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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2003 Specialized Epic Comp that was purchased only 6 months ago from a bike shop here in Australia that went broke. I have not ridden the bike much since purchase but intend getting into it in the new year. The bike I feel is let down by it's mix of components particularly the ES-30 Bottom bracket and Stongarm Cranks.

It is my intention to upgrade the BB to Shimano ES-71 BB and the Strongarm Cranks to Shimano XT FD-M750 Crankset. I will probably ditch the LX Front Derailleur for an XT.

I have read conflicting reviews about these items so any advice on the suitability of this intended upgrade would be greatly appreciated as I purchase from the USA due to the [email protected]$#% prices here in Australia so returning them if not suitable is a major pain. Also with regard to the Front Derailleur would you leave the LX on or go for the XT.

My riding initially will be restricted to street/cycle paths and some trails consisting of mainly hard packed dirt.

Cheers and have an outstanding new year!!

Mullos.
 

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Old man on a bike
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Cranks and bb have almost no effect on performance. If you actually have a bad bb just replace that. Otherwise use these components until they're actually not performing.

Likewise with a front derailleur, as long as it functions it makes little difference both performance wise and weight wise.

Save your money for real upgrades as needed, that is when something breaks/fails or performs poorly. Use your money for better gear to use with the bike (good shorts, jersey, gloves, helmet, tools, etc.). Ride the heck out that bike and make yourself a better machine before putting more money into the bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Blame it on the missus!!

Bikinfoolferlife said:
Cranks and bb have almost no effect on performance. If you actually have a bad bb just replace that. Otherwise use these components until they're actually not performing.

Likewise with a front derailleur, as long as it functions it makes little difference both performance wise and weight wise.

Save your money for real upgrades as needed, that is when something breaks/fails or performs poorly. Use your money for better gear to use with the bike (good shorts, jersey, gloves, helmet, tools, etc.). Ride the heck out that bike and make yourself a better machine before putting more money into the bike.
Yeah, your probably right - I guess I'm a classic example of the saying " A fool and his money are soon departed" - I'm a little compulsive when it comes to shopping - I'm never going shopping with the missus again!!
 

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..probably out riding..
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Once you wear that stuff out, I think it's a good upgrade to do. The xt cranks are great, just make sure you install them tight enough or they creak like heck and would wear out quick. xt is a good front derail... more solid than lx, but I ran an lx up front for probably 8000 miles at one time in the past, so no complaints.
 

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I'm trying to encourage you to spend money but don't underestimate the difference the unexciting parts make - like grips for instance. I think the cushy dual density grips are the best! Thankfully they're pretty cheap to boot!

Another thing that really changes the way a bike feels are the tires. Although I run the same set all the time - IRC Trailbears in 2.25 - it's fun to try out different treads from time to time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
HillbillyBiker said:
Once you wear that stuff out, I think it's a good upgrade to do. The xt cranks are great, just make sure you install them tight enough or they creak like heck and would wear out quick. xt is a good front derail... more solid than lx, but I ran an lx up front for probably 8000 miles at one time in the past, so no complaints.
Your dead right mate - The cranks I have are a long way from worn but I figured the prices at JensonUSA wont last, not to mention the cranks selling out so I took the plunge and ordered the parts - saved a bundle - some bike shops here in Oz are still selling that crankset for around $300.00 AUD!! Got them at Jenson for $89.00 USD - this online shop is the business!!

A bit of forward planning on parts I'm afraid but prices here in Oz are so high a little forward planning and bargain hunting on overseas sites pays off big time in terms of savings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Shawn595 said:
I'm trying to encourage you to spend money but don't underestimate the difference the unexciting parts make - like grips for instance. I think the cushy dual density grips are the best! Thankfully they're pretty cheap to boot!

Another thing that really changes the way a bike feels are the tires. Although I run the same set all the time - IRC Trailbears in 2.25 - it's fun to try out different treads from time to time.
Mate I think you are reading my mind as I've been looking at grips for the last day!! I have narrowed them down to 2 - see pics.

I do a fair bit of street and cycle path riding so I got the Maxxis Holy Roller tyres (26x22.40) and these tyres are sensational, high rolling speeds, quiet and still offer a fair bit of grip on trails - an excellent all rounder I reckon.
 

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Mullos said:
Your dead right mate - The cranks I have are a long way from worn but I figured the prices at JensonUSA wont last so not to mention the cranks selling out so I took the plunge and ordered the parts - saved a bundle - some bike shops here in Oz are still selling that crankset for around $300.00 AUD!! Got them at Jenson for $89.00 USD - this online shop is the business!!

A bit of forward planning on parts I'm afraid!!
Nice, I run those same cranks for the last few months. Jenson had them for $109 which I paid and though it was a good deal, then I saw they went down to $89 and I ordered a backup set, can't beat that deal for a solid set of cranks. Just tighten them real tight, I had an issue with mine at first, all because I didn't tighten them down enough. I tightened them to where I would for my old square tapers but this was not enough for this crank setup. I use a foot or foot and a half long pipe on the allen wrench to get enough torque and it works great.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Shawn595 said:
Well I hate to rain on your parade but I don't care for lock on grips at all. Sorry, but I generally grip the bar around the ends and the round locks feel really weird in my hand.

If this isn't a problem for you then by all means give them a try. New grips are one of cycling's simple pleasures. :)
Mate, not only are you reading my mind but it's just started to rain here!!
 

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Mullos said:
Mate I think you are reading my mind as I've been looking at grips for the last day!! I have narrowed them down to 2 - see pics.

I do a fair bit of street and cycle path riding so I got the Maxxis Holy Roller tyres (26x22.40) and these tyres are sensational, high rolling speeds, quiet and still offer a fair bit of grip on trails - an excellent all rounder I reckon.
Well I hate to rain on your parade but I don't care for lock on grips at all. Sorry, but I generally grip the bar around the ends and the round locks feel really weird in my hand.

If this isn't a problem for you then by all means give them a try. New grips are one of cycling's simple pleasures. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
HillbillyBiker said:
Nice, I run those same cranks for the last few months. Jenson had them for $109 which I paid and though it was a good deal, then I saw they went down to $89 and I ordered a backup set, can't beat that deal for a solid set of cranks. Just tighten them real tight, I had an issue with mine at first, all because I didn't tighten them down enough. I tightened them to where I would for my old square tapers but this was not enough for this crank setup. I use a foot or foot and a half long pipe on the allen wrench to get enough torque and it works great.
In addition to those cranks I had to order additional parts as well to offset cost of shipping. Got a Shimano ES71 BB, XT Front Derailleur ($19.95 USD!!) and a Sram PC991 chain and a couple of xtra powerlinks - if I purchased that crankset here it would have cost close to $300.00 AUD but got all this including cranks for $300.00 AUD landed including Fedex International Priority Shipping which takes around 5 working days.
 
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