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  1. #1
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    Convert a headset - threaded to threadless?

    How easy/hard is it to convert a threaded/quill fork/headset to a threadless stylefork/headset? What new parts will I need (other than the fork and stem)?Before anyone asks, I have no idea what the headset bearing size, but I think all the older threaded headsets were the same size, right?

    B - I hear the new threadless system is lighter - Assuming the old fork & stem is a cro/moly, and the new fork is Carbon w/ alloy stem, roughly how much weight should I save?

    Thanks-
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti.

  2. #2
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    It will usually cost over $200 to make the change and not worth it in my opinion..To save any significant weight, even more to get a light weight fork...

    You need a new fork, stem, headest, and spacers...

    If your frame is old steel, it is most likey 1"...So you'd need a 1" fork, stem, headset and spacers
    Dave Hickey/ Fort Worth

    My 3Rensho Blog: http://vintage3rensholove.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
    ARP
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    You herd buffalo

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry-rigged
    How easy/hard is it to convert a threaded/quill fork/headset to a threadless stylefork/headset? What new parts will I need (other than the fork and stem)?Before anyone asks, I have no idea what the headset bearing size, but I think all the older threaded headsets were the same size, right?

    B - I hear the new threadless system is lighter - Assuming the old fork & stem is a cro/moly, and the new fork is Carbon w/ alloy stem, roughly how much weight should I save?

    Thanks-
    The headtube on your threaded frame is 1" so you need to convert with a 1" threadless headset. Although still available, carbon forks can be found with a 1" steer tube, you will need a spacer kit to determine the correct stack height for you and then buy a stem that is the correct length. Weight savings? ?1/2 lb? I'm really guessing. Oh almost forgot, you might need new handlebars too, to fit the new stem, you need to look into that also.

    The biggest difference you will notice when switching from steel to a CF fork (providing you did not change the fork rake, which changes the geometry a bit) is shock absorbsion, minor pavement irregularities will not be transmitted to you thru the bars to your hands. they get sucked up by the fork.

    Ultimately what you lose during the conversion is the ability to change your bar height with an allen wrench and a little bit of weight. If you want to change just your stem from old to current type, there is a quill stem adaptor. It replaces the old stem only and clamps just like a quill stem with the wedge bolt, but you can put spacers on it to look like a modern stem and then you clamp on a modern stem to it.

  4. #4
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    The biggest difference you will notice when switching from steel to a CF fork (providing you did not change the fork rake, which changes the geometry a bit) is shock absorbsion, minor pavement irregularities will not be transmitted to you thru the bars to your hands. they get sucked up by the fork.
    Bingo - this is what I am really after. saving weight is just cream.

    What I've got is a almost 20 year old bike that I am thinking of re-building. currently, Cromoly frame and fork, aluminum bars, heavy gel seat, and shimano 100's. Rides good, but I want newer shifters, 10 speeds, compact cranks, and if I can update some other stuff and get a better ride and lighter weight, that would be nice too.

    Option B is to buy a new bike, but I am not sure if I really want to do that.
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti.

  5. #5
    ARP
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    You are headed down a very expensive road

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry-rigged
    Bingo - this is what I am really after. saving weight is just cream.

    What I've got is a almost 20 year old bike that I am thinking of re-building. currently, Cromoly frame and fork, aluminum bars, heavy gel seat, and shimano 100's. Rides good, but I want newer shifters, 10 speeds, compact cranks, and if I can update some other stuff and get a better ride and lighter weight, that would be nice too.

    Option B is to buy a new bike, but I am not sure if I really want to do that.
    How many speed is it now? If I read you correctly, you are planning on buying a new drive train completely including wheels. And when you say 10 speed I assume you mean 10 cogs on the cassette combined with a 2 ring compact crank. If you try and do these upgrades individually, you will spend as much money or darn close to it than you would for a new bike. If fact it might be cheaper to buy a bike from bikesdirect.com and transfer over components and try and sell off the frame. Your current wheelset will not support a 10 speed cassette, so new wheels......probably nothing wrong with current bars......saddles are almost always replaced to something you like better......no new seat post unless it is a boat anchor type clamp system......brakeset, dual pivot anything with koolstop pads....new tires........F&R derailleur 10spd cassette and 10spdchain, ....$$$$$$$ it can be a money pit where at the end of the day you have a bike with a new drivetrain that might not ride as nice as a say a Schwinn fastback from Performance. Price it out and see what I mean.

