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Transformation almost complete - MTB to Commuter

DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
edited November 2009 in Commuting chat
Have been swapping/upgrading parts on my MTB with a view to make it my main commute bike. It started life as a Mongoose Tyax Comp - Cheap and cheerful. When I first got the bike I spent a lot on hope disc brakes, upgraded chainset, slightly better forks and shifters, and Mavic XC 321 rims with Hope XC hubs. Its taken my ample 20st frame up and down various rocky trails at Coed Y Brennan, never once complaining.

MTB mode (circa 2005):


Now though after deciding to ditch my second bike, a Trek 7.5FX, I've tarted the mongoose up with XT front and rear mechs and cables, Michelin City tyres, full guards, rigid forks and a charge spoon saddle (not sure the brown fits though).

Got an Electron 9LED light and a Smart Polaris LED light up front and two Smart 1/2watt rear lights. A little reflective tape up front as well. She's doing me proud on the streets at the moment, but she still needs some work. I want to change the wheels as they're really quite heavy. I'm also swapping out the tyres for some skinnier, lighter slicks.

Anyhow, here she is in commuter guise:

FCN Daily commute = 11
FCN Fixie commute = 5


  • snellgrovesnellgrove Posts: 171
    edited October 2009
    Looking cool 8) I actually think the mud-guards make it look good - front one could do with some minor fettling perhaps. Rear one fits like a glove!

    I'm guessing you can corner hard and pedal with a MTB bottom bracket too, without any scaryness :shock: you only do that once on a road bike!!!!

    Maybe some bar ends to finish it off.... but I don't know which ones. Some that look good... (how very vague :lol: )

    why is it a triple though?!
  • DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
    snellgrove wrote:

    why is it a triple though?!

    Good question, and one I don't have an answer for!

    *adds it to the list of works* :lol:
    FCN Daily commute = 11
    FCN Fixie commute = 5
  • Will certainly help boost your fitness mate, pedaling that beast around - ready for the single speed :)
    Planet X Nanolight High Modulus (Roadie) | 2008 Giant Bowery (Fixie)
  • g00seg00se Posts: 2,221
    What make of mud guards are those?
  • Its maybe a triple as i think most MTB are fitted that way to give you the extra gearing for the hills. Tourers are the same to allow for weight etc.

    The large ring might be about 42 but it depends on the chain set. That looks like sram?

    If you try to change it to a standard or compact youll have to watch out for the indexing and may have to change the front de-railer and shifter etc.

    You may find that you actually want to be turning 50 or greater tho on the large ring into a 10 or 11 at the rear if you get a nice down slope, down wind straight run home.

    Iv just started to ride my old 90's dawes horizon for the winter and put the hybrid away. The hybrids a compact and the horizon is a triple and i feel as if im spinning like a crazy mad man. im looking into changing the chainset as i write this.

    Anyone any ideas?
    If i aint riding it, then im thinking about riding it.
  • DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
    The mudguards are SKS Commuters -

    I find the gearing is actually pretty good for me. I've been riding it for 3 or 4 years (amazed it hasn't worn out yet) and I'm used to it. The only issue I have is that the cranks are a little longer than my Trek's, so theres a little more effort involved I find.

    I'd love to replace the frame at some point. Had my eye on an On One frame, but funds aren't there at the moment.
    FCN Daily commute = 11
    FCN Fixie commute = 5
  • Wallace1492Wallace1492 Posts: 3,707
    I stuck on Cane Creek bar ends to my MTB when using it for commuting and they were perfect for what I wanted. They are also great now that it is changed back to knobblies, and getting used in the mud.

    BTW, bike looks smashing. I had to look close to see the rear mudguard!!
    "Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,802
    I'm in the process of finishing my new commuter, I've dropped the small and middle chainrings of the cranks and put the large in the middle location, that has saved me about 450g (2 rings, inner ring bolts, mech, cable and shifter) - you only need to try the commute once and work out which gears you use! (my current commuter is 22/32/42 and 11/28 7speed rear, new will be 46 front and 11/32 9sp rear).

