Mountain Biking - UPGRADING, where to start?
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09-03-02, 07:43 AM
I recently bought a Diamond Back Response. Entry level bike I guess. I am starting to get the upgrade fever and since I will be taking it in affordable steps, where should I start?
The bike has a Suntour shock in front, rear D is Acera, and the Front is Alivio. The crank is a garden variety shimano and it has plastic(??) pedals(those have to go, i know!)
Any help will be much apreciated!
09-03-02, 07:53 AM
I say fork first, www.pricepoint.com and www.coloradocyclist.com are having good deals right now.
09-03-02, 08:04 AM
If. . . it's a bike path/around town bike, pedals and shoes first. On a bike path, sidewalk or road you won't feel much benefit from a new fork.
If. . . you want to ride trails, i.e. real off road, pedals and shoes first, then a fork.
Then, ride your current drivetrain and wheels until they wear out, or you've clearly reached a point where the bike doesn't suit your needs. Now it's time to make a decision. Upgrade or new bike.
09-03-02, 08:19 AM
I agree, get a decent fork and your bike will feel 100 % better. I personally like Marzocchi's. But I rode a friends bike with the new Rock Shox Psylo's and they felt smooth. (Still not as good as my zokes!) I'd replace the stock headset with a good sealed one. A good quality, yet affordable one is something like a Cane Creek C2. (around $40) Get a Chris King if you've got the money to spend. It'll be the last one you'll have to buy! (around $110)
Most people would then say the wheelset. I disagree. Granted, this is rotational mass and a worthy upgrade, but since you're a beginner, you're eventually going to whack a wheel. Replace them once you destroy them. You're going to be learning a lot of new skills that will put a lot of stress on your wheels. I'd hate for you to buy a nice wheelset and destroy it the next ride. Ride the ones you've got till they're trash. Same goes for the shifters and derailleurs.
After the fork, I'd upgrade the cranks and the bottom bracket. This is an area where there is a significant difference between a Sugino Stock crank with a cheap bottom bracket and lets say a Race Face LP Crank w/ ISIS splined bb. There are a lot of nice stiff, strong and light cranks available. Also, the chainrings will shift a lot smoother. Plus, it's a significant appearance upgrade.
My next item would be the brakes. You DON'T need disc brakes. It's costly, and unless you do nothing but downhill is muddy conditions they're more than you need. If you plan on upgrading to discs, you might as well just buy a new bike. It's more cost effective getting them with the bike vs buying brakes, rotors, new wheels and dealing with having to learn to bleed brakes. This could easily add up to $500. $450 more than I'd spend on brakes for this bike! Buy a set of Avid Single Digits or Shimano Deore Vee brakes and move on to the next upgrade!
Next, I would replace the heavy stock generic items in the cockpit. This includes the seatpost, usually very heavy, the stock seat, handlebars and stem. This may not seem logical, but manufacturers usually use the lowest grade material for these items. Replacing these with quality aftermarket products will cut down a lot of weight.
After these upgrades, then go for the shifters/derailleurs, cassette and chain and then a nice light wheelset.
09-03-02, 09:07 AM
I agree with Woody. First pedals, then fork (if you will be ridng alot of off road) then wait until everything burns up.
09-03-02, 09:34 AM
Buy the things you would transfer to another bike should you choose to upgrade your frame later on. Pedals are a good choice as even if you buy a new high zoot bike you'll likely still want pedals that suit your style/conditions the best.
I'm not sure I'd invest much in a fork for that frame. The modern forks have much more travel and older frames don't handle it as well. I'd look for a top of the line fork from the same era your frame was made.
best of luck!
09-03-02, 03:15 PM
Folks thanks for all responses, I am going to start small (pedals) and work my way up. I'll keep ya posted
My first change was the saddle, then tires, then brakes, then????? A good bike is ALWAYS a work in progress.:D
09-03-02, 04:52 PM
Wheels, nothing feels better than a nice set of tires. Not the whole wheelset. Let the rim and spokes be destroyedand then replace those with suitable parts.
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