New Guy with a (Don't Laugh) Walmart Bike

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I get the budget constraints. I've had a couple of bikes in pieces for years waiting for the right piece to become available in my price range. I'm fortunate enough to have enough bikes that I can still ride without these ones. I like to keep at least one in running condition at all times. I'm pondering selling a few things in order to get them back in circulation. Times are tough, ain't getting any easier
 
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OK Good-ish news.

Even though i am 90% sure I made a mistake with where i broke the chain at? Chain tension's correctly and the pin is still in that last link of the 'broken' section so THEORETICALLY I can put it back together. Additionally my redneck single speed gear works.

Bad news: I have to figure out a better way of keeping that gear in place because it wobbles side to side even with the spacers i have in place. Which messes with the chainline which causes chain to drop.

I had hoped to post a picture but the chain keeps dropping. So like.... I THINK I have the tension right so how do I check the chainline when I don't trust what I'm seeing?

Edit: Duh. I have a t-square. that is a VERY long straight edge. That should work. Will try that after things settle here so I can work without impacting other things.

So, it's gone better than I thought I'd do, but it isn't perfect.... yet i can make it work.

The amazing part about bikes. So long as the tires spin and the chain moves? 🚲
 
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Either i have fixed the chain drop issue, or I am closer than I have ever gotten to fixing it. there have been some concerning noises, but no actual drops... Yet. I haven't tried to stand and pedal yet though so it might still not be right. I'd done this by moving the chainring to the other side of the crank (was on the back now on the front.) Took the chainguard off because it kept getting in the way. Am annoyed at the back brakes. Will have to fiddle with them. Also because of the gear I picked for the experiment I have room in the back dropouts in case I want to move to a smaller gear.

The big downside is the rear brakes I think aren't right, hence why theyr'e disconnected in the photos.

Going to poke about marketplace to see if there's a cheap hub i can scavange. Because part of me wants to just run front rim, rear coaster.

But first going to take it to the loop when I can to test it out.
If it works? awesome. I'll get a 'proper' set of spacers, or a freewheel gear, or something. If not? Eh I can reconnect the chain bits i disconnected either by pushign that pin back in, or using another master link or just spend the money on a fresh chain when I get the other bits and bobs I want.

Point si I'm riding. NOW.

Gonna have to take more pictures because i only just now realized I didn't get a good shot of the chainline.

Any thoughts on if the chainguard should go back on or stay off?
 

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At this point using it mostly as a journal documenting my first bike in twenty years.

hoping i can get to properly test it soonish. I want to find out if this is a limpalong til I build back up, or a 'oh hey this is neat let's do something better than the redneck engineering right now.'

Though I do have to ask. @MattiThundrrr how big is the center hole in single speed gears? I'm... half tempted to just keep using the hub body as is, since I likely wouldh ave to have the rear wheel re-dished ifi got a 'real' BMX gear and I'm noticing from poking about proper single speed gears have longer teeth than what i'm using. Probably would have helped with the 'oh no it's a spacer width off' levels of misalignment i'd been having.

Also, rear brakes work. I'm unhappy given how lopsided they look, but I'm starting to suspect the frame itself was made for a single speed beach cruiser type bike and they sorta just slapped multi-speed everything on.
 
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I'm not sure what you are asking. Single speed gears are made to fit standard hubs, there's just one of them. Spacers placed on the either side are used to get the proper alignment, and cogs are available in many sizes (tooth count) for different gear ratios.
61QJCWVyyuL._AC_SX679_.jpg

HTB184aref6H8KJjSspmq6z2WXXaK.jpg
 
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Another thing which would help keeping the wheel straight with those forward dropouts would be something to lock the axle in place
zaQtK.jpg

Physically forces the axle to stay put, but wheel removal obviously becomes more difficult
 
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I'm not sure what you are asking.
Some pictures. Shown in one is an 'empty' freewheel spindle. Another is with one small one large gear on. Third is with with the gears side by side to compare next to an overhead shot of the freehub body.

And for bonus points. Shot of the bike as it now stands. Put the chain guard back on because I wear long pants constantly. Will likely take it off regardless of what i do for either paint, decal and clearcoat. If I do it will be when I take everything off the frame for regrease, recable, and dismantle., or whatever. So 'eh put it back on.' Did take the kickstand off and as it turns out that was the loudest source of rattle on my bike. didn't really use the thing as it's parked inside leaned against a wall so 'that's dead weight. Why have it?'

So far on just quick buzzing about and around the loss of gears doesn't feel bad. Still need to take it out on the big loop to see how it goes.
 

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You just keep finding the tough problems, don't you?
Eh I think it's just a difference between freewheels and free hubs. Annoying really but given normal people won't dismantle the things why bother with consistent spindle sizes?

Beat me trying to figure out how to move spacers about to move the axel about then redish the wheel without any sort of equipment. So far seems to be working.

Surprised more people haven't done this. Probably a reason for that.
 
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the difference is bigger
Indeed. I'm annoyed that all the single speed freewheels assume that the wheel is aligned for a straight chainline with a close to the wheel cog. I suppose for BMX that works.

Surprises me that there aren't screw on freewheel to single speed adaptors that gives that same spline that conversion kit cogs use.


Chain started sliding on me again so I redneck'd together a chain tensioner out of a ziptie tied to a now unused cable fastener and another ziptie around the chain. Since then I haven't had the chain fall off. It's slipped when pedaling but reengadges even while rolling through rutted field. I suspect those slips are due to the cog I'm using having short teeth intended for shifting gears rather than a single speed where it's supposed to hold onto the chain and keep it aligned.

Ah well that's the downside of redneck bodge solutions. they 'work' but won't work as well as the proper thing.

I do feel good about having made things work in spite of the difficulty. I even have spare cogs to swap out to with this setup.
 

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I looked in your area for bicycle repair classes but could find nothing close to your town. However I did find some online free bicycle maintenance video courses. If you have the time and inclination these would probably help you with the bicycle mods you are making. One such course was at https://alison.com/course/bicycle-maintenance . Hope this helps.
 
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This is what I love about this site. It's not about what you can buy it's about what you can build! The cheaper the better. The creativity is great
 
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Well I'm aggrivated because none of the existing spacers I've scavanged are giving a decent chainline. Chain keeps sliding off. On and on and it's an annoyance because i'm fumbling about when mostly I just want my bike to work.

I got myself in this I'll get myself out of it.

That said? Even though I do plan on getting stuff to make it a geared bike again? I do also plan on buying something that should make converting over simpler. Mostly because 'why not'

Heck. I know the threading on the hub could take the spare hub I have from the broke wheel to lowes to try matching to something and BUILD. Because at this point it's less about making the right thing amnd more 'defy will you?!'

All because I'm missing a ten buck run of shifter cable -_-. Then again Ten bucks may as well bea hundred right now given I have nothing I can spend that i won't regret.


I mean look at it. Looks like a pipe fitting out of the plumbing section.
 

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