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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    Newb Bike build... help please....

    I want to build a bike and I have decided on picking up an xl 2009 stumpjumper pro carbon frame.... it comes with s120 forks and front derailleur. I am 6'2" 240lbs.... is this the right size frame for me? Whats wheels, gears, etc would fit this bike? I am clueless but want to build a bike because it will be more cost effective for me and I can learn the in and outs of the bike.... thanks

  2. #2
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    you might want to recheck the "cost effective" part, building a bike from scratch can be more than a fully assembled one, one the other hand, building a bike from scratch teaches you all the stuff you'll need to know, and can carry over say you break something out on the trail. it also lets you have the parts that you want to have on your bike. if i had the money i would do the same.

    you'll need to know the frame specs. for bottom bracket and from there you can start searching what drivetrain you'll want. depending on what kind of riding you do, there's many choices that you can pick from. with a great frame like the one you have, try to avoid putting low end parts on it. it may cost more but it will be worth it. the best way to learn about what parts work with what is to Google it, and visit your LBS and ask them questions. most of them will be happy to help you and explain how drivetrains and derailleurs work. once you found a part that your interested, you can give the company a call and ask them personally. some companys will be able to tell you if there parts will work for your bike, they should have that information availble because the part you may be buying could be factory installed on some other bikes. DO NOT order parts without checking and then checking again to make sure it will fit. its frustrating getting a new part in mail after waiting for ever and then only learning that it wont work on your bike.

    and to learn how to install and adjust and tune your bike that you'll be building. YouTube has you covered. they have videos on everything. thats how i learned to adjust my deraillurs and change my Cog rings out when i bent the big ring.


    im probably leaving out some information to, so i'll let someone who has built a bike from scratch fill in the missing spots. i havent built my bike from ground up. only replaced the fork, Cogs and front and rear derailleurs

  3. #3
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    I built my first ever bike over the past few weeks. I spent many weeks reviewing these forums, especially, as well as searching online. People here can tell you that these wheels will fit your frame, or that stem, but it's you that's gonna ride it, and pay for it.

    I suggest putting a parts list together in a spreadsheet of some sort. I was also concerned about weight, so the projected weight was also something I considered. Then the research came. I didn't know how may seatpost or stem sizes there were, but after asking questions in the noob section and putting that list together, I was confident that I could build my bike with the correct fitting parts at the price I wanted to pay, and it's pretty satisfying to tell my friends that I built it from scratch, never mind the cheesy grin on my face when I'm on the trails.

    Find out everything you can about the frame, and learn from others' mistakes in here. It's gonna take hours of research- there's no easy part, but I can assure you the rewards far outweigh the time spent.

    Guess what I'm saying is that research is the most valuable thing you can do
    Current Stable: 2011 Niner EMD, 2011 Vassago Jabba

  4. #4
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    Having built my own bikes from scratch, here is my advice.

    1. Frame sizing - go test ride some bikes at a friendly LBS to see what sizing fits you best. Ride for 15 mins or so and you'll REALLY know if the sizing is right for you.

    2. Do some research on the frame you're buying. It should tell you what the bike came with originally. Nice place to start for you is here: Specialized Bicycle Components

    3. Now that you know what the bike came with, decide what you want to put on the bike (i.e. what will work, and what doesn't, what kind of parts). Example - I built my 07 SJ with the plan to go straight to 3x10 SRAM drivetrain instead of sticking to 3x9 as it would have come originally.

    4. Start reading install manuals, tech articles, watch how-to videos.

    6. Do your parts research for the parts you decided on - how much each really costs, and how cheap you can buy them for (researching completed listings on ebay is very helpful)

    7. Order all the parts - search locally, online, on ebay etc. Black Friday deals are everywhere right now so it is a great time to pick up bargains.

    8. Wait for parts to arrive.

    9. Put everything together using the knowledge you picked up from the manuals, videos etc.

    10. Take the bike for shakedown ride - make adjustments.

    TADA!!! You have built your own bike! Now go hit the trails!!

    BTW, I usually come in way below market value by putting my bikes together.

    -S
    Last edited by shibiwan; 11-21-2012 at 10:32 PM.

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys I am learning more about the part as I type this.... what is a good online site to buy parts from?

  6. #6
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    A couple of comments. You can't make good decisions without experience. Experience requires learning from mistakes. I suggest you buy a used bike from Craigslist or similar place in order to have a starting place.

    For buying parts, here are my personal favorites:
    Jenson USA - Online mountain & road bike parts, clothing and accessories shop
    Universal Cycles - The Largest Selection of Road and Mountain Bike Parts
    Feature Items - Harris Cyclery bicycle shop - West Newton, massachusetts
    Bikes, Cycling Clothing, Bike Parts & Cycling Gear: Bike Discounts & Deals from Nashbar

    No kidding, you will have to own a bike and ride it before any of the online comments make any sense to you.

  7. #7
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    You may also want to check out Mountain Bike Parts, Gear, and Accessories | CycleSport

    They are clearancing everything because they are shutting down to focus on their primary business (Motocross stuff). Picked up several great deals there but I think their stock is getting thin.

    -S

  8. #8
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    I dont want to get a bike off of craigslist.... I already have a great frame

  9. #9
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    I would definitely try to learn a bit more before jumping into building a bike.

