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  1. #1
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    2013 SC Chameleon build

    Reposting this from the General Discussion forum.

    Just picked up a 2013 SC Chameleon frame. Think I got a pretty good deal for it, $550 shipped on ebay. I've always been a big fan of SC bikes (I own a SC Blur LT). I recently moved to D.C. and nearly bought a commuter bike until one day I realized that I had stumbled across the perfect excuse (not that I needed one), to add a HT to the stable. I know, some of you are probably cringing right now, a badass HT for cruising around in the city!!! That's not the intent, I assure you. I weighed the pros and cons of owning a commuter bike or road bike for getting around and at the end of the day, decided a HT with two sets of wheels (one for daily cruising and one for hitting up the local trails) would be the perfect solution. I figured having a HT to bomb around in the city would be much more enjoyable to me than some plain commuter bike, regardless of comfort/efficiency/etc. Now onto the build...
    I'm very open to suggestions and everyone's advice as I really don't keep up with all the new developments in MTB technology. I want this build to be true to the bikes name, adaptable in any terrain. It will see the full gambit of urban commuting/urban fun, dirt parks and XC riding. To start it off, I'll discuss what fork I was considering. I've seen leftover Fox Float 34 150mm forks for some pretty good deals. It seems like most riders appreciate the extra confidence that the larger stanchions provide. Also, I'm kind of old school with gearing, but have thought that this bike would be a great opportunity to try a 1x9 or 1x10 set up. Any thoughts? Stay tuned...

  2. #2
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    LOL I was so watching the same frame I believe.

  3. #3
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    Haha. So you're the one that kept jacking the price up on the bids! Hopefully it's in really good condition. $550 isn't bad considering they went for $750 new, but I'm sure I missed out when the 2014 came out and leftovers were being heavily discounted online.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by cfarrell View Post
    Haha. So you're the one that kept jacking the price up on the bids! Hopefully it's in really good condition. $550 isn't bad considering they went for $750 new, but I'm sure I missed out when the 2014 came out and leftovers were being heavily discounted online.
    Actually I did not even bid on it, but I was watching it and thought of snatching it up.

    Looking forward to the build, I have been waiting on someone to get the 2015 one because i might order one.

  5. #5
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    I have one and it's gone between 26er wheels and 650B. Incredibly versatile machine- had it built up as a double, 1x10, and a 140mm Fox 32.

    I hate front derailleurs so I would say go for a 1x all the way.... if you need the range maybe even go 1x11.

    On the fork choice...
    Ultimately what you want to run will depend more on where you ride, your riding style and preference, and less so on this frame- it can do pretty much whatever you want.

    Personally I would say, run a fixed travel fork between 120-140. If you are heavier,or ride very aggresively, the 34mm stanchions might help, otherwise the 32mm should be fine. That range will be suitable for most trail riding and if you're riding around town just lockout the fork.

    For "XC" riding like you said, a 150 is overkill, and while that's within the range the frame is able to take, the front end will wander a bit too much on steep climbs. Plus... it's still a hardtail, so if you're riding it in terrain that you really "need" a 150 for, you're on the wrong bike.

    While I don't like travel adjustable forks, it sounds like you want to have the versatility, you might consider sacrificing some fork performance for having the range of travel- something like a 110-140 travel adjustable fork might work well.

    Lastly, consider a 650B specific fork, if you want even more versatility. With a 650B fork that has a 42mm offset, and an axle to crown length of 520mm or less, you can switch interchangeably between 26 and 650B wheels if you like.

    A 650B, 130mm Rockshox Revelation would work well in the 650B application.

    HTH

  6. #6
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    Thanks man! Great advice. I never thought about setting up the bike with a 650B specific fork. I take it I can't just throw any 650 fork on this frame and expect it to work though, right? My thoughts are that it would potentially screw up the geometry, as you said 150mm travel is the max this bike is set up for, so if I'm running 150mm of travel on a fork set up for 650B wheels...perhaps not so good?

    Update on the build. Frame cam in today. I'll post pics tomorrow. Excellent condition so I'm pretty stoked with my purchase. Guess it's time to pick a fork and drivetrain. An SRAM X0 1 x 10 set up sound about right?

  7. #7
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    Looking forward to the pics, you should take plenty of pics and post them here of your build.

