes is 42/18, should be 42/16 or 17 once I hunt down the right cog, but nothing more.

Chain
If the current one works, just cut down the chain to size. Particularly as you might be changing gear ratio over time.

Chain tensioner??
No need, if you have semi horizontal dropouts

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cjrich
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Re: First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby cjrich » Fri Aug 19, 2016 7:42 am

Thanks for replies. Bike is test ride-able as is so I'll start with the freewheel, brake pads and replace the other parts as I go. Just need to work out how to remove old freewheel as I don't have the correct tool (same as this type but 7 speed)

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CJ
- 2015 Cervelo R3
- 2014 Avanti Blade 3

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bychosis
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Re: First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby bychosis » Fri Aug 19, 2016 8:40 am

Have you worked out what gear ratio you want to run? If not, get the tyres sorted and go for a few rides, leaving it in the gear you think you will run. To keep it really cheap take the derailleur/s off, shorten the chain to suit and re-tension. Those old gears without ramps will run SS well enough.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

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cjrich
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Re: First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby cjrich » Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:28 pm

Thanks for your help so far people, however I have a few more questions.
- So worked out that I need an 18T or 20T freewheel if I stick with the current inside 40T chainring. I see they come in different tooth widths I assume, (1/8" or 3/32"), what width would you recommend, or does it really matter?
- Do all freewheels share the same thread size? Just want to make sure I purchase one that will fit the wheel hub.
- Are freewheel spacers easy to purchase if I need them?

Thanks again
CJ
CJ
- 2015 Cervelo R3
- 2014 Avanti Blade 3

minhyy
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Re: First timer seeking advise on converting old roadie to single speed

Postby minhyy » Tue Aug 23, 2016 9:11 pm

you will be able to use any sensible size freewheel/chainring combination, provided you cut your chain to the correct length

are you basing 18/20t off your current freewheel giving a straight chainline with the inner 40t chainring?

1/8" is a bit more heavy duty while 3/32" is lighter. You can run a 1/8" chain with 3/32" chainrings and cogs, but not vice versa. So, if you are retaining your original 40t chainring (likely to be a 3/32"), you can use either 1/8" or 3/32" chains. Therefore, if you are also reusing the original chain, you will need a 3/32" freewheel.

to achieve ideal chainline with the new freewheel, the rear wheel may have to be redished.
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