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  1. #1
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    Soliciting advice, suggestions, criticism of older Super V upgrade plans

    New forum member here, been mountain biking since about '90 but haven't seriously ridden in over 15 years. Was really into it in mid to late '90s. Owned a 1993 Cannondale Delta V full suspension, then picked up a mid-90s Mountain Cycle San Andreas frame and built it up myself, sold the Delta V, raced San Andreas XC and DH, then San Andreas was stolen (with over $5K into it), and I got out of the scene for a while. Picked up my current bike, a 1998 Super V 600, off ebay in about 2004. I致e put maybe 700 miles on it since then. Now that I have a second son on the way (first son is about to be 3 years old), it痴 time to get my old ass back in shape (I知 46). Over the past couple months I致e ridden maybe 200 miles including a few 10-15 mile road rides. Most of the rides have been around 5 miles with my son in his little kid cart attached to my Super V. After towing about 45-50 lbs of kid & carrier I feel like I知 flying when I head out solo. Soreness/numbness in my wrists, shoulders, lower back, ass, etc. is starting to subside (especially after dialing in my stem length & angle). Now I知 ready to hit some singletrack and continue upgrades to the bike. I知 in Arizona so trails are dry & rocky.


    Oldschool Super V as it sits now:



    3x setup with Shimano XT front & rear derailleurs, 44-32-22T front rings and 8 speed 11-30T rear cassette.



    Shimano XT levers & CODA V-brakes. Love the levers, hate the v-brakes.


    Recently switched out the old OEM CODA cranks for a set of used RaceFace Next Forged cranks (the ones with the gimmicky forged & 田arbon fiber inserts). Not my favorite but for $50 local craigslist pickup they are better than the rickety old bent CODAs.Probably OEM bottom bracket, square taper, I致e never touched it but it still spins free & smooth.


    Switched out the old OEM P-Bone 60mm travel headshock (coil spring & elastomer, oil dampening) for a Super Fatty air-oil 80mm travel off of ebay. Wanted more travel but just as important wanted the disc brake mounts.Damn Super Fatty isn稚 holding air may try to rebuild myself or just send it in to Mendon Cyclesmith.


    Still have the OEM Fox Vanilla 5.75 rear coil spring shock mounted but just last week I picked up a nearly new 6.5 Fox Float Factory Kashima. Can稚 believe the weight difference 438g vs. 209g! I値l have to drill the forward mounting tabs 0.75 further forward and shave the tabs. Have investigated that process here on MTBR.



    Rims are Mavic X139 559X19 (19mm internal width), Shimano Deore hubs, Panaracer Fire XCPro 2.1 tires. Also ditched my old clipless pedals and slapped on a pair of Nukeproof Horizon platforms this has been the best upgrade so far.


    I壇 really like to run a 1x setup with an 11-speed rear. The thing is that I like the higher gears with my 44T ring when I知 running on the paved bike paths with & without my son in tow.I can count the number of times I致e used a granny gear front chainring on one hand.I can easily live in my 32T front ring for nearly everything except higher speed cruising when I jump to the 44T.



    So I知 thinking of the following items please tell me what you think is a good idea or bad based on your experience:



    RaceFace Turbine Cinch cranks 30mm spindle, RaceFace Cinch BSA30 bottom bracket, RaceFace narrow-wide Cinch ring, 38T.



    Shimano XT CS-M8000 rear cassette, 11 speed, 11-40T or 11-42T.


    Shimano XT RD-M80000 11 speed rear derailleur (GS cage for 1x setup).


    Shimano XT SL-M8000 I-Spec II 11 speed rear shifter.



    Shimano XT/Ultegra CN-HG701 QL Chain for 11-speed.



    Shimano XT BR-M8000 disc brake set.


    Shimano XT SM-RT86 6-bolt Ice-Tech rotors (180mm front, 160mm rear).


    Sun Inferno 25 wheelset (26 of course) with Shimano XT 756 front & rear hubs with 6-bolt setup and quick release axles. The Inferno 25s are 20.3mm internal width & 25mm outside width. I only want to run a 2.2 or 2.3 tire. I used to run a 2.5 when downhilling my San Andreas and that was on 19mm rims! I致e gone back & forth on tubeless tires and right now I知 pro-tube and anti-tubeless. Tubeless just sounds like a pain in the ass. School me if I知 wrong. Would mean a new choice of rim.



    What do you all think? I知 probably looking at a good $800 all-in and that is if I can get a 15% off first order discount from a certain website.I致e already dropped about $470 on the upgrades so far.And all this will be going into a 20 year old bike I picked up 14 years ago on ebay for $400 shipped.Makes perfect sense.


