hi forumsters, hope your lockdown is going well and with little flats.
allow me to present my little retro mtb story so far. everything started with a diamond back axis that i finished in october, which then after all felt a bit too heavy for my liking. super fun to ride though.
growing willingness to partake in the burgeoning bikepacking trend and desire for delving deeper into the fascinating world of ruining frames with a 1x drivetrain led me to something a bit newer. a wild late 90s klein pulse (frame only) was kindly offered on fb marketplace with very bad photos and i took the bait. the welds are far from gary approved but it's still somewhat light and functionally pleasing.
as it came without fork, a mystery piece of chinese carbon (toseek) was sourced from a polite family man of indian descent. s/o to him for another sweet deal on fb marketplace. gotta love that place as a slow dibser. before unleashing the most eager china carbon doubter vultures it should be mentioned we're talking about a sub 70kg rider here. not entirely sure of the suspension correctedness, but the axle-to-crown height is 38.5cm iirc. if the frame requires a suspension corrected fork in a rigid build, what are the consequences of not having the said fork in terms of geometry/ride feel?
the initial idea was to have the axis to donate all the rest of the parts, but as it tends to happen, the appetite comes with eating. at first the tranz x steel riser needed to go and an easton monkeylite was procured. this would go nicely with the old faithful 50mm thomson stem i had in the parts bin. i was thinking to mount the right side tech99 lever upside down to save money and add edginess, but if someone has a nice spare left side (paul etc vibes) to go with xt cantis (or some better brakes i'm soon convinced into) for the low, i'm open to it. left side is a must due to a disability. oury v2s and ck headset complete the cockpit.
the next longing was sexier cranks. nothing wrong with the xt but wi jawns happened to be around so they gravitated to me. s/o to stridsland for providing the 36t narrow-wide to match the 94bcd arms. this was supposed to be the last upgrade until someone told me it's possible to have more gears on the left side on top of the perfectly functional og xt 7spd friction thumbie by using paul's mounts. bless paul. i swiftly bought a tatty ish sram x0 mech and a tt500 bar end shifter to keep the dream on.
after a short celebratory moment i realised the 10spd sram cassette i had started dreaming of won't fit the old xt freehub. i'd either need a whole different wheelset or a different rear hub to lace into the rear araya rm395 team rim. the pinnacle of the dolorosa so far was reached as no one seemed to be selling light wheels with loud ear candy hubs and brake surfaces. as stans ztr 355 msw version i fell in love with is literally facing extinction, i went for the 2nd option and am now desperately looking for a 32h/135mm tune kong or mag, or a similar used rear. hub offers more than welcome as i'd like to keep it as 2nd hand as possible and avoid dropping all the funds too.
please feel free to suggest alternative ways to take the build to, nothing is really set in stone yet. especially lighter msw rim alternatives are considered. the araya's are rather light at 403g thinking the time period, but a more modern wheelset would give a stronger modern parts old frame impression which i'm kind of after. part lists for both builds being posted below. thanks for reading.
diamond back axis '91 f&f
tranz x steel riser
tioga t-bone 1 1/8 70mm quill
weed bmx grips
magura hs22/deore xt levers
magura hs22 hydraulic rear brake
deore xt front canti
vtg suede turbo
araya rm 395 team rims/deore xt hubs/maxxis dth 26x2.15 skinwall folding
deore xt friction thumbie
deore xt 7spd mech
deore xt cranks
garbaruk 38t narrow-wide
odyssey twisted pc pedals
klein pulse comp ’96 frame
toseek carbon fork
simworks stealth fun 3 bar
hope 50mm mtb stem (upgrade to enve alu mtb stem?)
chris king sotto voce 1 1/8
paul love lever compact
bombshell 686 long v brakes
selle italia euro flite
klein seatpost (upgrade to kcnc scandium inline?)
sun rhyno lite xl/royce venus & sp sv8/maxxis dth 26x2.15 skinwall folding
sram tt500/paul thumbies
sram x0 10spd mech
sram pg1070 cassette
white industries by sugino 175mm cranks
stridsland 36t narrow-wide
odyssey twisted pc pedals
tune carbon bottle cage
supernova e3 dynamo lights
Looking forward to see this progress! Is the saddle choice dictated by the EU-UK trade & cooperation agreement?
