Building a bike - how hard?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Paul, Jul 7, 2003.

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  1. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?

    I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are fairly
    limited but I am toying with the idea of buying a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting
    computers together too but there seems to be something of a differance between a computer failing to
    boot because a card isn't seated properly and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!

    I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    would be beyond me (not having the tools doesn't help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have
    a great LBS who could do this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to
    learn some skills.

    I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I hope) to buy compatible kit.

    Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?

    Kind Regards, Paul.
     
    Tags:


  2. Scott C

    Scott C Guest

    Although I have no answers for you on this, I too have thought hard about this, as I would enjoy the
    process.. but here's what this group told me.. it's far more expensive doing this, than buying a
    bike. Dealers will sell parts at some 50% markup, making the cost of your bike very expensive.. vs
    when they build a bike and take a less markup due to competition. I'll be curious what we learn from
    your post. I just bought a bike (TREK 300) and have taken it apart lubing all over again so I know
    it's OK. I did not disassemble the spokes.. or anything to this detail, but did pull apart all
    breaks, bearings, and tweak all.

    sc

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!
    >
    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.
    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?
    >
    > Kind Regards, Paul.
     
  3. > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!
    >
    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.
    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?
    >
    > Kind Regards, Paul.

    I think it's a great way to learn. Some things are better left to the pro's the first time around or
    at least better done with a good book or some supervision but most of it is pretty straightforward
    and intuitive. That said, there are a few things that take some practice and for which a little
    'theory' doesn't hurt. Like setting up canti brakes or greasing hubs. It's probably not the cheapest
    way to go but if you want to learn how to take the bike apart and maintain it then it's worth the
    extra money. Actually, with some patience and ebay skills you can build a pretty decent bike at a
    very competitive price. I built up a 105 level beater, with mostly new parts, for about $305. The
    first time around it's likely you'll make a few mistaken purchases which will cause the price to
    creep up a little but in my experience if you take your time and do a little research it can be a
    really fun experience. Good luck.

    Rob Strickland
     
  4. Lee

    Lee Guest

    Well, if you know what you're doing, you can source everything on ebay. It takes a while, and you
    *can* get burnt...but I've built 3 bikes from bare frames via ebay, and probably saved about 50-60%
    off best retail.

    ...and these are Colnago or equivalent frames with Campy Record 9 componentry...

    Lee

    "Scott C" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Although I have no answers for you on this, I too have thought hard about this, as I would enjoy
    > the process.. but here's what this group told me.. it's far more expensive doing this, than buying
    > a bike. Dealers will sell parts at some 50% markup, making the cost of your bike very expensive..
    > vs when they build a bike and take a less markup due to competition. I'll be curious what we learn
    > from your post. I just bought a bike (TREK 300) and have taken it apart lubing all over again so I
    > know it's OK. I did not disassemble the spokes.. or anything to this detail, but did pull apart
    all
    > breaks, bearings, and tweak all.
    >
    > sc
    >
    > "Paul" <[email protected]i12.com> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a
    bike?
    > >
    > > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    > buying
    > > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too
    but
    > > there seems to be something of a differance between a computer failing
    to
    > > boot because a card isn't seated properly and your bicycle wheels
    falling
    > > off in heavy traffic!
    > >
    > > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    > doesn't
    > > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who
    could
    > do
    > > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    > >
    > > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could
    probably
    > > fit the componetry, chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    > hope)
    > > to buy compatible kit.
    > >
    > > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best
    left
    > > to the professionals?
    > >
    > > Kind Regards, Paul.
    > >
    >
     
  5. S. Anderson

    S. Anderson Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!
    >
    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.
    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?
    >
    > Kind Regards, Paul.
    >
    >

