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  1. #1
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    Budget Trek Fuel diet, this **** is addictive.....

    Budget Trek Fuel diet, this shit is addictive.....-20130910_130849.jpg

    Hi, my name is Dennis, and I'm an addict. I just started, so it should be easy to kick, but I'm not sure I want to...

    From 30+ lbs stock, to 26.8lbs (currently).

    I found a well used but slightly upgraded '01 Fuel for $200, couldn't pass it up. Already had XT front and rear derailleurs, cassete and cranks, plus the CK headset.

    I'm just getting back into riding after a 10 year "family vacation", so I'm on a tight budget (which adds to the fun, for me). I have a great used bike/parts store near me, it's a gold-mine of good stuff mixed in with the crap.

    Originally had V brakes, so I sold the wheels and put on my Mavic Crossmax and Fox float RL, got a set of cheap Hayes Stroker Ryde brakes, to get it trail worthy. They SUCK, so that's my first real purchase, better brakes. Cleaned, greased, adjusted and rideable she weighed 29lbs.

    The XT cranks were 165mm, so I traded them for a set of m952 XTR, 175mm with bad rings. The chain-suck was so bad I was effectively riding a 1x9, and the m952 rings are an odd BCD so impossible to find. I found a 5 bolt spider and a 32T ring and made it official. Swapped the seatpost from the bontrager club to an Easton EA50, 26.8 lbs :0.......aaaaand I'm hooked. All I can think about is the 24.9lb mark and "what's next" to make it lighter AND better?


    My plans so far:
    • XT/XTR brakes, the XT actually have better reviews.
    • stem/handlebar
    • spiderless chainring (if/when I can find one)
    • pedals (m757 currently, still work great, but heavy-ish)
    • shifter pod (getting sloppy, needs replaced soon)
    • shifter cable & housing (may as well, with the shifter)
    • shadow rear der.
    • UST tires
    • alloy bolt set? (not sure if that's worth it...)


    Not sure of the order, probably as I find deals. I want new brakes now, but they're not a necessity. Typically I upgrade when something isn't working right, or I feel it's holding me back. The brakes suck, but I don't think they're holding me back at this point.

  2. #2
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    UST tires are v. heavy. If you want to go tubeless, use tubeless-ready tires and Stan's sealant...much lighter set-up.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2012 Specialized Stumpy EVO 29 HT

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by TiGeo View Post
    UST tires are v. heavy. If you want to go tubeless, use tubeless-ready tires and Stan's sealant...much lighter set-up.
    I've read that, but it may be a sacrifice I'm willing to make to avoid the mess of sealant. How big of a PITA is the sealant when changing tires? Seems to be varying opinions on how worthwhile each is, I'm on the fence, leaning UST for simplicity, my rims are UST.


    Edit: Holy crap.....

    Just looked up Kenda Nevgals, UST 26x2.1 is 821g, std is 610...almost 1/2 lb on ONE tire. (and 2/3 the price....)

    Couple oz of sealant per tire, I guess I'll deal with the mess if/when I replace tires.
    Last edited by shupack; 09-11-2013 at 10:11 AM. Reason: holy crap!

  4. #4
    I Tried Them ALL... Moderator
    Reputation: Zachariah's Avatar
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    Look at YouTube videos on how tubeless is properly done....the fuss factor vs. weight reduction is well worth it. Don't bother with the aluminum/titanium bolts - I've snapped too many already, to realize steel is real.

    I suggest finding a Shimano XTR FC-M960 crankset(790g/stock) and turn it into a 2x9 setup with bashguard. Match it with a 230g XTR CS-M960 11-34 cassette and SRAM PC-990 chain and easily drop another 140g.
    "The mind will quit....well before the body does"

  5. #5
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    Ok, I'm sold... sealant it is. What's next?

