Parts upgrade question
So, riding up on Green Mtn about two weeks ago I hit a rock and blew up my bike. Total rear triangle weld failure. Funny thing is I was coming up on four dudes and might have been traveling 3 MPH when I heard and felt a snap. My bike is a G.F. Caliber from 2007 http://fisherbikes.com/bike/archivemodel/269 I love the bike. A small walk home from the radio tower to my house ( I live near G.M. H.S.) and a drive to Wheat ridge cycles later I have a warrenty HI Fi frame coming. I have a back up bike (G.F Rig) so the whole thing has been no big deal really. Fisher did the right thing in my mind and WRC was great to work with.
Here is my question. Should I just transfer over my existing parts with a bunch of miles on them or upgrade? Currently I have a Manitou Radium RL rear shock, Reba SL 29 set up at 100MM, SRAM X.7 shifters and derailures, and Avid brakes. I have upgraded the wheelset last year to the Crossmax 29's tubelss.
Would a new fox fork and XT group be worth the $1,500? I am 40, 200 lbs, and ride a bunch. but I don't really race ever. I'll get into a couple of 6-8 hour rides this year and maybe a team 24 hour event or two?
if your partner tears your legs off, you aren't his riding partner anymore. he rides alone. with an extra set of legs
I'd suggest the following upgrades.
Brakes - avid elixir
Shifters - sram x.9 or x.0.
Your bike will get a hair lighter but you will be happier with better braking and shifting
The brakes are decent as is. If I were you, I'd go with X9 shifters and rear derailleur. Leave the front alone. You should be able to find the shifter/derailleur combo for around $150.
There's something I don't quite understand about the fork. I thought Fisher had an agreement with Fox to produce some forks with greater rake. Did Fisher have that deal with RockShox too? You can't buy a new fork with the same rake.
Your warranty frame typically won't have a shock. Double check to see if your shock fits first before upgrading other parts.
But if you can do other parts:
32mm Fox Float RLC that's a couple of years old but clean ~$500 - $600. Pinkbike
Elixir CRs ~ $150 each, I found some carbons on www.outsideoutfitters.com a while ago. But now, check Ride-on and Jenson.
X0 shifts and rear mech: check Pinkbike, CL, & ebay.
Also check into rings, chain and rear cassette (replace these three things together, XT level is good bang for the $$. You can save costs here a bit by dropping your largest ring and going double and a guard and a 11-34 for the stack. Also think some new housing and shifty cables too.
I'd give your bike a very careful once over before dropping any coin on it. Start with the things that are most worn out or will give you the most functional performance enhancement. Check the bottom bracket. If it's worn or close to it, a new crank with an external bb will potentially gain you some bb stiffness and shave weight at the same time. That move would probably get you some nicer shifting chainrings, too. Like Paully says, also check your chain and cassette. If you're on a budget, the SRAM 980 cassette shifts great, is within grams of an XT or 990 cassette and costs a lot less. A new drivetrain along with cables and housing will make a world of difference. See how sloppy the rear der pivots are. That X7 rear der could be a good candidate for replacement if it's sloppy. All of those things will greatly improve shifting performance even with the existing shifters.
Avid makes/made some really good brakes and some not so good brakes. Hard to say there. What model of Avid are they? If the stopping power is good for you and you like the way they feel, might as well leave them alone. Whether you get new brakes or leave the existing, if you haven't already, upgrade to a 180/185 rotor in the front. At 200lbs, you'll notice a huge difference in braking.