I dropped about $150 on a Wal-Mart bike. I know how anyone even mildly serious about bicycling will scoff; but I knew what I was getting myself into. It's an anchor, it doesn't shift, and the suspension feels like a cheap mattress. But the wheels roll, and I ride about once every year or so; so I'm not too unhappy with it.
But I'm handy and feel like changing the components on the bike. The biggest problem I have is the shifting; I've spent several weeks adjusting it, and it just doesn't shift under any load. The front derailleur is no-name DLP, the rear is also no-name Shimano Tourney. The second problem I have is the front disk brake; it's junk.
So now that I'm stuck with the bike; I'm thinking of upgrading the components. How about:
1. Putting in Deore LX/XT Front/Rear Derailleurs (~50)
2. New cables
3. Front disk brake (~30)
4. Would changing the cassettes help shifting? (the ones I have are useless with none of that hyperglide stuff)
Again, I don't really care if it's an anchor or if it's a weak frame -- I don't ride that often or hard (read: around my street). But the shifting and breaking are critical, so I'm thinking of replacing those parts.
Please don't tell me to go to a bike store (the tune ups cost more than my bike), I'm handy and have loads of free time to be miserable adjusting parts. I already bought the bike, so no buyer's remorse or I'll be sad.