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  1. #1
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    New question here. Need help upgrading my Marin Alpine Trail to Shimano XT components

    Want to start by saying this is a great forum and there's a huge wealth of knowledge available on here. I'm very new to mountain biking and I recently picked up an '09-'10 (I believe) Marin Alpine Trail. I want to upgrade the cassette, crank, front and rear derailer, and shifters to Shimano XT components. I'm also going to upgrade the wheelset... but I'm just going to be patient and snag a set that someone is letting go for cheap.

    I've got everything priced up on chainreactioncycles. com and there are multiple choices on some of these components and I'm not sure which ones are correct for my mtb. I'm hoping maybe some of you can help point me in the right direction.

    Shifters: chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20701
    Cassette - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20677 - getting the 11-34 setup
    Crank - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20679 - is this the correct one? Do they make an all black?... I can't seem to find a triple in all black.
    Rear Derailer - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20699 - they make a shadow, a long cage, medium cage... not sure which one is correct. I was thinking of picking up this model in the medium cage. Thoughts?
    Front Derailer - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20684 - this is the big one with most questions. I don't know what milimeter ring to get, not sure if I get a direct, top, or bottom mount either? Any help is much needed.

    This is what I'm looking at so far. I'm not sure if I need to go ahead and pickup a chain too or if the one currently on my bike will work. Also any other accessories that I'm leaving out? If there's some more info that you need from me before you can point me in the right direction, then please fire away and I'll answer it to the best of my abilities. Thanks in advanced for any and all suggestions/help.

    ps - I put a space at the .com on the links because it wouldn't let me post web addresses. Just copy and past in the address bar and delete that space for the link to work.

  2. #2
    the half breed devil
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    yes, it would be a very good idea to get a new chain. a nine speed chain if you're upgrading to XT level shifters and derailleurs.

    to the best of my recollection, shimano has never made an all black XT crankset.

    the front derailleur looks to be bottom pull based on the image on marin's website.

    here's a link to the bike you have now and a list of its stock components:

    MARIN BIKES 2010**|** Mountain HT**|**29er **|**Alpine Trail 29er

    somebody else should help you in regards to XT rear derailleurs, my knowledge on shadow, short and long cages is kind of iffy.

  3. #3
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    Great, thanks for that info! I'll search and add a chain to my cart. I'll confirm that I'm picking up a bottom pull front DR as well. Should I get a particular millimeter ring size or get the unisize?

    Any info on the back DR is much appreciated. Thanks again.

  4. #4
    the half breed devil
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    somebody else will have to help you with millimeter or ring sizes.

  5. #5
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    Have you thought about sram stuff? Don't get me wrong I like Shimano stuff but sram shifts better imho.
    If your going to keep your triple ring setup then you will need a long cage derailleur at the back, I am not sure if the new shadow drive comes in 9 speed or not, they are pretty cool they have a clutch to stop chain slap, chain slap incase your wondering in that awful sound you hear while skipping over rough terrain and your chain slaps your frame. If you size your chain right and run a minimum of a SLX or XT chain slap isn't that bad.
    I am pretty sure the newer front derailleurs support both top and bottom pull. I would get new brakes those mechanical are going to suck. If your on chainreaction they have huge sales on right now, you could get yourself a nice set of brakes and rotors as well, stopping is just as important as going forward
    Giant XTC 2 29er
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  6. #6
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    Oh and if your getting new wheels make sure everything you buy is 9-10 compatible since your old one is 8 speed iirc 9-10 speed stuff requires a different dish on the rear wheel and I don't think it will fit on the 8 speed freehub anyways. I could be wrong on the dish part but I remember seeing that 8 speed is not compatible with 9-10 speed cassettes and ****.
    Almost forgot make sure you get some sort of measuring tool or see if the old equipment has the size on it, the front derailleur comes in many flavours based on tube size its bolting to. I bought myself a set of digital callipers from the local tool supply place for like 20 bucks and measured every part I ordered to make sure it was right.

    Good luck and have fun.
    Giant XTC 2 29er
    KHS Flagstaff 29er FS
    Neon Bow Trials Bike
    Norco Fluid 9.2 29er FS
    Norco BIGFOOT FATTY

  7. #7
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    As you are a new rider, the current components on that bike are decent except for the fork. So, the things I would replace that have long term value are the fork and wheel set, and maybe the brakes if you go down hill more than up. These three things will transfer to a future frame better than what will soon be old 9 speed stuff. I recommend the best 15mm thru axel Fox 120mm fork shimmed down to 100mm that you can afford. A wheel set that has: a 15mm front hub; a rear hub that can be converted to 12x142; and rims that have a 22mm or wider inner diameter. Then current year XT brakes with a 180mm front rotor and 160mm rear rotor.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by fahza29er View Post
    Have you thought about sram stuff? Don't get me wrong I like Shimano stuff but sram shifts better imho.
    If your going to keep your triple ring setup then you will need a long cage derailleur at the back, I am not sure if the new shadow drive comes in 9 speed or not, they are pretty cool they have a clutch to stop chain slap, chain slap incase your wondering in that awful sound you hear while skipping over rough terrain and your chain slaps your frame. If you size your chain right and run a minimum of a SLX or XT chain slap isn't that bad.
    I am pretty sure the newer front derailleurs support both top and bottom pull. I would get new brakes those mechanical are going to suck. If your on chainreaction they have huge sales on right now, you could get yourself a nice set of brakes and rotors as well, stopping is just as important as going forward
    What's the equivalent sram model that I should be looking at? I'm open to looking at that as well, I just started looking at shimano because that's what's mostly on my bike now. Thanks for all of you input as well.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by PB Matrix View Post
    As you are a new rider, the current components on that bike are decent except for the fork. So, the things I would replace that have long term value are the fork and wheel set, and maybe the brakes if you go down hill more than up. These three things will transfer to a future frame better than what will soon be old 9 speed stuff. I recommend the best 15mm thru axel Fox 120mm fork shimmed down to 100mm that you can afford. A wheel set that has: a 15mm front hub; a rear hub that can be converted to 12x142; and rims that have a 22mm or wider inner diameter. Then current year XT brakes with a 180mm front rotor and 160mm rear rotor.
    I just purchased this wheelset:
    Hub (Front): DT Swiss XR-RS29 Disc CL / RWS QR
    Hub (Rear): DT Swiss XR-RS29 Disc CL / 12 x 142mm / RWS
    Spokes DT Swiss Aero Comp
    Rims: DT Swiss XR-RS29 Disc 28H / Tubeless ready
    Tires: Schwalbe Rocket Ron EVO 29 x 2.25 / 127EPI Kevlar Bead Tubeless ready / Pace star compound
    Rotors: 180/F and 160/R mm SM-RT67 CL Rotor

