Advice for Bottlerocket build

phillynight

Likes Bikes
Ayo!

So I just made a weird mid-life decision to pick-up a medium Transition Bottlerocket frame. When I lived in the US my friend had a BR and I loveddd ripping on it so I've been feeling nostalgic. I currently have a ole 2010 Norco 125 that I beat around on but it is terrible on anything other than street, dirtjumps and packed dirt trails that only go mildly downhill. I wanted something more that I can kick around all over and hit some decent downhill sections sooo yeah here's my Norco:

368792
368793


Now I am left with mad questions about my decision hahah here is the frame I just picked up:

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368795


I am thinking I am going to strip it all the way down, get the bushing pulled and get it powdercoated white with black linkage, then get it rebuild with new bushings (I think this is what I need https://www.shockcraft.co.nz/transition-suspension-bearing-kit-2-enduro.html) From there is where I need lots of advice. I am hoping to do the build for about $750-1000 which means salvaging any parts from the Norco that'll work half decently (until I have more cash to upgrade or start breaking things). I've looked at the specs from both bikes and the main things that look like they'll swap over are:
  • Drivetrain should swap direct (both have 73mm shell BB) - Is it possible to re-use the BB from the Norco or is it better to buy a new one?
  • Front sprocket will likely need to be changed for better downhill gearing, not sure what sizes to be looking at tho?
  • Chain guide might be a direct swap but I am not 100% sure on the ISCG / ISCG 05 stuff, both mounts look the same on both frames
  • Wheels should swap direct
  • Brakes should swap direct
  • Seatpost/clamp should work (not 100% but this isn't a huge deal if I have to buy new)
  • This leaves the front end and where I have the most questions: the 100mm DJ forks will be useless for what I need. I've been searching around and 26" forks seem to be either stupid expensive for "new" old stock or completely thrashed second hand, which led me to see if 27.5 forks will work and from what I've read a lot of people use 27.5 forks on 26" frames/wheels... any recommendations on what kind I should be looking for? Budget in mind maybe max of 5-600 if possible? Better for me to go second hand on forks and rebuild if they need love or should I be looking for new? I don't quite understand the 1 1/8 tapered vs straight steerer stuff but it looks like both bikes use 1.5 headtube with 1 1/8 forks so I am not sure if the stem will be direct swap depending on which fork I get.]
Sorry, that's a lot of fkn questions lol. I really appreciate any help or advice, I haven't built a bike since back in the day building BMXers and could use some guidance. I'm based in Melbourne (Collingwood) so if there are any bike shops you think would be chill enough to chat with me about stuff that's cool too. Thanks much in advance and can't wait to actually rip trails and not be scared to do drops and rocks for fear of breaking my wrists and knees hahah
 

moorey

Ask me about Piriformis syndrome
Had a bottlerocket. Loved it. A lot to unpack there.
It’s 1.5 HT yes, do you know what headset is in it?
 

andrew9

Likes Dirt
If the BB is in good condition, you can certainly reuse them.

Chainguide; the Bottlerocket looks to be iscg-old so that's good because even if your chaingude is iscg-05 you can make an adaptor plate.

I wouldn't strip and powder coat it, it looks great now. I really like bikes with factory paint, I see too many dodgy resprays and I always think it's been stolen or repaired. Anyway, do it if it makes you happy

Sent from my moto g(6) using Tapatalk
 

moorey

Ask me about Piriformis syndrome
If the BB is in good condition, you can certainly reuse them.

Chainguide; the Bottlerocket looks to be iscg-old so that's good because even if your chaingude is iscg-05 you can make an adaptor plate.

I wouldn't strip and powder coat it, it looks great now. I really like bikes with factory paint, I see too many dodgy resprays and I always think it's been stolen or repaired. Anyway, do it if it makes you happy

Sent from my moto g(6) using Tapatalk
Agreed on the paint. I like it as is.
I ran 160mm lyriks in mine and head angle was still pretty steep. Also ran coil and solid build....it was a heavy bike, but loved it. Hovered around 17kg..
 

phillynight

Likes Bikes
Had a bottlerocket. Loved it. A lot to unpack there.
It’s 1.5 HT yes, do you know what headset is in it?
Nice, yeah they are super fun! The seller told me the Transition has a "brand new Hope headset to suit straight steerer" so I am not sure where that leaves me.

Thanks andrew9, I will maybe pull apart the Norco to test fit just to see if the chainguide will work. I am not 100% on the powdercoat, it's really just my fascination with white/black/gold haha I have always dug how the 125 looks. Powdercoating was quoted at $350 so depending on what the parts do to my budget I am still on the fence about leaving it as-is, just figured it was best to powdercoat while it's basically bare instead of stipping it all the way down later.

moorey I am guessing the 160mm was a 26" fork... what do you think about running a 27.5 fork? Is that a bad idea? If I do then I suspect it should be more like 140mm as to not rake out the geometry too badly ?
 

moorey

Ask me about Piriformis syndrome
If you swap out lower headset, you can run tapered fork. Opens up a world of possibilities, and modern Forks. It’s really hard to get anything decent in straight steerer these days, unless you’re prepared to pay silly money. You can run a 27.5 fork. Almost all of my 26 inch bikes run 27.5 forks. Again, it opens up a lot more opportunities to run a modern fork.
 

Flow-Rider

Wheel size expert
Is that an early DJ fork with the 9 or 10mm axle, if so your wheel set will limit the fork option you have too ?
 

moorey

Ask me about Piriformis syndrome
@moorey good to hear you're running 27.5 with no issues... when you say 'If you swap out lower headset, you can run tapered fork' can you link me to what I'd need? Would the bottom bit from something like this? https://www.pushys.com.au/fsa-orbit-1-5-zs-tapered-1-1-8-no-57-headset-anodised-black.html
That for 44 upper/56 Iower. You have 49 top/bottom from memory.
You should need a 49 ec for tapered (1 1/2”)lower only. Your top is fine if it’s for straight steerer. I’ll link to one later if I get a chance.
 

fatboyonabike

Eats Squid
what do you classify as "stupid expensive" for a set of forks
you can get a set of Manitou Mattoc Pro forks for a whisker over $500....IMHO is the best bang for your buck!
 

phillynight

Likes Bikes
@moorey cool yeah I appreciate the help mate! I have been searching for more info on both the 2010 125 and the 2006 Bottlerocket, but it seems like manufacturers doesn't really spell out the specs lol:


@fatboyonabike $500 for forks is cool, I'm just not able to spend $1000 on just forks right now, probably will save up and upgrade later, but just need something decent to get rolling.
 
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pink poodle

Our man isn't in the West
This might make for a sweet 26/27.5 mullet build. If you want to stick with 26 inch forks, the mantiou circus has a 130mm model which might suit your needs and it comes with a 110x20mm axle, so you will be able to use your current front wheel. I don't know of many 27.5 forks coming out with a 110x20 axle which is likely to leave you needing a new front wheel. But...130mm may not be enough travel for your plans as per mooreys' advice. Maybe some offset bushings for the shock and an angle set up front. But the $$$ will start to add up.


Which straight steerer size is the new had set for - straight 1 1/8 or straight 1.5? If 1 1/8, then this headset option that should work with the 49mm ID:

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