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  1. #1
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    Cool-blue Rhythm Budget Hardtail XC Build USD$1000 - 100% COMPLETED

    PS: I have posted this on Starbike Weenie Forum

    After a hiatus of nearly 2 years, I have started a new project in October with following requirements/restrictions/specification:


    1. USD$1000 on Bike Parts all inclusive. Would like to spend more but that's what I have
    2. Built around a VERY specific frame (I LOVED this frame so much despite the obese weight)
    3. Bike must be reliable and dependable to race 10 XC events in 2018. Mostly XCM type race and limited XCO
    4. Bike is a Hill Climber XC variant with short travel and wide range gearing ratios
    5. Built to suit my riding style and sizing
    6. Must be 100% DIY - backyard project sort of stuffs
    7. Buy cheap policy, NOS and good conditioned used components are preferred


    It will be a sized 17" 26er XC Hardtail. Why 26er? well I am 164cm tall and with a steady weight of 57-58kg - rather on the smallish side. Yes I have raced a 29er before in 2015 and 2016 but ultimately to ride a 29er, I was forced to use a sized 15.5" frame which I found to be a bit finicky to my bones. I did switch to a 650b somewhere in between but still it was a sized 15.5" frame. Late 2015 I switched to a sized 16.5 26er and have been getting better results in XC races - with less punishing after effects post race. So I made up my mind that I will stick to 26er 16.5-17".


    Let's start into the juicy parts then.


    Stage 1: The Frame

    I have been eyeballing this frame for quite a while. It was a NOS BMC TeamElite 05 Aluminum 6061 Sized 17". The perfect size and geometry that I have been craving for. I have had great experience before with Giant XTC 26er 16.5" and I was confident that this BMC would be better suited for my use. And the price was definitely spot on.

    Price: USD$ 123.00


    However, there's one BIG problem. It has the weight of an elephant!

    1883g for naked frame is outright obscene for any weight weenies. Apparently BMC decided to go for Apocalyptic durability for this frame with much thicker gauge than you would normally see on Taiwanese brands. Probably can support a rider up to 200kg without even creaking...LOL

    And so begin the extensive diet program - with the dark arts of Drillium, Hack, Grind and Shave of the good old 80s come into practice. The time when racers drilled and hacked their metal bikes to death....carbon fiber was probably exclusive only to NASA Space programs back then


    Paint Strip:


    Yep, it's 65g of solid paint scraped off, and that's not all of them. Some were swept away earlier


    And so I ended up still at 1.8kg after paint stripping - that's still 69g shaved by just removing the paint


    Many many hours later after extensive Drillium, hack, grind and shave - with removal of cantilever bosses, cable brake bosses, shortened headtube, shortened seat tube ends, drilled headtube, drilled BB housing, removed hydro hose bosses, grinded edges etc.......the bare Frame now weighs 1650g


    Yep I know, it is insanity to drill holes on frames......but I am doing this with full acknowledgement of the risks and implications. Bike builders of old has been drilling gaping holes on BB housing and headubes - I am just applying the idea to practice

    Next, finishing the frame with a pretty coat.

    Complete with decals and coat - Yamaha Star Grey color code

    And I am penalized with 16g of weight added in the final product. A weight penalty I am willing to absorb for a bit of eye-candy

    In the end, I managed to reduce 217gm from the original weight - not too shabby eh? XD



    Stage 2: Front Suspension

    Due to limited budget, I decided to use SR SunTour EPICON X1 100mm. I have had very good experiences with 26er EPICONs before so this was a no brainer.


    Price: USD$ 147.00 NOS Gen 1

    Weight: 1610g (1593g after steerer cut)


    Lower housing modification & hack

    40g shaved off the lower housing with removal of excess ridges which was meant to support heavier riders. Now this fork can only support 65kg max riders


    And so the initial weight after re-assembly was 1475g. Final weight is 1463g after further tune-ups. Oh yes, plain RED because I love the contrast vs the gunmetal frame color


    In total, 147g was removed from the forks. Now operating 80mm travel and without rebound dampening springs which I can live without


    Stage 3: Drivetrain

    I have decided on running 1X11 Mega Wide Range for this XC Climber.

