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Tutor me on vintage Trek MTB

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Tutor me on vintage Trek MTB

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Old 11-21-17, 05:47 PM
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SimplySycles1
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Tutor me on vintage Trek MTB

Hi all,


I have a reasonable knowledge of '80s sport touring, currently have a '83 600 as a commuter but I have always been curious about the same time frame MTBs.


What years / models do I look for to be comparable in quality to the 510/610/710? (ie no high ten stays) What year did the frames stop being all lugged? Any specific model and year would be a grail bike?


Thanks in advance for the help


Ruben in Los Angeles
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Old 11-21-17, 08:56 PM
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bargainguy
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Trek made all road bikes until '82, when they got the idea (like a lot of other manufacturers) that they could cash in on the burgeoning MTB bandwagon.

'83 introduced the 850 MTB, with Tange cromoly OS double-butted main frame and cromoly fork & stays. '84 saw three MTBs, the 830, 850 and 890, with Reynolds 501AT or 531AT. I believe the MTBs went lugless in '86.

Early Trek MTBs were just OK IMO. Lugged or lugless, they started out slow, then built up their line as the MTB craze took hold.

As far as a grail bike, I assume you mean steel rather than alu or carbon. I like the late 80's / 90's 9xx series. I have a '98 950 which is pretty sweet - triple butted TrueTemper OX Comp II. They're not the lightest MTBs, but they're really solid, and I sell a bunch of 'em.
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Old 11-21-17, 09:17 PM
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Colnago Mixte
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I once stripped all the parts off one of those (a '97 930 Singletrack I believe) down to the bare frame, then sanded it down to paint it.

I was shocked at how light the bare frame on the thing was, it was just a few pounds, probably one of the lightest components on the entire bike. I imagine you could build one up to a feather weight bike with the right components. The problem is that these come stock with some really heavy wheels and components that don't do a nice steel frame like this justice.
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Old 11-21-17, 09:34 PM
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Last lugged frames were 1993. A 9XX would be sweet.


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Old 11-21-17, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Colnago Mixte View Post
I once stripped all the parts off one of those (a '97 930 Singletrack I believe) down to the bare frame, then sanded it down to paint it.

I was shocked at how light the bare frame on the thing was, it was just a few pounds, probably one of the lightest components on the entire bike. I imagine you could build one up to a feather weight bike with the right components. The problem is that these come stock with some really heavy wheels and components that don't do a nice steel frame like this justice.
I also have a 930. It is an excellent bike. I set it up as a tourer, and canít fault it at all.
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Old 11-21-17, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
Last lugged frames were 1993. A 9XX would be sweet.

Rad! You donít see too many 990s around. Thatís maybe not my grail, but certainly on my bucket list.

My own grail vintage MTB is the 1986 Trek 850. Mostly because itís pink. One day I will find one and itíll replace my Ď85 Stumpjumper.

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Old 11-22-17, 02:03 AM
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Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but don't all the 900 series steel Singletracks from the 90's have the same frame, just nicer components on the top tier models? Or does the 990 have a different frame than say a 930?
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Old 11-22-17, 05:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Colnago Mixte View Post
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but don't all the 900 series steel Singletracks from the 90's have the same frame, just nicer components on the top tier models? Or does the 990 have a different frame than say a 930?
No there were differences. IIRC the 990 had a heat treated frame, and they all had different forks. I forget the other details but I'm sure someone else will chime in. The 900 series are my favorite of all older mtbs, all are great rides, imo.
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Old 11-22-17, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by bargainguy View Post
'83 introduced the 850 MTB, with Tange cromoly OS double-butted main frame and cromoly fork & stays. '84 saw three MTBs, the 830, 850 and 890, with Reynolds 501AT or 531AT.
The 890 was marketed as a "city bike" (probably would be called a "hybrid" these days) with narrower tires and different gearing than the off-road models. The first 850s used Tange Champion tubes, then Reynolds 531AT, and later Tange Prestige tubing.
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Old 11-22-17, 12:02 PM
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Some years the 900 series frames were identical and only the forks were different. The tube sets changed from year to year, and really the parts hung on the frame likely make a bigger impact than any frame or fork differences. I have a 93 930 that I'm slowly swapping to XT.

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Old 11-22-17, 01:06 PM
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I have a ‘92 970 and ‘95 930, my wife has a 920 and son in law has a 930. I’ve converted mine to dropbar bikes, the 930 has 8spd brifters and 700x35 tires, ‘970 has 8 spd barends.
Both great on trails.
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