    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Soliciting advice, suggestions, criticism of older Super V upgrade plans-b1-new.jpg  

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    Soliciting advice, suggestions, criticism of older Super V upgrade plans-delta2.jpg  

    Soliciting advice, suggestions, criticism of older Super V upgrade plans-mtn2.jpg  


  2. #2
    BOOM goes the dynamite!
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    My first thought is no. $800 will get you pretty far looking at a gently used bike from the last 5 years. Keep the current bike for tow duty if you want, but don't dump any more into that thing.

  3. #3
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    Check out the brake forum as there have been people with issues on m8000 brakes (namely the pump-up problem). There are newer XT 8020 brakes but they are twice the price and 2x the pistons. You might want to consider Zee brakes. I'm not saying don't get the XT just be aware of the issue.

    if you want a cheaper option: SLX brakes, RT66 rotors, keep cranks as is

    of course totally up to you, sounds like you know your stuff and enjoy quality components as well as keeping ole' steeds going! I put a good deal of money into an old frame myself, cheaper than a new bike anyway.

    As for tubeless, it's great but not a necessity. If you want lower psi without pinch flats, or you get alot of flats it makes more sense.

    Welcome aboard!

  4. #4
    Hardtail Steel Forever
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    I can completely relate and I'm a person who keeps bikes going forever, I've built up 2 min-90's 26in bikes in the past 2 years and another 2012 26in bike just prior to those. But, I'm having a hard time coming up with a recommendation. $800 feels like a lot more to me to sink into this old of a bike.

    One thing you might consider is just converting the cranket to 1x or 2x, then throwing a 10 or 11 speed cassette on the back. You can get the cost down quite a bit right there and you don't have to deal with RF's garbage 30mm BB. There are good 30mm BB's, RF's is not one of them.

    Additionally, the SLX groupset is very usable and can be quite a discount over XT especially if you get anything lightly used on ebay or craigslist.

    Otherwise, I might suggest demoing or renting some fairly-recent mid level bikes and see how you like the feel of them and if that's something you might enjoy more than upgrading everything on this one. At least that way, you'll have some idea what you're going to be dealing with.
    WTB: Med Bontrager Ti Lite, PM Me...

  5. #5
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    Do not put any more money into that bike except what is required to keep it rideable.

    BTW, I have the XT M8000 brakes on 5 bikes. Over the years, on those 10 brakes, I've had problems with one and it was covered by warrantee.
    The M8020 is a completely different 4 piston brake.

  6. #6
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    I must agree with the above posters, don't put any real money in the Super-V.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    Do not put any more money into that bike except what is required to keep it rideable.

    BTW, I have the XT M8000 brakes on 5 bikes. Over the years, on those 10 brakes, I've had problems with one and it was covered by warrantee.
    The M8020 is a completely different 4 piston brake.
    good to know. if you are going to do 1 upgrade make it brakes.

  8. #8
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    I appreciate the replies! For better or for worse, I just really like the Super V. It's really in mint shape and I'm a firm believer in holding onto and taking care of things and they'll take care of you. My off-road truck is a 2004 with 165K miles and my little run-around sports car is a 1998 with 163K miles. But I did trade in the 1963 wife for a 1976...so I'm not totally opposed to change.

    As far as dumping money into this ancient bike, the way I figure it is that nearly all the parts will be transferrable to a new frame if I ever feel like upgrading the actual bike. I really have no interest in a 29 but I'd consider a 27.5". The truth is that 26" has always worked fine for me....if it ain't broke then don't fix it. I'm at a point in my life where the budget isn't the most important consideration and another $800 is no big deal if I get what I want. I also want to go with all new components - I've been watching ebay and I can get an XT M8000 disc brake setup for about $140....for another $40 I can get new with a warranty. It's a no-brainer.

    I've researched keeping the RaceFace cranks and putting a single narrow-wide ring on, but all I can find to fit my ancient 94mm BCD 5-bolt setup is a 32T Wolf Creek narrow-wide. That's literally all I can find. I think 32T is too small for my needs. I've done all the ratio calculations and right now my current range is 0.73 to 4.00. With a 32T ring and an 11-42T cassette my range would be 0.76 to 2.91. With a 38T single ring and the same cassette my range would be 0.90 to 3.45....much closer to my current 4.00 top end. I guess I could always buy the Wolf Creek 32T and see how it rides.

    I've also seen some bad reviews on the RaceFace BBs. I'll stay away from them no matter which way I go.

    Any opinions on the Sun Ringle Inferno 25s? Bicycle Wheel Warehouse is offering a set with XT hubs for only $165 (plus $30 delivery). I'd love to go full-bore and get some Chris King hubs and lighter rims but I really don't want to drop $500+ on rims. I have a hard time mentally justifying spending more than twice the $$$ on one rim vs. another when it really won't make any difference to me at my basic level of riding. But you can't beat that King freewheel sound... Maybe I'll reconsider this. Anyone know of great deals on 26" rims right now?

