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Converting 80s racer to "commuting" bars/singlespe

sosidgesosidge Posts: 16
edited July 2008 in Commuting chat
Hoping I might get a little technical advice in here.

I have an 80s vintage Raleigh Record racer that I would like to convert to something a bit more suitable for city life - the main problem being the handlebars.

I had never ridden drops as a youngster and do not like them at all. These ones are narrow and the limited brake access (and in-need-of-an-overhaul brakes) make me pretty uncomfortable.

The frame and running gear overall is in very good condition, just needs a few new cables probably to be a solid commute/fitness bike.

Anyway, back to the point, ideally I would like some bars that are the same sort of height as the existing hoods position, and ideally I would like to change as few parts as possible (keep the same stem and ideally the brake levers too).

I have seen many pictures of the famous Nitto Moustache bar but it does not seem to be that easily available - is there something similar that is cheap and easy to find, or is there an even better bar out there that I should be investing in?

Oh, while I'm at it I may as well ask if anyone has a good recommendation for reliable singlespeed parts that may fit a racer like this, and what are good "higher profile" tyres, I'm thinking that 700x32c looks like a good width, 23c is jarring my coccyx over the ripples in the road.

Thanks.

Posts

  • meanwhilemeanwhile Posts: 392
    sosidge wrote:
    I have seen many pictures of the famous Nitto Moustache bar but it does not seem to be that easily available - is there something similar that is cheap and easy to find, or is there an even better bar out there that I should be investing in?.

    http://www.hubjub.co.uk/nitto/nitto.htm - Moustache bars should be back in shortly. Otherwise On One do something similar - it's either a Mary or a Mungo bar.

    I'm not sure if you'll be able to keep your old levers with any of these, you'll have to do some Net research.

    For tyres, I'd go for Conti Sports Contacts for speed, or Marathon Plus for absolute bomb proofing. For single speed advice, google "Sheldon Brown" and go to his site.
  • chewachewa Posts: 164
    I'm doing the same with an old Holdsworth Mistral frame.

    I ride drops all the time, but to remind me of my teen years I am thinking of turning the drops upside down, cutting them to make cowhorns (almost like old TT bars)
    plus je vois les hommes, plus j'admire les chiens

    Black 531c tourer
    FCN 7
    While dahn saff Dahon Speed 6 FCN 11!!!
    Also 1964 Flying Scot Continental
    1995 Cinelli Supercorsa (columbus slx)
    BTwin Rockrider 8.1
    Unicycle
    Couple of others!
  • GrantyBoyGrantyBoy Posts: 166
    Hmm, my old man has a racer from back in the day doing nothing. Was looking at a Spesh Langster but I now may do the same as you. Could be a good laugh!
  • sosidgesosidge Posts: 16
    What are the ethics of cutting down "period" handlebars on a "period" bike? Am I breaking some kind of rule about keeping stuff original if I do, or does the biking community not really mind if old bikes are customised?
  • sc999cssc999cs Posts: 596
    I personally think that bikes are just transport so customise away... :D

    Does the bike have 'ambulance' levers (a kind of second lever which allows you to operate the brakes from the top of the handle bars)? If it does ditch them because they are very weak compared to a single lever. It would also be worth while looking at getting some dual pivot calliper brakes to replace the single pivot brakes the bike most likely has at the moment.

    Steve C
    Steve C
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