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1996 Specialized rockhopper upgrade options

Old 06-25-17, 02:28 PM
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Shazam96
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1996 Specialized rockhopper upgrade options

I bought my bike new. I have original shifters and brakes. Bike is in good shape. Looking for ideas on upgrading components. I'm a weekend rider.
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Old 06-25-17, 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Shazam96 View Post
I bought my bike new. I have original shifters and brakes. Bike is in good shape. Looking for ideas on upgrading components. I'm a weekend rider.
Kind of hard to suggest upgrades without knowing what is on there now. Give a detailed component list if you want helpful recs.
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Old 06-26-17, 10:06 AM
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For a Rockhopper that is 21 years old , I would suggest new shifting and brake cables and housing, service the hub bearings, replace the brake pads, grips and tires/tubes if they need it , as well as ensuring the wheels are true

Spending money outside of that is throwing good money after bad ---- In other words, the best "upgrade" is to ensure it rides like new again , -- updated parts likely won't add much to the experience
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Old 06-26-17, 12:02 PM
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Upgrade it by replacing everything on it with a new bike.
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Old 06-26-17, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by dminor View Post
Upgrade it by replacing everything on it with a new bike.
^^^This
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Old 03-27-18, 07:54 AM
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You can put lipstick on a pig...

Here's the deal...Road bikes and other rigid fork bike types have remained virtually unchanged for the past 25 years. Other than maybe some nicer components available now vs then.

However, in the past 25 years mountain bikes have changed drastically in suspension, geometry and components. That's why it's not worth throwing money at a mountain bike from 1996.
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Old 03-27-18, 09:35 AM
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I was riding a 1990 Fuji Thrill for a little while on local trails. I had looked at upgrading parts but things have changed enough where it was going to be a challenge to find components to fit it. For example to go from a rigid fork to a suspension fork was challenging because the fork was a 1 inch and had a quill stem. finding a shock for a 1 inch stem and going thread less was not convenient. If you can keep the bike as it is just buy a newer style bike that's the way I would go. I got a fuji nevada for our local trails. it seems like the frame design and fork are more suited for the task than what I had previously. Head tube angle, frame geometry and wheel sizes etc in my opinion make for a more stable and comfortable ride.
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Old 03-27-18, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Good job chasing off the OP. Old Stumpy's and Rockhoppers are cult type bikes for a reason, they ride great.

I just picked up a 1996 Rockhopper off the list of craig (13.5"!!!) and it's going to have to be completely rebuilt, but I don't mind this. It will go nicely with my 1990 Rockhopper (14.5")and my 1996 Hardrock (15.5")
I agree! Here's my cult classic.
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Old 03-27-18, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by DEW21 View Post
I agree! Here's my cult classic.
sweet ride
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Old 03-27-18, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Shazam96 View Post
I bought my bike new. I have original shifters and brakes. Bike is in good shape. Looking for ideas on upgrading components. I'm a weekend rider.
What do you want to use it for? That matters quite a bit in what you want to do/with it. If you're thinking mild trails or crushed gravel trail to trail or whatever, all those comments saying you need a new bike with full suspension are meaningless. Heck, maybe you're just taking it out on dirt roads and MUPs and just want to throw some slicks on it and call it done. Is there anything on it that doesn't work? How are the tires? Are they original? Rubber and where you contact it (saddle, pedals, grips) will probably get you the most bang for your buck as far as upgrades (assuming any of those things don't work for you now) if it does meet your needs as you want to use it and nothing is actually broken.
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Old 03-27-18, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
The only thing I bought it for was the frame and fork, and I'm not sure I'll keep the rigid fork on it, but it's an option.
I have everything to rebuild it how I want it. On top of all that, I like it.
Sorry, I was talking to OP. People were telling him he had the completely wrong bike and needed to buy a brand new one. I could see that advice if he was going to take it on some advanced trails with significant drops, but it helps to know what someone wants a bike for, before we start throwing random advice at him and tell him his bike is garbage or whatever they were saying. I agree, old stumpy's are really nice for certain applications - I have a early 90's sequioa I keep meaning to build up and it's essentially a rockhopper with the canti studs moved to support 700c wheels and a few extra braze on's added. Really nice stuff.
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Old 03-28-18, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Oh, you mean aluminum framed bikes?


I disagree. I like rigid steel frames and classic mountain bikes. If I so desire, I have a period correct Rockshox in the correct size for this frame. I also have period correct Deore XT components as well.
I have a couple of sets of 26" wheels, one set I built in the early nineties and the other set came on a Bianchi Super Grizzly.
You must be very proud of yourself...
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Old 03-28-18, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Good job chasing off the OP. Old Stumpy's and Rockhoppers are cult type bikes for a reason, they ride great.

I just picked up a 1996 Rockhopper off the list of craig (13.5"!!!) and it's going to have to be completely rebuilt, but I don't mind this. It will go nicely with my 1990 Rockhopper (14.5")and my 1996 Hardrock (15.5")
Classic MTB right there. Stumpies rock. I have a rigid ‘97 Trek 7000 that is my favorite trail bike. These classic MTBs were hot back in the day and still are today to those that appreciate them.
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Old 03-28-18, 01:56 PM
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That you wax poetic about your old MTB...

