Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2009 Rockhopper Comp Disc, I am just wondering what are some of the first things people would recommend upgrading on the bike? I have already changed the pedals out for some SPD's, but wondering what else would be a worthwhile upgrade.

Thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
94 Posts
Light, gripy tires like Schwalbe Racing Ralph, Nobby Nic or Continental Mountain King are the best and cheapest way to tune your bike. Next would be a lighter, stiffer wheelset (DT hubs, Mavic rims?). I´m from Germany, so I don´t know with which forks the US models come in stock... but you might consider a upgrade. Most other parts differ more in weight and long term durability than in function. You might want to upgrade them when they´re worn...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The US Forks comes stock with a Rock Shox Dart 3. I have read that it is not a great fork, but at the moment upgrading the fork will be out of my budget. I think tires and wheels is a good place, and maybe the saddle. Later on I may upgrade the drive train parts slowly, as far as I know the brakes are pretty good, and certainly have been for the riding I have done so far.
 

·
LET'S GO RIDE BIKES!
Joined
·
233 Posts
I replaced my tires with a WTB Rajin in the back and a Mutano Raptor in the front and it made a huge difference over the stock tires.
I'll probably end up with new wheels and a fork at some point but everything else is fine for now.
Except for the tires and the fork I'm pretty stoked on the component group on my 09 RHC. This is my first MTB with disc brakes, they're pretty sick. Stoppies are so much easier now.
 

·
LET'S GO RIDE BIKES!
Joined
·
233 Posts
I love it!
Just for a little reference I started mountain biking in about '85 on a cheapo CyclePro. Then through the years as I progressed I went to a couple different Nishikis, a Ritchey Outback, a Ritchey Supercomp, a couple different Haro Extremes and a Gary Fisher Joshua.
Out of all those my Rockhopper Comp is by far the best ride. Yay technology and research and development.
I'm 6'5" tall @ 220lbs and I ride a 21.5" frame. It's a micro-tad too small but the 23" was way too big. I like a smaller frame because I love the technical single track stuff. I'll probably end up getting longer cranks for a little more legroom.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I love mine as well... I can't remember the last bike I had, but have never really owned a decent bike (usually ended up with used bikes from friends). I have not ridden for a few years, and only recently been able to afford a decent bike.

The disc brakes are great, really great. I remember riding back in the UK and anytime the rims would get wet it taking that much longer to stop. With the discs they stop quickly every time without fail.

I have a 19" frame, some days I feel like it may be a little small (I am 6'1") but when test riding it I was very comfortable, and with some tweaks (saddle height mostly) I have managed to get it even comfier. Now I am just trying to find some good local trails to ride on.
 

·
Fat-tired Roadie
Joined
·
18,453 Posts
Since you're on the second-best aluminum hardtail Specialized makes, and it's probably indistinguishable from the Stumpjumper HT if you were to strip the paint off of both of them, it would totally make sense, at least to me, to keep this thing for the rest of its life and keep upgrading as needed/desired. Assuming that a 26" aluminum hardtail with a 80-120mm fork is your platform of choice.

For me, contact points, between you and the bike and between the bike and the ground, are the first priorities. So +1 for good tires.

Having good bike fit is the single biggest upgrade you can ever make. Experiment with your spacer stack and stem position and think about a different stem and handlebar. If you're not happy with your saddle, get a new one. If your seatpost doesn't let you put your saddle in the right place, get a new one. I like bar ends a lot, so that's something else to consider. People might make fun of you, but whatever - if it's a riding position that's useful to you, there's really only one person you need to please.

I've got a nice fork on my Hardrock that I got on EBay. So you might also start watching EBay for things to show up.

Better front derailleur. Shimano Altus is pretty flexy. Going to an SLX on mine was a big improvement. SRAM shifters are supposed to be compatible with Shimano mountain FDs, but you might want to brand-match just for the sake of consistency. Or not.

Better crank. Mine's the same as yours, and the tread's too wide, which hurts my knees. It'll be replaced with an SLX when I'm less broke. You might also experiment with a different length crankset. At your height, you may be happier on something with longer arms.

You might consider going to nine-speed at some point. It will require new shifter pods and a new cassette and chain. It depends how sensitive to cadence you are. Hopefully, nine-speed components are about to get a lot cheaper, since SRAM's releasing their XX group.

