BenFenner's 2018 Diamondback Lux 2- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Oh; "biker"I'm an idiot.
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    BenFenner's 2018 Diamondback Lux 2

    Tl;DR - My wife got her first MTB and we're going to give this whole MTB thing a try.

    Album

    I grew up on bikes, but have only really been mountain biking once as a teen, and loved it. As a grown adult now I'm going to dust off my 1997 Trek 820 and hit the trails. I've managed to convince my wife to give it a try with me, even though she's barely comfortable on a bike as it is.

    I'm hoping with some real practice she will get comfortable, and we can enjoy the outdoors and exercise together.

    With that in mind, after a good bit of research and familiarizing myself with modern stuff, we picked out a bike for her that should fit and be decent to begin on without breaking the bank.

    We ended up with a 2018 Diamondback Lux 2 (spec sheet below) and have been pleased with it. We waited for a sale and picked it up for ~$500 shipped.

    We have since brought the handlebars closer with a new stem, and dealt with some wrist pain with some Ergon grips. We also did a better job of lubricating the chain. I'll post those updates as I get to them.

    You'll notice the chain actually broke within the first minute of test riding it. I believe I was being too aggressive on the pedals during a shift. It was an easy fix, and it's been trouble-free ever since.
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  2. #2
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    Install new 30mm stem | Album

    Almost immediately after purchasing the bike, we realized my wife would benefit from moving the cockpit closer. From what I can recall, the bike came with a ~60mm stem and we just went as short as possible. I stretched the budget for this one, and gave it as a gift. Otherwise we'd have settled for one of the cheaper 35mm options out there.

    This helped get some weight off of her wrists, and after a bit of time she believes it's a decent improvement over-all.

    Parts:
    $75.24 | Syntace Megaforce 2 30mm stem
    $8.29 | ODIER 6-piece headset spacers (2mm, 3mm, 5mm, 310mm)
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  3. #3
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    Install new Ergon grips | Album

    My wife is still dealing with a bit of wrist pain and numbness while riding even after bringing the cockpit closer. Mostly because she doesn't really ever move positions, rarely stands up, and generally is very tense on a ride. She will work on that, but she also really liked the idea of trying some winged grips. I know in theory these shouldn't be required, but she wanted to give them a try.

    She's used them for a while now and feels they are another good improvement, so we'll stick with them.



    Parts:
    $23.50 | Ergon grips (black) | GA3
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  4. #4
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    Hey man, congrats on getting into the sport. I know there is a lot of stuff to keep in mind while learning. I just wanted to chime in about your wife's wrist pain. I think it may have to do with the angle of the handle bars. The first pic of this thread shows them basically pointing up. Compare that pic with the second- the stock screen shot-pic of the post and notice that the bars are level and pointing back. If you rotate the bars counter-clock wise a few degrees to be more level, you can alleviate a lot of hand/wrist discomfort.

    Of course, this requires a bit of trial and error, but once dialed in, she'll be good to go.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the input mate. That could be it.

    When setting the bars, I had her keep her arms straight and pull toward her chest while sitting in the saddle. The idea was to allow her to lean back and have as much weight off of her wrists as possible. That is why they angle upward, and that could easily have been a big mistake.

    We will adjust the bars lower and see how things go. Great tip!

  6. #6
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    One more thing my wife did to try to help with the discomfort was to buy padded gloves. She reports those have helped as well.
    So with the shorter stem, winged grips, and padded gloves she is pretty comfortable on the bike now. I'm sure being more confident in the saddle helps too.

    We will rotate the handlebars (and readjust the grips) and report back. It might be a few months or even longer before we have solid feedback though.

  7. #7
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    Fair enough. Hope it works out. FWIW, mountain biking is often counter-intuitive. Taking weight off the front wheel seems like a tweak that will increase confidence because it seems to negate flying over the handle bars; however, doing so actually makes the bike more unstable. The bike relies on that weight to track and hold lines, effectively brake, activate the suspension, etc. Anyways, have fun and log that saddle time-confidence will follow.

  8. #8
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    Weigh bike | Album

    Since my wife got this bike, I've been dreaming of replacing my crusty old 1997 Trek 820 with something similar, but with a 111 setup and trigger shifting.

    It took 9 months to amass and afford all of the parts, but I finished building a 2017 Surly Troll to my exact needs. With that finished, I wanted to know how much the new Troll weighed, and I wanted to compare it to the other bikes. That meant I'd be weighing my wife's bike as well, and it seems to be 30.6 pounds.

    For reference, my old rigid Trek is also 30.6 pounds, and my new rigid Troll ended up a relatively svelte 26.8 pounds.
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  9. #9
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    Install new Chester pedals | Album

    My wife began complaining about her feet slipping off of the garbage pedals that came with her bike. I am locked into my Chesters, so I figured we'd get her a set for her bike.

    I'm able to avoid shin strikes and other contact, but she's been finding that a little tough. I'm not sure she's 100% sold on the new pedals yet, but we'll keep at it for a while longer.


    Parts:
    $40.92 | Race Face Chester composite pedals (blue) | PD16CHEBLU | Amazon
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  10. #10
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    Fix chain with new master link | Album

    If you recall the first post, the chain broke the night we got the bike. My wife has actually been riding the bike with a broken chain for a year now. I would just snap the link back onto the pin and we'd keep on trucking. This happened 2 or 3 times throughout the past year, and finally got to the point where it was annoying enough to address.

    The chain tool I got to assemble my Troll made quick work of the offending link, and we replaced it with a new one. All better!


    Parts:
    $13.50 | (Set of 6) KMC MissingLink 9R 9-speed master links | CL566R | Amazon
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  11. #11
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    Clean and re-lubricate chain | Album

    My wife's chain started throwing itself and causing all sorts of issues due to stuck links. Apparently the factory lubricant just isn't designed to last very long on this one.

    I put off cleaning the chain as long as I could because even after doing some good research, I still wasn't sure which lubrication method I wanted to use.
    Eventually I sat down and really figured it out (as well as picking up some pliers to make the job easier). There are the highly-involved melted wax techniques which are obviously great, but more work than I want to deal with right now. I found amazingly good sources of quality and longevity of lubricants, and just moved down the list a few notches until I found the best option that didn't involve a whole lot of work.

    I think just about everyone else lands on this solution, so I feel like I did a good job there.

    I cleaned the chain completely with automotive brake cleaner, brushing and agitating the chain many times, along with soaking it in a bag multiple times. I freed up every link individually, and was very meticulous about it. There were maybe upwards of a dozen links that were just completely gunked up and crunchy as hell. I'm quite surprised it got this bad.

    I re-lubed the chain according to the directions on the bottle and it is buttery smooth now. All of the problems are gone, and I'm confident it will be riding great for a long time now.


    Supplies:
    $13.89 | Squirt Dry Lubricant (4-ounce) | SQ-DL-120 | Amazon


    Tools:
    $8.10 | HEYANG bike chain pliers | no part number | Amazon
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  12. #12
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    Huge Diamondback fan but I guess you know that already! lol

  13. #13
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    Forks like that (with no real damping) can be a significant barrier to moving forward and riding trails. Its hard to be in control of a bike when its bouncing all over wildly.

    If shes actually moving towards riding the bike on dirt trails, a fork will be a massive confidence booster!

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