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Old 12-17-12, 01:58 PM   #1
rpthomas
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1989 Rockhopper Comp converted to Adventure bike.

I purchased this 1989 Rockhopper Comp from the original owner a few months ago, was never ridden just sat in his garage. Pretty close to pristine condition and was all stock when received. I thought it a perfect candidate for a S24O {sub 24hr. overnight** camp bike. I replaced the standard bars with On One Midge dirt drop bars, added bar-end shifters, road bike aero brake levers, adjustable stem to get the height correct, front and rear racks and Vittoria Randonneur tires. Also pink cable housings {not sure why I did that**. Here's the end result, have ridden it about 40 miles and rides like a dream.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Rockhopper S24O bike 001.jpg (98.5 KB, 222 views)
File Type: jpg Rockhopper S24O bike 005.jpg (80.4 KB, 177 views)
File Type: jpg Rockhopper S24O bike 006.jpg (82.8 KB, 218 views)
File Type: jpg Rockhopper S24O bike 012.jpg (86.1 KB, 145 views)
File Type: jpg Rockhopper S24O bike 013.jpg (92.4 KB, 160 views)
File Type: jpg Rockhopper S24O bike 007.jpg (99.1 KB, 138 views)
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Old 12-17-12, 04:30 PM   #2
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That's cool, follow up with a ride report when you have some miles on it. Oh, ditch the pink, what possessed you?
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Old 12-17-12, 04:38 PM   #3
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Most excellent! I'd be inclined to look around for a rear rack that sat closer to the tire for more room under the saddle, something with a plate to do fender duty. Real nice set up.

Last edited by LeeG; 12-17-12 at 04:45 PM.
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Old 12-17-12, 07:53 PM   #4
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I like! I did something very similar to my 1986 Rockhopper (planning my first short tour on it this spring)
Definitely keep the pink housing!
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Old 12-17-12, 08:13 PM   #5
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As much as I detest all things pink, I kinda dig the tubes, and they really go with the paint scheme on the bike. I'd ditch the brown bar tape and go yellow and black. It would really tie the bike together.

Starting a similar project with an old Trek, so thanks for the inspiration. Think I'll skip the pink tho.
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Old 12-17-12, 08:33 PM   #6
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How do you like the handlebars?
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Old 12-17-12, 10:18 PM   #7
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How do you like the handlebars?
I love the handlebars, if they are set up properly they are very comfortable. I can ride all day on the drops or the hoods. Takes a little getting used to as the drops should be at more of an angle down than on a road bike. Once they are set up right they are very easy on the wrists when on the drops.
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Old 12-17-12, 10:31 PM   #8
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As much as I detest all things pink, I kinda dig the tubes, and they really go with the paint scheme on the bike. I'd ditch the brown bar tape and go yellow and black. It would really tie the bike together.

Starting a similar project with an old Trek, so thanks for the inspiration. Think I'll skip the pink tho.
I put the brown bar tape on it thinking that I would put a honey Brooks B17 saddle on it to match the tape.
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Old 12-17-12, 10:41 PM   #9
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I purchased this 1989 Rockhopper Comp from the original owner a few months ago, was never ridden just sat in his garage. Pretty close to pristine condition and was all stock when received. I thought it a perfect candidate for a S24O {sub 24hr. overnight** camp bike. I replaced the standard bars with On One Midge dirt drop bars, added bar-end shifters, road bike aero brake levers, adjustable stem to get the height correct, front and rear racks and Vittoria Randonneur tires. Also pink cable housings {not sure why I did that**. Here's the end result, have ridden it about 40 miles and rides like a dream.
Good find. I bought an 80's Rockhopper for messenger work after I got tired of the harsh (over bumpy streets) Cannondale T-400. Rockhopper really soaks up the bumps even with skinnier tires plus has ample eyelets. I put on road-racing handlebar & stem which put too much weight over front wheel, your handlebar/stem is better that way.
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Old 12-18-12, 06:40 AM   #10
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Nice job!
My main ride is a rigid Schwinn mtb that I set up in a similar way, but then proceded to weigh it down with tons of crap for commute duty. About a month ago, I bought a twin to your bike (89 RH Comp, same color) to give the same treatment, but hopefully leave it in svelte mode.
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Old 12-18-12, 11:08 AM   #11
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Nice job! I love my 1990 Rockhopper, though I strayed to a few other bikes for a while. I'm getting ready to put it back into service as my do-it-all bike with a basket and upright bars. Here's mine before I temporarily retired it:

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Old 12-18-12, 10:41 PM   #12
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Nice job! I love my 1990 Rockhopper, though I strayed to a few other bikes for a while. I'm getting ready to put it back into service as my do-it-all bike with a basket and upright bars. Here's mine before I temporarily retired it:

