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  1. #1
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    My winter project - building a SS from a modern road frame - pics inside

    I won a road bike frame in a photo contest, hosted by Pro-Lite. I received a 56cm Cuneo road frame and CF seatpost. Since I already have a CX bike (Tricross) and a road bike (Cervelo S1), I thought it would be fun to build a single speed out of it.

    The purpose of this bike is to zip around town, and go for bike rides with my 5 yr old son, without having to "dress up" or strap on SPD shoes. Something I can just jump on in my sandals or sneakers. My goal was to build it for under $500, as my wife has already been very very generous to tolerate my cycling addiction already this year.

    So to start, here is the frame I won:


    56cm, oversized seat tube - very light. According to Pro-Lite, the aluminum used is similar to scandium. Also has very cool, contoured and squared off stays. A very clean frame to start with.

    Next was a big order from Chain Reaction. To stay under budget, I scoured their site for deals, clearance items and discounts, also using a "customer appreciation" discount code that I got from a previous order. Managed to get all of these parts for under $500, achieving my budget goals - including the wheelset!! Speaking of wheels, I decided to go with a standard road wheelset/rear hub, along with a SS conversion kit (spaces and a single cog). That way, if I ever wanted to add a geared drivetrain in the future, I wouldn't have to buy another wheelset. The Specialized saddle was donated free from a friend
    The list included:
    - SRAM S100 46T crankset
    - Truative splinedrive BB
    - SRAM chain
    - Pro-Lite integrated headset, 110mm stem, and ergo bars
    - Crane Creek Brake levers
    - Tektro road brakes
    - Vitus carbon fork
    - Shimano r500 wheelset





    I built a mockup to take some measurements for steering tube length, bar/stem position, and brake lever placement. Here's what it looks like so far:


    I'm still waiting on the anti-seize for the BB, so I haven't done any drivetrain work yet. Also need to buy bar tape and cables/housings for the brakes. The only thing I will have the LBS do (because I don't trust myself yet) is to cut the steerer tube and press in the star nut.

    Just got 20cm of snow last night, so this is definitely a work in progress job. Won't be riding it till the spring, but I'm very anxious to try it out.

    Thanks for reading and stay tuned for the finished project.
    Cheers

  2. #2
    hello
    Reputation: roadfix's Avatar
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    Nice project! I assume you'll be installing a chain tensioner to take up chain slack, as I did not see it in your parts list?
    SurlySteamrollerLitespeedClassicBianchiPista
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    LitespeedFirenzeCinelliOlympic

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by roadfix
    Nice project! I assume you'll be installing a chain tensioner to take up chain slack, as I did not see it in your parts list?
    The parts list were highlights - there were other small parts that I didn't list, but are in the picture. The tensioner kit is there (upper right in the goodies picture) - I plan on seeing what the chain tension is like without it. I'll use the tensioner if I need it.

  4. #4
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    I would encourage you to take a look at the following weblinks and see if you can use a "magic" gear combination that would allow you to forgo a tensioner. Plug your chainstay length into the one of the first two links below and fiddle around with some different gear combinations to see if you can make it work. I have two single speed bikes that use the magic combination and it works great. If you can't use a magic gear combination, be sure to shorten your chain as much as you can, even to the point of using a half link. This way, your chain can't slip and the tensioner will just keep the chain from derailing.

    Have fun!

    http://eehouse.org/fixin/formfmu.php
    http://www.machinehead-software.co.u...engthcalc.html
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gears/

  5. #5
    Master Photographer
    Reputation: AFenvy's Avatar
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    Beautiful project!

  6. #6
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    Wow, that's a great looking bike for a budget build! If you have an extra $150 for it, consider the Forward Components eccentric bottom bracket for chain tensioning. I'm putting one on my MTB now; it's got pretty good reviews on MTBR.

  7. #7
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    Another update. Made a trip to the LBS to get my fork steerer cut and start nut pressed in. While waiting, I picked up some brake cables, jagwire housings, and axiom cork bar tape.

    When back home and built up the headset, wired the brakes, and wrapped the bars. I was a little nervous about the wrapping, but I think it turned out very well for a first shot. Only thing left is the drive train. Still waiting for some final tools for BB assembly and chain installation.








  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Shaping up nicely.
    Good luck with it.

  9. #9
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    That looks bad ass, Hurry up, I want to see the final pics
    Don`t let technology stand in the way of progress, ride a 1 gear bike.

