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Gettin' A SS . . . I Can Already Feel The Pain

Old_Dude

Monkey
But the anticipation of pain is because I'm so outta shape (ha).

I'm looking at a Karate Monkey & I'll prolly have Mean Todd build me one within budget - but I'd like any suggestions for components, tires, et cetera. I'd really like discs - are Deore discs okay - they're so inexpensive - I can understand getting XT, or better for components, but brakes? It seems like besides the weight issue, anything that'll clamp down on a rotor will be suitable. Would Deore discs be okay?

I was delighted to find out one of my coworkers only rides SS - he's got three and well, I've always wanted to do this, so, here goes!

Thanks,

OD
 

Angus

Jack Ass Pen Goo Win
Oct 15, 2004
1,478
0
South Bend
Good for you! you will love the Karate Monkey, I have been riding me KM for two years now and I love it so much I sold all my 26" bikes(Klein Adroit & KHS Solo One).
I have Avid Mech Disc's on my bike and I think they are worth every penny. I also run Jones H-Bars and would'nt trade those out either. The KM is really a well rounded bike, when I first got mine I lived in the Prairies west of Chicago, it was flat great spinning on a SS. Since feb. I have been living in Arkansas. I live between 2 mountain ranges, at first I was suffering and for a brief moment I contemplated going back to gears, but instead I lowered my gearing to 34/20 till I got my mountain legs, now I am back running 34/18.,
OD I don't know how old you are but I am turning 40 in the next 30 days and I really feel as SS'ing has made me feel younger, and I enjoy riding more than ever.

P.S. If you click on the Flying Munkee below you'll see my KM in action
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
OD I don't know how old you are but I am turning 40 in the next 30 days and I really feel as SS'ing has made me feel younger, and I enjoy riding more than ever.
I'm gonna be 47 in October and I really need a kick in the pants to get back into shape. Fortunately, I have a nice variety of rides in this area - many miles of flat stuff (to start out with) and then "small mountains" - we're in the foothills of the North Georgia area, so our mountains are really just hills, I guess.

I will get the bar you suggested - anything else?

Thanks,

OD
 

Angus

Jack Ass Pen Goo Win
Oct 15, 2004
1,478
0
South Bend
North geargia is some good riding, I have some in laws there near Lake Lanear (or whatever it's called). When building a SS remember the Drive train though simplified has more stress on it than a geared bike, I Chewed up a RaceFace Chain Ring in less than a year from all the torque, I switched over to a stainless steel ring from Surly and haven't had any wear problems to date.
 

Angus

Jack Ass Pen Goo Win
Oct 15, 2004
1,478
0
South Bend
BikeGeek said:
Because it's fun. The trails seem so much more alive when riding rigid.
Can I get an Amen! I have been an active rider since my BMX days in the late 70's and I feel my riding enjoyment and level of skill has definitely risen a notch going rigid!
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
WHOA - sticker shock!!

I saw a complete SS for sale for $850 (the UK brand, I think), so, I was thinking I could get something similar or a bit more. But wow, the one spec'd out was $1300 w/shipping & pedals.

I think I should consider getting this project "in pieces" - frame, BB & headset for now & maybe add the other components later.

Sometimes I hate understanding why quality components are so desirable.

(sigh)
 

Angus

Jack Ass Pen Goo Win
Oct 15, 2004
1,478
0
South Bend
There have been several reports of people buying a Gary Fisher "Rig" only to swap frames and put the aluminum frame on Ebay.....
 

ito

Mr. Schwinn Effing Armstrong
Oct 3, 2003
1,709
0
Avoiding the nine to five
My build on the KM

