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Frame swap

burtieburtie Posts: 154
edited March 2012 in Workshop
My trek 2.3 is I have found to big for me and I need to swap the frame for something smaller. How hard is this going to be for someone who has never done this before?

Posts

  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 25,701
    Assuming you have the tools for BB and headset... I'd say that the latter is the trickiest part. Then of course re-indexing the gears if you don't know how to do it...

    My feeling is that if you ask yourself this question, then probably you do need help. Where are you based?
  • burtieburtie Posts: 154
    I'm in lincolnshire, I suppose the really question is will everything fit from one frame to another?
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Simples - get new cables inners and outers and anything else that you know that you will need to replace (eg brake blocks) before you start so they are there ready you for as you go along.

    Firstly, clean old bike inside and out until it gleams as there is no point putting skanky things on a new frame.

    Put the bikes next to each other - as you undo one thing, after further cleaning and greasing/copperslipping move it straight onto the new frame: You'll be able to see exactly how it fits as you have just taken it off the old bike.

    As its your first time, don't go for wholesale changes all at once - do it one piece at a time, see how it fits and works and do it slowly: this way you'll do it properly and learn how it all works.

    Things like shifters: just leave them attached to the old bars and stem and move the whole thing across. Add/remove spacers as you see fit to compensate for different frame sizes.

    The chain is going to be the biggest hassle if it hasn't got a split link: just buy a chain splitter and take it from there. Bottom bracket and cranks may also require a trip to the LBS to have the old ones popped across or a new one fitted if you don't have the tools.

    As you take off the old outers, line them up against the new outers and cut to size then put the new outers and the new ferrules straight onto the new frame after greasing/copperslipping as necessary - this way you know that you have cut them to the right lengths. Thread the new cables through but don't snip them down and put on the cable ends until you everything adjusted so that it works.

    Grease/carbon paste the seat post and everything else, torque every bolt into place properly and there you job - jobbed.

    Use this as an opportunity to get rid of any rusted/rounded bolts, clean and grease up/replace the headset, change brake pads if necessary.

    Its very, very simple but like the most simple of things, done slowly and well very, very satisfying.

    Any problems, pop a post on here and someone will sort you out.

    HTH

    Y
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Oh - yes, it will all fit straight across assuming same size seat post/steerer/front mech clamp and that you don't need to go from long drop to short drop brakes. .
  • burtieburtie Posts: 154
    Ok you make it sound easy lol thanks for the help, well I'm going to order a planet x carbon road frame and fork next week for £400 unless I can pick up something second hand. got my eye on a tool kit too, that lot should chear the wife up. :mrgreen:
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Seriously - it really is simple: no offence, but it's a bicycle not a Moto GP/TT bike. One bolt for the seat post. Two bolts for the stem. One bolt for the rear mech, one bolt for the front mech hanger. One bolt for the head set preload adjuster. One bolt on each brake. And that is really about it.

    The tricky part is making sure that it all works lovely as opposed to just working - that's where time and a bit of experience come into it, but you'll pick it up as you go along.

    Get some carbon paste for the seat post and away you are. Remember to take all the chain ring bolts out, clean them, copperslip them up and pop them back in nice and tight.

    I've just built up a P/X ali frame as a fast trainer/summer commuter and can vouch for P/X service - have been faultless in every way. The frame rocks as well - utter bargain for the money.

    To save any hassle, I would suggest that you get them to fit the headset while they have the frame & forks (maybe a tenner?) and make sure that you get some barrel adjusters from them at the same time (I think that they are £2.50 each or something silly). They are also doing clearance deals on seat post clamps and mech clamps so worth getting these at he same time so they are the right size.

    Re tool kit - nah, don't bother. Head down to your local tool supplier (professional trade job or even a Halfords for their Professional range which is very good) - you'll need a selection of spanners (8mm to 19mm will cover everything you'll ever, ever need), some decent allen keys (I use Teng Tools T Bar ones), some decent cable snips, a couple of decent screwdrivers and some decent pliers. Don't forget a 2 - 12 Nm torque wrench! Sealey Draper/Machine Mart deals come in here but remember to ask for the deals - they won't offer them to you straight off as everyone has to make a living!.

    B & Q for a £1.99 small spirit level to check that your seat is level.

    I'd rather spend the money on decent basics as per the above rather than a tool kit with basic basics that will funk up plus some things that you'll never use - spoke keys made of cheese and that sort or malarky.

    As you go along and get more into it, then add the necessary (eg cassette removal tool, etc) to your tool kit.

    Get a decent tool box (Sealey Draper or Machine Mart do deals on tool chests with trays - general thing is buy a £100 tool chest and get £400 worth of tools for nothing - do a Google and see what you come up with) and keep it all in there - far, far better than a plastic tool box with no real space to expand your tool kit. Also means that you can have separate compartments for different things - eg one tray for spanners, one for allen keys, one for chain oils and for tyre related stuff, etc.