    It's not rocket science. If you have the inclination and the time to set down and do it correctly,
    you can certainly build your own bike and it can be very enjoyable. Like you say, know your
    limitations and don't expect to be able to do everything yourself. If you have absolutely no bike
    experience though, you will get frustrated. I'd suggest building up a clunker first before setting
    to work on your new Litespeed..There are issues you need to watch out for, mostly the need for
    special tools that will stop your assembly cold. For instance, if you buy a chain in a bag, you'll
    need to remove links before it will fit, which means you need a chain tool. So if you don't have
    one, you can't set up the derailleurs etc. until that's done. Which means a trip to the shop to have
    that installed and back home again. After a few times in the car, you'll get upset that your paint
    isn't doing very well with all this moving around. So you might want to consider the need to buy a
    few special tools like a chain tool, cone wrenches (13mm and 15mm probably..), 8mm (10??) allen key
    for the cranks etc. before you start. Once you have it all together and you're happy with it, you
    could ask the shop to check it over and see how you did, just to make sure it's safe. Like I say,
    start with a clunker and graduate to a good bike. I do have to say though, most people who try to do
    it on their own usually make a hash of it. Even people who do regular maintenance sometimes get in
    over their head and do some pretty strange things. Be brave!!

    Cheers,

    Scott..
     
  6. B. Sanders

    B. Sanders Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!

    You're right about that. Bikes can fail at the most inopportune moments, it seems.

    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.

    Agreed. I do have the skills, and even a homemade headset press; but I still have the local shop
    install headset and BB. The lower bearing race mounting to the fork isn't terribly difficult - just
    use a punch and a small hammer, very carefully work it onto the seat. Then again, might be better to
    have the shop do that, too.

    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.

    You're already ahead of most beginners in that you are aware of the need for a torque wrench. You'll
    need/want a cable cutter, set of metric Allen wrenches, chain breaker and possibly a chain whip.

    It's also very handy to have a cassette removal tool, bottom bracket removal/installtion tool (for
    your type of BB), 1/2" and/or 3/8" socket wrenches with metric sockets (10mm, 14mm, 15mm) and a
    crank puller. I highly recommend Park brand tools - best tool investments I've ever made.

    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?

    It's not only reasonable, it's the key to a lifetime of enjoyment. For me, building up a bike in my
    humble basement shop puts me into a Zen-like state of calm. It's not so complicated that it
    overwhelms you; but it does require your undivided attention. The simple elegance of fine cycle
    components being given purpose by the bike builder is a beautiful thing. It's a bit like giving
    birth (but far less painful and messy ;-) I can't get enough of it, which probably explains why I've
    built up or completely customized/overhauled somewhere north of 25 bikes in the past 8 years or so.
    (I have lost count.) Some have gone to charities, some to friends, some I've kept, some I've sold.

    My recommendation is for you to find a beautiful older bike in excellent low-mileage condition for a
    cheap price. If it's incomplete, or needs minor repair, so much the better. Take it apart, clean it
    all up, rebuild all of the bearings with new balls and clean grease, and put it back together again.
    Not only will you feel the satisfaction of restoring/rebuilding a bike; but you'll be developing
    skills for when you do take the plunge and build up your dream bike. There's a lot more pressure
    when you have $2,000+ tied up in a bike than when you have <$300 tied up in it. Better to start in
    the low-pressure situation. Maybe you'll fall in love with the older bike's simplicity and
    reliability, and it will serve you well for a very long time, or be passed along to a friend or
    family member.

    Have fun!

    Barry Sanders
     
  7. Mark Hickey

    Mark Hickey Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    >I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    >fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of buying a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy
    >putting computers together too but there seems to be something of a differance between a
    >computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly and your bicycle wheels falling
    >off in heavy traffic!
    >
    >I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    >would be beyond me (not having the tools doesn't help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I
    >have a great LBS who could do this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way
    >to learn some skills.
    >
    >I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    >chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I hope) to buy compatible kit.
    >
    >Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?

    It's certainly possible. In fact, I'm getting ready to offer a "bike in a box" that comes with an
    assembly video. It would actually be a bit cheaper than the built bike when all is said and done
    (and the pride factor should be considerably higher).

    Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
     
  8. Chris Hughes

    Chris Hughes Guest

    I've built 4 bikes in the last 20 years and it's not that hard. Thr biggrst problem I ever had was
    with an Itailian bottom bracket and that was install by the shop I purchased the frame from. I'm not
    blaming the shop but I would advise against an Italian bottom bracket. Get a set of allen keys to go
    with the torque wrench. I have always cut cables with a chisel and dressed them on a grinder. Cone
    wrenchs are handy and I would get tools for the bottom bracket and freewheel. I have a tool for the
    cranks but don't use it now as I have splined bottom brackets on both of my bike. A repair stand
    comes in real handy, I have a homemade one but I built my first bike by hanging it from the ceiling
    with rope. Lastly get a good book and read the instructions that come with the parts. There is also
    good advise on the net ie. Parks, Shimano and others.