Surly New Hubs(flip flop rear for fixie action)
-don't bother with discs, too heavy and on a fully rigid SS you won't be going fast enough to use them
Alex Adventurer Rims
-inexpensive, somewhat heavy duty, build up strong
King Headset
-Duh!
Race Face System Stem
-Cheap, stiff, whatever, it works
Wide handlebar with a 12 degree sweep-
-I love my Answer Pro-taper, it is ano gold and blings out the bike nicely
Truvativ Stylo SS crank and bottom bracket
-I hate isis, but it is strong. Put up with the squeaks and you won't care. Or pay some extra money and get an XT or LX octalink
Thompson Seat post
Saddle of your choice
WTB tires-Nanoraptor rear, mutano front
Crank brothers pedals(eggbeaters or candy)
-love my eggbeaters, they rock!
Avid SD3 brakes
-cheap, solid avid braking power, no squealing
Sram SS chain
ACS or Shimano freewheel

I have this bike and built it up for around $600 via used parts online, bike shop deals, and some trades with friends. It has been going strong for well over 2 years with more miles than I can count on it.

The Ito
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
The other bike I was referring to for $850 was the On-One Inbred SS Complete at one of the places that advertises here. For $850, I think that's a pretty nice deal, but, I really wanna get a KM w/29's and blah, blah, blah. I think I'll get Webcyclery to send me a black KM w/BB & headset installed.

Not that I couldn't install those bits meself but . . . why not get the experts to do what experts do right?

Right?

Thanks everyone - I'll keep ya'll posted on the progress of this build. My birthday is 29-Oct & I'm hoping to have it done by then.

Happy riding,

OD
 

BikeGeek

BrewMonkey
Jul 2, 2001
4,424
72
Hershey, PA
Old_Dude said:
The other bike I was referring to for $850 was the On-One Inbred SS Complete at one of the places that advertises here. For $850, I think that's a pretty nice deal, but, I really wanna get a KM w/29's and blah, blah, blah. I think I'll get Webcyclery to send me a black KM w/BB & headset installed.
Ask about the On-One 29er frames he just got in. :)
[fingerscrossed]I should be placing my order in another week or two.[/fingerscrossed]

If you decide to go with the KM, you might as well get him chase the bb and hanger threads before sending. Surly frames don't come very "clean."
 

Angus

Jack Ass Pen Goo Win
Oct 15, 2004
1,478
0
South Bend
ito said:
My build on the KM

Surly New Hubs(flip flop rear for fixie action)
-don't bother with discs, too heavy and on a fully rigid SS you won't be going fast enough to use them
The Ito
Whoa! what does that mean? SSer's are slow? I am often coming down fire roads on my Monkey at speeds 35-40 mph and can get upwards of 20 mph on singletrack, plus I guarantee that OD has wetter trails than you, especially in the spring, so I say O contrare monfrare and go with some discs.......
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
. . . so I say O contrare monfrare and go with some discs.......
Yeah, plus, I've been known to go through a few puddles and creeks - I used to have discs - the weight isn't a big deal for me - I prefer the stopping power and less wear on the rims. The worst part is riding rim brakes after discs - after going through puddles or creeks and then not being able to stop quick - hitting trees, going off trails, et cetera - yipes!
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
If you decide to go with the KM, you might as well get him chase the bb and hanger threads before sending. Surly frames don't come very "clean."
Is Webcyclery going to do me right? I mean, are they experts or are they just order takers? Can they answer my questions about fit, & other stuff? So, far the response has been good - thorough answers in a timely manner. Of course, they advertise here, so, I'd like to support them. If only they can deliver the goods with a smidgeon of customer assistance, I'll be happy - I'm sure they will.

I'm really fuzzy about some of the exact components. This will all be good in the end. I'm enjoying learning more about this endeavor as I go - the enthusiasm is growing.

Would it be better to start out with a couple of rear cogs? I absolutely must have a SRAM chain - super easy to remove & clean & reinstall.

Happy ridin',

OD
 

BikeGeek

BrewMonkey
Jul 2, 2001
4,424
72
Hershey, PA
Old_Dude said:
Is Webcyclery going to do me right? I mean, are they experts or are they just order takers? Can they answer my questions about fit, & other stuff? So, far the response has been good - thorough answers in a timely manner. Of course, they advertise here, so, I'd like to support them. If only they can deliver the goods with a smidgeon of customer assistance, I'll be happy - I'm sure they will.
I've only bought parts from them, but every experience has been top notch. Send a PM to BeerDemon (aka the member formerly known as Ridemonkey) or Heidi, they're both in Bend and could possibly address you questions.
 

