• 08-18-2013
    2014 Motobecane 550HT Build
    I purchased the new 550HT from bikes direct and awaiting its arrival to my door sometime after the 20th of this month.

    Without even having the bike on hand I have already purchased a large amount of upgrades for it for fun.

    Im replacing everything but the seat, headset and frame as of now.

    Part of the fun is the build on paper so here it goes..All items listed I have already purchased and have or are still awaiting arrival to my door.

    Hope you enjoy.

    SR Suntour Epicon X2 fork with remote lock out.
    Ritchey Pro 4 axis Stem
    Titanium Stem and head bolts
    Ritchey Pro seat post
    Ritchey Rizer XC handlebars
    Omni Seat post clamp
    WTB speed V saddle (stock seat)
    WTB All Mountain Speed Disc wheels
    WTB Velociraptor Tires (26x2.10)
    Titanium Skewers
    Sram PG850 Cassette
    Ashima Ai2 180mm front brake rotor
    Ashima Ai2 160mm rear brake rotor
    Titanium rotor bolts
    Avid Elixir 1 Hydraulic Disc brake set (front and rear)
    Avid 160 to 180mm disc brake caliper adapter
    WTB Tech Trail Clamp on grips
    Shimano Deore XT Shifters
    Jagwire Ripcord Shifter cable set
    Shimano Deore XT front derailleur
    Shimano Deore XT shadow rear derailleur (Medium Cage)
    Shimano Deore Crank set with BB51 Bottom bracket
    KMC X8.99 chain
    Wellgo M20 Pedals
    Elite Carbon water bottle cage
    Titanium water bottle cage bolts
    Cheap 28oz water bottle
    Cheap bike computer
    Mini bike pump
    mini seat bag

    I think I covered everything but the riding gear I bought also..lol

    Everything was purchased new with the exception of the XT shifters.

    Ill post up pics of the parts later and pics of the bike once I receive it.
  • 08-22-2013
    22 Attachment(s)
    Not my actual bike but its the bike I ordered..Shipping is between the 20th and 27th of this month. Still no shipping confirmation from BikesDirect.com
    Attachment 825823

    Parts ive ordered and have in possession for the build.

    Epicon X2 Fork w/ remote lock out (100mm)
    Attachment 825824

    WTB All mountain speed disc with WTB velociraptor tires
    Attachment 825825

    Titanium wheel skewers
    Attachment 825835

    Ashima Ai2 Rotors (180mm front/160mm rear)
    Attachment 825826

    Avid Elixir 1 Hydraulic disc brake system (2013 model)
    Attachment 825827

    Sram PG850 cassette (11/32)
    Attachment 825828

    KMC X8.99 chain (116link)
    Attachment 825830

    Shimano Deore crankset w/Hollowtec BB51 bottom braket (44/32/22) 175mm
    Attachment 825829

    Wellgo M20 Pedals
    Attachment 825834

    Shimano Deore XT front derailleur
    Attachment 825838

    Shimano Deore XT Shadow rear derailleur (Medium cage)
    Attachment 825836

    Shimano Deore XT Shifters (Purchased used)
    Attachment 825837

    Jagwire Ripcord Shifter cable kit
    Attachment 825846

    Ritchey Pro Seat post (10 degree off-set)
    Attachment 825840

    Omni Seat post clamp
    Attachment 825843

    Ritchey Pro 4 axis stem (31.8mm/90mm)
    Attachment 825847

    WTB Trail tech clamp on grips
    Attachment 825841

    Elite Sior water bottle cage
    Attachment 825844

    Titanium rotor bolts, stem bolts and head set bolt
    Attachment 825839

    Titanium water bottle cage bolts
    Attachment 825842

    The handle bars I don't have yet and a few other odds and ends..will add when I get them.

    Giro helmet and gloves
  • 08-22-2013
    Sweet... lots of toys you got there.

    I guess its a bit late now, but just curious if you ever considered just buying a frame only and building up with all your parts?... Seeing as how you're going to rip off all the existing parts off the bike immediately anyway.
  • 08-22-2013
    The take off parts are going on another project bike...so killing 2 birds with one stone.

    Doing a project on a 2013 model Mongoose XR200 as well...like the one MTBR did a review on.

    Everything off the motobecane including the Tektro hydraulics and adding a Manitou rear air shock as well...I wont be doing the build on MTBR though.
  • 08-22-2013
    I have to say I was skeptical as to manufacturer claims on weight on components.

