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Possible SS/FG bike for newb

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Possible SS/FG bike for newb

Old 09-28-22, 09:25 AM
  #1  
downtube42
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Possible SS/FG bike for newb

I've wanted a fixed gear bike since reading Sheldon Brown's article years ago, but it never happened. A few weeks ago, I rode a 1000k brevet, and one guy in our group switched to his fixie for day 3. He'd bent a rim on his geared bike on day 2. So basically I rode with the dude for much of the 200 mile day, and my interest is re-ignited.

Then this shows up

https://portland.craigslist.org/mlt/...531600264.html

My size, fits my wallet, and I have a soft spot for beater bikes. Basically I want to determine if I'll like fg or not. I do my own wrenching, so a project doesn't concern me.

Does this seem okay, for my purposes?

Thanks
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Old 09-28-22, 10:55 AM
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Broctoon
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Decent steel frame and a good platform for restoring or fixing up according to your preferences. I think you can't go wrong for $100.
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Old 09-28-22, 05:39 PM
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$100. I would get on that quickly . If you have a mind to these are cool https://www.paragonmachineworks.com/...er-opener.html
My Centurion https://www.pedalroom.com/bike/centu...ack-bike-36866
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Old 09-29-22, 10:27 PM
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Acquired! I rode it home, about 11 miles. It's set up SS, so no challenge learning fixed yet. The 25mm tires felt like riding on razer blades, after riding 32mm tires for the last few years. Fun ride though.

Gearing is 48x18 ss, 16 fixed. I think way too tall for me, around here.

Some surprisingly good things - wheels are true, BB feels good, front hub is smooth, crankset is Surly, rear hub is Surly ss/fg, front brake is 105. Downsides - rear hub is crunchy, handlebars are fugly.

I'm trying to figure out the rear hub; pretty sure it's not right. It looks like maybe a 120mm hub that's been spaced to 130mm with an axle nut?

Edit: Thinking about it, I guess the uneven spacers means the wheel is dished, right? Is this the result of converting a geared bike to ss/fixed? Sorry, being a newb, need to read more.

The free side pressed bearing is smooth, but the fixed side is trash. I don't have proper tools to service the hub, so I'll try the local bike Co op.

I'm not clear what vintage the Surly hub is yet, but it looks like I could buy the Ultra New Axle Kit at 130mm and straighten things out.

Thinking about it, is the uneven axle spacer a consequence of this being a geared bike converted to fixed? Sorry, such a newb.

Last edited by downtube42; 09-30-22 at 08:00 AM.
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Old 10-10-22, 09:56 AM
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It's taken me a while to figure out what's going on with rear triangle spacing and alignment on this bike, but I see now what was done with the SS/FG conversion. What I don't understand is why it was done this way, and if I can do anything at this point.

For measuring alignment I used a string from the dropouts and around the head tube. Per the specs, the frame was originally 126 mm spacing. It's now 130. The driveside has been moved 7mm to the right (seen from the rear), and the non-driveside has been moved 3mm, also to the right. 126+7-3 = 130.

The wheel has a 120mm Surly SS/FG hub, not dished. There's a 10mm nut added to the drive-side axle as a spacer inside the dropout. 120+10 = 130.

The wheel can be flipped, the nut moved to whichever side is drive side, chainline is perfect, and the rim is perfectly centered in the frame.

Why did they do this? It works, but switching between SS and FG isn't as simple as it could be. All I can think of is, they had a 120mm hub, and this was their best idea of how to accommodate that hub. It seems to me a better solution would have been to move each dropout 3mm and use the 120mm hub without a spacer. Then switching between SS and FG would be straightforward, which is what I want. Makes no sense to me.

All I can think to do at this point is either just ride it as-is and carry tools when I might want to switch on the road, or (re-)cold-set the drive side a whopping 10mm to use the hub without spacer.

Last edited by downtube42; 11-10-22 at 11:31 PM.
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Old 10-10-22, 11:30 AM
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This sounds like "I've got a 10mm nut and nothing else. I want to go 126 to 130 on the frame and 120 to 130 on the hub and not spend a cent. How do I do it?"

