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Converting a 26er mtb to a gravel bike?


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Removed all the parts off this old Silverback 26er that I found in my garage from my younger days. Already been sanding down the paint.

 

Then I thought, could I restore this bike into something simple in time? A gravel bike maybe?

 

Has anyone here done it? Looked at some things online and got some ideas, just not sure if the parts are readily available here in SA...

 

Some questions?

 

1. Has anyone converted a 26er MTB to a gravel toy, doesn't have to be anything beautiful but I'm just wanting to keep busy in the garage. I'll keep the paint stripped and go for the raw look.

 

2. Brakes. The bike still have V-brakes so need to probably make a plan to try and apply caliper brakes if possible.

 

3. Can I get rims and tyres that will fit the 26er frame?

 

I think most of the parts I have, the main parts I'll probably need are:

 

- Fork

- Brakes

- Rims and Tyres

- drop bars

- brakes/gear levers

 

Any input which can contribute would gladly be heard. 

 

Cheers!

 

post-135763-0-25602200-1586685045_thumb.jpg

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A pair of 700c or 29er wheels with 28/32c tyres has pretty much the same diameter/rolling circumference as 26er wheels with MTB tyres.

I did a similar build with a Spez 26er hardtail & it worked fine.

I did use a disc frame though - your problem is going to be the brakes - the rims of a 700c/29er rim won't align with your cantis. 

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As Montezuma says rim brakes could be tricky.

 

Me? I'd run 26" wheels with the narrowest MTB tyres I could find if it was just for fun ...

 

He might be able to fit some calipers on there - would be an interesting exercise

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Distance from mount point to rim is going to be the issue.

You can probably find some old long-reach calipers - someone onthe Hub would probably have a pair lying in a box/drawer collecting dust.

 

I actually have a fork that would work perfectly for you but lockdown an issue...

post-109-0-65274700-1586688178_thumb.jpg

Edited by montyzuma
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Hi chaps,

If you are going road shifters, you will have to:

1) Find a set of old centre-pull cantilever brake calipers. They are short pull and works perfectly with STI shifters. They will also fit your current V-Brake mounts.

2) FD must be replaced with a road FD because the pull ratio of road shifters are different to MTB shifters. This only applies to the front derailleurs. RD shift ratio's are the same for shimano road and MTB. The problem now is that the road FD's are bottom pull where the MTB's are top pull as is evident on your frame. I did a "McGuiver" with a pulley to do the pull direction switch.

Will try to upload images. If not, please send me your number so I can whatsapp you the photo's.

 

Christo

0837817772

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Hi chaps,

If you are going road shifters, you will have to:

1) Find a set of old centre-pull cantilever brake calipers. They are short pull and works perfectly with STI shifters. They will also fit your current V-Brake mounts.

2) FD must be replaced with a road FD because the pull ratio of road shifters are different to MTB shifters. This only applies to the front derailleurs. RD shift ratio's are the same for shimano road and MTB. The problem now is that the road FD's are bottom pull where the MTB's are top pull as is evident on your frame. I did a "McGuiver" with a pulley to do the pull direction switch.

Will try to upload images. If not, please send me your number so I can whatsapp you the photo's.

 

Christo

0837817772

Mmmmm

 

I use an MTB FD with my STI's no problem

 

RD pull ratios between road and mountain are not the same ... You can use a 9sp MTB RD with 9 or 10sp Road STI shifters

 

That's my experience

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Distance from mount point to rim is going to be the issue.

You can probably find some old long-reach calipers - someone onthe Hub would probably have a pair lying in a box/drawer collecting dust.

 

I actually have a fork that would work perfectly for you but lockdown an issue...

 

Great well let's chat after lockdown, thanks. Will ask around for the calipers for sure.

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RD pull ratios between road and mountain are not the same ... You can use a 9sp MTB RD with 9 or 10sp Road STI shifters

 

 

 

That is what making Sram 10 speed so nice and ahead of their time

Pull ratio 1:1 on both road and mtb

My monsterbike is build with a OX long cage read derailleur (36-11) and Red shifters

Shifting is 110%  :thumbup:

Edited by Mongoose!
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If you in jhb and I am still around after lockdown I can sort out that braking issue for you so you will run discs front and back.

 

I'm in CT I'm afraid, would like to know what you would have done? One option I read is to solder some disk brake mounts on the frame? Thanks for the offer.

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