MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

 

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MY "TEN SPEEDS"

 

 

POOR BOY  SS - INTRO

BUILDING THE POOR BOY SS

 POOR BOY SS - UPGRADE

RIDING THE POOR BOY SS 

 

BICYCLES OF CANADA

POOR BOY "SINGLE SPEED" - INTRODUCTION

"Ten Speed" bicycles, converted to "Single Speed" design, have become very popular, these days.  There are a number of very good reasons, for this current rise in popularity, that include low cost, "user friendly", when compared "as made", unique, when compared to just about every other bicycle on earth, and finally, built just the way the owner wants it.  It should be noted that, should the builder work from a wish list, and go for the best of the best, for during every aspect of the build, then the cost will not be low.  However...

Converting and old "Ten Speed", to a "Single Speed", can be incredibly inexpensive, if you can settle for good enough.  Good enough?  Good enough, for the Poor Boy "Single Speed", means replace/repair only what is absolutely necessary, to ensure that the bicycle is safe, and dependable, to ride.  This will likely mean, replace tires, brake cables, brake pads and handlebar tape.  Clean and polish to your heart's content, until the bicycle looks as good as you can get it, without spending any money, other than for some wax and  the mentioned bar tape.

One can save even more expense, by building a "Single Speed" Junk Bike (JB).  The good enough "Single Speed" Junk Bike is the same as above, without any "look good" requirements attached.  In fact, approach the JB build from the other end and seek "looks like junk" hence the name - Junk Bike.  When selecting anything for a Junk Bike, banged up is OK, as long as it works correctly.  Rusted is OK, as long as it works correctly.  Dented frame tubes or ugly paint are is OK, as long as the frame and fork set is straight.

Of course, the question that comes to mind is, why bother to build an ugly bicycle?  An ugly bicycle with, scuffed-up components, is not thief proof but it certainly is less attractive than a nice shiny bike.  It is OK, if the bicycle falls over, while parked.  A scratch upon a rusted, faded, already scratched surface is not all the upsetting.  And, the Junk Bike is great for inclement weather conditions, such as rain or the spring thaw, that those of us, in the northern locations, experience each year.  Who cares if the bikes gets a bit dirty, so long as the chain is clean and oiled regularly.

Building a Poor Boy "Single Speed" is not nearly as skill demanding, as building a "Single Speed" itself.  The Poor Boy does not require the installation of a new single cog freewheel, hence no need to purchase a freewheel puller.  Since the freewheel is not going to be replaced, there is no need to space the rear hub, to accommodate the narrower "SS" freewheel.  Since the spacing of the rear hub is unchanged, there is no need to alter the rear wheel's hub to rim relationship, commonly referred to as "the wheel dish".  Adjusting the dish, of the rear wheel, is probably the most skill demanding part of any "Single Speed" conversion.

Turning one's attention to the crank set, it too can remain virtually unaltered.  There will be no need to cut, grind, file and polish to get the crank and ring set in shape.  Now, this is not really a cost saving consideration since it costs very little to convert most crank sets.  The task, however,  is time consuming.  Other than cosmetic appeal, the only advantage that the rider will experience is the slight reduction in weight, thanks to the discarded big ring, and in many cases, ring guard.

Other than those issues just mentioned, building a "Single Speed" and a Poor Boy SS are pretty much identical.

NEXT - BUILDING THE POOR BOY "SS"

 

 

     

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