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Question about brakes
#21
RetFor

Please understand that many of us here are into bicycles for a hobby, which is not economically justifiable. If your bike is strictly a transportation tool that needs to make sense economically; you have to do a hard business analysis and acquire/use expert knowledge to do the analysis. You must not get emotionally attached, and have to cut your loses whenever it makes economic sense to do.

I can make almost any bike into a nice ride, but none of my projects make economic sense. For example, I just guided a young teen through building a fixie/single speed from a late '70's hi-ten steel frame that we got for $5- There is almost $400- in parts in the project (and a lot of free labor) - twice what a similarly functional new bike would have cost; or four times what a similarly function used bike would have run. The value for me is not monetary, but is teaching a young person that he can make things that he is proud of and enjoys both the effort and the end result.+

cny has given you the hard facts.
Nigel
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#22
Thank you Nigel - sometimes people do not appreciate that no matter how hard the facts I am merely being conscientious by presenting them. The person still has complete freedom to make their own decision, I just try to make sure it's a fully informed one. I've found that if one couches the message too much it is sometimes overlooked. On the other hand I know I come across a bit too strong at time - a hazard of trying to navigate the line between compassion and confronting the truth.
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#23
(02-23-2014, 03:55 PM)nfmisso Wrote:  RetFor

Please understand that many of us here are into bicycles for a hobby, which is not economically justifiable. If your bike is strictly a transportation tool that needs to make sense economically; you have to do a hard business analysis and acquire/use expert knowledge to do the analysis. You must not get emotionally attached, and have to cut your loses whenever it makes economic sense to do.

I can make almost any bike into a nice ride, but none of my projects make economic sense. For example, I just guided a young teen through building a fixie/single speed from a late '70's hi-ten steel frame that we got for $5- There is almost $400- in parts in the project (and a lot of free labor) - twice what a similarly functional new bike would have cost; or four times what a similarly function used bike would have run. The value for me is not monetary, but is teaching a young person that he can make things that he is proud of and enjoys both the effort and the end result.+

cny has given you the hard facts.
(02-23-2014, 04:34 PM)cny-man Wrote:  Thank you Nigel - sometimes people do not appreciate that no matter how hard the facts I am merely being conscientious by presenting them. The person still has complete freedom to make their own decision, I just try to make sure it's a fully informed one. I've found that if one couches the message too much it is sometimes overlooked. On the other hand I know I come across a bit too strong at time - a hazard of trying to navigate the line between compassion and confronting the truth.

oh, absolutely. im definitely not one to want things sugar-coated or anything. i definitely appreciate all advice, thats why im here. i dont trust the shops around here - theyre the opposite end of the spectrum, businesses who will say/do anything to make money, and may or may not know what theyre doing. (like the housings, which were done by someone around here.) im here to get an idea of what is and isnt feasible and or necessary, to decide whether to do things myself; take it in somewhere, knowing what to expect so they dont take advantage; or decide to just scrap it altogether. as for cost, i would say im a pretty handy person, and i do enjoy fixing things, but in the end, it IS mainly a transportation bike and i dont want to have to spend more than i need to on it.

(02-23-2014, 12:50 PM)cny-man Wrote:  1. In a front-end collision the top tube and down tube are bent/stretched, breaking the paint, and then later rust at that point, evident in the side view pic of your bike.

2. Can't assume it would be easy for you, as you found changing brake pads challenging.

3. I assume you've heard of the saying about "throwing good money after bad?" The shift cables, lock and saddle can be used on any other bike.

4. I have no way of knowing what you have for the "gear system," but there's a good chance your chain and some of the rear cogs are worn, and you can't do that work without specialized tools and more expense. You need to have the entire bike evaluated so you know what other problems remain.

5. The frame will not break, but frame/fork could be bent sideways as well affecting handling. Certainly your ability to resell the bike will be greatly affected.

6. You actually could just replace the bars with upright and use mountain levers, but would need to get compatible bars and handlebar grips. Again - need to know if other problems exist before putting in more money.

7. I explained that above - look at the way the front housing loops way up and the back housing is forced to leave the lever at an angle. When installing new cable/housing you would need to make sure there's a smooth bend.

I strongly suggest you find a bike shop where you can get an evaluation of what the bike needs, or better yet if available find a bike co-op where you can get advice and assistance - or lean on a knowledgeable friend if available. Nothing is better than in-person help.

ever come down to brooklyn...? Tongue

1. ah, i see. impressive that you could tell that from a less-than-ideal-quality pic.

2. i wouldnt say i found it challenging, rather i was unprepared. i thought i could just slip them in and out, but wasnt able to, and didnt have time at the time to look up how to do it properly. ive done other work on the bike, including changing flat tires, changing a gear cable and changing the rear axle. im just wary of touching the brake system due to how vital it is. at least it works a bit now, were i to mess it up so it didnt work at all, that would be pretty bad. but thinking about it, i suppose i could do one brake to try first and see how that goes. especially if i do the rear one first, which doesnt work as well as the front one.

