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Old 09-21-05, 01:31 PM   #1
jharber15
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Coming back to riding!

Hi guys,

I used to ride almost everyday. Back in 1997, I got into a pretty solid accident and ended up trashing my old Specialized Hardrock. I then got my hands on a Brand new GT Palomar. This bike is beautiful, but I know that the components are not quite up to par. The price was right for a 17 year old kid.

I'm now 24, and have started to ride much more. My Palomar is still almost in brand new condition. It was not really used for years and always kept in a perfect indoor setting. I'm not quite ready to bite the bullet on a new bike, but I was thinking that there would be some components worth upgrading on this bike. First of all, the shocks....every bike has front suspension these days. This would definitely help me in my trail riding.

Obviously, it's not worth dumping a ton of money into this bike, but for the right price some upgrades would be worth it! I do not mind buying used components. Could anyone suggest a used fork to look for? I have noticed that lower end bikes often sport RST shocks (I'm not sure if these are even worth a damn), or would it be worthwhile to look for a used answer or Rock Shox fork.

Any input would be appreciated!! Thanks,

Jason
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Old 09-21-05, 01:40 PM   #2
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If you're going to buy a used fork, you might as well buy a whole used bike. The technology from the nineties is getting pretty dated now. Bikes are lighter, stronger, faster, etc. You should be able to get a decent hardtail for not much more than buying a decent fork. If you want to buy a used fork, try a coil spring Marzocchi or a Fox. I have never seen a good used Rock Shox or Manitou fork. The RST might not be bad, but don't expect a high-performance ride.
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Old 09-21-05, 01:47 PM   #3
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Same situation as me, buddy! I'm 24 and in the same position.

I just dragged my 1995 Proflex 855 out of the closet. I used to race NORBA, mount Snow, everything, every day, breathed mountain biking, untill I went to college in 1999. Usage kept declining, and in 2003 when I graduated college and got a job, biking basically vanished.

So, the other week I pulled out my old bike. Decided it wasn't worth it to buy a new one Iwould just fix mine up enough to get itgoing. I'm not sure what you want to drop, but I had a budget of about $300 to get it going again.

I needed new tires (dry rot) new tube, full tune-up (wheel true, deraileur adjustments) new brake pads, new chain, new suspension elastomers (the proflex ones die out after about 5 years). NOw, the bike is fun again! Still nothing like amodern bike, but I also won't be riding like I was when I was 17.

Good luck! Have fun!
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Old 09-21-05, 01:52 PM   #4
jharber15
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Thanks for the input. I just hate to not use this bike. THere is not a bit of rust on it! I'll take a look at the forks. Any other opinions on what to do?

I'm so excited!
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Old 09-21-05, 02:27 PM   #5
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It's funny cause I actually ahve a post just like yours down below.

I guess the main things that have changed in the past 5-7 years are:
preponderance of disc brakes
frame geomotry (more upright)
updated shifting
longer travel
bikes have really broken into genres, 10 years ago, everything was a cross country bike. A downhill bike ws a cross country bike with maybe a heavier handlebar or something. Now, you have freeride, all-mountain, downhill, cross country.. etc...

I would put money into the things that make it perform like stock again. I don't know how bad your shock is. I saw some good ones on ebay for <100 (decent name brands, good shape, just older)
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Old 09-21-05, 02:59 PM   #6
jharber15
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I actually don't even have shox right now. All that I have is a rigid fork. This is why I'm so interested in finding me some shocks. Everything on the bike is running fine. I just went for a 10 mile ride with no problems the other day. Comfort is the only thing i'm really looking at now. I am going to pick up a new seat, and shocks are my main priority.
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Old 09-21-05, 04:00 PM   #7
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I'm pretty much in the same boat as you. 94 GT Timberline FS (front suspension) rode for 3 years constantly then stored until recently. Dusted it off a few weeks ago, replaced dry rotted tires and put new cablesand chains on it and it rides great (did the same for my wife's bike). I'm looking into upgrading the shock or putting a spring kit into it and possibly upgrading to V brakes over cantilever...other than that I love this bike, no reason to get rid of it right now. I might change the stem & bars too to get a touch more upright as right now I'm pretty stretched out.

I'm looking for a good deal on a decent new or used shock and hoping I can swap my current Q10 onto my wife's '94 GT Talera rigid fork so she gets some suspension for single track use. Since she's 80 lbs lighter than me it should work as long as her geometry doesn't get screwed up. Can anyone confirm this that worked on GT's 10 years ago? Not much info on the web about them since they are so old...I've searched. I'm assuming it will work fine though.

Last edited by Too Rass Goat; 09-21-05 at 04:49 PM.
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Old 09-21-05, 06:06 PM   #8
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check out JensonUSA or Cambria bicycles. they usually have some old stuff that is new but last years (or older) models for as little as $80. I honestly wouldnt go above 80mm travel or it will change the geometry so much it wont be enjoyable to ride. my first fork was in 97, a rockshox quadra 60mm. basically 2 metal tubes, a rubber eraser for compression damping, and brake boss. now even a fork a couple of years old is an awesome thing. last time I checked Cambria had some 03 Manitou magnums that were 76mm travel ad about $60.
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Old 09-21-05, 06:45 PM   #9
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Is there any way for me to find out if my fork is threaded or threadless withotu taking it apart? I'm probably just going to have my local dealer put on the fork once i buy it. (1998 GT Palomar)

Thanks
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Old 10-20-05, 10:33 PM   #10
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Just wanted to update this thread. I decided to pick up an old RST 280 fork. I actually got the fork for 6 dollars on ebay! I paid a total of 20 dollars shipped for the rst fork, headset, and a stem that all came together in the auction. These were all off of some guys old (99) iron horse that he upgraded. The suspension is not the best, but is easily noticed.

I put the fork on, and decided to go with the stem (due to the more upright one that was previously on my bike). Let me just say, this addition added new life to my bike. In all honesty, I know that you guys will say this stuff is crap, but for anyone in my situation, it'll get you back into the groove.


If you guys are thinking of upgrading an old bike, certain RST forks might do you some good, especially if you can get one at the insanely low price that I did. It almost cost me nothing to get this bike a little more up to date.

Of course, i'm sure next spring, I'll be shopping for a new bike, but this does a really nice job for now!

PS I know that I sound extremely neglected, but it's all about the riding :-)
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Old 10-21-05, 01:25 PM   #11
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LOL, WOW Atleast I can join this thread. Used to ride when I was younger, when I started my apprenticeship I purchased myself a Gary Fisher Katai, Did not do too much riding on this bike when I qualified and stopped riding. Have just decided to start riding again to keep myself fit, so far I have done 2 races that went ok. I have been "Given" R15 000 ($2275) So have Just put in my order for a Giant Reign 3. I will pick it up next week. I am now 27 after an absense of about 5-6 years.

I CANNOT WAIT UNTIL NEXT WEEK. :-)))))))))
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Old 10-21-05, 06:24 PM   #12
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For $20 I don't think any functional suspension fork would be a bad deal. I too have recently gotten back into biking, although I don't have the time or energy to ride like I did back in the early 90s. I just got new tires, chain, and cogs for my '95 KHS Pro and I'm having a lot of fun with it. I've considered a new bike, but I just love this one too much. It's lighter than most new hardtails and IMO better looking. Maybe I'm just outdated, but most new bikes just look a little too wild for my taste.
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