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Jerk old bike into 21st Century(13 posts)

Jerk old bike into 21st Centuryscottfree
Jan 16, 2002 8:24 AM
My old bike (Japanese, steel, '85) came with a six-speed freewheel. Good luck finding one these days. I put a 7-speed Sachs on it slick as a whistle recently, good fit, no need even for a spacer. Of course, the freewheel itself cost most than an Ultegra cassette would (law of supply and demand) and I wasn't able to get the combination of cogs I wanted.

I'm pondering getting out from under the freewheel shortage. What would be the chances of success if I just installed a new rear wheel w/8-speed cassette? I know it'd be some pretty close shifting (friction), but would the thing likley be too wide for the dropouts, would there be chainline issues, etc?
no needJack S
Jan 16, 2002 8:50 AM
Loose Screws lists a couple of Shimano HG 6-spd freewheels for $19.95. Probably even more selection in 7-spd. Alot cheaper than a wheel. Also, in case you haven't noticed 8-spd is obsolete as well.
no needscottfree
Jan 16, 2002 9:09 AM
You utterly miss the point. The word 'obsolete' does not pertain. I'm talking availability and possibility of success. A Campy 10-speed is clearly not an option for this bike. In case you haven't noticed, I'm riding a 17-year-old bike with downtube friction shifters, by choice. Tell you anything? Not real concerned about obsolete. The issue is, future availability of freewheels (not just what Loose Screws has right now) means I may have to switch to casettes. Eight speed casettes are still available and probably will remain available for several years, and may work on the bike. This isn't a 'Man, I want to upgrade my Huffy to STI' question.
talk about missing the pointJack S
Jan 16, 2002 9:48 AM
6- and 7-spd freewheels are not that hard to find and will be available for a long time. You can afford to buy more than 1 at a time, right?
talk about missing the pointscottfree
Jan 16, 2002 10:08 AM
Well, gee, now that you put in that way, Jack, let me think. Even Rivendell says Sachs/SRAM is an iffy supply source. Sure, Sunrace and Shimano still sell some cheap-ass freewheels that barely last a season of hard riding. But in just the past two years, the possible cog combinations on available freewheels has contracted dramatically. And the market is fading. Since I live with the situation, I'm aware of these things.

I plan to ride the bike another 20 years. You do the math. Sure I could hoard 30 or 40 freewheels, and sure in coming years I'll be able to scrounge the damn things if not. But I was considering an alternative, just to simplify my life in my old age, and was asking a question about THAT, which Retro actually answered and you did not. In case you didn't notice.
Wow, he was only trying to help.ohio
Jan 16, 2002 2:37 PM
The guy was just answering your question truthfully. If you only wanted to hear a specific answer then don't ask the question to begin with.

The point was that the availability of 8-spd road cassettes is not much better than 6 and 7-spd freewheels, and is not likely to improve. It would be roughly 12-15 cassettes before you made your money back on the new rear wheel, and the wider 8-spd setup might not agree with the lateral range of your current derailleur and shifters. You would gain an extra gear, but you clearly stated that performance enhancement is not a goal, so that doesn't factor in.

I'm with Jack on this one. I'd stick with what you have, especially since it gives you the option of turning the bike into a single/fixed gear pretty easily and that would certainly "simplify your life in your old age."

And next time be nicer to folks that take the time to address a problem YOU posted about. It's not like he was insulting your mother or family name.
Nasty fellah.Sintesi
Jan 17, 2002 8:16 AM
Lot of insecure, misdirected anger there. Ah well, you did nothing wrong Jack. I would have suggested he buy another bike entirely. Who would want to ride a Japanese bike for 40 years anyway? To each his own. : )
Rivendell has freewheels. As for going to 8-speed...Retro
Jan 16, 2002 9:30 AM
I just wedged a new hub, wheel and 8-sp cassette into my wife's old 6-speed Bridgestone. Somebody stole the old rear wheel off the rack (bet he was surprised when he found out it won't work with anything built in this decade), and I had this one left over from a singlespeed conversion.
It was harder than I thought spreading the dropouts to get it in there, but now that it's in, it shifts well in friction mode. She's a very casual rider and would rather have indexing, but she doesn't want to spend any money on something she uses once or twice a month, so...
If you want to stick with freewheels awhile longer, Rivendell claims to have a pretty good supply:
Rivendell has freewheels. As for going to 8-speed...scottfree
Jan 16, 2002 9:37 AM
Good answer. Did you just 'spread' the dropouts by hand as you were wedging the wheel in, or did you actually do some cold-setting using a 2-by-four?
yes ,you can go 8 speedDave Hickey
Jan 16, 2002 11:46 AM
Old steel dropouts will spread to fit 8 speed. I've done it with a couple of 80's steel frames. No special tools. just spread and put the wheel in.
you meant <i>JERK's</i> old bike into <i>20th</i> centurywhat an ass!
Jan 16, 2002 2:13 PM
You CAN find plenty of 6 or 7-speed (even 5s) Reginas, Maillards, etc. pretty easily, and usually <$50.

And spreading the rear dropout width 4mm by cold-setting is a total no-brainer.
Hey, What-an-ass, you feeling better about yourself now?Small Ring
Jan 17, 2002 8:05 AM
Hey, man, you really slammed THAT guy. But you you know in your heart you're still a flopdick.
it's timespdplayr
Jan 19, 2002 9:31 PM
ok. this is way un-pc, but i feel it is due time i reveal on this board something that i read on a gizmo board about a month ago: a guy posted a thread that was taking a turn for the nasty that said, "insulting someone on a discussion board during an "argument" is like participating in the special olympics-- no matter how much effort you put into it, at the end of the day, you're still retarded."
let's grow up folks.