Monday, May 7, 2012

The Cycle Pro, chro-mo fixed gear / free-wheel touring bike project finally finished.

Hello and Welcome,
When I last showed the Lugged Frame fixed gear / single speed bike I had not yet installed the SKS Commuter Fenders, brakes racks, lights etc.etc. I know it has been a while since I last posted.  I think the flu took a lot more out of me than I first thought. My energy level has been very low as of late. But I do have a complete physical scheduled for early June and will be stoping in to give them a blood sample in mid May.  I`m sure my Dr. will figure out what the problem is and get me back on track a.s.a.p. I do have lots to show you so I`ll get to it.

Above: Here you can see I did get the brakes hooked-up with new Jag Wire brake shoes. I also installed new Jag Wire Basics brake cables and housings. I have used road levers on Mountain Bike cantilever brakes in the past. I think you just have to get them set in close to get the brakes to work properly. But that should be the case anyway. At this point I was not totally sold on the reversed brake levers so I left the bars un taped and a little extra cable at the calipers. Also I have installed a set of Avenir Ultralight Pedals with old style toe clips (traps and straps). And I also installed two Ze Fal water bottle cages. If I`m going to be riding fixed or single speed free-wheel I want to be able to bring along plenty of fluids. At this point it only has a fixed cog but I have ordered a free wheel cog as well.
Above: I added a piece of 3M white-trim tape to the top of the down tube to hide some nasty scratches. I razor cut the tape around the lug to make it look neater.
Above: A shot of the Avenir pedals mounted on the "so called" PAKE single crank. I like these pedals and traps because they are wide enough for my wide feet. And at 20.00 US they won`t break the bank either.
Above: Here is a shot of the rear brake. You might notice that I forgot to install the barrel adjuster into the rear cable guide / hanger. This is the sort of mistake or oversight I make when I stay in the shop too late. I corrected that latter on.
Above: After test riding the bike on the fixed cog I found the handlebars and levers quite comfortable in this position. So I went ahead and taped the handlebars with Michelin Avenir Cork Bicycle Handlebar Tape.
Above: I thought the Sun Lite Front Rack was going to be a problem. But it was actually quite simple. Pretty good for such an inexpensive Sun-Lite rack. The nuts on the underside of the platform were tough to reach, but once started no problems whatsoever. I deliberately left the rack pitched towards the head-tube. I did this to keep what ever is strapped to the rack pushing on the back-stop part of the rack.
Above: The Axiom Journey Tubular Alloy Rack was also a fairly easy install. The mount rods or brackets are very adjustable both in and out and side to side. This rack is an excellent buy at about 32.00 . Most racks in this tubular style are much more expensive. You can find these on . Also this rack has the best (most) fender clearance of any rack I have ever installed. Five Stars for sure ***** When ordering any rack you will want to make sure that the mounting hardware is included. Sometimes it is not.
Above: Here the legs or struts are attached to the threaded holes on the frame. They supplied Allen head machined bolts for this, but they were not the right size for my frame. I did however have some on hand that fit perfectly. By now you may have noticed that I leave all the braze-ons on the frame when building a fixed gear bike. This is my practical side. What if I or the new owner should want to change the bike back to a multi-speed racer or Cyclocross bike. But if you want to remove the braze-ons it is fairly simple and there is at least one good video on You Tube that will show you how to do it. But the Old Ten Speed Lover that I am prevents me from permanently disfiguring my bike.
Above: I normally install the Ze Fal light set with the headlamp on my left. (as I am sitting on the bike) But on this handlebar the engraving on the right is slightly marred. So I covered it up with the headlight mount "out of sight, out of mind".
Above: For now I mounted the tail-light on the rear rack strut on the left side of the bike. Since I am normally riding in the right side of the lane this is the best location (on the struts) for it to be seen. It is easy enough to relocate the taillight should I need to in the future. Also you can see that by this point I have added the free wheel cog.
Above: I have moved my wedge tool bag to this bike as I plan to be riding it a lot in the coming weeks. I will need to bring along wrenches for the front and rear wheels as this bike does not have quick release skewers. Also I will need to mount the Ze'Fal mini pump on there as well.
Above: Before I forget, I would like to say that I am very pleased with the Vuelta Zero Lite Track Wheels. I paid 79.99 for the set plus 20.00 shipping. And they were near perfect right out of the box, and required very little truing. And they roll fantastic! There is this hill that I accelerate down to see how high I can coast up the other side. I have been dong this for years. And these wheels have out performed all the others that I have tried in this unofficial test with so far. "So For The Price" I give these wheels 5 Stars ***** . I only decided to order these wheels after I realized that I had a new set of tires laying around that would fit them perfectly. And am I glad I did? You bet I am! Now some pics of the finished project.
Above: View from front right, shooting slightly downward.
Above: Right side view, shooting level.
Above: Left side view, shooting slightly downward.
Above: view from left rear, shooting level.
Above: View from the front left, shooting downward.
above: THE END Until next time, Please RIDE SAFE and Remember to Always RESCUE, RESTORE & RECYCLE!! Cheers,Hugh


  1. Nice rebuild. I have two of those simple front racks. I love the black version. The silver version has tarnished, or should I say "dulled" to a nickel finish. But both racks perform very well and are worth the price.

    By the way, nice touch with the white tape.

    1. Thanks Annie,
      The hardest part was trying to locate an inexpensive short rack-top bag for the front rack. I finally found a mini set of throw-over bags or panniers. But I do not think they will work on the front. But if not I will use them for my short trips into town on the rear rack.
      And thanks for the review of the silver version of the mini rack. :)

  2. Nice job Hugh, I thought the white line on the down tube was stock until I read your piece about adding the 3m tape -looks sharp. I have what I think is the exact same front rack, mine was from Nashbar at something like $10 on sale and has worked well for light loads for about 4 years. You may have mentioned it in another post but is that the stock fork or a new one?

    I am interested to hear how you like the SS/FG touring bike for longer rides I imagine you will get a few double takes when other cyclists on the back roads of MI realize you are on a single-speed and not a geared touring bike.

  3. Hugh,you are an inspiration to us all!



  4. Very nice, Hugh, as always. Do you think that front rack would work on the rear? Some guys have been doing that as extra support/stabilization for an oversized Carradice-type saddle bag. I wonder if the range of adjustment on the Sunlite would work out.


    1. Hey TJ
      I would imagine some sort of adapter could be fashioned to make it work. Or if the seat stays have threaded mounting holes maybe those could be used.
      It is funny you should bring this up. My original plan was to use an old rear mini rack on the front. But my buddy Ken did such a nice job sand-blasting and re-welding it, I decided to save it for a future build. Thanks for bringing that up. Cheers

  5. Hey Ryan,
    Thanks for the review of the mini front rack. And I agree, I have seen the Nashbar version and it is essentially the same rack. It is good for folks to know, They do not have to spend a lot of money for a "light duty" rack.
    I won`t be taking any long rides on the fixed gear. Unless I can get a good look at a topographical map of the route first! LTMS
    About the tape, Thanks "necessity truly is the Mother of invention"
    P.S. I ride often in the summer months, But it is highly unusual for me to go over 16 miles. Or twice around the lake. (Kent lake near Milford). The bike trail at Indian Springs is about the same distance.(twice around)

  6. To Tim Joe's Point I think if both the rack and bike are set up for canti brakes you can swap between front and back, and I seem to remember Grant Petersen selling Pletsher Racks (don't need canti mounts) on the Riv site and showing them set up for either front or rear.

    1. Hey Ryan,
      Wow that makes perfect sense! The canti posts would be at the same height front or back. Thanks for that bit of info.

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