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The Klein is 7 years old this year, and what with a 5 day-a-week training schedule to (try and) keep to, now seems like a good time to get in some backup. Buying a new bike would be far too easy, so I've gone the second hand route for a frame. Add in a "reasonable" budget for some quality bits, and let's see what happens...

First the frame. One week looking at the Singletrack Classifieds was all it took to spot a 2005 (20th Anniversary Edition) 16" Rocky Mountain Blizzard frame, only 5 months out of the shop. The top tube might be too small for me, but I only figured this out after I'd bought it, so here's hoping a long stem will fix things.

The original 2005 Blizzard looked like this:

It's a Reynolds 853 steel hardtail, hand made and hand painted in Canada, with a bonkers RRP of 600 just for the frame. Luckily my second hand frame came in at less than half that price. It's in good condition, check it out...

20th Anniversary Edition badge

Black and white simplicity. The rear is disc only

The grease in that headset smells great

Neat welds, sparkly black paint

The chap who sold me the frame also had Race Face carbon seat post and handlebars for sale, so I snapped up those too. The bars are in good condition but the seat post has a nasty scratch on it. Maybe if I ignore it it'll go away.

Seems a shame to just sit on it

Matching logos - that's the most important thing after all

Mmm, carbon fibre weave

Wiggle have delivered the components, and Merlin have delivered the custom-built wheels. Rock on!
Here's what it all looks like before I trash it...

Silver and black is so this years look, darling

New wheels are so sexy. Discs will have to wait for pay day.

Anyone for XT?

Good old rapidfire shifters

XT short cage rear mechs are great

Hollowtech II crankset, 170mm for my little legs

Integrated bottom bracket

The hollowness of Hollowtech II

Pay day has been and gone and the brakes are here! A brand spanking new set of Avid Juicy 5s, 185mm front and 160mm rear. In the words of Spud, "To brake is to admit defeat". But should I feel the need to wave the white flag, these are still the worlds best looking budget hydraulic disc brakes.

A boxed set of one-fingered stoppage

185mm rotor. But is it art?

Yes, I have decided

Front forks in actually turning up shocker! "In stock and ready to dispatch" my arse, Winstanley Bikes. They're about as new as you can get though, assembled in Taiwan less than a month ago (but 2 weeks after I actually ordered them).

Big black and rigid with a smooth action.
Just like my, err, other coil forks

Compression damping adjustment and lockout.
Lockout is very easy to use

U-Turn adjuster at 130mm for big Northern rocky downhills

Wound down to 85mm for big uphills, endo practice, or falling off

A highly scientific method for determining what length of stem I need: plug in the forks, sit on bike, and imagine where the bars should be. Verdict? I need something looong. A 130mm Ritchey Comp is ordered.

No stoppers, no go-ers, no steering

Build day! It's great sunny weather, I only have a moderate hangover, and there's a 4 hour X-List playing on Xfm. On with the shorts, off with the shirt, and let's do some half naked bike building.

Headset installed, forks cut down to size, bars and stem attached

Discs bolted on, shoulders getting sunburnt about now

Transmission all wired up, whole back sunburnt now

1, 2, skip a few, 99, 100. Ready!

If that isn't the sexiest handlebar hardware you've ever seen, you're wrong

The completed article. It even looks fast standing still.

First Ride : More pics and analysis

Spec Sheet
I've tried to go for a selection of quality kit without breaking the bank (too much).
Original spec vs Fozard 2007 spec:

 Original SpecMy Spec
FrameReynolds 853 CromolyReynolds 853 Cromoly (2nd hand)
Frame Weight2.0 kg / 4.4 lb (18.5")A bit less (16")
ForkMarzocchi MX Pro w/ETARockshox Revelation 426 Coil U-Turn
Front Travel105mm85 - 130mm adjustable on-the-fly
Head SetFSA OrbitHope XC (2nd hand)
StemRACE FACE Deus XCRitchey Comp
HandlebarRACE FACE Deus XCRACE FACE Next Carbon (2nd hand)
BrakesShimano XT Disc (160mm/160mm)    Avid Juicy 5 (185mm/160mm)
Brake LeversShimano XT DualAvid Juicy 5
ShiftersShimano XT DualShimano XT Rapidfire
GearingShimano XTShimano XT
Cranks & ChainringsRACE FACE Deus X-TypeShimano XT Hollowtech II
Bottom BracketRACE FACE Deus X-TypeShimano XT Hollowtech II
PedalsCrank Bros. Egg Beater CXShimano M540
HubsShimano XTShimano XT
Cog-SetShimano XTShimano XT
ChainShimano HG73-9Shimano HG93-9
SpokesDT CompDT Comp DB Black
RimsMavic XM 317 DiscDT 4.2 Disc
TyresIRC Serac XC 2.1"Bontrager Jones AC Folding (from the shed) 
Seat PostRACE FACE Next XCRACE FACE Next Carbon (2nd hand)
SaddleSelle Italia C2Bontrager Race Lux (2nd hand unused)