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  1. #1
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    All Mountain vs. Free ride dual suspensions

    I am finding conflicting reports as to how these categories compare and to their actual purposes.
    Which one of these types bikes should strong enough to take 5-6 ft drops regularly yet compliant enough to ride on flat trails too? Pedal effieciecy is a must, as some climbs will be completed with it.

    I recently looked at a Kona Abra Cadabra and they stated its a XC which further confuses me.

  2. #2
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    Get a 5-6" bike. AM.

  3. #3
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    High end adjustable forks and shocks have a damping range that can be firmed up for big drop landings and softened up for more compliant trail riding without going so big.

    More travel can take bigger drops easier, but the frame must be heavier to take the harder beating. The trend for 5 inch is getting pretty light weight for enduring very many big drops.

    The 6 inch travel VPP and DW and near DW's pedal very well for trail riding and climbing and you have the strong frame and slack angles to take big drops. Ride and compare weight, handling, and mtbr rider reviews of durability.

  4. #4
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    I totally agree with the other comments.

    I don't do drops, but I can talk to pedalling. I have a 5.5", 27.5 lb Ibis Mojo that is more efficient uphill than my 2002-vintage horst link XC bike. I haven't had it on lift-serve downhill trails and don't expect it to be as forgiving as my Gemini, but it eats up all-mountain downhill runs. I have a 40 lb, 7", Cannondale Gemini freeride bike that I use for downhilling. The suspension and shocks aren't nearly as high-end as the Mojo, and it's got a pretty heavy-duty build-up. It's great downhill but it is a pig to pedal up hill. If there isn't a chair lift, I won't ride this bike.

    The Santa Cruz Nomad and Ibis HD are two examples of bikes that have been ridden on the trails AND raced downhill.

  5. #5
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    Of course, as our comments have to be VERY VAGUE, just like the OP's request for information. Garbage in = garbage out.

    Some other pertinent information:
    Riding style
    Riding experience
    previous bikes
    weight
    area where you ride
    budget

    etc etc etc


    Every bike in this category will claim to be a good climber and a great descender. Many who own the bikes will chime in with usually favorable reviews. It is the nature of the beast.

    Get out there and ride some bikes, only sure-fire way to know bud.

  6. #6
    usually cranky
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    am and fr are really being blurred together with some of the more recent bike offerings.

  7. #7
    The Unaffiliated
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    The Ibis Mojo HD and Spec. Enduro have seen some action in pro downhill races.

  8. #8
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    Pretty much any modern bike with 5"+ rear travel and designed for 140 to 160mm fork will serve you well. There is also no need to go all fancy with carbon and flavor of the month linkages. More "FR" or "DH" oriented offerings would be often designed to be used with a coil shock, if desired, which I think works well for "AM" riding just as well, if you do not mind an extra pound of weight.

    Otherwise - we do not know your riding, preferences, budget, terrain etc. to give any meaningful advice, not that we can do that anyway.

    Just do not forget an adjustable post with a remote - and possibly an adjustable travel fork (TALAS, Wotan, Lyrik U-turn...) if you want to climb a lot..

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by b-kul
    am and fr are really being blurred together with some of the more recent bike offerings.
    Bleh, they have been for years! Look at the Terremoto, old RFX/SixPack, the not-so-old Remedy even had 160mm out back. Not to mention the Heckler, Prophet (MX), etc.

    What I think we are seeing is people have progressed some in skill and are coming back down in travel for the same duties that people used to be on 8"/DC forks for. Riders have gotten smoother, features have become more dialed, and most of all, suspension quality on a 6" bike now has really come a long way.

    If the OP chimes in with a bit more about his particular riding situation, perhaps the guidance would be better.

  10. #10
    Airborne Flight Crew
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    Giant Reign. Own it, ride it, beat it. Love how it climbs, takes drops/jumps great. Can run a 170-180 fork on it (even ran a dual crown for a while). I have an older model - 6.7 inch travel. Climbs great, no pedal bob - platform shot not necessary, but does improve the ride a bit. Feels like a light, flickable version of my Faith.

    Specialized Enduro - 05 model, similar to SX Trail. 5 inches travel. Jumps, drops great. Pedals different than the Reign, not sure if its better or not - it does require a platform shock to reduce pedal bob. (I'm used to the Reign, so I am biased to it). New Enduros may be different/better. I dig mine though.
    Airborne Flight Crew

    Jerry Hazard website

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhazard
    Giant Reign....- 6.7 inch travel.
    Sounds like a Reign X

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by CharacterZero
    What I think we are seeing is people have progressed some in skill and are coming back down in travel for the same duties that people used to be on 8"/DC forks for.
    That, and single crown forks, tapered steerer and all, getting way, way stronger and lighter then they used to be.

  13. #13
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    How I ride....

