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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
...a new to me suspension bike up to speed for a ride this weekend if possible.

It is an All GT Terra Tequesta, it has Answer Manitou ProX Cartridge front shocks and it has a seat shock that has some kind of interchangable plugs that affect the plushness of the ride. I'm not all that concerned about the plushness in the back at this point, frankly, cause I think coming from a rigid, I'm already gonna be in culture shock with the front suspension.

What needs to happen so I can ride this weekend is...

...it needs new shifters. How do I know what kind? What is the best way I can pick up something used and put it on myself? I really want to start learning to be as self sufficient as possible in these areas.

...how do I get the bike set up as optimally as possible for my body fit? What info about the bike do you need and what about me?

Essentially I am 5 foot 1.5 inches and weigh around 117 pounds if weighed before post ride inhalations of Orville Rednecker's Stove Popped Popcorn and Chocolate Malted Ovaltine eaten by dry spoonfuls out of the jar.

Thanks so much for your help and sorry I'm a bit loopy...it's been one helluva day. Hope yours has been better and filled with sweet rides.

thanks, tg
 

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T.W.O.
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Ok, do you have a pic of the bike and components. If it's and older bike the parts may not be compatible. For example, if the bike has shimano deore shifter and derailleurs 7 speed you need to get something that's compatible to it.

The front shock (fork) well, post some pic we'll figure it out. I have some links (you tube) that you can follow on how to adjust shifter/ derailleurs, and a few other diy repair. Sounded like you have the suspension seatpost the elastomer kind instead of coil spring or air spring. It supposed to take the edge of some bumps. Is this bike 26" or same 24" wheel?
 

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i had a tequesta back in the mid to late 90's.
my memory is not so great anymore but i think it was 3x8 with a a mix of alvio-level components & bottom-of-the range rockshox fork, something like 60-80mm travel.
it was a good solid frame & back in the day it was an all-around fun bike.
is yours well-used or one of those that was ridden a few miles & then sat untouched for years in the garage? you have to decide if it is worth the time, effort & money to rebuild/upgrade most components to modern standards or run it on a shoe-string leaving as much as possible as-is, considering that it is not worth much now except to you for whatever riding you can get out of.
since you mentioned, "it needs new shifters" but did not ask about the fork...
what is wrong with shifting? does it shift at all? is the problem actually shifters or deraillers? maybe just thorough cleaning & adjusting will do it or are any of the parts completely shot & need replacing?
good luck & here is a previous mtbr mention of your bike, it is well-liked:
http://www.mtbr.com/cat/older-categories-bikes/bike/gt/tequesta-bike/PRD_349386_91crx.aspx

ooops...just noticed your other thread about your shifting probs, guess you are getting help & info there.
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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Tank Girl said:
...a new to me suspension bike up to speed for a ride this weekend if possible.

It is an All GT Terra Tequesta, it has Answer Manitou ProX Cartridge front shocks and it has a seat shock that has some kind of interchangable plugs that affect the plushness of the ride. I'm not all that concerned about the plushness in the back at this point, frankly, cause I think coming from a rigid, I'm already gonna be in culture shock with the front suspension.

What needs to happen so I can ride this weekend is...

...it needs new shifters. How do I know what kind? What is the best way I can pick up something used and put it on myself? I really want to start learning to be as self sufficient as possible in these areas.

...how do I get the bike set up as optimally as possible for my body fit? What info about the bike do you need and what about me?
Didn't see this earlier.

If you decide that the shifters are the problem, you need to match the brand on the shifter to the brand on the rear derailleur and the number of speeds on the shifter to the number of speeds on the cassette. 6-9-speed Shimano MTB derailleurs are more-or-less interchangeable, and the road rear derailleurs are too. So if your shifter's toast and your wheel will accept a cassette with more cogs, you can go to more gears if you want. 7-speed hubs are not necessarily compatible with 8- and 9-speed cassettes, however.

I'm not a fan of suspension seat posts. So I'd just get rid of it. Not everyone agrees with me. :D

Setting up a fork is as complicated or simple as you make it. From clicking around some, I've been able to figure out what the Pro X is, more-or-less. It's an old-school elastomer suspension fork - it absorbs force by compressing little rubber things. Elastomer forks don't always respond very well to age. The elastomers can dry out and get stiff and brittle. If that's happened to yours, it's probably not worth fixing. If everything's working, though...