    The Crankset:
    The cheapest option for a Shimano Hollowtech Crankset was an Alivio M4000 Triple. Totalled at USD$85 (Crankset + 32t Oval Chainring + Aluminum Chainring Bolts + Ti Bolts)



    Shimano Alivio stuffs are made to be used through zombie holocaust so it is impossible to break this thing . The weight at 1004g matches the sturdy built


    Initial attempt at conversion to 32t single ended up at 615g - NOT good enuff...


    That's more like it!. Crank Arm length was reduced to 165mm from 175mm - this primarily because I am more of a Spinner than Cruncher - spinning higher cadence with shorter cranks is less painful to my Hip Flexor. And shorter cranks are lighter too. The spider was totally reworked and substantial chunks of aluminum were shaved from the assembly. The Chainring gets traditional Drillium treatment too


    For a $85 crankset to weigh a mere 487g makes me a happy man indeed thats 517g gone from the original assembly!

    The Cassette:
    I jumped into the Mega Wide Range bandwagon and the cheapest 11-50t available in the market was a Bolany 11-50t 11 Speed priced at USD$42

    WHAAAT!!!! 660g! this thing weighs as much as someone's full bike here...LOL!

    And so I spent over 40 man hours on getting rid of the overtly excessive weights...with extreme Drillium, Grinding and MORE grinding hahaha

    First the Mega Cluster gets extreme makeover which resulted in 157gm removed





    Finally...

    395g isn't exactly a Weight Weenie standard, but for $42 cassette with a weight reduction of 265g overall...I would not complain

    The rest of the Drivetrain:

    Rear Derailleur - Shimano Ultegra RD-6800 SS Short Cage! got a bargain deal at USD$49.00 for an almost new RD sold by a Roadie fresh from his new bike. I have always suspected that a short cage RD would perform better on 1X system due to the stronger Cage springs and shorter chains, for as long the reach problem is solved for giant cogs (of which the RD Extender addresses) - now is the time to test my theories...

    And so the RD was originally 197g and I decided not to go ape shit on modding this unit. Just grinding works on the cage and replacement of Pulleys to Meroca Aluminum. End results is 182g. (Once I have the funds I will go for DuraAce version)

    The Rest -





    The remaining drivetrain parts are:
    - Shimano tuned length shifter cables (Free - already owned)
    - RD Extender ($7.30 New)
    - Shimano Alivio M4000 BB51 (Free - already owned)
    - KMC X11EL 116 Chains tuned length ($35 New)
    - Shimano Ultegra SL-RS700 1X11 Shifter ($74) Purchased practically new from an owner of folding bike. This shifter actually uses the same shifter chassis for XTR M9000 11spd. So at this price it was quite a bargain


    Assembled Groupset!: Mocked up dry run with my spare training wheels




    Hahaha, so a short cage RD does work on giant cogs. In fact the shifting performance was crisp and smooth. Even at 50t, the RD actually still have a bit of play to stretch flatter. And this means I don't really need a clutch RD because the SS cage tension was adequate to prevent chain slap.
    Last edited by Erwandy; 1 Week Ago at 08:32 AM. Reason: Project Completed

  2. #2
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    Stage 4: The Brakeset

    And so I went to buy a new Shimano BR-M477 new for USD$62. Pretty much the most common Non Series Shimano on most new bikes.




    As expected the brakeset is way over 500g at 561g to be precise.

    Inline with the insane modfication theme of the whole project, the mod for this brakeset took another gruelling 40 man hours to reduce the weight. Stage by stage pics below:









    The end product weighed at 365g exceeded my expectations. That is like 30g lighter than an XTR M9000 Race set hahaha. But honestly I do not know how it will perform, only time will tell.

