Quickdirt.com’s Garage Bike Project – My Off-Season Challenge

I don’t know about you, but over the years I have amassed quite a collection of bike parts.  There is a bunch of stuff in my garage that I am probably never going to use, but still seems too good to throw away.  Well, that is, I DID have a big bike parts collection until I gave a lot of them away to a riding buddy earlier this year.

But this old pile of parts got me thinking…  somewhere in the garages around me there is a perfectly good bike disassembled and spread across the city of Columbus.  My mission this winter is track down some of those components and try to assemble them into a cool bike.

Do you want to help me?  Or, do you think I am crazy?  Do you think I can pull it off?  If I do, will the bike be fun to ride?

Please pass this on to your friends who have an interest in bikes – especially the ones with large collections of bikes and parts in their garages or basements! 🙂

The Quickdirt.com Garage Bike Project

Click on the image to get a more detailed look. This is my dream bike. Obviously, I am going to be flexible and bend my ideas to what is available.

The Rules

There are a couple of parameters to the project.

  1. I am looking for lightly used parts.  Let’s say you bought a new bike and decided to upgrade the brakes from mechanical to hydraulic right away.  Your lightly used mechanical disc brakes that are collecting dust would be perfect for this.
  2. This is a community project – I want to try and get a lot of people involved – maybe even have a beer or two while we brainstorm by your work bench.  I would love people’s ideas and suggestions to help me build a better bike.  I’m going to need help from the guys with good wrenching skills.  When the bike is finished, I want to paint the name or initials of everyone who helped on the frame of the bike.  (If I can find someone to donate some paint.)
  3. I can’t pay for any of the parts.  Nothing.  It would too easy to just go to the store and start buying things.  That wouldn’t be much of a project.  I have to scrounge them out of the garages of bikers around Columbus, Ohio.  However, I’m open to a bike shop sponsoring a part or two and I’d be happy to paint the shop name on the frame.
  4. I will keep people updated about the progress of the project on Facebook and here on Quickdirt.com.
  5. When the bike is finished I will use it for an epic bike ride next spring to celebrate – possibly across the state of Ohio.  I’m hoping I can get some of my fellow bike builders to ride with me.  Who is in for an adventure?

The Bike

My goal is to build a road bike version of my mountain bike.  I want to build a bike that is mechanically simple, that I can fix and maintain myself.  Rugged, flexible and reliable would be three good words to describe what I am going for.

Two bikes that are inspiring the project are the Surly Disc Trucker and Surly Ogre.  I like these bikes because they have disc brakes and can be used for bike touring.  I know that the hardest part of this project is to locate a potential frame.  Obviously, I’m going to need to be flexible since I’m trying to do this for free.  However, if you have a frame with disc brake mounts and longer chain stays for foot clearance that would fit a 5’10 man with a 31″ inseam, then you would be my hero.  Obviously, if I can’t find a frame then this project will die pretty quickly.

I never ride in the drops, so I am looking for flat handlebars with no drops, but I am also open to the “long horn”-style of bars as well.  However, I think those would be harder to find brakes and shifters for.

I switched to a 1×10 set-up on mountain bike two years ago and I love it.  Most likely, I will never have a front derailluer again.  I’m looking to do a 1x set-up on this bike, but I’m thinking I’m going to need a chain guide because most people don’t have an extra SRAM XX1 set-up lying around in their basement.  I’m open to suggestions on what the best way to pull this off.

I’m definitely interested in disc brakes.  I’ve grown tired of rim brakes that rub or become ineffective if the wheel goes out of true.  Disc brakes are king and I think they should be on every bike these days.

What else should I be thinking about?  What recommendations do you have for building up a bike?

Parts List – updated 11/7/2014

I’ll try to keep these lists updated as I find and obtain new parts.

What I Already Have:

What I Need – (remember, I can be flexible):

  • Frame – with disc brake mounts
  • Fork – with disc brake mounts
  • Headset
  • Rear derailleur
  • Chain Guide for front chain ring
  • Brakes – AVID BB7 mechanical disc brakes or similar
  • Brake Levers
  • Shifters – rear only.
  • Headset
  • Cable guide
  • derailleur cable
  • 2 x brake brakes
  • 4′ derailleur housing
  • 4′ brake housing
  • cranks
  • bottom bracket
  • flat pedals or Crank Brothers Egg Beaters
  • cassette
  • chain
  • seat post
  • seat – similar to Specialized Format 143mm
  • seat clamp – no quick release
  • stem
  • handlebars
  • tubes (I might have these, I need to inventory my collection of tubes.)

Please pass this list on to your friends who might have some of these parts.

6 thoughts on “Quickdirt.com’s Garage Bike Project – My Off-Season Challenge

  1. Have disc brakes (barely used avid elixer trail hydros) for you-looking for gently used or new camelbak/ 31.8 stem and/or unused beer in return. You do not need to paint my name on your half breed bike.

  2. I assume your wheels are 29″ but if they’re 26 inch, I have a decent GF 21″ Marlin frame (with headset and BB, I think) that’s collecting dust in my attic. I’d be happy to part with it temporarily (meaning several years) as it has some sentimental value. This journey would add to that sentiment. 🙂

  3. Pingback: Garage Bike Project Update – December 2014 | Quickdirt

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