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Monday, October 13, 2008

THE KLUNKER BIKE BUILD


Yes, yet another bike build is on the way. The good folks at ratrodbikes.com yelled "BIKE BUILD OFF" again and this time the theme is a Klunker bike. Klunker bikes were the genesis of the mountain bike back in the late 70's in Marin County California when a bunch of guys and gals decided to race old cruiser bikes downhill on a trail famously known as the Repack. It was called this because at the bottom of the hill, after every run, the coaster brake hubs had to be repacked with grease since they would smoke them out on the way down. The need for better brakes, multiple gears and the shrinking supply, not to talk about the limitations, of classic iron motivated the development of what we know today as the mountain bike.

I got my hands on this Klunker wannnabe from a friend for a mere $10 CDN. I had stashed it away for next season, but the build off requires me to get going now, so I figured I would take a chance and share with you guys at the same time. I plan on fixing this thing more than going for a full out rebuild and selling it on Craigslist as soon as possible.

What we have to work with here is not incredible. We are talking about a late 90's, chain store, klunker look alike. The diagnosis so far is grim. My main concern is the seized seat post. This problem could bring this project to an end if I can't pull it out. Thankfully it is a steel seat post inside a steel frame. Aluminum seat post in steel frames are a lot harder to get out when jammed. It will also require, at first glance, new brake calipers, cable and cable housings all around, shifters and pedals. That's for now until I put it on the workstand and do a more in debt autopsy of the beast.

So keep posted while I scrape my knuckles and curse myself to eternal damnation to finish this bike before Winter shows up it's true ugly face with a monster dump of snow. I'm sure it's going to be a blast.

Until next time, ride safe and Godspeed.

Gerry :)

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