    Well guys, if you can imagine I love drops and gaps 6-8ft and single tracks. I do not prefer to climb too much on my bike, so I believe a DH is not appropriate.
    Im from the Pac NW so I like trail riding but mainly no pedaling 60-70% of the time. I eventually emerge from the forest or bike park and need to ride home or to truck.
    It is imperative i have NO BoBB, and for comfort the seat tube should allow enough room to extend the seat high enough away from the pedals to almost fully straighen my legs for cruise comfort. Im 6ft, 190lbs
    NOTE: I rented a Spec Enduro, we found out the shock was blown, but I couldnt lift the seat high enough, rode the bike around town with my knees knocking elbows= totally shitty experience

    [B] Do you think a Kona Abra Cadabra or Stinky would work for what I want to do? The CoilAir looks actually like the winner multipurpose
    Thanks for you input ALL!
    Last edited by SlickOne; 11-15-2010 at 03:59 PM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by SlickOne
    Do you think a Kona Abra Cadabra or Stinky would work for what I want to do?
    From what I have heard the jury is still out on Magic Link whether that's a great gimmick or not, but in any case - I am a believer in coil shocks over air. Among Kona's offerings Stinky TL seems to fit the bill - seems to be an essentially the same bike as my 2007 Coiler, which I like a lot.

    But as far as "bob" - not sure how sensitive you are, does not bother me at all. I like technical climbing, and it works fine. On fireroads, I just try to pedal smoothly. Stock TL comes with a tensioner.

    If I was buying a replacement bike for my Coiler right now - would likely be a Transition Bottlerocket, with DHX Coil shock and Lyrik coil U-turn up front. No uber-duper little links in the suspension though as well.

  15. #15
    i be lurkin
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    maybe a cannondale jekyll 2011- best of both worlds
    me: "mom dont ride yer brakes "mom: "shut up"

  16. #16
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    Banshee rune? Stout enough to use a 1.5" diameter steer tube, frame looks beefy as well. I'm getting ready to build a Wildcard as my freeride/AM rig, it looks like it'll be a nice all rounder looking at the specs (my build may end up being beastly though...)

    Other thought, have you looked at the steal hardtails? I think they could take the drops and gaps and will pedal well.
    Just another redneck with a bike

  17. #17
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    Sounds like you need something with about 160mm in the rear and 180mm up front. You basically want ant a mini DH bike that can climb. I'd recommended frames like the Intense Slopestyle, Ibis Mojo HD, and Reign X. Get them a nice coil shock in the rear and put a adjustable fork up front. Talas 180 from fox probably be golden for this job (i'd recommend a coil fork, but don't know any adjustable 180 coils). With this setup you'll be able to steepen up you HA for climbs.

  18. #18
    usually cranky
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2clue
    Sounds like you need something with about 160mm in the rear and 180mm up front. You basically want ant a mini DH bike that can climb. I'd recommended frames like the Intense Slopestyle, Ibis Mojo HD, and Reign X. Get them a nice coil shock in the rear and put a adjustable fork up front. Talas 180 from fox probably be golden for this job (i'd recommend a coil fork, but don't know any adjustable 180 coils). With this setup you'll be able to steepen up you HA for climbs.
    that sounds a bit overkill to me. a stout 6'' bike would fit the bill me thinks.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2clue
    Sounds like you need something with about 160mm in the rear and 180mm up front. You basically want ant a mini DH bike that can climb. I'd recommended frames like the Intense Slopestyle, Ibis Mojo HD, and Reign X. Get them a nice coil shock in the rear and put a adjustable fork up front. Talas 180 from fox probably be golden for this job (i'd recommend a coil fork, but don't know any adjustable 180 coils). With this setup you'll be able to steepen up you HA for climbs.
    I think you got the idea of what I need! I been reading about the new Konas and the one I like is supposed great DH, BUT not a great jumper as it absorbs all the bumps to well.
    I am gonna test out a 2010 Kona Stinky, with a coil and 160mm fork. Cross my fingers, Its actually really hard to get a bike you want from a factory unless cash isnt and option.I cant bring myself to spend over 3000 for a bike Im gonna crash.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by SlickOne
    I think you got the idea of what I need! I been reading about the new Konas and the one I like is supposed great DH, BUT not a great jumper as it absorbs all the bumps to well.
    I am gonna test out a 2010 Kona Stinky, with a coil and 160mm fork. Cross my fingers, Its actually really hard to get a bike you want from a factory unless cash isnt and option.I cant bring myself to spend over 3000 for a bike Im gonna crash.
    How long are your climbs?

    I don't know that a 140mm/180mm split on the 180TALAS would ever feel good on a climb.

    I'd say an adjustable seatpost is a lot more relevant if you aren't doing fire-road type climbs.

  21. #21
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    Let your replacement and maintenance budget make your decision.

    You can afford to replace broken wheels and shocks? Get something light.

  22. #22
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    Forgot to add, you're going to probably need a adjustable seat post too. Look into the new ones that can do 5 plus inch drops. This will be key to helping with climbing and also allow you to ride with no stops. Flow!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by SlickOne
    [B] Do you think a Kona Abra Cadabra or Stinky would work for what I want to do? The CoilAir looks actually like the winner multipurpose
    I thought you said you had to have NO BoBB?
    Nobody cares...........

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_martel
    I thought you said you had to have NO BoBB?
    And?

  25. #25
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    You want and like to not pedal 70% of the time, which sounds like a DH bike to me, but at the same time you want NO pedal bob, as well as a comfortable ride for the other 30%, not just something you just have to "deal with" to keep going. I don't think a coil shock in the rear is what you would want. You aren't going to be able to get very many rear coils to act locked out. Also, I think 180 up front is more than you even need, yes it would be nice for the drops and downhill, but definitely not needed, and that size would NOT be a COMFORTABLE ride up at all, it would be something that you would being putting up with. Which doesn't sound like you want that. I think you could find a great 160mm fork that would do the trick for going up, over, across, and down just about every portion of the mountain.

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