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  1. #1
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    Patch Monkey (aka Bacardi Monkey, Rum Monkey)

    FINALLY got my "new to me" Karate Monkey built up. It's a 2006 medium in brown with a blue KM fork.

    Picked up this frame and fork combo from fellow member deeeight (thanks again to a great seller!!! Pleasure, as always). Price was right so I figured i'd take the chance with the frame size. I was worried it would be too small. I usually opt for a Large, but with thanks to a "borrow" from my Kona Blast, via the 50mm rise handlebar, this medium Monkey works! (I like the 615-ish mm ETT and 110+mm HT layouts mostly, "sweet spot") The short 90mm headtube was what really concerned me.

    I was able to take it out tonight for it's shakedown run. A short trip to the bank on city streets quickly showed me several things about this delicious lil' frame ...

    I can handle a medium. The ETT is similar to my 60 cm Cross Check and that was fine, so that's all good.

    I also learned I like the "feel" of the KM a lot more than the CC. I purposefully did this first build with the same tires and brakes as what I had run previously on the CC and the KM feels more ... lenient. I appreciate that.

    Those are the bigger points worth mentioning. I'll spare y'all the minor details and get on with the pics! That's what we really care about anyways, right?!?!?!

    Keeping in mind this was built up heavily influenced by rum and a desire to not need to buy any parts right away (but soon enough, of course). A "patch job" ...

    2006 medium KM frame and fork
    Avid v-brakes
    Kenda Karma 1.9 tires
    3x1 drivetrain featuring;
    Sram X0 GripShift shifter and X7 front derailleur
    22-32-36 chainrings on a Shimano Deore 175mm crankset
    16T Misfit Psycles aluminum cog
    Shimano Alfine tensioner
    ... and wheels and grips and blahblahblah
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Patch Monkey (aka Bacardi Monkey, Rum Monkey)-009_gimp.jpg  

    Patch Monkey (aka Bacardi Monkey, Rum Monkey)-010_gimp.jpg  

    Patch Monkey (aka Bacardi Monkey, Rum Monkey)-013_gimp.jpg  

    Last edited by AndrewTO; 05-11-2013 at 08:40 AM.
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  2. #2
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    Love the bike and the build! I like that drive train alot too. Looking forward tk long term reviews and updates! Congrats

  3. #3
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    Hey Brad, thanks for the props. I've always enjoyed your postings, also.

    I will be using this thread for exactly the purposes I describe - like a blog thread.

    I don't mind blabbing for a moment about the drivetrain ...

    I've noticed a "common denominator" of sorts when it comes to most ?x1 drivetrain builds - it's psychologically handicapped. I find that the majority of riders are too used to thinking in wide range, then they try to build a 3x1 and after a few short rides proclaim "it sucks because ... ". That's fine, they have their opinion - I shared it at one time thinking the same way, but then was enlightened when I realized what *I* wanted was something less wide range. In the past i've run the conventional/typical 22-32-44 chain ring set up and didn't like it. I always found that I could only get 2 out of 3 right. I found that for me what works best was not to do the same thing everyone else was doing but to think about what I really wanted to achieve.

    The drivetrain you see on Patch Monkey was actually happily residing on a 2004 Kona Blast that I picked up earlier this year. The drivetrain on that bike was in horrible need of attention - the financial kind involved with complete replacement. With all the parts I had in my bin - okay, binS - I realized I had another chance at a 3x1, so I went for it, but with new thinking this time. I spent time staring at my gearing spreadsheet and realized my own "mistake" with past attempts. In the past I was limited with gearing selection, but this time around I had a 36T Salsa SS chain ring which I though would work well at helping to narrow down the range. On my first ride, with the same aforementioned 22-32-36 @ 16T gearing, I was pleasantly surprised. Success! Not perfect, but far, FAR better than before. I found *my* secret to 3x1 ... think narrow minded!

    Right now i'm thinking the 22T needs to go in favour of a 26T so I can get closer to my SS-preferred 32x20 (46.4 gear inches - the 26x16 equals 47.1, plenty close enough) for the rough stuff ... or perhaps a 24T with something different out back ... or perhaps - well, you get the idea.

