Besides riding bikes since I was a kid, I'm a newbie when it comes to the mechanics of a bike. Hoping to convert a Trek Mountain Bike (that was given to me) to a bike that I can use for long distance riding on streets. I recently purchased an affordable Schwinn road bike which does the trick, but I'm looking for something more comfortable and why I'm considering the conversion.

As part of the conversion, I think I'd like to do the following:

  • swap the suspension forks for non-suspension
  • get road friendly tires
  • swap the handlebars for something taller (I think they're called riser); back hurts with the current ones
  • swap the seat out with something more comfortable
  • swap pedals with standard non-cleat style pedals

I'm also on a budget, but I don't want to sacrifice reliability or comfort for cheapness. Any suggestions on parts and tips for doing the actual swaps? By the way, I'm pretty handy and pretty much do all of my car repairs. I just don't have much experience working on bikes and just like everything, I know there's tips out there that I should be aware of before jumping into it.

Thanks in advance! Here's pics of my bike:

Bike2 Bike3

  • 1
    That is an older aluminum frame. Don't put much money in it. Even if you swap all that stuff out it is not going to be a touring bike.
    – paparazzo
    Mar 1 '16 at 20:11
  • 2
    What is your idea of long distance? 10 miles? 100 miles? 1000 miles? This is not the ideal frame to start with for a touring application but that also depends on how serious you are. Touring bikes are generally built like tanks, and often made from steel frames, This frame is neither is what Frisbee is hinting at. When something breaks 150+ miles from any where it can get ugly.
    – Nate W
    Mar 1 '16 at 21:05
  • 1
    You definitely can use that as a touring bike, especially just around urban areas. Add a rear rack and make some bucket panniers, you're good to go. It won't be especially comfortable or fast, but it will work. I've been with people who rode from Darwin to Perth on bikes like that.
    – Móż
    Mar 1 '16 at 22:18
  • Among my stable of bikes and trikes I have a Scott that is a touring conversion. It's a 4500 model and has front and rear racks, Schwalbe "Big Apple" tyres, Mudguards (Fenders?) and a Brooks saddle. I put rigid forks on and I'm confident of covering a, loaded with camping gear, trip with it.
    – Pedaldog
    Mar 1 '16 at 22:34
  • You might consider European style trekking or 'butterfly' bars for more comfortable hand positions / relief from back pain. I used to use one of these on a commuter & loved them. Check into the Schwalbe Marathon line of tires.
    – renesis
    Mar 1 '16 at 22:42

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