    If you need a hand with anything else, just pop a post on and we'll see what we can do.

    Go into it nice and slowly with a huuuuge mug of tea, take your time and enjoy - if something starts to play up then just take a step back, walk away and come back in 30 minutes: you'll generally find that this works wonders for making things fit! Remember: you're not doing Paris - Roubaix this weekend: there is no rush.

    Finally: don't force anything - if its clean and greased then it will all slide together nicely. Work from one end of the bike to the other, do everything up finger tight plus a nip then when you have finished get the torque wrench and do everything up properly. Any questions re torque settings give P/X a call.
  • burtieburtie Posts: 154
    Well thank you very much for all your advice, I'll be back for more i'm sure thanks.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 25,701
    It's only simple if you've done it before, otherwise you will put too much load on the crack arm and destry the bearing... you might tighten bolts too much and crack carbon parts, bend gear cables and make them sticky, not tighten brake bolts enough and die on a descent, not tighten the headset enough and go down in another descent...
    It's not as simple as it looks, otherwise nobody would pay a meachanic to do it.
    If you've never done it, starting from a full rebuild can be a bit overwhelming
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Nothing like building his confidence, eh ....

    Seriously - its a bicycle. It's not difficult. Just don't go at it mash handed (ie don't tighten bolts too much and use a torque wrench, use logic in the way you are routing cables, make sure the brakes are tight to the frame/forks if the headset has play in it at a standstill then tighten it half a turn until it doesn't, etc).

    A lot of this stuff is just about having the confidence to do it - there are only about 8 bolts on the whole bike.

    If you do it and you're not sure that its good enough, ask a LBS to have a look - it'll cost a tenner and put your mind at ease.

    If we were all so scared in doing anything in the first we'd never do nowt.

    But seriously - its simple.

    People tend to take stuff to mechanics because a) they can't be bothered b) they are too lazy c) they admit that they do not have any idea at all d) they don't have the time.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 25,701
    Yossie wrote:
    Nothing like building his confidence, eh ....

    Seriously - its a bicycle. It's not difficult. Just don't go at it mash handed (ie don't tighten bolts too much and use a torque wrench, use logic in the way you are routing cables, make sure the brakes are tight to the frame/forks if the headset has play in it at a standstill then tighten it half a turn until it doesn't, etc).

    A lot of this stuff is just about having the confidence to do it - there are only about 8 bolts on the whole bike.

    If you do it and you're not sure that its good enough, ask a LBS to have a look - it'll cost a tenner and put your mind at ease.

    If we were all so scared in doing anything in the first we'd never do nowt.

    But seriously - its simple.

    People tend to take stuff to mechanics because a) they can't be bothered b) they are too lazy c) they admit that they do not have any idea at all d) they don't have the time.

    So you're saying that cytech 2 is a waste of time and money.... I often think so, but qualified mechanics get very edgy if you say that... they think they're worth the £ 40 an hour they charge.
    Seriously, it's all down to whether one has a "mechanical mind" or not... if not, better left to the professionals. It's all pretty simple, but it's also very easy to do it wrong
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Cytech isn't a waste of money if your career depends on it but at the same time I'm sure that Jerry Burgess doesn't work at my local Ford garage ……..

    Remember - all the qualifications in the world can't make you a good [insert job here]. I'm surrounded by people every day who are qualified up to the hilt in what we do and boy, can they be so shocking that you just have to shake your head and walk away and hide somewhere safe from them.

    How many stories have we heard of appallingly dangerous bicycle repairs carried out by "technicians" at the local LBS?

    Agree re mechanical mind, but come on, lets not knock Burtie before he's started - if he starts and finds its too much, then fine, call a mate or take it to the LBS (or even back to Planet X who may even do the build for him for a charge) but personally I feel we should faith in the guy - for all we know he's the next Obree. Or someone else who is really good at building bicycles.

    Burtie - carpe diem my son - and well done for giving it a go. Just remember - slowly slowly catchee monkey and don't be worried to ask any questions.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 25,701
    When I built my first set of wheels I was terrified to ride them... so I went down a 50 mph hill... after that I was pretty confident

    Yes, have a go... worst that can happen... oh, let's not think about it
  • styxdstyxd Posts: 3,234
    it's all down to whether one has a "mechanical mind" or not...

    I think this is what it comes down to. The fact the OP is asking the question in the first place suggests to me they may struggle. Someone mechanically minded would have just cracked on and started the build already.

