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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
SO I have an Abajo Peak. I ordered last August. Didn’t arrive till January. I just started MTB last August. Started with a cheap bike from dicks and after 2 rides realized I was going to love this sport so I I’d my research and ordered the Abajo Peak.

I currently have about 650 miles on the thing and It’s been great so far.

I am in the Northeast. Trails are rock, roots, lots of ups and downs. Some decent climbs, we average about 110 vertical ft per mile ridden. Not much flow at my daily trails system but gotten up to Kingdom Trails in VT once and we do have one place near here that has 2 downhill flow trails.

Skills wise I am probably close to a solid intermediate at this point. And much of that progress has been in the last couple of months. I am in my late 40s so priority is always getting out in one piece. When I first started I had no intention of doing rollers or jumps or drops. I just wanted to be out in the woods. But that mindset has changed and I am hitting more and more technical trails and features. I am finding that when I actually try something I usually can ride it. Just getting over that initial fear is my biggest obstacle.

On to the bike.

The not so great.
1. The brakes. This has actually become the first thing that is going to get upgraded. I just ordered the new TRP Trail EVOs (replacement for the discontinued Quadiems). As I have progressed and started riding steeper terrain and rock rollers I dont have much confidence in the SRAM Levels. They slow me down but don’t provide the stopping power I feel I need. Cant wait to get those installed.
2. The NX drivetrain is starting to act up, It was good at first, for maybe the first 300-400 miles. Had a lot of issues with shifting since then. Had it adjusted several times and still is just clunky. Not to mention it id heavy. Thinking about moving to a GX cassette and cranks and maybe GX AXS derailleur and levers. Will see. If I change the cassette will probably need a new Hub as the NX is not compatible with the hub for the GX and up.
3. Also recently ordered new PNW bars and stem. Mine came with a 60mm stem. I feel it just puts the bars out front to much. Getting 40 for the PNW. Hoping the bars reduce some of the feedback from all the chatter on the trails.

The good.
Overall I like everything else about the bike. It’s taken everything I have thrown at it. It’s stable. Climbing i struggle with but its probably more me than the bike lol. I am upgrading the chainring. I am dropping to a 28t oval to hopefully making climbing easier. Fezzari has been great to deal with, answered all my questions. I have their support number for chat on my phone and they respond to my texts pretty quickly.

SO upgrade?
I have learned a lot about different kinds of bikes, different types of terrain etc this year as I have gotten more engrossed in this sport. The trails and style of riding falls in the all mountain to enduro area. The northeast is a rough place to ride, no matter where you go or what the trail is rated it is usually covered in rocks and roots and usually is not flat. So with all these new parts ordered I am wondering if it makes sense to basically start replacing all the components on this frame or look to move to the Delano or LaSal as a hopefully final bike frame. I am not doubting this frame can handle things, just wondering if it makes sense to go to the lighter carbon frame with slightly more travel for the long term. Has anyone been in a similar spot with the Abajo/Cascade?
 

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Is the new bar carbon? They can potentially help but only a tiny bit. OneUp supposedly has the most give/damping, not sure where PNW ranks. Best thing is to tune your fork. Talk to local bike mechanic about what you're experiencing, discuss fork inserts and tunes. You have to service it at some point anyway, so maybe during service they can improve the feel and help your hands. On the cassette did you inspect the rings? Are there significant signs of wear? GX is lighter, but not necessarily better for durability. Also, something I learned the hard way was to be obsessive about cleaning and lubing the chain and rings. You spend a little more on lube and cleaner, but you can double the life of your components if you had been letting them get dirty a lot.

As for an upgrade, if you want to race Enduro in local competitions, or regularly ride Enduro trails, the La Sal is the better bet for sure. Check out the "Minerbiker" YouTube channel, he rides a La Sal all over the Rockies, mostly backcountry Utah.

I personally have a Delano Peak. IIRC my Delano runs about 32lbs with pedals. If your Abajo is in the 34-35 range, you probably would notice the couple extra pounds diff if you were climbing a lot. I do ride chunky rocky trails at times, and once in a while wish for a little more travel, but overall I'm pretty happy with it and don't plan to change it. Very good all-mountain bike. I don't have much jump or drop-to-downhill trails near me so don't do that much, just occasional 2-3' drops to flat, and those are about as much as I would want to do on the Delano. If I had to ride chunky rooty trails every single ride I would want something more like La Sal. Friend has Ripmo v2 and is pretty happy with it, but as a comparable it's a little more expensive. If you've got the cash for a new bike, I think buying either one over upgrading the Abajo would make you a happy camper.
 

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I've had my Abajo since July of last year. I have 1,950 miles on it.
  • I started out with Guide 4 pistons. I knew the levels weren't going to be any good
  • I have no problems with my NX drive train. In fact I had to replace the derailleur due to an incident and just went NX again. GX cranks aren't going to improve anything, a GX cassette is lighter, and GX shifter, derailleur is marginally better IMO.
  • Your upgrade in the bars and stem is strictly a personal choice. If you really think it, getting another bike, you would still make those purchases
Now, I bought the Abajo knowing I would upgrade it over time. My first upgrade, which again you would likely make on any bike, was custom built wheels. I got DT Swiss EX511 laced on Race Face Vault hubs, with DT Swiss comp spokes. The wheels have completely changed the way the bike rides. The suspension works better and there's way less deflection and skirm. Next on my list is larger rotors and I have a 30T chainring on the way.

