vintage road bike conversion
Measure this distance from ground to the upper top of the book to find out your inseam measurement. An old English three-speed frame can be a good candidate for an upgrade too. It is not at all unusual to want to add lower gearing and more precise shifting to an older bike, a bike that in other ways may be quite satisfactory. They can also make an adequate "starter" fixed gear. Bikes in this category can make excellent general-purpose bikes, and their general ride comfort may make them worth moderate investment, especially if you have some attachment to the particular bike.
You can read more about a frame which had been opened by this method here.
The older frame the more likely it is to have much deeper brake depth than modern brakes. A broken frame that you can't get repaired can really slow you down on a bicycle tour, and your companions too. If you have an older bike with little resale value, you might want to use it as a "beater" for utility riding. There are way around this such as extra deep brakes. If you have less than 126mm spacing, we will recommend fitting a new brake bridge. The older the frame is, the more alterations its going to need in order to fit modern equipment. On the other hand, if you're in a part of the world where there are hills, and perhaps have gained some weight with the years, it's quite possible that the gearing that was satisfactory to you when you were younger no longer cuts it. The manufacturers were caught by surprise, and product was suddenly in very short supply. Local welders, almost anywhere, can perform ugly but functional repairs that will get you back on the road. This sort of bike should be reserved for "fair weather" riding only.
Yes, a typical steel road-bike frame is going to weigh a pound or three more than the latest carbon-fiber wonder. Many of these bikes are of very high quality, but are going unused either because of older technology in the gearing, or because their racing-style riding position no longer suits the needs of their aging owners.
Better older English and French road bikes often provide considerably more ride comfort at the front end, without making the forks unduly weak. I would say our customers are split 50:50 between building their renovated frames up with period components and converting them to take modern equipment but in a retro style. In which case it’s not a case of just dropping a 700c in.
Great… except when you force the dropouts apart it will stress the seatstays especially around the brake bridge and the frame won’t be in track any more! Another approach with such a bike is to do upgrades that can be reversed later, saving the original parts for possible future restoration.
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