Upgrade, replace or new bike?


New Member
I'm looking to join my local rad club as part of a 12month plan to build endurance for a multi day MTB race.

I have a little used Carrera Vanquish running 10speed; my question is, is it worth upgrading components on the bike for this purpose, replacing them or getting a new bike?

I dont have £,00000000's to spend as the MTB budget is getting bigger...

I like the Carrera, it fits in the leg wonderfully even if it is about an inch long on top, despite replacement shorter stem etc.

My biggest issue is with the gears, I feel the groupset is poor quality, and HATE having only 10speed!

After that, the wheels (rims are ok but the hubs stink) and maybe a carbon fork?

I'd also be interested in any thoughts on shorter stems, my replacement is a Bontrenger...



New Member
This bike will be be fitted with a freewheel hub and you can fit up to a 7 speed 14 - 28 tooth freewheel hub on it. Your rear derailleur should be fine to use, but if you have a 5 speed indexed shifter in on the handlebars you would need for a 7 speed shifter.

You could go 8 speed but that would mean a new rear hub or wheel to accept a cassette instead of a freewheel. That would then allow you to fit 7 - 10 speed on the rear hub using a casette.

7 Speed freewheel : £8-75
80.jpgSHIMANO 7 Speed MTB Freewheel - 14 - 28 Tooth

7 Speed STI shilfter / Break lever combo : £19-95
80.jpg Shimano Acera Mountain Bike Gear & Brakes STi 21 Speed

Cassette removal tool: £5
80.jpgCyclo Bike tool shimano UG cycle freewheel cog remover

You could always replace the rear derailleur with one of these : +- £10

80.jpgShimano Tourney rear cycle derailleur mech D-fit TX31D


80.jpgShimano Tourney rear cycle derailleur mech H-fit TX31B

To go 21 speed you would need to replace the front chainset and derailleur :

Square taper triple chainset : £13
80.jpgBICYCLE TRIPLE CHAINSET 48/38/28 Toothed Rings - BLACK

Front Derailleur : £6-50
80.jpgShimano Bike Bicycle Front Mech Derailleur Dual Pull

Crank puller : £4-50

80.jpgBike cycle tool crank extractor remover puller pedal

You would also need a new chain : £5-90
80.jpgKMC Z51 6/7/8 Speed Bike Cycle Bicycle Chain NEW

Total price : £68-60

These are all entry level components. They will get your gears upgraded and if looked after will last for 1000's of miles of riding. You could always buy more expensive components, but if on a tight budget these components will get you by with your current wheel and frame.

Now compare the £70 pound upgrade to buying a new bike?
Hope this helps.


New Member
Just re read your post, I see you have a Vanquish, in that case the STI's would not work as they fit flat MTB bars. Road bike STIs are very expensive... from £100 for new 7 speeds. I put together a gear replacement package thinking you had an old MTB, sorry.


New Member
Top response, thanks a lot.

TBH, if I could take her up to 14spd, reduce the stem length even further and maybe lighten the front end with carbon forks and lighter bars I'd forgo the need to buy new.

If my memory serves the bike cost 600 odd, so I'd still be well under costs, and I gues an upgrade a similar amount for a newer bike if not much more...


Fleet, Hants
Though it is tempting, the cost of upgrading bits and bobs quickly adds up, before you know it you are over £100-£200. I think you should consider a second hand bike instead, there are lots on eBay that are worth looking at.

I started upgrading my old mountain bike for road use but I stopped after £50 realising what was happening. I went for a proper road bike instead (admittedly brand new) and now regret wasting money on the old MTB, it was silly in retrospect. Good luck!


New Member
emulsifier12 said:
Just re read your post, I see you have a Vanquish, in that case the STI's would not work as they fit flat MTB bars. Road bike STIs are very expensive... from £100 for new 7 speeds. I put together a gear replacement package thinking you had an old MTB, sorry.
I noticed that, dont worry. The bones of what you said made sence.

I guess the crux for me comes when I'm looking at spending more on upgrading than I could on a decent second hand bike of higher spec.

I know verry little about road bikes in comparison to MTB's; which is why part of me is happier sticking with the devil 'i know (and upgrading) rather than jumping in with both feet on something I dont, particularly as its only really a training bike or training tool and not a toy....


Legendary Member
Within 25 miles of you for under the ton...





'course these might or might not be your size, and might or might not stay below the ton, but they do give an idea what's out there. Generally speaking, though I do like a good fettle, I'd say you're almost always better off buying a second hand bike than upgrading. Bits can be surprisingly costly. I bought an old Dawes for £53 that came with a full Shimano 600 groupset - I've since seen the chainset alone go for upwards of £70 on ebay.
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