So other than cause you're spending money on the bike do you want to upgrade? What is it about the Abajo that's holding you back? I ask because if you don't know, do you think a new bike is going to solve anything?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I've had my Abajo since July of last year. I have 1,950 miles on it.
  • I started out with Guide 4 pistons. I knew the levels weren't going to be any good
  • I have no problems with my NX drive train. In fact I had to replace the derailleur due to an incident and just went NX again. GX cranks aren't going to improve anything, a GX cassette is lighter, and GX shifter, derailleur is marginally better IMO.
  • Your upgrade in the bars and stem is strictly a personal choice. If you really think it, getting another bike, you would still make those purchases
Now, I bought the Abajo knowing I would upgrade it over time. My first upgrade, which again you would likely make on any bike, was custom built wheels. I got DT Swiss EX511 laced on Race Face Vault hubs, with DT Swiss comp spokes. The wheels have completely changed the way the bike rides. The suspension works better and there's way less deflection and skirm. Next on my list is larger rotors and I have a 30T chainring on the way.

So other than cause you're spending money on the bike do you want to upgrade? What is it about the Abajo that's holding you back? I ask because if you don't know, do you think a new bike is going to solve anything?
Well let me try and answer all of this.

When I bought the Abajo I really knew nothing about bikes, nothing about XC vs Trail vs Enduro, nothing about components, how they all worked differently on different types of trails for different styles of riders. I had basically ridden asingletrakc a few times, knew I was going to like it and knew my $250 Nishiki probably was not the best choice on the trails in my area :D

SO as a first bike the Abajo Peak has been great. When I started I was also riding easier terrain and less mileage. I would do 3-4 mile rides on mostly beginner trails. Earlier this year I found a couple guys to ride with on a regular basis. Weather permitting we ride 30-40 miles a week on average. They are better riders than I am and so I have been pushed to get better and work my way through tougher trails. In the beginning I walked a lot, lol. Now I am riding more and more of the difficult trails. There are 2 trails in peticular I used to hate as they are filled will small (1-3 ft) drops and lots of rock rollers. Now I am tackling more and more rollers each ride and starting to look at the smaller drops. I am riding much steeper terrain and much chunkier terrain.

So I am starting to notice some some things that are not ideal about the Abajo Peak for where I am now at and where I hope to be as I progress. First the brakes are no longer strong enough. I dont have a lot of confidence with them when riding steeper rock faces, doing rollers, going down steep chunkier trails. The NX drive chain I have found to be clunky. I am constantly having to try and adjust it and it continues to come out of wack. Not to mention its a boat anchor. The wheels are ok, but starting to get dinged up and I would not mind some better engaging hubs. The handle bars dont seem to kill much f the vibration as I do get some pretty sore hands at times. It's gotten a little better with new grips but still an issue. Also the big shipped with a 60mm stem for some reason so I would like to pull that in.

So as I have started to compile parts, new TRP brakes, new larger rotors, new stem and handle bars, GX drivetrain and getting ready to order new hubs and wheels (i9 hydra with Stans Flow MK4) I guess I am just wondering does it makes sense to basically rebuild the Abajo Or maybe move to the Delano as a hopefully final bike. It should be lighter, has a longer wheelbase, lower stand over height and is a little more slack. I would get a little more travel front and rear which should be all I would ever need. I could also then just sell my Abajo to help with the overall upgrade.

So thats where my head is at right now. I just dont know if it makes more sense to buy a bunch of components for a bike that will cost more than the entire bike originally cost. I think I could end up with a better overall bike if I make a total move and just build what I want. I am definitely leaning Delano over La Sal as I am not crazy about the top tube on that bike and the higher stand over.
 

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First let me say I'm not truing to argue with you, just playing devils advocate. If you want a new cause you want a new bike, get it. You don't need the internets approval. Your response is the same thing as your first post. No where in there do you say, this is holding me back, other than the brakes. Here's what I think I'd do, upgrade the Abajo and get better parts on it, than you would be buying a whole new bike.

New brakes $250
Custom Wheels $800-$1000
New drivetrain $500 (or buy a higher grade derailleur and shifter and just replace those)

Still cheaper than a new bike.
 

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You can read my reviews on the Abajo. I did go slx brake, carbon wheel, Gx cassette, carbon bar from the get-go. I have been riding 10+ years, so I know what I wanted. The only change I'd make is to a bike that is poppier going up, because I like climbing. Carbon ibis Ripley maybe? By any other measure the bike is not holding me back in any way. I probably have 100 or so rides on it over two years. If you've got the new bike bug, then go for it. I'd be surprised if this one wasn't up to what you're throwing at it, considering what the average person is riding when they're really new, but I don't really know what you're riding.

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