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  1. #1
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    bronson vs trance vs burner as far as sustained climbing and all around efficiency?

    Haven't ridden any of these and haven't visited any stores willing to let me demo them but I'm still looking at all of them and looking for feedback (if you have another favorite in this category that climbs especially well I'm listening....). The Turner salesman likes to point out all the zerk fittings but when I read about Turner bikes on forums and reviews I've never read where having them made any difference in longevity/increased fun factor. I have a XC bike now and am looking for something 'more' capable of negotiating rocks, fallen tree parts and harsh dried rocky streams and such. But climbing is my weakness so I can't ever stray away from a bike that isn't especially good at keeping traction on rutted/rooted climbs and who's gearing and geometry isn't suited to be very efficient in the steep climb mode. Any direct personal experience feedback is appreciated. Thanks!

  2. #2
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    All of those bikes will handle nasty terrain better than an XC bike. You're going to get answers saying all those bikes do this and that great and that's the truth. Climbing is much more about the riders skill and fitness. Any modern trail bike, especially the ones you mention, will do just about everything great. None of those are overly slack and all have well designed suspension. Personally, I'm a fan of the Bronson and VPP.

    If your current bike is a 26" any larger wheeled bike will help your climbing ability.

  3. #3
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    The turner bushings with the seek fittings will last many years. My old 5 Spot was 4 years old when I opened them up and they were in great shape. I don't think Turner can be beat for longevity. I have not been on either but I would stick with Turner unless the SC road significantly better.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  4. #4
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    I assume the burner must kick the crap out of the bronson in terms of climbing ability. I rode my friends bronson and on climbs it felt no more efficient than my more FR oriented slayer. It was a long time ago but I remember riding my buddy's burner and being absolutely shocked by how fast it was on climbs.

  5. #5
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    Uphills are my weakness too and I'm getting a Bronson - best uphill riding bike I've ridden and I've been on a few . FWIW I was riding my DW link bike the same day I rode the Bronson.

    To each their own!

    G MAN
    "There's two shuttles, one to the top and one to the hospital" I LOVE this place!!!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jselwyn View Post
    All of those bikes will handle nasty terrain better than an XC bike. You're going to get answers saying all those bikes do this and that great and that's the truth. Climbing is much more about the riders skill and fitness. Any modern trail bike, especially the ones you mention, will do just about everything great. None of those are overly slack and all have well designed suspension. Personally, I'm a fan of the Bronson and VPP.

    If your current bike is a 26" any larger wheeled bike will help your climbing ability.
    Thanks. If the logic is, all else being roughly equal, the larger the wheel size the more it helps in sustained climbs, would I be better off reconsidering 29 inch tires? And yes, my current bike is a 26 inch one. Thx.

  7. #7
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    The current long travel 29ers are great bikes. Def something to look at. They are very confidence inspiring up and down and hugely capable bikes.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jselwyn View Post
    The current long travel 29ers are great bikes. Def something to look at. They are very confidence inspiring up and down and hugely capable bikes.
    What do you think about the new salsa horsethief vs a dw link like the turner flux?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucmac View Post
    What do you think about the new salsa horsethief vs a dw link like the turner flux?
    Well, moot point, I just bought the turner sultan. :-)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucmac View Post
    What do you think about the new salsa horsethief vs a dw link like the turner flux?
    Well, doesn't matter now, I just bought the turner sultan. :-)

  11. #11
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    Have a look at KRob's thoughts. He rode the Trance and Bronson at Inter/Outerbike. I think he's ridden the Burner. The reviews can be accessed fr the MTBR homepage. Joi could even PM him. Have fun!

  12. #12
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    I bought a burner about a month ago. I'm still learning what the bike is capable of -- and its a lot more than the rider. I am most amazed at its climbing ability. It goes downhill incredibly well -- best I've ever been on. But, it is when I'm climbing that I am most amazed by the bike. Truly remarkable. I rode a Sultan last year in Moab, and the Burner kills it. I think the Bronson is in the same league for sure -- I'm a big Santa Cruz fan, but I am thrilled with my first Turner. The Burner is for real folks. Put it on your dream bike list.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    The turner bushings with the seek fittings will last many years. My old 5 Spot was 4 years old when I opened them up and they were in great shape. I don't think Turner can be beat for longevity.
    The SC VPP has zerk fittings in the lower link. I replaced my bearings after 4yrs on a Nomad riding year round for two of those years in the PNW. Could have easily got another year out of them, but I was overhauling the bike so I went for it.

