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Single speed to 12 speed
#1
I bought a road bike today and the previous owner used it mostly for commuting, so he converted it from a 12 speed to fixed. I am going to use it more for triathlons and such, so I was wondering how to convert it back. I am new to bikes so have no clue how to go about this. If it ends up being too much for me, I would be willing to take it to a repair shop, so what would be a reasonable price for that?
Thanks!
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#2
Depends on what the previous owner did. Some of those fixie-hipsters file down / saw off mounting points you need for the rear dérailleur or the down tube shifters...
Off the top of my head you will need:
- pair of down tube shifters (or bar end shifters) + maybe mounting hardware
- rear dérailleur (7 speed, no difference to 6 speed)
- new rear wheel (or wheel to be relaced with a new hub)
- freewheel or cassette (depends on hub)
- front dérailleur
- crank set
- cables, housing, ferrules
The most expensive part will be the rear wheel, unless you get a decent used one from the bike shop. What you can do is:
- measure width of rear drop outs, if it is less than 130mm and it is a steel frame: respace the frame
- get a new(-ish) rear wheel with a freehub
- get a cassette (might as well go for 10 speeds if you go for the non-indexed (or friction) down tube (or even better: bar end!) shifters)
- get a crank set (probably a Campagnolo one, as you'll likely have a square taper bottom bracket)
- get front and rear dérailleurs
- get (now that I think of it) bar end friction shifters to be mounted on the extensions
- get triathlon / aero bars (to mount the aforementioned shifters to)

None of this is particularly difficult. It is (in total) a substantial amount of work and some money you'll need to invest. Measure the frame first, then think about # of gears you want. For Triathlon a tight gear spacing makes sense as you want to keep your cadence and power (how fast you spin and how hard you pedal) at a (more or less) fixed output, so that would be a 10 speed cassette (10 sprockets on the rear), 12-25 or 11-23 (# of teeth on largest and smallest sprocket). Having the shifters on the aerobar extensions is very nice. I don't have that as I use a modern road bike with STIs. Just make sure to read the race rules before you enter: drafting races do not allow this kind of setup! Shifters mounted to long extensions are only allowed in non-drafting races! Friction shifters means that you can mix and match components by probably all brands without having to worry about the indexing, that is the position the shifter clicks to has to match the position the rear dérailleur finds the gear.
Note that you can get a decent set of entry level wheels (eg. Mavic Aksium or something by Shimano) for not too much money...
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#3
(06-02-2012, 09:47 PM)mynameisamyw Wrote:  .......what would be a reasonable price for that?

$1000- to $1500- range.

Such conversions are a labor of love, taking many hours.

The least expensive way to get a multi-speed road bike is to buy one.
Nigel
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#4
Quote:$1000- to $1500- range.

Such conversions are a labor of love, taking many hours.

The least expensive way to get a multi-speed road bike is to buy one.

What!

Provided the previous owner hasn't altered the frame by removing the derailleur hanger it shouldn't cost anything like that.

New front and rear mech, shifters, cables, front chainset, chain, casette, bottom bracket and posibly a new rear wheel with a freehub . You could do that for $100 to $150 if you shop around and perhaps bought some parts used, mechs and shifters for example. $500 would buy some pretty nice, near top of the range components and I reckon I could fit all the parts and have it up and running in about 2 hours.
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#5
Yeah, there's a lot of ways to do this. The first big decision is whether you want to return it to it's original 12 speed state or upgrade it to a more current 9/10 speed, indexed, integrated brake/shifter kind of condition. The former is a few hundred dollar job, the later, you may just want to buy a new bike.

One big question is what type of rear wheel is on there now. If it is a true fixed gear wheel, probably best to get a new rear wheel (though a flip-flop hub could be converted for multi-speed use fairly easily). If it's the old freewheel style wheel that the guy kludged into a fix, much easier to just put a freewheel back on and that saves a lot.

Perfect world - you find a used bike with a damaged frame cheap and swap over the components.
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#6
(06-04-2012, 03:45 AM)xerxes Wrote:  
Quote:$1000- to $1500- range.

Such conversions are a labor of love, taking many hours.

The least expensive way to get a multi-speed road bike is to buy one.

What!

........ I reckon I could fit all the parts and have it up and running in about 2 hours.

Xerxes; You are a LOT faster than the mechanics around here; and the shop rate is $75- to $100- per hour.
Nigel
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#7
Quote:Xerxes; You are a LOT faster than the mechanics around here; and the shop rate is $75- to $100- per hour.

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/5eCdIe0wdvU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Big Grin
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