Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello MTBR community!! I haven't posted in a forum since i was in high school, but I have a lot of questions that I think I need a community to help me out with :) I am on the East Coast of Canada so this is a winter project I thought would be fun and different.

Firstly, I was gifted a vintage Scott Peak bike, and I am thinking it is from 1991 but I am not too sure. I love it.
So far, I've cleaned the frame and rims up, stripped the old rubber and tubes and replaced the front tire and tube (thank you Radical Edge in Fredericton NB)... all my first time doing this! I learned that there is a thing called rim tape, I am missing some for the back tire. Any recommendations for rim tape appreciated, or i'll just go to my bike shop.

Here is a picture! Those are the old tires.

1911904


I'm having a lot of fun! Ok here are some questions:

1. The chain is very gunky and I couldn't get it clean even with a powerful degreaser. Should I buy a new one? Also I can't get it off without disconnecting the whole mechanism, anybody have a youtube resource?
2. I want a new saddle. It came with the original in rough shape, with a gel seat slapped over it (in photo). Recommendations for something comfortable (I'm a lady and this is my commuter bike)
3. Should I bother touching up the paint when I'm done?
4.The cassette on the back tire is dull, should i buy a new one?


THANK YOU!
 

·
since 4/10/2009
Joined
·
30,901 Posts
Any recommendations for rim tape appreciated, or i'll just go to my bike shop.
You don't need to get too deep into the weeds on rim tape, but I dislike the rubber band type rim strips. They fall apart really fast. On older bikes like that, the Velox cloth tape is a reliable classic. The only time I wouldn't use it would be if tires fit on the rims REALLY tight. In that case, I'd consider a thinner adhesive tape. Modern tubeless tapes would be good if the tires already fit tight. But if they fit loose (and I suspect they do), then the cloth Velox is better.

1. The chain is very gunky and I couldn't get it clean even with a powerful degreaser. Should I buy a new one? Also I can't get it off without disconnecting the whole mechanism, anybody have a youtube resource?
You'd likely have better results removing the chain completely, soaking it in a tub or bottle with degreaser, and using a brush to scrub it. 30yrs of grime won't be fun to remove. Removing the chain depends on what you've got. It's possible there's a sort of "quick link" on the chain, so look over the whole thing to see if there is one. If your chain has one, then removing that one link will do it. How depends again on what you've got.

If there's no quick link and all of the links look the same, then you'll have to push a pin out with a chain tool to separate the chain. To put it back on, you'd likely need a new pin from the shop (or a quick link).

I wouldn't worry about putting a new chain on unless the one you have is excessively worn, rusty, or damaged.

2. I want a new saddle. It came with the original in rough shape, with a gel seat slapped over it (in photo). Recommendations for something comfortable (I'm a lady and this is my commuter bike)
Saddles are intensely personal, for men or for women. So other people's recommendations likely won't mean squat. You have two options here. Buy saddles until you find one that works (some shops can help here by offering sit bone measuring to help roughly guide you, and/or by offering a sort of exchange/refund program to help offset the cost), or find a shop with a saddle demo program where you don't have to actually buy a saddle until you've tried one you like (there's usually a deposit that goes towards the purchase of a saddle, and maybe a small rental fee).

I've done both ways. By far, I prefer being able to "try before I buy" rather than to just buy random stuff until I start to figure out what aspects of a saddle I like and dislike.

3. Should I bother touching up the paint when I'm done?
For a commuter? Nah. I mean, you probably don't want it to rust on you, so covering up any bare metal with clear nail polish is a good idea, but you don't want a commuter bike to look all that pretty, anyway. It just becomes a magnet for theft. In some respects, the rougher-looking, the better.

4.The cassette on the back tire is dull, should i buy a new one?
Dullness doesn't really tell you anything about how worn a cassette is. Worn cassettes develop "shark fin" looking teeth that can be quite sharp when they're really worn. Before they get that bad, the scoop between teeth generally starts to look elongated as it wears. Like with the chain, I'd consider removing it and soaking it in degreaser, and giving it a really good scrub. I wouldn't replace it unless it's truly worn. Also, if you replace the cassette, you'd be well served to replace the chain if you aren't already. And definitely inspect the chainrings for wear along the way.

