Another odd question: If I were to look for an older FS bike to convert...- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Another odd question: If I were to look for an older FS bike to convert...

    Been doing SS for a minute now, and the idea of a FSSS keeps popping up in my mind. Been doing some reading, and there seems to be very mixed feelings across the MTBR community on these. I would really like to try it myself and see how I feel before I decide. No one around here has such a beast, so I'd like to get my hands on an older model to set it up with a Yess tensioner, or maybe just the derailleur, and have a go at it.

    Had a line on a Fisher on Craigslist, but it sold fast. Not surprised, given the price.

    Any recommendations on what too look for, or is it just a wait and hope game?

  2. #2
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    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  3. #3
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    If you want something cool and unique find a Haro Sonix Werxs 650B. It has a unified rear triangle so there is no chain growth when the suspension moves.

  4. #4
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    8 grand is not something I'm willing or able to experiment with. Sorry

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    If you want something cool and unique find a Haro Sonix Werxs 650B. It has a unified rear triangle so there is no chain growth when the suspension moves.
    I've read a lot about unified triangles in the last 24 hours. Seems like there are as many bad points as there are good. Specifically, when out of the saddle the suspension may not work as efficiently as it could. Not a good thing in a SS bike.

  6. #6
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    Will a small frame work? There's a good deal on a small Lenz Milk Money on Lacemine29

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by coke View Post
    Will a small frame work? There's a good deal on a small Lenz Milk Money on Lacemine29
    Not even close, but thanks for the heads up

  8. #8
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    Do you have a FS bike right now, geared or otherwise?

    If yes - find a gear suitable for your riding, and roll with that for a month. Evaluate.

    Did you like it? Explore further / buy a fat bike.

    Did you hate it? Buy a fat bike.

    If no - I can't be much help here probably, buy a fat bike. Or borrow a friend's to try the above?
    it's a challenge some of us are ultimately worthy of.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyriverag View Post
    Do you have a FS bike right now, geared or otherwise?

    If yes - find a gear suitable for your riding, and roll with that for a month. Evaluate.

    Did you like it? Explore further / buy a fat bike.

    Did you hate it? Buy a fat bike.

    If no - I can't be much help here probably, buy a fat bike. Or borrow a friend's to try the above?
    I've never owned a FS bike. If I did, I'd already be doing just what you recommend. Been thinking about a fat bike too, and probably will end up with one or a + bike at some point in the next couple years.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by praharin View Post
    8 grand is not something I'm willing or able to experiment with. Sorry
    well, you didn't mention a budget. anyway i was thinking used. $2k +/- like the one on lacemine29
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  11. #11
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    A fat bike and a full suspension are two completely different things. But anyway, I've been thinking about the same thing myself. There are a bazillion used FS bikes out there, especially with 26 inch wheels. Try it for yourself and if you don't like it just put the gears back on and sell it to someone else. I had a friend with an older Salsa FS bike that he converted to single speed with a tensioner. It worked fine but I think he had to mess around with it a bit to get the chain length right to make sure the tensioner could deal with the changes in relative chainstay length as the suspension compressed.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by praharin View Post
    I've never owned a FS bike. If I did, I'd already be doing just what you recommend. Been thinking about a fat bike too, and probably will end up with one or a + bike at some point in the next couple years.
    If you have chance - give fat a try. When I first tried Moonlander it was at the local bike show and Surly folks let me ride it around pavilion. I was hooked and started saving up. Was able to build it up 2 years later and Krampus quickly found it's way to my garage too. Mind you - I was never big fan of suspension, I don't have any bikes with even front suspension fork, rigid just feels right for me. But do I LOVE the cushion and traction of fatties!

    However you post intrigues me as I was thinking for a long time on how to convert my brother to SS. He has FS bike and would not let me close to try and convert it. I ended up building commuter for him with 6 speeds based on old Miyata frame and he loved it. He even admitted that he really is using one gear all the time. So I'd be very curious to see what you will come up with.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mongol777 View Post
    If you have chance - give fat a try. When I first tried Moonlander it was at the local bike show and Surly folks let me ride it around pavilion. I was hooked and started saving up. Was able to build it up 2 years later and Krampus quickly found it's way to my garage too. Mind you - I was never big fan of suspension, I don't have any bikes with even front suspension fork, rigid just feels right for me. But do I LOVE the cushion and traction of fatties!

