I've been trying to save up a few dollars to buy a roadbike for the past year. I had almost had all the money I needed when of course something came up that drained the bike fund. My truck died so I had to use my bike money for a down payment on a new truck.
Recently a friend from work ask me to look at his mountain bike (1994 Cannondale M500) to see if there was any way to make it more comfortable to ride. He had been trying to sell it for $200 and even had it for sale at the local bike shop but with no luck. So I picked it up at the shop, took it home and put it in my workshop. While looking at the bike I could tell it had never been off road. I talked to my friend about it and he said he only road it on the pavement for a couple of years back in the mid 90's.
I threw it up on the bike stand and stepped back to take a look. This bike definitely had potential. Plus I was needing a bike to use in a triathlon I got talked into doing.
I removed all the racks, the cantilever brakes, toe clips, Zoom stem extender
and the very odd seat. It was a spit seat that moved with your butt cheeks.
I gathered up all my old parts laying around the workshop and started bolting them on. Starting with an old set of V-Brakes and Avid levers, Mavic 238 wheelset, Specialized seat, clipless pedals, straight bar and bar ends and an old set of road tires. I took it for a test spin and knew I had something. So I ordered up a new 27 speed drivetrain thanks to a Nashbar gift certificate I had been dying to use since Christmas and a set Hutchinson Top Slick road tires. Total price of the project came in at $300. Now that it finished I can't wait to put some miles on it this summer. She weighs in at 22 lbs and doesn't look too shabby for and old bike and some used parts.
In 94 I too bought an M500, a 20 incher I got for $700 on sale. It was a great deal, but a bit too big, a fact I didn't really want to admit until I'd been riding it for over a year. Once I rode a friend's 18 I realized that was the Cannondale size I should have got. I had a 66 mile bike race/fundraiser that summer so I set it up as roadbike with slicks and that is where it kicked a$$. I had a blast and kept riding it on the road and off a little for several years until I gave it to a friend when I watched his bike literally fall apart one day. He still rides that M500. Those are solid frames and although big, it always felt light to me on the road, until I got my Trek Cyclocross bike a few years back. Great work - have a blast!! Is that the slightly irridescent paint on there?