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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 1:39 pm 
Devout Dirtbag

Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:19 am
Posts: 148
Location: North-East
I have a raleigh ascender from the early 90's, i found that alot of the original parts (bars, wheels etc) were very heavy so i replaced them with more modern stuff and got the weight of the bike down from 16.5kg to 13.5kg! Theres a few other bits i'm wondering if they are worth changing to reduce weight further, or will there not be much difference?

I'm more clued up on road bikes, so pardon my ignorance on mtb's. Also i realise the bike was "low range", but its in pristine condition, rides lovely, and is sentimental because it was my late fathers bike. I will eventually get a reynolds frame and swap the bits over onto it. The frame is quite light anyway (i forget the weight), it was more the budget scaffy bar ancillaries that made the bike heavy. But to be fair, i think they were built to be strong and bulletproof rather than skinny flimsy weight weany!

Chainset and cranks, these are omega triple chainrings, black with plastic covers? Will this part weigh a ton, is it worth replacing with something modern, and what would fit? I'd stick with the same standard number of teeth.

Stem - the raleigh one is 550g! I bought a H20 stem for it at 225g but it wouldnt fit. Anyone know what size the original is?

Bottom bracket - not too bothered about weight saving here but what modern sealed BB's would fit?

Tyres - i got some schwalbe cityjets semi- slick at 480g each, is there any other affordable lighter weight semi-slicks? And for winter nobbly tyres i use the original raleigh tyres which grip lovely in the snow, but they weigh 900g each! Again can anyone recommend an affordable lighter weight nobbly tyre? Preferably gumwall for both types of tyre.

Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 1:54 pm 
King of the Skip Monkeys
King of the Skip Monkeys

Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2007 4:34 pm
Posts: 29666
Location: in the shed
Percybigun wrote:
I have a raleigh ascender from the early 90's, i found that alot of the original parts (bars, wheels etc) were very heavy so i replaced them with more modern stuff and got the weight of the bike down from 16.5kg to 13.5kg! Theres a few other bits i'm wondering if they are worth changing to reduce weight further, or will there not be much difference?

I'm more clued up on road bikes, so pardon my ignorance on mtb's. Also i realise the bike was "low range", but its in pristine condition, rides lovely, and is sentimental because it was my late fathers bike. I will eventually get a reynolds frame and swap the bits over onto it. The frame is quite light anyway (i forget the weight), it was more the budget scaffy bar ancillaries that made the bike heavy. But to be fair, i think they were built to be strong and bulletproof rather than skinny flimsy weight weany!

MTB's from this era are just chunky road bikes, treat the with the same attention as you would a road bike with axle length, chain line, stem sizes, etc etc

Chainset and cranks, these are omega triple chainrings, black with plastic covers? Will this part weigh a ton, is it worth replacing with something modern, and what would fit? I'd stick with the same standard number of teeth.

As above, its no different to a 700c touring spec or road triple so look to see what fits and is cheap enough on ebay. Plenty of modern options too, any weight saved is a bonus plus you can use the old one as an anchor or to weigh down dead bodies if concrete isnt to hand

Stem - the raleigh one is 550g! I bought a H20 stem for it at 225g but it wouldnt fit. Anyone know what size the original is?

usually 22.2mm but quite possibly 21.1mm totally buggering up any chances of fitting anything else.

Bottom bracket - not too bothered about weight saving here but what modern sealed BB's would fit?

yes, usually 68mm shell, even external BB will fit but I wouldnt go too mad

Tyres - i got some schwalbe cityjets semi- slick at 480g each, is there any other affordable lighter weight semi-slicks? And for winter nobbly tyres i use the original raleigh tyres which grip lovely in the snow, but they weigh 900g each! Again can anyone recommend an affordable lighter weight nobbly tyre? Preferably gumwall for both types of tyre.

There are no gumwalls left on the planet... but try super skinny Panaracer Pasela, not cheap but very skinny and very fast and tanwall

Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 3:38 pm 
Old School Hero

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 10:52 pm
Posts: 208
Location: manchester uk
Are you still running the original wheels? They will make a big difference and the crank will probably weigh the same as a small moon. I have an exage one that's been sat in the shed and when I took the old one off my Marin and compared them you could feel the difference was massive. No scales needed but a forklift would have been handy. So if your going to stick with it then wheels and crank are going to make the most difference.

Biggest problem you've got is loosing weight from an old Raleigh is allways going to be a struggle because as you said they are built to last so my advice would be to
Get a crank and wheels. Clean the old ones and store them then get a new frame and put this back to original. I wouldn't use the Raleigh tyres either just to keep them fresh when the restoration begins.

I can see your not new to the bike scene so you know weight loss can become all encompassing and expensive so get your lighter parts onto a lighter frame for using and abusing and put this back to its heavy original but sentimental state for high days and holidays.


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