    Mods were:
    - Four Ti Bolts tuned to length on calipers
    - Two Ti Bolts tuned to length on levers
    - Removed steel pivot bolts and replaced with Aluminum Rivets
    - Extreme grinding on every surfaces

    And also due to the VERY slim profile of the Chassis & Levers, I expect a hard crash on the handlebar would snap those things off. This is a risk I am willing to absorb and if it does happen I will just send it over to my Radiator repair man for Aluminum welding hahaha - rinse and repeat until to a point it is beyond repair.

    NEXT:
    Other components.
    Last edited by Erwandy; 4 Weeks Ago at 06:11 PM.

  3. #3
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    Did you somehow reinforce the cranks for the new pedal threads?
    2008 BMC Fourstroke 19-559 ISO (RIP in peace)
    2017 BMC Speedfox 25-622 ISO
    2017 Salsa Timberjack 40-584 ISO

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_joe View Post
    Subscribed

    Did you somehow reinforce the cranks for the new pedal threads?
    Yep, the structure gets stronger as it gets shorter and the weld points added some sort of brace at the back arms. Later I will add more updates.

  5. #5
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    Nice build!
    Kes

  6. #6
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    Amazing work!

  7. #7
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    Very well done! Subscribing as well

  8. #8
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    "And this means I don't really need a clutch RD because the SS cage tension was adequate to prevent chain slap. "

    I'd put some testing in on bumpy downhills when you're not pedalling. You may need a guide when you're in the mid to smaller gears.

  9. #9
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    Wow. That is a lot of man hours. Couldnt you just work those hours and then afford lighter stuff to begin with?

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    fxrextreme, RS VR6, jrhilado & all - Thanks. New updates due to upload in 30 minutes from now.

    eb1888, yep I will surely try that and see how it behaves. Thanks

    moefosho, part of this project was to satisfy my craving for mods. I enjoy the satisfaction of transforming something nondescript into something exciting. Also I need to be very mindful to keep the whole bike cost within the USD$1000 mark. Buying parts are easy....IF I have the funds LOL!

  11. #11
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    Stage 5: Other Components

    At this point. all the major work has been completed as you can see above - EXCEPT for wheelset of which for now I am running my old Training wheels. The Training wheels weighs 17XXg. When I have the time I will complete my custom built Stan's ZTR Podium MMX + DT Swiss Revolution Spokes + Affordable Hubs.

    So here's the rest of the items:

    Handlebar: $27

    Toray carbon fiber flat bar from TOSEEK - a Chinese Open Mold component maker which makes very neat components at affordable Cost. The weight shown was after length tune-up to 620mm

    Seatpost: Cost $29

    From TOSEEK as well. Length tuned to usable heights and upgraded with Ti Bolts. This one is due for further weight reduction work when I have the time to further trim the aluminum clamps

    Saddle: Cost $25

    Another TOSEEK Product. I choose this one because it's flatter than the other available options - which I hope will mate well with my sit bones

    Stem: Cost $36

    I honestly forgot the brand name of this stem. But I believe it's a Taiwanese piece and I have replaced all 6 bolts with Ti. Some work done to shave and cut aluminum parts then painted in Flat Black

    Seatclamp: Cost FREE

    Stock BMC Seatclamp. No mods for now but I will shave it down to below 20g

    Bottlecage: Cost $12

    Very decent weight for Bontrager cage. No mods done here....yet

    Disc Rotors: Cost $49

    Quaxar 160mm rotors from Taiwan. Very similar to Ashima

    Rear Caliper Mount: Cost FREE

    Included in the brakeset package, this was a single unit rear caliper mount. I cut them in two separate pieces and trim down the weight. Then replace the bolts with Ti (4x)

    QR Skewers: Cost $12

    Chinese RISK Titanium QR Skewers. VERY well built despite the low price

    Pedals: Cost $29

    Another Taiwanese component, Zeray. Currently modded to operate on single sided cleat clamps. SPD compatible. Will work on to reduce the weight to just below 200g soon by grinding off excess material on the axis

    Grips: Cost FREE

    LitePro Taiwanese grips. Neat and comfy

    Headset: Cost $13

    Another very neat LitePro product - and very light!

