Will this bike work?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Will this bike work?

    Ok so I have been commuting to work for a few weeks now on my mtb. It is 16 miles each way and I'm loving it. I was talking to a guy at work about bikes and he said he had a racing bike he would give it to me and of course I said sure. This bike has been sitting for a long time it needs tires and tubes but thats about it. All the components are shimano 600 and work perfect. I was hoping to use it to commute if it will work.Maybe it would make things a little easier. I dont know anything about road bikes and just started riding trails a few years ago. Thanks for any advice and sorry for the newb questions. I took pics of both of my bikes.




  2. #2
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    I say as long as it fits I'd go for it I'd have an LBS go over it and get it tuned real well for that long ride and you'll be set!
    The most important thing is what God thinks about it. He will have the final say. Joshua Stinebrink

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  3. #3
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    That's about like what I ride to work.

    Except maybe a little nicer. If it fits, it's quite a score.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  4. #4
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    Looks like yr Marin is better.

  5. #5
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I think if I was racing my clone to work and one of us was on each bike, the me on the Centurion would beat the tar out of the me on the Marin. It doesn't take that good or that new a road bike to be faster on the road. It's also nice to be able to keep a mountain bike set up like a mountain bike, rather than having commute accessories stuck to it.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ae111black
    I say as long as it fits I'd go for it I'd have an LBS go over it and get it tuned real well for that long ride and you'll be set!
    +1 First, it looks like you know there is no such thing as a free bike.

    I own, ride, maintain, and have upgraded two bikes that are over 25 years old. One was a 'gift'.

    If you are mechanically inclined, you can do a lot of the replacement and bearing servicing work yourself. I just err on the side of replacement of cheap stuff known to wear out or cause control issues (rusty cables, rare now they are stainless but common for galvanized ones). The LBS labor to install is more than the cost of the parts. Don't forget to service all bearings, including the headset, and grease the seat tube and stem to keep water out. If you don't have the tools or budget for them, you may elect to leave this to the LBS. A frozen crankset is not an easy thing to deal with. If you do all or part of the work yourself, let the pros tweak it or at least inspect and certify your work, if you are new at this. My experience is they will give pointers on doing it better if you want and what tools you need.

    It looks from the picture that this bike may be fitted with 27" (630 mm) rims. If so, the selection of 630 mm tires is limited and while they won't go completely extinct for a while yet, the selection is not going to get better. Conversion to 622 (700C) allowed me to fit 35 mm with fenders (37 mm without) with more clearance than 27 x 1 1/4 (32 mm) and I can put on 25 mm and strip it for a short blast on good pavement if I want. If you are lighter, the 27 x 1 1/8" (28 mm) size may be great for you and this size will be available for some time to come.
    Last edited by BrianMc; 04-01-2010 at 06:26 AM.

  7. #7
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    Thanks guys I'm gonna take it to the lbs today and have him take a look. Would it be stupid to put staight bars on it or is that possible? I know I would have to change levers.

  8. #8
    weirdo
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    Quote Originally Posted by moonedzx9
    Thanks guys I'm gonna take it to the lbs today and have him take a look. Would it be stupid to put staight bars on it or is that possible? I know I would have to change levers.
    Not stupid, but really not worth it. You`ve got a great old Japanese bike there and, while it wouldn`t exactly be blasphemy to chop it (worse has been done), I think it`s kind of a shame. Besides that, there will be fit issues to deal with since bike frames are designed with a certain bar type in mind. Very good bike for a 16 mile paved commute. Nice frame, Shimano 600 is nice stuff, you mostly escaped the dreaded Hawiian Shirt paint scheme, and it`ll be compatible with modern stuff if you ever break or just want to upgrade something. Here`s a nice article on Centurion if you`re interrested:
    http://sheldonbrown.com/centurion/index.html
    Recalculating....

  9. #9
    No-Brakes Cougar
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    moonedzx9, that is a beautiful old Centurion! And free? Holy crap! I can't tell from the pic, but I'll bet it has a lugged frame as well. And the quintessential '80s paint job to boot. I think you definitely scored with a vintage road bike there. Enjoy it!
    R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio ~ July 10, 1942 May 16, 2010

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by moonedzx9
    Thanks guys I'm gonna take it to the lbs today and have him take a look. Would it be stupid to put staight bars on it or is that possible? I know I would have to change levers.
    The first time I rode drop bars, they terrified me. I didn't feel like I had any control, and the position (probably set up wrong, in retrospect) seemed way too low and forward.