    I remarked last year in a post after a visit to a Performance store that at that time I could not believe how much bike you could get for so little money meaning $900 to $1200. That bike in that range is better than what the pros were riding in the TdF just a few short years ago.

    I could see going your route if your frame was a really nice or classic frame as I have done that on my ti bike. I speced out all the parts and bought them indivdually and tried to buy alot of them from the same vendor at the same time to save on shipping. I think I did frame/fork/hs/bar/post from the LBS, then rd/shifters/brakeset from another unsure on compact crank and fd, wheelset from another. I would not do it if the frame fits nice, that can be duplicated when buying a new bike.
    Last edited by ARP; 08-03-2009 at 10:45 AM.

  6. #6
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    I hear what you are saying, and if I wanted 105 or ultegra I would agree... but I want rival, and I can't find a rival bike for under $2500. my "first pass" pricing of a re-build puts me in the 700-1100 range (depending on how many red/force parts I pick), if I keep my fork, headset and bars.

    Edit - my current gears are a 7 speed, 13-23 in back, with a 53x42 up front, with down tube shifters.
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti.

  7. #7
    ARP
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    Best bet is a new bike

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry-rigged
    I hear what you are saying, and if I wanted 105 or ultegra I would agree... but I want rival, and I can't find a rival bike for under $2500. my "first pass" pricing of a re-build puts me in the 700-1100 range (depending on how many red/force parts I pick), if I keep my fork, headset and bars.

    Edit - my current gears are a 7 speed, 13-23 in back, with a 53x42 up front, with down tube shifters.
    You're puttin' diamonds on a hog. You could do the fork/hs/stem/bars, new Sora 7 speed shifters and a compact crank and bb and be done with it. Nothing else to swap out except a nice fitting saddle. I would put the new red parts on a worthy frame. The give away on your current frame is that it has 100 parts to begin with, meaning it is not that great of a frame.

  8. #8
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    Do what you like, really. I've done something similar. I bought an older cannondale and have slowly been updating parts. I love the frame and love that it is an old classis cannondale aluminum frame. I needed a compact double anyway, so I found a good deal on a ritchey WCS compact crank, then built my own lighter wheelset, bought ultegra drivetrain and bars, seatpost, stem, all slowly over time. I now have a bike that I really love and love to ride.


    Is your bike currently 7 speed in the rear? Is it a steel frame or aluminum? If it is aluminum you'll have a hard time putting a 10 speed cassette in the frame, plus you'll need new wheels.

    If it's steel, you can reset the rear spacing, you'll still need a new rear wheel.
    bici italia

  9. #9
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    What frame you considering hanging these parts on?

  10. #10
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    (long post warning)

    [quote]You're puttin' diamonds on a hog.[\quote]
    If I was going full red, sure. But isn't Rival supposed to be "equivilent" to 105, or maybe a 105/ultagra mix? The only red part I am looking at is the crank - save a lot of weight, for only about a hundred buck extra.

    The bike in question is a Dimondback "Expert", '91 year. It has maybe 10k-15k miles on it. Origonally sold in 3 flavors - "Expert" (mine) - a 100 bike, the "Masters", a 105 bike, and "Elite" with Ultegra.

    The long story as to how my thought process got me where I am -

    I have been off the bike for several years. Just getting back on the bike, and have the "new bike bug", only I don't really have issues with my bike, and I don't really lust after a carbon bike - the lust is more for the new shifters and more gears. I like what I have heard and read about SRAM and Rivel, so I start looking at Rivel bikes - don't find many, and they are all Carbon and will be touching $3000 after TT&L. I don't have a problem with the idea of spending that much on a good bike, but I don't have it and have started to save, ETA, christmas, or my birthday in March, and I am fine with the wait - it will give me time to make sure I keep riding enough to justify the bike.