    And here's the current statistics on the build:


    The target is 8.4KG operating weight on race setup with the ZTR Podium wheelset later. I got the rims, DT spokes and Alu nipples for an unbelievable $29 off another MTBer who was upgrading to 29er


    And behold! I present you Osprey 26 - she's ready to rock




    Last edited by Erwandy; 3 Weeks Ago at 10:17 AM.

  12. #12
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    Nice work
    2008 BMC Fourstroke 19-559 ISO (RIP in peace)
    2017 BMC Speedfox 25-622 ISO
    2017 Salsa Timberjack 40-584 ISO

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    Amazing! like it!
    flyMTBfish

  14. #14
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    the_joe, Ausable & all. Thanks!

    Here's the shifting video:

  15. #15
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    Smooth shifting. A n-w chainring can help keep the chain on.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Smooth shifting. A n-w chainring can help keep the chain on.
    Yup, it is a N-W chainring already

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by moefosho View Post
    Wow. That is a lot of man hours. Couldnt you just work those hours and then afford lighter stuff to begin with?
    Where's the fun in that?

    Well it is fun, too, but we all have different tastes. Some of us would rather work on bike parts than the day job buying bike parts.

    I'm nowhere near this extreme, but I get it.

  18. #18
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    Amazing work! Well impressed. What tools do you use for all the grinding etc?

  19. #19
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    As a Clydesdale who breaks stuff I'm jealous

    Great job on the documentation, and the work on the bike. Looks like a true passion of yours

  20. #20
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    fxrextreme:
    Here's the tools that made this project possible



    I use primarily 12000rpm Luxor rotary tool with a set of 10pcs 3mm tungsten coated deburring shanks. Easily available at eBay

    phalkon30:
    I am a harcore hobbyist who used to build and mod my own drag cars, bike etc. So this sort of work was definitely a passion to me.

    But it must be clarified that this sort of hardcore weight reduction takes into consideration with me being only 57kg. I believe this setup will not work for anyone above 65kg

  21. #21
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    Thanks

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    I am not saying I did it myself in the past (ehm...) but you still have some tuning potential in the cranks - the steel spindle is certainly overbuilt and you can save up to 50g by slighly reducing the 24mm outer diameter. As they say, misery loves company :-)
    flyMTBfish

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ausable View Post
    I am not saying I did it myself in the past (ehm...) but you still have some tuning potential in the cranks - the steel spindle is certainly overbuilt and you can save up to 50g by slighly reducing the 24mm outer diameter. As they say, misery loves company :-)
    Hahaha I love your optimism on this.....NOW I am seriously tempted to shave that fat steel axle haha. I agreed they are built like a tank probably meant to support up to 150-180kg riders...

  24. #24
    Is dang happy!
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    Not sure why did not go for a $200 1300 gram chiner frame? I know durability is a valid concern, my chiner bars crumbled like tissue paper.
    The wheel is a extension of the foot

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    Very intriguing build and I'm glad to see that you re-painted the surfaces, it makes for a good all-around bike. IMO I'd like to see some red up high too, like on the seatpost clamp, or saddle clamp. Regardless, nice build!

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Doom View Post
    Not sure why did not go for a $200 1300 gram chiner frame? I know durability is a valid concern, my chiner bars crumbled like tissue paper.
    Chinese frame? there's no Chinese frame used in this build, obviously it is a vintage Aluminum BMC frame used there. Perhaps you are replying to a different thread LOL

    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyCharm4x4 View Post
    Very intriguing build and I'm glad to see that you re-painted the surfaces, it makes for a good all-around bike. IMO I'd like to see some red up high too, like on the seatpost clamp, or saddle clamp. Regardless, nice build!
    yes, yes I love red haha...because like the Orks said "da redz one go fastaa!.." LOL.
    I want to see a bit more red too. Still in the works. And Thanks!

