This project really started with the intention of buying an old bike, a “beater” and seeing what I could do with it as a process of learning more about bicycles in general.
I hadn’t found what I wanted on Craigslist so I bought my first victim on e-bay for $150 or so dollar plus a bit for shipping.
The Pegasus is a 10 speed 1970-ish vintage touring bicycle. The frame and core components (Saddle, handlebars) appeared very solid and looked to make a great base for a new bike. As we talked about with the kids what we should do with it, the idea of a fixie came up rather quickly. It’s both a good and easy way to get started on wrenching. Then, we I asked my sons what color the fixie should be, they both answered purple. I’m not sure if they we joking or not but I thought it was a really good idea. So purple it is!
To prep the bike, I had to remove all the pain. The stripping process is a bit more involved than I thought and took more time than planned but once I found the right “Stripper” it moved along faster. My local hardware store was quite helpful in fact!
To fully prepare the bike, I had to sand it with sand paper. I started with rather coarse sand paper (200-300) and then moved all the way to 600 for very fine grain. I was quite happy with the result and to be honest, I almost considered leaving it just like that. It was a good looking frame!
First, the primer – that was the easy but important part. A few coats of primer are important to really avoid any rust and to keep the new paint job fresh. Remember to sand again the bike after the primer work is complete.
The frame took a bit longer since I wanted some parts of it black. As such, I had to take a while to cover the various “non-black” parts so that I could keep the pristine purple color.
Before the final coats of gloss across the frame, I applied the stickers for the new bike.
Putting it together
Before putting it together, I ordered a few things from Pure Fix Cycles. They have a lot of great components for Fixies which to this date haven’t fail. They also have very good customer service and responsiveness.
From them I ordered a set of wheels + tires, a chain, bar tape, pedals and a front brake.
I decided to keep everything else including the chainring. Although not optimal, the ring was a 42 so it was sufficiently ok for a Fixie and I ordered a 17 rear cog to keep an acceptable ratio. I wanted to keep a lot of authenticity for the bike and as such, it was important to keep the chain ring where possible (I completely removed the small ring of course).
I also fully cleaned the original bearings for the hub. Because of the crud within it, I had to go to my friends at the Montclair Bikery who helped me with a great cleaning product only bike shops seem to carry and voila! Good as new!
After a thorough taping job and lining up the breaks, the bike was finished.
I am quite pleased with the bike and how it turned out and I also learned a few things. Of course, I’ve spared a few details but as this bike was European, some of the measurements of nuts, bolts, bearings, fork width and others didn’t entirely align with current US standards which gave me a bit of a headache. But I was able to work through it all and I still get a lot of compliments on the bike when I ride around town.