Sounds like you have some kind of damping system on one side. Try to figure out which side is the spring side and which side is the damper side. They may be labeled or something. There may be some adjustments on your fork, but elastomer forks varied. Look for knobs on the top of the crown, and maybe on the bottom of one or both legs, and let us know what you've got. With elastomer forks, depending on what adjustments are available, you'd set sag, rebound damping, and compression damping if there is any. For me, to be better than a rigid fork, a suspension fork needs to be reasonably stiff, have about the right spring rate, and have some kind of rebound damping.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
mimi1885 said:
Ok, do you have a pic of the bike and components.

Not yet, I'll try to get some soon.


Is this bike 26" or same 24" wheel?

This one actually has 26" wheels...I feel so grown up now;) Actually, thanks for bringing this up...I just realized I'll have to get some 26" tubes for my saddle bag.:thumbsup:

Gung Hay Fat Choi, Mimi!!!! and dough jay for stopping by::D
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
markaitch said:
...is yours well-used or one of those that was ridden a few miles & then sat untouched for years in the garage?

Definately has been well used, but also well kept...one of the guys in my mtb group gave it to me, just had a major tune up done on it and had the shifters worked on a few times, but they are just worn out. Everything is Shimano STX and it is a 7 spd (

you have to decide if it is worth the time, effort & money to rebuild/upgrade most components to modern standards or run it on a shoe-string leaving as much as possible as-is,

I'm definately going to keep replacing parts to a minimum as I'd rather put that money toward a new fs bike.

here is a previous mtbr mention of your bike, it is well-liked:
http://www.mtbr.com/cat/older-categories-bikes/bike/gt/tequesta-bike/PRD_349386_91crx.aspx

Thanks for this link!
\and thanks for your help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
AndrwSwitch said:
Didn't see this earlier.

If you decide that the shifters are the problem, you need to match the brand on the shifter to the brand on the rear derailleur and the number of speeds on the shifter to the number of speeds on the cassette. 6-9-speed Shimano MTB derailleurs are more-or-less interchangeable,

As in, you can have 7 cogs with a 9 speed derailleur as long as you have a 7 speed shifter?

I'm not a fan of suspension seat posts. So I'd just get rid of it.

Curious to know your take on this, and as I am coming from a rigid bike, would your usual take be different with this in mind?

Setting up a fork is as complicated or simple as you make it. From clicking around some, I've been able to figure out what the Pro X is, more-or-less. It's an old-school elastomer suspension fork - it absorbs force by compressing little rubber things. Elastomer forks don't always respond very well to age. The elastomers can dry out and get stiff and brittle. If that's happened to yours, it's probably not worth fixing. If everything's working, though...

This bike, though well ridden, has been well loved and seen many a bike spa day at the LBS. I'm pretty sure whatever maintenance could be done to maintain/extend the lifespan of the elastomers, has been done. Given my limited experience and that I am used to zero suspension, how would I'd know if they were tired/unrevivable?

Sounds like you have some kind of damping system on one side. Try to figure out which side is the spring side and which side is the damper side. They may be labeled or something. There may be some adjustments on your fork, but elastomer forks varied.

That's very interesting. I thought both of those things were built together as one component.


Look for knobs on the top of the crown, and maybe on the bottom of one or both legs, and let us know what you've got.

Each side has the same exact type silver metal cap on top with a corrugated black plastic side (much like a dime or quarter) that unscrews easily/loosens. They appear identical, neither side has anything written on it. I didn't unscrew either very far, because I didn't want to injure or misadjust anything.

With elastomer forks, depending on what adjustments are available, you'd set sag, rebound damping, and compression damping if there is any. For me, to be better than a rigid fork, a suspension fork needs to be reasonably stiff, have about the right spring rate, and have some kind of rebound damping.

That makes a lot of sense, but sounds like one of those kind of things that can be tough to pull off in the actual adjustment.
As always I am most thankful whenever you stop by. I really appreciate all you've been teaching me.
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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If you really need to get shifters by this w/e, you'll likely have to get something from your LBS. 8 speed shimano compatible shifters will work just fine on 7 speed drivetrains, so that may give you some extra options. Hopefully you don't have the type that are integrated with the brake levers.

If you can't get trigger (rapidfire) type shifters locally, some LBS should have some 7 or 8 speed grip shifters and they are not that expensive (usually). If you aren't in so much of a hurry, e-bay usually has a good selection to choose from. Cambria Bike Outfitters also has compatible 7 and 8 speed shifters.