    Let me know what you think and if I made a mistake or not, lol. Picked them up brand new from another member for a pretty good price.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by J Crew View Post
    I just purchased this wheelset:
    Hub (Front): DT Swiss XR-RS29 Disc CL / RWS QR
    Hub (Rear): DT Swiss XR-RS29 Disc CL / 12 x 142mm / RWS
    Spokes DT Swiss Aero Comp
    Rims: DT Swiss XR-RS29 Disc 28H / Tubeless ready
    Tires: Schwalbe Rocket Ron EVO 29 x 2.25 / 127EPI Kevlar Bead Tubeless ready / Pace star compound
    Rotors: 180/F and 160/R mm SM-RT67 CL Rotor

    Let me know what you think and if I made a mistake or not, lol. Picked them up brand new from another member for a pretty good price.
    Looks good but you will need a conversion kit for the rear hub as your bike has a 10 mmX135 mm qr not a 12 mm by 142mm . I think those hubs do have conversion kits you will need to make sure before you get them or the rear will be useless . Don't panic though I am pretty sure DT has those kits and they're normally pretty cheap. The ones for my hope hubs are 20 bucks.
    Giant XTC 2 29er
    KHS Flagstaff 29er FS
    Neon Bow Trials Bike
    Norco Fluid 9.2 29er FS
    Norco BIGFOOT FATTY

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by fahza29er View Post
    Looks good but you will need a conversion kit for the rear hub as your bike has a 10 mmX135 mm qr not a 12 mm by 142mm . I think those hubs do have conversion kits you will need to make sure before you get them or the rear will be useless . Don't panic though I am pretty sure DT has those kits and they're normally pretty cheap. The ones for my hope hubs are 20 bucks.
    I found this conversion kit: 142x12mm (X-12) STD 5mm QR REAR-01528S on wheelbuilder .com

    Does this look like the right one? Thanks.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by J Crew View Post
    I found this conversion kit: 142x12mm (X-12) STD 5mm QR REAR-01528S on wheelbuilder .com

    Does this look like the right one? Thanks.
    No you already have 12x142 u need to convert it back to a 10x 135 and I didn't see one listed on wheel builder site, you migh want to check DT site.
    Giant XTC 2 29er
    KHS Flagstaff 29er FS
    Neon Bow Trials Bike
    Norco Fluid 9.2 29er FS
    Norco BIGFOOT FATTY

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by J Crew View Post
    Want to start by saying this is a great forum and there's a huge wealth of knowledge available on here. I'm very new to mountain biking and I recently picked up an '09-'10 (I believe) Marin Alpine Trail. I want to upgrade the cassette, crank, front and rear derailer, and shifters to Shimano XT components. I'm also going to upgrade the wheelset... but I'm just going to be patient and snag a set that someone is letting go for cheap.

    I've got everything priced up on chainreactioncycles. com and there are multiple choices on some of these components and I'm not sure which ones are correct for my mtb. I'm hoping maybe some of you can help point me in the right direction.

    Shifters: chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20701
    Cassette - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20677 - getting the 11-34 setup
    Crank - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20679 - is this the correct one? Do they make an all black?... I can't seem to find a triple in all black.
    Rear Derailer - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20699 - they make a shadow, a long cage, medium cage... not sure which one is correct. I was thinking of picking up this model in the medium cage. Thoughts?
    Front Derailer - chainreactioncycles .com/Models.aspx?ModelID=20684 - this is the big one with most questions. I don't know what milimeter ring to get, not sure if I get a direct, top, or bottom mount either? Any help is much needed.

    This is what I'm looking at so far. I'm not sure if I need to go ahead and pickup a chain too or if the one currently on my bike will work. Also any other accessories that I'm leaving out? If there's some more info that you need from me before you can point me in the right direction, then please fire away and I'll answer it to the best of my abilities. Thanks in advanced for any and all suggestions/help.

    ps - I put a space at the .com on the links because it wouldn't let me post web addresses. Just copy and past in the address bar and delete that space for the link to work.
    I highly recommend getting the shadow plus XT derailleur. It has a clutch that puts tension on the chain and greatly reduces chain slap. Your bike will be much quieter. However I believe XT shadow plus is only in 10 speed.

    Also blueskycycling has really good deals on XT drivetrains right now.

  14. #14
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    Looks like the FD is a Low Mount bottom pull. But like someone has mentioned earlier, especially in the upper lines they are usually dual pull.

  15. #15
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    As you are a new rider, the current components on that bike are decent except for the fork.

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