Well, I finally broke down and bought myself a 07 SJ Comp at the largest Specialized dealer in Northern California-Mikes Bikes. Yes I am finally replacing my 04 SJ FSR, which was the only Specialized bike I have ever had any problems with. I also had the dealer swap out the shifters and both derailleurs for Shimano XT components: SL-M770 pod shifters, M772 shadow RD and FD M773. When I got the bike home I swapped out the OEM Truvalti Stylo cranks for my XT M760 and installed the new PD 50 pedals on the Shimano cranks. Next I installed my Thompsons seat post and stem along with my Easton handle bars and Obi grips.
The next morning I took the bike out on a ten mile ride and discovered that the rear brake was dragging and that the front rotor was warped. I also learned that the OEM Resolution Pro tires have very little lateral grip in light gravel. So when I got home I aligned the rear caliper, which fixed the rear brake problem then I installed my 2 year old Mavic Crossland wheel set with a 6 month old XT cassette and Armadillo Elite Fast Trak Pro tires. Unfortunately it has rained like cats and dogs since that day so I have not had a chance to test out the new modifications. I will need to go back to dealer to get the front rotor fixed as well.
The other thing I noticed about the rear Juicy 5 brake is that a squish sound emanates from the lever when it is compressed. Will this sound dissipate as the brake system wears in or is there air in the system?
The 07 Fox Float RL fork and the 07 Fox Triad seem a lot harsher over gravel than my 05 Fox Vanilla RLC and 05 Triad does. Next I will let air out of the fork and shock to allow more sag and a cushier ride.
Lastly, how does the OEM wheel set hold up? The DT Swiss X430 rims laced with 32 DT Swiss spokes on paper looks like good parts. The rear Shimano M525 hub may not be fancy but is very durable and the front stout hub seems to function well except for its quick release, which on my other bikes loosens up after about 3 month of riding.
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