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I have a Marin small steel frame MTB circa 1997. Is it possible to upgrade to today's parts such as 10 speed derailleurs and shifters. I'm pretty sure disk brakes are out of the question. If so any suggestions on where to start.

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  • Start by costing up what you want to upgrade, you may quickly find that a new bike will be cheaper, as parts can be disproportionately expensive when bought piecemeal. You're probably right about disc brakes - the fork (front) and frame (rear) need to be able to accommodate a disk brake, and if not... – PeteH May 16 '15 at 16:20
  • That shipped with an 8 speed shimano hub, so you could go 10 speed, but cost-wise, you'd likely be better off getting a new bike if you want to take it mountain biking. Suspension and what not have come a long way over the past ~20 years, and you'll likely have to do things like repack hubs and other maintenance to the existing bike to get it to ridable condition, if it hasn't been used ina while. – Batman May 17 '15 at 14:25
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As others have mentioned you'd be cheaper getting a new bike than upgrading. The frame also won't support disks, although if you replaced the fork you could fit a front disk.

Importantly the geometry of a bike has changed quite a lot since those days. I've got a marin pine mountain from around that time and it feels really unstable compared to a modern hardtail and is not corrected for a suspension fork.

However to directly answer your question I think if you replace the entire drivetrain it should work. The rear hub spacing should be 135mm.

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