Tell me more about KS Link
Let me just start by saying I am not an engineer.
What we've heard Keith say is that the new KS link design is more supple over small bumps, stiffer, and the rear triangle directly drives the rear shock in near linear fashion. I'd like to learn more about how this design is stiffer and stronger than the virtual 4bar setups on the old Runes and Spittys.
From what I can gather, it looks like the new dual links on ks frames are a major source of rear triangle strength and rigidity. Am I wrong to assume that the rear triangle is A LOT stiffer with the links mounted? I don't recall any other minilink designs that connect to the rear triangle like the KS does, which appears to combat lateral flex. I know a lot of current and old banshees use what appear to be single pieces of beefy aluminum CNC machined aluminum at places like the Chainstays at the BB pivot and the seat stays at the pivot there. I always look at other bikes that don't use this type of design, and they always appear under built when sitting next to something like a Rune, wildcard, or scythe. But this also leads me to believe that banshee is using a few new tricks up their sleeve if the new rune is stiffer than the old version. So am I right, is it the way the links connect to the rear triangle? Tell us more!
From what I can see from various pictures is a few things;
- the 2 links are each solid and slot right in between the rear triangle and over the tabs on the frame. The older 2 rocker system that connects to the shock are wider than the seat tube and stand alone, this creates flex easy unless heavily overbuild.
- the 2 links are shorter in length thus creating less leverage on the axle.
- the 2 pivot points on the frame are closer together, needing a shorter axle. Again shorter axles mean less flex (unless underbuild ofcourse)
But for me the major difference will be Banshee FINALLY torques the pivot bolts directly onto the bearing races, with no nylon drag-a-lot washer in between. This always ment you can barely torque the bolts to 5 nm without creating allot of drag or noise (!) from the washers. These create ofcourse a very easy flex point. I really hope they continue to upgrade the other models with this method aswell.
No experience on other, previous Banshees, but I'll say I think your thoughts are bang on Haus and exactly my thoughts when I got my Prime. Also I think having the rear tri mount directly to the shock and not have the links in between also adds to the stiffness. Don't know exactly how it all works, all I know is when riding big, chunky technical it's super stiff and holds what ever line I put it on and if I need to change lines, it does that on command as well.
If FM chimes in he could give a better comparison and info since he has a Prime with the KS Link and also a V1 Rune.
Prime is stiffer, no doubt. My Rune is pretty stiff too, but the prime is getting all my ride time.
I think the Prime design is really well executed with most all the pivots being "captured" and having the shock connect directly to the swingarm (as opposed to the rune, where the shock connects to the rockers, and the rockers to the frame and swingarm)
Also worth noting, the prime (not sure about the new rune& spitty) has a ginormous top tube- bigger and thicker walled than the TT on my Rune. The prime protos are built like a DH bike- STIFF.
I know Keith has made many refinements to the production frames & tooling based on prototype feedback.
I just got some carbon rims (easton havens)- BIG difference in stiffness. Like going from a 32mm QR fork to a big burly TA fork. Wow.