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Old 07-07-2016, 04:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Rockhopper help

So I have had this bike for over ten years and it maybe has only 5mi on it. Needless to say it is going to waste. Now with my kids wanting to ride more often I would like to dust the cobwebs off, but also improve it if possible.

My two main concerns are the front shock (which is way to soft) and the brakes. I'm 220lbs and it feels like I go right through the v brakes. So is there a 200.00 front shock worth a darn and is it worth putting disk on it? It will be ridden around Tahoe most of the time as my parents have a house up there and some down hill playing at kirkwood, but nothing competition. I just don't see any reason to buy a whole bike when I could do a few things with this one for now. Of course I could be way out of line.... Any advise blunt or not is appreciated.

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Old 07-08-2016, 12:58 PM   #2 (permalink)
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i would fist start out with either taking a file and really roughing up the brake pads to pull the hard/glazed rubber off or get new pads all together. v-brakes should be able to stop you, but if the pads got hard, which they tend to do over time, then they don't brake worth a shit. i'm 225 and v-brakes weren't bad if you're not doing super steep runs.

which model Axel is it? it may need to be pulled apart and freshened up and you can possibly buy a heavier spring and turn the compression damper up if your model came with that. if you find a $200 fork new or used, then a $70 wheel (which is cheap) and add a disk brake you are getting into the $300-$400 range. at that point you may be able to buy a used bike that is better than yours for that price and sell your bike to recoup some money.

I would start with the brake pads and go from there.
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Old 07-12-2016, 10:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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get some new (higher quality) pads, and get a heavier spring for the front fork.
like said above, converting to disk will cost more than a newer/better used bike
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Last edited by Alex456123; 07-12-2016 at 10:56 PM.
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Old 07-18-2016, 05:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Ride and enjoy as is no upgrades necessary.... (fix the brake issue with better pads/clean the rims).

Discs totally unnecessary, remember people have been riding bikes a century+ without them. I use to be more porky (~200lbs) dry, probably about your weight with a pack/water/tools n' gear), never had a problem with v-brake stopping power. Also cheap discs will just be a PITA and more trouble than they are worth.

Same thing with a cheap fork....

See the what are you riding thread; the bike I ride most often and put the most miles on is a 1998 Raleigh hardtail, with v-brakes, and an equally old Manitou fork, oil leak and all. MORE than enough to knock out training rides on (I typically do 15-20miles a day), and I'd think for just putting around the neighborhood with kids, what you posted looks good!

edit: I use to have a rigid cro-moly Rockhopper. Got stolen the first year I was a college kid at U of A

Last edited by FlexyTJ; 07-18-2016 at 05:52 PM.
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Old 09-03-2016, 04:01 AM   #5 (permalink)
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My buddy has my old '80's rockhopper.

But my kids each have one of your vintage. Decent bikes. Just ride it with your kids. Vbrake will be fine. One of ours has discs and the other vbrakes. I hardly notice the difference
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