Meat Foot

Monkey
Mar 24, 2004
269
0
On the asthenosphere
Old_Dude said:
WHOA - sticker shock!!

I saw a complete SS for sale for $850 (the UK brand, I think), so, I was thinking I could get something similar or a bit more. But wow, the one spec'd out was $1300 w/shipping & pedals.

I think I should consider getting this project "in pieces" - frame, BB & headset for now & maybe add the other components later.

Sometimes I hate understanding why quality components are so desirable.

(sigh)
Also don't rule out good slightly used components. I scored a set of xt cranks, rings, and BB for $75. They have 300 miles on them, and they are octalink. So while not new, they will suffice plus they start taking the weight off the bike. I am a little bit of a weight weenie. So, I am going to v. 2.0 of my current SS. Need some cranks? He he he.
 

ito

Mr. Schwinn Effing Armstrong
Oct 3, 2003
1,709
0
Avoiding the nine to five
riderx said:
Maybe you are too slow to need them, but not everyone is...
Bahahaha! I'll just let that comment stand until I see you ride, but I highly doubt you'd find me slow.

And no I was not saying SS's aren't fast, I'm saying they aren't as fast or as heavy as a fully geared and fully suspended mountain bike. Meaning they don't need the extra power of a disc brake.

If you want to spend the extra money for some crappy mechanical discs then go for it. The shimanos can be set up well, but they tend to warp easily and are a PIA as time goes on. If you do go mechanical discs go with a set of avids. Anything else is going to be a waste of time if you are putting in serious miles. i would suggest a good rim brake though.

If you are seriously burning through rims that fast or have really wet trails then sure go for discs, but if you want to save some money, weight, and a headache in setup time then throw some rim brakes on the bike and be done with it.

As for webcyclery, they seem to know their stuff very well. They can definitely help you out with parts.

Are you going for a free wheel or cassette style hub? I'd suggest a cassette style SS hub and several cassette freewheels(easier to get parts for, just make sure to grease the threads well). I normally run a 32-16 for everything, though for Nationals at mammoth I was running a 32-20....one steep climb and high elevation.

And yes on the SRAM chain. Make sure to keep the extra links in case you need to add some for a bigger cog. Having two of those magic joiner links is helpful as well.

The Ito
 

riderx

Monkey
Aug 14, 2001
704
0
Fredrock
ito said:
And no I was not saying SS's aren't fast, I'm saying they aren't as fast or as heavy as a fully geared and fully suspended mountain bike. Meaning they don't need the extra power of a disc brake.
Your bike doesn't need to be fully geared or heavy to go fast and benefit from disc brakes (just an FYI, I only run one on the front). Hell, disc brakes can help you go faster because you can wait longer to brake (decreased stopping distance).

ito said:
you want to save some money, weight, and a headache in setup time then throw some rim brakes on the bike and be done with it.
Money - well, I'll give you that one
Weight - nope. I run Hope hydros (with a Hope hub) that winds up being right around the same as V's.
Setup time - more for V's. Out of the box and on the bike with both Hopes I've had. Never need to adjust for wear. Replace V brake pads at least 4 times as often (probably a lot more but I'm not keeping a tally). In short, if you want less maintenance and setup, Go disc.
 

ito

Mr. Schwinn Effing Armstrong
Oct 3, 2003
1,709
0
Avoiding the nine to five
riderx said:
Money - well, I'll give you that one
Weight - nope. I run Hope hydros (with a Hope hub) that winds up being right around the same as V's.
Setup time - more for V's. Out of the box and on the bike with both Hopes I've had. Never need to adjust for wear. Replace V brake pads at least 4 times as often (probably a lot more but I'm not keeping a tally). In short, if you want less maintenance and setup, Go disc.
Comparing hope minis to deore mechanicals isn't even a close comparison. If I had the money I might go with a set of those, but a disc wheelset and those brakes would cost about the same or more than my bike as it is.

