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  1. #1
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    Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread

    I picked up a KHS XC-204 frame on Black Friday. This will be my first full suspension bike, and first build. I'm taking the budget route, grabbing used parts of eBay and the like. I figure I would try to document the build, for others trying to build a budget FS bike.

    I'm not a weight weenie, but I will be weighing the bike at various stages of the build. Unfortunately I don't have an accurate scale, so I will be using my Wii fit scale. So don't assume the weights are very accurate.

    Anyhow, this is how the frame came from Wheel World. It's a large size frame, came with the seatpost collar, headset, and derailleur hanger. Plus it comes with a low end Rockshox bar 2.1 shock. The Wii tells me the frame weighs 7.3 lbs.

    And yes, my workstand is the kitchen table.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread-frame.jpg  


  2. #2
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    If there were more post of this kind (KHS threads) then we might have enough for our own forum.

  3. #3
    ride more
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    sharp lookin frame

  4. #4
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    I got my Tora 318 Solo-Air, Ritchey Stem, and Shimano External Bottom Bracket installed. Current Wii weight is 12.7lbs.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread-forkbbstem.jpg  


  5. #5
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    Looking good! I wish I would have done the same thing in documenting the build as you have done. Just waiting on bottom bracket wrench i ordered and I can complete things. I'm curious to see what the total weight will be when I'm finished. Looks like our set ups are very similiar. My bike has a cousin. I got the frame in an XL. I've installed the shimano bottom bracket and solo air tora as well. I went with the OEM seat post (seems these are a good bit lighter than others), MJ Xlite stem, easton EA50 handle bars. I also bought a shimano Deore LX front derailleur. I considered the shimano SLX crankset as my splurge. Read a lot of good things about it and ultimately felt like a new frame deserved some new upgraded parts. The remaining parts are transfers from my Forge Sawback hardtail. Decent components: Deore shifters, Hayes MX-2 brakes (may elect to leave these off and upgrade to hydro), Tektro levers, deore rear derailleur, cables, WTB pure v seat, WTB speed disc wheels, Kenda krusher tires. The Forge served me well, but I wanted to venture towards FS. It will be re-done for my son later and was really too small for my frame. In the end, I feel like I will be very happy with the XC-204. My only concern would be the rear shock for my clyde weight (300lbs). I'll post pics once you've completed yours. I don't want to confuse others or hijack your thread. Looks like you've got a great start. Anxious to see and hear more.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyrus
    Looking good! I wish I would have done the same thing in documenting the build as you have done. Just waiting on bottom bracket wrench i ordered and I can complete things. I'm curious to see what the total weight will be when I'm finished. Looks like our set ups are very similiar. My bike has a cousin. I got the frame in an XL. I've installed the shimano bottom bracket and solo air tora as well. I went with the OEM seat post (seems these are a good bit lighter than others), MJ Xlite stem, easton EA50 handle bars. I also bought a shimano Deore LX front derailleur. I considered the shimano SLX crankset as my splurge. Read a lot of good things about it and ultimately felt like a new frame deserved some new upgraded parts. The remaining parts are transfers from my Forge Sawback hardtail. Decent components: Deore shifters, Hayes MX-2 brakes (may elect to leave these off and upgrade to hydro), Tektro levers, deore rear derailleur, cables, WTB pure v seat, WTB speed disc wheels, Kenda krusher tires. The Forge served me well, but I wanted to venture towards FS. It will be re-done for my son later and was really too small for my frame. In the end, I feel like I will be very happy with the XC-204. My only concern would be the rear shock for my clyde weight (300lbs). I'll post pics once you've completed yours. I don't want to confuse others or hijack your thread. Looks like you've got a great start. Anxious to see and hear more.
    Our bikes are definitely cousins. I think the SLX Crankset would be a great splurge. I wa wondering if I could afford them in my build. But I found a set of Shimano M542 cranks with Deore shifters and derailleurs for a screaming deal on eBay, so I will be using those. I'm used to Sram drivetrain, but figured I'd give the Shimano a try since the price was so good.

    My next step is to install the crankset, which means it won't fit so nicely on the kitchen table. I'll have to move out to the cold garage and my ghetto trunk-rack-mounted-to-the-wall workstand.

  7. #7
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    vmax, I have a 604. I think you'll like the bike. I am running a reba at 115mm now but have not ridden it since I had the fork extended. It does slaken the bike up a bit and only raises the BB a tad. FWIW, my bike is right around 30lb with LX cranks, X9/X7 DT and Mavic 719 with XT CL hubs.
    The frame is nice and stout with a geometry very similar to the Titus Moto. The rear triangle is pretty much identical in geo.

