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  1. #1
    Steep Hill
    Reputation: AZClydesdale's Avatar
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    Newbee question re: SS conversion of a '94 GT Timberline...

    I desperately want to break into SS, but my gold bullion coffer is nearly empty making a new bike is a difficult proposition. Could you tell me if this is a good idea and if I need to prepare for anything else? I am 230lbs if that matters...

    I found a very good condition '94 GT Timberline bike for $75. It has all the stock components and appears to be very ridable in its current state. There are no dents in the frame which I believe is steel but it may be aluminum. It has U-brakes, a rigid front fork which I would like to replace with 85mm travel (as in a Marzocchi MX Pro, etc).

    Is this a decent price?
    Do I need a SS Crankset?
    Do I need a SS ring?
    What about the rear deraillure?
    Do I need SS Hubs?
    Anything else?

    Thanks for reading this and answering silly questions...

    Steve

  2. #2
    Ebo
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    Go for it...

    Quote Originally Posted by AZClydesdale
    I desperately want to break into SS, but my gold bullion coffer is nearly empty making a new bike is a difficult proposition. Could you tell me if this is a good idea and if I need to prepare for anything else? I am 230lbs if that matters...

    I found a very good condition '94 GT Timberline bike for $75. It has all the stock components and appears to be very ridable in its current state. There are no dents in the frame which I believe is steel but it may be aluminum. It has U-brakes, a rigid front fork which I would like to replace with 85mm travel (as in a Marzocchi MX Pro, etc).

    Is this a decent price?
    Do I need a SS Crankset?
    Do I need a SS ring?
    What about the rear deraillure?
    Do I need SS Hubs?
    Anything else?

    Thanks for reading this and answering silly questions...

    Steve

    You can get started cheaply. A trader here in Mtbr classifieds sells the spacer kit with Shimano cog for about $13.00 shipped. Believe he goes by Flashzone. Use your rear derailleur for a tensioner. Most importantly, read the FAQ on the top of the SS forum. Link provided by Shiggy. It is very well put together and will answer your many questions. Have fun with it.

  3. #3
    DSR
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    A couple answers / opinions...

    - $75 seems like a good price for a complete bike. Maybe you could kill yourself searching for a better deal, but how much more can you save off of $75, you know?
    - You should be able to just take off the big and small rings, assuming that the middle is a reasonable size. An SS specific crankset looks cleaner, but I assume you're looking to do this on the cheap
    - You'll probably want to keep that rear der to take up the chain slack unless 1) you are lucky and can get your desired gear ratio to work without it or 2) you'd prefer going with a convert/melvin/singleator
    - No need for SS hubs

    Check the SS FAQ which I think has a conversion section, but here are the main things...
    - You'll need a cog and some spacers to get the chainline straight
    - If it's got integrated shifters/brake levers, you may want to dump em and get some cheap standalone levers
    - Consider keep the rigid fork since alot of SS is spent out-of-the-saddle and front suspension can be annoying. At least start rigid. You can always add a suspension fork

    Those are the basics. Start off like that. Minimal investment. If you get into it, then consider upgrading stuff or just getting a more SS specific bike.

    And again, check out the FAQ. S

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ernesto_from_Wisconsin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZClydesdale

    Is this a decent price?
    Do I need a SS Crankset?
    Do I need a SS ring?
    What about the rear deraillure?
    Do I need SS Hubs?
    Anything else?

    Thanks for reading this and answering silly questions...

    Steve
    Welcome to the real world of bliss.
    Do I need a SS Crankset? no, do with what you have. All you need is an unramped chainring, preferably a 32 or 34 tooth one. So keep your cranks, just get a new ring.

    Do I need a SS ring? um, yes. Ramps will derrail your chain and you could fall and hit your forehead on the ground.

    What about the rear deraillure? not if you are a beginner to this and are experimenting, you can use it as a tensioner like I did several years ago.

    Do I need SS Hubs? If you're getting a SS specific frame, then just the rear hub. White Industries, Chris King, Phil Wood, Surly, and there's others. If you're keeping your frame, I'd suggest the White Ind. Eccentric Hub, which works with vertical dropouts. Really puts the tension on so you don't have to use a tensioner. This renders any frame a true single speed: http://www.adventurefind.com/bikes.html. See, vertical dropouts, ENO hubs from http://www.whiteind.com/eno.htm

    Anything else? Yes, comb your hair, kiss your mom, and look both ways before crossing the street.
    Last edited by ernesto_from_Wisconsin; 02-06-2007 at 07:16 PM.

  5. #5
    Ebo
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    A ramped ring will work fine.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Brandon's Avatar
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    Go for it!

    My SS was formerly a GT timberline, but a little newer than the one you're looking at. (it had 1.125" headset and normal canti brake posts). I had it retrofitted with an EBB by vulture cycles. It's a solid frame (I weigh about the same as you) as Redhaze can attest. That's an old enough frame you probably need a 1" steerer but luckily MArzocchi still makes forks for 1".

  7. #7
    Steep Hill
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    Eure-ka

    SSers may not be the prettiest MTBers out there, but you all are certainly the most helpful. Nice FAQ section too. Thanks for all this (and future) info as I begin my search for singlespeed Nirvana.

    S

  8. #8
    King Pin
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    Ss.

    Don't do it, Clyde! Once you make that turn, there's no going back!

    You will spank your geared/suspended buddies to no end. Trust me on this one.

    From a Northern Arizona Clydesdale.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
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    Cool. I got a new Scott Aspect 45 but I had a 1995 GT Timberline that I got when I was 12 (I'm 24 now) and have been riding up until now.

    I plan on converting it to a Single Speed but hopefully can have the help of a friend's buddy who has a Single Speed and knows how to work on bikes very well.

    Which the bike has almost been a single speed. The front derailer quit working and all I could get was the 2nd gear. Then on the rear only the 1,3,4,7 gears wouldn't skip like crazy so I mainly stayed in 3rd or 4th.

    I do need some higher handlebars and stem since I'm extremely hunched over on this bike.
    Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.
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