    Now, I can't imagine spending long periods on the road without at least bar ends. Give the drops a chance, and then swap them out in a few weeks if you can't get them to work for you.

    On my two road bikes that fit me well, the position riding on the flat part of the handlebar has a shorter reach than the position on my mountain bike, while the position riding with my hands on the brake hoods has a little bit more drop and a longer reach. It's a lot like riding on the barends on my MTB, but with my hands closer together. How you set up yours is, of course, up to you.

    If the bike is too big for you, you may never be able to make drop bars comfortable. You might also consider moustache bars, which have some pretty strong fans, or short bullhorns. They won't shorten the reach as much as a flat bar.

    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch
    I think if I was racing my clone to work and one of us was on each bike, the me on the Centurion would beat the tar out of the me on the Marin. It doesn't take that good or that new a road bike to be faster on the road. It's also nice to be able to keep a mountain bike set up like a mountain bike, rather than having commute accessories stuck to it.

    x2

    You can't go wrong. Get it, ride it, tweak it, enjoy it.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  12. #12
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    I got my new tires today and rode it all day and I love it. The drop bars aren't as bad as I thought. I just have to get use to the brakes being low. It's at the lbs getting a rack put on now.

  13. #13
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    Its good to go now. I put all new tires and tubes, rear rack, computer, wrapped handle bars, head light, tail light and water bottle cages.

  14. #14
    weirdo
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    Oh, yeah! Sweet bike that I wouldn`t mind riding myself (if I were about six inches taller). You have a generous co-worker. The fit is fine? I`m guessing it came with 700c wheels, yes? And is it a 7 speed rear? Anyway, I`m glad you decided to invest a little in it and I`m sure it`ll be worth your trouble. If the shifting gives you any grief, try new cables and housings before laying down any big money- modern housings are miraculous.
    Recalculating....

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar
    Oh, yeah! Sweet bike that I wouldn`t mind riding myself (if I were about six inches taller). You have a generous co-worker. The fit is fine? I`m guessing it came with 700c wheels, yes? And is it a 7 speed rear? Anyway, I`m glad you decided to invest a little in it and I`m sure it`ll be worth your trouble. If the shifting gives you any grief, try new cables and housings before laying down any big money- modern housings are miraculous.
    Yes sweet, too small for me, though. And 'The Duchess' woud be jealous.

    +1 on the shift cables and housings, now I think on it.

    Oh, though counterintuitive, DT friction shifters work best clean and well lubricated with chain lube. The art of maintaining them is becoming rare. Disassemble, clean, reassemble in reverse order, drip in a bit of lube, and tighten to hold selection. Done. It will make them run like new again, especially if the oil degraded or dirt contaminated them.

    Enjoy a nice bike. Re-bicycling is SO cool.

  16. #16
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    It is 7 speed in the rear. It came with 700 x 20 on it and I put 700 x 25 on it. I just happened to luck into this bike. I was asking everybody if they had a old 10 speed laying around and he said he had one to give me. I've put around 50 miles on it already and loving every minute of it. My Dad has a hybrid and he use to leave me behind on my mountain bike. The roles have changed now. I will also keep that in mind about the shifters. Thanks for the kind words

  17. #17
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    Looks good buddy! Congrats! Now we just have to get you on some clipless pedals
    The most important thing is what God thinks about it. He will have the final say. Joshua Stinebrink

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    Kimo

  18. #18
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    How much would it cost to go clipless? Do the shoes fit any clipless pedals or do you buy a certain shoe for specific pedal?

  19. #19
    weirdo
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    Mmmmm... about 80 bucks? If I could find them, I`d send you all the clicky-click pedals that I took off most of my bikes when I went back to platforms or rat traps That would be even cheaper for ya. Try some clickies if you want (they do have their plusses), but don`t fall for the idea that it`s the only way to fly, especially on a commuter or other "around town" bike.

    The cleats usually come with the pedals and mount to pretty much any bike shoes. I think there`s a difference between road shoe systems and mountain systems, but I know that a lot of roadies use mountain shoes and pedals because road shoes are supposedly very walk unfriendly.
    Recalculating....