    Much to my surprise most were dead on claims..some slightly higher..some slightly lower but very very close to the claims..I weighed all the parts I have listed and have a total of 10,000grams even so far...the frame and headset assembly and the saddle I have not weighed as of yet..but im at 22lbs right now..My guess is the frame is 4.3 to 4.5lbs and maybe just under 1 pound for the saddle... guessing ill end up with something in the low to mid 27lb range when its completed...Ill post the weights once I fill in the blanks on claimed weights for the parts...Should be a fun trail bike/commuter that can take alittle abuse.
  • 08-24-2013
    1 Attachment(s)
    I ordered a new saddle off ebay..Its about 85g less weight than the WTB Speed V saddle coming with the bike...Not weight weenie but figured for $9.00 why not...lol
    Attachment 826490
  • 08-25-2013
    1 Attachment(s)
    Well I received my ritchey bars..they will work but a little disappointed at the claimed weight versus actual weight..claimed 306g but I weighed it at 365g.. a bit heavier than I was expecting.
    Attachment 826627
  • 08-25-2013
    Any shipping confirmation yet? I'm getting impatient for mine!!!
  • 08-25-2013
    no..not yet..It said on the site when I ordered it would ship between the 20th and the 27th..So guess I have till Tuesday to see if I get confirmation or not...If not; guess I need to call them and see whats going on...Ive been waiting awhile..Put mine on order the first week of August.
  • 08-27-2013
    I got my confirmation today..im guessing a week to get it..It says shipping weight is 30lbs..Lighter than I thought it would be..box and packaging and ties wraps etc..has to be at least 1 pound or more...So maybe I end up with a 25-26lb build..time will tell.
  • 08-27-2013
    Really!? That's great for you. I haven't received mine yet. Going to email them tomorrow. I'm looking forward to the pics of the completed build!
  • 09-04-2013
    Received the bike yesterday finally..shipped a day late then had to wait longer for actual delivery to the house due to labor day..All went together smoothly as stock...Going out of town till next Thursday so the build wont start till I get back..Looking forward to changing everything out and getting this rolling..I must say im very impressed with the weld quality on this frame..no pin holes and very nice even overlaps..the frame is very heavy duty on the back side and has a replaceable derailleur hanger.

    Will post up a few pics shortly
  • 09-04-2013
    4 Attachment(s)
  • 09-18-2013
    Any new progress on the build?

    I just took delivery of a 550 in black on Monday. Put it together, still needs a few adjustments to the front and rear derailleurs.
  • 09-29-2013
    I'd love to hear more about your initial thoughts as well as your upgrade progress as well. I'm expecting delivery of my 550ht on wednesday and cant wait to dig in. Looks like you have a lot of really nice components lines up.
  • 05-18-2014
    Wow ive been gone for a while..lol

    Since last post and having everything for the build listed; I decided I didn't have the time to ride like I anticipated but just recently im finding some time.

    Ive sold most of the parts I bought for the build but still had some left and now in the process of installing what I can on it.

    I sold the fork and the avid brakes,ashima rotors,jagwire ripcord cables and a few other small items.

    Heres what I have so far installed to the bike,,not much riding on it but it will come soon enough.

    Ritchey Pro 4 axis stem
    Ritchey Comp handle bars
    WTB Tech Trail clamp on grips
    Titanium stem bolts (all)
    Lightweight Anodized skewers
    Wellgo M-20 pedals (seem to small..very light but changing them soon.)
    Cheap bike computer
    Cheap Schwinn mini pump
    Elite sior water bottle cage and cheap bottle
    Vader saddle

    When I get some more ashima rotors ill intstall those on the WTB speed disc wheels along with the SRAM PG850 cassette and get the wheels installed.
  • 05-23-2014
    I got the SRAM PG850 installed on the WTB rear wheel...Something I found I liked was the freehub wasn't plastic like I thought it would be..seems to be alloy...Im liking this bike more and more for the price.

  • 06-06-2014
    After having your bike for a while, would you buy the 2015 motobecane 529HT if you had to do it all over again? Also if you did, would you be fine with keeping most of the stock parts and only replacing the pedals and seat?
  • 06-07-2014
    In all honesty I haven't really used the stock parts for a long term to say how reliable or not.

    I can say they are considered reliable entry level componants..The sram x4 has shifted with no problems for me the times I have used it..the cranks feel solid so far but they are still new so hard to say..The fork is not going to be anything special either but is ok for light duty.

    The brakes are basic entry level and they will stop you, but not on a dime...I wouldn't do anything to aggressive speed wise with them.. they are better than any entry level mechanical but far from BB7 mechanical or better hydraulics

    I would get some better pads and a bigger front rotor and maybe a SRAM X5 rear derailleur...As far as the rest, just ride it till it wears out or breaks.

    So to answer your question..Yes I would get the 29er if I was in the market for one..The price is great for what you're getting compared to anything else on the markets from Bikes Direct for the same money...Prices are so good some are buying them for the parts on them and selling the frames if they have a more high end frame...lol..But thiers nothing wrong with the frames at all..they are quality frames without the high price of a name brand sticker on it.
  • 06-08-2014
    the 529 is pretty decent. $400 for hydro brakes (although cheap ones) and an 8-speed (super easy to adjust and the 11-32 shimano or sunrace cassette's gear split is great for an 8-speed). I'd get it if I was looking for a bike.

    Another one similar pricewise is the gravity 29.1. Better drivetrain and stronger rims, but worse brakes. Basically, drivetrain longevity vs. stopping power. I'd go with stopping power.