  10. #10
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    Well, its finally done.



    Sorry for the crap picture, just a quick snapshot.

    I ended up using the chain tensioner kit. I was having problems getting the proper chain tension while keeping the rear axle seated in the dropout. As I got towards good tension on the chain, the axle would start lifting out of the dropout. I don't think the tensioner looks all that bad - although I'm sure the diehard SS/FG enthusiasts will disagree.

    Thanks to Pro-Lite for the frame. It looks great, and to Keiran at Pro-Lite for publishing my story on their website.
    Last edited by simonaway427; 12-09-2010 at 03:11 AM.

  11. #11
    Old and Fixed, Moderator
    Reputation: Dave Hickey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by simonaway427
    Well, its finally done.


    Sorry for the crap picture, just a quick snapshot.

    I ended up using the chain tensioner kit. I was having problems getting the proper chain tension while keeping the rear axle seated in the dropout. As I got towards good tension on the chain, the axle would start lifting out of the dropout. I don't think the tensioner looks all that bad - although I'm sure the diehard SS/FG enthusiasts will disagree.

    Thanks to Pro-Lite for the frame. It looks great, and to Keiran at Pro-Lite for publishing my store on their website.

    Beautiful job...a nice clean build
    Dave Hickey/ Fort Worth

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

  12. #12
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    Reputation: heedongyee's Avatar
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    Looks fast! How's it working for your application?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by heedongyee
    Looks fast! How's it working for your application?
    Well, its -20C out today with about 1 foot of snow....I'll let you know in April how it works out

  14. #14
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    68* is nice. Oops did not see the minus in front of the 20 sorry., LOL. Bike looks great, nice job. Post a ride update once you thaw out
    Don`t let technology stand in the way of progress, ride a 1 gear bike.

  15. #15
    the fist
    Reputation: JohnHenry's Avatar
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    real nice.
    FlexiSexual

  16. #16
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    I thought I'd post some final pics - using the photographic style that won me the frame in the first place.
















  17. #17
    강남 스타일
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    Outstanding shots.

  18. #18
    Master Photographer
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    That is the best looking low budget bike I have probably ever seen. Very impressive.

  19. #19
    Frog Whisperer
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    you got a final weight on it?....just curious
    Of course I'm sure...that doesn't mean I'm right......

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Touch0Gray
    you got a final weight on it?....just curious
    18 lbs according to my cheapo Ebay luggage scale.

    Not the lightest I know, but budget was the key factor, not weight. The bulk of the weight comes from -

    1) The forks - they were pretty hefty.
    2) Wheels - what do you expect for $120 for the pair?
    3) Pedals - platform pedals were like a pair of bricks.

    I've ordered a 1/2 link to see if I can reduce the signature, or remove completely, the STS tensioner. We'll see how that works.

  21. #21
    Carbon Fiber = Explode!
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    Nice bike for the price.

    Once I get home I'll take pictures of the Norco I built up. Cost me just under 400 for a budget build. Then again, I don't think anyone has said anything bad about anyone's bikes EVER...

    Wait...

    it's Xmas time again...

    '09 Voodoo Wazoo
    '08 Pedal Force RS2
    '06 Raleigh Cadent 5.0
    '01 Trek 4300 MTB
    '93 Norco Nitro MTB Touring
    '88 Schwinn Prelude Fixie
    1 hour of running = 1 hour of wasted time when you could have been riding. - Alaska Mike

  22. #22
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    That is a great looking bike - even with the chain tensioner. Hopefully, a half-link will work. I've seen a couple of fixie conversions of road frames with vertical drops made to work with that.

    And my "budget build" which I intended to sell to make a few bucks wound up being a bike I will not part with!
    Anyone who believes there are no stupid questions never worked in a bike shop.

  23. #23
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    beautiful bike simonaway427

    i almost hate to mention this considering your frame is so new & purty...

    did you try the old mountain biker trick - filing your drop-outs?

    i like yours too CleavesF, very festive

  24. #24
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by markaitch
    beautiful bike simonaway427

    i almost hate to mention this considering your frame is so new & purty...

    did you try the old mountain biker trick - filing your drop-outs?

    i like yours too CleavesF, very festive
    I didn't want to hack the frame at all, in case in the future I wanted to convert it back to a geared road bike.

  25. #25
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    Final little touch - added a half link to tighten up the chain a bit. Ended up still needing the tensioner, but was able to use the "push up" method which is preferable.


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