Upgrade Marley's Bike!

So I’m getting sponsored for a bike packing trip + film…and the sponsoring company has requested photos of my bike and all the parts I’d like to upgrade.

Here’s the email they sent me “The first and most important thing I’ll need from you is detailed photos of your bikes so that the Shimano people can see the components (derailleur, brakes, seat, crank). Anything that isn’t Shimano they can replace with top of the line parts.
You can go ahead and choose Shimano shoes, Pearl Izumi clothes, and if you need, whatever Lazer helmet you’d like. Just put together a list + address and I can send it along.”

So…let’s have some fun with this. Here’s the bike I’ll be taking…what should I upgrade?!?


i have nothing to add but hell yeah


“Give me one of everything with XTR in the part name.”


Definitely the brakes and the cranks, then if you get new cranks then you’ll probably need a whole drivetrain…

The real money move would be getting a built dynamo wheel


I have a dynamo on there already…but I think the hub might be dying…not a bad idea though.

GRX 46-30 crank.
Ditch those pedals and take a pic with some plastic junkers, then ask for some more pedals.
Hydraulic brakes- XTR obvs.
PRO dropper post? I’d do it.


yeah a hybrid GRX/XTR drivetrain with wet brakes, new crank, clutch dangler would go a long way


Seems like you’d want the GRX crank and pusher, the 105-level front shifter, XT/XTR rear shifter, dangler and 10-40-something cassette, XTR/XT wet brakes.

Something like that?

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Also don’t forget to ask for some new disc rotors!


You didn’t say what brand it the dynamo is, but if it’s not Shimano they should want to give you a new appropriately-branded one. And if it is a Shimano and it’s dying or even just lower level it sounds like they might still want to give you a nice new one.

Definitely also new hydro brakes and new blingy drivetrain

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Marley, do you have a submit a parts list with Shimano part numbers or just a general request and they will fill in the gaps?

PRO makes seatposts, including a 27.2 adventure nerd bike dropper

absolutely get new hydraulic levers/calipers/rotors and the GRX crankset

you can YOLO on whichever fancy new shifters/dangler/pusher/chain/cassette they wanna promote for this


Obviously XTR di2 2x11 shifters with either the XTR crank or GRX crank.
XTR/XT hydro brakes.
New wheelset with latest dynohub .


Probably don’t want to deal with the arglebargle of retrofitting Di2 to a Surly. That’s a dozen of hard to predict wire lengths and connecting gizmos to order, a lot is going to be out of stock, and then you have to actually install it

Shimano USA doesn’t make OEM wheelbuilds with dynohubs, so that might be hard too

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All of the above…and a fishing reel.


Hm, I thought Shimano USA would do all the wrenching for @capn_pants…? But then maybe the GRX di2 would be easier with the XTR shifters? Since they stupidly don’t make any flat bar alternatives in the GRX-range…

And that part with the OEM wheelbuilds is kinda sad.


IMO at some point, it will be easier to start with a brand new frame and build from there, rather than have to un-build your current ride then re-build it back up. Especially if you are paying for the build labor yourself.

Are you committed to that particular Surly frame? Because if you decide to start with a new frameset, then that opens up possibility of getting something with thru-axles which would influence what wheels/hubs Shimano wants you to show off.


Keep the water bottle.

Oh, you should also consider these purple grips while you are upgrading everything!