I highly recommend that you also replace the cables and housings while you are at it so everything works well. If you are going to put them on yourself, you'll need some cable/housing cutters. If you learn to service your drivetrain yourself, they will pay for themselves many times over.
 

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Your best bet to have it ready to ride this weekend is taking it to your local bike shop. If you haven't already, you should form a relationship with one.

AndrwSwitch said:
Not everyone agrees with me.
I agree with you.
 

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DynoDon
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You could go to Barnes & Nobels or order from Amazon, and get Zinn & the art of Mountain Bike Maintenance, Amazon has it for about $16.00.. lots of great info in there. Youtube, or Parktool.com for online info..
If you're in a hurry the LBS sounds like the best shot..but the Zinn book will come in handy down the road for sure.
That diet don't sound so good to me..LOL
good luck n' Happy Trails
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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The combination of 7 cogs, a 9-speed derailleur, and a 7-speed shifter should work fine. If you found that the chain was dragging on the insides of the derailleur cage, you could use a 9-speed chain to fix the problem, but I don't think it will happen.

Coming from a rigid, I still don't think a suspension seatpost is useful. The problem is that they only work if you sit on them. If you're on terrain where it would be useful for the seatpost to work, you shouldn't be sitting on it anyway. Some riders notice pedal bob, which can be quite disconcerting, a lot of suspension seatposts develop play, which is annoying, and it's adding weight and mechanical complication. I like my suspension fork, so obviously sometimes I think some extra weight and complication are worthwhile, but this isn't one of those times.

If a suspension fork has the right spring rate and setup for you, it should make it easier for you to keep your front wheel on the ground. The fork can use its whole travel to do this, depending on the terrain. If, even in the roughest terrain you ride, you don't use much of your travel, you need different elastomers. Whether it's because they're too stiff by design or due to age doesn't really matter. If you're curious, though, open up the fork, pull them out, and have a look. Degraded ones will be discolored, probably have a rough surface, might have visible cracks, etc. There are a few web sites offering recently-manufactured replacement elastomers. It could save you money over buying a new fork, but a new fork will be much, much better than the old one. Suspension has come a long way.

Like the rest of the bike, a suspension fork is a chassis with components attached to it. Sizes and stuff aren't standard, so replacement parts are usually restricted to what the manufacturer offers. Anyway, the spring that actually suspends the bike typically goes in one leg, and dampers and things, if any, go in the other. That's not always true, though.

If you can take some pictures of the fork, it would be really helpful in figuring out what's going on. Tuning a fork is somewhat similar to fitting a bike - it's nice to budget a ride on your own, when you won't be slowing your friends by stopping to mess with things. It might take a little minor tweaking after that, but the hope is to find a setting that doesn't need any further tinkering.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
jeffj said:
If you really need to get shifters by this w/e, you'll likely have to get something from your LBS.

One of the guys in my mtb group told me of a good lbs to check with, I'm going to call them in the morning and hope they have something that will work.

Hopefully you don't have the type that are integrated with the brake levers.

Thanks for bringing that up, I just looked and I'm not sure what to think. Initially I thought they were integrated, but on closer inspection it looks like the shifter seats into and is screwed into the brake levers, so I'm not sure if this is considered integrated or some kind of hybrid form, as it looks like the shifters can be traded out.

If you can't get trigger (rapidfire) type shifters locally,

I'm really hoping I can. The shifters on my Terry are as rigid as my bike and my thumbs get exhausted. I would be in HEAVEN with some modern shifters!

If you learn to service your drivetrain yourself, they will pay for themselves many times over.

I agree and I love being self sufficient on top of that. Besides, I am that kinda wingnut gurlie who used to use chrome polish on my banana seat bicycle's spokes, wheels and fenders after every rain ride (which was daily in the midwest) when I was twelve. I wish I still had that bike, funny thing is, it'd probably still fit:p
Thanks for your help!
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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Integrated shifter/brake levers share a single mounting clamp and unless I am misunderstanding what you wrote, it sounds like you may have the integrated type (if you had a a pic we could tell for certain). With the non-integrated type, the brake lever and the shifter each will have their own separate clamp.

If you don't have the integrated type, then disregard the following:

The downside with integrated is that if the shifter fails, you're buying a new integrated type or new levers and new shifters. IMHO, if you can it's a good idea to get separate shifters and brake levers. It only hurts once that way. OTOH, it is an older rig and you're not likely to need new ones again in it's lifetime, they do work just fine and they aren't that expensive since they are a lower tier item these days (for example, I don't think they still make XT level integrated shifter/brake levers like they used to).

