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  1. #1
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    Questions from a returning newbie

    I used to be into biking big time, but stopped about 8 years ago. I recently decided to get back into it, so I've been going through all my old parts and pieces and figuring out what I need to fix up my old bike versus buying a new bike. I want to keep my expenditures reasonable. I've been eyeing the Rockhopper Comp Disc, so I would want to build something comparable.

    I've forgotten some of the terminology, so please forgive and correct.

    I'm currently stripping the paint off my old aluminum frame ('96 Trek 6500). It had a REALLY bad paint touch up job, and it was just ugly. I'm planning to keep it unpainted (although I may to a clearcoat).

    Questions:

    1. I have a solid steel fork. The fork is threaded (1 1/8"). Is it possible to buy new threaded suspension forks? If not, what do I need to do to use a threadless fork? Replace the headset?

    2. I'm a clydesdale. Any particular recommendation on forks? Coming from a solid fork, is there any reason I wouldn't be happy with the $70 '04 Judy from Nashbar?

    3. I have cantilever brakes. How can I determine whether or not I can put disc brakes on the rear?

    4. I don't have my wheels any more. Any recommendations? Is ebay the way to go for wheels?

    5. My drivetrain was set-up for 8 speed rear. Can I still get hubs/cogsets for this?

    6. My components are LX/XT/XTR, but from about 10 years ago. Has the technology improved enough that it would be worth replacing these? Would today's Alivio be as good as 10 year old XT?

    Thanks for any assistance!

  2. #2
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    "3. I have cantilever brakes. How can I determine whether or not I can put disc brakes on the rear?"

    that frame does not have disc mounts. there are ways of mounting a disc, but probably not worth it.


    "5. My drivetrain was set-up for 8 speed rear. Can I still get hubs/cogsets for this?"

    8 speed is readily available.

    "6. My components are LX/XT/XTR, but from about 10 years ago. Has the technology improved enough that it would be worth replacing these? Would today's Alivio be as good as 10 year old XT?"

    oh my god no! todays alivio is worse than alivio from 10 years ago.

    I would fix up that bike and ride it for a year to see if you want to get serious about biking. A new rockhopper is in some ways not as good a bike as your old trek.

  3. #3
    Too Much Crazy
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    Hello Squiddy

    I would reccomend getting a new bike. I mean, as of right now all you have is a 10 year old aluminum frame.

    that not withstanding

    1. if you have a 1 1/8 headtube then get a threadless headset. You can get them cheap and will have infinately more forks to choose from.

    2. I would stick with a rigid fork. Nothing is worse than cheap suspension forks. That fork will feel noodly.

    3. on the left seatstay there should be disc tabs.

    4. Jenson USA, Pricepoint and Nashbar. You can pick up machine built wheels at $100 that will be great after a hand truing

    5. Yes

    6. If your components have little to no wear I would keep them. If not, the current Deore line is where trail worthy parts start, in my opinion

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the tips guys. Like mcoine said, I'd like to fix it up as cheaply as possible and figure out if it is something that I'd like to really get into again before I spend a bunch of money. I like to do all the work myself, and already have most of the tools. After what you suggested, this is my plan of attack:

    Keep my current frame/fork/working components (plus my awesome Girvin Flexstem )
    Buy new wheels, cassette, chain and new V-Brakes.

    Flaws? Any other suggestions on cool new things?

  5. #5
    Why Be Normal? Gorsar's Avatar
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    You'll need new brake levers as the ones from your cantis won't work. I'm sure the levers were implied but I wanted to make sure..

  6. #6
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    Thanks! Good to know. I thought they would work.

  7. #7
    Svr
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squidboy

    I'm currently stripping the paint off my old aluminum frame ('96 Trek 6500). It had a REALLY bad paint touch up job, and it was just ugly. I'm planning to keep it unpainted (although I may to a clearcoat).

    Questions:

    1. I have a solid steel fork. The fork is threaded (1 1/8"). Is it possible to buy new threaded suspension forks? If not, what do I need to do to use a threadless fork? Replace the headset?
    What was the original color? I don't recall Trek offering the 6500 in 1996, but they produced that model in 1995 and 1997. The 1995 color was Ice Silver/Ice Indigo fade w/Ice Indigo decals, while the 1997 was gloss Ice Red wit black decals.

    Either way, you've got a bonded frame, so be careful with what method you use to remove the paint -- you might remove a tube or two.

    Threadless forks will require a new headset and a new stem.

  8. #8
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    It may have been a '97. It was (well, sort of, still working on getting all the paint off) Gloss Ice Red, but it had white decals. It's decal said 6500ZX, but I bought just the frame, not a whole bike.

    I did use a chemical stripper to get the paint off. Am I screwed? Is the frame going to come unbonded when I least expect it?

  9. #9
    Svr
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    If it hasn't come apart yet, you're probably ok. You might ride it with a bit of caution at first, just to be sure.

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