1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    bike assembly, matching components, compatibility etc. noob questions

    long story short, haven't ridden in years- went out and bought a giant trance 29er 2 a few months ago with plans for hitting trails, fun, exercise, and getting family out and about. I have kept up with riding (usually by myself) 4 or 5 times a week about 2 hours a trip, roughly 15 miles. Ive only had the bike "offroad" a handful of times. The majority of my riding is just on paved bike paths and little bit of gravel sometimes. I am wanting throw together an urban commuter type bike for general riding around town and whatnot. In my mind I am thinking a Chinese carbon frame, lightweight susp fork- possibly rigid, probably light-bicycle carbon wheels, smooth rolling tires, 1x9 (8 or 10 speed, whatever works) with a twist shift, only run a rear disc. I'm sure I can order whichever frame and fumble through the entire build but I wanted to have some sort of a plan. From what I gather the BB30 needs to be press fitted- so I would like to go with the bb68 (?) assuming I can find a nice 1x set up without to much trouble that fits. The fork/headset i'm pretty lost on 1-1/8, 1-1/4, tapered, 1-1/2x1-1/4? whats the most common/available? derailers and cassettes - do hubs all have the same spline (for mounting the cassette to) what fits to what? 135/142/ thruaxle? I apologize for the lack of paragraphs for whatever reason enter does nothing for me on this forum. I'll keep combing through threads for info - hoping for a little help though thanks!

  2. #2
    Big Gulps, Alright!
    Reputation: Berkley's Avatar
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    Why so much carbon for a commuter bike?

  3. #3
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    bike assembly, matching components, compatibility etc. noob questions

    You have much to learn. Start small and move slowly.

    I would suggest staying away from too much carbon for this build. A decent steel frame would be nice but alu would be easier to find at a lower price.

    Start with the frame first. Most of your questions will be answered by that.

    Relatively modern "standard" would be something with a 1 1/8 headset, 68 or 72mm English threaded bb (yes, press fit bb's are gaining popularity, but I dislike them on a city bike and plenty of frames are available without them if you avoid carbon), and 135mm spacing for a disc compatible mtb, or 130 for a road bike. 132.5 is around and can accommodate either a 135mm mtb hub or a 130mm road hub. Don't worry about 142mm for a commute bike.

    Axle size for a commute bike ought to be 9mm front and 10mm rear and can come as bolt-on or 5mm qr skewer. Bigger than that is overkill for a pavement errand bike.

    Too much carbon screams "steal me" because any moron meth head can identify it from a mile away. If you must have it, get a carbon fork at most for the ride quality of it. There really is no need for suspension on such a bike unless you intend to goof off on it more than using it for transportation.

    Once you choose a frame and fork, axle specifications, headset specifications, bottom bracket specifications, and seatpost specifications will be settled and you can order most of the rest of your parts.

    Drivetrain will still have a lot of options. If you want good twist shifters, you will need to go with sram derailleurs. You can mix other drivetrain bits if necessary (crankset, cassette, chain) but for the front derailleur (if you choose one), you will need a bunch of frame specs (clamp type/diameter, cable pull direction, top or bottom swing). If you want a 1x system, you will be cobbling something together to some extent. I'd go 1x10 since you are starting from scratch.

    I would use a triple crankset to base it off of if you want taller/faster road gearing. If you go mtb lower gearing, you can find specific ss cranksets that come with unramped rings, or use a mtn triple. Either way, you will probably want some kind of chain retention system on your crankset since the rear cluster will give you less than optimal chain lines in certain gears (increasing the likelihood of chain drop). You can go bashwich if you started with a triple crankset. You could get a wolf tooth chainring. You could look at other chain guides and retention devices. Some require special mounting points that your city bike probably won't have. Some will work for you. You have options.

    I would not convert a double crankset to a single ring setup. Chainline would downright suck in more gear combos. Get a double if you actually want a double.

  4. #4
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    i really dont have a good answer for that lol
    it may end up with very little tbh, usually hop on bike after working all day and catch the last few hours of the sun....I just want it to be fun to ride and fast

  5. #5
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    exact info I was looking for.
    good point with the carbon being a beacon for getting stolen. I'll keep searching through threads for 1x set ups and copy something already done
    and yes i do have a ton to learn, so much i think i over complicated it- really appreciate the response nitehawk

  6. #6
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    if you want to build an inexpensive, bomb-proof commuter, start with a Pake C'mute if you want canti/ v-brakes or an On-One Pompetine if you want disc brakes. the only reason you would want disc brakes on a commuter is if you plan to ride in a lot of rain and snow. i just built a C'mute with a cheap take-off carbon hybrid fork, drop bars, bar-end shifters with a 2x9 drivetrain, canti's, fenders, a rear rack, fat slick tires, etc. it's a very versatile frame. similar to a Surly Crosscheck but with a tall head tube.

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