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Thread: Race that VT

  1. #1

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    Race that VT

    Hey all...
    Have had a couple of races on my Giant VT3 over the past couple of weeks and am very impressed with its "raceability".
    My VT is no lightweight by any means, but with a few lighter components in the right places i feel the VT range of bikes could be made very competitive.......one thing i found very noticeable was how the VT made massive gains on other riders in the downhill sections of the races (shame there werent more these )....full credit to its 5"+ of travel for this.
    The VT also could hold its own on most climbs...the Swinger rear shock keeping hooked up sensationally on the technical stuff.
    My VT was raced basically stock except for the following changes-
    Shimano 545 pedals (from an older bike)......way too heavy for racing and have been swapped with 540`s for a saving of over half a pound.
    Selle Flite Ti saddle.
    Panaracer Fire XC 2.1`s

    For those curious as to how it placed...
    First race was placed 5th out of 16 riders.
    Second race......7th outright out of 19 riders.
    Heres some pics....first one is in garage before heading out for race......second is reaching an uphill section at the halfway point on a lap.......third is a sprint to the finish line against a guy on a hardtail (not sure which brand of bike) but the Swinger held its own here, lost the sprint by a wheel-length.
    Cheers Andy
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
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    VT fast

    Yeah it's a decent racer. Last year was my first year XC-racing and I used my VT1. Made a few quick mods to get it down to around 30 lbs. Did well enough to graduate to Expert class this year. The only problem is my race-ready VT setup is not the same as my trail-bike VT setup, so every time I was getting ready to race or train I had to change a whole bunch of stuff on the bike, which started to be a pain.
    So this year I'm probably getting a dedicated race bike. Maybe the NRS, although it sure felt harsh compared to the VT

  3. #3

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    Yep the plushness of the VT is certainly nice compared to some of the XC race bikes around.
    I`ll be trying to reach a compromise between a race setup and still having it be comfortable and durable enough for trail epic rides.
    Some of the changes I`m looking at will include-
    * Maxm Isogrid handlebar
    * Thomson Elite seatpost (to get rid of the shim)
    * Lighter tires...possibly the Panaracer Trailblaster 2.1`s, and some extra light tubes, wheelset is currently Mavic X117 which is fairly light anyway.
    * Pauls Love levers....for the Avid mechanical discs.
    * Hollowtech Crank and bottom bracket.
    * XT front and rear mech`s
    Hopefully these should enhance its racing and still be trailworthy as well.
    Cheers Andy

  4. #4
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    ... and if we just ...

    Hey,
    Ummm that first race wouldn't happen to be at yellowmundie in D class would it?? If so, I was there! I'm the kid on the XTC2, don't know if you remember me?
    Sweet ride BTW

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    Yep the plushness of the VT is certainly nice compared to some of the XC race bikes around.
    I`ll be trying to reach a compromise between a race setup and still having it be comfortable and durable enough for trail epic rides.
    Some of the changes I`m looking at will include-
    * Maxm Isogrid handlebar
    * Thomson Elite seatpost (to get rid of the shim)
    * Lighter tires...possibly the Panaracer Trailblaster 2.1`s, and some extra light tubes, wheelset is currently Mavic X117 which is fairly light anyway.
    * Pauls Love levers....for the Avid mechanical discs.
    * Hollowtech Crank and bottom bracket.
    * XT front and rear mech`s
    Hopefully these should enhance its racing and still be trailworthy as well.
    Cheers Andy
    BTW the wheels that you have I also have the same sorta of wheels, you would be surprised at their weight. I had got a set of VXC rims on WTB lazerlite hubs but the hubs had a warranty problem so I had to get a refund, but they were soo sweet and clse to a pound if not more of weight savings. The rims aren't that heavy but the hubs sure are!! I know want some king wheels laced to 317 rims, but I gotta make my mind up if I will get a road bike or wheels. BTW if your interested in king wheels, heres a quy with real good prices and service. www.mnthighcyclery.com

  6. #6

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    Hey Bike Freak,
    Yep certainly was at Yellowmundee in D grade......I certainly remember seeing quite a few XTC`s but unfortunately cant put a face with the bikes......how did you end up going in the race?....it certainly got hot on that second lap, glad i only entered D grade that day...lol
    Another thing I`m considering in regards to lightening up the wheels is to try a pair of Continental Twisters...super light (2 Twisters would save nearly a pound in weight)and very raceable according to some of the reviews on here......the one probs is that i really do like the handling of the Panaracers, they really stick well and are very resistant to flats ( have only had one in 4 months).
    Cheers