Nicer wheels, maybe. If yours are the same rims as mine (looks like they are) and you're more of a cross-country guy, you'll probably be happier on lighter, narrower rims. Check the width - it's on a sticker on the rim. It's probably a 22mm rim? That's a quite a lot, and a 2.1" tire can sit a little oddly on something that big, in my experience.

My teammates highly recommend Shimano XT disc brakes. The BB5 will eat an entire pad set in an hour and a half if you're racing and it's muddy. Terrifying when it happens. If you only ride in nicer or moderately damp weather, you'll probably get over a year out of a set of brake pads, though.

Bikesnob has a joke about how eventually people feel the components are too good for the frame, get a new frame, and now have two bikes basically for the price of three. So try not to let the upgrade fever hit you too hard - try to limit yourself to tires and fit issues, and then replace things only as they break or wear out. Aside from the front derailleur, your bike's got a really solid spec.
 

·
cougarbait
Joined
·
1,783 Posts
the stock tires suck.. the knobs are so low that they are almost worthless. if you're an aggressive rider, you'll probably want a stronger wheelset. I would save for a fork next. the dart is pretty noodly and incompetent.

here's mine (temp front wheel)

only the rear brake lever and seat/seatpost are stock :lol:
 

·
Fat-tired Roadie
Joined
·
18,453 Posts
Lambdamaster said:
if you're an aggressive rider, you'll probably want a stronger wheelset. I would save for a fork next. the dart is pretty noodly and incompetent.
Did you manage to damage yours? Mine seem pretty bombproof.
 

·
Fat-tired Roadie
Joined
·
18,453 Posts
Have you hand-tensioned the wheels since getting them? They're machine-built, and likely to need a little TLC until everything beds in. I'm not sure what flatspotted means... Damage to the bead seat, or is the wheel a little out of round?

How much do you weigh? My experience is colored by my light weight - at 130 pounds, I can bunnyhop my road bike, and frequently do, without damaging it.
 

·
cougarbait
Joined
·
1,783 Posts
I have experience with every aspect of mountain bikes except wheels :lol:
I own a spoke wrench, but I don't know what to do with it. (any pointers?)
the rear wheel has a flat spot where it is out of round.

I weigh about 125.. but have taken them off 3ft drops onto concrete flats..

I now have a DT swiss rim on the rear (came with my pitch), and a Ritchey Z-comp on the front.
 

·
Fat-tired Roadie
Joined
·
18,453 Posts
Lambdamaster said:
I have experience with every aspect of mountain bikes except wheels :lol:
I own a spoke wrench, but I don't know what to do with it. (any pointers?)
the rear wheel has a flat spot where it is out of round.
The great Sheldon Brown has an article about truing. He describes it better than I would.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/tooltips/truing.html

Since this is a mountain bike wheel we're talking about, rim brakes may not be readily available in which case you really do need a truing stand. Also, if the wheel has dish, which is when the angles of the spokes don't match on the left and right sides of the hub, you can't tension both sides evenly or the rim will end up off center. If you're just truing the wheel, it doesn't really effect the way you need to approach it, but if you're tensioning it first, you probably want to do half a turn for the spokes with a smaller bracing angle and 3/8 or a quarter of a turn for the ones at a greater angle. My Hardrock's wheels had adequate tension when I bought it, but I don't know if that was Specialized or my LBS mechanics. Most mountain bike wheels have dish both front and rear because they have to have space for disc rotors. At least the rear wheels don't have as much dish as road wheels can. :p
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
AndrwSwitch said:
I like bar ends a lot, so that's something else to consider. People might make fun of you, but whatever - if it's a riding position that's useful to you
Hey, thanks for all the great information. That was a really helpful post :) I already added bar ends to my bike, I have always had them on previous bikes and do find them helpful. I was wondering why so few people have them now a days, any reason behind that?
 

·
Fat-tired Roadie
Joined
·
18,453 Posts
naiku said:
I was wondering why so few people have them now a days, any reason behind that?
I think it's fashion, mostly.

If you put bar ends on a utility bike and point them more upward than forward, they can act to reduce the drop and provide a more comfortable riding position. So tons of department store and utility bikes have them, and it makes them less attractive. Sort of a symbol of low status, I think. Tons of pros are riding with them, but not the whole field.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top