  27. #27
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    How are you getting all of this Ti hardware? I don't see it on your sheet, and assume that the $$ would add up quite quickly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyCharm4x4 View Post
    How are you getting all of this Ti hardware? I don't see it on your sheet, and assume that the $$ would add up quite quickly.
    Precisely here's the Ti Bolt lists:
    2x Ti M6-35MM Bolts (Seatpost Bolts)
    10x Ti M6-16MM (Brake Bolts)
    6x Ti M5-16MM (Stem Bolts)
    4x Ti M6-19MM (Crank & Brake Mount)

    Of which all cost USD$36.00 - the cost already spread across the components that receive them- yes I factored in the Ti bolts cost into the items.

    * Ti bolts are relatively cheap here in my country

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erwandy View Post
    Chinese frame? there's no Chinese frame used in this build, obviously it is a vintage Aluminum BMC frame used there. Perhaps you are replying to a different thread LOL
    He was suggesting that IF you had bought a $200 1300g Chinese frame, your build would have ended up lighter and would have been significantly less work. But as you mentioned, you love your BMC frame and enjoy the work!

  30. #30
    Hardtail Steel Forever
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    I'm simultaneously amazed and horrified by this build...
    WTB: Med Bontrager Ti Lite, PM Me...

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlownCivic View Post
    He was suggesting that IF you had bought a $200 1300g Chinese frame, your build would have ended up lighter and would have been significantly less work. But as you mentioned, you love your BMC frame and enjoy the work!
    Aahhh I see haha. Thanks


    Quote Originally Posted by jestep View Post
    I'm simultaneously amazed and horrified by this build...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Erwandy View Post
    Aahhh I see haha. Thanks




    I loved this thread too - serious dedication. Any of these super WW builds make me wish my bike was lighter, but I can't get over simple things like running tires that aren't as tough and grippy as Maxxis DHF/DHRII..

    Anyway, the only thing that jumped out at me and that I want to see long term durability report on is the massive cassette cog all drilled out. The stretched out derailleur makes it look all that more precarious. I can just see slamming into some step up move, putting down as much force as possible, getting a bit sideways ... but ... maybe not. I guess front chainrings were always a bit more susceptible to those types of forces. Anyway, report back in 6 months or a year. Keep us posted on how it goes. And nice work. I wish I had the time, money and aptitude for what you've done.

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    Agreed on the cassette, I snapped a ring out of my brand new eagle 12 speed from a bad shift. Can't imagine removing metal there

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    Quote Originally Posted by slcpunk View Post
    I loved this thread too - serious dedication. Any of these super WW builds make me wish my bike was lighter, but I can't get over simple things like running tires that aren't as tough and grippy as Maxxis DHF/DHRII..

    Anyway, the only thing that jumped out at me and that I want to see long term durability report on is the massive cassette cog all drilled out. The stretched out derailleur makes it look all that more precarious. I can just see slamming into some step up move, putting down as much force as possible, getting a bit sideways ... but ... maybe not. I guess front chainrings were always a bit more susceptible to those types of forces. Anyway, report back in 6 months or a year. Keep us posted on how it goes. And nice work. I wish I had the time, money and aptitude for what you've done.
    Tires has always been my biggest priority when doing XC races. For this purpose I will never compromise and settle for anything less than a combo of either Maxxis IKON, Schwalbe Rocket Ron or Racing Ralph - these are XC raced proven tires - and they provide big mass without too much of weight penalties. For 26er I will never run anything less than a 2.20.

