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Please help someone new to roadbikes!(10 posts)

Please help someone new to roadbikes!Taggart
Sep 10, 2001 5:48 PM
A friend of mine siad he had an old fuji i could have. I of course accepted. The bike is just plain in horrible shape. I want to get it into condition to ride in, but i relaly do not know were to start! It is 12!!! speed. I would like to upgrade the drivetrain obviously. The shifiting is accomplished via lever on the down tube. Is that normal? The brakes are like the size of a half dollar. Perhaps the only good thing is that the wheels seem true. Do you think this is a waste of money or somethin i should try to work with? Thanks!
re: Please help someone new to roadbikes!GregJ
Sep 10, 2001 6:05 PM
If you can get this bike in rideable condition by cleaning it up, replacing the old tires, tubes and brake pads go for it. You may also want to recable it. It will be quite a bit of money to upgrade the drivetrain, and IMHO not worth it. There is nothing wrong with down-tube levers(they were "normal" till about 8 years ago). But if you want a more up to date bike I suggest buying something new or used.
I agree with one exception...MrCelloBoy
Sep 10, 2001 6:49 PM
You can easily upgrade to a 7 speed cog without major hassles. As long as the shifters have a friction mode.
Even that one add'l. cog will make life easier.
The brakes are probably fine though you might want to put new pads on.
See what a local bike shop'll charge for a "tune up".
I agree with one exception...vanzutas
Sep 11, 2001 8:17 AM
If the shifters are indexed I would not go to 7 speed and revert to friction shifting. The extra gear will not make up for the extra hassle it will be to shift.

I had an older 12 speed bike, I rode it a lot and really liked the frame so I upgraded to 8 spd. sti this year. it cost a little over $300 by the time I was done. For me it was worth it because I liked the frame and it fit me. but I know I could have gotten a comparable bike for my moneyif I had bought used.
I did a 6 to 7-speed conversion on my MTB ...Humma Hah
Sep 11, 2001 11:52 AM
... when I bought an obsolete but unused surplus rear wheel for it. A new 7-speed Shimano corncob cost $21 and screwed right on (OK, I also bought the $6 tool), allowing me to use the wheel with my 7-speed indexed shifter.

However, I personally would not bother to do this, at least initially. 12 gears will get the job done. If this rider likes riding enough, I suspect a very nice bike will be under the Christmas tree.
A lovely old beater bike ...Humma Hah
Sep 10, 2001 7:38 PM
... every cyclist should have one like that, at least as a backup bike, commuter, etc. There are places you won't go, and things you won't do, on $2000 racers and $4000 custom bikes.

Don't spend much money on it. Whatever you do, don't try to "upgrade" the bike to modern specs. It is what it is. 12 gears is actually plenty, unless you're in the Rockies or something. Replace what is worn and rusty, like the chain, cables, brake pads. Pull the bearings on the wheels, crank, and headset, dig the chewing-gum old grease out, put some fresh in.

If the wheels are still reasonably round, just put fresh tires and tubes in (you'll go thru those fast anyway). If the wheels are warped beyond repair, look for used replacements.

Down-tube shifters are old-fashioned, but work.

The right rider on a bike like that can keep up with modern roadbikes just fine.

I'm looking for an even older bike.
True--I won't park my bike anywhere. I guess I need one too (nm)Chris Zeller
Sep 11, 2001 7:34 AM
re: Please help someone new to roadbikes!Me Dot Org
Sep 10, 2001 8:26 PM
Right now I'm riding an 18-year old Fuji about 150 miles a week. It has 18 speeds, which simply means it has a triple crank in front instead of a double crank like a 12-speed. (Both have a 6 speed cassette in the rear).

Fuji had a reputation for making some pretty good low and mid-priced bicycles back in the 80's - nothing wrong with starting out on one.

Today's bikes come with index shifters, which are much easier to shift, but once you get the hang of down-tube shifters it isn't that difficult.

I would either fix up the Fuji "as is" (meaning don't go throw a lot of new components on it, other than new brake pads, tires, chain and cables) or get a newer bike with index shifting. I don't think an old Fuji frame would be a good foundation for a lot of new components.
Keep it !davidl
Sep 11, 2001 4:17 AM
I was given a 12 yr. old Cannondale - 7 speed - that's turned into a great bike. Get your bike shop to tune it up and ride it every day. Fuji makes a fine bicycle.
old Fujisalex the engineer
Sep 11, 2001 8:29 AM
These things are a dime a dozen. Even in GOOD shape, it probably isn't worth more than $100, tops. They are, for the most part, heavy, crude, and common as dirt. Bearings and workmanship are decent, however. Consider it a "Japanese Schwinn Varsity".
No, it wouldn't be worth modernising. Just fix whatever needs fixing, and ride it when you want to take a bike that isn't worth a lot. I wouldn't spend more than maybe $75 on it. It just isn't worth it.