Got into mountain biking over the last few months. Was riding an old Raleigh F-500 and built up this bike about a month ago. The main reason for the upgrade was that I wanted disc brakes and the old frame didn't have provisions for it.
Frame: 18.5 Access XCL
Fork: Tora SL (need to re-spring it. The preload is maxed out and I'm getting acceptable sag but I would like the correct spring in there.
Wheels: Sun DS2-XC on XT Hubs.
Tires: Panaracer Fire XC pro 2.1
Brakes: F: 185 BB7 R: 160 BB7 with SD-7 Levers, Sram Full Metal Jacket Cables.
Saddle: an old Nashbar touring saddle I had around
Cranks: Race Face Evolve XC
Drivetrain: SRAM X-7 dérailleurs and shifters.
Stem: Race Face Deus XC 90mm
Handlbars: Easton EA30 low rise
The overall build was around 800 dollars. When I was deciding whether to buy or build (I was looking at a Rockhopper very closely) I chose that I would get more enjoyment out of piecing together a bike and I actually ended up with comparable or even better components that come stock on a Rockhopper of the same price range.
The bike has about 45 miles on it now of trail riding. I usually go to Snow Hill Trail (Chuluota FL) as that is the closest thing around that is worth going to. This weekend I hope to put some miles on at Santos Trail in Ocala FL.
Trail riding is completely different from what I've been doing the past couple years (all road bikes and fixed gear riding (I did a fixed gear century last September). I'm pretty sure I enjoy this more than road cycling as there is more things to look at and you don't have to dodge cars. The main difference I'm noticing is that I crash a lot more (seems inherently more dangerous depending on terrain).