If it was me looking to clean this bike up to commute on, and for general riding, I'd disassemble it all the way down to the frame. That gives me the opportunity to clean and inspect every part individually. Given the bike's age, it also gives me the opportunity to put fresh grease in ALL the bearings that are accessible (headset, bearings, etc), replace ANYTHING that's worn or broken, replace anything that's not up to my comfort standards, and put grease on all fasteners when reassembling. Along the way, I'd replace: all rubber bits including tires, tubes, grips, brake pads; all other contact points like the saddle and pedals, and anything else that's likely to see notable wear/degradation like the cables and housing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
You don't need to get too deep into the weeds on rim tape, but I dislike the rubber band type rim strips. They fall apart really fast. On older bikes like that, the Velox cloth tape is a reliable classic. The only time I wouldn't use it would be if tires fit on the rims REALLY tight. In that case, I'd consider a thinner adhesive tape. Modern tubeless tapes would be good if the tires already fit tight. But if they fit loose (and I suspect they do), then the cloth Velox is better.



You'd likely have better results removing the chain completely, soaking it in a tub or bottle with degreaser, and using a brush to scrub it. 30yrs of grime won't be fun to remove. Removing the chain depends on what you've got. It's possible there's a sort of "quick link" on the chain, so look over the whole thing to see if there is one. If your chain has one, then removing that one link will do it. How depends again on what you've got.

If there's no quick link and all of the links look the same, then you'll have to push a pin out with a chain tool to separate the chain. To put it back on, you'd likely need a new pin from the shop (or a quick link).

I wouldn't worry about putting a new chain on unless the one you have is excessively worn, rusty, or damaged.



Saddles are intensely personal, for men or for women. So other people's recommendations likely won't mean squat. You have two options here. Buy saddles until you find one that works (some shops can help here by offering sit bone measuring to help roughly guide you, and/or by offering a sort of exchange/refund program to help offset the cost), or find a shop with a saddle demo program where you don't have to actually buy a saddle until you've tried one you like (there's usually a deposit that goes towards the purchase of a saddle, and maybe a small rental fee).

I've done both ways. By far, I prefer being able to "try before I buy" rather than to just buy random stuff until I start to figure out what aspects of a saddle I like and dislike.



For a commuter? Nah. I mean, you probably don't want it to rust on you, so covering up any bare metal with clear nail polish is a good idea, but you don't want a commuter bike to look all that pretty, anyway. It just becomes a magnet for theft. In some respects, the rougher-looking, the better.



Dullness doesn't really tell you anything about how worn a cassette is. Worn cassettes develop "shark fin" looking teeth that can be quite sharp when they're really worn. Before they get that bad, the scoop between teeth generally starts to look elongated as it wears. Like with the chain, I'd consider removing it and soaking it in degreaser, and giving it a really good scrub. I wouldn't replace it unless it's truly worn. Also, if you replace the cassette, you'd be well served to replace the chain if you aren't already. And definitely inspect the chainrings for wear along the way.

If it was me looking to clean this bike up to commute on, and for general riding, I'd disassemble it all the way down to the frame. That gives me the opportunity to clean and inspect every part individually. Given the bike's age, it also gives me the opportunity to put fresh grease in ALL the bearings that are accessible (headset, bearings, etc), replace ANYTHING that's worn or broken, replace anything that's not up to my comfort standards, and put grease on all fasteners when reassembling. Along the way, I'd replace: all rubber bits including tires, tubes, grips, brake pads; all other contact points like the saddle and pedals, and anything else that's likely to see notable wear/degradation like the cables and housing.

Thank you SO much for this detailed reply! This project is so fun but the more complicated fixes such as brakes and cables are very daunting :p... Although I believe the brake pads look fairly new! There are some rusty bolts that I was thinking of replacing. I'm not much of a hardware store person but I may have to become one.

I'm picking up a new chain today, I just would rather start fresh I think.

Do you have recommendations for the type of grease you would use for the bearings?
 

·
since 4/10/2009
Joined
·
30,901 Posts
Thank you SO much for this detailed reply! This project is so fun but the more complicated fixes such as brakes and cables are very daunting :p... Although I believe the brake pads look fairly new! There are some rusty bolts that I was thinking of replacing. I'm not much of a hardware store person but I may have to become one.

I'm picking up a new chain today, I just would rather start fresh I think.