These (are integrated, if that is what you have) would work just fine:

https://cgi.ebay.com/Shimano-Easy-F...Cycling_Parts_Accessories&hash=item53e620b1dc

They will supposedly work with cantilever or v-brake. Most are either v-brake or cantilever brake specific, so if you get something else make sure it is compatible with the type of brakes you have. Apparently STX level components had both cantilever and v-brakes depending on when they were made. (again) A pic or two would help to let us know what we're dealing with. The Tequesta was made at a time when brake technology was shifting (no pun intended) from cantilevers to v-brakes.

Kudos for being self-sufficient. I'm proud to say that my own daughter has worked in a couple shops and likes working on bikes too. But, alas, she spends most of her time on the dark side these days. . . . . ;~)



BTW: Do your shifters look like the ones (non-integrated) below?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
manabiker said:
You could go to Barnes & Nobels or order from Amazon, and get Zinn & the art of Mountain Bike Maintenance, Amazon has it for about $16.00
.. lots of great info in there.

Totally stoked to know of this book and know just the used bookstore that I will get it from...yay for me and thanks to you, I am one jazzed chiquita!!!!

If you're in a hurry the LBS sounds like the best shot.

Gotta a line on a good one I'll be checking out tomorrow and keeping my fingers crossed:thumbsup:

That diet don't sound so good to me..LOL

It doesn't sound good, but it tastes great!!! :D
Thanks again for the heads up on the book...will so think of you in the future when I use it:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
jeffj said:
IMHO, if you can it's a good idea to get separate shifters and brake levers.

I agree with this logic.

OTOH, it is an older rig and you're not likely to need new ones again in it's lifetime,

Good point, though. Will likely see what is available within this short time frame. Really want to make this ride, Sunday, and there is no way I can pull it off with my rigid.

Most are either v-brake or cantilever brake specific, so if you get something else make sure it is compatible with the type of brakes you have.

Good to know, I had no idea! This bike has cantilever brakes.

Kudos for being self-sufficient. I'm proud to say that my own daughter has worked in a couple shops and likes working on bikes too. But, alas, she spends most of her time on the dark side these days. . . . . ;~)

Too cool!!...and very awesome that you are such a proud papa:thumbsup:

BTW: Do your shifters look like the ones (non-integrated) below?

The actual shifter part looks exactly like that, however it doesn't have the silver clamp, it's all one black matte finished piece with the brake levers.
Thanks so much for all your help!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
AndrwSwitch said:
Coming from a rigid, I still don't think a suspension seatpost is useful. The problem is that they only work if you sit on them. If you're on terrain where it would be useful for the seatpost to work, you shouldn't be sitting on it anyway.

I totally get this.

Some riders notice pedal bob...

...and this would drive me bloody nuts!!!

...and it's adding...mechanical complication.

Excellent point. If there's one thing I learned in the Army... keep everything as basic as possible to keep everything running as much as possible. I'm not a high maintenance type myself and I prefer whatever is in my life to follow suit:thumbsup:

The fork can use its whole travel to do this, depending on the terrain.

Something I don't understand well is the relationship between the amount of travel you have, the amount you weigh and the amount of travel you will actually ever use or need. (Need as in xc or am, not dh or fr.) If you don't weigh much, wouldn't there be a drop off in benefit of increased available travel. Not sure I'm explaining this all that well, but am I right in thinking that my weight could only ever compress any shock so much? Let's say arbitrarily it's four inches...if that were the case, why would you ever get five inches? And along this line...how could you ever know/determine how many inches you would ever use?

If you're curious, though, open up the fork, pull them out, and have a look.

Yay for me!!! I feel like a kid that just got permission to peek at her Christmas presents. I'm gonna wait til after my ride Sunday though, just so I don't mess anything up by accident!
Thanks again for all your patience with me!!!
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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OK, so being that your existing brake levers are separate from the shifters, you can keep the existing levers (at least for the time being) and just replace the shifters. At this point mail order is not likely to arrive before your deadline, so it looks like your LBS is your best bet. Just remember that 7 speed or 8 speed shifters will both work great. IF you have to get grip shifters you need to make sure they come with the appropriate grips (they are shorter than standard grips) and the brake levers will mount inside of the (towards the stem) shifters.

Adjusting derailleurs isn't rocket science if you can follow directions. Shimano has good directions that come with their shifters, but if you're having trouble, we can walk you through it.

Good luck.
 
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