So now, the left dropout is set at 120. The right at 130. (Yes, odd!) If I were you, I'd bring both to 63mm off center; in other words, a proper 126. Get 3mm of spacers for each side of the hub and have a simple 126 symmetrical fix-free and do it with as little bending as possible. (Yes, I prefer 120s for fix/single speed but I also try to do as few bends as possible to lightweight frames. You're in Portland. Finding a qualified framebuilder/mechanic to do the bending is easy.)

I currently run regular 120s on two of my fix gears and 126 on my Mooney which I stretched from 120 to 126 3 decades ago. Fix-fix flipables on all but my 120 commuter. (The Mooney carries a little dish but that's because I run an unusual drivetrain setup.)

Edit: I sometimes carry spare hub huts because I flip the wheel so often. (I've done mountain rides with 10 flips.) My hubs are Miches which have served me well except they skipped the machining touch of the groove in the axle and a lockwasher with the nib. So the cone and lockwasher move over time and lots of wheel flips. Sometimes the locknut unscrews. Next hub flip, I crush that loose locknut and it breaks. Easy makeshift on-the-road repair? Replace both the nut and washer with a hub nut. Not perfect. Takes a little forcing of the dropouts. Chainline is a little off. But it finishes any ride just fine. And looks a lot like your current setup!

Last edited by 79pmooney; 10-10-22 at 11:40 AM.
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Old 10-19-22, 08:46 AM
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If it works, I would run the hub as is. Find some handlebars and a 44 tooth chainring for it. Get a Surly Tuggnut on that thing also.
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Old 10-28-22, 07:19 AM
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The Centurion was built to be 126 mm, I suspect, and I would return it to that. I run Surly New Track hubs like that on my Mercian Vincitore (120 mm spaced rear) and my '73 Raleigh Competition (126 mm spacing, hub set up with 3 mm spacers on each side between cone and locknut). BOTH bikes are kitted out with hollow axles and traditional steel q/r skewers with internal cams (Atom/Maillard), facilitating flip/flop use. Some folks will shake their heads and insist that track nuts are the only safe way to do this, forgetting that Campagnolo used to sell their track hubs with q/r sets before tracks started banning them.

The stock Surly bearings are kinda meh. I had Phil Wood bearings installed in my Mercian's rear hub and the difference is astounding.
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Old 10-28-22, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
The Centurion was built to be 126 mm, I suspect, and I would return it to that. I run Surly New Track hubs like that on my Mercian Vincitore (120 mm spaced rear) and my '73 Raleigh Competition (126 mm spacing, hub set up with 3 mm spacers on each side between cone and locknut). BOTH bikes are kitted out with hollow axles and traditional steel q/r skewers with internal cams (Atom/Maillard), facilitating flip/flop use. Some folks will shake their heads and insist that track nuts are the only safe way to do this, forgetting that Campagnolo used to sell their track hubs with q/r sets before tracks started banning them.

The stock Surly bearings are kinda meh. I had Phil Wood bearings installed in my Mercian's rear hub and the difference is astounding.
I agree concerning the issue of FG and QR axles. So long as it is a quality QR such as Shimano or Campagnolo of the enclosed-cam variety. Here's Sheldon Brown's take on it.

Quick-Release or Nutted?

Track hubs generally come with solid axles and track nuts. This is because most velodromes have rules requiring this type of wheel attachment.As a result, it is widely believed that quick-release axles are not suitable for fixed-gear use. This is false!

It is my belief that the velodrome rule dates back to long before the invention of the quick-release, when the choices were standard nuts or wingnuts. The protruding "wings" of wingnuts might constitute a hazard in a crash, and I believe that's why the rule was instituted. Since quick-release skewers don't have any sharp projections, that becomes a non-issue in practice.

If you are going to use a quick release with a fixed gear, you should make sure to use a good quality enclosed-cam skewer.
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Old 10-28-22, 10:57 PM
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Originally Posted by TugaDude View Post
I agree concerning the issue of FG and QR axles. So long as it is a quality QR such as Shimano or Campagnolo of the enclosed-cam variety. Here's Sheldon Brown's take on it.

Quick-Release or Nutted?

