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  1. #1
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    Good job! One upgrade to rule them all

    If you could only upgrade one major component on your bike, what would it be and why? I'm craving a burlier steed on a budget (eg brakes, fork, wheelset, drivetrain, etc).

    I'm thinkin wheelset, but please give me enough $0.02 to spend it.

  2. #2
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    One upgrade to rule them all

    Quote Originally Posted by bluntrager View Post
    If you could only upgrade one major component on your bike, what would it be and why? I'm craving a burlier steed on a budget (eg brakes, fork, wheelset, drivetrain, etc).

    I'm thinkin wheelset, but please give me enough $0.02 to spend it.
    Depends entirely on the current components on the bike.
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  3. #3
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    One upgrade to rule them all

    Dropper seat post... You can climb in a proper position yet you can drop the seat for DH and twisty tight flowy stuff. I think my dropper gets used more than deraileurs on a ride.
    I hope you have a big trunk... cause I'm gonna put my bike in it!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by abeckstead View Post
    Dropper seat post... You can climb in a proper position yet you can drop the seat for DH and twisty tight flowy stuff. I think my dropper gets used more than deraileurs on a ride.
    ^^ This!

    [/thread]

    I put one on my bike a couple months ago and I can't imagine ever riding without one!

  5. #5
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    My bike is a 2013 Trek Mamba, so all of the components are on the lower end of things. Dropper post would be awesome, but most of my riding is all up then all down, and I don't mind hoppin off at the top to drop. Perhaps I'll rethink that next time I ride though. I actually went to my lbs a few weeks ago to look into dropper posts but ended up stocking up on gear instead (camelbak, shoes, knee pads). ...i imagine a good wheelset would be too much $$$ too?

  6. #6
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    Upgradeitis! This will fall on deaf ears, just like if someone told me the same thing, but wait until you break something and replace it with a lighter part.

    Do you have a good workstand and toolkit? Less fun to buy, but then you can have a cocktail and tear down/rebuild your bike. That's fun!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuglio View Post
    You guys suck im all bummed now

  7. #7
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    Re: One upgrade to rule them all

    Dropper, then wheels, but don't skimp on em, a marginal wheel upgrade is a waste of money.

    Sent from (redacted by nsa)

  8. #8
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    One upgrade to rule them all

    Quote Originally Posted by BigSteve in CO View Post
    Upgradeitis! This will fall on deaf ears, just like if someone told me the same thing, but wait until you break something and replace it with a lighter part.

    Do you have a good workstand and toolkit? Less fun to buy, but then you can have a cocktail and tear down/rebuild your bike. That's fun!
    Agreed.
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  9. #9
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    As others have said the current components matter, personally id say the biggest upgrade would be suspension, after the frame design, it deals with virtually everything, every force will go to the suspension before it goes into the body, suspension can make a ride completely rotten or the best ever. A poor set up top range bike will be shocking to ride.

    Good bang for buck, albeit expensive one.

    I think non performance parts thought the most important thing is anything that sets the bike up for you, so getting the right size bars, stem, cranks, set (dropper if necessary)
    Last edited by Driftking; 08-10-2013 at 08:17 AM.

  10. #10
    local trails rider
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    What would I upgrade?
    I'd get brakes that can stand riding at temps below -15Celsius.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  11. #11
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    The first, best, and cheap upgrade I have done to all my bikes is tires.
    2015 FAT BOY
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  12. #12
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    Skills.

  13. #13
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    Wheels!!!!!!

  14. #14
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    My favorite upgrade that I've made was on the engine. Dropped 30 or so pounds, strengthened the core, arms, legs, and updated the technical abilities. That was the best upgrade I've ever made. Next best was the wheelset with a lighter cassette and tires. IN addition to being stronger, the bike was significantly lighter making me a little faster with better endurance.

  15. #15
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    Your bike is being discontinued for next year so I would sell it an negotiate for a deal on a Superfly AL.
    If you want to keep it I would get a Manitou Tower Pro fork, a light front wheel with changes of endcaps like aa ArchEx/Hope Pro2 from Wiggle and a SLX front brake from Bluesky.