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!
    >
    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.
    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?
    >
    > Kind Regards, Paul.
     
  9. On Mon, 7 Jul 2003 22:16:01 +0100, "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    >I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    >fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of buying a frame and building up a bike.

    Buy the book "Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance" or "Zinn and the Art of Mountain Bike
    Maintenance", whichever applies.

    Amazon or most good bookstores will have it.

    READ IT. You will then be able to make your own decision. I'll bet with the book, you can do it.

    Barry
     
  10. Lewdvig

    Lewdvig Guest

    Learning is half the fun.

    Start with a beater.

    "B a r r y B u r k e J r ." <Keep it in the [email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > On Mon, 7 Jul 2003 22:16:01 +0100, "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a
    bike?
    > >
    > >I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > >fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > >a frame and building up a bike.
    >
    > Buy the book "Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance" or "Zinn and the Art of Mountain Bike
    > Maintenance", whichever applies.
    >
    > Amazon or most good bookstores will have it.
    >
    > READ IT. You will then be able to make your own decision. I'll bet with the book, you can do it.
    >
    > Barry
     
  11. Ant

    Ant Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of buying a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy
    > putting computers together too but there seems to be something of a differance between a computer
    > failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy
    > traffic!
    >

    it is true that your computer doesnt carry your life in its hands (though it did seem that
    way during finals last year). but that is not to say that you shouldnt try working on a bike
    of your own.

    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools doesn't help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I
    > have a great LBS who could do this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good
    > way to learn some skills.

    agreed. building the bike from components will be one way to really ramp up the learning curve. i
    knew a deal about bikes before i did this, but it was all a lot of work on old junkers, and 80s
    POSs. i bought components, built it from the ground up, and learned a lot.

    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I hope) to buy compatible kit.

    you will always need a few more tools. bikes have their own proprietary spline tools, use metric
    bolts and allen keys, and such. but nothing that will cost you an arm and a leg. the 50 dollar
    mostly Lifu brand kits sold (or rebadged and sold) by most mailorder bike places will take you
    through any basic bike build with nary a problem.

    its nice that you have a torque wrench. components bought separately come with detailed directions
    smattered with various appropriate torques. in addition, there are lists of appropriate torques in
    the RBT FAQ, etc. over or under tightening a fastener is one thing that a mechanically
    not-so-awesome individual might do that coudl result in pain at a later time. with a manual and a
    torque wrench, and care, you can do no wrong.

    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?

    absolutely. i absolutely think it is a reasonable proposition. if you are not confident in your
    mechanical skills- so what? go slower. read the directions. buy a 20 dollar book that covers basic
    stuff like the bicycling magazine guide and you will have there more than enough to walk you through
    the basics of putting a bike together. i dont think any perceived mechanicla incompetence shoudl
    turn you off. not that you were saying you were incompetent- im just taking it to the extreme.
    further, i truly believe that given enough time you could do every step of the build on your own. it
    just takes time, patience, and the appropriatge research either in books, or this newsgroup from the
    google archives. if you wanted, you could press your own headset, build your own wheels, and
    anything else you wanted if you just take the time to do it right.

    an added advantage to building a bike from new components is that they are new.. new parts go
    together so beautifully well. it is when one is dealing with old bikes, with issues, with rusty
    parts, with questionable histories, that things get iffy.

    another poster mentioned ebay. i dont have the patience for ebay. for me, whenever i try to find
    something i wanted on ebay, i cna always find it just as cheap from some discount place somewhere
    else. perhaps if you troll the auction search for months youll happen to find all the partgs you
    need for cheap, but it hasnt worked for me. sometimes i find stuff on ebay for a small percentage
    off the lowest price i can find on the web, but that small margin isnt worth it for the wait, the
    questionability of the seller, and the fact that it is simple to return something to an internet
    store, and difficult to return it to an individual.

    if you want to build from components, buying from an LBS is wallet-death. sorry LBS's. best bet is
    to buy from intgernet discount joints, or huge sellers like nashbar, et al. the trick is to know
    what you want, which you presumanly dont. you could just check out the component list of a bike you
    were intersted in trying to make something similar to. or you could buy that 20 dollar book, read
    it, and then you'd have an idea.

    alternatively, you could buy a bike, break it down to its bearings and spokes, and put it back
    together. you wont get a custom build, but you will get the full experience, save a packet, and its
    likely it will be better when youre done with it than when you boguht it.

    i say go for it.

