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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 5:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 19, 2007 10:05 am
Posts: 1014
Location: Brussels
I bought the frame from a friend at the end of 2006 and built it up with spares I had to hand, to wind up with a real mongrel. I've gradually replaced almost everything to end up at the following build. I've removed the decals and polished it up, but have replacements from gil_m to go on it soon - though I can't decide whether to stick with the stealth look?

In the end though I think that's a moot point as I'm slowly but surely concluding that it's too long for me with a 23.5" effective top tube. The pics look in proportion but for my height I have long legs and a stumpy top so I just feel too stretched out. The final straw was 10 mins on a friend's Titus the other night, which had a ~22" ETT. Ah well, you live and learn, and in the meantime she's a real beauty just to look at!

Frame: 2003 Litespeed Lookout Mtn 18", 3/2.5 Ti

Fork: Fox F100X

Headset: Cane Creek intergrated
Stem: Thomson Elite
Handlebar: Easton MonkeyLite XC high rise
Grips: ODI Lock-On
Barends: with risers?? Are you mad??

Brakes: Hope Mono Mini w 160mm rotors
Brake Hoses: Hope std (F) and braided (R)

Shifters: Shimano XTR M952 Rapid Fire
Front Derailleur: Shimano XT M760
Rear Derailleur: Shimano XT Shadow, long cage
Derailleur Cables: LBS special
Cassette: SRAM PC990
Chain: KMC gold plated
Cranks: Race Deus 175mm
Chainrings: Race Face RaceRings, 44/32/22
Chainring bolts: Race Face steel
Bottom Bracket: Superstar ceramic X-Type
Pedals: Crank Bros Candy

Hub Skewers: Mavic locking cam type
Rims: Mavic Crossland
Hubs: Mavic Crossland UST-ready
Nipples: yes
Spokes: naturally
Tyres: Schwalbe Black Shark Mud(F) and Maxxis Medusa UST (R)
Tubes: Continental (F), tubeless (R)

Saddle: Selle Italia SLR XC
Seatpost: Superstar carbon
Seatpost Binder: Litespeed

The SRAM cassette and KMC chain have gone back on since these pics were taken - I use cheap Shimano ones for Belgian winter mud (hence the tyres, which will also soon be replaced with summer ones).

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 7:42 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 8:24 am
Posts: 470
Location: Pau (Aquitaine) - like Aberdeen but less violent
Sweet. I like the stealth look. Decals just fall off ti frames anyway.

For fit, maybe you could try an even shorter stem? (seems to be in vogue in the mtb press these days) Or nudge the saddle fro a bit?

How do you get on with the Superstar BB in said Belgian mud? Read some reviews that said it didn't last long in such conditions.

Presume the Ardennes would be the best area for mtb in Belgium? Went there for a conference in the dead of winter last year; looked like plenty of riding.


 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 19, 2007 10:05 am
Posts: 1014
Location: Brussels
Funny you say that about decals on Ti frames as these ones were a bitch to get off. No joy at all with a heat gun so lots wet'n'dry and elbow grease. the decals were very tatty though so it's a clear 'upgrade'.

The original Superstar BB died within about 5 months, with the coup de grace delivered by a hellishly muddy 24hr event in Spa. Rather oddly, the non-drive side was still spinning fairly smoothly but the drive side was seized solid. There's a top-hat insert to allow the cranks to carry on spinning in this even but once I popped that out it was dead as a dodo.

I sent it back for inspection and they sent a replacement out very quickly along with a note saying they'd had issues with a batch of sub-standard bearings. The new one hasn't been in long but no problems so far but if this one gives up the ghost early then I won't bother again I don't think. I bought the ceramic one on a whim almost when I had to replace the original Race Face one after it died early. Shimano units seem to be the best over here. We had a very cold winter so lots of frozen rather than muddy riding (it was -14 for one night ride and we all started having problem with hydraulic brakes)

Not a fan of really stumpy stem, and even with the saddle right forward and eg a 70mm stem I'd still be considerably longer than on my friend's Titus - which instantly felt better even with a layback post and longer stem than this. I'm not going to rush into a decision as I have a 16.5" Raleigh SPD Ti hardtail frame on loan/appraisal from a friend, but likewise that seems to fit me far better.

Cheers, Gareth.

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