A current side project of mine is reworking my old Giant Boulder 550 ’90s model MTB. This bike was found as a dumped frameset a couple of years ago and has become the bike that gets all the cast-off bits from my other ones as they are upgraded, as well as various new bits and salvaged old parts .
I overcame my partial dislike of mountain bikes by fitting different handlebars to it as flat bars are really hard on my wrists. I really feel that a swept back bar “holds” the same way your wrists relax when held at your side.
Other than that MTBs can make fine all-rounders, though I only like old steel ones with horizontal top tubes ( what a snob, you say ! ).
Especially purple ones!
These narrow Velo Orange Belleville “no-rise” bars should work for me because the large (61cm) frame size means that I can keep the bars high enough relative to the seat, and the swept back grips keep me a little more upright. They also give the bike a sort of old-fashioned “sporty” look along with the high frame and “small” 26 inch wheels.
Thinking about what I don’t have in my collection of bikes, I decided to give this one a really low bottom gear of 1:1 for when I feel the need to easily climb the steep local grades. So, on went a Sakae triple front ring from a salvaged Apollo (48/38/28) along with a 5-speed cluster and a recycled front derailleur.
A fifteen speed triple is enough for a wide range, and close ratios are not really necessary here.
The original 7-speed rear derailleur was stop-adjusted to fit the 5-speed cluster and a new friction front/indexed rear Shimano stem shifter from Vintage Bicycle Rebuilds added ( I have developed a fondness for stem shifters via my Road King rebuild ). It’s a 6-speed click so the first click (top) is a “dummy”
I also had to re-fit a cantilever front brake as the v-brake wouldn’t clear the front guard – a fiddly job …
The wheels are from another chuck-out, and the guards another again, and so there are at least 4 or 5 bikes contributing here ! The art of recycling …
It’s not really rideable properly yet, and definitely cosmetically unfinished, but hopefully gives an idea of what you can do to customise that unloved old wreck in your garage.
If I have enough time, I would like to make a home-made wooden front rack for it … hang on, did I say enough time …. ?
I’m dreaming, aren’t I ?