    As for the cassette, yes I have concerns too that they would flex sideways under pressure. But factoring in that I am a very lightweight rider I took the risk. The cassette in stock form was clearly designed to withstand abuse even by riders up to 150-170kg range - hence the tank like build. But my logic was that, the rotational force will be more applicable to smaller cogs from 11 to 21t - of which were made of very tough hardened steel. So if the bigger cogs that I modded extensively (28, 32, 36, 42 & 50t) flex, it is a risk that I am willing to endure.

    As for the RD. Yes many will cringe at the look when it is stretched flat on the bigger cogs - it made me winced too LOL!. But Shimano top end RDs are made of to last and can sustain quite an abuse compared to SRAM (yes I have used both extensively). The Ultegra RD-6800 that I am using now actually sits comfortable even at full stretch - probably because being short they tend to be sturdier - and also the chain length and tension need to be spot on. I spent no less than 6 attempts at setting the chainline placement and length and finally settled when a sweet spot/balance was achieved. Where the chain tension even at the biggest cog offer some 1cm of play and at smallest cog the chain does not sway too much - painstaking yes.

    My first competitive event will be on the 28 of January 2018, and from then onward I plan to attend at least 1 race every month. The next 1 month I will be on training mode. I will report back on the results of these greatly modified components - because honestly I have never done anything as insane on my bikes previously.

    Thanks
    Last edited by Erwandy; 3 Weeks Ago at 12:38 PM.
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    Final Stage: Race Wheels

    This has been delayed due to commitments at the turn of new year. But it is all done now. Cost me USD$95 and thus kept the overall budget well within $1K allowance. The rims are Stan's ZTR Podium MMX with a cheap Taiwanese Fastace hubs and DT Swiss Revolution spokes. Kept the price low for the whole thing by buying used at super bargain price.

    The hubs were bought new: ....and modded extensively to reduce weight.

    No surprise there. 508g is a very common weight for commoner bikes


    Yes I know you will wince and cringe. I have been running 4 bolts setup since 2015. This time pushing it to 3 bolts


    And so the finished product weight is nothing to shout about at 422g. But for a $50 hubs I can live with it for now


    Laced and assembled. 1310g is not too shabby for a $95 wheelset yes?

    I just love the fatty and rounder look of those tires on the Podium 21.4mm wide rims. Looked a lot fuller.




    ..the kittens admiring the bike as well hahaha

    So what's the final weight?


    * went to the local bike shop and asked them to weigh my bike using Parktool bike scale.
    8.58KG feels very satisfying, considering this bike only cost $1K (slightly more at $1080ish).

    That's all for now. The next stage is to grind this baby on XC courses. Hope all goes well. Thanks!
    Last edited by Erwandy; 1 Week Ago at 08:46 AM.
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

  36. #36
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    Thanks for sharing!

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    Quote Originally Posted by phlegm View Post
    Thanks for sharing!
    My pleasure.
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

  38. #38
    Rod
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    For us living in the states, that's 18.9 pounds including pedals. Incredible
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    For us living in the states, that's 18.9 pounds including pedals. Incredible
    lol thanks. I was too lazy to convert the figures to lbs
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    Well done! Did you mod the disc rotors to make them 3 bolt?
    Kes

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    Quote Originally Posted by fxrextreme View Post
    Well done! Did you mod the disc rotors to make them 3 bolt?
    Kes
    Thanks. No I decided that the rotors already have very little meat on them that removing any metal would make them flex too much. But I will get another type of rotor which have bolt circle ring that will allow me to trim off three spider arms - that will be done sometime later
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    For us living in the states, that's 18.9 pounds including pedals. Incredible
    In fairness, it's a 26" bike. Love the project though.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by phlegm View Post
    In fairness, it's a 26" bike. Love the project though.
    My 26 inch bike didn't weigh that, especially with that budget. His weight reduction methods and time investment deserve kudos.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk
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    +1^^^

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    My 26 inch bike didn't weigh that, especially with that budget. His weight reduction methods and time investment deserve kudos.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk
    Indeed, I've already given my appreciation about this thread. I've enjoyed reading about this project.