  6. #6
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    I have changed/installed LOTS of tubeless tires. Some tubeless ready set ups, some ghetto. I don't think its particularly complicated or messy....but...my background is as a shop mechanic. I think its worth it - flats reduced to nearly zero, lower pressure w/no pinch flats, lighter than tubes (typically). It just takes some practice to get good/fast at it and not make a mess. Install tire with the last portion of the bead left open. Add 2 cups Stan's. Roll the tire to get the sealant on the opposite side. Close the last bit of bead..sometimes need a tire lever as these set-ups can be tight. Inflate. Sometimes you can do it with a floor pump, sometimes you can't. Compressors make this MUCH easier. I use CO2 sometimes b/c it works so well and is fast. I put 2 on 2 nights ago and it took a total of 10 minutes.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2012 Specialized Stumpy EVO 29 HT

  7. #7
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    Damn, did my front tire last night. I forgot I had a Slime tube in there....9oz. NINE....

    I had a few extra tubes from a friend that went tubeless a while ago, used one for the removable core valve, it weighed 7oz, I assume the rear tube will weigh the same.

    Considering using the slime from that tube to do the rear, it should work, if so:

    Update: No, the slime from the tube did NOT work. May have been too old, or designed for just holes, not sealing a sidewall

    Total cost for tubeless conversion, $6.46. Weight saved 16oz minus 4oz sealant=12oz.

    That's 52 cents/oz, not a bad ROI Wish I'd looked into it sooner. Thanks for the encouragement TiGeo....
    Last edited by shupack; 09-12-2013 at 07:02 PM. Reason: slime

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zachariah View Post
    Look at YouTube videos on how tubeless is properly done....the fuss factor vs. weight reduction is well worth it.
    SOLD! did both tires, went from 26.8lbs to 25.8! (using my bathroom scale, so accuracy is suspect, I weigh myself then me + bike 3x to minimize error)

    Don't bother with the aluminum/titanium bolts - I've snapped too many already, to realize steel is real.

    I was thinking lightweight bolts for non weight-bearing fasteners, like the stem top-cap, shifter/brake lever clamps etc, but that'll be a last step.

    I suggest finding a Shimano XTR FC-M960 crankset(790g/stock) and turn it into a 2x9 setup with bashguard. Match it with a 230g XTR CS-M960 11-34 cassette and SRAM PC-990 chain and easily drop another 140g.
    I'm happy with my cranks, and really like the 1x9 setup for now, will see in 500 miles. When I'm due for a new cassette I'll go XTR.

  9. #9
    Big Gulps, Alright!
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    Quote Originally Posted by shupack View Post
    SOLD! did both tires, went from 26.8lbs to 25.8! (using my bathroom scale, so accuracy is suspect, I weigh myself then me + bike 3x to minimize error)
    Gram counting is kind of pointless when this is how you weigh your bike...

  10. #10
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    since I'm shaving a 1/2lb to a full pound at a shot, I'm not really gram counting. When I get under 23, I'll get a proper bike scale, I have a postage scale I use for parts when it's not weighing packages.

    Thanks for the encouragement.

  11. #11
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    Jeez my bathroom scale would go from 32lbs(booo) to 28lb(WHOOHO) to 31lbs.... then I just stopped caring.

    How does it feel with all that weight shed?

  12. #12
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    balance is the key. my scale is digital, so it locks in when it's decided, but if I don't stand still it will bounce around forever.

    Havn't been in the woods yet this week, but around the yard it feels quicker with the tubeless, but it could be just my expectations, my butt isn't calibrated... The switch to 1x9 made a noticeable difference in climbing speed, because of the weight AND not being able to drop into granny to spin up long climbs, gotta grind it out. Getting to the top quicker is easier.... right??.... right??

    More important was dropping 25lbs of me, about 5 more to go.

  13. #13
    Big Gulps, Alright!
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    Quote Originally Posted by shupack View Post
    When I get under 23, I'll get a proper bike scale
    ...you might be there already...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Berkley View Post
    ...you might be there already...
    Possibly, next time I'm at a shop I'll weigh it...