Track hubs generally come with solid axles and track nuts. This is because most velodromes have rules requiring this type of wheel attachment.As a result, it is widely believed that quick-release axles are not suitable for fixed-gear use. This is false!

It is my belief that the velodrome rule dates back to long before the invention of the quick-release, when the choices were standard nuts or wingnuts. The protruding "wings" of wingnuts might constitute a hazard in a crash, and I believe that's why the rule was instituted. Since quick-release skewers don't have any sharp projections, that becomes a non-issue in practice.

If you are going to use a quick release with a fixed gear, you should make sure to use a good quality enclosed-cam skewer.
Hard to argue withSheldon Brown though I do like a nutted axle looks wise on a fixed gear but beyond that don't care.

DT Swiss RWS skewer would be my choice for a fixed gear or really any quick release. I love my Paul ones they are pretty and work like a charm but I do think the RWS is kind of superior and in usage they are fantastic with no slippage or any issues and I can move the handle wherever I want it. Plus they work like how some people incorrectly use standard QR levers so it can make it easier for beginners as well.
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Old 10-29-22, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by veganbikes View Post
... but I do think that the (DT Swiss) RWS is kind of superior and in usage they are fantastic with no slippage or any issues and I can move the handle wherever I want it. Plus they work like how some people incorrectly use standard QR levers so it can make it easier for beginners as well.
Just one cautionary note that the threads on the aluminum nut can strip if you tighten it too much. I replaced it with a steel nut from an older Shimano QR skewer.
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Old 10-29-22, 08:48 AM
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Love the information shared from people who actually have used the products! The DT-Swiss RWS Skewer system sounds great and I did some quick research on them and am impressed enough that they are going on my Christmas list I think. I see they also offer a steel version now, according to one website.

Personally I don't care if they weigh a little more if they are more durable potentially. I guess it is like anything else in that if you use them properly and don't abuse them, the aluminum ones are just fine. Doesn't hurt to go for the more robust ones if you are concerned though.

I also checked out the ones from Paul Components and like everything Paul, they look amazing. But the price? You really have to want that brand I guess. The less expensive DT-Swiss alternative looks awesome.
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Old 10-30-22, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by TugaDude View Post
Love the information shared from people who actually have used the products! The DT-Swiss RWS Skewer system sounds great and I did some quick research on them and am impressed enough that they are going on my Christmas list I think. I see they also offer a steel version now, according to one website.

Personally I don't care if they weigh a little more if they are more durable potentially. I guess it is like anything else in that if you use them properly and don't abuse them, the aluminum ones are just fine. Doesn't hurt to go for the more robust ones if you are concerned though.

I also checked out the ones from Paul Components and like everything Paul, they look amazing. But the price? You really have to want that brand I guess. The less expensive DT-Swiss alternative looks awesome.
Yeah they are ridiculous, at the time I was like I want the ultimate touring bike from what I knew and what I could do from the shop I worked at. Now I would do it slightly differently but at the time I didn't want to do a lot of compromising from what I thought then was good (and a lot of it still is) and would do a similar style but different gearing and probably thru-axles at this point even. If I was redoing the build from the time I would have done those DT-Swiss skewers had I known they were so awesome but the Paul ones are nice and I like Paul and I want him to be around for a long time. I like good 'Murican companies and he seems to have one.
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Old 10-31-22, 06:02 AM
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Originally Posted by veganbikes View Post
Yeah they are ridiculous, at the time I was like I want the ultimate touring bike from what I knew and what I could do from the shop I worked at. Now I would do it slightly differently but at the time I didn't want to do a lot of compromising from what I thought then was good (and a lot of it still is) and would do a similar style but different gearing and probably thru-axles at this point even. If I was redoing the build from the time I would have done those DT-Swiss skewers had I known they were so awesome but the Paul ones are nice and I like Paul and I want him to be around for a long time. I like good 'Murican companies and he seems to have one.
And the one thing that folks need to remember is the variety of colors offered on many of his products. The owner of a local bike shop has a Surly Cross Check he built up with purple-anodized components and many of them were Paul's. It looks amazing. The frame is black and the purple really pops.

So if you are looking to express yourself, it is a cool way to go about it.
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