So back in 2010 i bought one of these from a local store, reduced from £379 to £220. Good deal i thought, hadn't used a bike in 10 years and was within my price range. I soon found out it was a heavy frame with not so great parts, but like a mentally damaged pet that runs into doors whilst you laugh and secretly know you shouldn't, I still love the damned thing.
So after it sitting in my hallway for the last nine months the time (and financial restrictions) has come where it is now to be my main form of commute to and from work, a princely total of 14 miles per day. But first it needs some upgrades to make it into what i wish it to be, and that is where I hope you guys and gals can help out with some advice.
I picked up a set of Shimano Deore hydraulics to replace the awful cable disc brakes, got them on only to find one of the cheapie Tektro discs was warped so a new set of Avid are winging their way to me now. Hopefully that cures the rub.
Before the bike goes in for new paint I would prefer to source all the parts I need for this build, Fleabay being my primary purchase location as work doesn't really allow me the time to go browsing the bike stores near me.
So my next mission are the shifters, and here i admit i'm stumped....ideally i would like to replace the current SRAM 4 set up with something similar to to the Marin Eldridge i had back in the day, a 'no indicator' trigger shifter. I checked out the pictures of the old Marin and it was an all in one system with the levers and gears combined, obviously no use to me.
So whats good, what works, and most importantly whats a reasonable price?
The 'goose is currently running a 8 speed cassette, and i am not adverse to slipping a 9 on it but that may come into play more when i start begging for info on what i want to do with the chainset (more on that later).
Is it really worth spending a lot of money on a heavy bike? You will get far better value for money buying a new bike, which is lighter and better spec'd. All you will end up with, is a heavy bike with some nicer parts than it started out with.
If you are insistent on keeping the bike, don't limit yourself to ebay for parts, the UK has an incredibly competitive market for bike parts, CRC, Wiggle, Merlin, Woolyhat, Winstanley and many others to source parts from, but you still won't get better value than a complete bike, check out http://www.paulscycles.co.uk/ to see what you can get.
For going from 8 to 9 speed, this is a difficult one at the moment, 9 speed is rapidly becoming obsolete, at the high end, shifters are the first to go, but below Deore 9 speed should be available for the next few years.