Restoring my MTB

Discussion in 'Chai' started by Chai, Oct 13, 2011.

  1. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    I wonder if there's any MTB fans around here... anyway I still decided to talk about it since these kind of information are hard to come by even on the bike forums.

    More than 15 years ago, I was a big fan of MTB (Mountain Bike). As a teenager back then, I did not have a lot of money. So I have only managed to upgrade some parts, like the Shimano Deore LX shifter and brake lever combo, cantilever brake. Back in those days, they are upper mid range components. The built quality is excellent. They lasted for more than 18 years!

    I have also upgrade the handle bar to lightweight stuff made by Control Tech.

    Ever since I got my driving license, my lonely bike was thrown aside ever since. But now I've decided to restore the bike! Fortunately, only the front and rear shifters, and the chain was in pretty bad shape. When I was trying to fix the rear shifter, I accidentally broke it when I overtighten one of the bolts and snapped... So time for ebay shopping!

    I bought some pretty nice components to replace my broken Deore LX shifters with a higher end Deore XT range (M770 series).

    These are some of the stuffs that I bought:
    Deore XT SL-M770 9sp shifter
    Deore XT Top Normal Rear Derailleur Shadow RD M772-SGS
    Shimano CN-HG73 LX 105 Bike Chain 9 speed
    Deore CS-HG61-9 Speed Cassette 11-32T
    Deore XT FD-M771 Front Derailleur Down Swing

    Because I'm still using the old Exage FH-HG50 7 speed rear hub, it would not fit all the 9 speed cassettes without modification. But thankfully, the 8 of the cassettes fit perfectly, and I have to recycle the 12T cassette locking tool taken from my old 7 speed cassette.

    After installing both new 9 speed cassettes, and the rear shifter, the bike can change finally change gears without hiccups!

    I have yet to replaced some of the parts, so I will wait patiently and replace them when they finally arrive. End of part 1...

    Attached Files:

  2. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member


    Glad to see you are getting back into biking. It's a great feeling!:D

    Looking forward to part two.

    Now you have to get a bike for strawroot!:)
  3. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Haha...I knew you are probably one of the only few that will reply this thread! I still remember you posted your BMX some where. :thumb:

    That's one of the reason why I decided to restore my bike, because we have a 'family' bike now.

    Nothing beats the fun doing it on your own, and it's pretty easy.

    Back to Part 2!

    Now it has 8 speed instead of the previous 7 speed. Here's a look at my spanking new cassettes! As you can see, the lock ring is recycled from my old one, so it's completely black, same goes for the chain! :haha: I'm still waiting for my chain tool to arrive so I can replace the chain, and together with front and rear derailleur.

    Next series of pictures show how I hack off the old broken shifter, leaving the brake lever which is still in perfect condition. It's really incredible how solid are these Japanese components after close to 20 years! The new Deore XT which I've just installed is an excellent shifter, solid Japanese quality. I can't wait to hack off the other shifter too!

    I have also bought some American made brake pads called Koolstop. It is still on the way from US I believe! I'm obsessed with US made brake pads. :haha: Just like the Hawk Performance brake pads which I bought for my car. I guess that will probably feature in Part 4.

    Part 3 will most likely be the installation of the front and rear derailleurs, using the same Deore XT M770 series. :mrgreen:

    Attached Files:

    1 person likes this.
  4. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    I heard about your project... You are really a DIY kinda guy! :thumb:

    I have an old bike gathering dust in my condo. The last time I tried to ride it... it squeaked a lot when I applied the brakes. Maybe you might want to refurbish it for me, eh? :wicked: :wicked :
  5. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Haha...squeaking is OK, but make sure the brake still works. The only thing you can do is to change the brake pads. I will have to see it first if those brake pads are still in production.
  6. The_YongGrand

    The_YongGrand Just Started

    I have a mountain bike bought back in 1996. I used it very often when I was schooling and going around the neighbourhood.