  9. #9
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    There are quite a few MTBR forum posts from the past that may be of help:
    https://www.google.com/search?q=1998...w=1920&bih=949

  10. #10
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    My story is very similar to yours; respectable cat1 racer in the early 90s, off the bike (and out of shape) for years, kids, started riding then racing again at about age 44 moving back into the top of masters cat1 xc and cx. I also still ride a 26er most of the time, so I'm not against the old stuff (and I keep a lot of old stuff forever too). When I got back into riding, my main bike was a Clark Kent ti frame with all my good old race parts, and I was very attached to it and liked it a lot. As I got back into racing I bought a used Kona Kula Dlx 29er for about $850 on ebay, and I immediately realized I was faster on the 29er. I cracked the kona frame after 2 seasons and went with a carbon frame, and then last summer bought a carbon fs bike for the rougher races. Over time that ti 26er felt less and less good, and handled 'weird' compared to the modern bikes. I put all the parts onto a ti Raleigh frame (one of the Tomac signature ones made in Russia), which I like a little better, but still is not my favorite bike. I do most of my training on a 26er univega ht I built up with spare parts (I actually kind of like that bike).

    All that being said, I'm quite a bit faster on either of my 29er race bikes, and the newer Fox or Rockshox are mostly really great. My advice is to keep the old V as-is (especially since it's in mint cond), and use that budget towards a modern bike, they really have improved, - I would rather race a 29er hardtail than a 26er fs. I think I paid $900 on CL for my kids no-name carbon hardtail 29er, with xt and slx, stans/hope wheels, - you can get a lot of bike for around $1k in the used market.
    carry clippers! cut something off the trail every time you ride.

  11. #11
    BOOM goes the dynamite!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    I appreciate the replies! For better or for worse, I just really like the Super V. It's really in mint shape and I'm a firm believer in holding onto and taking care of things and they'll take care of you. My off-road truck is a 2004 with 165K miles and my little run-around sports car is a 1998 with 163K miles. But I did trade in the 1963 wife for a 1976...so I'm not totally opposed to change.
    Taking care of it, sure. Spending $$$ on upgrades, I can't see it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    As far as dumping money into this ancient bike, the way I figure it is that nearly all the parts will be transferrable to a new frame if I ever feel like upgrading the actual bike. I really have no interest in a 29 but I'd consider a 27.5". The truth is that 26" has always worked fine for me....if it ain't broke then don't fix it. I'm at a point in my life where the budget isn't the most important consideration and another $800 is no big deal if I get what I want. I also want to go with all new components - I've been watching ebay and I can get an XT M8000 disc brake setup for about $140....for another $40 I can get new with a warranty. It's a no-brainer.
    Except why not just upgrade the bike by buying a nice used bike that someone else already spent the money to upgrade and realized it's money you don't get back.

    Or you could get the SLX M7000 brakes, which perform basically identical for $120 or less...now that's a no brainer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    I've researched keeping the RaceFace cranks and putting a single narrow-wide ring on, but all I can find to fit my ancient 94mm BCD 5-bolt setup is a 32T Wolf Creek narrow-wide. That's literally all I can find. I think 32T is too small for my needs. I've done all the ratio calculations and right now my current range is 0.73 to 4.00. With a 32T ring and an 11-42T cassette my range would be 0.76 to 2.91. With a 38T single ring and the same cassette my range would be 0.90 to 3.45....much closer to my current 4.00 top end. I guess I could always buy the Wolf Creek 32T and see how it rides.
    Your gear ratios are unique to you...no clue here, but I still run 2x on one bike for a bigger range. Works great even if it's not en vogue.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    I've also seen some bad reviews on the RaceFace BBs. I'll stay away from them no matter which way I go.
    They're OK, but yeah. They don't last me but a year or so either...but then again, they often come with the crank, so why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    Any opinions on the Sun Ringle Inferno 25s? Bicycle Wheel Warehouse is offering a set with XT hubs for only $165 (plus $30 delivery). I'd love to go full-bore and get some Chris King hubs and lighter rims but I really don't want to drop $500+ on rims. I have a hard time mentally justifying spending more than twice the $$$ on one rim vs. another when it really won't make any difference to me at my basic level of riding. But you can't beat that King freewheel sound... Maybe I'll reconsider this. Anyone know of great deals on 26" rims right now?
    The rims...well, there are plenty of others I'd choose first since I'm good with tubeless and don't like my rims that narrow (about 23-25mm ID for 2.3 is what I've found works best, but this is a VERY opinion/feel based thing). But odds are good when you look for a bike, it'll come with wheels...sometimes they're nice.