  16. #16
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    Wheelset!

    Rotational weightsavings have a huge impact on your ride, as does stiffness.

  17. #17
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    I would think that it would depend entirely on what aspect of your bike you were least satisfied with.

    For me, brakes were the first to get upgraded, then drivetrain, then wheels with a dropper post in the mix.

    But the "upgrade when it breaks" is a great philosophy.

    CONVERSELY, bear in mind you're going to get a better price when you buy the whole group than when you go piece-by-piece.
    ​mountain biking is fun.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigSteve in CO View Post
    Upgradeitis! This will fall on deaf ears, just like if someone told me the same thing, but wait until you break something and replace it with a lighter part.

    Do you have a good workstand and toolkit? Less fun to buy, but then you can have a cocktail and tear down/rebuild your bike. That's fun!
    A workstand would be good. I have a bunch of tools. Need to get a torque wrench though...thanks!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    What would I upgrade?
    I'd get brakes that can stand riding at temps below -15Celsius.
    Sounds like a good jacket might come in handy too then! Brrrrrr

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by NTIMD8 View Post
    The first, best, and cheap upgrade I have done to all my bikes is tires.
    Can't wait to get new tires, but won't be doing that til I run all the tread down. Better get riding.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirty $anchez View Post
    Skills.
    If only those were for sale...

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spec7 View Post
    My favorite upgrade that I've made was on the engine. Dropped 30 or so pounds, strengthened the core, arms, legs, and updated the technical abilities. That was the best upgrade I've ever made. Next best was the wheelset with a lighter cassette and tires. IN addition to being stronger, the bike was significantly lighter making me a little faster with better endurance.
    Working on the engine now! I've dropped ~15 pounds, need to add some strength training to that though. Wheelset is looking like a strong contender.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Your bike is being discontinued for next year so I would sell it an negotiate for a deal on a Superfly AL.
    If you want to keep it I would get a Manitou Tower Pro fork, a light front wheel with changes of endcaps like aa ArchEx/Hope Pro2 from Wiggle and a SLX front brake from Bluesky.
    I didn't know it's being discontinued...does that pretty much mean it's going to be a huge pain in the @ss to get parts for it in the future? Does the Manitou Tower Pro fork work with G2 geometry? I heard there aren't many options for fork upgrades for my bike. Front end upgrades sound like a much more feasible idea, rather than trying to take care of both ends at once.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluntrager View Post
    I didn't know it's being discontinued...does that pretty much mean it's going to be a huge pain in the @ss to get parts for it in the future? Does the Manitou Tower Pro fork work with G2 geometry? I heard there aren't many options for fork upgrades for my bike. Front end upgrades sound like a much more feasible idea, rather than trying to take care of both ends at once.
    The Manitou is 48mm offset compared to 51 for G2, so you may not notice a slightly slower steering response.
    You won't have any difficultly getting parts-they are universal except for the fork. But your bikes resale value will be affected. With no current model with the name buyers won't know it.
    Removing weight from the front end is the most noticeable upgrade.
    For the rear shifting upgrade a full length housing and slick stainless cable from REI will make a big difference for cheap. Drill out the stops.
    Last edited by eb1888; 08-11-2013 at 05:19 AM.

  25. #25
    local trails rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluntrager View Post
    Sounds like a good jacket might come in handy too then! Brrrrrr
    I have a good jacket, and gloves and socks - which means that -15C isn't actually cold for me. It seems to be a bit on the chilly side for my current brakes, though.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  26. #26
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    I'd say a dropper, but before that would be a good set of wheels and a quality fork. It would be odd to see someone with stock wheels and fork on a $300 bike with a $400 dropper.

  27. #27
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    Don't let these guys talk you into putting a $500 fork or wheelset on a $1000 bike. If you need that big of an upgrade, then you might just need to save a little longer and get a whole new bike. Dropping serious coin on parts for an entry level bike=buyer's remorse.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuglio View Post
    You guys suck im all bummed now

  28. #28
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    Good job!