    My reference to the 26" frame size is for the sake of reference, and not a slam of any kind.

    Getting a 26er down to 18.9 lbs is easier than doing so on a 29er for example - I suppose that was the point.

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    Update:

    DISASTER! took her out today to my favorite forest park for the first real shakedowns. Up until now I have been running leisure pace. But today I decided to shift it up to racing speed and intensity. Unfortunately things started to break.

    - First the 50t cog was literally sheared out of the spider while grinding a very steep climb. The failed points were the aluminum rivets that was unable to hold up under heavy load

    - Second, rear derailleur hanger took extreme damage due to chain drag. Apparently the highly modified middle cogs flexed a lot under heavy pedaling - of which the flexing motion caused the chain to rub with the neighboring cog and in turn seized the chain at extreme angle - the end product being the RD and RD cage dragged backwards



    Makeshift repair done to limp my way out of the trail...

    But eventually the RD hanger snapped off clean after that due to strain.

    Lesson learnt the hard way. Excessive modification of cassette is NOT a good idea. And don't ever use aluminum rivets for high strain area. Licking my wounds now. Need to find a replacement cassette & RD hanger. The Ultegra RD turned out to be still okay, just the cage bent and require replacement of jockey wheels, this further boosted my confidence in Shimano's durability.

    I'd probably stick with 42t as it seems that with 8.5kg, the bike felt really good even on very steep climbs. Weight really does have influence on climbing prowess.
    Last edited by Erwandy; 1 Week Ago at 06:56 AM.
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    lol

    and what happens when your 3 bolt front hub brake interface disintegrates on a descent and that tree is right at the edge of the next corner!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Schulze View Post
    lol

    and what happens when your 3 bolt front hub brake interface disintegrates on a descent and that tree is right at the edge of the next corner!
    hahaha I hope not to go through that. But aside from the cassette disaster, the brakes held up well on steep descent. But I must admit on the extremes the rotors started to squeal like a pig due to flexing - premonitions? LOL
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    Its funny, I read this thread this morning and thought your bike was awesome. I really admired your dedication and your craftsmanship, you did a great job with all the modifications and even the paint looks great. But I wondered how long it would take for the bike to implode. So I come back several hours later and it looks like it already has. I do give you credit for riding it hard though. I often see ridiculous weight weenie bikes in this forum that are never actually ridden or not ridden hard.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ljsmith View Post
    its funny, i read this thread this morning and thought your bike was awesome. I really admired your dedication and your craftsmanship, you did a great job with all the modifications and even the paint looks great. But i wondered how long it would take for the bike to implode. So i come back several hours later and it looks like it already has. I do give you credit for riding it hard though. I often see ridiculous weight weenie bikes in this forum that are never actually ridden or not ridden hard.
    lol

    When I first started this project and sharing it online, I knew that I have opened up a Pandora box. What I have done was basically realizing the "what ifs".

    There's nothing in what I have done so far would constitute as being sensible - because if I were to stick to that line this project would have faltered even at conception stage.

    My wife actually spend a good 30 minutes lecturing me on the folly of my actions when she picked me up from the bike park with a broken bike. She has always been the most sensible person that I have ever known. But we had a good laugh after that, because she knew me the best. Even at age 43 and with my eldest daughter turned 19 this year, I am still a kid with a loaded toolbox.

    When the parts broke, I told myself that I need to report this back on the forum - despite knowing for a fact that people will laugh at me. But not sharing failure story is morally incorrect. At the very least I gave reasons for people to laugh, that's a good thing. And I laugh too at the folly of my action.

    It has been said many times that we learn better when we fail. I have learned my lessons, being stubborn as a mule that I am, this will not be my last project, this is my own way of doing "R&D". And I take this experience to ensure that I am fully aware of what NOT to do when I start that other project (probably a $4000 29er build).