3. true, although the wheels are also pretty new. as well as some other parts i havent put on yet, see next point.

4. i have a new chain and front derailleur, i just havent put them on yet. i believe the rear cogs need replacing, as it skips sometimes on the gear i usually ride on, so i was waiting to replace them all together. ( i have a chain breaker, although im not sure about any specialized tools i might need for the cogs.)

6. i do like the drop bars, as they have a narrower profile than typical mountain or hybrid bars, which makes it easier to squeeze between cars. if mountain brakes wont fit because of the smaller diameter, and i cant use the attachment from road brakes for the mountain brakes to compensate for that, if i could put just cross levers on without the aeros that would be ideal, i think.

7. oh, ok. im still not familiar with all the terminology yet, so i wasnt sure if you were referring to the cable housing or something else. now i see what you mean. i think part of the reason for that sharp angle may be from flipping the bike to work on it and resting it on that point by mistake.

8. i think my main concerns about buying a new bike are this. ive already sunk quite a bit of money into this one, although i realize that that doesnt necessarily mean its worthwhile to sink in more. BUT unless i buy a brand new bike, theres no guarantee that everything is going to be in good working order on another bike, either. at least with this one, were i to replace the gear parts that i intend to and the brake system, about the only thing left that hasnt been replaced other than the frame/handlebars would be the rear derailleur, which seems to be still in pretty good working order. i would hope that with just about everything replaced within the past year or two, essentially turning it into a new(ish) bike, i shoudnt have to do any more major work on it for a few years at least.

an additional concern with buying a new bike is how likely it is to be stolen, since as i mentioned i live in brooklyn. when i first came to brooklyn i had a nice $300 hybrid trek bike that i had purchsed new. (i think. unless maybe it was a good condition used bike from a trek dealer. either way, it was in obviously good condition.) while i was careful to always leave it indoors overnight, one time i got stuck away somewhere overnight and wasnt able to bring it in. and it got stolen. with this bike, not only do i always leave it outside, ive even forgotten to lock it up overnight, and its never been stolen. so thats an issue as well. id hate to buy a new nicer looking bike just to have it stolen.


thanks again for the help.
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#24
You have presented some good reasons for staying with the current bike. I can assure you that you will need a new freewheel to go with the chain if it's skipping on the old one. Need a freewheel removal tool and to use the correct procedure to replace it. The rear derailleur is not the only thing left - you're forgetting bottom bracket, headset and hub bearing, which on a bike that age may become a problem. Cross levers are meant to be fed from near the handlebars, thus the need for aero levers. As for narrow bars, you're not limited to drop bars, just need to take a hacksaw to straight bars such as these: http://smartbikeparts.com/search_details.php?itm=SBP11112&gclid=CK2sxKj447wCFedAMgodzFYADQ

I don't get down to Brooklyn, but you have not responded to my suggestion of checking out a bike co-op. All you have to do is Google "Brooklyn bike co-op."
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#25
(02-24-2014, 04:37 AM)cny-man Wrote:  You have presented some good reasons for staying with the current bike. I can assure you that you will need a new freewheel to go with the chain if it's skipping on the old one. Need a freewheel removal tool and to use the correct procedure to replace it. The rear derailleur is not the only thing left - you're forgetting bottom bracket, headset and hub bearing, which on a bike that age may become a problem. Cross levers are meant to be fed from near the handlebars, thus the need for aero levers. As for narrow bars, you're not limited to drop bars, just need to take a hacksaw to straight bars such as these: http://smartbikeparts.com/search_details.php?itm=SBP11112&gclid=CK2sxKj447wCFedAMgodzFYADQ

I don't get down to Brooklyn, but you have not responded to my suggestion of checking out a bike co-op. All you have to do is Google "Brooklyn bike co-op."

thanks for the reply.

come to think of it, i think i actually did look into some kind of bike co-op at one point, but they charged a monthly fee to join or something. it may have been something i stumbled across, though, not that i was actively seeking out something like that. i took another look, now, though, and found one that doesnt charge just to come use the tools and get advice, so maybe ill look into that if the hours fit my schedule.

ill need the parts first, though. can you recommend what id need on amazon? im not sure how to tell what will and wont fit, i wouldnt have know about the sizing of the handlebars etc. i have cables, chain, grease, and front derailleur already, so i think what id need is levers, freewheel and freewheel removal tool. is there anything else id need? id prefer stuff that is decent enough not to break after a month but still relatively inexpensive. i definitely dont want to spring for top-of-the-line parts.

