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  1. #1
    S'toon trail rider! MisterK's Avatar
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    upping to 7spd alivio. a few quick Qs first

    I've ridden my 2011 mountaineer for one season and this spring before bike season fires up I wanna do some upgrades. I got an idea of what I want but I have a few questions before I get my hands dirty.
    I want to swap my front and rear derail to alivio and possibly the crank to alivio aswell.
    The questions are: will I need to swap to an alivio cassette and swap the bb to acheive all I'm asking or will everything work keeping stock bb and cassette?
    Here are the stock specs http://www.pinkbike.com/product/norco/2011-Mountaineer/
    (Its says the frame is 7005 but its actually 6061 :/ )
    All help and suggestions appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    The Alivio derailer will work fine with the 14-28 cassette/freewheel. As for the BB, it's hard to say. We need to know the specific crank model you are going to and the specific bb you currently have. My guess, and it's just a guess, is no it won't work. I'll bet the Suntour is square taper. Most Shimano BB's today are some sort of spline, but it is possible the Alivio is still square taper.
    If it's square taper to square taper you're good to go. If it's almost any type of spline, The bb probably won't work.
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  3. #3
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    My suggestion would be to spend more upgrading the derailers and not worry about the cranks. Hopefully someone will correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think you'll see any difference other than maybe a few grams by upgrading the cranks to Alivio, but I think you'll notice a nice difference in performance by upgrading the rear derailer in particular as much as you can. If you could upgrade to 8/9speed Deore, for example, I think you'd have a much improved experience on the trail. Whether you can go 9sp would depend on your rear wheel(freehub). I'd bet you could upgrade the rear to 8/9sp Deore derailer, shifter, and cassette for under $150. It would require a new chain, though, so another $25+ there depending on how high you want to go on quality. Even if you stayed with the 7sp, though, I think it would be more of an upgrade to get nice derailers than to upgrade the cranks.

    This is all if you ride trails with your bike. If you use it for commuting, etc, disreguard my suggestion, as it won't matter as much then for the shifting, but perhaps saving a little weight on the cranks or something might be more important. If that's the case, though, I'd still think there may be other more worthwhile upgrades. Perhaps some nice light weight commuter tires rather than the crank.
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  4. #4
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    Correct, leave the cranks on there until they wear out, then upgrade them. I still have 7-speed cassettes on my bike, they work perfectly fine. Upgrading to 9-speed will force you to change shifters, chains, possibly cranks and derailers... almost everything.

    They still make 7-speed parts, thankfully.

  5. #5
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    I think his cranks would still work with a 8/9sp set-up. In my experience, I've never had chain-ring compatibility problems going to 9sp. That's not to say it couldn't happen, I suppose, but I'd be surprised. He would need to change shifters and he's looking to upgrade his derailer as is. For 8sp he'd need to pick up the derailer he plans on getting anyway, and then a cassette, shifters, and chain. There's nothing at all wrong with 7sp. I just figured since he's looking to upgrade anyway and he could use the extra he was planning on using for the cranks to upgrade the rest...
    90 Miyata 914 with full Dura-Ace
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    Quote Originally Posted by scyclops View Post
    Oh yeah, sure, what if everyone thought that way? Then internet forums would merely be places where rational people exchange useful information and ideas - instead of the chaotic, emotionally-charged circuses that they are.

  6. #6
    S'toon trail rider! MisterK's Avatar
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    Well thank you everyone for the awesome responses. I guess ill just change the derailleurs n leave it at that for this season (eh maybe experiment with new tires) what I was actually hoping to achieve changing the crank(and chainrings) is less teeth upfront and by what I read, the alivios actually only have 2 less teeth on small and middle cog.
    I limited myself to alivio because I knew going deore or higher would require 8or9spd and swapping out too many parts for my liking. Besides I don't wanna run outta stuff to tinker with too quickly, as eager I am to do so

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    There should be some higher grade 7sp stuff. It's just older, so you'll have to look around a lot to find it. Otherwise look and see if 7 and 8sp derailers have the same pull. For example, you can use a 9sp derailer with 8sp in the rear just fine as long as you have the 8sp shifter. I wonder if 7sp is the same. Then you could just pick up a nice 8sp derailer and enjoy quick, butter smooth shifts that way.
    90 Miyata 914 with full Dura-Ace
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    80s Cierra Professional 5000, Tange Champion 2 and Shimano 600
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    Quote Originally Posted by scyclops View Post
    Oh yeah, sure, what if everyone thought that way? Then internet forums would merely be places where rational people exchange useful information and ideas - instead of the chaotic, emotionally-charged circuses that they are.

