cover hummer bottom bracket

Mountain Bike Building: How to Build Your Dream Ride | The MBA Podcast

On this episode I’m talking bike building, something that’s always been really popular here on the site. I’m currently starting out on a new bike building project so it seemed a good time to cover the basics and talk about how you can do the same yourself.

cover-hummer mountain bike buildThis topic came from the fact that I’ve been toying with a new bike build for a couple of years now, particularly at a UK project, using as much home grown kit as possible. It seems ridiculous that it’s been that long, but there was a small mishap inbetween that put it all back a little. Well, now’s the time and I’ve managed to get hold of a second hand Cove Hummer Titanium frame in excellent condition.

I know I was talking about UK parts, but the OnOne 456 Titanium that I’ve been coveting just isn’t getting any closer. I don’t really understand On-One’s approach to sales – I’ve been waiting for this to come back in stock for months now, but they’re no closer. Even speaking to one of the guys on the phone, they haven’t a clue when they’ll be getting more frames in. Anyway, years back I had been dreaming about a Titanium Cover Hummer, and then one just dropped into my lap. Can’t complain.

So, next step is the build. I have just about all of the components that I need, I just need to put them together. I’ve already had the headset fitted (I talk in the podcast about the fact that that’s the only part I don’t do myself, partly due to a lack of the specialist kit, and partly because it’s so cheap and easy to have it done) and my new bottom bracket just arrived. That means I can get started on the drive train.

mountain bike build hummerI want to put together a set of videos based on this build, so look out for those appearing over the coming weeks. I’ll run through how to put all the components together and show how easy most of it is. My aim is to encourage as many people as possible to try putting together their own steed. It’s just amazing how much more ownership and attachment you have over that bike when you’ve put that much effort into it. It’s worth it, I promise you.

A Question for You

My question for you on this episode is, what’s putting you off building your own bike? Have you simply no interest at all in the work involved, or would you like to but just don’t know where to start? Drop a comment in below about what you want to know about bike building. I look forward to hearing from you!


Colin started mountain biking in the early 2000s and has haphazardly, and with barely increasing skill, dragged his bike around the majority of Scotland's trail centres since then. Colin has oodles of hard earned experience in how NOT to do things - listen, be warned and don't repeat his mistakes...   More about Colin... Google+ Colin

4 Responses

  1. Mac says:

    I’m new to mountain biking. I’ve ridden an entry level Jamis hardtail and now I want to build my own single speed bike with 29er wheels. Hubs, spokes, and wheels are what’s holding me back (and money). Should I buy a complete set ready to go or piece it out? I don’t need race light components but I would like a smooth and durable bike. I’d also like to see you post a comprehensive check off list type document of all the parts that go into building a bike so that I don’t miss a part. Maybe it’s already online somewhere and I’ve just missed it. Nice podcast, keep up the good work!

  2. Tom says:

    Just discovered your podcast today, Colin. Nice to listen to a native accent talking about biking. I’ve been toying with the idea of a full-sus, enduro/XC style bike for a while since I’ve been riding my Felt hardtail on some local trails for a while now and this episode inspired me to to think about building my own. I like the idea of being able to build something myself and then enjoy it, rather than go out and get something mid-range at a couple of grand. Although if someone handed my the cash, I don’t know if my patience would hold out, but at the moment (and thinking about cash-flow) a custom build sounds like a brilliant idea! Keep up the good work on the podcast. Any new episodes coming up?

  3. Karan Labra says:

    Hey Colin, Love your voice!

    It’s the first time I’m listening to a podcast on biking and even though I prefer consuming information on Youtube, I absolutely loved it.

  4. Colin says:

    Hey Colin,

    I found your podcast the other day and have been really enjoying the content. The fact that you have such a cool name is also a bonus. Anyhow, I’ve been riding a 2000 Rocky Mountain Element T.O. that I bought used a few years back. My girlfriend and I are getting into some slightly more DH biased trails and the bike just shreds (at my skill level.)

    Being a 15 year old bike, the Rocky is in need of some maintenance. I just acquired a new set of cables to hopefully alleviate a poor shifting situation. Having adjusted and indexed the gears a few times, I figured new cables would be a logical next step (I’m pretty sure they’re the originals.)

    My question to you is, should the cables not fix the problem, I am guessing my rear mech is past its sell-by date. The bike runs XTR 9 speed and I’d like to replace it with the same, or at least XT. If you had this bike and needed to go over it from tip to tail to freshen it up, other than cables and maybe a rear mech, what would you suggest looking at?


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