    PS:
    I would never do this to anybody else bikes. I took my chances and so I should shoulder the risks, not anyone else
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    Quote Originally Posted by Erwandy View Post
    I am still a kid with a loaded toolbox.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erwandy View Post
    Update:

    DISASTER! took her out today to my favorite forest park for the first real shakedowns. Up until now I have been running leisure pace. But today I decided to shift it up to racing speed and intensity. Unfortunately things started to break.

    - First the 50t cog was literally sheared out of the spider while grinding a very steep climb. The failed points were the aluminum rivets that was unable to hold up under heavy load

    - Second, rear derailleur hanger took extreme damage due to chain drag. Apparently the highly modified middle cogs flexed a lot under heavy pedaling - of which the flexing motion caused the chain to rub with the neighboring cog and in turn seized the chain at extreme angle - the end product being the RD and RD cage dragged backwards



    Makeshift repair done to limp my way out of the trail...

    But eventually the RD hanger snapped off clean after that due to strain.

    Lesson learnt the hard way. Excessive modification of cassette is NOT a good idea. And don't ever use aluminum rivets for high strain area. Licking my wounds now. Need to find a replacement cassette & RD hanger. The Ultegra RD turned out to be still okay, just the cage bent and require replacement of jockey wheels, this further boosted my confidence in Shimano's durability.

    I'd probably stick with 42t as it seems that with 8.5kg, the bike felt really good even on very steep climbs. Weight really does have influence on climbing prowess.
    Good on you to be honest about the issues and post them up. This is refreshing to see. Great job on the build!

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    Your experimentation is very much appreciated, just don't get hurt please.

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    Quote Originally Posted by the_joe View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by trmn8er View Post
    Good on you to be honest about the issues and post them up. This is refreshing to see. Great job on the build!
    Quote Originally Posted by jrhilado View Post
    Your experimentation is very much appreciated, just don't get hurt please.
    hahaha thanks all. Damage assessment completed. It was indeed the cassette blowing up royally. But the most hurtful damage was to the RD hanger and RD cage.

    And yes I will be extra careful when doing the shakedowns.
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    Thanks for your honesty and reporting back. Great build and appreciate all your hard work.
    You are riding the bike hard which is great but throw that stem in the dumpster and get one of the lighter UNO stem with Ti bolts before you are seriously injuried or worse.

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    Awesome thread! In to see how long it holds up! Bike looks great too

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    Hey Erwandy - don't give up! you have to survive to fight another day ;-)

    Just re-assess the weigth savings based on potential risk of failures.
    examples: cassette and hanger cannot do much damage if not a long walk home, but front rotor, stem and fork are much more critical from a safety point of view.
    +1 for the proposal of replacing the stem with a $20 Kalloy Uno, etc.
    I think that witn an extra 2-300 g you will be able to ride your bike hard without unplanned visits to the nearest hospital!
    take care
    flyMTBfish

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    xc71, machine4321 & Ausable. Yet again thanks.

    And yes those are sound advise that makes perfect sense. Misery loves company, but hey there's limit even to insanity yes? hahaha
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    Stuff breaking is all part of R&D.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Stuff breaking is all part of R&D.
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    It will be two weeks before the replacement parts are available to install.

    Until then, I still need to ride to keep fitness level high and I have converted my bike into a single speeder haha


    It's a simple trick to use wheel spoke as a chain tensioner and placing a single cog in the middle section sandwiched with spacers. Turned out to work quite well. This idea I got from random google pics sometime ago



    PS: I am doing this not because it's a weight weenie thing. It's simply to allow me to ride my bike while waiting for replacement RD Hanger and RD....and cassette too
    ..if it's heavy, drill it

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    I have a ZTTO 11 speed 11-50 still in the box. I bought it because it was cheap enough to try it and 350gr. But still think I'll just get the Garbaruk 11-50. If interested let me know.

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