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Old 12-18-2012, 02:09 AM   #1
syrgrad91
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Single-speed wheel and chain issue

Hey folks, I'm wrapping up my first single-speed project and I have a question. I took a mid-80's Peugeot Iseran frame and built a pretty nice single-speed out of it. I'm running 700c wheels and swapped out the 8-speed cassette for spacers and a 16T cog. So far so good. The problem is trying to get the rear wheel centered and keep good tension on it and I'm having a dickens of a time. I've seen some bikes with screws drilled into the rear of the dropout that seem to help with alignment and setting proper tension on the rear wheel, however, my bike does not have a provision for that. I've also seen the Surly Tuggnaut, however that's really designed for use with track frames. Any thoughts or suggestions would be helpful. As a point of additional info, I have quick-release skewers on it at the moment and have been debating swapping to a solid rear axle (it's going to stay QR on the front to make it easier to lock up the bike).



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Old 12-18-2012, 02:35 AM   #2
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My friend that built his own SS used a piece of PVC for his spacer and just painted it. It was more functional to him to get things to line up more precise than trying all sorts of spacers. All he had to do is cut, file , sand, and paint.

Also if your no longer using a deraileur you may need to take a spacer out of your drive side's BB if your BB has spacers on each side. This allows the chain to line up a little better.

Just throwing that info out there for ya. I do like the spacer you have though! It's very classy!

Also have you tried a shorter chain or maybe doing a half link shorter?



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Old 12-18-2012, 02:45 AM   #3
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Shop around, and you'll find some chain tugs that will do the trick, even with your dropouts. Switching to a nutted rear axle will help. Search eBay cycling for "tensioner".

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Old 12-18-2012, 04:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rynoman03 View Post
My friend that built his own SS used a piece of PVC for his spacer and just painted it. It was more functional to him to get things to line up more precise than trying all sorts of spacers. All he had to do is cut, file , sand, and paint.
Nice! I wonder how safe and/or durable that is. Still, I might try that on my next SS bike build.

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Also if your no longer using a deraileur you may need to take a spacer out of your drive side's BB if your BB has spacers on each side. This allows the chain to line up a little better.
Yeah, no spacers on the bottom bracket.

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Just throwing that info out there for ya. I do like the spacer you have though! It's very classy!
Thanks! Just stacked a bunch of aluminum spaces I picked up at a local bike shop. (the first one is anodized black, the rest are unfinished aluminum). They're really nice because they are notched to seat properly on the cassette hub.

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Also have you tried a shorter chain or maybe doing a half link shorter?
The chain lines up perfectly, and the chain length seems to be okay, it's just a matter of getting the rear wheel to sit evenly and taught in the rear dropouts. As long as the wheel is in there straight, then the chain is straight and it all works fine.
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Old 12-23-2012, 12:58 AM   #5
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those spacers do look very nice. i thought you bought some kind of special deal to fill in that space, not just stacked up some stuff form the shop, it looks pro

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Old 12-23-2012, 05:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
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those spacers do look very nice. i thought you bought some kind of special deal to fill in that space, not just stacked up some stuff form the shop, it looks pro
Thanks! I tried to keep it clean. I thought about buying a spacer kit, but this option was less expensive and looks just as nice. I originally considered using spacers from various old cassettes, but that looked sloppy and didn't fit quite right, so instead I checked with the local bike shop and they had these instead.
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:40 AM   #7
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think about nuts

One of the best ways to make sure your chain is aligned is to have a solid rear axle with nuts on both ends. Then you can tighten down the non-drive side first. this will allow you better placement for the rearwheel and also gives you a better handle on chain tension.If you do this you don't really need any other hardware. I have in riding fixed gear bikes for years and i've never needed any pullback type adjuster on any of my bikes.

If you go this way. one thing you're going to have to carry with you though. and that'll be a 15 mm wrench or something that'll do the job. I have a medium-sized crescent wrench that I cut the handle off and rounded it and tapped it so that it could fold up and fit in my pocket.

Mike Frye A.K.A. Frye Bikes

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Old 12-26-2012, 12:22 PM   #8
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There are a lot of options out there. The best design has an offset head so you won't mar the paint finish.

http://www.google.com/search?q=fixed+gear+15mm+wrench&hl=en&safe=off&cli ent=safari&tbo=d&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=L_na ULW_E8_y0QHx9IGIDg&ved=0CAYQ_AUoAQ&biw=1024&bih=67 2

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Old 12-27-2012, 07:25 AM   #9
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if you use a good set of washers you don't have to worry about your paint (mines still OK at the drop outs after twenty years, the frame needs help though) The Idea is you don't need to put that much torque on your rear hub and it will still be there.

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Old 12-27-2012, 11:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by retromike3 View Post
if you use a good set of washers you don't have to worry about your paint (mines still OK at the drop outs after twenty years, the frame needs help though) The Idea is you don't need to put that much torque on your rear hub and it will still be there.
I'm talking about the paint at the fork. The rear dropouts are flat. The fork, mine anyway, is shaped such that a flat wrench, fully seated, will nick the paint. YMMV.


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