Motobecane Fly Team 29 Ti upgrades?
I have the Motobecane Fly Team 29 Ti with the 2011 XO build in size 15.5 as a 5' 7" 140 lbs rider. At the rate I'm upgrading it, it seems I'm upgrading everything except the frame, fork, XO (shifters, F/R der) and X9 (cassette/brakeset) level components.
My upgrade path:
Handlebars - 560mm is way too narrow. I came from 745mm, but settled with 660mm for weight.
Grips - Thin foam with a hex shape. Just not my taste.
Stem - 100mm +/-6d stem. I swapped to a shorter stem w/negative rise, and moved all my steerer tube headset spacers on top of it to get the handlebar lower. I could've probably stuck with the stock stem.
Saddle - Mine had an issue with one of the rails having play in the rear. If you bounced in the saddle at all, it'd make a hollow metal hitting plastic shell sound. Decently comfortably, I would've maybe liked it if it weren't so annoying.
Seatpost - 350mm setback. Not enough for a 29.5" inseam for efficient pedaling. Went with a 400mm carbon post, but noticed there are J&L 27.2 ti posts in 400mm on eBay for fairly cheap.
Tires/tubes - Kenda SB8. These just aren't a wise choice up front, and rear if you play in rocks, due to weak sidewalls, and the tubes are super thin and aren't even powdered. I went with Ikon EXO F/R and converted to tubeless. Kendas lasted 200miles before sidewall on the rear gave out. If I weren't currently in SoCal, I would've got a meatier tire up front.
Brake Rotor - 160mm 2011 G3 Cleansweep. Upgraded to 185mm up front to handle my speed/comfort level and since my rear was bent/warped (possibly from factory), I swapped my non warped front to the back.
Crankset - 27/42 gearing is relatively high for a 29er--rarely use the high gears except DH on smooth pavement and never spin them out, 3 bolt 86 BCD nearly impossible to find rings for in sizes other than 42t (forget about 1x10), poor front shifting performance (vastly inferior to XX). It develops a creak too sometimes in the left crankarm. Gonna repack the bearings following the guide on the drivetrain forum--apparently Mega EXO/V-Drive BBs have poor seals.
Wheelset - Flexy laterally and goes out of true very easily--going fast through rocks taco'd the front and going fast on rutty trails threw the rear out of true; bladed spokes can be a pain to true. Rear freewheel may have poor seals--I rode through puddles on a dusty trail. Can spin the wheel off the ground and hear the freewheel grinding on sand. Same with the front with the grinding sound, though not as bad. Going to take a look inside after I upgrade.
Hopefully, these last 2 are the last upgrades, besides maybe changing the chain a bit early. I feel that the upgrades were worth it. I'm beginning to appreciate my bike a bit more. I was kind of down, since it didn't ride as well as my Gary Fisher, but after upgrades (especially tires and tubeless and finding the tire pressure sweet spot) and especially after test riding some relatively higher end FS 26" bikes and doing some group rides, I think I'll be keep this bike for quite a while. It's extremely good at XC and pedaling and I originally was using it for light AM on Mt Beacon and fairly technical XC parts in Stewart, but now since I'm in SoCal which has very buff trails with only erosion ruts as obstacles really, I feel it's a perfect fit. I do rather well skill and speed wise with the locals.
New buyers should research upgrades before buying to see if buying a complete bike is worth it over buying the frame. The wheels are the most expensive upgrade with the crankset next. A set of quality tires is also moderately expensive at about $100 a set.
Other owners, how have you upgraded you Fly 29 Ti?
Last edited by Varaxis; 12-13-2010 at 05:34 PM.
Nothing rides as well as my GF, but she does not like group rides.
Originally Posted by Varaxis
I upgraded to wider CF handlebars as stock ones are hilariously narrow. And it seems that I'll be changing wheelset come this spring. I just lost a spoke, plus damaged them in general after smashing into a curb. But yeah, they are pretty flexy on the turns.
Any recommendations for the wheelset?
I don't know about your budget, but I'm going for a solid set of quality wheels that can be rebuilt easily. No special spokes or anything. DT Swiss 240 (Hadley if I wanted to splurge more) hubs, Mavic XM819 rim or Stan's Crest or Flow, Sapim Race spokes or DT Super Comp spokes makes a pretty solid wheel, which matches my weight and riding style.
Not a fan of King Hubs or noisy instant engage hubs really. Ruled out American Classic. Doubtful about Cobalt Wheels. Looking to only spend 600, but may go up to 800 if it makes a significant difference.
I might just visit LaceMine29.com since Mike C. (mikesee on these boards) can do all the thinking for you and I hear he's good.
Hey, since you're here. Mind doing a test with the Vuelta wheels? I notice that the flex with the wheels combined with the flex of the frame/fork allow the QR to disengage sometimes. I now tighten my QRs to so much that when I go to reinstall them, it's practically a must that I "spread" the tabs on the frame/fork to get the wheel on them.
Test: firmly engage the QR in the rear so that the wheel feels secure enough (doesn't wobble in the drop outs and make noise, but not cranked down). Lift the saddle so the rear wheel lifts off the ground with the front still on the ground and let it freefall from about 3-4', while holding onto the handlebar.
Doing this test to measure chain tension and the limit before my chain drops off my chainrings up front, I had my rear wheel come out the drop outs. I wanted to find out if it's a common issue with this build.
Damn wheels are pricy. I was looking at BWW as I got a set of 26ers few years back. http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com.../prod_134.html it's still about 500bucks for a set. DT240 hubs you mentioned are $400 alone. Plus me being in Canada adds more taxes/shipping, ugh.
I didn't do the test yet, but will. I have to install a spoke today (snapped yesterday). My wheels are totally busted. Next time I'll get a cheap set to commute in -25C weather... and take off XTR stuff in favor of single speed.
Stan's Crest with ZTR hubs is a solid $450--a major upgrade in strength and weight over the Vuelta XRP team, but I figure too close to being a sidegrade when I'm open to spending this much. The only difference is hub quality between these and some I'm considering. You can afford to roll on cheap hubs without maintenance. I'd rather roll with some longer lasting, smoother, faster spinning wheels and keep them that way with regular maintenance. Wheels are one of the top 3 areas you can upgrade for significant performance gains--frame and fork are the other 2--also, it's not a coincidence how these 3 areas have products that retail from under $100 to over $2000 with $600-900 tending to be the "sweet spot" for high performance value.
Hadley Hubs are designed with a single seal for minimal drag caused by additional seals. They spin extremely well, aren't noisy, relatively beefy, and Mr. Hadley offers great support. Keep them dry and clean and they go a bit longer before needing to service them. DT has better sealing, but doesn't roll as fast, and still they recommend rather frequent maintenance, though you can go a bit longer on em. They're both extremely easy to open up to clean with degreaser and regrease. I plan on fixing up the Vueltas a bit after replacing them to see if I can get a decent amount of cash out of them.