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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I've made a few small changes to my Spitty. I'll post a "before" and a few after pics to help you guys guess what the changes are.

Before:



And after:



So what are you guys thinking? New grips
New derailleur cable housing?
New tubes?

Mabey you need another pic?



Oh yea, it must be he new cable housing, huh?



Alright, to be truthfull, I did not get new grips.
I did however, want to get rid of the white paint. I bought a white spitty because it was the fastest way to get my hands on a frame my size. White was the last color choice I wanted, but an easy thing to correct down the road. Initially, I was going to get the frame repainted, and probably still will next winter. After I stripped it, i dikked around trying to figure out what I wanted to do, and finally decided to go for a somewhat polished look. This is NOT a raw frame! What you see represents hours of work. An endevour like this is not for the lazy.
And the other obvious change; the Elka. As far as I know, this is the first Elka stage 5 built for a Spitfire. How this came about is; I was actually looking for a coil shock for my 5 Spot . Mt Spitty had an MX-tuned fox shock from PUSH industries that I was quite content with, and, was totally okay with getting another one for the Spot. But I like to try new coil shocks, and the Elka was on that list, but it did not fit on the Spot [piggy back is too big/long]. So I looked into getting an Elka for the Spitty, and move the MX shock over to the 5 Spot [ same shock size and spring rate]. I contacted Yann At Elka [great guy], who once again reaffirmed that they had no info fron Banshee regarding the info needed to build an Elka for the Spitfire. He assured me he would obtain what was needed there. I immediately contacted Keith at Banshee, explained my desire, and he got all over it! :thumbsup: Two days later, Yann called me back and said they were ready to build my shock. BIG kudos to Keith and Yann!
So it's an easy bet you guys want to know what an Elka feels like on the Spitty. Sorry, but if you want real, long time, accurate comparisons and info, you're going to have to wait. I have very little trail time in on the shock. It's still winter here in Colorado, and I don't have in the miles. What I can tell you is: it has all the positive characteristics of a great coil shock like an MX tune, or and Avalanche Chubbie. I am still playing with the adjustments, and waiting for trail time. I will provide more feedback about the shock as time goes by.
Oh, and yea, I did also upgrade the bike with a flat handlebar, a 5 inch Gravity Dropper seatpost, a 30 tooth Andersen Machine middle chainring,and I did change the Lirik fork from a solo air to a coil sprung fork. The fork spring change matches the rear shock soooooooooooooooooooo much better, and the weight penalty is worth it. Weight is now a hefty 33 pounds, and I don't regret the porkiness. The ride is kickass.

 

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interested in the process you went through to strip the paint. care to elaborate? i have a white rune, the color kinda bites my ass, wouldn't mind giving raw/polished a try - the warranty's done anyway
 

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Looks awesome Rene!

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the Elka. I'm very very happy with mine. As much as I liked the Avy I owned, I'm not sure I would buy another shock that requires tools to make basic tuning adjustments. Elka seems like it's close to Avy level performance but cheaper and with knobs....
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
boomforeal said:
interested in the process you went through to strip the paint. care to elaborate? i have a white rune, the color kinda bites my ass, wouldn't mind giving raw/polished a try - the warranty's done anyway
I used a product known as aircraft stripper; it's available in most hardware stores. Tear your frame down completely, separating the two major pieces. Remove the bushings. You need to apply the product in a place that is no colder than 50 degrees F. It's pretty stinky and messy, so don't do this in your living room. Glop the product onto your frame; do not brush it on. It may take several applications to get all the paint off, especially those hard to get places.
I used three grades of steel wool, and Mother's aluminum and mag polish. I did not use any polishing rouge. It's not a mirror finish by a long shot, but somewhere in between that and raw. BTW, the elka tune for the spitty is MC20, MR20.
 

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Sweet ride my man!! I actually have an elka on the way to replace my manitou isx6 on my Rune. cant wait. It is gonna make my ride look really nice too!!
 

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Nice job Rene. The new finish alone must have taken you some time.

I know you had to do some minor filing work on the frame's front triangle to get the initial PUSHed MX tune coil shock in there. With the Elka had you not done any frame mod (filing or what not) would the Elka fit? Just based on the pics alone I might foresee additional problems when mounting a piggy bagged shock on medium and small Spitfire frames regardless or shock orientation. Please correct me if wrong.

Regardless, I'd love to hear how this development differs from the previous rear shock set up you had. :thumbsup:
 

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Renegade said:
I did change the Lirik fork from a solo air to a coil sprung fork. The fork spring change matches the rear shock soooooooooooooooooooo much better, and the weight penalty is worth it.
great work, looks awesome.:thumbsup:

but I am interested in the above quote. what steps did you take? looks like the same fork so you just switched out internals? did you get them from SRAM or..?
 

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Renegade said:
I used a product known as aircraft stripper; it's available in most hardware stores. Tear your frame down completely, separating the two major pieces. Remove the bushings. You need to apply the product in a place that is no colder than 50 degrees F. It's pretty stinky and messy, so don't do this in your living room. Glop the product onto your frame; do not brush it on. It may take several applications to get all the paint off, especially those hard to get places.
thank you sir! there's no beer icon so you'll have to settle for a :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Chromagftw said:
Nice job Rene. The new finish alone must have taken you some time.

