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Re: [rootsradicals] Smorris' Xtracycle blog, build, and questions

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  • Rick | Xtracycle, Inc
    Welcome to the Radical Patch, Steve! ... Rick ... -- graphic structuralist | rick@xtracycle.com 888 537 1401 x709 | the original longtail company
    Message 1 of 45 , Sep 3, 2009
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      Welcome to the Radical Patch, Steve!



      On Thu, Sep 3, 2009 at 7:10 PM, argecko <Steve@...> wrote:

      Hi gang!

      New guy here from 25 miles west of Cleveland

      Well, Sunday (8/30) I bought a used mountain bike from craigslist, and later that evening ordered the Xtracycle kit.

      The Bike:

      I bought a used KHS True Temper steel mountain bike. Best I can narrow it down, it is a 1997 KHS Summit X, based on BikePedia. There are several differences, but nothing else that I've found comes close. I posted a query for ID in BikeForums' and MTBR's forums, but never was sure. I'm going to write KHS and see if they can figure it out. It isn't really important, but I'm anal about details, so I'd like to know. Here's a link to my smugmug gallery for the bike as I bought it.


      What I do know:

      KHS Summit 17" frame
      True Temper AVR ChroMoly double butted tube set with "DeltaLinear Downtube"
      Rock Shock Indy C suspension fork
      Dia-Compe VersaControl 737 V-brakes
      Dia-Compe 7EXA PowerControl brake levers
      DiaTech headset
      Un-marked stem (with DiaTech plug), handlebars, seatpost and seatpost clamp.
      "Brooks" Taiwanese padded saddle
      Shimano STX-rc rear derailleur
      Shimano "A" front derailleur
      Sachs twist shifters
      STX-rc 8 rear hub
      Un-marked front hub
      SR Powerflo Front PF-F crankset
      Alex AL-MP 19 rims with Panaracer Duster II R 26X2.10 tires
      Un-marked pedals

      So that kinda matches up with the BikePedia listing for the 1997 Summit-X. If anyone knows about KHS bikes, please look through these and confirm my guess or suggest something different?

      This bike looks practically brand new, with the mold marks still on the tire lugs and barely any markings on the rim sidewalls. The guy said all he did with it was use it for riding around his neighborhood with the kids.

      Pieces Parts:

      On Sunday evening, I ordered the Xtracycle FreeRadical, Longtail Kit, Footsies, and Magic Carpet from Bike Trailer Shop. According to the tracking number, it won't be here until Tuesday due to a busy spurt at BTS. While I'm glad business is picking up for retailers, I'm a little disappointed not to get it before the long holiday weekend.

      I've had an ongoing email discussion as to whether the Surly 1X1 rigid fork would be the correct size to swap in in place of my Rock Shox Indy C. Today we determined that it is almost the perfect size, only 1mm off on rake, and 7mm off on axle-to-crown measurement with the fork compressed about half of its 2" stroke. That's less than 1/3 degree change in effective head tube angle. Soon after finalizing that, a new fork got added to my birthday list for the kids to give me in a couple of weeks.

      Based on discussions on BikeForums:Utility Bikes and in the Flickr Xtracycle group, I ordered a pair of Schwalbe Big Apple tires in 50-559 (26X2.0) from Wallingford Bicycle Parts. They should be here Friday. I'm already having second thoughts as to whether I should have ordered the 60-559 (26X2.35) size. Thoughts?

      During an experiment swapping handlebars on my Bridgestone RB-T, I ended up with a left over set of Nitto Albatross bars. I may give those a try on my Xtracycle. If I do, I'll change from the twist grip shifter to a set of cork grips and a trigger shifter. I've never had a mountain bike before, and don't really know too much about the different shifters. On the bikes I've tried, I like the push one lever/pull another better than the indexed thumb shifter or two triggers that you push both. From what I've read, 8-speed shifters are not that easy to come by any more. The LBS has a Shimano Alivio SL-M410, but the reviews are not that stellar on them, with many reports of breakage. Anyone have a better, medium cost suggestion?

      That's about where I am today. I'm getting a couple of water bottle cages, I'll get some cam straps, bungies, etc to hold things on. I'm contemplating getting a better headset when I replace the fork. This one just has a collar clamp, and no good way to move spacers top to bottom to adjust the handlebar height.

      Thanks for following along. This post sorta got long. Feel free to comment as this thread continues, and if anyone has answers or suggestions on the questions above, I'd appreciate the input. There will be photos and more comments or questions added as I go along.


      graphic structuralist | rick@...
      888 537 1401 x709 | the original longtail company
    • Bill Bonney
      That s a good point you make. I m not sure that the length on the fork is as significant as just removing suspension. The extra leverage from the increased
      Message 45 of 45 , Sep 19, 2009
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        That's a good point you make. I'm not sure that the length on the fork is as significant as just removing suspension. The extra leverage from the increased wheel base must effect the balance of the suspension fork. Wold be nice to experiment with stronger springs in the suspension fork. But for simplicity, the rigid fork is the easy way to go

        On 2009-09-19, at 16:50 , Smorris wrote:


        I'm impatient, and couldn't wait until my friend returns. I temporarily put the new fork on today using the old bearings and cups, and a second stem to take up space on the long steerer tube. (The KHS has the Diatech style headset that has a conical pinch bolt that clamps up against the bottom of the stem or spacers instead of an Aheadset style clamp.) Wow, does that make a difference! Much more nimble and lighter feeling steering. It feels like a completely different bike. At fist I was disappointed with the Xtracycle, because it made a fun mountain bike feel heavy and sluggish. That's all gone now. What a drastic improvement!

        I've put three work in progress photos at the end of the "Xtracycle Build" gallery here to show what it looks like now.

        http://smorris. smugmug.com/ Leaning-Against- the-Wall/ Xtracycle- Build/9568253_ heqyV#P-2- 28

        --- In rootsradicals@ yahoogroups. com, "Smorris" <Steve@...> wrote:

        > Today I got the Footies and Magic Carpet from my daughter and a Surly 1X1 fork from my brother for my birthday. I don't know what the other brother is getting, but Wideloaders were on the birthday/Christmas list.
        > So of course I had to get goodies to go along with it. I ordered a Ritchey Scuzzy Logic headset and a Reynolds spacer kit. Plus I got a couple spare tubes for the Xtracycle and my RB-T, since I didn't have any. While I was at it, I ordered a custom 13-32 cassette with gear ratio increments more to my liking.
        > Now I should be done for a while... :)

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