If the guy is a weekend rider on trails, it only makes sense to purchase a new bike and not waste money upgrading it.
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Old 03-28-18, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by DEW21 View Post
I agree! Here's my cult classic.

Unbelievable how good that bike looks and how well the black accessories contrast against the sky blue.
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Old 03-28-18, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Back to perspective. You like the latest and greatest, I like the feel of a steel frame. I also like a product that fails gracefully rather than catastrophically, so that leaves carbon off the table. I don't like the harshness of aluminum either.
Ti feels buzzy but it's still a nice ride.
But steel, steel is smooth, it flexes enough but not too much. It feels natural, like love. It just fits.
There are a plenty of current model hardtails out there made of steel.
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Old 03-29-18, 08:34 AM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Who are you to tell ANYONE that what they like isn't good enough to fix?
I don’t recall doing so.

I also don’t care what you ride.

And you don’t need to justify it.

But if you ARE going to explain it, I will point out faulty logic if I see it. And using steel as a reason to choose a 90s HT frame over a current HT frames does make any sense, because there are plenty of current HT frames made of steel.

There are a lot of major differences between a HT from 1990 and 2018. Availability of steel is not one of them.

Last edited by Kapusta; 03-29-18 at 08:39 AM.
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Old 03-29-18, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
You can put lipstick on a pig...

Here's the deal...Road bikes and other rigid fork bike types have remained virtually unchanged for the past 25 years. Other than maybe some nicer components available now vs then.

However, in the past 25 years mountain bikes have changed drastically in suspension, geometry and components. That's why it's not worth throwing money at a mountain bike from 1996.
So with all the modern technology out there I should get rid of my Sansui AU 919, or my Yamaha CR 2040. No thanx!

I know a guy who works at the Bike Department at REI and he rebuilt a mid 90's Rockhopper, and it's a beauty. No kid either.
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Old 03-29-18, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
All we have is our perspective. You, he, I and all that. Yes I ride mountain bikes of a certain vintage, lots of others do too. Like the OP for instance.
Back to perspective. You like the latest and greatest, I like the feel of a steel frame. I also like a product that fails gracefully rather than catastrophically, so that leaves carbon off the table. I don't like the harshness of aluminum either.
Ti feels buzzy but it's still a nice ride.
But steel, steel is smooth, it flexes enough but not too much. It feels natural, like love. It just fits.

Think I was waxing before???
You can still buy steel mountain bikes...But with better geometry and suspension these days they ride ooooohhh so much better.
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Old 03-29-18, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by StarBiker View Post
So with all the modern technology out there I should get rid of my Sansui AU 919, or my Yamaha CR 2040. No thanx!
LOL!!! You are comparing apples to oranges.
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Old 03-29-18, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
You can still buy steel mountain bikes...But with better geometry and suspension these days they ride ooooohhh so much better.
But again, that depends on his purpose. The new poster got chased away being told his bike was junk before he could even tell us what he wanted to use the bike for. Maybe he didn't need suspension. If he was going to use it as a weekend pleasure ride (many newbies often buy mountain bikes because that's what they think they need when they'll never be taken on anything more challenging than an MUP), getting it working and putting slicks on it would have been good enough. The weight of front suspension would have been wasted. Maybe a hybrid or a flatbar roadie would have better fit his needs or maybe not. We don't know. If he was going to take it out on trails, I get what you're saying, but we have no idea what he wanted to use it for because he was immediately told his bike was garbage and he'd wasted his money on a poor decision as soon as he posted. Not everyone (especially those just starting out and new to the sport) has the money or the need for the latest and greatest.
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Old 03-29-18, 03:01 PM
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Originally Posted by himespau View Post
But again, that depends on his purpose. The new poster got chased away being told his bike was junk before he could even tell us what he wanted to use the bike for. Maybe he didn't need suspension. If he was going to use it as a weekend pleasure ride (many newbies often buy mountain bikes because that's what they think they need when they'll never be taken on anything more challenging than an MUP), getting it working and putting slicks on it would have been good enough. The weight of front suspension would have been wasted. Maybe a hybrid or a flatbar roadie would have better fit his needs or maybe not. We don't know. If he was going to take it out on trails, I get what you're saying, but we have no idea what he wanted to use it for because he was immediately told his bike was garbage and he'd wasted his money on a poor decision as soon as he posted. Not everyone (especially those just starting out and new to the sport) has the money or the need for the latest and greatest.
I don’t think the OP was “chased off”. He/she just never bothered to respond again.

It happens all the time on this forum: somone asks a question, are asked for more info (in this case what they use the bike for and what the current build is), never respond, but the thread goes on anyway.
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Old 03-29-18, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
lol!!! You are comparing apples to oranges.
bs!
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Old 03-29-18, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
I don’t think the OP was “chased off”. He/she just never bothered to respond again.

It happens all the time on this forum: somone asks a question, are asked for more info (in this case what they use the bike for and what the current build is), never respond, but the thread goes on anyway.
So they can listen to people *****. I wouldn't have responded either.
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Old 03-29-18, 07:49 PM
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It really depends on what you are trying to do, how much you are willing to spend, and how much of the work you can do yourself.
I still want that Gary Fisher Grateful Dead Hoo Koo! I still wish I kept my perfect early 90's Trek 750 with the Tru Temper frame. I still kick myself for flipping that bike.
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