    But what to do with my old bike? I can't really sell it for more than garage sale money, and I have enjoyed it & cared for it too much to just toss it. So I start thinking I will turn it into a Cross bike, with those skinny knoby tires and gears that will climb a wall. Replacing drive train and getting a "cheap tough" new rear wheel will be less than a grand. BUT-

    but then I think - I am 90% of the way to having the road bike I want, at 1/3 the price. If I add a threadless stem (so I can get a reversable riser stem for a more upright trail riding position) and an extra set of "cheap tough" wheels, I can have both bikes, for less than the price of a new plastic bike - it'll just take me 1/2 an hour to swap the wheels and flip the stem.

    So that is my long, boring story. I may still get the new bike, but I doubt I will toss or sell my DB. Is my thinking really screwed up? should I just get a Trek Madone like 90% of the bikers out there? or should I rehab my baby and keep enjoying her?
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti.

  11. #11
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    lol I over-did my own Diamondback, but not to that extent.
    Personally, I'd go for carbon handlebars instead of fork. You feel the difference a lot better. It's not as much of a hassle, can cost less if you hunt well enough. Explode? I've put my carbon riser through a bit of hell and nothing ever happened.

    So what to do? I recommend keeping the DB as a commuter/beater. Get another bike to be serious on investment-wise. I understand you're in a position where the bike feels perfect, but you have to make a cieling/limit to when too much, is too much. What's gonna happen when you got the whole new gruppo on, and then the frame fails? Sure, you can buy a new frame...but it'd cost you more than an all-around new and better bike.

  12. #12
    ARP
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    Why limit yourself to CF?

    [QUOTE=Jerry-rigged](long post warning)

    You're puttin' diamonds on a hog.[\quote]
    If I was going full red, sure. But isn't Rival supposed to be "equivilent" to 105, or maybe a 105/ultagra mix? The only red part I am looking at is the crank - save a lot of weight, for only about a hundred buck extra.

    The bike in question is a Dimondback "Expert", '91 year. It has maybe 10k-15k miles on it. Origonally sold in 3 flavors - "Expert" (mine) - a 100 bike, the "Masters", a 105 bike, and "Elite" with Ultegra.

    The long story as to how my thought process got me where I am -

    I have been off the bike for several years. Just getting back on the bike, and have the "new bike bug", only I don't really have issues with my bike, and I don't really lust after a carbon bike - the lust is more for the new shifters and more gears. I like what I have heard and read about SRAM and Rivel, so I start looking at Rivel bikes - don't find many, and they are all Carbon and will be touching $3000 after TT&L. I don't have a problem with the idea of spending that much on a good bike, but I don't have it and have started to save, ETA, christmas, or my birthday in March, and I am fine with the wait - it will give me time to make sure I keep riding enough to justify the bike.

    But what to do with my old bike? I can't really sell it for more than garage sale money, and I have enjoyed it & cared for it too much to just toss it. So I start thinking I will turn it into a Cross bike, with those skinny knoby tires and gears that will climb a wall. Replacing drive train and getting a "cheap tough" new rear wheel will be less than a grand. BUT-

    but then I think - I am 90% of the way to having the road bike I want, at 1/3 the price. If I add a threadless stem (so I can get a reversable riser stem for a more upright trail riding position) and an extra set of "cheap tough" wheels, I can have both bikes, for less than the price of a new plastic bike - it'll just take me 1/2 an hour to swap the wheels and flip the stem.

    So that is my long, boring story. I may still get the new bike, but I doubt I will toss or sell my DB. Is my thinking really screwed up? should I just get a Trek Madone like 90% of the bikers out there? or should I rehab my baby and keep enjoying her?
    Have you looked at GVHbikes.com? The Gary V. Titanio looks like a great ride and he carries Sram and you can pretty much spec what you want, ala cart.

  13. #13
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    OK, so I looked at GVH. they do have some good deals there, and a lot of budget frames, but the budget frames were all names I didn't know.

    So, ARP, what would you do? rehab the budget bike you know you like? or spend 2x on a mail-order budget bike you can't test ride, can't get geometry on, and don't know if you will like? If I could check out these bike at a bike shop, I might go for one, but otherwise....

    Thanks for your help, though.

    jerry
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti.

  14. #14
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    You could always go with a 1" carbon fork with threaded steer tube. Just measure your steer tube length, and head over to Nashbar and order. That's what I did recently, and so far, so good. As a bonus the fork matched the rake of my original (43mm) and I can always put the old fork back on in a few minutes. You get a small weight savings and vibration damping for just a bit of cash. Don't forget to swap out the crown race.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry-rigged
    but I want rival, and I can't find a rival bike for under $2500.
    www.neuvationcycling.com - $1250 and you can get it with a red crank if you ask nicely.