  8. #8
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    Double post

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    Quote Originally Posted by cfarrell View Post
    Thanks man! Great advice. I never thought about setting up the bike with a 650B specific fork. I take it I can't just throw any 650 fork on this frame and expect it to work though, right? My thoughts are that it would potentially screw up the geometry, as you said 150mm travel is the max this bike is set up for, so if I'm running 150mm of travel on a fork set up for 650B wheels...perhaps not so good?



    Update on the build. Frame cam in today. I'll post pics tomorrow. Excellent condition so I'm pretty stoked with my purchase. Guess it's time to pick a fork and drivetrain. An SRAM X0 1 x 10 set up sound about right?
    It's more the A-C length that you have to watch out for. More a-c raises the front end and slackens out the headtube, so you don't want to exceed the recommended range. A Fox 32 and RS revelation 650b set at 130 come in at around 519mm, which is between most 26" forks at 140-150 so you'd be OK. You'd need to watch the front end a little more on climbs.
    Is there a particular reason you think you will need 150mm on travel?

  10. #10
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    Not particularly. It's just that the 34mm stanchion forks I had looked at all were 150mm plus. At the end of the day, I probably don't REALLY need either 34mm stanchions or 150mm travel, so perhaps it's time to start looking at more 32 forks. Thanks!

  11. #11
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    Yeah- you really only need the 34 when it comes to longer travel of at least 140 or if you're a heavier rider.
    Some forks can be lowered, but if it's Fox 34 150 you're looking at, I think the minimum is 150, IIRC. The other thing is that the 34mm forks have additional A-C length beyond just the increased travel (i.e., a 150mm 34 fork is longer than a 150mm 32 fork), so it might be impractical to spec a 650B 34mm fork.

  12. #12
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    Decided to go the 650 (27.5") route for the versatility. I talked with Joe over at SC and he said as long as I kept between 120-140mm I should be alright as far as AC lengths go. He said 160 is the max for this frame. Went with a Fox Float 32 140mm. Got a great deal from a MTBR forum member. Thanks Ken!!

  13. #13
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    Got any pictures yet?

  14. #14
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    Pics!

    As you can see, the frame is in really great shape. Only one small chip in the paint was all I could find. Definitely as described on ebay as "near perfect" condition. Has anyone seen the 13 Chameleons with the Chameleon sticker on the top of the top tube and a sticker on the head tube instead of a badge? Just something I noticed that was different. Gotta love the color too. The intensity of the yellow did not come out in the photos on ebay. Reminds me of Valentino Rossi's colors (any motorcycle racing fans out there?). Think I might need to find myself a cheap bike building stand. Stay tuned for more pics!

    2013 SC Chameleon build-img_0369.jpg2013 SC Chameleon build-img_0371.jpg

  15. #15
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    pics

    2013 SC Chameleon build-img_0368.jpg2013 SC Chameleon build-img_0370.jpg

  16. #16
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    Nice! Yup- mine's the same- that top tube sticker and headtube badge is pretty cool. Good luck!

  17. #17
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    Yeah same frame I was watching lol. I should have bought it

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    Ha. I'm glad you didn't! Honestly, $550 is about the MOST I'd want to pay for a used frame when I could get a new one for $200 more. I'm kind of glad to hear that this frame will accept some 27.5" wheel set ups. Definitely feel like I'm getting more bang for my buck that way. More pics coming this week. Can anyone recommend a good by cheap bikestand? I don't need to be breaking the bank on Park Tools.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cfarrell View Post
    Decided to go the 650 (27.5") route for the versatility. I talked with Joe over at SC and he said as long as I kept between 120-140mm I should be alright as far as AC lengths go. He said 160 is the max for this frame. Went with a Fox Float 32 140mm. Got a great deal from a MTBR forum member. Thanks Ken!!
    You also should consider BB height when going 650b. The wheel diameter alone will raise the bb approx .40-50" depending on tires. The lower bb height of a Chameleon is part of it's great handling. I built up a '13 Chameleon SS 650b with a 100mm 650b Fox 32, which has the same ac height as a 120mm 26" Fox 32. My bb height is 12.8", bike rides great.

  20. #20
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    Thanks. Great point. I think I'll probably start with 26" wheels, but I like the ability to try out 27.5s if I want to.

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