the saddle ended up here mostly because i happened to find a lighter option (troy lee x selle, ~180g) for my faster bike, and this was freed. haven’t been a fan of bojo’s policies before and even less now as they’re literally hurting the hub trade from germany. sad times.
about to pull a trigger on kcnc jockey wheels and figured out i need a sram pg1070 11-36 cassette.
finally found a wheelset and don't need to tear the xt arayas apart now. thanks @platypus. bit heavier (536g vs. 403g for araya and 375g for stans) than i was initially aiming for but the dynamo light compatibility and proper machined sidewalls (as opposed to the disc version of stans ztr 355) are a plus. bottleneck defeated and angry bee dreams postponed.
pretty much all the rest of the parts to accommodate the first placeholder build have now arrived. trusted odyssey twisted pc, which i'm still looking hold fasts for. og klein seatpost will eventually need a lighter black? upgrade, just seeing how the cockpit comes up whether i'd need setback or inline. feel free to let me know if you have something light or edgy in 31.6. kcnc jockey wheels, mtb lads told they better than sram. the bombshell bmx racing vs might seem a bit of an odd choice here but liked the looks and presumably good modern braking power. got them for the low too.
sram pg1070 cassette, which should be the lightest from the separate construction ones. was first thinking the 11-32 but decided on 11-36 to guarantee the climbing performance on tricky trails. basic kmc 10 speed chain, bit lazy to change the chains and found these go for longer. finding brake levers was a bit of a pain and let go of the noble idea of well adjusted cantis. paid a tad too much for the paul loves but they should retain their value. as i'll be never needing the right side it's up for grabs, please pm if interested. had to order the sram thumbie mount directly from paul. didn't take too long and surprisingly avoided the customs.
still unsure should i go blue lug meme bike with a simworks anna lee or just keep the extra steerer exposed with the thomson a la bikepackingsucks. the former would look the cleanest without spacers (68mm of steerer out), but the latter might look edgier with more steerer out (80-100mm).
the simworks fun 3 bar is quite similar shape/size wise than the easton i have and should thus be a safe "upgrade" if the cockpit doesn't need much adjustment. no shims needed with the og thomson either as it's 25.4 clamp. the new stealth alu version is lighter but being 31.8 would require a new stem and isn't really available in europe either. if someone has spare any of these, i'm all ears and wallets.
B) going 2 b cool
first build, quick photos. still missing a black inline seatpost, simworks cockpit (bars at least), nitto m18 and a light. everything seems to be working fine. loving the dths even more on this bike. weighed 9.9kg. might change the chainring to the other side of the spider to improve the chainline, which is now leaning to the small cog side. also need to try how the shifter feels like under the bars.
Looks like a lot of fun to ride
Headset spacer ID?
Love this, right up my alley.
I had one of these in 2008, as a pub bike. Light but bloody stiff
not sure, sorry. the kind people at seabass added the spacers.
some minor tweaks to report as the long-awaited simworks order showed up. alu version of the fun 3 bar now installed with parts bin hope stem. feels exactly like the name suggests, fun, cruisey, ergonomic. the fit is much better too now. interestingly no hands stability increased a lot after the extra 200g on the bars, can't complain. might get the alu enve mtb stem or something crust esque in the distant future.
the shifter lever was getting on the way when riding more technical stuff in epping and twisted it underneath the bars, shifting works smoother and the parts are better secured from impacts.
found a rather memey tune carbon cage, which had to go on it too. counting hours to have it in one piece. looking for a king/cargo cage for the downtube mounts. sadly missed out on the recent ones offered on classifieds.
there's slight progress on the light front too. scored a supernova e3 front on the forum, s/o to seller. the side entry cable version of the new tail supernova is on its way from germany. the plan is to route the cable through the toptube guide. apologies for the epping mud and low photo quality.
this is v cool
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