    Rode this morning, first impression: HOT DAMN! MUCH faster uphill, I used to think I was slow and huffing/puffing because I was out of shape, turns out it was because I was over-using the granny gear (turning the cranks over twice as many times as needed and working hard to stay upright going so slow) and spinning heavier-than-needed wheels. I only pushed one section, which I couldn't do previously in the granny ring anyway, all the other climbs from my usual route were easier technically (from going faster I assume). Between hammering a higher gear and lower rotating mass from the tubeless I did my 7mi loop 10 minutes faster and wanted to go around again, time didn't permit though. Wish I'd gone ghetto tubeless long ago. I had to consciously slow myself down at the beginning to not burn out, the bike was screaming at me to go faster. Will wait till my fitness catches back up to the bike before I do any more upgrades, except maybe brakes.

    The front wheel turns (side to side) much quicker, not sure if this is from the reduced weight of the front wheel, or because I have more energy from spinning lighter wheels, either way, it was noticeable. Got me into trouble in a few spots till I got used to it.

    The bike flicks side/side faster, probably from the lighter seatpost. All the weight of the old bontrager was in the clamp, that's a lot of leverage when pivoting the bike at the wheels, swinging the seat a foot or so side-side while standing to hammer.

    I don't' have a chain-guide (yet) and I only dropped the chain once, on a long downhill section, when the faster steering got me into trouble, I slipped my front foot off and back-pedaled quickly, I think that's when the chain dropped.

  15. #15
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    My $3.00 chain keeper:

    Was dropping the chain on rough sections, so I picked up a reflector clamp from the LBS (free since they pull them off and toss them...) and a $3 cutting board at the grocery store. Several cardboard templates later and I have this:

    Budget Trek Fuel diet, this shit is addictive.....-20131008_091751.jpg

    I'm traveling, so I don't have my scale with me, rough guess 20g. Some mods could get it down to 15, but with a 25(ish) lb bike, I'm not worried about 5g (yet).

    I used the corner of the cutting board so it would look slightly nice and round. Cut with a fine wood-saw and cleaned up with a razor knife. If I can find a back cutting board, I'll re-make it. Maybe hot pink....

    Budget Trek Fuel diet, this shit is addictive.....-20131008_002540.jpg

    I've been scouring the end of season sales, picked up a wider handlebar, shorter 0 rise stem, foam grips and FINALLY found a spiderless chainring for my m952 cranks, used on eBay.

    Edit: Damnit, that picture won't stay vertical...

  16. #16
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    Current weight, 25.4lbs

  17. #17
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    I have a similar bike. Here are some good ideas from the guys in this thread.


    http://forums.mtbr.com/weight-weenie...nd-832991.html

  18. #18
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    thanks for the link, I've been considering a new frame (mine's an '01.. but new rear-end.) since I'm on a budget, the frame will wait till I get a great deal on one.

    Current Build:

    Budget Trek Fuel diet, this shit is addictive.....-screen-shot-2013-11-02-6.08.42-pm.png

    Next things that NEED to be replaced are rear derailleur/shifter, cassette and chain (KMC chain already ordered) I want an XTR rear der, but also want a short cage. I heard a rumor that a Zee short cage will fit an XTR, I may try that out, may just go with a medium cage. Keeping an eye out for a great deal on cassette and der.

    I went with the Serfas silicon grips, since they were $3, ODI would be 1/2 the weight. And the kore composite pedals for winter riding were on sale for $13, probably beacause they were put together wrong. I had to rebuild them before installing. One had too many bearing balls, one had not enough, both were way over-tightened.

    I wanted to try a wider bar/shorter stem combo, so I picked those up on sale too, I know I could go lighter.

    Any recommendations for best bang for the buck? I'm thinking seat/post.

    I'm pretty happy with the current weight, it could be lighter but I haven't spent much money. I took a new fuel for a spin, felt about the same in the parking lot, and weighs 32lbs.... not worth $3200 to add 7lbs. If I could get just the frame......

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