Muddymoles mountain biking in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

1998 Marin Muirwoods

Posted by Matt | March 17, 2006 | 6 comments so far

Matt's Muirwoods
I feel very nostalgic about this bike as it was the first ‘proper’ MTB I owned.

It’s covered a fair few miles now and been out to the Alps (who says you need discs!). The riding position has always been compromised by my naivety at the time I bought it as its a 19″ frame and has little standover height. I guess the 17″ frame would have been better but at the time the trend was very much for a stretched out XC type of ride, with narrow bars and so on.

Since January 2003 it took a bit of a back seat as I concentrated on the Rift Zone but riding it on a few occasions confirmed what a fundamentally good frame it had.

Constructed out of steel, the current material of choice, it had strength and a lot of life about it which made me think about building it up into a lightweight, efficient trail bike using some of the best of todays components.

So, I took the plunge and invested in a full LX groupset for the bike as the most economical way forward. Having recently bought some Mavic 317 disc only wheels for the RZ meant that I had a set of essentially brand new 221s to go on the Muirwoods as well.

After that, a new saddle, substituting a Ritchey ball basher for a WTB Speed Comp and some Easton EA50 2″ risers with Yeti grips hugely improved things and showed the frame to be beautifully flickable on the trails.

OK, so the fork is a massive hindrance and will ultimately cap how much performance I can get out of the bike and being forced to use V brakes as well pretty much forces it into the summer only bracket, but I do think it’s a versatile frame that’s worth hanging onto.

Ultimately, all the components will migrate onto an On-one frame, leaving me with the frame to build up again. And I’m thinking a swift road bike with flat bars, carbon forks and narrow tyres could make an interesting project.

Hopefully this one will run and run.

Muirwoods specification
Component Spec Component Spec
Frame 1998 Marin Muirwoods Headset Diatech
Forks RST 381 polymer 63mm Bars Easton EA50 2″
Front mech Shimano LX Stem Easton EA30 90mm
Rear mech Shimano LX Seatpost Marin
Shifters Shimano LX Saddle WTB Speed Comp
Front brake Shimano LX V-brake Pedals WTB Stealth
Rear brake Shimano LX V-brake Rims Mavic 221
Chain SRAM Hubs Marin Comp
Cassette Shimano LX 9 speed Chainset Shimano LX
Tyres Continental Vertical 2.3    

Filed under Bikes in March 2006


About the author

Matt is one of the founding Molefathers of the Muddymoles, and is the designer and main administrator of the website.

Having ridden a 2007 Orange Five for many years then a 2016 YT Industries Jeffsy 29er, he now rocks a Bird Aether 9 and a Pace RC-627.

An early On-One Inbred still lurks in the back of the stable as a reminder of how things have moved on. You can even find him on road bikes - currently a 2019 Cannondale Topstone 105 SE, a much-used 2011 Specialized Secteur and very niche belt drive Trek District 1.

If you've ever wondered how we got into mountain biking and how the MuddyMoles started, well wonder no more.

There are 6 comments on ‘1998 Marin Muirwoods’

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  1. Muddymoles says:

    My retro bike project

    It may be a bit old in the tooth but a good bike like the 1998 Marin Muirwoods never truly dies. It just gets used in different ways.

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  6. Jake Trotman says:

    Thanks mate ! From an englisman with the same bike you have !

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