I know you had to do some minor filing work on the frame's front triangle to get the initial PUSHed MX tune coil shock in there. With the Elka had you not done any frame mod (filing or what not) would the Elka fit? Just based on the pics alone I might foresee additional problems when mounting a piggy bagged shock on medium and small Spitfire frames regardless or shock orientation. Please correct me if wrong.

Regardless, I'd love to hear how this development differs from the previous rear shock set up you had. :thumbsup:
Chromag, perhaps you have me confused with someone else; I made no mods to my frame to fit any of the shocks I've had on this large frame. I know of one spitty owner with a small frame who had to file away at the front shock mount to get an x-fusion h3 in the frame, piggyback to the front.
Calhoun, you have to purchase, from your local bike shop [they will order for you] the correct spring for your weight, the base plate assembly [which is a short top out spring attached to a plate, goes underneath the spring] and the u-turn knob assembly [knob, springs, and detent balls.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The rockers have their own story. Initially, I wanted to paint the frame a green color, that did not go with the blue rockers at all. So I decided to strip them, initially with the idea of getting them anodized another color. That is when I noticed the M6 nut that is swaged/threadlocked/whatever into the left rocker. I really didn't want to try to remove it, and you can't ano aluminum with a piece of steel in it, so I decided to strip and polish them. This was all prior to striping the frame.
So I break out the can of easy-off oven cleaner, heavy duty version, which has lye as the active ingredient [sodium hydroxide]. It removes type 2 ano just fine; I've used it before. Something happened a little different this time; if I let the oven cleaner sit on the material a while, it deposited that charcoal grey color you see on the rockers. It would easily come off with steel wool or scotchbrite, and if I re-applied the easy-off, it would deposit that same coating, every time. So I decided to try that out as my "coating" for a while.
 

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Renegade said:
What you see represents hours of work. An endevour like this is not for the lazy.
Quoted for truth.

I wish you had told me that last year when I asked your advice on stripping and polishing a frame. :D It took probably around 30 hours of work altogether for a first timer (me) to strip completely and then polish my Intense M3, which I have since sold. The end result was well worth the time investment but I swore never to do that again.

The bike looks great! Very nice job and like everyone else I am looking forward to hearing your thoughts about the Elka. I will be running an Elka on a Yeti 303R-DH this season if I can get the rebound to behave to my satisfaction.
 

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So why the new handlebars? Aside from the obvious "I wanted it lower in front"...

Does this get you into a more laid-out climbing position or something? Are they wider? narrower?
 

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Niiiiiiice looking!

I'll be looking to see from you how the Anderson ring works later on. I've got a 31t for my single ring setup now. The 30t I have is for the granny spot, and works, but creates other chain-line/guide issues to work around.

OTOH, maybe I wouldn't even notice that 1 tooth difference! One ring works quite nicely for my present location and its lack of (sustained) vertical.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
-bb- said:
So why the new handlebars? Aside from the obvious "I wanted it lower in front"...

Does this get you into a more laid-out climbing position or something? Are they wider? narrower?
The handle bar is a Ritchey WCS Flat 10 D bar:


This bike begs to be ridden in the attack position, with emphasis on weighting the front. It improved the climbing some, but really improved the flat and descending, which was my prime motivation for getting those bars. The bars are 26 inches wide; that is as wide as I can ride in my neck of the woods [trees]. Same width as my older riser bars were. They have an unusual front/back bend, which I like, it feels like a 10mm extension on the stem length, without the "rudder effect".

https://www.universalcycles.com/shopping/large_image.php?id=31756

Scrub, thank you for the compliments.I have had the anderson ring since mid summer, and love it. It keeps me in the middle ring just a little bit longer. You know my local terrain: at my age/level of fitness, I still need the 22T granny.
The elka feels great. I have some initial impressions, but I want to get more saddle time in before I post real impressions. It is similar, AND different, from the PUSH'ed mx shock, none of the differences are bad. Just different.
In regards to the hours of polishing; yea, it takes time. As you get into the job, you get a sense of what it's gonna take to finish it. Fortunately for me, I have the time: a wife who can entertain herself, no kids, and I have no winter hobbies, but drinking beer, so I have the time for it!
 

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Renegade said:
Chromag, perhaps you have me confused with someone else; I made no mods to my frame to fit any of the shocks I've had on this large frame. I know of one spitty owner with a small frame who had to file away at the front shock mount to get an x-fusion h3 in the frame, piggyback to the front.
Calhoun, you have to purchase, from your local bike shop [they will order for you] the correct spring for your weight, the base plate assembly [which is a short top out spring attached to a plate, goes underneath the spring] and the u-turn knob assembly [knob, springs, and detent balls.
yeah that's me. i had to file a little on the inside of the front shock mount to prevent the xfusion h3 stanchion from rubbing the mounts when running in 'slack' mode. the steep setting was fine.

later i had to saw off a chunk to fit a fox rc4. steep mount was fine.


 
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