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  1. #1
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    Niner M.C.R.9 vs Vassago Bandersnatch

    240lb rider looking for an affordable steel frame. I plan on riding it with a suspension fork and gears.

    ive narrowed it down to the MCR9 and the Bandersnatch.
    Id love a custom steel frame but cant justify it as i cant ride as much as id like and id like to order the frame asap.
    thanks for any help

  2. #2
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    Look at the geometry and choose what fits better to you.

  3. #3
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    Suspension Fork 80 or 100?

    I owned a Vassago Jaberwocky and now an MCR. The Jabber was excellent with the Odis fork and a 80 suspension fork but not good with 100. The MCR is very very nice in any configuration. I believe due to the steep head angle. I run it with a 100 fork and it handles great. Both frames are great. As far as quality, I give the edge to the MCR. I love Niner geo.

  4. #4
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    I was looking at both of these bikes a few months ago. The MCR's steep head angle and top tub length work best for my dimentions (6'1", 235, 34" inseam).

    I agree wih tasselhof, look at the dimentions/angles of the bike (assuming you aren't going to ride either before you buy) and go with what fits you and your riding style best.

    Good luck!

    jEFF

  5. #5
    Space Ghost
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    I went the other way. Buddy rides an MCR and I chose the Bander. I am now selling my RIP9 ( I am THAT happy with it). I run it 1x9 with a 100mm Fox. I am not a racer, but did my 1st ever 100k (all singletrack and some very techy trails) on it. To me, at this point, until you ride a Vassago, you will never know whether or not you like it. It's more than geo. numbers. Mine handles switchbacks better than any of my previous 29er HT's and their numbers would lead you to believe they were better "handling" frames. Don't get me wrong, I love the Niners and at the current sale price would be hard to pass, but don't dismiss the Bander by its numbers the way most do. Enjoy!


    "No good deed goes unpunished"

  6. #6
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    After test riding both of these frames myself recently I went with the MCR. They are both great riding bikes but ultimately the Niner with a Reba XX 100mm was the better handing bike for me. I don't think you could go wrong with either but I know I made the right choice with the MCR...




  7. #7
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    Why just those two?.....

    Quote Originally Posted by ibtravis
    240lb rider looking for an affordable steel frame. I plan on riding it with a suspension fork and gears.

    ive narrowed it down to the MCR9 and the Bandersnatch.
    Id love a custom steel frame but cant justify it as i cant ride as much as id like and id like to order the frame asap.
    thanks for any help
    There are a lot of decent priced frames available. I am your weight and some frames are better than others for guys our size.
    EAST COAST
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  8. #8
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    Geo aside (and FWIW), the MCR probably uses higher quality tubing (Reynolds 953).

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by murtaghstyle
    Geo aside (and FWIW), the MCR probably uses higher quality tubing (Reynolds 953).
    You mean 853... 953 is their high-zoot but not yet ready for prime time stainless stuff.

    I went directly to custom (yes, it was more expensive, and yes, I had to wait six months), so either a) I don't know much about these frames or b) I don't have dog in this race...

    Anyway, talking of tubing brings up an interesting question about tubing quality. The 853 is stronger, so it can be drawn a bit thinner. The Vassago frame, made as it is of butted 4130 chrome-moly (Vassago can make up all the catchy names in the world it wants to, but it is still just 4130, and that's not a bad thing), but it weighs, what, three quarters of a pound more, maybe a pound? Now, for the flyweights among us, that means that if you buy the Niner frame, you get a lighter frame (still no huge deal compared to rider weight), and you get a more "resilient" frame. If the flyweight buys a Vassago, they get a frame a little heavier than they need, and a stiffer ride.

    Now, turn that around- for a Clyde, with the Vassago, they're going to get a stiffer frame. Whether the tubing is 4130 or 853, the material stiffness is the same, and lighter-gauge tubing is more flexible, since there is less of it. The Clyde might well like that extra stiffness. And strength is probably a wash, since there is more of the slightly weaker tubing on the Vassago.

    In other words, if some builder were going to make custom frames for large folks and small folks, the builder would probably build something like a Niner (or lighter) for a flyweight, and maybe something more like the Vassago (in terms of tubing gauge and diameter) for the Clyde.