  16. #16
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    New Cannondale CAAD9-4 is Rival and $1799 list also.

    Asad

  17. #17
    ARP
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    I mention GVH because

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry-rigged
    OK, so I looked at GVH. they do have some good deals there, and a lot of budget frames, but the budget frames were all names I didn't know.

    So, ARP, what would you do? rehab the budget bike you know you like? or spend 2x on a mail-order budget bike you can't test ride, can't get geometry on, and don't know if you will like? If I could check out these bike at a bike shop, I might go for one, but otherwise....

    Thanks for your help, though.

    jerry
    he IS someone I would buy a bike from unridden. He sells top notch stuff. The biz was started and run by Gary Hobbs who got sick and eventually died. The guy running it now does so with the same biz model and has a solid reputation. Lots of old timers here know of GVH. This ain't bikesdirect. Try finding a LBS where you can buy a frame and component parts ala cart or total like he offers. As far as test riding, the last 2 bikes I have bought were un tested. I knew they would fit, i know my off the rack size and made minor fit adjustments. Use your current frame as the yardstick to determine what will fit you TT length. GVH lists TT length, alot of riders go by that size alone. I also take a look at the seat tube angle, as long as it is <74* I'm fine.

    Your old bike I would refurb like so: I would try fatter tires, 25s or 28s @95psi to take the sting out of the road. I would make sure the bars are wide enough to open up your chest, makes it a little more comfortable Nitto has some nice bars. These 2 things might solve the fork/hs/stem problem. I would find a saddle that I like alot and stick with it for life. Drivetrain I would try to find RSX 7 speed shifters or Sora 7 speed shifters. Sora has a thumb shifter like Campy, RSX is older and harder to find but shifts in a traditional Shimano manner. Used compact crank and bb, it has the 110mm bolt pattern and you can put alot of different rings on it to meet your needs. If you really wanted to get wild and crazy, you could cut out your old rims from your hubs and get new rims laced to the old hubs like Velocity deep V or Mavic Open pros. These things will make your current ride more user friendly.

    Here is a pic of a bike I re-habed from a sidewalk heap 6 speed to it's current state. It has DA 10 barend shifters/Ultegra Mavic Open pro wheelset and Ultegra drivetrain parts I had lying around from other bikes/Nitto bars and a Brooks Pro saddle I bought before they went off the charts price wise. Forgot to mention the bike is a 1980 Schwinn 11.8, solid chrome. I added the fenders too.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Convert a headset - threaded to threadless?-decals-009-small-.jpg  

  18. #18
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    Go to a bike shop and ride some new bikes. Even the cheaper ones will be significantly lighter, and the components will work a lot better. Try the ride out and see if you like it. I have rebuilt old steel frames and it can get costly if you don't have parts laying around. If you're like me and like to build stuff, you'll have fun if you build it yourself, just don't expect that you will save any money.

  19. #19
    ARP
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    Jerry check your PM box

    Sent something to you that might be of interest.

  20. #20
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    My LBS told me the exact same. Even budget bikes will out perform the older steel bikes and often at a price point less than an upgrade to your current frame. This is unless you have an old diamond of a frame.

    I say do what you want. It doesn't have to be new or nothing. But do understand, it won't be the cheapest route to a good ride.

  21. #21
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    Here's another Rival Bike

    Competitive Cyclist has the BMC Streetfire on sale for $1499. The other non SRAM parts are Mavic Aksium wheels, Selle saddle, Michelin tires, FSA. It looks awesome too! M and L are the only sizes available. That would cover riders from about 5'9 to 6'1. The ride is not as harsh as aluminum's reputation.
    http://www.competitivecyclist.com/ro...bike-5977.html

    A Rival group would run about $900. Add wheels, tires, bar, stem, saddle, post, and bartape and you would be darn close to the $1499. The frame is basically no risk at that price.

    Also see the Look 566 from wrenchscience. $2699 Nice full carbon bike.
    http://www.wrenchscience.com/Look/56...es/Frames.html

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