The 'Dale is polished alu, not chrome.
This was in fact the very first 'proper' mountainbike that I bought. At the time, I also had the chance to get my hands on a complete XTR groupset, not the M900, but the M950, at a 30% discount. So that was the original buildup. The cranks are serving on my DH bike, I had them anodized black to go with the frame. The other set of M950 cranks that I have are in polished form on the Digger.
I had my first experiences with suspension on this bike, with a Votec double crown air fork. It was air sprung AND air damped, worked very well in fact. And quite light, can you imagine +/- 1600gr. for a double crown fork, incl. steerer clamp ...
I also used this bike as a bike messenger in Antwerp, and it's seen a few accidents in that time. The worst one was when I was hit by a car from the right at +/- 50-60kmh/h right on the rear axle. My right wrist was shattered to pieces, had to be fixed with 3 pins. The worst damage to the bike was that the rear end was out of line by +/- 1cm. But apparently perfectly parallel with the front wheel, I could still ride it no-handed. I've had this corrected, so the back end is in line again. The only visible damage left is a small dent on the right seatstay.
Another one is when a cab suddenly decided to take a right turn right in front of me. I hit the front wheel of the cab at full speed (35-40km/h.), flew over the hood, left some flesh on the tarmac. Absolutely no damage to the bike, fork and front wheel (one of the first wheelsets I built myself, we're talking early nineties here) straight as an arrow.
I guess you can say this is one tough frame.
As for this buildup, I had a few M900 parts lying aroung, gathering dust for a few years, together with the frame. I didn't want to sell frame or M900 parts, so I decided to put the parts on the KillerV. I thought it would make a nice 'city' bike. I've tried to carry the polished theme through as much as possible, apart from the headset which I had left from a steel Sunn frame. Hence the polished Spécialités TA chainrings ...
Note to the puritans here: I didn't set out to restore a bike to it's original state, I just wanted to put together a nice bike with some nice parts.
And for those who wonder about the balloon tires: I need them to provide some comfort for my old body on the harsh streets of Antwerp
. It sucks riding not suspended at all (especially on such a stiff and harsh frame as this) when you're used to 150-200mm. of suspension ...