    BTW - Santa Cruz has a lifetime free bearing warranty. Just send them in when they are worn out and get a new set free.

    2014 will be my Nomad's 6yr year and it's as tight and works as well as new.

    I have never even seen a Turner so I can't compare directly, but I wouldn't hesitate to buy a SC bike due to worries about VPP maintenance.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucmac View Post
    But climbing is my weakness so I can't ever stray away from a bike that isn't especially good at keeping traction on rutted/rooted climbs and who's gearing and geometry isn't suited to be very efficient in the steep climb mode.
    Our friend got a Bronson to replace her Kona 4" travel trail bike. Her climbing ability jumped up a level instantly - both smooth fire road and technical. The bikes were comparable in weight, but the Kona was a 26er.

    I would have no hesitation buying one if you are comparing to other 6" travel FS bikes.

    We have another friend who just got a Bronson to replace a Heckler. It will be interesting to see what happens to her climbing performance.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  15. #15
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    As a Turner owner, and a SC owner, lemme say that the collet pivot + zerk fittings on the newer SC bikes is the best design I've seen.

    And yeah, nearly all riders agree that a Bronson, correctly set up, climbs extremely well. I have 3 xc bikes gathering dust since I got the Bronson C.

    I rode and liked the burner but preferred the Bronson. Haven't ridden the new Trance.
    Originally posted by bucksaw87
    I still fail to see how mustaches, fixies, and PBR are ironic.

  16. #16
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    Bronson carbon is the best trail bike I have ever been on.

  17. #17
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    I would rank them dead even on long sustained climbs. The differences in weight, fit, bar/stem/seat position, and rider skill/fitness will have a greater effect on climbing than the particular rear suspension type. They're all going to climb well.

    On the descents and more varied trail/AM riding I'd rank them Burner, Bronson, Trance based on my test rides, personal preferences, and brand biases.

    Although the Bronson and Burner are very close and if I decided I had to have carbon, that and the slightly greater travel could sway me to the Bronson.

  18. #18
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    Just curious... if climbing is your principal criteria, why not consider the SC Solo/5010 instead of the Bronson? I love the Bronson (demoed a Bronson C recently), but to me it was really an amazing technical AM/downhill bike that also climbs pretty well, as opposed to the Solo which is more focused on climbing well at the expense of a little bit of downhill performance.

  19. #19
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    There is a significant BB height difference to be aware of between the Bronson and Solo.

    Folks here getting Bronsons and Hecklers [same BB height] are having frequent enough pedal strikes that a Solo is a non-starter.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  20. #20
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    I ended up getting a Turner Sultan. Go Figure. Don't have a lot of time on it yet but so far no regrets. It's a darn nice bike!

  21. #21
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    My Burner is a few months old now. As others have said, the downhill performance (technical or not) is amazing - stable, smooth, and easy to control. My only concern is how fast it makes the rider want to go.

    The surprise is climbing ability. The bike weighs about 30 pounds, so fire-road climbing probably isn't comparable to a 22# carbon. But the Burner shines on tricky technical climbing, over rocks, up ledges, etc.

    Recently I made the entire Backbone single track to Corral canyon (Santa Monica Mountains / California), which includes some very steep rocky climbs. 17 years ago, I couldn't make this section - even though training much more in those days (14 years off bikes due to bad road crash. Back now 3 years). The Burner suspension and geometry seems to keep both wheels on the ground with good traction, and it is easier to balance while pedaling hard.

    The only negative so far is the bike is fairly noisy. There are little creaks and pops in the linkages (or headset or bottom bracket or mech hanger) that are somewhat annoying. I had the shop take things apart and re-lube / re-torque, which helped for a while but the noises are back. Still I love my Burner.

  22. #22
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    It's not creaking, it's just excited to be out riding. ;-)

  23. #23
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    I found the the creaks and noises coming from the cables. Dirt gets under them and make all sorts of noises especial the one zipped tied by the bottom bracket.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucmac View Post
    It's not creaking, it's just excited to be out riding. ;-)
    I have a Flux (DW 26") with a few thousand miles on it and no creaks... well, my der hanger was creaking... I thought it was the linkage at first. I didn't find it until I eventually upgraded my rear derailleur and the hanger was barely being held on by the screws.
    Killing it with close inspection.

  25. #25
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    But a Solo with a 150mm fork or a 130/150 fork is the best of both worlds, perhaps.

    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    There is a significant BB height difference to be aware of between the Bronson and Solo.

    Folks here getting Bronsons and Hecklers [same BB height] are having frequent enough pedal strikes that a Solo is a non-starter.

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