    This might tip things toward the Vassago. Of course, the tubes used are only a part of the whole deal. Definitely, the OP should get whichever frame fits him better, and should test ride both bikes if he has the chance, since the geometries are pretty different between the two bikes. Those are the bigger variables. Heck, even color matters. But the "better" tubing in the Niner frame might not make it the better bike for the Clyde, necessarily.

    EDIT: I went to go check geometry on these bikes and noticed a weight listed for the Bandersnatch. Did Vassago lighten up their frames a lot this year? At a (claimed) weight of 4.9 lbs for a medium and 5.2 for a large, that might not be much different than the Niner... What are the figures for the MCR? Anyway. For my custom, I went with a steeper head angle like the Niner, and more bottom bracket drop and longer chainstays, like the Bandersnatch...
    Last edited by John_Biker; 11-17-2010 at 06:35 PM.

  10. #10
    Space Ghost
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    For comparison, my Large 20" Bander was 5.3 lbs. My buddies Med. MCR was 5 lbs. on the same scale. YMMV. And i am not sure of some of the info given. However, my understanding is that 853 tubing (which Niner has custom drawn for them) actually strengthens when heated (welded joints), 4130 (Vassago) weakens and therefore requires more material to compensate. At 210-215 with gear, I felt the MCR was too flexy for my taste. My buddy who is about 15 lbs lighter, thinks it's the cats asz and got rid of his Nomad almost immediately. Again YMMV.
    "No good deed goes unpunished"

  11. #11
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    Paint job on the Niner blows, it chips off super easily.

    Otherwise, I ride my XL (4.7 lbs) with a 510AC 100mm fork and the bike is super smooth.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by John_Biker
    You mean 853... 953 is their high-zoot but not yet ready for prime time stainless stuff.

    .
    Yup, fat fingered that one. Thanks for the clarification.

  13. #13
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    If you're concerned about the Vassago tubeset you could always wait and get their new Axten. OX platinum/S3 tubset, medium should come in right around the 4 pound mark.

  14. #14
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    There is nothing wrong with high quality DB 4130 tubing. And I have to agree on what others have stated in regards to Vassagos (Bander and Jabber) and larger riders. Vassago does not advertise this, but when doing research into frames and builds one of my email responces from Vassago indicated that they larger than average riders in their own stable. They do advertise that they ride what they like, and have desinged the bikes as such. So, the connection between large riders and the Banders and Jabbers makes sense. I, being a clyde myself, felt that 4130 was the way to go over other "fly weight" formulas in any case.
    Stuffing our faces at an ever smaller table.

  15. #15
    jrm
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    Im going to suggest

    Quote Originally Posted by ibtravis
    240lb rider looking for an affordable steel frame. I plan on riding it with a suspension fork and gears.

    ive narrowed it down to the MCR9 and the Bandersnatch.
    Id love a custom steel frame but cant justify it as i cant ride as much as id like and id like to order the frame asap.
    thanks for any help
    the EMD or a AIR 9 with a 100mm fork. There are good frame out ther with better tubesets for just a bit more.....
    Wreck the malls with cows on Harleys

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by OdinOrion
    There is nothing wrong with high quality DB 4130 tubing. And I have to agree on what others have stated in regards to Vassagos (Bander and Jabber) and larger riders. Vassago does not advertise this, but when doing research into frames and builds one of my email responces from Vassago indicated that they larger than average riders in their own stable. They do advertise that they ride what they like, and have desinged the bikes as such. So, the connection between large riders and the Banders and Jabbers makes sense. I, being a clyde myself, felt that 4130 was the way to go over other "fly weight" formulas in any case.
    Agree with this 100% loved my jabber and have a siren now thats not far off the jabber's geo
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by edouble
    There are a lot of decent priced frames available. I am your weight and some frames are better than others for guys our size.
    what else?
    thanks

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stahr_Nut
    If you're concerned about the Vassago tubeset you could always wait and get their new Axten. OX platinum/S3 tubset, medium should come in right around the 4 pound mark.
    More details on this?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by murtaghstyle
    More details on this?
    http://www.mmba.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=100615

    This all I've got. Sherpaboy is the owner of Trails-Edge Cyclery, one of Vassago's better dealers. I ride for Trails-Edge.

  20. #20
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    you might check out the Jamis Dragon
    Race model is 853 reynolds same as Niner MCR
    Sport model is Reynolds 520 similar to Bander tubing

    The secret to mountain biking is pretty simple. The slower you go the more likely it is you'll crash.

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