  8. #8
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    Added Ritchey Comp Handlebar, Shimano M542 Crankset, and Thomson Elite Seatpost. 16.0 lbs according to the Wii.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread-crankbarseatpost.jpg  


  9. #9
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    Looks like I may have messed up on my front derailleur purchase. I just installed my crankset and it appears the derailleur needs to be bottom clamp capable due to shock mount on the seat tube. Can anyone confirm this?

  10. #10
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    Yes, you need a bottom clamp, top pull front derailleur (at least that's what I used). What crankset did you end up getting?

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the quick response... I did end up with the SLX crankset. I just installed today after I got my bracket tool from pricepoint. Hmmm, I guess its time to shop some more. Any reccomendations?

  12. #12
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    My X7 was like $26 at performance. XT was about $40. Demends on your preference.

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    It seems that most here like Shimano front derailleurs. That LX would have been great if you had it in low-clamp. I'll be using a Deore, which should be pretty cheap. I'm using an x.7 on my hardtail, and it works fine, though I don't have anything to compare it with. (Though it does shift nicer than my 18 year old 200GS derailleur.)

  14. #14
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    Added Deore Shifters and Derailleurs, Elixir R SL Brakeset, WTB Pure V Seat. I'm now up to 19.5lbs. Almost done!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread-derailleursbrakesseatgrips.jpg  


  15. #15
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    She's Finished!

    Finished up my build. WTB Laserdisc XC rims on Shimano M775 XT hubs, XT rotors and XT cassette. WTB Weirwolf tires, 2.3 Race up front, 2.1 Comp in back. KMC X9sl Chain. Final weight of the build (without pedals) = 30.0 lbs! Pretty darn good buy my book. I could get sub 30lbs by getting lighter tires and ditching the slime if I wanted to, but I'm pretty satisfied with the build.

    Now I want to build another!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread-done.jpg  


  16. #16
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    Outstanding. Looks great! With it shining like that makes me feel bad that I installed dirty tires on mine

  17. #17
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    Lol! The front tire is new, but the rear on is used. I actually cleaned the rear tire with a toothbrush, since I was moving the bike in and out of the house to weigh it. Tire marks across the carped would not go over well with the wife!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vmax911
    Lol! The front tire is new, but the rear on is used. I actually cleaned the rear tire with a toothbrush, since I was moving the bike in and out of the house to weigh it. Tire marks across the carped would not go over well with the wife!
    happy wife happy life granted, I'm not married, but that's what I hear haha. anywho, have you had a chance to get out and ride it yet? Turns out the GT i-drive frame I picked up might be a nice paper weight due to a crack at one of the welds, I've been looking at the KHS 604 frame to replace it.

  19. #19
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    I haven't gotten to ride yet, except up and down the street. I'm hoping to sneak out this afternoon for a short ride.

    Not sure where you are looking for the frame, but it seems the only difference in the xc-x04 lineup is color and shock.

  20. #20
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    I did get a ride in this afternoon. I think the bike rides great! For some reason the bike feels faster (acceleration wise) than my hardtail. Proably just new bike excitement. I did notice a clunking noise on really rough terrain. Turns out my rear derailleur is hutting the rear pivot at time. It's probably just a b-screw adjustment, but I'll leave that for the drivetrain forum. But it did make me wonder if anyone knows the torque specs for the pivots or shock mounting hardware. It may be something I want to check every now and then. Here's a pic from today (better than in the garage).
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Budget KHS XC-204 Build Thread-khsmall.jpg  


  21. #21
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    I like it. Nice job.

  22. #22
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    Nice bike. You said it was a budget build. Whats the bottom line?

  23. #23
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    Last edited by melman; 02-20-2010 at 02:18 PM.

  24. #24
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    Last edited by melman; 02-20-2010 at 02:17 PM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by melman
    I wrote to mtbr to see if they could add a KHS forum. Hopefully the come through!
    Forrest,

    I have just recently joing mtbr. and think this is an absolutely wonderful site. Helps us all to communicate and share information. I was trying to connect with other KHS riders. Found a few riders working on KHS bikes and have involved myself with their forum. I have noticed that there is no KHS forum. Have read a few comments that other riders would like to have a KHS forum. This would make it easier for us to find each other to communicate. Could you please add a KHS forum. Sincerely, Melman
    Check in here too: Who would like to see a KHS Forum?

  26. #26
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    Last edited by melman; 02-20-2010 at 02:16 PM.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by melman
    Saw that they closed the poll. What happens next?
    Ask on the other thread, this one is about his build.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyrus
    Thanks for the quick response... I did end up with the SLX crankset. I just installed today after I got my bracket tool from pricepoint. Hmmm, I guess its time to shop some more. Any reccomendations?
    Hey Kyrus, how is your build coming along?

