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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am seriously considering aquiring or converting a singlespeed.

Right now there are two bikes in my garage which don't get ridden a lot as is - and therefore might be good candidates for conversion. the first is a circa 1990 Ritchey P23 with 7sp components, the second is an early 2000's Trek 8500 hard tail.

Any thoughts as to which one might be easier/better to convert? Both have vertical dropouts, the Trek is currently 8sp with a cassette and the std 42/32/22 front, while the Ritchey is 7sp and has a larger crank - 46/36/24. Neither frame is set up for discs, so I'll go V's.

I'm in New England, so any help on appropriate gearing is helpful - Thinking of starting with around 32/20 or thereabouts.

Thanks
 

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local trails rider
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It is easier and cheaper to put a single cog on a cassette wheel. I'm pretty sure you can put the cassette wheel on either bike.
 

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rebmem rbtm
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Ritchey for me as well. It's a great frame and can benefit from nice parts
A white industries eno rear hub and re-lace the back wheel on that Ritchey. No chain tensioner needed.
Use your current cranks and get a 34 tooth 110 BCD chainring from Salsa.
Pair it with 19 tooth eno freewheel....something like that.
 

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I'm in New England as well (Western Mass). Depending on where you are and your general SS fitness, a 32x21 or a 32x22 would be a good starting point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
LOL CB2 It would have to be a pretty good secret...

You confirmed what I was leaning towards. My last hesitation is that it will be fully rigid, which is probably ok, as from what I've read, my mindset will have to change riding it. I will start off by simply changing out the middle ring in front for a Salsa 32, removing the granny but leave the big ring for now. Adding a SS conversion kit with a Salsa 22t. Removing derailleurs. Assuming that I like it enough, I might then look to modify some of the other parts such as the brakes (upgrade to V's) seat, cranks, and bars to something lighter and more modern.
 

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Jam Econo
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LOL CB2 It would have to be a pretty good secret...

You confirmed what I was leaning towards. My last hesitation is that it will be fully rigid, which is probably ok, as from what I've read, my mindset will have to change riding it. I will start off by simply changing out the middle ring in front for a Salsa 32, removing the granny but leave the big ring for now. Adding a SS conversion kit with a Salsa 22t. Removing derailleurs. Assuming that I like it enough, I might then look to modify some of the other parts such as the brakes (upgrade to V's) seat, cranks, and bars to something lighter and more modern.
It is a really good one...

Put a Mutanoraptor 2.4 on the front tubeless and you'll wonder what all the fuss about suspension forks is about (says the man who just put a 4" fork on the front of his bike).

My first singlespeed was a '96 Stumpjumper. It was the last year they made a steel Stumpjumper. I called it my poor man's Ritchey because it was made of Tange Prestige and welded in Japan (Tange made Ritchey's tubing and he had them welded in Japan but did the final brazing and finish himself).

 

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LOL CB2 It would have to be a pretty good secret...

You confirmed what I was leaning towards. My last hesitation is that it will be fully rigid, which is probably ok, as from what I've read, my mindset will have to change riding it. I will start off by simply changing out the middle ring in front for a Salsa 32, removing the granny but leave the big ring for now. Adding a SS conversion kit with a Salsa 22t. Removing derailleurs. Assuming that I like it enough, I might then look to modify some of the other parts such as the brakes (upgrade to V's) seat, cranks, and bars to something lighter and more modern.
Rigid is the way to go with a SS. All power goes to the rear wheel. Just have to play with tire pressures and use your upper body and arms a little differently than you're probably used to
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Frankenbike rides again

So I was able to acquire all the parts needed to convert the ole Ritchey into a SS. I went with 32x22 gearing, as a starting point. There was a lot more work than I thought to convert the frame, but I ran into some good luck here and there.

Here is the sorta final product:



I say sorta, because after not taking it for a ride, despite being all geared up (camelback tube clogged with the liner - but that is another story) I found an old wheelset in the garage so those are not in the pic.

My riding buddies always used to call this bike the frankenbike, since it originally had the Alsop Frankenstem. It now has parts from several bikes and eras, most of which I still had in the tub o parts.

Set Up:
Ritchey P23
XT hubs on Mavic 517's
Velociraptor front, and Smoke Classic rear
LX V Brakes
super long Cannondale CODA bar ends
Original seat, seatpost, and fork
Avid Brake Levers
Boss Cranks - Anyone know anything about these? The 32 tooth salsa chainring fit perfectly without needing shorter bolts, so I could run without the large ring or bash guard.
Nashbar SS conversion kit
Surly 22t cog
SRAM chain

One more pic of the bike


One of the drivetrain


Finally, the only thing that I don't like with the set up, which is the rear brake routing. The issue is the very small cable boss on the Ritchey, and when I asked the LBS, their thought was to run full housing zip tied to the frame. I would love to hear any solutions which are more elegant. Here is what I'm faced with - this is from the old cantilever brakes.


Still looking forward to the inaugural ride, which should be this week.
 

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Schipperkes are cool.
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks guys, I was sorta hoping my days of cantis were over. :) I've never been able to get them adjusted so they work nearly as well as a V...and I've not really worked with/on them since about 1995. HA
 

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Hey, nice bike. What do you want to know about those sweet BOSS cranks? They are BMX cranks, made in California in the mid-90's. A close friend of mine was employed there and did a bunch of welding for them. They may even be cranks he made. I have read though that near the end BOSS was having profile make them. Oscar would know the whole story.

Take it easy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hey, nice bike. What do you want to know about those sweet BOSS cranks? They are BMX cranks, made in California in the mid-90's. A close friend of mine was employed there and did a bunch of welding for them. They may even be cranks he made. I have read though that near the end BOSS was having profile make them. Oscar would know the whole story.

Take it easy!
Really, anything about em. Never seen them elsewhere. I got the bike in roughly 1993, and the cranks were on it then. At the time, I was in Tahoe, and bought it from a friend of a friend. Be interested to know more. Thanks.
 
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