There is an indoor mountain bike park along the lines of Ray's MTB park being built near me (though I also road trip to rays and rent a bike). Most of the riding here seems suited for a dirt jumper.

I don't own a dirt jumper. However, I have a 26er setup for XC riding that I havn't really been using since I got a 29er. It's an older specialized rockhopper with a rockshox suspension fork, bb5 disc brakes, mountain triple, and 9-speed cassette. The frame is a bit small for me.

What adjustments or parts swaps should I do to make this bike more suitable to this style of riding which includes jumps, rollers, pump tracks, and technical skill sections with narrows, teeter totters, etc...

  • Get a shorter seat post? Save a couple grams of weight? hehe… or shucks, just saw it in half if you don't foresee needing it again! Great Q, very interested in what comes up! How far do you wanna go? Are there any compatible 20" rims that you could use your Discs on ? I don't even know if that's possible… sounds fun though! Sep 27, 2012 at 18:08

2 Answers 2


I agree with the tips jimirings has stated, but if possible I would sell the Rockhopper and pick up a second hand jump bike - they're simpler bikes and park oriented ones rarely see the outdoors so tend to be in a better condition than their dirt brethren.

The Rockhopper's geometry is wholly unsuitable for street/park riding, it's too tall, designed for 100mm forks, and has long chainstays; which all adds up to bike that doesn't want to bunny hop and struggles to to be 360-ed. It is designed for a completely different use and environment. And I say this with experience, I used to own one, and I also tried converting my sisters to a street style - absolute failure.

  • I agree 100%. I rode on a converted XC bike for a while before finally moving up to a purpose-built jumper. The difference was night and day. I probably should have stressed the last sentence of my answer more. Glad someone else did. :)
    – jimchristie
    Oct 2, 2012 at 13:13

Convert it to a single speed and slam the seatpost. Those will be the biggest things. Add a bash guard up front too for when your rear wheel falls off the teeter-totters and skinnies.

A shorter stem would be a good addition too. It'll improve the steering for those technical sections.

You might also consider a rigid fork. Suspension isn't really necessary for that type of stuff and can actually be a hindrance. That's why trials and bmx bikes have rigid forks. Surly makes a suspension corrected fork. Even with the correction, your front end will sit a bit lower than it does now, but you get used to it.

You might want rim brakes too (if your bike is set up for either) for the same reason that you'll want a bash guard. You only have to land on a brake rotor once to really mess it up. You can true them to a certain degree, but they're never the same.

If you stick with the disc brakes, you could try smaller wheels. 24" perhaps. But if you're going to go that far it's probably a better investment to just sell it (since you haven't been using it anyway) and buy a bike that's built for that type of riding.

In fact, if you're going to be riding at this park more than once in a blue moon, you'd probably be happier doing that anyway.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.