I guess we'll agree to disagree. I'll keep running v's and suggesting others do the same. Maybe one day we can duke it out on the trail and get an answer to this pressing question :mumble: ;)

The Ito
 

riderx

Monkey
Aug 14, 2001
704
0
Fredrock
ito said:
Comparing hope minis to deore mechanicals isn't even a close comparison. If I had the money I might go with a set of those, but a disc wheelset and those brakes would cost about the same or more than my bike as it is.

I guess we'll agree to disagree. I'll keep running v's and suggesting others do the same. Maybe one day we can duke it out on the trail and get an answer to this pressing question :mumble: ;)

The Ito
I never compared Deore to Hopes, you made some sweeping statements about disc brakes and I refuted them. As far as cost, A Hope mini runs around $150 and I paid a bank breaking $44 for the Hope hub, so we aren't really talking about a blingle-speed set up here, especially when you only run it on one wheel.

Run V's if you want, no problems here. I'm just trying to put the facts on the table for OD to make his decision. And if you ever make if to the MD/DC area, drop a line and we'll do a brake shoot out. :D

-don't bother with discs, too heavy and on a fully rigid SS you won't be going fast enough to use them
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
MunkeeHucker - I couldn't get the link to work.

Yeah, the more I look at the $900 complete SS from Webcyclery compared to the $1300 for the KM w/discs I think I should just go with the less expensive rig and get on with my life. Maybe a compromise would be in order - like the KM w/v-brakes? The 29 inch disc hubbed wheelset offered by Webcyclery has machined rims, so this would save me a little to begin with - always easy to upgrade to discs later, I guess.

Sorry for thinking out loud.

Thanks for the comments.
 

BikeGeek

BrewMonkey
Jul 2, 2001
4,424
72
Hershey, PA
Old_Dude said:
Yeah, the more I look at the $900 complete SS from Webcyclery compared to the $1300 for the KM w/discs I think I should just go with the less expensive rig and get on with my life. Maybe a compromise would be in order - like the KM w/v-brakes? The 29 inch disc hubbed wheelset offered by Webcyclery has machined rims, so this would save me a little to begin with - always easy to upgrade to discs later, I guess.
If you're really interested in the 29er, ask Mean Todd what a similar build as the $850 On-One SS you mentioned, but using the On-One 29er frame he just got in instead would run. Actually, I'm curious myself, I may send him a email.
 

riderx

Monkey
Aug 14, 2001
704
0
Fredrock
OD - what size Monkey are you looking for? There's a couple in the MTBR classifieds. With a little looking you should be able to find a complete one in your budget.
 

ito

Mr. Schwinn Effing Armstrong
Oct 3, 2003
1,709
0
Avoiding the nine to five
Old_Dude said:
MunkeeHucker - I couldn't get the link to work.

Yeah, the more I look at the $900 complete SS from Webcyclery compared to the $1300 for the KM w/discs I think I should just go with the less expensive rig and get on with my life. Maybe a compromise would be in order - like the KM w/v-brakes? The 29 inch disc hubbed wheelset offered by Webcyclery has machined rims, so this would save me a little to begin with - always easy to upgrade to discs later, I guess.

Sorry for thinking out loud.

Thanks for the comments.
I'd say the 29er is worth checking out, especially if you throw in some discs hubs. It would make for an easy upgrade down the trail.

For a rigid singlespeed 29 inch wheels just seems to be te way to go. Smoother riding and the bigger wheels are fun, though not as easy to jump with.

The Ito
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
It's a done deal - I'm going ahead with KM w/the disc hubs & will have upgrade to dics later - prolly get Avid's.

Budget, schmudget - I'm saving a life - money is irrelevant.

I told my son last night there never has been - nor will there ever be a more efficient & practical machine than a bicycle. Even if that wasn't true, they're still a whole bunch of fun, so, who cares - get one, ride it, be happy.

Thanks folks - I'll keep you updated as things progress. I sure did get some really phantastic pre-sale service from Webcyclery.