    Quote Originally Posted by BigSteve in CO View Post
    Don't let these guys talk you into putting a $500 fork or wheelset on a $1000 bike. If you need that big of an upgrade, then you might just need to save a little longer and get a whole new bike. Dropping serious coin on parts for an entry level bike=buyer's remorse.
    Very understandable, though my eventual hope would be to get some the top of line parts that will last long enough to transfer to a new bike when I do finally get one. But I very well may just save up for a new, radically different bike so I can expand my riding horizons before upgrading the one I'm on now. Time will tell.

  29. #29
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    Tires. Ditch the original tires, they are probably lower spec casings and search around and see what the locals use. Once you find what they are using upgrade your tires and at the same time if it is important to you, convert to tubeless. You will probably drop rotating mass, gain traction and compliance. This will make your bike feel better than almost any other upgrade next to saddle and grips (which if your current ones are fine then it isn't even worth changing those).

    Look at the higher end tires by maxxis, specialized, bontrager and Schwable. The prices might be high but the performance gains from a good tire is insane. As well experiment with your tire pressures. If you run them hard (35-40psi for 26 and 30-35psi for 29er) each ride let out 2psi and see if your control and climbing gets better. If you start hitting the rim or it feels like you are rolling the tire too much then go back up 2psi. Just experiment with pressures to see what works best. Then write that down and always ensure your tires are at the pressure before rolling out for a ride. Also note that back and front tires might perform best with differing pressures, again being conscious of what your tires are doing and how they are performing will allow you to adjust and optimize their performance.
    Try this: HTFU

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockcrusher View Post
    Tires. Ditch the original tires, they are probably lower spec casings and search around and see what the locals use. Once you find what they are using upgrade your tires and at the same time if it is important to you, convert to tubeless. You will probably drop rotating mass, gain traction and compliance. This will make your bike feel better than almost any other upgrade next to saddle and grips (which if your current ones are fine then it isn't even worth changing those).

    Look at the higher end tires by maxxis, specialized, bontrager and Schwable. The prices might be high but the performance gains from a good tire is insane. As well experiment with your tire pressures. If you run them hard (35-40psi for 26 and 30-35psi for 29er) each ride let out 2psi and see if your control and climbing gets better. If you start hitting the rim or it feels like you are rolling the tire too much then go back up 2psi. Just experiment with pressures to see what works best. Then write that down and always ensure your tires are at the pressure before rolling out for a ride. Also note that back and front tires might perform best with differing pressures, again being conscious of what your tires are doing and how they are performing will allow you to adjust and optimize their performance.
    I like the way you think, and so will my wallet. Time to invest in a floor pump and go browse the tire forums.

  31. #31
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    argh... i'm wanting a dropper post and a workstand!

  32. #32
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    Dropper post.

    Unless the bike has V-brakes, then I would get discs first.

  33. #33
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    Major? Nope, this time I bought like I meant it. When you start talking about major systems, you start talking about a budget where you may as well throw in the rest of a bike.

    For minor stuff, well... nailing fit is huge. I'm still working on that with my new baby. I swapped the stem the other day, and I'm not totally sold on the saddle or riser bars.

    After that, I like to have pedals I like (the cheapest Time ATACs, thank you ) and tires I like.

    My last bike was an upgradeitis poster child. I put it in this thread, actually a couple times.
    http://forums.mtbr.com/beginners-corner/post-your-$1000-2000-hardtail-685402.html
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by abeckstead View Post
    Dropper seat post... You can climb in a proper position yet you can drop the seat for DH and twisty tight flowy stuff. I think my dropper gets used more than deraileurs on a ride.
    Plus 1

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Major? Nope, this time I bought like I meant it. When you start talking about major systems, you start talking about a budget where you may as well throw in the rest of a bike.