    The parktools website is a good source of information.
  • tim wandtim wand Posts: 2,945
    Where abouts are you in Lincolnshire. I live in Newark on Trent and have built lots of bikes up from frames, especially Planet X' s.

    planetx2009002.th.jpg

    (p.s Once position was finalised I did sort the spacers on the steerer and the sensor positon )

    I am currently un employed and missing this simple pleasure in life, and would gladly lend you my time and my tools if you want to come to Newark, to give you a hand and some guidance for free.
  • Yossie wrote:
    Cytech isn't a waste of money if your career depends on it but at the same time I'm sure that Jerry Burgess doesn't work at my local Ford garage ……..

    Remember - all the qualifications in the world can't make you a good [insert job here]. I'm surrounded by people every day who are qualified up to the hilt in what we do and boy, can they be so shocking that you just have to shake your head and walk away and hide somewhere safe from them.

    How many stories have we heard of appallingly dangerous bicycle repairs carried out by "technicians" at the local LBS?

    Agree re mechanical mind, but come on, lets not knock Burtie before he's started - if he starts and finds its too much, then fine, call a mate or take it to the LBS (or even back to Planet X who may even do the build for him for a charge) but personally I feel we should faith in the guy - for all we know he's the next Obree. Or someone else who is really good at building bicycles.

    Burtie - carpe diem my son - and well done for giving it a go. Just remember - slowly slowly catchee monkey and don't be worried to ask any questions.

    +1 good to encourage him to have a go but what should he do with the old outers and broken bits etc. :D
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    Give it a go but probably get P/X to fit headset, , whilst I`ve done headset fits myself, using home made clamps / wood it will be far better to get expert fitting there, it is IMO most difficult of all things on building up.

    You may find old BB cups stiff / seized up, this may need LBS help.

    When fitting BB cups to new frame take great care not to cross thread :( , grease threads thoroughly and just fingertighten to start with, should get several turns in before needing tool; don`t use a tool from start as is a way to accidentally cros thread.

    You may be able to use gear / brake cables + outers as they are, some frames the outers can be removed from stops which have a slot cut in them, try it and see. If you have to fit new outers and inners make sure you have a very good set cable cutters to get a sharp clean cut; keep old outers to roughly size up new ones if required, ie use to do mock up cable run from bars shufters to frame stops poistions.

    Measure up all key items ie saddle >BB height, saddle angle tilt , distance saddle nose behind BB (if both frames have same seat angle no adjustment needed here), saddle nose > centre bars, saddle nose / bar height drop.

    Use a torque wrench, or Ritchey 4mm torq key for seatclamp bolt, and all bolts on bar stem and handlebars, very important to not exceed maxm (with experience you can judge torque on an allen key though)

    Dismantle bit by bit, leave wheels in to last especially leave wheels in when removing BB as large amount force may be required to remove and finally tighten (not good to do in a frame workastand)

    Allow plenty working space

    I`ve done several frame > frame kit transfers, MTB and road, allow at least 3 hours and enjoy and learn :)

    You`ll learn a lot and feel mush more confident about bike maintenance for future tasks
  • YossieYossie Posts: 2,600
    Nah - new inners and outers for that lush new inner and outer change/braking feeling together with the spotlessly clean dried and freshly oiled chain. No point in having a lovely new frame with new headset and b/b and everything all lush and smooth and slick and nice only to find that it doesn't change gear because you scrimped on £15 worth of inners and outers .......

    If you aren't sure on the length of the new outers before you cut them, leave them longer than you think rather than shorter - you can always take off but can't put back on.

    I'd say for a first time leave it a lovely long weekend of drinking espresso, cleaning bits, drinking espresso, taking bits off, drinking espresso, looking, greasing, fettling, standing back, drinking espresso and giggling in excitement and caffeine overdose - enjoy it to the full, no need to rush.

    Remember those little clear patches to put under the cables to stop them scratching the frame.

    Then dump all the old shyyyyt in next door's garden :)
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    Nah - new inners and outers for that lush new inner and outer change/braking feeling together with the spotlessly clean dried and freshly oiled chain

    Agree :) , but felt that if can transfer cables intact it makes job easier (replacing outers and inners can be a bit of a pain / fiddle I`ve found :( ) + saves money (inners, outers, bar tape too, reckon nearly £40 there..) and then next job would be new set cables etc after bike has been bedded in :) , nice and new for the summer !

    + if old Trek has only seen a few miles because `too big` then cables may be in vgc overall still
  • CHRISNOIRCHRISNOIR Posts: 1,400
    As someone in a very similar situation (albeit involving a cracked seat-stay) I've been reading this thread with interest. Keep us posted, Burtie!
  • Yossie wrote:
    Then dump all the old shyyyyt in next door's garden :)

    Ahh ... that's better :D (thought you had reformed and was worried next door's thriving scrap trade would be the next British company to fold!).
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