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plan of attack: upgrading in order


I just moved for school and picked up a new bike off craigslist. I used to ride a lot when I lived in the bay, but it was mostly a transportation thing. Recently though I've gotten back into riding fixed and am looking to start getting a bit more involved.

So here's the question. I don't make a ton of money, but would like to slowly upgrade my bike, paycheck to paycheck. Is there a specific order that you would recommend I upgrade parts?

I was thinking of upgrading the chainring > cranks > bb > handlebars > hubs > wheels, in that order, then upgrading to a more legitimate track frame after checking out the drome and spending a lot of time on the bike. Does this sound like a good approach? Any feedback, personal stories, whatever, would be appreciated!
December 16, 2013 12:36 AM
From: Portland, OR
67 posts
1 bike
I would start with all contact points first (bars, saddle, pedals, tires).
Make yourself comfortable first. Also, no point in upgrading hubs and then wheelset, and you can just wait for a good deal on a decent wheelset to pop up.
What's a decent wheelset you ask?
There's a butt load of threads with these same questions.
Don't be shy to look around. :)
December 16, 2013 12:50 AM
From: Los Angeles, CA
999 posts
15 bikes
Depends on the bike. Depends on the use of it. Sometimes you're better off riding what you got until it's time to upgrade. Giving you the time to buy something really nice.
December 16, 2013 01:32 PM
From: Ottawa, ON Canada
816 posts
22 bikes
Buy nice, don't buy twice.
December 23, 2013 07:33 PM
From: Los Angeles, CA
139 posts
5 bikes
I say always upgrade the pedals/straps first cause good foot retention is really really important imo. Then after that upgrade the drivetrain (cranks/chainring, bottom bracket, chain), then cockpit, then wheels.
December 23, 2013 07:51 PM
From: San Mateo (SF Bay Area)
315 posts
3 bikes
If I were you, I would upgrade the contacting point such as handlebar,saddle, and pedal.

Always make yourself comfortable first
December 23, 2013 11:29 PM
You basically have to decide what's most important to you at the time you're ready to upgrade, comfort (saddle, bars, stem, pedals/retention, and anything fit related), or response (tires, wheelset, cranks, bb, and headset, even the frame) and of course these play into each other a little bit too. I'd say comfort is most important at first, you could have the fastest most responsive setup on the streets but if it isn't comfortable you won't want to go ride.
December 24, 2013 02:35 AM
From: Chicago, IL, United States
210 posts
11 bikes
If you have to, you could overnight parts from Japan.
January 2, 2014 02:32 AM
Glad im not the only one who trys to quote The fast and the furious everyday.
January 2, 2014 04:20 AM
From: San Jose, California
58 posts
2 bikes
Another vote for contact points. A good saddle and fresh bar tape/comfortable bars go a long way to keep you happy on the saddle.

January 27, 2014 12:42 AM
cranks > wheels > bb

it doesn't have to be in that order but those are things that you should buy first.
January 27, 2014 10:42 PM
first thing: derailleur
January 28, 2014 06:55 AM
From: San Diego, CA
780 posts
9 bikes
^ gonna be pretty unnecessary when there's no derailleur hanger!
January 28, 2014 02:55 PM
From: Los Angeles, CA
999 posts
15 bikes
Cockpit/contact points: make it fit, make it comfortable. Next: tires! Nice tires will change your life. Veloflex, Challenge, etc. Hand-made tubs or clinchers. Next, wheels.
February 3, 2014 08:35 PM
From: MKE WI
36 posts
15 bikes

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