Hey guys, first time post, woop!
I was wondering if I could get some tips on the best/most important upgrades for a dirt jumper bike.
I own the 2006 Orange Ms Isle and I couldn't tell you the specs right now because I'm at the parents house for the Christmas holidays and the bike is back at school... and for some reason the stock specs are next to impossible to find If your not familiar with the bike, it was retail 1700 GBP so wasnt by any means low end at the time. I have found someone on a forum who posted their stock parts and I think mine are similar:
Orange 16" frame
Marzocchi Dirt Jam Pro forks
Wheels Shimano Deore hubs and qrs, Sun Singletrack rims, Maxxis Lopes Bling Bling 2.35 tyres
Shimano Deore Rear mech 8 speed & Deore shifter
Truvativ Hussefelt bar & stem
Truvativ Crankset & chain device
SDG I beam seatpost & I Fly saddle
Hayes Nine hydraulic disc brakes
Orange seatpost quick release
What would you say are the most important upgrades to make to the bike, and what will doing so improve?
While this question would be more appropriate in the dirt and park section, I'll give it a go. Maybe the powers that be will move it there. The first place that I'd tend to go is the bar and stem. When you're riding, the bars are your primary contact point as well as what you see the most and those Truvative bits are a bit bulky looking and I've never really liked the feel of those bars. Fit up something sexy like a nice shiny set of Chromags and I bet that you'll like riding it more. Second, unless you do a lot of climbing and commuting on it, it's become traditional to run a single speed set up to keep things simple and quiet and light. You can do this by getting a bunch of spacers and a single cog for your Deore hub, but a dedicated single speed hub is cleaner and makes for a stronger wheel. Other than that, it's just a question of the performance of your existing parts. I'm not sure how your forks feel, but if you have the cash, some Argyles or a Circus would be nice and those Hayes Nine brakes haven't won any awards.
At the moment I am doing a decent amount of commuting for school (Bit of a pause for the winter months though). I graduate in the spring so once I'm settled somewhere and dont need it as much for commutes maybe ill change to single speed. I'm definitely not an "avid dirt jumper" in the sense that I like my bike for more of a multipurpose kind of bike whether it be riding trails, dirt jumping, commuting etc. so I think I would like the option of multispeed. I have had some issues with the chain falling off and I considered maybe upgrading to the SRAM X9 type 2 derailleur and cassette. Any thoughts on that?
I've been kind of poor lately and my old stuff hasn't broken, so I haven't had a chance to try it yet. But that sounds more like a problem with your Truvative chain device. As I recall, they're kind of flexy, which is not good for a chain device. Maybe that should be your first upgrade.