Saracen Rush 1999 DH bike


Retro Newbie
Downhill bike at local jumps.JPGDownhill bike.JPGDownhill bike at Leeds Urban bike park.JPGdownhill bike custom decal.jpg
This is my dads 1999 Saracen Rush frame that came with a Stratos Helix Pro shock, Stratos MX6 forks (165mm travel), planet X seatpost, planet X stem (which we swapped because bar diameters have changed since then), and a cane creak headset. The bike sat for years and my dad never had chance to build it up, and since then he sadly passed away in 2015. In 2020 in lockdown my brother and I started to get really into mountain biking, and we remembered we had this frameset, so we got it out from storage and had a look at it and instantly decided we would build it up. We started to build the bike in November 2020 and have finally finished it as of early January 2022. Since on a limited budget the bike doesn't have top spec DH components, but we managed to get all the components to be mostly for enduro, but some for trail so at least the bike is rideable. We had the rear wheel custom built to the spec we wanted to make it as strong as possible and it is wrapped in a Maxxis High roller 26 x 2.3 tire. Also the front tire is a 2013 Bontrager Big Earl team issue (will be swapped to a Maxxis tire, probably a Minion DHF soon), which came off our dads 2013 Trek session 9.9 as he always used Maxxis tires. The bike has 26" wheels and rides well, but in the biggest travel setting (6 inches/152mm) the seat tube hits the rear tire when the shock bottoms out on big hits, so we run it in the medium travel setting (5.5 inches/140mm) to stop that happening. The forks leak oil like nothing else but that's typical Stratos for you, but they have good support when riding rough downhill tracks; definitely need to cut the seat post down a bit to as the seat gets in the way on steep trails. We put a few stickers on the bike of the brands we use, as the bike came with no decals at all. We have already taken this bike to Leeds Urban bike park, Stainburn forest, Kilburn, and plan to take it to Fort William later this year as well as other bike parks.

We built it up with modern components that were all brand new and from 2020+ onwards listed here:

Stem: RaceFace Chester 50mm 31.8mm
Bars: Spank Spike 800 Race
Grips: DMR Deathgrips
Brakes: Shimano MT401 with 200mm rotors front and rear
Shifter: Sram X5 10 speed
Derailleur: Sram X5 10 speed
Chain Guide: RSP post mount
Cranks: Sram SX Eagle with 32 tooth front chainring
Cassette: Sram PG1030 10 speed
Chain: Sram PG1015 10 speed
Pedals: DMR V8 Classic
Front Wheel: Raleigh enduro rim with a Formula DH hub
Rear Wheel: Spank Spoon 32 hole freeride rim with a Shimano Deore 10 speed hub
Front tire: 2013 Bontrager Big Earl team issue
Rear tire: Maxxis High roller II exo casing
Seatpost: (the original that came with the frameset) Planet x standard
Seat: ETC trail saddle

Built in loving memory of Ben Campbell 1978-2015


MacRetro Rider
Not a downhiller but lusted after those Saracen DH bikes and enduro machines. They are just so burly looking and over the top almost Tonka toy like. Brilliant restoration and great to make it a usable shrine to your dad, he'd be proud and happy 😎😎😎


Fat Chance Fan
The work you put into the bike and all the new memories you will form with it make for a very fitting tribute, it's lovely to think of two brothers working together on finishing something your Dad started.