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  1. #1
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    Bionicon Supershuttle. Any one ride/demo'd it?

    I have been looking at the Bionicon Supershuttle. This thing looks really interesting for someone that likes to be able to get down nasty, rocky trails safely, but also likes to climb up really steep stuff.

    Anyone have any experience with these bikes?

  2. #2
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    Reputation: Boyonadyke's Avatar
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    Hit up Kanga, or PM him. I think he's demo'ed one extensively, and has one on order. Some options include the FR model, which has 7 and 7" of travel, in the frame kit, although 2008 may have some new stuff in store. They are pretty light for the amount of travel, compared to most models.

    YMMV, but I think that the Bionicon Edison LTD is the gold standard in their lineup. You might want to demo, climb and descend on a demo model on an Edison and make a comparison. Be sure to fiddle with and adjust the air shocks to get them tuned to your style of riding. I like climbing, so I run mine firm, not plush. At 225 pounds currently, on my Edison, I run 90 to 110 psi in the front and 200 to 230 on the rear, depending on the trail. I think this is one of the absolute best features of the Bionicon series, they are tuneable to whereever and what ever trails you ride.

    If AZ is anything rock wise like the mountains here in CA, request a 2.4 Big Betty on front and a 2.35 Fat Albert on the rear... It is an amazing combination with incredibly good traction off road. Just don't ride the Fat Albert on pavement.

    Check the reviews.

    More specifications here:

    http://www.bionicon.com/standard.xml...00004fa9de3895
    Last edited by Boyonadyke; 12-17-2007 at 01:46 PM.
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  3. #3
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    We rode a supershuttle at I-bike. Interesting bike. I liked the way it rode best with the front suspension fully extended most of the time. If you dropped the front down too much it felt like you were riding in wet cement. If you could hit a "sweet spot" half way when dropping it down it felt better for climbing without the wet-cement feeling.

    It seemed to pedal pretty well and absorb the rough choppy, rocky descents at Bootleg canyon Ok, not great. Pretty solid bike without being too heavy. I wouldn't buy it just for the adjustable HA feature alone though. A bit too gimicky for me. I'm more of a set and forget type of rider anyway.

    See the I-bike forum and look for more demo reviews there. Tscheezy's in particular.
    Last edited by KRob; 12-17-2007 at 08:45 PM.

  4. #4
    Elitest thrill junkie
    Reputation: Jayem's Avatar
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    I rode the Ironwood (more freeridish/dh version), it was good, not great.

    Positives;

    +Ability to set travel at any incriment, such as a little bit lower in the front and improve climbing

    +Durability of air-adjust system, a guy out here is a rep and has no serious problems, they do just fine with the system and don't blow chunks like manitou's similer IT system (same patent)

    Negatives;

    -Suspension was so-so, it's held back by the air shocks, simplistic damping in the fork without much ability to discern/adapt to both high and low speed impacts (this is being addressed currently with a closed-damper cart that should be available soon) and the single pivot design. To put it simply, my 6" travel bike felt like it had more travel and better quality than the 8" travel bionicon. I'm a suspension junkie so this is priority number one for a suspension bike when I ride/get one. All other things come after the suspension working properly and well.

    -Full climbing position seems pretty useless to me, it lifts the rear end up so much that it feels like you're trying to drive into the side of the mountain, lots of resistance to pedaling stroke. I only do middle ring, so this was noticable. It's like marzocchi ETA, but much more exaggerated, I'm not sure if it needs to be that much. The bionicon doesn't lower the BB on the climbs either, it maintains the same height. I like having the lower BB with my ETA function, as I think it helps my stability up really nastly rocky climbs.

    -I didn't really like adjusting the travel everywhere, I don't know if this would change with riding the bike a LOT more, but I tend to like rides with longer climbs and downhills. With even more varied terrain, I found that I didn't like having to adjust all the time for the changes.

    -Not as much traction as my 6" all-mountain/fr bike. I threw the bike into corners that I'd normally "stick" with my 6 pack, and despite having even slightly bigger tires, the bionicon broke loose much easier and earlier than I was used to. This could be due to the suspension (high pivot that is influenced by pedaling forces more, or the air suspension, etc), or due to the lateral stiffness. With an elevated seatstay single-pivot type bike like this, the rear end can act like a huge lever on the main pivot and shock. No matter how big you make the main pivot and the corresponding rear triangle tubes, or how many cross-braces you add, mechanical advantage is still on the side of flexing the rear end. I've owned a few bikes like this and they can do things to minimize the effects, but in the end the high pivot lengthens the distance from the pivot to the rear dropout, thereby increasing the leverage.

    I came away feeling that it was good bike that showed promise, but I honestly felt that my 6" bike was more versatile than the bionicon. This shouldn't be out of line because I'm comparing a DH bike to what should be a more versatile bike (my 6 pack with a 66 ETA fork). The downside though is that I felt my 6 pack was better at downhill due to the better suspension and possibly stiffness. The quality of travel IMO holds them back a bit, and it's due to the air shock design and the overall single pivot design (not all single pivots will share these characteristics). I wasn't wowed because the bionicon was pretty much everything I thought it would be based on the design. The bike I rode would be good for self-powered shuttle runs, but on the other hand if my lesser travel bike at the same weight does even better on the downhills it is kind of self-defeating to use something that I feel is less versatile. I think these tendancies would probably go away if you were looking at the lesser travel bionicons (as you incrimentally get to less travel). The travel adjust feature WORKS, and it may be the ticket for some people. I feel the suspension is compramise to too great of an extent for this/these features. That's my own assesment according to what characteristics are important to me. A lot of the bionicon folks seem to ONLY talk about/center on the travel adjust feature. Little is usually said about other aspects of the bike IMO. They also seem to push the travel adjust as "you can have your cake and eat it too". Most things are compramises though, and while you might not have to compramise between an XC and FR bike anymore, there's still going to be a compramise to some extent (suspension or otherwise). I don't think perfection is upon us just yet. Still, good bike overall. Nothing that I'd expect to break or need a whole lot of assistance with. Cool feature with the shock where you can "unscrew" it and fit a different unit on. With travel adjust features from fox, marzocchi, and Rock Shox, there are lots of bikes that can climb up super steep stuff these days too.
    Last edited by Jayem; 12-17-2007 at 04:29 PM.
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  5. #5
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob
    I rode a supershuttle at I-bike. Interesting bike. I liked the way it rode best with the front suspension fully extended most of the time. If you dropped the front down too much it felt like you were riding in wet cement. If you could hit a "sweet spot" half way when dropping it down it felt better for climbing without the wet-cement feeling.
    Yep, that's exactly what I felt. Felt like I was trying to ride INTO the hill instead of up it. Lots more resistance. Halfway down was a good sweet spot.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  6. #6
    No, that's not phonetic
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    Go to the Interbike forum and search for Supershuttle. We demoed it (I was there with KRob). Warning: we posted TONS of pics.
    My video techniques can be found in this thread.

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