Let's go ridin',

OD
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
These components are specified/recommended by the salesman - any suggestions for alternates?

Tektro 311A brake levers and 920AL linear pull brakes
FSA Platinum bb
Truvativ SS crank
Shimano FW
Surly disc hubs laced to Salsa Delgado rims with 14g silver spokes and brass nipples
WTB ExiWolf tires and WTB tubes
SRAM PC58 chain
Ritchey Headset and stem
Easton EA50 bar
Kalloy seatpost
WTB saddle
Shimano 520 pedals (my suggestion)

In addition to adding two bottle cages & some spare tubes, what else will I need?

Thanks,

OD
 

ito

Mr. Schwinn Effing Armstrong
Oct 3, 2003
1,709
0
Avoiding the nine to five
Old_Dude said:
These components are specified/recommended by the salesman - any suggestions for alternates?

Tektro 311A brake levers and 920AL linear pull brakes
WTB ExiWolf tires and WTB tubes
Kalloy seatpost


In addition to adding two bottle cages & some spare tubes, what else will I need?

Thanks,

OD
I would go with something a bit nicer than the Tektro brakes. I'm picking up some Cane Creek Direct Curves that are pretty sweet. At the very least go for some nice levers so you don't need to upgrade them when you go disc.
Exiwolf tires are heavy. I would go 2.1 if you want the bike for general trail riding. Bontrager tires are looking nice, but WTB is were it is at.
Thompson post or perhaps one of the new Bontrager posts(best seat post head out there).

Looks like a nice build. Only thing I would for sure change is the Exiwolfs. They are really too big to ride as an everyday tire, unless it is really rough terrain I'd go smaller.

The Ito
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
Thanks Ito, I'll upgrade the brakes. I personally like the larger footprint - albeit a heavier tire. The tradeoff, in this case, is worth it to me - good advice nevertheless.

Anyone have any opinions about the grips that don't twist off? I've never used them but am willing if they're good.

Thanks!!!
 

riderx

Monkey
Aug 14, 2001
704
0
Fredrock
I'd recommend a set of Avid S5 brakes - good balance of value/cost. Get a set of Avid Speed Dial levers to match. THE best lever IMO.

As far as tires, the Exiwolfs are good because they are the fattest you can get, but they are far from perfect. Up front they work pretty good, in the rear reverse the tread if you want better traction grunting up the steep stuff. Even so, I wish they had wider spaced knobs. The rear wears fast for me since I do a lot of climbing in rocky conditions. Still, I run them because I like the big meat. There is supposed to be a kevlar version either out or coming out soon, so you can save a bit of weight there.

Grips: ODI lock-ons.
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
Still, I run them because I like the big meat.
I think as 29'ers catch on that more & more tire choices will be available. The more I look into 29 inch wheels the more it makes sense for all bikes to use this size. Personally, I think the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages.

I'll get the ODI lock-ons along with the Avid S5's & Speed Dial levers - thanks for the suggestions.

I hope I don't have a heart attack riding this thing - but, I can't think of a better way to go if that happens.

Happy riding,

OD
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
I just did ~17 miles on my road bike with just one gear. I know it'll be different with a mountain bike, but I really enjoyed the ride.

I can't wait for this thing to arrive.

Thanks everyone for your comments & suggestions - photos will be posted as soon as I get the ride - hopefully, in less than two weeks as the dealer is waiting for parts and it's going to be shipped from Oregon to Georgia.

Happy riding,

OD
:)
 

Old_Dude

Monkey
It shipped today - woo hoo!!!

It's coming across country, so I prolly won't get it for 8 days. I've waited so long for this bike, the suspense is sort of killing me, but that's okay.

I will tell everyone again, MeanTodd at Webcyclery went way over & above the call of duty on this sale. Poor guy, he must've spent three hours reading and replying to my emails - but he never complained & always provided superb suggestions & recommendations. Awesome, awesome pre-sales support. Thanks Webcyclery for helping me out & also for supporting RideMonkey.com!!!