    Nowadays, with the driver's license, the bicycle is not much used. But, on times my father took it out for a cycle nearby if he is free. :)
  7. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Here comes the part 3. I have already installed the rear derailleur and the new chain. It works pretty well most of the time after fine tuning. The new derailleur is also much stiffer, less chain slapping on rough roads, and it is a clear improvement from my old Altus C10. The new derailleur is the "Shadow" series, a lower profile version which reduces the chance of knocking it accidentally.

    Front derailleur and the Kool Stop brake pads are here too. Should I install it now? :think: That will come in part 4!

    Attached Files:

  8. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member

    The place were it never snows... How's the build going?
  9. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Haha...I have actually installed the front derailleur and the front brake pads.

    I have also bought a new crankset, waiting to be installed. I will take some pictures and post it soon!

    I have been visiting a lot of off road trails for the past few weeks, and it is crazy fun!
  10. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    These are the most expensive components of all. The Deore XT M770 crankset. These are incredibly light compare to what I have on my bike now!

    I also bought the Crankskin stickers to protect the crank from heel rubbing. This will probably go on this weekend if I'm free. That will be the part 5!

    I will post part 4 and part 5 together later. :mrgreen:

    Attached Files:

  11. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member

    Wow, Awesome! They look expensive.:shock: How many MM are they?:think:
  12. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    175mm, I can't feel any difference with my old 170mm in terms of the length difference. But it is one of the best upgrade so far on my bike. Due to the much lighter gearing compare to my old crankset, I'm able to climb steep hill longer and harder.

    The new external bearing bottom bracket design is really great for muddy off road conditions as they are very well sealed.

    Unfortunately, I was too busy trying to realign the front derailleur, by the time it was done, the sky is too dark for photography... :haha: These are shots of the old bottom bracket removed. They are 68mm wide. The new bottom bracket supports 68mm and 73mm by using spacers. So even a bike as old as mine will work fine. And thankfully, my bike uses the normal British threads.

    The bike frame is really old and dirty. It deserves a new spray paint which I'm still deciding... I was thinking of spray red with white decal like the Specialized bike.

    The best amateur photography lives on Webshots

    Attached Files:

  13. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member

  14. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Ok ok... LOL! :haha:

    Been busy with work and I don't get to see sun light when I'm at home...

    This is how the brand new Deore XT FC-M770 175mm 22/33/44TT crankset looks like when installed. It has Steel/carbon composite construction on the middle 33T ring for more durable construction. The other rings are just normal aluminium to reduce weight. In the same picture, I also have the slightly used Deore XT FD-M771 front derailleur installed.

    As you can see in the second picture, the crankarms and the bottom bracket has literally no gap at all. So the mud and dirt has little chance to get in between them.

    And finally, the Koolstop Salmon brake pads, they are seriously as good as what most reviews said, they are one of the best rim brake pads in the market. It has no issue braking even on steeper trails, and it still works well when wet. I have tested it well when I was caught in the torrential rain few weeks ago.

    I guess this will conclude the part 4 and 5. There are still more to come, but they are still in planning stage. Maybe a new paintjob, or even a fork upgrade as the current one is useless on XC trails. Before I can confirm on these purchases as I will have to get them from ebay, I will post some pictures of the trails.

    Attached Files:

  15. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Some updates as promised before. These are some of the trails near my house. Some places are quite steep and it is really tricky to ride using my old bike. I fell on the 3rd pic below.

    Attached Files:

  16. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    I have started doing some major restoration. The bike is now fully stripped for respray. Here are some shots of before and inprogress.

    The first layer of anti rust. It wasn't perfect. So I sanded some uneven parts off, and respray again.

    Attached Files:

  17. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    After some torturous rides on those tricky trails, the bike is starting to fall apart. Pedals are becoming loose, the saddle started cracking.

    So I bought these:
    WTB Silverado Team Saddle
    Shimano PD-MX30 platform pedal

    Attached Files:

  18. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member

    Yeah, I just stared at that pic for a while. Looks pretty much like a no-win scenario...:lol:
  19. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member

    Man! You have got some good resto skills!:thumb:

    To bad we live so far apart.:doh: Sure would be fun to go riding with you.:)
  20. Trinity

    Trinity Little Kiki Staff Member

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