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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Probably my favorite kind of thread on this forum is the "new build" type - so here's mine ...

My first 29er - its a 2003 NOS X-Caliber frame and a mix of mostly new parts that took me about 6 weeks to collect. When I first got the bug to put together a new bike, I wanted something that would be faster, more efficient and better handling than my 4" FS Norco Fireball so that I could "get back to the basics" in my riding style. I had found myself getting way too lazy on that full suspension bike; just pointing it at something and riding over it - you know what I mean. I also wanted to stick to a reasonable budget. I succeeded in one of those! This bike ended up costing more than I thought, but it does appear to be faster and handles (carves turns) way better than my other bike.

Built it from the ground up, with no LBS assistance, some components: WB BW.8, '05 XT Crankset, '05 SRAM X9 trigger shifters/derailleur, Bonty RaceLite wheelset, Bonty Jones ACX tires, CC S2 headset, NOS Shimano XT Hydros (M755/756), Thudbuster, SDG S2000 Ti saddle (8 years old and still my favorite).

Anyways, a few observations about the build itself:
- Contrary to others advice here and GF's technical manual, the BB was not 73mm. It was faced down to 68mm ... which presented me quite a bit of confusion installing those new XT cranks, since I didn't bother to actually measure the shell! Once I realized it was 68mm, that new-style XT crank install was so simple.
- SRAM X9 drivetrain is absolutely brilliant. The XT shifters and whatnot off my other bike will be on EBay soon to be replaced by this stuff.
- The WB fork is very stiff, but is actually a little too "quiet". I really missed the air dampening sounds that my Marz Marathon SL makes on my other bike (let's you know when its working).
- I could not ride this bike without that Thudbuster.
- Got some Bonty RaceLite's from Nate the bike shop, they are nice and light, and the rear ratchet sounds very pleasing. Not too loud like CK hubs, not silent ... just right. I think they are DT Swiss Onyx hubs.
- I was gonna build this with Hayes HFX9 discs, but at the last minute found some NOS XT discs off of EBay. I've got the XTs on my other bike, and I can't imagine a brake system working better than these do (in my opinion anyways).
- Found the frame NOS from a bike shop in western Canada. $325 shipped. Its not my first choice (BB is too low), but it was cheap and in-stock.

All in all, I'm pleased with it. Its definitely more harsh than my other bike, but the 29 inch wheels are perfect and the harshness was something I expected. So far, I don't see any disadvantages to them whatsoever - only the advantages that I've read about here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
bigwheelboy_490 said:
Very nice looking build! ARe those the 4 piston XT brakes? Must really stop the bike quickly.
Yes, 4 piston model. Easy to setup, great modulation and power. Won an auction at $203 for them (they are NOS).
 

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Suicyco said:
Yes, 4 piston model. Easy to setup, great modulation and power. Won an auction at $203 for them (they are NOS).
Looks like you are limited in going any bigger on the rear rotor too. Did you have to face the adaptor much? I had to take about 2mm off to get my disc brake over far enough to not rub.
 

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Nice Bike!

Hey! Techno Pig! After seeing all of these beautiful mountains that I may never see, finally a trail I recognize! :D One that I rode on Sunday as a matta o' fact.

Great looking ride! I'm sure that setup will blaze the trails that we ride here locally. I think steel hardtail or hardtail with Thud is the way to go around here. Much faster and handles way quicker, at least in my humble opinion...

Enjoy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
bigwheelboy_490 said:
Looks like you are limited in going any bigger on the rear rotor too. Did you have to face the adaptor much? I had to take about 2mm off to get my disc brake over far enough to not rub.
A bigger rotor? In Florida? Don't think I'll be needing that :)
Didn't have to touch the adaptor, it required a couple of shims and was good to go.
 

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Wow, that's one very trick bike!
I love almost all on it. Just not the grips :) If you think the bike is harsh, a few good grips will make it better, as well as save weight. I now preach Dimension Cork grips. Thick, light, comfy, closed ends just like those you use. But I bet you put those on for a reason :)

It's true about the low BB. If you like speed and comfort, treat yourself on some Bontrager XR tires. They roll significantly faster, grip capably, and are a tad bigger than whatch got.

Happy trials, enjoy your ride, I'm sure you will,

J
 

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You're right!

New bike build posts are the best kind of posts, especially when it is your new bike :D
Nice bike, though I can't see why you would need more than one good gear, especially in Florida
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Beckman4 said:
Hey! Techno Pig! After seeing all of these beautiful mountains that I may never see, finally a trail I recognize!
Yeah, you never see our trails posted here ... I think we should post some pics of our alligator/snake/mosquito infested swamp trails so that the rest of the board can have a greater appreciation of their own trails :) Or maybe make them jealous with pics of Alafia, TOE, Santos. Another pic here ... no 29er content but its fun to look at pics right? This taken at TOE.

Hope to see you out there on a new KM soon (if you can find one that is!)
 

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