Kent RCT Upgrades

The industry is coming out with new riding formats and 27.5 looks like a keeper. Here's where you talk it over with other riders.
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Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby SmoothCow » Sun Jun 19, 2016 2:53 pm

I just ordered a Rock Shox XC TK 1 1/8" fork, and i was wondering if it would fit my bicycle.
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby dddd » Sun Jun 19, 2016 4:07 pm

Did you buy the 27.5" (650B) version of the fork?

I looked and saw what looks like a 1-1/8" threadless steerer, not tapered, so I'm sure it will work if you bought the right wheel size option, with un-cut steer tube and if your front brake cable is still long enough.

If your bike has a solid (not quick-release), nutted axle on the front wheel, probably it is 3/8" (9.5mm) diameter so some very minimal enlargement with a file to the fork's dropout slots may be required, which are sized for a 9mm axle. Use the largest diameter round file that will fit, and evenly enlarge (not deepen) the slots, if needed. When/if the axle slides in evenly on both sides with a firm clunk sound is when the slots are big enough for a 3/8" threaded axle, so do not over-enlarge the slots.

Let us know how your new fork works on the RCT!

One more thing to add, your front axle nuts must bear against washers to protect the aluminum fork dropouts, so round washers may need to be purchased to replace the original safety washers.
Maybe the original washers can be ground to a rounder shape?
Adding a couple of washers will also make the nuts easier to grip with a wrench and easier to turn, as long as the axle is long enough. Do not over-tighten the axle nuts, and keep the threads and washers lubricated with oil or grease.
Last edited by dddd on Sun Jun 19, 2016 4:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby Tomcat65 » Sun Jun 19, 2016 4:12 pm

It's going to fit, and you're going to like it :D

It's not exactly a direct bolt on..
You'll have to get the crown race off of your old fork and move it to the new fork.
You'll have to figure out where you want your handlebars, buy spacers and cut the fork's steerer tube. I left mine a little bit long and added a few 5mm spacers on top of my stem.
You need to figure out which disc brake caliper mount you have and if it's different on the new fork, you might have to get a new mount.

After that, you'll be good to go. A good front suspension fork makes the ride very different.
I believe Rock Shox offers different springs for their forks, You might order a heavier, or lighter spring, depending on how it feels when you ride.
A lock out fork is also cool because you can lock it out when hammering down/making speed or climbing. Locked out, the fork stiffens and your pedaling becomes more efficient, as loss to the spring compressing is limited.
You're going to like it :D

I'm actually very interested in your bike. Looking forward to see what you do next!
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby SmoothCow » Wed Jun 22, 2016 10:08 am

The nuts used on my front axle are 15mm, would that make any difference? And the fork is for 650b bikes.
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby Tomcat65 » Wed Jun 22, 2016 3:37 pm

You should be fine.

If the axle tube measured 15mm, you might need a different fork, but you should be fine.
You could actually replace your front axle with a hollow quick release axle, but if you like the solid axle as is, it should add rigidity to the fork. I'm not convinced that a QR axle adds anything more than the convenience of making it easier to remove the wheels. I am pretty well convinced that it adds another failure point. Just my opinion, and by the way, I do have a QR front axle on my Ascension. But I have a new solid axle waiting for me to replace it whenever I get around to it. lol

The extra travel and the controlled rebound damping, are going to impress you right away, if you do any off road riding. Looking forward to reading your impressions.
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby SmoothCow » Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:17 pm

What would I need to convert the front axle to a hollow quick release axle?
Would these work?
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001B ... D58ELY2BCA
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000A ... KCH6R81QUN
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby Tomcat65 » Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:29 pm

Looks like you have it figured out already :)
All you need to do, is disasemble, reuse your bearings (Now is the time to re-pack with good grease)
The only tools you might need, would be cone wrenches, to set the bearing load.
Image
Those bearing cones have a very narrow shoulder. If you have an old cheapy wrench and a grinder, about 10 minutes with a cup of water, you can make your own cone wrench lol..
The outside jam nuts work fine with regular wrenches
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby dddd » Fri Jun 24, 2016 11:30 am

Wait a minute, the front axle with the 15mm nuts possibly uses the thicker axle diameter of 3/8" or 9.5mm.

That will be ok if this new axle assembly is an exact fit to your existing hub, but what about the dust shields?

There are dust shields that press into the hubshell, and there are dust shields that press onto the axle cones, but one way or the other you will need to have the right kind of shields with just the right size to press-fit into or onto the hubshell or the cones, and this might be complicated by the new axle's smaller 9mm diameter and the new, matching 9mm cones not having dust shields pressed onto them.

I've pressed dust shields off of one cone and onto another (in order to upgrade a rear hub's axle to 10mm solid), but the press fit isn't universal as far as the various cone diameters from different applications and vendors.

At least this new axle assembly is inexpensive, so no great loss if it doesn't quite match what is needed.

The nice thing about quick-release axles is that they tend to keep the wheel settled into the dropouts when the lever is tightened. Nutted axles often cause the axle to turn and wobble off center a bit, which then throws the brake caliper out of alignment with the rim or the disc. It thus helps to use double washers under each nut, and to keep the axle threads and the washers oiled or greased, so the axle stays settled in the slot while each nut is tightened. Also, I tighten each nut a little at a time until the axle is tight enough not to turn, then fully tighten. I try to keep the bike upright and with added weight pushing down on the stem or saddle, to help the axle stay fully settled in both slots while the nuts get tightened.
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby SmoothCow » Fri Jun 24, 2016 2:51 pm

So apparently my neighbor has a full-on bike shop in his garage! I asked for a bit of help, and he ended up fully replacing my front shock. He tuned my gearing, fixed my brakes, gave me a carbon fiber Saddle with a post, and gave me a specialized aluminum straight bar with stem. He gave me a few biking tips, and told me to come back next week (he didn't want to accept any money for all this.) I ordered some Clarks M2 Hydraulic disc breaks, and he offered to install them, AND gave me some SRAM X-7 shifters.
The bike feels completely different. It rides as good, if not better than my brothers Giant Talon 4 2016.
I attached a few images of my bike as of right now.
Thank you for all the support!
Attachments
MTB Shop.jpg
MTB Shop.jpg (225.37 KiB) Viewed 1353 times
MTB Complete.jpg
MTB Complete.jpg (355.06 KiB) Viewed 1353 times
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Re: Kent RCT Upgrades

Postby dddd » Fri Jun 24, 2016 6:17 pm

I'd guess that fork by itself is enough to make it feel like a new bike!
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