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  1. #1
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    Mod question.... (drivetrain upgrade - mod title edit)

    Well I got a Rockhopper disc since I figured it would be a good beginner bike, to see if I like mountain biking, and I have since found that I do. I'm considering changing my shifters, since I'm not too crazy about the shifter/brake combo that came on the bike. I'm also not crazy about the fact that the shifters are the same ones that are used on like wal-mart bikes, plus they are just plain huge and ugly. I think I want to get some SRAM grip shifters, since I have heard good things about them, and I like the clean look of the grip shifters too. But I'm curious as to what all I would need to get to make this happen. Here's what I was looking at.

    -Avid speed dial 7 brake levers
    -SRAM grip shifters (XO or X9)
    -SRAM reaer derailleur
    -New cassette, if the shifters were 9 speed
    -9 speed chain, if the shifters were 9 speed

    Is that it? Would 9 speed shifters work with an 8 speed cassette, or would it jack things up? Even though it's an almost brand new bike, I love tinkering with things, and making them my own, so it seems like a fun little project that would be relatively cheap.Oh, and also, what grips would I have to use if I got grip shifters? Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
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    nobody can help?

  3. #3
    I'm SUCH a square....
    Reputation: bigpedaler's Avatar
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    9-speed and 8-speed are not compatible. get the 9 gear set.

    SRAM is a good choice, reliability is through the roof! OK if you want twisties, but the x.9 triggers are AWESOME!
    A bike is the only drug with no bad side effects....

  4. #4
    56-year-old teenager
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    I've done stuff like this, converting older 7 speed bikes to the "new" 8 speed standard. It gets expensive fast with minimal performance benefit. You're putting spiffy parts on a mediocre frame. (Can you say "t*rd polishing?")

    This kind of thing pops up all the time on these boards. It's tempting until you figure out that it's cheaper to buy all the good parts already attached to a better bike than it is to buy them one at a time at retail prices.

    I'd suggest you save your pennies, sell the Rockhopper to someone who'll appreciate it, and find a garage sale bike that's closer to what you want. Either that or just ride the s#!t out of it as it is, until you wear it out and/or can afford a better bike.

    Of course, if you find the parts you need at garage sale prices, then go for the mods.

  5. #5
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    is your Rockhopper an 8-speed now?

    If so, just buy a pair of 8 speed SRAM ATTACK twist shifters off ebay (saw them for $25)- they are compatible with the rest of your present drivetrain. They work great and look good too. As everyone else mentioned, don't spend lots more money on this bike- just have fun and ride it into the ground. Next bike, you will better know what to look for.

  6. #6
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    well this is a pretty new bike, so I won't be getting rid of it for a while. the benefit that I like of the grip shifters is how reliable they are. I figured with buying parts on ebay, it wouldn't cost too much. I was also thinking that my next bike will probably be a frame-up build, so any parts I put on this bike, I could pull off and put on the next one. i dunno, just something I'mthinking about.

  7. #7
    Are you gonna eat that?
    Reputation: Kyoseki's Avatar
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    Calling a RockHopper a mediocre bike is definitely doing it a disservice, I've been riding an old Hard Rock for 4 years and it's held up to my clyde ass just fine, it's required a whole lot less futzing with than my dualie.

    That said, converting it to a 9 speed drivetrain gets expensive fast and will probably cost a significant portion of what the bike did - figure $110 for x.9 shifters, $100 for x.9 derailleur, $40 for a 9 speed cassette and $30 for the chain, plus an hour or two labor and you're looking at well over $300.

    If you just don't like the shifter/brake lever combo, do what dumper suggested and get 8 speed grip shifters (dirt cheap - you can get 8 speed trigger shifters as well, you just have to make sure the brand matches your rear derailleur) and leave the rest of the drivetrain alone - honestly, even with my fat ass, I find the 8 speed setup on my HR perfectly capable.

    (as an aside, spellchecker doesn't like "drivetrain" but is perfectly ok with "futzing")
    Last edited by Kyoseki; 06-12-2007 at 02:19 PM.

  8. #8
    Big Boned
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    Save Your $$$

    Definitely, don't waste your money -- if you have 8-speed now, buy some Attacks on eBay or elsewhere, score some inexpensive Avid or Shimano brake levers, and wait until you wear out your cassette and chain before considering a major upgrade. That way you can decide if you like Grippies before you invest major $$$ in the full-on ESP system.

