How to choose what to upgrade next?

Hi, I got a new bike 2nd hand yesterday. It's a Giant GSR FS with the extra small frame. Not the best bike in the world I know but it will do me for now as I haven't got any money.
I haven't done any proper rides on it yet so haven't really had much time to asess it but I was just wondering what people think is the first thing I should upgrade that will make the most difference to the performance.
I was thinking probably the forks because the RST 191 CL forks it has as standard arent exactly fantastic but wanted to know how people decide what to upgrade and what are the most likely components.

General notes on the bike. It is terrifying compared to the one I just got rid of. It was an old Raleigh my dad gave me and the new one is terrifying in comparison. It is so much quicker and 10 times more maneuverable.
It will take some getting used to due to the tiny frame (Its only 14") but so far it seems to be a lot better.


Resting in suspended Animation
Knobblies --> slicks.


Free-wheeling into oblivion...
oh yeah, I've only just started cycling again and was wondering what the little 14inch frame is designed for?

Oompa loompas


New Member
Bromley, Kent
The best single upgrade is tyres as said before. then wheels, then after that it's your own personal choice in my opinion. Mine is to get a more comfortable yet stylish/lighter saddle.


Married to Night Train
Salford, UK
How come?

If you intend to cycle mainly on the road, tarmac, or even just slightly rough cycle track, then knobbly tyres will slow you down - the knobbles are designed to give grip in mud - on a smooth surface they'll give less grip and more resistance. Change them (assuming it has knobbly tyres, probably will if it's an MTB) for something with just a normal tread - Schwalbe Big Apples are good. And keep them pumped up well, both to improve the rolling quality and prevent pinch punctures.

Also, if you're only on tarmac, can you lock the forks? Too much give at the front will also waste effort.

Of course, if you intend to ride mainly off-road MTB style, the above don't apply.


New Member
I would suggest that the best strategy is to wait a bit - give yourself some time to get used to the bike and then you'll be in a better position to decided what, if anything, would benefit from being changed/upgraded. For example, you may find that the tyres are unsuitable for the type of riding you'll be doing, or perhaps you don't get on well with the saddle. Of course, there could be other bits that require replacement if they are nearing the end of their working life.

If you're not sure about the sizing then without giving it time it could prove foolish to throw money at upgrading it if you end up looking for another bike.



New Member
I haven't got any cash at the moment so I'm talking about in the future so I've definately got enough time to get used to the feel of the bike.

Unfortunately you cannot lock the forks which is very annoying. When you pedal really hard the front end is all over the place. Not brilliant for climbing hills either. I think the forks will definately be one of the first things to be upgraded.

To be honest the 14 inch frame I get on quite well with. It is a bit too small for me but i quite like it. It is incredibly maneuverable and doesn't strain me in any way from awkward positions etc. (Well it was hurting my back from bending over but that was just because the saddle was too high)

I think the tyres probably will be worth changing. I much prefer off-road cycling but in reality I don't get too much time to do it and find myself going around the city more often than the country.
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