Essential MTB Upgrades

If you’ve got an older mountain bike, have looked at the cost of some of the newer ones and frankly thought “I could buy a Ducati for that price, sod that” here’s a couple of bits you can add to freshen up the look.

Pick a Colour Scheme for your MTB Trick Bits

This is going to sound really poncy, but you need to make sure you’re picking the right colours for your steeds extra bits. There is a school of thought that you don’t need to do this – but it’s like most things in life, the ones which have the most impact are probably considered and not just randomly thrown together. Saying that, it’s your bike so do what you want.

My Specialized is gold and black – you can always pick three colours. I chose red as it goes so well with the black and isn’t overpowering enough to knock out the gold highlights on the bike. Not sure what to pick? You can use some cool online tools like this colour picker.

MTB Tyres

These are obviously pretty standard. What actually got me on the road (no pun intended) to pick the red colour scheme was the tyres I bought.

Panaracer Fire XC Pro TLC Folding MTB Tyre
Panaracer Fire XC Pro TLC Folding MTB Tyre

A big fan of the Panaracer Smokes back in the 90’s I was delighted to see they were still going – albeit in a more modern format. The Panaracer Fire XC Pro TLC Folding MTB Tyre.

I’ve also bought some Maxxis Minion DHR II 3C EXO TR Folding Tyre to try out. Not as cool in terms of colour, but they do look well knarly.

If you’ve not got tubeless tyres, remember to consider getting some decent inner tubes. The only punctures I’ve ever had have all been down to one thing, Hawthorne bushes – these must be abundant on the Wirral. I’ve had other cyclists recommend Slime Inner Tubes as a way to mitigate this issue.

Hope Seat Clamp

Bars

Grips

Bolts and Washers

Did I spend forever trying to get hold of some nice red bolts and washers?! Yes – literally these don’t seem to be a thing. For a start I have no idea what the different classification of bolts on a MTB is. This was a learning curve. It’s mainly M5 btw.

red M5 bolt and red washer for MTB
Red M5 bolt and red washer for MTB

These are used in various place such as the water bottle holders and some other bits. Looks like they’re also used for the stem / handlebar attachment. Just make sure you get the right length – the ones holding on my brakes looked like normal M5 bolts but turned out they’re not – I’ve still no idea what they actually are. You’ve also got bolts holding your disk brake on (see below Rotor bolts) and entirely random ones holding on the brake callipers. I’ve no idea what these ones are and can’t find red ones at the moment.

I had to buy the bolts and washers separately – figure that out.

Here's one of the random places you'll need an M5 bolt and washer on a MTB
Here’s one of the random places you’ll need an M5 bolt and washer on a MTB

Bottle Holder

Valve Caps

Rotor Bolts

These are an easy win – though they can be quite hidden behind the rest of the bike bits. They’re also super cheap which is a win. Remember to use a torque wrench.

Red Rotor Bolts for MTB
Red Rotor Bolts for MTB

Cable Ends

Pedals

Nukeproof Horizon Pro Downhill Flat Pedals