    However you post intrigues me as I was thinking for a long time on how to convert my brother to SS. He has FS bike and would not let me close to try and convert it. I ended up building commuter for him with 6 speeds based on old Miyata frame and he loved it. He even admitted that he really is using one gear all the time. So I'd be very curious to see what you will come up with.
    I've never been a fan of suspension either, but I chalk that up to being a clydesdale/fat guy. I was planning to save money on a frame and get good suspension units made for a heavy rider. I've got a constant eye out for a good fat frame though. I'm just not sure if SS fat is a good idea. Those big tires look like they take some work to get moving, but with the Gravity offering, I can give it a try for fairly cheap and upgrade as needed... Too many bikes, never enough money!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by praharin View Post
    I've never been a fan of suspension either, but I chalk that up to being a clydesdale/fat guy. I was planning to save money on a frame and get good suspension units made for a heavy rider. I've got a constant eye out for a good fat frame though. I'm just not sure if SS fat is a good idea. Those big tires look like they take some work to get moving, but with the Gravity offering, I can give it a try for fairly cheap and upgrade as needed... Too many bikes, never enough money!
    Here is my story with fat SS:
    - My first Moonie build was FG, tried with 36, 33 and 30 in the front and 21 at the back, Bud and Lou. It was manageable but sucked in deep snow
    - I than tried 22x21, it was awesome in the deep snow, like a tank but spin out everywhere else. I don't mind spinning like crazy but it's no fun during winter
    - Switched to SS, 33x21, was not bad but not ideal
    - Bought Krampus - just what doctor ordered for SS. I run it 32x21 most of the time and sometimes 32x17 when it is mostly pavement/gravel
    - Couple of weeks ago I got Knards to use instead of Bud & Lou in the summer. By now I got gears on Moonie and even 60-80km rides were no problem, just pumped up B&L a bit more. Knards though (4.8) roll so nice I a thinking I will go back to SS

    So TLR - yes, fat takes more effort to spin but they keep rolling and if you go mid fat like 29+ or stay with 26 under 4 inches - SS is great.
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  15. #15
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    Do some investigation into the linkage design of the bikes you'll be looking at the following website(use a translator if your spanish sucks) Linkage Design. Usually as an SS rider your're in the 30s for a ring up front, but lots of suspensions suffer in pedal efficiency with front rings larger than 20s. Happened to me just going to 1x10 on a RIP9 32t front(probably dump the frame soon anyway), legs feel hammered after not even 2 hours where same ride on SS is no problem. Lenz have low efficiency but some like that for giving a certain feel climbing tech stuff.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by socal_jack View Post
    Usually as an SS rider your're in the 30s for a ring up front, but lots of suspensions suffer in pedal efficiency with front rings larger than 20s.
    That is odd. I always thought that if the ratio was the same, i.e. 36:18, 32:16, 24:12, then the efficiency would be the same. I'll have to read it later, I'm at work now. Thanks

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by praharin View Post
    That is odd. I always thought that if the ratio was the same, i.e. 36:18, 32:16, 24:12, then the efficiency would be the same. I'll have to read it later, I'm at work now. Thanks
    Yeah, apparently the suspension designers talk about a chainline in terms of the angle of the top chain run to the chainstay (as I take it) which is affected by ring size for many suspension designs. Generally looking at the data that blog has compiled on all the bike brands DW link comes out nicely, many VPP designs as well but not all, single pivots usually really bad but for something like DH have their advantages in some cases.

  18. #18
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    The best option would be a frame that has the main pivot concentric with the bottom bracket. Some Kona bikes have or had this(they even sold a SS FS bike for a bit). Some Lenz bikes also use this configuration. There are probably other as well.

    And yes, a unified rear triangle bike would work well too. I had a carbon Klein Mantra MANY years ago, never ran it SS though. I actually liked that the suspension would stiffen up when out of the saddle, made it feel more efficient. I was obviously the minority on that one!

  19. #19
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    Don't know what size you need, but this is about as good as it gets for a FSSS:

    2013 Lenz Sport MilkMoney 3.0 SS Frame For Sale

  20. #20
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    I tried a vintage FS as SS a while back. Was a fun ride.

    Tensioner gave me a a bit of slack to account for suspension movement...not sure if I ever pushed the limits of it though...I'm old and slow.


























    Steve

  21. #21
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    Catamount SL. 1st generation. Say 94-99. Aluminum frame. Horizontal drop outs. Probably the best URT ever produced. I built mine SS and rode it for a season. It was a riot.
    Zip ties? Not on my bike!

    Want:
    650B rims or wheel set. 80's vintage 32 or 36 x 135mm

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