Do you have recommendations for the type of grease you would use for the bearings?
If you take things slowly, step-by-step, it's not so bad. Most can be done with standard tools, but there's a few bike-specific tools you'll need if you want to do the whole project yourself. Tools to remove the cassette, a crank puller for your cranks, tool to remove the bottom bracket, probably as bare minimums aside from metric hex wrenches. For the headset, you can make do with a regular adjustable wrench, but really thin wrenches specifically for the nuts on it will make the job easier. Same with hub cones and lock nuts and also the pedals (the left pedal is reverse threaded).

As for the grease, nah, you don't need anything special. the vast majority of grease you need to use on the bike can be whatever you have or is cheap from the auto parts store. Auto parts stores have tons of waterproof bearing grease. The stuff for boat trailers is thick and meant to be submerged, and that stuff would be great for a commuter bike that's going to be exposed to the elements. There's nothing on this bike that would need a more specific grease.

If you do disassemble it down to the frame, you might consider putting an application of a product called "Frame Saver" (there are comparable competitors products, too) inside the frame tubes to help protect against rust. I've got 2 newer steel bikes and I've done the same with them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
If you take things slowly, step-by-step, it's not so bad. Most can be done with standard tools, but there's a few bike-specific tools you'll need if you want to do the whole project yourself. Tools to remove the cassette, a crank puller for your cranks, tool to remove the bottom bracket, probably as bare minimums aside from metric hex wrenches. For the headset, you can make do with a regular adjustable wrench, but really thin wrenches specifically for the nuts on it will make the job easier. Same with hub cones and lock nuts and also the pedals (the left pedal is reverse threaded).

As for the grease, nah, you don't need anything special. the vast majority of grease you need to use on the bike can be whatever you have or is cheap from the auto parts store. Auto parts stores have tons of waterproof bearing grease. The stuff for boat trailers is thick and meant to be submerged, and that stuff would be great for a commuter bike that's going to be exposed to the elements. There's nothing on this bike that would need a more specific grease.

If you do disassemble it down to the frame, you might consider putting an application of a product called "Frame Saver" (there are comparable competitors products, too) inside the frame tubes to help protect against rust. I've got 2 newer steel bikes and I've done the same with them.
Thanks for the info! I have about 3 months until the roads are bikeable, so I'll just pick away at it and head down to the bike shop if I need them to step in. Most of the tools and terms you mentioned I didn't recognize so I'll have to do some more research!
 

·
since 4/10/2009
Joined
·
30,901 Posts
Thanks for the info! I have about 3 months until the roads are bikeable, so I'll just pick away at it and head down to the bike shop if I need them to step in. Most of the tools and terms you mentioned I didn't recognize so I'll have to do some more research!
Taking your time, and doing it one task at a time when you wouldn't be riding, anyway, is a good way to approach it. It's how most wind up learning it. Doing an overhaul like this on an old bike is a great way to start that learning process.

It's easy to dive in too quickly and get overwhelmed by the little details.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
755 Posts
Congratulation on your Scott. Everything Harold told you to do is spot on. Your first concern is making sure your bearings are decent, greased, and adjusted. For a Canadian coastal bike with severe weather it is in remarkably good condition.

But the first thing I would do is check to make sure that your drivetrain (shifters, derailleurs) is Shimano. Guessing from the pic it appears that you have a Shimano Exage crank and Rapid Fire (push/push) shifters. The reason I'm asking is because in the late80's/early90's some mfg's spec'd Suntour components on some models and if they are Suntour, it adds a number of issues going forward.

There are a couple of easy checks you can do without tools just to get an idea of the condition of things.

Apply the front brakes and rock the bike forward. Put your fingers where the stem and headset meet and to see if there is any play. Also lift the front wheel vertical and rotate the handlebars to see if they turn smoothly or if you can feel a notch.

Push the crankarms toward the frame and feel if there is any play/wiggle.

Remove the wheels from the bike and turn the axles, or rotate the rims, and to see how smooth they are. Don't expect perfect, but if they shouldn't be really gritty/notchy. This doesn't mean a replacement, but at least new ball bearings, grease and adjustment.

More people should do this... take a credit card and place the edge across the brake section of the rims. Check for how much concave there is. If little to none, you are in great shape. If over .5mm, the rims may be worn out or getting close. A more precise way is to measure the actual rim thickness above the brake area to determine that actual amount of material you have left, but you need something like a dental gauge to measure a rim's thickness.

Good luck and have fun.

John
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top