also, not to beat a dead horse, but if cross levers are meant to be fed from the wrong way, creating the need for aero levers with them, would it be possible to just switch them (ie put the one intended for the left on the right and vice versa) so that they feed the right way without aero levers? (i just did a bit of research to see if i could figure out why they couldnt be used standalone, and it seems they only push on the housing, they dont actually grab the cable. is that part of the reason also or can it be made to grab the cable also? i did see this on sheldon browns site, although im not sure exactly what he means by it, whether you can use them totally without the aero levers or not - "These can also be used as primary levers without the normal drop bar levers.")

thanks again.
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#26
I don't know how you value your time, but a quick visit to the bike co-op seems a much better use of it than hours spent on the Internet. The bike co-op folks should be able to help you make sure you know and understand your options as well as get the right parts. That's better than me pointing you to exactly what to order, which won't teach you anything for the future. I can't imagine a monthly fee (or a donation - they have to survive somehow) could be as bad as ordering the wrong part or spending much more time trying to figure out how to get everything to work together properly.

In-person help is always best. The "convenience" of the Internet is overrated.
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#27
p.s. If you have the luxury of more than one option for help check both out and then choose the one that best meets your needs rather than the one that appears to be less expensive. Things that are free sometimes are worth exactly what you pay for them.
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#28
(02-26-2014, 12:17 PM)cny-man Wrote:  I don't know how you value your time, but a quick visit to the bike co-op seems a much better use of it than hours spent on the Internet. The bike co-op folks should be able to help you make sure you know and understand your options as well as get the right parts. That's better than me pointing you to exactly what to order, which won't teach you anything for the future. I can't imagine a monthly fee (or a donation - they have to survive somehow) could be as bad as ordering the wrong part or spending much more time trying to figure out how to get everything to work together properly.

In-person help is always best. The "convenience" of the Internet is overrated.

i dont doubt that in-person help is far superior, but i have a busy schedule and its difficult for me to get out to do things. so it would be much easier to avoid going to the coop twice - once just to figure out what i need and once to do the work. i may not even go at all. i want to first get a ballpark idea of how much itd cost to do it myself, and then im going to take it over to a shop here and see how much theyd charge to do it. then ill decide which way to go.
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#29
Your choice, but it takes more time than you might imagine to determine what parts you need, select from all the options available, order, and then perhaps find out you got the wrong part. Bike co-ops often have perfectly useable recycled parts that could save you a good deal of money. As for two trips, they may be able to give you enough guidance to both get the right parts and install them on the first trip.
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#30
in the end i took it to the shop and had him work on it. he reworked the existing brake system to get it working again and put on a new freewheel. was $70 total. im sure thats more than doing it myself, but i just dont have the time right now and i decided it needed to be done since i slammed my knee into the edge of someones car door friday when they opened it in front of me and i couldnt avoid it or stop in time. doesnt seem like any permanent knee damage, but man it hurt for a couple days.

anyway, it was riding great - until i replaced the chain with the new one i had bought and never put on. i was waiting til i got a new freewheel so that the old freewheel wouldnt damage the new chain, but after putting on the new chain it started slipping again. why might that be? is it possible the new chain is too long? i wouldnt think the small difference would do that, but the new chain IS a little longer than the old one by 3 or 4 links. i held them up to each other to see the stretch on the old one, which i did see, but i also noticed that the new one is a little longer. will that cause skipping? should i trim it down to the same number of links? the other possible cause i thought of is while the new chain seems to be coated with something, its still a bit stiffer than the old one. does that just need to be broken in? oiled? is the coating itself the cause, does that need to be washed off then the joints oiled? is there some other possible cause im missing?

thanks.
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#31
(03-12-2014, 08:06 PM)RetFor Wrote:  ... it was riding great - until i replaced the chain with the new one i had bought and never put on. i was waiting til i got a new freewheel so that the old freewheel wouldnt damage the new chain, but after putting on the new chain it started slipping again. why might that be? is it possible the new chain is too long? i wouldnt think the small difference would do that, but the new chain IS a little longer than the old one by 3 or 4 links. i held them up to each other to see the stretch on the old one, which i did see, but i also noticed that the new one is a little longer. will that cause skipping? should i trim it down to the same number of links? the other possible cause i thought of is while the new chain seems to be coated with something, its still a bit stiffer than the old one. does that just need to be broken in? oiled? is the coating itself the cause, does that need to be washed off then the joints oiled? is there some other possible cause im missing?

thanks.
DO NOT remove the factory lube - it's as good or better than anything you would put on. Too long a chain would only cause problems in the smaller combos (small front chainwheel, smaller rear cogs.) You also do not size a chain by comparing it to the other one, which may not have been correct. Below are good guidelines on chain sizing.

http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/chain-length-sizing
http://sheldonbrown.com/derailer-adjustment.html#chain (chain length about 1/2 way down the page)

