Here's my latest bike -- I reckon it's an early 1970's Peugeot UO-8. This bike represents a number of "firsts" for me:

- it's my first single speed conversion
- it has the first set of wheels I ever built
- it's the first crappy 'bike boom' 10 speed I ever paid good money for ;-)

I came across this fine piece of Gallic engineering by way of a charity auction. A guy we know in Boulder CO had gotten hit by a train some months ago (and miraculously survived). Needless to say he has some fairly substantial medical bills so several of his friends organized a fund raiser at a local brew pub to help him out. Many local businesses chipped in goods and services for the auction, including this Peugeot, which (after a few pints) was won by yours truly. Once the beer goggles wore off I was left to ponder what to do with my new acquisition. All the cool kids are building single speeds these days so that seemed like the next logical step.

The words of the late great Sheldon Brown - - were an enormous help in getting a grip on all the little idiosyncrasies of older French bicycles. I ditched the stock Ava stem (aka the 'death stem') for a Nitto Technomic and some moustache bars that I had lying around. I kept the Mafac Racer - - brakes, adding some Kool Stop pads and Cane Creek levers. I also kept the AGDA leather saddle; the jury is still out on that, there might be a B17 in my future.

With a lot of help from our local bike shop mechanic (thanks Dan!) I laced up some Surly single speed hubs to Salsa Delgado Cross rims. I'm currently running an 18T freewheel on one side and a Surly dingle cog (17 / 21t) on the other. Tires are some 35mm 'cross types that I had on my LHT for awhile. The old cottered steel cranks and Lyotard rat traps were replaced with a Sugino crankset and MKS touring pedals.

As an aside, the fine folks at Velo Orange are supposedly getting a run of modern French tread bottom brackets produced - . This is fairly awesome news for anyone trying to revitalize an older French bicycle. I dropped them an email recently and was told that these should be available in a few months and at a reasonable cost.

Anyway, this was a fun little project and I certainly learned a lot. Thanks as always for the great site

- Michael Kullman



Peugeot UO-8 - before the change
Peugeot UO-8 - side view
Peugeot UO-8 - head on view
Peugeot UO-8 - rear angle view
Peugeot UO-8 - front angle view




Current Classics Photo Gallery - Cross Bike Photo Gallery

Single Speed Garage Photo Gallery
- Working Bikes & Practical Hardware

  Submit a Single Speed Bicycle Photo