    For minor stuff, well... nailing fit is huge. I'm still working on that with my new baby. I swapped the stem the other day, and I'm not totally sold on the saddle or riser bars.

    After that, I like to have pedals I like (the cheapest Time ATACs, thank you ) and tires I like.

    My last bike was an upgradeitis poster child. I put it in this thread, actually a couple times.
    http://forums.mtbr.com/beginners-cor...il-685402.html
    That thread is dangerous, likely to give me a serious case of upraditis that will be incurable. The horror!

  36. #36
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    I would love me a dropper seat but that price tag is hard to stomach.. especially since im on a 1000$ hardtail
    Rockhopper 29er

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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluntrager View Post
    That thread is dangerous, likely to give me a serious case of upraditis that will be incurable. The horror!
    Part of my motivation at the time was I thought people should have some idea of what other riders are fitting into that price bracket. There are a couple of other price bracket threads floating around too.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  38. #38
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    Dropper posts are buffers for bad technique.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by FNFAL View Post
    Dropper posts are buffers for bad technique.
    Doesn't matter to me... I enjoy my rides more with the dropper installed

  40. #40
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    Re: One upgrade to rule them all

    Suspension. Also brakes if you like to ride fast/bomb downhill.

    Sent from my HTC EVO LTE

  41. #41
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    not trolling or anything, i'm a noob and this is the first i heard of this. please elaborate. i've always thought it's ideal to have high position saddle for pedaling and low for weight distribution mobility without the saddle getting in the way. i'm missing the (bad) technique part of it.
    Quote Originally Posted by FNFAL View Post
    Dropper posts are buffers for bad technique.

  42. #42
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    A dropper lets you get behind the saddle easier, but getting low in the saddle and getting behind the saddle are two different things. It's better to learn how to shift your weight properly before employing a dropper.

    In a properly set-up bike, you should be able to get behind the saddle with ease.

    That being said, the "one upgrade to rule them all" is 1) your legs, and 2) a proper bike fit.
    Quote Originally Posted by db_8 View Post
    not trolling or anything, i'm a noob and this is the first i heard of this. please elaborate. i've always thought it's ideal to have high position saddle for pedaling and low for weight distribution mobility without the saddle getting in the way. i'm missing the (bad) technique part of it.

  43. #43
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    Ditto upgrading to a Superfly AL. The "Platinum" series frame is stiffer and lighter than the "Gold" series you have now. Then replace stuff as it breaks. I have a '12 AL Elite and love it.

    Listing Detail - Bicycle Blue Book
    It is listed used for only $1300. If you could actually find one it would be a hell of a deal. I don't know where Bicycle Blue Book gets their data....

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by FNFAL View Post
    Dropper posts are buffers for bad technique.
    Ah, that must be why pro DH racers have their seat as high as they can get it... I actually agree to an extent, but that's like saying suspension is a buffer for bad technique. I also think the ability to safely ride behind the seat has something to do with the amount of drop from your seat to your bars.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuglio View Post
    You guys suck im all bummed now

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigSteve in CO View Post
    ...but that's like saying suspension is a buffer for bad technique. I also think the ability to safely ride behind the seat has something to do with the amount of drop from your seat to your bars.
    Bicycles are more capable than the rider. This is especially true for this subforum. I do not believe in laying down cash for products that promise to increase your skill.

    The Pro DH racers I know don't have dropper posts on their XC bikes.

  46. #46
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    Which dropper post will be the best for mamba,2013?

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terror Blade View Post
    Which dropper post will be the best for mamba,2013?
    The new Thomson post is sweet.
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  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by moefosho View Post
    The new Thomson post is sweet.
    Thompson doesn't have 27.2mm dropper post!!!

  49. #49
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    27.2 limits your options for a dropper post, but the few options that you have are pretty darn good. The KS Lev comes in a 27.2. I currently use an X Fusion Hilo (30.9 though) and as bad as the reviews has been, its not a bad dropper for the price and it comes in a 27.2.

  50. #50
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    Re: One upgrade to rule them all

    [.....

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