    Like those mudguards...neet

    Remove the rear V posts, A mate snagged a leg on unused ones once, not pretty.....

    If your commute is hilly you may want to look at replacing some of the finishing kit with less MTB orientated and lighter parts (e.g. I'm getting an on-one stem, 100mm 147g, versus typically 250g for an MTB stem upto 330g for a DH and some carbon bars 120g versus typically 275g for MTB items.), you may find the steering a bit quick for a while due to the steeper head angle (I did when going from sus to rigid) as well.

    Current steed - Whyte T129, 2013 frame, mongrel Revelations, Giant dropper, Stans S1 wheelset. 12, Magura Trail Sport brakes, 1x11. 12.8Kg
  • DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
    I swapped the stem recently when going to the rigids, as the bike is a lot more stretched out than with the old forks. The old stem was quite long compared to this stubby little PRO stem I have on there now.

    The V mounts have been on there for 4 years without issue, but I hear what you're saying. I've just never gotten around to removing them! I might attack a few things over the comming weeks and get her complete :D

    The bars are a little wide now, I find. I replaced the grips recently and the new grips are shorter than the old. I'm finding my hands are about an 2cm further out each side now. I thought about shortening the bars, but I might actually look at some replacements in the near future. I might time it with trying to get hold of some new shifters too (would like matching XT shifters now!)

    As for bar ends, I'm not sure. I might consider it though. I like the look of bull horns, but having tried out a Charge Plug with that style of bars, I think it'd take a bit of getting used too.
    FCN Daily commute = 11
    FCN Fixie commute = 5
  • DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
    Oh, the only "bad" thing about the mud guards is how the rear attaches to the bike at the top. It uses a silver metal bracket which you screw onto the frame as usual, but then bend into shape onto the guard to hold it in place. It doesn't seem to attach in any other way. I had a bit of rattling when going over the bumps, but I've played about and clamped them a little better.

    Also, with my setup the front mounting bracket pulls the guard too high at the front. I want to make a bracket to extend the mount down, so the front guard sits a little more flush with the tyre :)

    But hey, at £15 I'm not complaining :)
    FCN Daily commute = 11
    FCN Fixie commute = 5
  • Stuey01Stuey01 Posts: 1,273
    I'd defo cut the bars down if you're using it in traffic. I've also got my eye on a set of ergo bar ends, £30 though!

    How do you find those tyres? they look pretty fat. I'm running 1.5" tyres on my MTB commuter and they offer a good mix of comfort and speed.

    Like the mudguards - they are on the shopping list.
    Not climber, not sprinter, not rouleur
  • DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
    The tyres are pretty big and heavy. A lot of rolling mass when combined with my rims. I think they are 1.95's. Comfy enough, though not having front sus is very noticeable! When I bought them I understood my rims couldn't go much lower than that, but I've since learned otherwise. I have some 1.5's on order at my LBS.
    FCN Daily commute = 11
    FCN Fixie commute = 5
  • g00seg00se Posts: 2,221
    After seeing the mudguards on this bike - I bought some SKS Commuters too. Though these were the hybrid 45mm size. Needed a bit of fettling to get the left front support to fit around the front disc callipers - though managed a good job of it in the end.

    The rear seat stay mounting seems different though. it's a heavy plastic clip that attaches to the guard and then can me bolted into place.

  • DevUKDevUK Posts: 299
    They look great :) I had the same problem with my front disc caliper, but it seems to be OK.

    On a different note, I've seen someone selling a 2008 Dr Dew Plus frame at a very good price and I'm wondering if I should consider it. Only problem is it'd mean getting 700c rims and rebuilding my wheels, and new forks...

    So tempting. £80 for a very good condition Dew Plus frame, in fetching gold... hmn...
    FCN Daily commute = 11
    FCN Fixie commute = 5
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