First build - let me steal your know-how

So I finally got around to collecting the free frame that I am going to build into my commuter. I am going to (regularly) ask a bunch of questions in this thread until the build is done. I hope someone can help, I will say thanks a lot.

Notes: I live in BNE and the bike is a Repco Superlite + parts, so it is from yesteryear.

  1. Can anyone give me a good description or pictures of what superficial rust is and the best ways to get rid of it? (steel wool?) The frame itself doesn’t have any rust on it, just components, like the cranks, have a few brown flecks which are obvious because of their silver colour.

1A. (Noob question) How worried should I be about rust on the inside? Anything I can do?

  1. The headset looks screwed. It is super rusty. Am I right in assuming it will be 1 inch threaded?

  2. Recommend an average, reliable threaded 1 inch headsets? And while your at it where to get quill stems for reasonable money?

  3. Should I throw away things like handlebars in case they have been crashed or are these things seriously over-engineered to the point where I can clean them up and be happy?

  4. The cranks that were on the bike are labelled “Sugino MP 110” and are for 2 chainrings, is there any problems with me using them with a single chain ring?

  5. Anyone know the seatpost size for the Repco Superlite?

I am sure I will have more questions, all I have done so far is take all the components off.



Can you post some pictures at all? They will help a lot. Some quick replys so far though…

  1. if its just on the surface it will prob be fine. if the actual metal is coming away, bad
    1a. not very if its not too old
  2. more than likely
  3. shimano stx. $20, steel cups and cartridge bearings = awesome
  4. will probably be fine unless visibly fucked then replace, you can get new ones cheap
  5. no problem with shorter bolts but check your chainline
  6. 27.0 maybe? cant remember.

all i’ve got:

  1. mine is 26.8: common as dirt…

Thanks for that spud & hm. Pictures will come, I am home tomorrow so will take some.

Follow up to Q1: If it is just some surface rust, how do I remove it?

Follow up to Q3: Is the Shimano STX headset $20 online or is that LBS retail?

Cheers again,


Q1b; steel wool works ok
Q3b; about that at a shop. dont pay more than 30.

OK here’s some pics of some problem areas. I am basically looking for advice along the lines of…

a) “Thats OK, fix like this…”
b) “Thats buggered, find a new bike”
c)“Thats buggered but you can replace it”
d) something I have missed. Thanks

There are several of these small indents with rust in them

Same thing but on TT

How do i remove this speckled stuff?

Is this headset buggered?

Cheers for any help, if you need more pics its not a problem.


I’m not liking the looks of that 2nd picture. Normally, little dents and rust spots are OK. But the paint around those rust spots in the 2nd picture looks weird. It could be:

  1. The picture is not very clear.
  2. The frame wasn’t painted very well in the first place.
  3. Something bad is happening under that paint.

Blakey or DaFrog will know better.


Just as a follow up to picture 2,

The marks on the furthest right of the pic are scratches, but the line on the left most part of the pic is a rib, like a vein in your arm, and there are a couple of these on the TT.



Looks like cracks in the clear coat…

pm sent

Just a follow up to picture 2.

OK, so assuming the frame is good to go I need some advice on the following items.

Basically any brand or item you can suggest, any relevant opinion or anywhere to get this stuff from.

  • Brake Calliper/s
  • Brake Lever (I am going to use the drops that came with the frame for a while, so hoods eneded)
  • Seat Post
  • Bolts (Lots of the bolts have rust issues, where do I get replacements?)
  • Chain
  • Cog
  • Wheels (I was thinking Flip-Flop and a good quality so I can re-use or on-sell)
  • Chain-ring
  • Pedals

Re: Gearing I was going to looke at starting around 70"?

Once again thanks for any replies.


Sorry for butting in here but you seem to be getting ahead of yourself.

Reply I would suggest

  1. Read the appopriate pages from Sheldon Brown (RIP) and read them again.

  2. Wash the bike

  3. Start dismantling everything.

  4. Stay organised with parts kept in separate bags, boxes ,jars, extra and everything labeled or keep notes and pictures (really helps with assemblely)

  5. During dismantling most of the questions you are asking will be answered or you will develop a better idea of what you need, what is rooted and what is not.

Every rebuild is different and the first step is to really find what you have.
I live within a hundred km of brisbane so may be able to lend a hand


Thanks for reply.

I have disassembled and the list above is what I need. I may have jumped the gun on assuming the frame is OK to go, but I figured a picture on the internet isn’t going to be able to solve that problem.

So to follow up, everything is now clean (I took the pics before cleaning cause I wanted to get them up here). I even steel-wooled the headset back to life.

I will probably run with the BB until it dies. The cranks go in circles and that’s all that matters for the moment. And I am pretty sure I will need a longer stem, but I will get the thing running first!

Cheers again,


regards that top tube rust and the bubling under the paint, I’ve done up a few rust buckets and if I was you I’d strip the area so you can inspect it properly. If you were going to paint it anyway then that shouldn’t be a problem, if not then it’s worth doing anyway. As for rust inside, if it is bad then it could cause problems later, all you can do is clean it out best you can and treat it eg, fish oil. Should stop the rust but won’t stop the old rust damage causing future cracks.

Your in Bris and doing up an old bike then the place to go is to Revolution Cycles at West end. They often have some nice 2nd hand stuff for sale and because they recycle and sell old bikes themselves that have cheap bits and pieces for the job. Your list doesn’t have cables and brake pads on it but i would add them.

most old stuff can be brought back to life the help of a few items… clean it with a degreaser (stuff from a can, kero, WD40 all work), and lots of rags, and those green scourers that don’t scratch mutch.

when it’s clean you can see if it will still function (not rusted together or pitted beyond repair)
If you are going to reuse it get the corrosion off and polish it up so it looks as nice as possible. scourers, wet and dry, solvol metal polish, mag wheel cleaning stuff (cloth wadding impregnated with polish) rags, and aluminium foil (polish damaged chrome with solvol and foil, magic happens)
rusty bolts list clean off the rust , lube and reuse.
grease and lube is your friend.
get new bearings if you need them from bike shop…

And buy a good fixed wheel, street bikes take some beating, can get buy with cleaning up an old front QR wheel if $ is a problem.
Get a velocity or try emailing Dan at Shifter. The wheel I bought off him has done three years of commuting everyday and just needed it’s first attention with the spoke key.

have fun

I’d suggest going into Ridgeways on Stafford rd. Just don’t go in on a Tuesday, ask for Paul he knows his stuff and is always really helpful. Bike Rev in Westend is a pain in the arse and not really that good unless you get someone who is willing to give you more than a grunt. If Ridgeways doesn’t have what you need I’d be very surprised they have the walls lined with boxes of old parts.

yes ridgeways will have stuff too, and some secondhand bits but you can spend all day in there while they um and ahh about things and decide if they actually have time to look for what you are after.
can be worth the wait though, sometimes they charge hardly anything.

if you write a list of stuff (know the details, sizes, reach etc) and go looking for it yourself in the parts room at Bike revolution you can often get lucky

Bicycle Revolution used to be brilliant, unfortunately about 90% of their good oldschool road and track gear disappeared about a year ago - I hazard a guess to the dump.


Ways to strip this frame of its paint?

I gather from previous posts that blasting is a way to go, but seen as this is my holiday project I don’t mind doing it myself if someone can give me a method?


Wire wheel for a drill or grinder.

But don’t go too hard.