Building an analog bike from scratch


Well-Known Member
My son is hellbent on building his own analog bike, starting with a 450 dollar carbon fibre frame from China. Any pointers from the peanut gallery? He wants more exercise and a light bike. He seems to be fairly handy and I am curious to see the final product. Here is the frame he is ordering.



Well-Known Member
Its a great feeling building your own bike as I have built most of mine.

Its really not cost effective though if thats what he is trying to accomplish unless he really shops around.

My recommendation would be to have a bike shop install the headset/fork and bottom bracket. Its certainly doable but the hardest part of the build and requires special tools (most everything else can be done with allen wrench).


Well-Known Member
He is trying to do it more I think for the feeling of accomplishment and also to build a lighter bike that will offer him more exercise. I am endorsing it as I think it's great he is into bikes. Was hoping he could keep the entire build under a grand...


Fredericton, NB
I agree with linklemming. It would be cheaper to shop around and buy a complete bike but your son will gain from that sense of accomplishment and experience in doing the build. In addition to the headset and bottom bracket installation I'd also have a local shop check the rear derailleur hanger for alignment. It's a quick check that nothing is bent and the chainline will be reasonably close in alignment, it's only a few extra dollars and that will buy a little insurance from pulling your hair out tracking down a shifting problem.

You can certainly save by building your own wheels but I think it takes a special individual to have the patience to do this without any experience. So I'd suggest buying complete wheelsets. I might also keep an eye on used parts. Finding things like suitable used wheels (especially if they are local), or items that don't wear much like a front derailleur or a seatpost could offer good savings. For the brakes and drivetrain I'd buy new unless I personally knew the individual selling the parts. Oh and no matter how nice any used pieces might be, always use new cables, for everything.

In general it will take a good amount of time online to find good buys for all the bits and pieces. I'd suggest having multiple choices for many parts as many popular items right now are sold out or have longer lead times. Buying a complete parts group can save a lot of time and aggravation. The online research will be almost as valuable as the build itself.