    -anthony
     
  12. Jeff

    Jeff Guest

    Do it! Assembling computers is a good analogy, if you enjoy that you will likely enjoy assembling
    a bicycle.

    My recommendation
    - Buy a book, Zinn gets recommended
    - Buy a thrift-store or yard sale bike, or maybe a friend or relative has a beater
    - Repack the hub and headset bearings
    - Take out the cranks, bottom bracket and reassemble
    - Take the brakes apart, clean and reassemble
    - Maybe new cables, bar tape, chain and brake pads, but otherwise just play with the original parts

    You will buy some special tools, maybe a crank puller, bottom bracket tool, cone wrenches.

    You will learn a lot, find how well you like it and be ready for bike #2.

    > > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too
    but
    > > there seems to be something of a differance between a computer failing
    to
    > > boot because a card isn't seated properly and your bicycle wheels
    falling
    > > off in heavy traffic!
     
  13. Jon Bond

    Jon Bond Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!
    >
    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.
    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?
    >
    > Kind Regards, Paul.

    I just built my new fully up from scratch last week. I had a bit of help pressing in the headset at
    the shop I work at, both otherwise did everything myself. I don't have a torque wrench,
    unfortunately, but I do have a pretty good feel for it, and I got pretty damn close when I checked
    the torques again. It would be a good idea to get one though, they definitely help.

    I did not build the wheels, but I'm assuming you aren't doing that either.

    I estimate it took me around 8 hours to build up my bike from bare frame. A large part of this was
    fussing with my hydraulic disc brakes though. Especially when one of them didn't have quite enough
    torque on a screw that held the hose to the lever, and started leaking all over the place! What a
    mess. It was my first experience with hydraulics, but I've ridden the bike pretty hard since I built
    it thursday, (at least 40 hard technical off-road miles), and the only problems I have is a bit of
    brake squeal due to the bit of oil I spilled on the rear pads (d'oh!) and some cable adjustment. If
    I had a repair stand, I probably would have shaved some time off - adjusting derailleurs while
    trying to hold the bike up with the saddle on your shoulder is not fun!

    Its good fun. I'd bring it in to your shop to check over it if you haven't done it before. I've
    replaced or repaired pretty much every component (actually EVERY component besides the frame!) on my
    old mountain bike at some point in the last four years, so I had a pretty good idea what I was
    getting into and what I was doing.

    As for specialized tools: a crank puller is nice to have, it makes cleaning a lot easier. If you're
    using a square taper BB, just leave it on. If you're using a splined one, it can be removed a lot
    more often without much risk of damage. BB tools aren't too expensive - $15 or so. I had to search
    for mine a bit because it was an external spline pattern rather than an internal one. Damn Truvativ
    for not going with normal standards! Cable cutters are very handy. Torque wrench is ideal, as is a
    stand, but not 100% necessary. NEW hex wrench set is always nice - don't want to round out those new
    bolts! Cone wrenches if you're up to adjusting your own hubs. Get some grease and some general
    purpose lube. Lube EVERY SINGLE THREADED PART on your bike, except for the ones that have locktite
    on them. If you're using titanium anything, get ti-antiseize instead. Grease the seatpost, splined
    BB/cranks, pretty much anywhere metal touches metal.

    Its a lot of fun to do, and you get a kind of good feeling knowing that you've "earned" your bike -
    you built it with your own two hands, and now you're trusting your life with it, and suceeding. At
    least, you hope you are.

    Jon Bond
     
  14. John McGraw

    John McGraw Guest

    "Chris Hughes" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>... wrote: .
    There is also good advise on the
    > net ie. Parks, Shimano and others.
    >
    Good advise from Shimano? Where? I've read here that Shimano Euro's web site has tech info. I've
    visited it several times & I'll be damned if I can find any. Could someone please tell me how to
    find tech. info @ Shimano Euro? I feel like the rookie sent to find a left-handed Crescent wrench.
    Please reveal the secret passage to the Shimano Euro site. Or at least let me in on the fact that
    existence of tech info there is a giant hoax perpetrated by none other that the redoubtable Sheldon
    Brown. John
     
  15. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Wow, thanks for all the thoughts. I had been toying with the idea of building up my next bike but
    the advice about starting of with a cheap secondhand bike makes a lot of sense. I'd hate to save for
    ages for my ideal bike and then make a hash of putting it together. Equally my bike is my main
    source of transport and the warranty and backup of a complete bike bought through a dealer is a
    reassurance too.

