Is it possible to update this old bike?

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  • Is it possible to update this old bike?
  • robdob

    Well that MTB coach is an idiot.

    Head over to Retrobike and you’ll find loads of people riding bikes like that quite happily off road.

    Some v-brakes would def be better, or even better some Maguras.

    Get some old Marzocchi Z3’s on it if you want (60-80mm travel) which should be ok but I wouldn’t bother.

    I rode my 1994 Kona Kilauea a bit more recently and kept up with the modern riders just fine.

    You don’t need to spend loads to get it nice to ride. It’s be a good starter bike to help you learn some skills on, then you could maybe buy something modern later on – gives you time to save up.

    And enjoy it!


    Some wider riser bars would help it ride a lot easier – some nice cheap ones on CRC at the moment.

    EDIT see here :


    I’ll be really surprised if those 2.4 tyres don’t ‘saw’ through the rear stays. possibly want something a little narrower 1.9 – 2.1 maximum.

    It’ll be perfectly fine off road, and lots of us rode bikes just like that. or at least i think i did, i can’t remember that far much anymore


    Putting some pedals on it might make it easier and more comfortable to ride 🙂

    Premier Icon deejayen

    I’ve got an old bike from back in the day, and wondered if it’s possible to make it a little more comfortable to ride off-road.

    Since I took the photo I’ve fitted 2.4″ tyres and removed the Magura thingy sticking up from the handlebars.

    The canti’s aren’t great, so I’d probably need to add V-brakes (with ‘travel-agents’ for correct cable pull).

    It’s a 19″ frame, and I’m about 6ft tall.

    I’m not sure if a pair of 80mm travel forks, or different rigid forks would help, plus a shorter stem and different handlebars.

    I’d be using it to get started in mountain biking, and when I get a different bike I could pass it on to someone else.

    Is it worth bothering with? An MTB coach did advise me not to ride it – mainly due to the brakes and geometry, but I’m wondering if I could do anything to make it a decent ride.

    Premier Icon deejayen

    Thanks for that. Would the 50mm / 750mm bars be the best? Would the existing stem be okay? The current bars are low and straight, putting a lot of weight on my wrists and quite far forward. I did wonder about some ‘comfort’ bars – I think On-One sell some which have some height to them, and are swept back towards the rider.

    The brake levers and rapidfire shifters are one unit, so I’m limited to what brakes will fit without changing stuff. I should have a pair of travel agents somewhere which could work with V-brakes.

    I bought the 2.4″ tyres from a shop and they fitted them and said they were quite close (maybe 5 – 10mm from memory) but would be okay. I suppose it might depend on how the tyre flares out in use, and if it collects mud/stones.

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