MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

SITE INDEX   FINDING   BICYCLES   WORK SHOP   TRADING   WHAT'S NEW?

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

CUSTOM OPTIONS- INTRO

CUSTOM BIKE ACCESSORIES

THE ORIGINAL SINGLE SPEED

ENHANCING VISUAL APPEAL

SINGLE SPEED UPGRADES 

CUSTOM SS OPTIONS - INTRODUCTION

Not everyone wants a nice shiny new/old "Ten Speed" bicycle to ride.  For a variety of reasons, some people want an ugly bicycle to take to the store or wherever.  The theory is that an ugly bicycle will not attract thieves.  And not everyone wants a kazillion speeds either.  A simple light old road bicycle with a single gear, commonly referred to as a "Single Speed" is all that is needed.  With these two considerations in mind it is not unusual to find a person who wants either a Junk Bike or a Single Speed, perhaps even a Fixed Gear mount.

"Single Speed" bicycles can be easily made by following a few relatively simple steps to convert an old "Ten Speed".  Once converted, the "Single Speed" steed becomes a remarkably decent city bicycle that finds itself more at home on the busy city streets than just about any other old road bicycle.  With no gears to shift, the rider need never take his hands from the handlebars.  He or she need never have to look to see what gear they are in.  The rider can simply focus on controlling the bicycle, worrying only about pedalling and stopping.

A variation of the "Single Speed" and certainly as popular in a trendy sense, is the Fixed Gear bicycle.  My experience with fixed gear builds is minimal.  I did, however, build one Fixie up for a fellow in Eastern Canada once.  Sadly, thanks to a screw-up on the part of the company supplying the Flip-Flop hub, I never actually completed the bicycle and ride it as a Fixed Gear.  I did test the bike with a "Single Speed" freewheel and found the converted Peugeot to be a pleasure to ride.  Though I did, and still do, have reservations about riding a fixed gear in traffic I can see why someone would want that extra degree of "connection" to a bicycle.  Just not too sure if it is safe in traffic...  Of course, I have never ridden a Fixed Gear bicycle, but I have built one.

I do wish that I had pictures of that first, and only at this point in time, "Fixed Gear" build.  The build was based on an early eighties Peugeot Super Sport, as I recall.  The bike was ordered to specification.  The seat post needed to be 60cm(c-c), and the appearance cosmetically challenged.  The rougher the bicycle looked, the better.  In other words, build up a "Fixed Gear Junk Bike" based on a brand name vintage road bicycle frame and fork set.  I took lots of pictures but all were lost in a major computer melt down.  Too bad.  And I still do not save as often as I should.  At least I quit smoking!

The "Junk Bike" is achieving a growing following.  Riders who  spend a lot of time with their bicycles, running errands, commuting to and from work or just using their bikes as simple transportation, see the "Junk Bike" as a big plus aimed at theft prevention.  Though the term "Junk Bike" might suggest a lesser steed, nothing could be further from the truth.  The lesser steed, I call a "Poor Boy".  A "Junk Bike" is usually a well made bicycle, sporting quality materials and craftsmanship while being outfitted with a good quality "user friendly" component grouppo that need not necessarily match.

Believe it or not, several other people have commissioned me to build them up a "Junk Bike".  These people want a vintage road bicycle that presents an image of worthlessness to the average thief and yet fits into the owner's concept of style at the same time.  And, they also want the bicycle to work really good!  Top of the line components, the more scuffed up the better, are usually added to a good quality frame set.  The components selected do not even have to match.  But they must work well and work well together!  The result, a bicycle that offers a style statement, is very comfortable and easy to ride, and does not tend to trail a "Steal Me" banner everywhere it goes.  The result, a bicycle that can be leaned against a wall without fear of scuffing up an already scuffed up but remarkably comfortable saddle.  The result, a bicycle that will sit by itself, hour after hour in the rain, while you wile your time away indoors somewhere earning your daily bread, and not giving your trusty steed a second thought.  Try doing that with your Cinelli chained up in the parking lot.

I will build anything for anyone as long as the build is connected to a vintage road bicycle.  I will build anything for anyone but I will in no way modify a frame or fork set to accommodate a person's wishes.  Any conversion that I make to a bicycle is reversible.  The only things changed are the components.  I do not even like changing paint and art work.  The bicycle's patina of age must be drastic before I will even consider a paint job.  Someone wiser than me once said, "It can be restored a hundred times, but it can be original only once."  Give that thought some thought before you file off those shift lever braze-ons.

The "Single Speed" converted "Ten Speed" is about the most popular custom road bicycle today.  That, incidentally, is just an opinion.  But, with that opinion, in mind, let's take a good look at the "Singe Speed" road bicycle, how to build it and why you would even want to.

NEXT - SINGLE SPEED ACCESSORIES

 

 

     

SITE INDEX   FINDING   BICYCLES   WORK SHOP   TRADING   WHAT'S NEW?

mail@mytenspeeds.com

COPYRIGHT(2008): mytenspeeds.com