AKA Staff Bikes

Stephens Bike[s]

Most of our bikes come in one door and leave hours later with their happy owners. Some stay a little longer and become part of the family. These bikes are our ‘projects’.

I recently took in an old GT [see below] and loved it so much that when a Plant X frame came my way I just had to build it up.

Planet X - Jack Flash

Planet X – Jack Flash

The frame is from about 2005 I think and although well used is in great condition. I pulled together a pile of bits from under the work bench and built this beast! Its a very tough frame, the power transfer is amazing and the ride is fast and comfortable. The rough spec is as follows;

Rough Spec?

  • 70mm 6deg riser stem,
  • 780mm ally riser bars
  • no name grips
  • Magura MT4 levers connected to MT2 calipers
  • XTR 9 speed shifter on the right
  • Rock Shox Recon Silver forks
  • Thompson lay back 27.2 seat post
  • Race Face cranks and BB
  • Race Face bash  guard and chain guide
  • Race Face 48 tooth chain wheel
  • Easton XC One wheels
  • Continental Race King 2.2 tyres

Pros? Very strong.

Cons? A little heavy?

Is it for sale? hmmm make me an offer!


1997 GT Tempest built up for fast street riding.

1997 GT Tempest built up for fast street riding.

The GT as it arrived.

The GT as it arrived.

What is it? A GT Tempest from about 1997.

What is it for? Fun. Call it an experiment in nostalgia. Before the days of suspension we all rode rigid steel bikes, for me that progressed to a steel hard tail [RidgeBack Team TX 1993] with an AMP F3 front suspension then full sus. This is my idea of what we would be riding now if suspension had never been invented.

What are we doing to it? Plans include a shorter stem and more rise in the bars plus a bit more width, a dropper seat post and a better rear mech and some larger volume tyres.

1997 GT Tempest with Girvin Vector 2s

1997 GT Tempest with Girvin Vector 2s

Rough Spec?

  • 100mm 6deg riser stem,
  • 600mm low rise bars
  • Onza Fly Guy forks 1998 Girvin Vector 2 forks. Pic right.
  • No-name cranks
  • RaceFace wide/narrow single chain ring, 38t
  • RaceFace bash guard and chain guide
  • RaceFace Chester pedals
  • 8 speed LX cassette and deraileur
  • 8 speed XTR thumb shifter
  • Magura rimstops [HS11?] front and rear

Pros? Its fast, responsive, light, simple.

Cons? The modern components, and my trials efforts are showing how bendy the frame is. perhaps the natural evolution is actually towards the ultra low Onza style trials bikes?

Is it for sale? No, but if you offered me £500 you could take it away and I would build another one!

Marias Bike

Tip – Mouse over to see the refinished bike, click to see how it was done.

Marias shopper

Marias shopper

What is it? This is a 1987 Ladies Step-through. A Raleigh Caprice.

What is it for? This is Marias bike, she will use it for everything!

What are we doing with it? The pictures here are exactly as the bike arrived. We could have left it like that but to be fair first gear didnt work and it was grossly over geared. The brakes didnt do much and the front wheel bearings were falling out. Since these pics were taken we have mechanically restored it, spec below.

The next job is a re-finish for the frame using the products we stock.

Rough spec?

  • 26 x 1 3/8 ally rims with stainless steel, plain gauge spokes
  • New alloy front hub
  • rebuilt Sturmey Archer 3 speed AW hub gearbox
  • New cables for everything
  • New period correct ‘Red Dot’ brake levers
  • Rear Rack

Pros? Maria loves it.

Cons? None. its not even heavy!

Is it for sale? No, she would break my legs.

UPDATE! Marias Bike is now painted – blog page here.

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