    With 8 speed, the only thing you'll really miss out on is the option of a 34-tooth granny in back. But you can get a 32. Otherwise, it's fine, especially if you live in the flatlands. I still have two bikes running 8-speed, one of which I was racing (and winning) on until 3 years ago. Not that Sport Clyde is all that competitive, I'm not hot spit or anything, but still - never felt handicapped by 8-speed -- plus, you can almost always find good deals on 8-speed chains and cassettes.

  9. #9
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    well i put a small bid on a set of SRAM X9 twisties on ebay yesterday before anoybody replied to this, and ended up winning them for $22 lol. So i dunno, maybe I'll use 'em, maybe somebody on here will get a good deal for them. we'll see I guess.I was hoping I'd lose and just pick up some attacks lol.

    What's the difference between the 1:1 and the 2:1 shifters?

  10. #10
    Big Boned
    Reputation: Manmountain Dense's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanIanBoBian
    What's the difference between the 1:1 and the 2:1 shifters?
    That ratio refers to the amount of cable the shifter pulls to move the derailleur a given distance. 1:1 requires less cable pull, hence the theory that "X" systems have snappier shifting @ 1:1 than Shimano @ 2:1, which requires double the amount of cable pull to move the derailleur the same distance. That's SRAM's spin on it, anyway. XTR is pretty damn snappy...

    The two systems are not inter-compatible, so if you want to upgrade to X9 for your rear shifter, you need an "X" rear derailleur, too. You can mix and match, so an X9 shifter with an X7 rear D is fine, and vice-versa, as long as you're talking about "X" components. I have full X0 on one bike and X9/X7 mix on another, and they're both great, though X0 is really light action and buttery. Yes, and in case you're keeping count, I have a lot of bikes.

    SRAM's 2:1 shifters like Attacks will work with Shimano rear derailleurs.

    X0 and X9 front shifters are compatible with Shimano front derailleurs.

  11. #11
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    so should I still not use the x9 shifters I got for $20?

    I almost want to use them just because I got such a good deal on them. I could probably pick up a rear derailleur and cassette on ebay for pretty cheap, and then I just need a chain. Then when I'm ready to build a bike, I'll already have my drivetrain taken care of for the most part. Help, I'm stuck lol.

  12. #12
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    If you've got them, go for it. Going 9 spd is no big deal from 8. Heck I've done it from 7 speed (that meant a new rear wheel as well). The basic conversion doesn't net you much, but it gives you the option of far more serious upgrades as parts wear (lightweight cassettes, derailleurs). Also the higher-end shifters do shift noticably better.

    And Rockhoppers a nice bikes. Components are so-so, but the frames are excellent. I'd not worry about doing serious upgrading to one.

    Of course, I'm currently futzing around with the XT front derailleur on my XT/LX/Dura-Ace steel Rockhopper roadie conversion.

  13. #13
    I Love my Rize
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    9 speed sucks

    I run a 8 speed Sram X9 rear derailleur matched with X9 8 speed gripshifters and a Sram PG 850 cassette in 11-32 and PC 58 chain and is the most awesome shifting on the planet. Can you say fast and durable which equals perfection. They shift so fast and accurate it scares me like it knows when to shift before I do.
    Early to bed early to RIZE makes a man healthy, wealthy <(scratch that) and wize.

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanIanBoBian
    so should I still not use the x9 shifters I got for $20?

    I almost want to use them just because I got such a good deal on them. I could probably pick up a rear derailleur and cassette on ebay for pretty cheap, and then I just need a chain. Then when I'm ready to build a bike, I'll already have my drivetrain taken care of for the most part. Help, I'm stuck lol.

    If you like the bike , just upgrade......of course when you're done upgrading you're gonna be like " oooops I could have gotten a different bike for the same money "but screw that man...have fun! At least I won't feel that bad that I spent more on upgrades then on the bike....

    New rear d. X--7
    new X-7 shifters and Avid 7 speed dial brake levers
    these will go on the bike Thursday
    new brakes Avid BB-7
    new casette Sram 970 ( light like a feather)
    new chain Sram powerlink
    new front d Shimano XT
    new wheels Singletrack on XT hubs
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    "What we do in life echoes in eternity"

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