I like that shot, it's so industrial looking, so is the Rockhopper, looks indestructable. I'm surprised how well mine rides now that I have it dialed in. I like it more than I thought, can't wait to go camping with it, it's going to lug 25 lbs or so of camping gear. Maybe less if I do it right, studying how the backpackers do it so I can be as light as possible and comfortable once I get there.
Cheers
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Old 12-22-12, 12:02 PM   #13
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I am very fond of my 98 RH (alu frame, with front shocks) which is my all purpose bike, commuting is nice on rough roads not having to worry about potholes so much, and it is comfortable all day on long day rides and have even toured with it-where with 25lbs or so on the rear it handles very well and the stiffish rear part of the frame gets dampened out with full panniers on.
I dont have drops, but slightly angled back risers on it which combined with bar ends is fairly versatile for hand positions and comfort (not as effective in strong headwinds as drops, but for the rest works well, enough that I can ride it all day and not have any hand wrist issues.)
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Old 12-22-12, 09:26 PM   #14
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I am very fond of my 98 RH (alu frame, with front shocks) which is my all purpose bike, commuting is nice on rough roads not having to worry about potholes so much, and it is comfortable all day on long day rides and have even toured with it-where with 25lbs or so on the rear it handles very well and the stiffish rear part of the frame gets dampened out with full panniers on.
I dont have drops, but slightly angled back risers on it which combined with bar ends is fairly versatile for hand positions and comfort (not as effective in strong headwinds as drops, but for the rest works well, enough that I can ride it all day and not have any hand wrist issues.)
I think the idea of alu frame with front suspension makes a lot of sense for touring. Now with disc brakes becoming more popular on touring bikes it would seem to invite more bikes with front suspension. For example I've been thinking about touring in Germany where they have the big bike path networks--nice & scenic but not always super-smooth. Much like my local bike path where I see quite a few tourists en route to DC--it's mostly smooth but has some badly rough spots which are mostly at the bottoms of hills where one is going fastest & thus they're the most jarring. Sometimes, esp on hot days when a bit dehydrated those bumps literally give me a headache.
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Old 12-22-12, 09:37 PM   #15
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I like it. I think the 1980-90's mountain bikes are about the best value out there for bike builds right now. I'm seeing good examples all over craigslist for $75-150, many with good quality frames.
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Old 12-22-12, 09:41 PM   #16
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I like that shot, it's so industrial looking, so is the Rockhopper, looks indestructable. I'm surprised how well mine rides now that I have it dialed in. I like it more than I thought, can't wait to go camping with it, it's going to lug 25 lbs or so of camping gear. Maybe less if I do it right, studying how the backpackers do it so I can be as light as possible and comfortable once I get there.
Cheers
I like that one too. I'm getting ready to build one with fenders. I have an old Mongoose with a Tang chromoly frame. I never thought I would put fenders on a bike, but all of a sudden I'm thinking they look pretty cool; and it will be nice not to get the road spray up the back.
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Old 12-22-12, 11:46 PM   #17
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Love seeing the old mtbs still in service. Nice builds on both the bikes pictured!

I do have a question: I notice both those bikes have the little (Nashbar?) front rack. I'm thinking of getting one of these to put on my new Salsa Vaya Ti bike. The Vaya fork does not have canti studs (disc) and I'm wondering if the rack would be able to be mounted with clamps around the fork. Do you folks think it would work?
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Old 12-23-12, 02:00 AM   #18
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Love seeing the old mtbs still in service. Nice builds on both the bikes pictured!

I do have a question: I notice both those bikes have the little (Nashbar?) front rack. I'm thinking of getting one of these to put on my new Salsa Vaya Ti bike. The Vaya fork does not have canti studs (disc) and I'm wondering if the rack would be able to be mounted with clamps around the fork. Do you folks think it would work?
I'm sure it would be.fine, especially given the fact that realistically one wouldn't be putting.very much weight on these small racks (a sleeping bag, tent or sleeping mat)
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Old 12-23-12, 02:06 AM   #19
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very nice! you should stop by the drop bar mtb thread http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ar-Conversions
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Old 12-24-12, 10:13 AM   #20
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Love seeing the old mtbs still in service. Nice builds on both the bikes pictured!

I do have a question: I notice both those bikes have the little (Nashbar?) front rack. I'm thinking of getting one of these to put on my new Salsa Vaya Ti bike. The Vaya fork does not have canti studs (disc) and I'm wondering if the rack would be able to be mounted with clamps around the fork. Do you folks think it would work?
Velo Orange makes a very nice front rack for non canti brakes that you might consider.

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Old 12-24-12, 10:18 AM   #21
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I like it. I think the 1980-90's mountain bikes are about the best value out there for bike builds right now. I'm seeing good examples all over craigslist for $75-150, many with good quality frames.
I agree, my 89 Rockhopper was $125.00 and is close to new condition, triple butted frame, very nice components and rides so nice, will do everything for me, camp, adventure bike, commuter, shopping and cruising.
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Old 12-24-12, 03:05 PM   #22
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I notice both those bikes have the little (Nashbar?) front rack. I'm thinking of getting one of these to put on my new Salsa Vaya Ti bike. The Vaya fork does not have canti studs (disc) and I'm wondering if the rack would be able to be mounted with clamps around the fork. Do you folks think it would work?
Staepj1 modified one to mount by clamped on brackets. I kind of think that two clamps would be sufficient for a light load.
http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/p...id=277469&v=1v
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