    I think I'll plan to buy a pre-made bike when I'm ready for a new one and keep an eye out for
    secondhand one to take apart and rebuild. The cost implications of buying retail components is worth
    knowing as well (it's exactly the same with computers).

    I'm pretty excited about the prospect of getting into bike building, maybe in a year or two with
    some experience working on secondhand bikes, and a more fully equiped set of tools I'll be ready to
    build my dream bike.

    Many thanks again for all the ideas. With Kind Regards to you all, Paul.
     
  16. Erik Brooks

    Erik Brooks Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?

    There's some fine advice in this thread. I've built up a couple, using mostly one of the $50 tool
    sets mentioned by another poster. If a tool I need is not in that set, or I want a better quality
    replacement (it's happened), I buy a Park tool from the LBS.

    One thing I haven't seen mentioned yet is that later on, when you have a problem with your bike,
    perhaps on the road, you will be much better prepared to analyse the issue and fix the problem.
    And you will know which parts of bike maintainence and repair to do yourself and which to leave
    to the pros.

    Go for it! I agree with the other advise to do it first on a beater. Also, it might be wise to have
    your LBS or a knowledgable friend look over the completed bike very carefully to look for issues.

    Good luck!

    Erik Brooks
     
  17. Mark Hickey

    Mark Hickey Guest

  18. On 8 Jul 2003 01:01:28 -0700, [email protected] (John McGraw) wrote:

    >Good advise from Shimano? Where?

    Navigate to the product page for the particular part, click on service instructions PDF. Presto,
    installation/maintenance manuals.

    Jasper
     
  19. Dion Dock

    Dion Dock Guest

    Do you want to ride or spend time working with tools? If you want to ride, pay to have a shop build
    it up. You'll be riding it in much less time. Then learn to fix things as they go out of adjustment.

    -Dion

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Well, now the big question for me. How difficult is it to build up a bike?
    >
    > I'm fairly new to cycling and have been seriously bitten by the bug. My mechanical skills are
    > fairly limited but I am toying with the idea of
    buying
    > a frame and building up a bike. I enjoy putting computers together too but there seems to be
    > something of a differance between a computer failing to boot because a card isn't seated properly
    > and your bicycle wheels falling off in heavy traffic!
    >
    > I suppose one advantage is that I know my limitations and fitting the headset and bottom bracket
    > would be beyond me (not having the tools
    doesn't
    > help) and perhaps fitting the forks also but I have a great LBS who could
    do
    > this - they'd build the whole thing of course but it seems a good way to learn some skills.
    >
    > I have a reasonable set of tools and a torque wrench and so could probably fit the componetry,
    > chainset, bars, gears etc. and am bright enough (I
    hope)
    > to buy compatible kit.
    >
    > Does this seem a reasonable proposition or is the whole endevour best left to the professionals?
    >
    > Kind Regards, Paul.
     
  20. Julian

    Julian Guest

    On 8 Jul 2003 01:01:28 -0700, [email protected] (John McGraw) wrote:

    >"Chris Hughes" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>... wrote: .
    >There is also good advise on the
    >> net ie. Parks, Shimano and others.
    >>
    >Good advise from Shimano? Where? I've read here that Shimano Euro's web site has tech info. I've
    >visited it several times & I'll be damned if I can find any. Could someone please tell me how to
    >find tech. info @ Shimano Euro? I feel like the rookie sent to find a left-handed Crescent wrench.
    >Please reveal the secret passage to the Shimano Euro site. Or at least let me in on the fact that
    >existence of tech info there is a giant hoax perpetrated by none other that the redoubtable Sheldon
    >Brown. John

    Go here: http://www.shimano-europe.com/cycling/

    Click on the Mtn. Biking or Road Racing link at the bottom

    Type in the part number in the product search box.

    Voila! PDF's with exploded views & service instructions.
     
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