    ------------------

    The real point is that other old saying, "you don't know what you don't know". Until you ride a more modern bike it's hard to know just how much better they can be. More stable, climb better with less pedal bob, and on and on. If there's a demo event in your area, do yourself a favor and go.

    Then there's the emotional part...which is what I think you're struggling with. I totally get that. Just last year I finally went ahead and disassembled the first bike I ever built from scratch ('98 hardtail if that tells you anything). I tend to hang onto things too long, too. And that's OK. Just at some point I realized it was all about sentimental value and no matter how much money I threw at it, it wouldn't perform how I wanted it to. I got a new bike and am now making new memories and forming an emotional attachment to it as well. Such is the life of a mountain biker, I suppose.

  12. #12
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    sounds like a nice project you have going on. I am 60 years old have old school and new school bikes 26"650b and 29".First mtb was a 2001 Trek fuel 90, wish I could get that bike back I suggest you upgrade to tubeless ready or UST wheels and tires with sealant, why? it will vastly improve what little suspension you have. good luck finding those OEM with 9mm QR, option is to use adapters or go with a custom build. Trust me? tubeless is awesome, try it?

  13. #13
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    Turn the Cannondale into a gravel grinder/commuter and keep the 3X setup. Minimal investment needed. Take the funds you were going to spend and dump that into a nice used modern bike for the singletrack. Why settle on one bike when you can have 2!

  14. #14
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    Again, I appreciate the replies!

    Now you guys have me researching modern geometry and different frames that may catch my interest. I'm going to work up all the typical measurement stats on my current Super V to compare to newer frame parameters. Maybe I should keep the V like it is and make the jump to a 29. I'll have to surf the interwebs for used 29s and see what's out there.

    I'm so many years out of the loop - can you guys list some good used 29 make & model candidates? I'm 5' 10" and rollin around 200 lbs right now but the goal is to get down to about 185 in a couple months of serious cardio exercise.

  15. #15
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    or 29+, or 27.5, or 27.5+...

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    ...... But I did trade in the 1963 wife for a 1976...so I'm not totally opposed to change.
    I'm thinking about trading for something newer too....was it worth the investment?
    Bicycles don't have motors.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by mileslong View Post
    i'm thinking about trading for something newer too....was it worth the investment?
    Yes!

  18. #18
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    I've jettisoned the front derailleur and I've been riding with just my 32T ring up front and the original 8-speed rear cassette (11-30T). I'm definitely under-geared and will eventually have to upgrade cranks so I can run a 38T ring. Now I'm thinking I really don't need a rear cassette that goes all the way up to 40 or 42 but I'll be installing a 10 or 11 speed anyway.

    Just ordered a wheel set from Colorado Cyclist. Stan's MK3 Arch Disc Rims with Shimano XT M8000 centerlock disc QR hubs. $401 delivered to my door, not bad compared to everything else I was looking at. Changing another tube this past weekend helped make me decide to make the jump to tubeless.

    Still have to drill out the forward shock mounting tabs to fit the 6.5" Fox Factory Float. Might find time to get to that this week.
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  19. #19
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    I had a 96 Super V in mango. Kept it until 04. Honesty, I tried to like it and kept it in good condition but once I spent a little time on newer bikes (I知 talking 2004 newer now) I was very happy to see it go.

    Try some demo days. It doesn稚 cost anything and you might be surprised how much you enjoy riding a modern bike.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Bicycling is politics by other means.

  20. #20
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    Bike geometry has changed/improved so dramatically since that Cannondale was made that I would definitely put the budget toward a new bike. For $800 you could buy an entry level hardtail 29er that would ride way better in virtually every situation.
    whatever...

  21. #21
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    I am keeping an eye out for newer frames, will probably be on one later this year. Would like to do a complete build again from the ground up. But I値l keep it 26 and full suspension. I have no desire for an entry level hardtail. Will just put all these old parts back on the Super V and have it as a spare friend bike. All I need is to find something that inspires me. Until then I値l build up old Super V.

  22. #22
    Hardtail Steel Forever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegill View Post
    I am keeping an eye out for newer frames, will probably be on one later this year. Would like to do a complete build again from the ground up. But I値l keep it 26 and full suspension. I have no desire for an entry level hardtail. Will just put all these old parts back on the Super V and have it as a spare friend bike. All I need is to find something that inspires me. Until then I値l build up old Super V.
    Personal suggestion, look for ~2009 - 2013 Santa Cruz Blur LT2, heckler, superlight, depending on what geometry and travel you want, and other similar bikes. They're very capable and can take most of the components you have except the fork, most likely.

    Sounds like you have this frame figured out for the time being, so just have fun on it.
    WTB: Med Bontrager Ti Lite, PM Me...

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