  8. #8
    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Is the bike used mostly for commuting? The description issued by Norco 'With an XC/All Mountain platform' is a bit of a contradiction since the components are rated by Shimano for city use.

    Personally I'd suggest you swap out the resin pedels before they break, put on some nice barends for more leverage (I tape mine over), get rid of the knobby tires as you're probably not riding in mud and rocks, and just have fun with the bike.


    Wide, slick or semi slick tires won't slow you down and will give better float on sand, crushed gravel and unpaved bicycle trails.

  9. #9
    Curmudgeon tmat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyStickman View Post
    Correct, leave the cranks on there until they wear out, then upgrade them. I still have 7-speed cassettes on my bike, they work perfectly fine. Upgrading to 9-speed will force you to change shifters, chains, possibly cranks and derailers... almost everything.

    They still make 7-speed parts, thankfully.
    This is a good point: Ride that bike into the ground, then fix what's broken.

    But I wouldn't spend any money upgrading. It's probably wiser to save cash and upgrade to a nicer bike that already has the components you want because the cost to replace parts piece-meal will far exceed the cost of your bike.

  10. #10
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyStickman View Post
    Correct, leave the cranks on there until they wear out, then upgrade them. I still have 7-speed cassettes on my bike, they work perfectly fine. Upgrading to 9-speed will force you to change shifters, chains, possibly cranks and derailers... almost everything.

    They still make 7-speed parts, thankfully.
    +1, Don't forget the rear wheel. Almost all late model 7 speed rear wheels are set up for a freewheel, not a cassette. When upgrading to 8 or 9 speed, the rear hub will need to be changed to the large freehub design. It's usually cheaper to just replace the rear wheel.
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  11. #11
    S'toon trail rider! MisterK's Avatar
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    Not going up the extra 150$ for a bushpilot kinda left me in this position. Bush pilot has everything I plan to upgrade to (doh!) And its 8spd...oh well...my friend is tryin to talk me into goin 8spd but to me its a lot of work and just not what I budgetted for even tho he's awesome @ finding real good used parts.
    I'm just gonna do the rear derail as an alivio (new or used) and my friend has an LX front I can just have so that saves me abit of money. Now I just need an idea of what kind of tires to buy (cuz the purpose of this all is ride quality) I need a tired that will give me a good ride on and off pavement n can handle decent trails (sand,some gravel, unpaved road) and be comfy pulling my son in his croozer occasionally. I saw the smallblock8 at my LBS but is that abit of overkill for what I want? Is it pavement friendly or are tires like that stricktly dirt? I def want a wider tire none the less, still rockin the stocks

  12. #12
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    I haven't seen the Small Block 8s in action on the road but I rode with a guy who had them on his FS setup and he liked them. One I have actually ridden on the road are these:

    http://www.jensonusa.com/!wQwWj7499x...medium=organic

    They feel pretty stout and probably would work fine for your purposes.

    If you stalk the various bike part sites you can get a good deal on nice tires.
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  13. #13
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    Tough call on the tires that I don't have a lot of experience with, but no tire does on and off road really well. You always have to choose which is more important to you. Otherwise all bikes would just have one type of tire that worked for everything. That said, I'd think maybe a urban MTB tire would be suitable. The decent ones are made to work well on pavement, but they're generally wider and still have some tread so they would handle light trails fine as long as you're not planning on railing turns at speed or anything. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I kind of get the feeling when you say "trails" that you're more talking about paths that aren't paved, not faster speed downhill singletrack? You don't need particularly much tread for unpaved paths, gravel, dirt, whatever. I'd just get something with a little tread, more solid road design in the middle of the tread, and not too narrow. Maybe that's what they consider a hybrid tire? Off road knobby tires are terrible for pavement and wear out very quickly.
    90 Miyata 914 with full Dura-Ace
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    80s Cierra Professional 5000, Tange Champion 2 and Shimano 600
    2011 New Belgium Cruiser
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    Quote Originally Posted by scyclops View Post
    Oh yeah, sure, what if everyone thought that way? Then internet forums would merely be places where rational people exchange useful information and ideas - instead of the chaotic, emotionally-charged circuses that they are.

  14. #14
    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Treads on tires are really only usefull if you're riding in mud, uphill on loose earth, or in snow. I've run a XC bike with 2.3 Geaxx Tattoos and 2.5 Maxxis HookWorms on and off road ( except in those conditions) with no issues. A round semi-slick profile makes them extremely effective on paved surfaces and the width makes them float exceptionally well in gravel, sand or crushed limestone. My commutes and recreational rides regularly take me through paved, unpaved and packed dirt trails without issue.

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