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    Hey Bike Freak,
    Yep certainly was at Yellowmundee in D grade......I certainly remember seeing quite a few XTC`s but unfortunately cant put a face with the bikes......how did you end up going in the race?....it certainly got hot on that second lap, glad i only entered D grade that day...lol
    Another thing I`m considering in regards to lightening up the wheels is to try a pair of Continental Twisters...super light (2 Twisters would save nearly a pound in weight)and very raceable according to some of the reviews on here......the one probs is that i really do like the handling of the Panaracers, they really stick well and are very resistant to flats ( have only had one in 4 months).
    Cheers
    I sent you a Private message.
    But anyways..I ended up coming 10th, as I have said before, that my Tech skills aren't too good. I ran/walked a couple of the tech sections inclusing the whole V ditch both times!!
    One thing besides getting light tires if tires with low rolling resistance. I use pythons whuch seem to suit the local tracks well but tthey do lack in some areas and are probably not as grippy as your panaracers. Have you tried stans? I am thinking about getting it, Saul Britton is the importer of it, the whole kit goes for about 109 bucks, pretty good vaule, you probably won't loose much weight but I won't have to worry about flats with lighter tires. Just a thought.

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    which seat post would you suggest on my vt choosing between a thompson and a carbon seat post coz of its lighter weight but worried that it wouldn't stay in place

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeymike
    which seat post would you suggest on my vt choosing between a thompson and a carbon seat post coz of its lighter weight but worried that it wouldn't stay in place
    Go with the thompson without the shim cause this is a great seatpost and basiclly industructable. But the carbon post does offer a small wieght saving but I don't beleive it's worth it, cause you ave to be careful how much you tighten them and all.

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    panaracer fire xc

    hey how were these tires? their supposed to be all around tires right? How do they hold up in all sorts of conditions?

    Thanks

  11. #11
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    Avoid the carbon post if possible, put a Thomsom without the shim and it will last forever.

    I'm planning on racing mine on a 24hr race at the end of our racing season (fall) and maybe a marathon race. The plushness of the VT is the reason why I'll take it instead of my SS hardtail even though I ride the SS more often.

  12. #12

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    Panaracer Fire XC 2.1

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. VT
    hey how were these tires? their supposed to be all around tires right? How do they hold up in all sorts of conditions?

    Thanks
    I`ve found these to be an outstanding tyre for the conditions here in Australia....I`ve mainly ridden/raced them on loose surfaces with a fair bit of sandstone and powdery dust.
    Their puncture resistance has been outstanding as well.....I`ve only had one flat on them in over 1000 miles (and that was a jagged piece of wire from the road that wouldve flatted near any tyre).
    Prior to using the Panaracers i had the Hutchinson Scorpions and these were hopeless for the conditions here.....the Scorpions would be oversteering terribly in sections where the Fire XC`s just grip and do their job.
    Due to the really dry conditions here i havent ridden them in mud so cant help in regards to advice on their performance in mud, however ....in damp conditions they again grip very well.
    Hmmm now theres only 2 slight downers I`d say about these tyres....rolling resistance (they dont roll as good as some other tyres, but make up for this with grip)...and weight (at around 570grams theyre no lightweight, which could be an issue if you plan on racing them).
    Hope this helps
    Cheers Andy

  13. #13

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    Thomson Elite

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeymike
    which seat post would you suggest on my vt choosing between a thompson and a carbon seat post coz of its lighter weight but worried that it wouldn't stay in place
    I agree 100% with what Bike Freak said.......the Thomsons are basically bullet-proof.
    By my measurements the Thomson 30.9 should fit the VT perfectly and allow removal of that darn shim (giving you a further 40g weight saving with the shim gone).
    Cheers Andy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    I agree 100% with what Bike Freak said.......the Thomsons are basically bullet-proof.
    By my measurements the Thomson 30.9 should fit the VT perfectly and allow removal of that darn shim (giving you a further 40g weight saving with the shim gone).
    Cheers Andy

    TNX GUYS

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    I`ve found these to be an outstanding tyre for the conditions here in Australia....I`ve mainly ridden/raced them on loose surfaces with a fair bit of sandstone and powdery dust.
    Their puncture resistance has been outstanding as well.....I`ve only had one flat on them in over 1000 miles (and that was a jagged piece of wire from the road that wouldve flatted near any tyre).
    Prior to using the Panaracers i had the Hutchinson Scorpions and these were hopeless for the conditions here.....the Scorpions would be oversteering terribly in sections where the Fire XC`s just grip and do their job.
    Due to the really dry conditions here i havent ridden them in mud so cant help in regards to advice on their performance in mud, however ....in damp conditions they again grip very well.
    Hmmm now theres only 2 slight downers I`d say about these tyres....rolling resistance (they dont roll as good as some other tyres, but make up for this with grip)...and weight (at around 570grams theyre no lightweight, which could be an issue if you plan on racing them).
    Hope this helps
    Cheers Andy
    How much weight would you consider to be a lightweight tire? I would imagine that having a light weight tire may compromise on some performance as well. If the weight difference isn't too much, i would imagine that having a grippier tire may be worth a bit of a weight penalty. Does anybody have experiance with the Fire XC's in mud?