  29. #29
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    After reading this thread, I really want to build my own khs xc 204. I currently own a hardtail that's about 1 year old. I've been ridden for just 1 summer, the bike does have decent components. I was thinking getting this xc 204 frame and use all the components from my hardtail bike. Can I get any suggestions from you guys? Can I do it myself? Do I need any special tools to complete the task? I do my own maintenance at home but nothing major.
    Thanks for all your help

  30. #30
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    I just finished building up a 2005 Hardrock for my wife (after stripping/painting the frame pink of course) using components from my old Fisher hardtail. It wasn't hard at all. You'll need to make sure the bottom bracket will work but that's about the only concern on interchangeability IMO.

  31. #31
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    You'll need a bottom bracket tool, and should use a torque wrench. If you're just swapping parts, you don't need a cassette tool, though they are nice to have.

    Most part should swap over just fine. Most bottom brackets are the same thread, you may need spacers if they are a different width. You'll need to make sure the steerer tube on you fork is long enough for the new frame. Seatpost size may be different as well.

  32. #32
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    Did you ever find torque specs for the pivots? I'm going to take the shock off mine to check all the pivots and don't want to over-torque it when I put it back on. I found the Sette Flight/Ace specs in another thread which are similar geometry and it's 12 N-m for them.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperJETT
    Did you ever find torque specs for the pivots? I'm going to take the shock off mine to check all the pivots and don't want to over-torque it when I put it back on. I found the Sette Flight/Ace specs in another thread which are similar geometry and it's 12 N-m for them.
    No, I didn't. Well, actually, I never looked. But it's been on my to-do list

  34. #34
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    I went ahead and did 12 N-m/9 ft-lbs which sounds about right for that size/material bolt.

    I also put my bashguard on and shortened the chain last night for 2x9 and noticed the rear der. hits the chainstay in all but the 3 biggest gears. It's a Shimano LX and apparently that's a common deal for them. I tried adjusting the B tension but it didn't help. Looks like it's upgrade time...

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vmax911
    Hey Kyrus, how is your build coming along?
    Hey Vmax... The bike is great. It performed very well at one of the local trails here. Very happy with the switch. As a Cylde, there is no indication this bike can't handle anything I'm capable of dishing at it. As soon as I figure out how to post pics to a forum I'll get something up.

  36. #36
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    To add a pic, just hit the "Post Reply" button (not "Quick Reply"). In the "Additional Options" box you can hit "upload images."

    But, yeah, I'm liking my KHS too

  37. #37
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    Thanks... I was going the insert image button route and didn't have a URL where the images are posted.

  38. #38
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    What travel fork are you running?
    -Don "LordDRIFT" Draper.

  39. #39
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    I was running a Recon race at 100 mm, now running a Reba at 115.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vmax911
    I did get a ride in this afternoon. I think the bike rides great! For some reason the bike feels faster (acceleration wise) than my hardtail. Proably just new bike excitement. I did notice a clunking noise on really rough terrain. Turns out my rear derailleur is hutting the rear pivot at time. It's probably just a b-screw adjustment, but I'll leave that for the drivetrain forum. But it did make me wonder if anyone knows the torque specs for the pivots or shock mounting hardware. It may be something I want to check every now and then. Here's a pic from today (better than in the garage).
    Bike looks great...nice build!!

  41. #41
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    I'm running my Tora at 115mm also.

  42. #42
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    Glad I saw your thread...Ordered the frame and almost bought a Headset.
    -Don "LordDRIFT" Draper.

  43. #43
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    bobs-bikes has a 20% sale now which makes their 2008 xc604 about $340. Can't beat that.

  44. #44
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    damn I wish I would have caught that 20% off sale. OP, how much did you snatch that frame up for from the black friday sale?

  45. #45
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    coop, offer is good thru 3/17. should be able to get one still.

  46. #46
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    it still shows $399 on their website...is there a coupon I have to put in?

  47. #47
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    ok, found the coupon, got the 20% off. but of course they only have Med left...lol. I think I'm about inbetween M and L, I'm 5' 11" about 250lbs. I currently ride a M- GT i-Drive with specs of height- 20", standover, 31". The KHS M has a height of 17" and standover of 28.5". The GT is right on with the standover, and I have my seat up pretty high, so loosing 3" in frame height would really be negative. damn. guess I will have to order the orange one from wheel world in L. The L KHS specs are height, 19" and standover is 29.8.

  48. #48
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    any coupon codes for wheel world?

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by coop26
    damn I wish I would have caught that 20% off sale. OP, how much did you snatch that frame up for from the black friday sale?
    The black friday sale was 20% off. So I got the frame for $240 +S/H

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by coop26
    damn I wish I would have caught that 20% off sale. OP, how much did you snatch that frame up for from the black friday sale?
    They had the same sale at Christmas, so I got mine at $240 + sh as well. I believe its still a good deal at $299 though. Wouldn't hurt to call them if you are trying to get it less than posted.

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