    Summary - my find was to stop thinking so open, pay attention to my *needs* and get narrow minded with the 3x1. I'm far closer than i've ever been, it has cost me very little (and I get to keep my Grip Shift yay!), i've learned more about me and biking and it works great on a bike i'm trying to build inexpensively with great diversity (diversity = pavement pounder with SS-like trail manners ... and an extra gear for flat trails). Win, win!

    But GAWD that blue fork is killing me!
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  4. #4
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    Love the mismatch, I've got a red KM with a gray fork.

    I've been thinking of switching from ss to a 1x3.. glad to hear it's working for you. Do you spend most of the time in the middle ring, then shift up if your in a fast section or shift down if it's a long climb?

  5. #5
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    J - thank you. I don't mind mismatch if the colours "work well together". I find the name fitting.

    As for your Q - it really depends on what i'm feeling at the moment. Some days I feel a little stronger than others, so I use what my body says for the given moment. Ultimately i'm looking for best compromise - between commuting on road and riding whatever off road.

    More specifically ... (if you're brave enough to read it all lol )

    In it's current configuration with the 22-32-36 @ 16T it's probably the worst possible gearing for me on single track. The 22x16 is WAY too light a gear when climbing, but the 32x16 is good for flats. That's why i'm thinking i'm better off with a 26-32-36 ... the 26x16 is more like the 32x20 that I can manage for majority of my single track riding (i'm a tall scrawny guy that doesn't have much strength in my legs). With that and the 32x16 good for flats i'm set for my off road riding. The 32x16 and 36x16 work well for my commute to work, or even riding to the small, more immediate local "trail" "offerings" (yes, two separate quotes).

    The bonus with the 36T, imho and imae, as opposed to the 44T one might typically use, is that you have more ground clearance, less weight and a more useable gear (again, for lightweights like me). Perhaps some points are more valid than others for some riders, but whatever - to each their own.

    I find the most important part is that you have a well tuned drive train. It don't mean $h!+ if it won't shift. This is where Sram's Grip Shift front shifter reigns supreme for it's fine tuning of derailleur position. Good timing on shifts helps, too.
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  6. #6
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    Finally got it out this past weekend. I replaced the 22T granny with a 26T and that was a biiiiiiiiig help. Through all of the double- and single-track I ran I only shifted to the 32T a couple of times, even then it was short-lived.

    Bike ran GREAT! The geometry reminds me greatly of my Misfit Psycles diSSents, just in a steel version. It was very familiar to me, predictable in the handling. The "small" (to me) 1.9 Kenda Karmas did a great job of keeping me on track, literally. lol I would certainly appreciate a bigger tire with a more aggressive tread pattern, like a Nevegal. Actually, of EVERYTHING I could possibly *try* to complain about with the ride - and i'm a picky bugger that sadly has no problems finding faults - I would say the ONLY thing missing was bigger tires. Yeah, even the v-brakes were doing fine! But I certainly would have appreciated tires with more volume.

    The geometry of this frame, imho, has absolutely nothing to do with the Cross Check. They're not big changes between the two (I have a 60cm to compare against, as I mentioned earlier), but they're noticeable on the trail, at least to me. I can easily say that if I keep my CC it'll be primarily commuter duty, while the KM would be dual duty or perhaps even just ss.

    So that's my rum-sloshed blabbing for now. A couple of pics to keep future searchers happy and i'll post more updates in the future as time progresses.

    Now where's my spray paint?!?!??!?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Patch Monkey (aka Bacardi Monkey, Rum Monkey)-003_gimp.jpg  

    Patch Monkey (aka Bacardi Monkey, Rum Monkey)-008_gimp.jpg  

    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  7. #7
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    Great looking build, very practical. I dig the 3x1 drivetrain as well, never seen that before, very cool.

  8. #8
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    uhmm, long time registered user, cannot see the photos?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jvossman View Post
    uhmm, long time registered user, cannot see the photos?
    Hhhmmmm, interesting. Upon inspection of my My Photos page several of my latest uploaded photos have gone missing. Other pics were of my Surly Cross Check.

    I wonder what's up with that?!?!?! Perhaps MTBR Mods are becoming racist?

    Serisouly though, I have no idea what's happened. I haven't touched my account and haven't been on here much lately because of family issues.
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jvossman View Post
    uhmm, long time registered user, cannot see the photos?
    Same here, happening with a lot of threads...


    Sounds like a sweet bike though! Love the idea of the 3x1

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