    If you can swing $700, check out the gravity 29.4. Probably one of their best priced bang for the buck bikes if you're planning on taking on rocks, roots, and technical terrain. If you're just looking at fire roads and semi smooth singletrack, the 529 is great.
  • 07-07-2014
    1 Attachment(s)
    Sweet build
    Ive been slowly replacing parts on my 550. Heres where it stands now:

    Attachment 906411

    Parts List:
    Fork: Rockshox Revelation RCT
    Wheels: Mavic Crossride 26
    Tires: Conti Mountain king/xking F/R (both racesport)
    Ritchey Carbon Bars
    Truvativ 32 mm stem
    Truvativ seatpost
    wtb speedV seat
    Shimano xt trail pedals
    Truvative Isoflow cranks
    Raceface Chainring (34)
    Sram x4 shifter and deraileur
    Sram Pg850 chain
    Azonic 135X10 thru bolt rear
    Sette Lock on grips
    FSA compression plug
    Tektro Draco Brakes (Sintered pads)
    Ashima 180 mm rotors F/R
  • 04-21-2015
    Is anyone using one of these bicycle "out of the box" and how do you like it?
    How much would you say they weigh?
    We are looking at buying one for my Husband. I have a DB FATTY Gravity Bullseye Monster and LOVE it. We will probably buy him one just like mine this coming Fall/Winter.
  • 04-21-2015
    Out of the box its fairly capable with the exception of the fork, IMO. If I recall, mine weighed about 33 lbs in 19.5 size. Its been completely upgraded at this point, but its a fine entry level ride for the money.
  • 04-21-2015
    Thank you. We were going to buy another DB bicycle, the Fantom 29 Trail, but they have been out of stock for some time now. So we have been looking around on DB's site and in LBS. Since my FATTY is so nice, from DB, and for the money, amazing! We are not afraid to buy another DB Bicycle.....after reading reviews, of course. <grins>

    Thanks again.
  • 04-21-2015
    I assume you meant BD (as in bikes direct) and not DB (as in diamond back)? You're still hard pressed to find a bigger bang for the buck than bikes direct or airborne.
  • 04-21-2015
    I've bought a couple bikes from bikesdirect, and they've all been good. If you're looking for a true mountain bike trail machine, look for one that has a rockshox recon silver fork (or comparable fork) at a minimum. The XC32 is acceptable if you weight 180 pounds. They send out all their rockshox forks with the standard weight spring. I'm actually running a dart2 (XC28) on one of my bikes right now, and it works. It's no recon, but it works hands down better than an XCT.

    Now for the catch. BD is sending out some of their bikes with a hydraulic lockout (HLO) XCT fork. Much, much better fork than their older suntour ones. It's still no recon, but is comparable to a rockshox dart 2 or XC28 Turnkey. With BD, I'd stick with their cheaper bikes with plans to upgrade what I want or get one of their more expensive ones that has the good stuff. don't go for one of their mid-tier/lower tier ones. The motobecane 429 is an acceptable bike for a realy good price ($370). don't be afraid of 8-speed. They work well. With the money saved, buy a better fork.

    Another alternative, and one I've done on a couple occasions, is buy a bike off bikeisland (the BD scratch & dent site) that is missing a fork. It's usually a junk fork to start with, so you're not out anything and the price is usually a whole lot less than it was to start with. Use that money saved to get a better fork.
  • 04-21-2015

    Originally Posted by GuitsBoy View Post
    I assume you meant BD (as in bikes direct) and not DB (as in diamond back)? You're still hard pressed to find a bigger bang for the buck than bikes direct or airborne.

    Guilty. I am dyslexic. Ha3 Yes. BikesDirect.
    Thanks for your input. I am going to have my husband read all these and then....pull the trigger on the bicycle? <smiles>
  • 04-22-2015
    If you haven't bought one, might change BD back to DB. nashbar has a decent price on their diamondbacks right now (ie 20% off today). This is probably one of the better bang for the buck you'll get there right now. 9-speed, hydraulic damping, and a recognized name if you decide to sell it later to get an upgrade.
    Diamondback Overdrive Sport 29er Mountain Bike - Nashbar Exclusive
  • 04-22-2015

    Originally Posted by watts888 View Post
    If you haven't bought one, might change BD back to DB. nashbar has a decent price on their diamondbacks right now (ie 20% off today). This is probably one of the better bang for the buck you'll get there right now. 9-speed, hydraulic damping, and a recognized name if you decide to sell it later to get an upgrade.
    Diamondback Overdrive Sport 29er Mountain Bike - Nashbar Exclusive

    Thanks, we have not bought yet. But I did contact them about the one we REALLY wanted, but seem to be Clearanced now, and they do not have the size or color we want.

    We are also talking about him going ahead and buying a FATTY like mine, Gravity Bulleye Monster, while they have the size and color we want. <smiles> Last year I waited and waited for bikesdirect to have the right size and color for me, when October came, was the selling season. So, buying that one now and waiting for the Mt bike/Hybrid he really wants, seems to be a good idea.

    But so far, we have not pulled the trigger on any of them yet.

    We are getting ready to go and ride our bicycles......