Just finished my budget hardtail (£450/ $700)

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Just finished my budget hardtail (£450/ $700)
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Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 5:18 Quote
Thought I would share with you guys what I have just built, I used to love riding as a kid and wanted to get back into it so started scouring pinkbike/ ebay/ gumtree for a nice used bike.

Didn't really like what I was seeing for my budget (£400) so bought a 2012 Commencal Ramones frame with the challenge of building a budget bike that didnt compromise in parts quality.

Anyway here goes, picked up the frame a month ago for £55, I had a friend who works in the powdercoating business and had it stripped to bare metal.

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Decided I didnt really like the bare metal look so we powdercoated it with some custom mixed paint he had lying around that a customer never used.

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Next up were some boring bits like seatpost, bars and stem, these were new old stock I won in an auction for £40. I also picked up a FSA gamma drive bb and crankset for £12 used - I cut off the granny tabs on the crankset so I could convert to 1x10.

Probably my favourite buy of the whole build was the Pike, I got the fork for £75 after snapping it up on the Pinkbike buysell section, the lowers were a little scratched and chipped but the stanchions were perfect. I think one of the reasons it was so cheap was because the lockout had stopped working but it was an easy fix that just involved popping the damper cartridge out and realigning the gates on/off position. It is now mechanically perfect!

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Next up I got some Superstar DH595 wheels for £70 which were in as new condition, I also picked up a new charge spoon saddle, used SRAM 10x cassette and chain for £30 and once used 2015 SRAM x7 shifter and mech for £40.

One area that I went over budget on is the brakes, I picked up a set of Formula RX brakes for £40 which I was over the moon with but once buying new adaptors, discs and pads I had pretty much doubled that figure. So I was a bit naive there but atleast I have some solid stopping power!

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There were a few brand new bits to finish the build new narrow wide chainring/ grips (Superstar), pedals (Specialized Bennies - got them for just £17) & headset (FSA dh pro) which finalised the build coming in at £444, I went over budget by about £50 but I cant grudge that when I look at the spec of the bike for what I made it for! I have estimated that the total cost of the parts new on my bike exceeds £1500 so I am very happy indeed!

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There she is there, havent had a chance to use the bike in anger yet and the brakes need bled but it feels great to ride so far. I also just picked up a 100mm dropper post for £30 (Btwin decathlon) and I am working on a remote conversion for it.

Thanks for reading, I made this thread to hopefully show that you can make a quality bike for a budget, not only that but it was a lot of fun and I had the option of choosing each part on the bike which gives you a satisfaction and pride far more than going into a shop and buying one. Also, I had a very limited knowledge of bikes before starting this but found everything pretty straight forward with a bit of googling, so dont be afraid to get your hands dirty!

Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 6:00 Quote
Looking great !

Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 6:58 Quote
Damn good looking bike. Well done!

Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 7:05 Quote
Nice ride. Just done something similar myself. Swapped my Giant Trance frame for a Commencal Meta SX HT. Really impressed with the Commencal frames.

Id like to see how you plan on modifying the dropper post iv just got one too! Great bit of kit for £30 but remote would be icing on the cake!

Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 8:02 Quote
selway89 wrote:
Nice ride. Just done something similar myself. Swapped my Giant Trance frame for a Commencal Meta SX HT. Really impressed with the Commencal frames.

Id like to see how you plan on modifying the dropper post iv just got one too! Great bit of kit for £30 but remote would be icing on the cake!

Thanks guys for the kind words.

@selway89, I have plan on how I will do it, the bits should arrive on Wednesday and if it works as intended I will share the design with you guys. I'm also really impressed with the dropper, it feels solid and such a good price, the remote should only cost me £10-15 to make too.

edit: Infact I just realised you were the guy who put me on to the droppers, I read your thread and immediately headed out to decathlon, I picked up the last one available in Scotland so thank you very much!

Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 8:46 Quote
greg28 wrote:
selway89 wrote:
Nice ride. Just done something similar myself. Swapped my Giant Trance frame for a Commencal Meta SX HT. Really impressed with the Commencal frames.

Id like to see how you plan on modifying the dropper post iv just got one too! Great bit of kit for £30 but remote would be icing on the cake!

Thanks guys for the kind words.

@selway89, I have plan on how I will do it, the bits should arrive on Wednesday and if it works as intended I will share the design with you guys. I'm also really impressed with the dropper, it feels solid and such a good price, the remote should only cost me £10-15 to make too.

edit: Infact I just realised you were the guy who put me on to the droppers, I read your thread and immediately headed out to decathlon, I picked up the last one available in Scotland so thank you very much!

No problem! Looking forward to seeing how you do it! Had a few moments where I could have done with a remote on the bar and not the lever between my legs!

Posted: Jul 26, 2015 at 9:19 Quote
Congrats on the bike. I would say have fun.

Posted: Jul 31, 2015 at 7:19 Quote
Just finished my remote retrofit for the cheap decathlon dropper post, it was a bit harder than expected but it functions flawlessly! I will show you guys how it was done in case anyone is thinking about doing the same with a lever dropper post.

All I had to do to the shifter (2015 X7) was remove the ratchet wheel and rebuild, all of the things I have read online have said that you have to cut the teeth off of the ratchet wheel instead but it appears that isn't necessary for this model of shifter.

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The post was wired up as shown below;

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As you can see the cable follows the top tube and comes up to the top of the seatpost where it is contained by an old barrel adjuster that acted as a cable stop. This was connected to the seatpost by a bracket I made up from some 1mm steel which was then dipped in a paint to protect it from rust. The bracket was fixed to the seatpost by drilling and tapping a m3 hole, I initially planned on fixing it with two bolts but found that one was sufficient as there isnt really any force on the bracket at all.

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Making the bracket and cable stop was the most complex part of the job but it was nessesary for maintaining the tension in the cable at the top and bottom of the seat posts range of motion. Once the gear cable inner passed through the barrel adjuster it utilised the arc that is present on the seat post, to ensure there was no cable rub I stuck a bit of transparent flexible tube over it, you could use anything really for this as long as it stops the gear cable rubbing against metal.

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Finally, A 1.5mm hole was drilled into the lever to allow for the gear cable to pass through, once it was through a collar with a grub screw was used to hold it in position, there is a link below for getting these, I can post a couple to anyone who wants them for the price of a stamp as you only need one and it comes in 10's.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/151354917852

So there it is, cost me about £12 and I have a fully working remote dropper post, its not the prettiest and still needs a bit of tidying up but hopefully this proves the concept and motivates people to give it a go!

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