My youngest has put on a growth spurt that has meant she has outgrown her 24" FS frame. It's been great but its now a bit short in the top tube. Now that my eldest has moved up to a medium Anthem X, I had her old frame - an Xtension XS frame. I feel a bit bad for the youngest having to cop all of the hand-me-downs so I asked her what sort of colour scheme she wanted and she replied with a unambiguous "I want it blue". I had some leftover automotive paint in sky blue, so I did a bit of masking off and made some key bits blue. I didn't want to paint any of the wear areas as the brushed alu finish on this frame is really hard wearing and can take a truckload of abuse without looking crap (unlike anything painted). I needed a place to put some decals so an overcoat of some white and then a final coat of black finished the paint job. Linkages, derailleur hanger and seatpost clamp were all sand-blasted, primed and finished in the same blue.
Transferring all the parts took about an hour. Only two parts didn't make it across:
- the seat post as this frame takes a 31.6mm post and the 24" frame uses a 27.2mm post; and
- the carbon fibre chain guide because of the different seat tube diameters
I'm really pleased with how it turned out and my daughter loves it.
It's a fairly lightweight build with components selected for a 30kg girl.
|Frame||Xxtension, 4" horst link frame||2688|
|Fork||Rockshox SID Race 2007||1290|
|Wheels||Circus Monkey HDW2 front/HDW3 rear hubs, 16 x Ti spokes, 16 x straight gauge stainless, Velocity Aeroheat rims||1343|
|Seatpost||Custom carbon, carbon cradle, Ti bolts||142|
|Seatpost clamp||Custom, Ti bolt||18|
|Cranks||Truvative FiveD (shortened - 150mm)||505|
|Chainring||Blackspire Mono Veloce NW 30t||40|
|Bottom bracket||Token Carbon||218|
|Shifter||XT 9 Speed||135|
|Rear derailleur||XTR short cage||189|
|Cluster||XTR 11-34 9 speed||244|
|Front rotor||Aries 160mm||79|
|Rear rotor||KCNC Razor 140mm||61|
|Pedals||AEST platform with Ti spindles||284|
|Front tyre||Rocket Ron||445|
|Rear tyre||Rocket Ron||446|
With the 24" wheels the bottom bracket height is at 28cm. I'm not sure yet whether this will be a problem with rock strikes and pedal clearance which pedalling and cornering. The cranks are short at 150mm, so it should be no worse than a 30.5cm BB height with 175mm cranks.
To do list
The frame has a Manitou Radium QRL shock. It worked fairly well for my elder daughter, but she was bigger and heavier than my youngest is now. I'm at full negative on the rebound at the moment and it is still a bit on the slow side, so the rear packs down over repeated closely spaced bumps.
As a result, I have revalved a 2011 Monarch R to go on this bike, but I need to make some new bushings for it to fit. I had a choice between a Float R, Float RP2 or the Monarch R and decided to go with the Monarch R primarily because of the ease with which you can DIY revalve it. The Fox Float series are painful because of the need to use a fill needle for the IFP. When you are disassembling the shock frequently to test different settings, it is a real PITA to get the IFP charge right. The Monarch R uses a fill adapter for a standard shock pump.
Finally outgrown - April 2018
The day has finally arrived that my youngest has outgrown this bike and I've moved her on to a medium Giant Anthem X. A few things have changed over the years:
- 26" wheels: unlaced the 24" Aeroheat rims and relaced with Podium MMX rims; Was able to reuse the hubs but not the spokes. Ended up with a very nice 26" wheelset weighing under 1250g which she's still using on her latest bike;
- 120mm SID fork: fitted to give a bit more front travel and because I had one spare;
- 11-40t wide range 9 speed cassette: my daugther needed some easier gears for extended climbs and so I put together an 11-40T wide range 9spd cluster using two different XTR clusters and a 40t extender cog.
- 9 spd clutch XTR rear derailleur: even with the narrow-wide front chainring my daughter would drop the chain from time to time but I had already built a 9 speed wide range cassette. This meant I needed to build a 9 speed compatible rear derailleur with a clutch.