Hardtail Dreaming – Emily’s custom MTB

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We do a lot of custom builds here at CBC, and Emily’s been dreaming of her own custom bike. Here’s her story.

June 15th, 2021

I started riding when I became the newest recruit of the CBC Team back in March. I have had bikes all my life but I haven’t been serious about cycling until this year. Trying something new is often hard (and frightening!), but my first MTB ride was an epic adventure that gave me great memories and inspired me to be an MTB rider.

My first few shop rides were on a dual-suspension MTB, and we did a few of the Kids Ride MTB schools as well. They’re fun.

Steve and Sam tell me to stand up more, and I’ve had a couple of spills off the bike that are definitely making me a better rider. We’ve done some night rides as well, they’re super fun. I don’t like the hills that much, do probably no-one does, right?

A few months later I’m going good. I love riding, and working in the bike shop is great.
This week, Steve said to me “Em, we are going to custom build your new bike”. How awesome is that!

My new bike will be based on the popular Cannondale Trail 8 in the Graphite colour. Cannondale say that “…this is a mountain bike built to raise your game and to explode a passion for the trail.” – that sounds pretty OK!
My bike is designed for the mountains and ready for absolutely anything, especially mud! It’s light and durable with an alloy frame, and in standard form it has a Suntour M3030 75mm hydraulic fork, 3×7 speed Shimano drivetrain with alloy cranks and Tektro mechanical disc brakes.

Custom building a new bike for myself was something I never considered doing. This is a great opportunity for me to work alongside Steve, he’s going to teach me about bike building by helping me do the work while he supervises. I’ll gain the mechanical knowledge of how a bike works, and pimping my own bike with my choice of accessories and setup will see me out hitting the trails with Samual and Steve and enjoying every moment of it.

This morning we spent some time checking out the bike, and making a list of the parts well need.

We’ll upgrade the bike to a Shimano Deore 1×10 drivetrain with Clarks M2 hydraulic disc brakes and a pair of Suntour Raidon 32mm air forks. This setup will give a plush ride with remote lockout versatility, and the brakes will ensure I have stopping power in all weather conditions.
A FUNN dropper seat post will make the bike easy to get on and off, plus when we’re riding the downhills I can drop it to keep my weight back for better stability.
We’ll fit a 1x crankset with a narrow-wide 32t chainring, this will give me reliable and accurate shifting plus the wide-ratio 11-40 cassette will give me all the hill-climbing gears I need.
I’ll fit some 780mm Pro riser bars, some pink ESI grips (of course!) and an MTB saddle.
The wheels will be standard for now, and later this year we will build some custom wheels. First I have to find some pink rims 🙂

The build will take about two weeks, then the bike will go to the awesome team at Sign Style for some new graphics.

I’ll be riding this bike on all of our shop rides, and on the first Saturday of every month I will be with the Kids Ride MTB Academy helping kids aged 6 – 10 years old improving their and my own skills on their MTB and carving up the trails with them. You will even catch me out in the dark on the ‘Wednesday Night Ride’ with my bright lights and warm winter gear on.

I love to explore and adventure the local trails and be a part of a cycling group. You will definitely see me coming out of the scrub with a massive smile on my face, bike covered in mud, bright red face and sweat dripping. I’m always up for a new challenge and exploring new trails. I’m excited to build my bike!

June 26th, 2021

It’s finally built and ready for the first ride. Here’s the spec:

29″ Suntour Raidon 29″ Air Forks – superb fork performance for a plush ride at a sensible price

Clarks Disc Brake Set – super value and great performance – kit includes levers, calipers, discs and bolts

PRO Koryak MTB Riser bar – light and strong with a low rise and sweep

ESI Extra Chunky Grips, Pink – the best MTB grip ever, in the best colour ever 🙂

BBB Dualcage Composite, Black/Pink – great value bottle cage, takes all bottle brands

Mucky Nutz Face Fender, Black/Magenta – light, colourful and very effective at keeping mud out of your steering head bearings

Sunrace Zeron 1x 32t Chainwheel Set – new product from a great brand, hollow spindle with light alloy construction

Shimano Rapidfire 10 speed shifter – precise shifting every time

Shimano Deore 10 Speed Rear Derailleur – long cage derailleur with clutch for smooth gear changes

Sunrace 11-40 10 speed cassette – super quality with mega-bling appearance

Shimano 10 Speed Chain – quality brand performance at a sensible price

Pirelli Scorpion XC Mixed Terrain Tyres – fast and grippy XC tyre in 2.2 width

META CNC Derailleur Hanger – strong and light, much better than OEM

Coming up this weekend is KIDS RIDE MTBs, then we’ll have some night rides and a shop ride for teens during the school holidays. Follow our MTB facebook group here to stay informed on ride times and locations.


November ’21

Finally the wheels are finished!

Blunt 35 white rims on Novatech hubs, they’re light and strong.

See you on the trails!