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by moonedzx9
    How much would it cost to go clipless? Do the shoes fit any clipless pedals or do you buy a certain shoe for specific pedal?
    depends... First of all what do you do for a living? Can you leave your work shoes @ work ? If you can I'd get a pair of specialized tahoe's and a pair of shimano 520's and you'll be set! The tahoes are about 60-85$ depends on where you get them. They are super comfy and don't look so "bike shoe" like so you can run errands and stuff with em. M520s are shimanos cheapest mountain pedal. And will work great! They run anywhere from 40-65$ depends where you get them. I am really partial to them especially for spinning on the road you can pull up on sprints and your control will get better! I use clipless on all my bikes trail, road ect! They take a little time to get used to but trust me when you like em you won't want to ride without em. Those cages you are riding with just scare me!
    The most important thing is what God thinks about it. He will have the final say. Joshua Stinebrink

    ____
    Kimo

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar
    Mmmmm... about 80 bucks? If I could find them, I`d send you all the clicky-click pedals that I took off most of my bikes when I went back to platforms or rat traps That would be even cheaper for ya. Try some clickies if you want (they do have their plusses), but don`t fall for the idea that it`s the only way to fly, especially on a commuter or other "around town" bike.

    The cleats usually come with the pedals and mount to pretty much any bike shoes. I think there`s a difference between road shoe systems and mountain systems, but I know that a lot of roadies use mountain shoes and pedals because road shoes are supposedly very walk unfriendly.
    There are Shimano SPD, the look clips. speed, and others. Most shoes will fit the different clips that come with the pedals. The mountain clips are recessed into the soles. I assume there is a thread in this forum somewhere about pedals and shoes? The road shoes are NOT for walking in, in fact you will ruin them.

    To deal with walking, I have Wellgo "Campus" pedals (Shimano makes these too, but for more money) which have two sides. There are plastic mountain bike toe clips and straps on one side which I hold flat with bungee cords (little ones) when not used, and spd clips on the other on the bike I put high miles on. The errand and short commute bike has my classic '70's Campagnolo 'rattrap' pedals with new toe clips and staps. Mostly I use the toe clips to position the balls of my feet and don't tighten the straps. Easy to dismount and no slide off the pedal for skinned shins on a hard launch.

    Shoes are a VERY personal issue. I have hyperextendible joints especially in my feet and hands. I bought Sidi (made in Italy) to stop the searing pain I got after 20 miles. They are the most comfortable shoes I currently own but at over $200, they are NOT cheap. They are actually cheap at twice that price as far as I'm concerned. They are reputed to last longer. I will see, but so far so good. Also no cow parts if that is important to you. Sidi has a less expensive and lower featured line at about half the Sidi price that are made in Hungary. These have improved in quality recently, and though not as good, defintiely a good quality for the price. I could not ride over 20 miles without the Sidis. YMMV. Oh, and the Sidis allow you to loosen them on the fly. This is important because our feet swell (20 mile mark for me) and your feet's blood flow is affected.

    The folks at www.rivbike.com are proponents of flat pedals (no clips or clipless) if you want their take. I love the control and attached feel of clipless pedals and shoes, second the placed feel of clips. You can always put a trunk on the rack for mocassins or deck shoes. I use a handlebar bag for that when I know I need to walk, but I want the Sidis to ride.

    You need to do what works for you.

  22. #22
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Because I just cannot live simply, I have three different pedal systems among my bikes.

    My commute bike just has old-style flat pedals with toe-clips. I get pretty close to the same power output of one of my clipless systems when I ride that bike in my running shoes, but I can wear any pair of shoes to ride.

    My mountain and 'cross bikes typically have Time ATACs. They're a mountain bike pedal system, and have walkable shoes. My road bike has a road pedal system with a large cleat. It makes walking quite awkward and it's easy to slip and fall. However, they're less hard on my flaky knees than other systems I've tried. I don't recommend road pedals unless there's a reason a mountain bike system won't work for you.

    My recommendation for a commute/utility/around town bike is to stick with old-fashioned pedals, like what you already have. I really like being able to ride it in whatever shoes I want to be wearing that day/wearing at work, etc. Bear in mind that I don't work the same place every day, so keeping a change of clothes and shoes at work isn't something I can do.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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