  10. #10
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    I am a maintenance mechanic and you tube is golden.... ill post a few pics on here after I buildmy ride

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadScientist View Post
    I want to build a bike and I have decided on picking up an xl 2009 stumpjumper pro carbon frame.... it comes with s120 forks and front derailleur. I am 6'2" 240lbs.... is this the right size frame for me? Whats wheels, gears, etc would fit this bike? I am clueless but want to build a bike because it will be more cost effective for me and I can learn the in and outs of the bike.... thanks
    ;'
    I will echo others sentiments. Building from scratch and cost effective are two things that almost never go together. not to say that it can't be done, but it's awfully tough if you have no experience. There are so many little parts that really make the price start adding up that buying from bikes direct for your first bike is probably the best bet and then stripping all the parts off it and then putting them onto this frame you have. That way you will learn a lot about how to build and work on your own bike and when you are done you can sell the bikes direct frame for a couple hundred bucks and recoup. to build it on the cheap otherwise means scouring ebay and craigslist for parts and while you may get some deals on parts you won't necessarily know if they are any good or not.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by cpfitness View Post
    ;'
    I will echo others sentiments. Building from scratch and cost effective are two things that almost never go together. not to say that it can't be done, but it's awfully tough if you have no experience. There are so many little parts that really make the price start adding up that buying from bikes direct for your first bike is probably the best bet and then stripping all the parts off it and then putting them onto this frame you have. That way you will learn a lot about how to build and work on your own bike and when you are done you can sell the bikes direct frame for a couple hundred bucks and recoup. to build it on the cheap otherwise means scouring ebay and craigslist for parts and while you may get some deals on parts you won't necessarily know if they are any good or not.
    Understandable..... I guess the madscientist needs to get to work.... lol

  13. #13
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    dont let the naysayers dissuade you. if you want to start riding right away, buying a used bike is a better option. if your willing to take time to get it built and buy it part by part, then go for it. There are also a lot of speciality tools specific to bikes, particularly in the area of crank removal and installation and headset removal and installation so you not only need to buy parts, you need to buy the proper tools or have a bike shop do certain aspects of your install

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadScientist View Post
    I want to build a bike and I have decided on picking up an xl 2009 stumpjumper pro carbon frame.... it comes with s120 forks and front derailleur. I am 6'2" 240lbs.... is this the right size frame for me? Whats wheels, gears, etc would fit this bike? I am clueless but want to build a bike because it will be more cost effective for me and I can learn the in and outs of the bike.... thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by MadScientist View Post
    I dont want to get a bike off of craigslist.... I already have a great frame
    You are not going to be riding that frame any time soon. Do you already have a mountain bike to ride? I suggested a used bike because you do not have a clue how much this will cost in dollars, hours, and calendar time. Say six months, and $1200. That's an educated guess.

  15. #15
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    The building of the bike can be realatively fast. It is getting the parts and tools that can take a long time. The most recent bike i built took about a week and a half of building but probably 4 months of part collecting in the process. I knew what parts I wanted plus had a bunch on hand (I was building my girlfriends bike and was able to upgrade lots of my parts and put my old ones on her bike. Win/win hehe). It is nice to have another bike around to look at for examples and ride while you are building your new bike.

  16. #16
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    As many have said, experience will ensure a more enjoyable project. This is not to say you will not be able to complete your project or meant to dissuade you.

    As far as being cost effective, if you are privy to employee discounts, I can see where you can save money over retail.

    Just to set the reality bar, I saw a 2009 XL Stumpy Pro Carbon, excellent condition, with a better fork than yours, complete, for $1850, no tax.

    Good luck with your build and post pics of your project.

    Cheers.
    The suspension of your bike sucks if it's different than mine. Really. It sucks. Big time.

  17. #17
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    Beside the skills needed to build the bike up you'd also need proper tools, and they are not cheap, when you starting out. You'd need a bike stand of some sort and go from there. If you decide to go that route then all the power to you, there are some learning curve but once you got them down it's like riding a bike

  18. #18
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    I will be building the bike for sure.... wish me luck and I will post pics most definitely.... thanks guys....

  19. #19
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    Im trying to find a good mechanic bike stand.... any thoughts guys?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavyRay View Post
    You are not going to be riding that frame any time soon. Do you already have a mountain bike to ride? I suggested a used bike because you do not have a clue how much this will cost in dollars, hours, and calendar time. Say six months, and $1200. That's an educated guess.
    Holy dag gone golly gosh dern it jasper....I didnt know it took six months to build a bicycle
    good luck mr madscientist... this must be impossible...er most of these folks is bike shop employees er something

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by njoypow View Post
    :

    Holy dag gone golly gosh dern it jasper....I didnt know it took six months to build a bicycle
    good luck mr madscientist... this must be impossible...er most of these folks is bike shop employees er something
    Typical MTBR forum participants watching a bike being built.




    -S

  22. #22
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    As for the bike stand, I use a five gallon bucket with a brick on top.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by njoypow View Post
    As for the bike stand, I use a five gallon bucket with a brick on top.
    Many DIY may work for general maintenance but not for a build or you gotta have experience or Kung fu master mechanical skill


    Sent from my iPhone 4s using Tapatalk

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885 View Post
    Many DIY may work for general maintenance but not for a build or you gotta have experience or Kung fu master mechanical skill


    Sent from my iPhone 4s using Tapatalk
    Geez...Seems ur experience lies manly in your fingertips mr 6000 posts... the dudes trying to build a bike and everyone is shredin him. I build race jeeps bra....these are bikes

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by njoypow View Post
    Geez...Seems ur experience lies manly in your fingertips mr 6000 posts... the dudes trying to build a bike and everyone is shredin him. I build race jeeps bra....these are bikes
    Hey, be nice.

    -S

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