In order to diagnose we would need to know in what front/rear combos it skips, whether it takes hard pedal pressure to do so or is regular (like every crank rev or every few revs).
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#32
(03-12-2014, 09:28 PM)cny-man Wrote:  
(03-12-2014, 08:06 PM)RetFor Wrote:  ... it was riding great - until i replaced the chain with the new one i had bought and never put on. i was waiting til i got a new freewheel so that the old freewheel wouldnt damage the new chain, but after putting on the new chain it started slipping again. why might that be? is it possible the new chain is too long? i wouldnt think the small difference would do that, but the new chain IS a little longer than the old one by 3 or 4 links. i held them up to each other to see the stretch on the old one, which i did see, but i also noticed that the new one is a little longer. will that cause skipping? should i trim it down to the same number of links? the other possible cause i thought of is while the new chain seems to be coated with something, its still a bit stiffer than the old one. does that just need to be broken in? oiled? is the coating itself the cause, does that need to be washed off then the joints oiled? is there some other possible cause im missing?

thanks.
DO NOT remove the factory lube - it's as good or better than anything you would put on. Too long a chain would only cause problems in the smaller combos (small front chainwheel, smaller rear cogs.) You also do not size a chain by comparing it to the other one, which may not have been correct. Below are good guidelines on chain sizing.

http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/chain-length-sizing
http://sheldonbrown.com/derailer-adjustment.html#chain (chain length about 1/2 way down the page)

In order to diagnose we would need to know in what front/rear combos it skips, whether it takes hard pedal pressure to do so or is regular (like every crank rev or every few revs).

yeah, after posting i was looking around a bit and saw that what comes on it is better. so i guess tahts not the problem. the front can only be on the smaller cog as i havent put in the new front derailleur yet, maybe next week ill get to that. for the back, its on the bigger middle cog currently, and giving me light skipping there - when i put more pressure on the pedals. its not a regular skipping. i think the skipping was worse before i changed gears, possibly from a smaller, one, but i dont remember which it was on. ill try them out tomorrow to see whats what.
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#33
(03-12-2014, 11:37 PM)RetFor Wrote:  the front can only be on the smaller cog as i havent put in the new front derailleur yet, maybe next week ill get to that. for the back, its on the bigger middle cog currently, and giving me light skipping there - when i put more pressure on the pedals. its not a regular skipping. i think the skipping was worse before i changed gears, possibly from a smaller, one, but i dont remember which it was on. ill try them out tomorrow to see whats what.
First, there's no sense in keeping the chain too long - it' just complicates determining the problem. Secondly, skipping can happen from poor adjustment, so you need to Google "adjust rear derailleur (again parktool and sheldonbrown results are best) and go through the procedure. AGAIN - if there is a bike co-op in town avail yourself of their services. Also try to be clearer in your explanations - "bigger middle cog," "I think....possibly...I don't remember" does not give us good info. on the rear it's best to tell us it's the third cog in of 8, or 2nd smallest, or similar.
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#34
If the skipping happens every 2 or 3 pedal revolutions you may have a stiff link from where you joined the chain. There is a proper way to fix this with a chain tool. The quick/dirty way is to take the stiff link, bend it like a V, and then flex it side to side a little (90 deg. from the direction it is made to bend in.) That will usually set the plates properly.
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#35
What Dave said is accurate, but tight links usually show themselves under even light pedaling, and will do so in every gear, more so in the smaller rear cogs where the chain has to bend more to go through the pulleys.
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#36
(03-13-2014, 11:02 AM)cny-man Wrote:  
(03-12-2014, 11:37 PM)RetFor Wrote:  the front can only be on the smaller cog as i havent put in the new front derailleur yet, maybe next week ill get to that. for the back, its on the bigger middle cog currently, and giving me light skipping there - when i put more pressure on the pedals. its not a regular skipping. i think the skipping was worse before i changed gears, possibly from a smaller, one, but i dont remember which it was on. ill try them out tomorrow to see whats what.
First, there's no sense in keeping the chain too long - it' just complicates determining the problem. Secondly, skipping can happen from poor adjustment, so you need to Google "adjust rear derailleur (again parktool and sheldonbrown results are best) and go through the procedure. AGAIN - if there is a bike co-op in town avail yourself of their services. Also try to be clearer in your explanations - "bigger middle cog," "I think....possibly...I don't remember" does not give us good info. on the rear it's best to tell us it's the third cog in of 8, or 2nd smallest, or similar.

yeah, im definitely going to size it properly - when i get a chance. hopefully monday. ill look into adjusting the derailleur too, although if it was that, wouldnt it have been doing it with the old chain too? i would think that since its only since i put on the new chain that that means its something with the china, no?

"bigger middle cog" - theres 6 cogs, so thats the bigger of the two middle ones, or 4th largest.
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