What are the first components you’d spec on your next bike… old or new?

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  • What are the first components you’d spec on your next bike… old or new?
  • gohan

    azonic single walls, sram x9 ss rear mech, x0 shifter, nokon cable, hopes for brake and hubs, oh and lapierre dh920 for frame with fox 40, rode one last wed at a show, blew me away!!!!! cant afford it, second thought on brakes…..formula oro, or what ever they are called!


    I just need a decent frame and fork for my next build as I have the rest (Full XTR and carbon bits on a HT already with CK headset, RF Good v’s Evil grips etc like yourself).

    Not sure of Stiffee frame or a racey hardtail. Probably a bomb proof stiffee.

    XTR cables made an improvement on my roadbike too.

    Funny you should mention Arzonics as I sold them last year and using carbon bars-makes me walk down steps rather than ride in fear of snapping! Think I might have to buy them back!


    Yep, that’s why I stopped using carbon bars. Maybe they are stronger, but I just worried too much.


    ruffian (or thinner copies) lock-ons are about the only thing I know I’d spec on any bike.

    def wouldn’t touch a king headset
    def wouldn’t use Azonic bars, bent azonics in the past and am used to a slightly different sweep now.
    def would’t have any carbon.
    actually there’s far more stuff I’d never use to be honest.

    gohan where did you ride the DH920?

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    Thomson Seatpost, cos they’re light and strong and not overly priced (and they sell well too), way better than any other seatpost IMO.

    I used to think the same about CK headsets, but these days any £20 cartridge bearinged headset seems to work pretty much as well for long enough for me to have got bored of the frame its attached to anyway! Yes, CK’s tend to end up going from frame to frame, but despite how good they are it’s a lot to justify spending on one component when something 1/5th the price does the same job. That and 2 out of 3 of my bikes have internal style headsets (one a Campag type, the other a zero stack Can Creek) so CK doesn’t cater for them!

    Easton bars usually, I like the shape, and 27″ is about as wide as I’ve ever needed. That said the RaceFace bars my latest bike with are quite good too.

    Tubeless wheels/tyres, cos punctures suck!

    XTR gear cables are indeed a wise move, though recently found the cheap Clarks stuff sold in Halfords to be a fully sealed setup just like XTR. Seems to do the same job for less than half the price! Time will tell but first dozen or so rides through muddy conditions and they still shift like new at least.

    Shimano Disc brakes cos they just work. Fit and in general, forget. Unlike most other brands I’ve experienced at least!

    SRAM chains, PC971 usually or a 991 if I can find them for the right price. The quick link is a god send when it comes to removing the chain and they seem to shift better than Shimano chains too.

    Bolt through forks cos QR’s suck!

    Shimano mechs and shifters, preferably XTR M952 (yeah right, though I still have some going strong on one of my bikes) as SRAM feels cheap/nasty and I hate the position of the trigger finger lever on SRAM shifters.


    For me, I like stuff that’s just proved to be plain dependable. Sometimes that means pimpy, but often not, so…

    King Headset (getting the pimp out of the way early)
    This is one place I really like to fit and forget

    Avid Mechanicals
    I don’t care how good hydros have got. My old school original spec mechanicals just feel right to me all the time. They’re set up dead right, and they’re easy to keep that way. The bite just works for me.

    Avid SD5 levers
    Just perfect. No flex, great feel, nice adjustment. I tried the 7s and the ultimates and hated the flex.

    Azonic Double Wall risers
    Light bars scare me. These are big, and solid, without weighing an absolute ton. They’re just the right shape.

    Race Face Good’n’Evils
    One of the most important parts of a bike.

    XTR cables
    Fit. Forget. Forget some more. Forget even more. And I like the thin look.


    XT pedals, Stans tubless…

    I’m not so brutal on gear, so I’ve not been through heaps, meaning I don’t have as strong an opinion on a lot of stuff.

    Maxxis tyres – for where/what I ride, they cover all options.

    And whatever the chain may be, setting it up with a SRAM powerlink or whatever it’s called is the way to go, with a spare in the bag just in case.


    Agreed Langy, a powerlink is a genius little thing so SRAM chain for certain (not “for sure” as I am not a professional sportsman) and probably SRAM gearing, and Crank Brothers pedals.
    If I bought a complete bike I would not be too precious though, probably just put my pedals on and go.


    I’m not too fussy on speccing stuff, it’s usually put on what I can afford at the time.
    I would make sure I had Saint stuff on, so bombproof and easy to set up and use, and I’d stick with my tried and tested Easton bars and post. Oh and a SRAM chain and powerlink. And Lock On grips. This is on my 8″ tank – for my hardtail, please read the first line 🙂


    I’d make sure the chainset and bearings were shimano….. bombproof kit even at the XC level

    SRAM PC991 chain

    Bonty tubeless ready tyres

    Race Face Deus XC seatpost

    Fizik Gobi saddle

    All other parts are dependant on type of bike


    Speedplay Frog pedals, the only pedal that has enough float to let me ride without Knee problems,(also has grease ports and easily replaceable cartridge bearings if you haven’t been bothered to use them.)

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    Flite saddle, ODI ruffians, Easton EA70 bars, Thomson seatpost.

    All proven kit and all stuff that i like.

    SRAM shifters and mechs.


    I’m doing this at the moment (for the 3rd time). once you get used to a custom build it’s hard to go back.

    Maxxis tyres
    Marzocchi forks
    Hope brakes
    King headset
    Thomson stem
    Shimano 8spd cassette & XTR rear mech
    SRAM trigger shifters & chain
    onZa Ulés (for xc bike), Rogues for dh bike
    WTB saddle

    I like Hope hubs, Sun rims, Titec or Burgtec bars and Gravity Droppers too, though these aren’t quite so important to me. and in an ideal world my dh bike would have an Avalanche shock with ti spring. but the most important thing is that the frame fits properly and the geometry suits my riding style. if you’re not comfortable on the bike then any component choice is secondary.

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    For me it would be:

    Hope brakes – because they work and are easy to bleed, not that they need attention very much.

    Lock on grips (preferably the yeti ones)

    Gripshift and X9 or X0 mechs.

    Time pedals.

    Rockshox forks

    WTB Pure V saddle.

    And something very nice to hold it all together that isn’t made by the big S.

    not that bothered, whatever fits and is in the budget usualty gets bought.

    As the OP said, if you stick with one thing (mechanical disks) you get stuck in your ways and dont get to try new things. lock on grips, HTII, easton bars, titec posts, SDG saddles are all bits I’ve bough after thinking , yea why not.


    Hope hubs, lock on grips, rockshox forks, Easton bars if I’m going the carbon route. Selle Italia saddles (Flite for FR/DH, SLR for anything else)
    Probably Hope headset (had too many problems with Kings). Maxxis tyres. Usually Shimano cranks and cassette.

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