    Thanks for the help!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. VT
    How much weight would you consider to be a lightweight tire? I would imagine that having a light weight tire may compromise on some performance as well. If the weight difference isn't too much, i would imagine that having a grippier tire may be worth a bit of a weight penalty. Does anybody have experiance with the Fire XC's in mud?

    Thanks for the help!
    A light weight tire is under 500 grams, not under 400 like some tires(they are stupid, but do work). The tires and tubes are best place to save weight on the whole bike(and cheap too), but I wouldn't coprimise grip for weight.

  17. #17
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    Fire XCs

    I have a set of these (UST version) on my XTC and they are alright in mud...the really thick clay doesn't clear terribly well, but I haven't seen a tire that where it does. They are way better than other tires I've run (MutanoRaptor, Wildgrippers) for what its worth

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    Quote Originally Posted by CJLED
    I have a set of these (UST version) on my XTC and they are alright in mud...the really thick clay doesn't clear terribly well, but I haven't seen a tire that where it does. They are way better than other tires I've run (MutanoRaptor, Wildgrippers) for what its worth
    ah ic, hows the rolling resistance on the tubeless version?

  19. #19

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    Lightweight

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. VT
    How much weight would you consider to be a lightweight tire? I would imagine that having a light weight tire may compromise on some performance as well. !
    I`d agree that any tyre under or around the 500g mark would be classed as a lightweight.....theres a thread in the Saving Weight forum on lightweight racing tyres and it seems a lot of the guys there are raving about how good the Schwalbe Racing Ralphs are....apparently handle better than the Fire XC`s and are very very light.....they also give high praise to the Jimmy Lite tyres (I`ve searched a few online retailers and havent been able to find these in their stocks )
    One problem here is being able to get a place that sells these tyres.....even the Fire XC`s (which are very common worldwide) are only available in one store that I`ve found online here in Oz, and thats deanwoods.com.au
    Cheers Andy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    I`d agree that any tyre under or around the 500g mark would be classed as a lightweight.....theres a thread in the Saving Weight forum on lightweight racing tyres and it seems a lot of the guys there are raving about how good the Schwalbe Racing Ralphs are....apparently handle better than the Fire XC`s and are very very light.....they also give high praise to the Jimmy Lite tyres (I`ve searched a few online retailers and havent been able to find these in their stocks )
    One problem here is being able to get a place that sells these tyres.....even the Fire XC`s (which are very common worldwide) are only available in one store that I`ve found online here in Oz, and thats deanwoods.com.au
    Cheers Andy
    ah ic, thanks for the reply, i wonder how well do they last tho, like as normal trail riding tires as well, i wonder if they wear out really fast.

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    Tyres

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. VT
    ah ic, thanks for the reply, i wonder how well do they last tho, like as normal trail riding tires as well, i wonder if they wear out really fast.
    Thats the prob with a lot of these super-grippy tyres....they use soft compounds which tend to wear out quite quickly.
    Cheers

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    Thats the prob with a lot of these super-grippy tyres....they use soft compounds which tend to wear out quite quickly.
    Cheers
    so the panaracer's would probably be ideal for like a good "all-conditions" type of tire that would last you for a long time? and arn't the panaracer's with the kevlar beads around the 500g mark too?
    thanks

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    Kevlar Panaracers

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. VT
    so the panaracer's would probably be ideal for like a good "all-conditions" type of tire that would last you for a long time? and arn't the panaracer's with the kevlar beads around the 500g mark too?
    thanks
    From what i can gather, the Fire XC`s with the kevlar bead are the ones that weigh around the 570g mark......i havent seen the Fire XC`s weight advertised around 500g mark even with Kevlar....but bear in mind theres a 1.9 width Fire XC that may be closer to the 500g weight.
    Another tyre that may be worth considering is the Panaracer Trailblaster 2.1. If you read the reviews it seems quite good, although there are some negative reviews as well. These tyres come in a bit lighter than the Fire XC`s (Trailblasters weigh 530g) and Panaracer advertise them as having the same handling properties as the Fire XC`s. I`d love to give them a try but havent found anywhere here Down Under that sells them :-( so I`ll stick with the Fire XC`s.
    Considering the large amount of riding i do, I`m very happy with how the Fire XC`s have lasted.
    Cheers

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