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  1. #1
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    Anyone has an experience with Lightspeed Unicoi frames?

    Hi I'm new to this forum,

    Been on hardtails for years as I approach 40 the doctor says that for my back I should consider something with a bit of rear cushioning.

    I don't race but I like fast bridle ways and spend quite allot of time on back roads and muddy trails as well.

    So from my very stiff and fast Schwinn Homegrown (all upgraded with XT/XTR/ Hope/Juciy7/ RaceFace carbon stuff etc., will I feel an improvement by going with something like the Unicoi?

    I don't want to sacrifice weight and would like to keep the feel of a HT as much as possible

    Is this rare Ti rig a good choice or should I be looking for an Epic S-Works or something more mainstream?

    Yair

  2. #2
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    Never ridden one but with one inch of rear travel I am going to guess it rides more like a hardtail and depending on your back and the road their might not be enough travel there. If you ride on trails that are XC or dirt roads its probably more than enough. If you are considering the Unicoi you might as well throw the Moots YBB into the mix. I think of them as race bikes because thats where you see them. If you have the space I would go with two bikes keeping the current ht and going with a FS. The Epic along with the Giant Anthem are among the most efficient FS trail bikes.

  3. #3
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    "will I feel an improvement by going with something like the Unicoi?"

    Not really. For a bad back you need more travel.

    Softails were a great compromise when your choice were a hardtail and a 6.5 lb, 4 inch travel mushy pedaling fully. A softail frame is about 4.2 to 4.5 lbs. Now you can find 3 to 4 inch xc fullys in the 4.5 to 5.5 lbs range. I think a Turner Nitrous is claimed to be 4.5 lb (?) and my '03 Ellsworth Truth is 5 lb 4 oz on a fishing scale. As for the 1 1/8 inch travel, the softail is more like being hit by a boxer with boxing gloves. You can still feel the hit. It just takes the sharp edge off. A 3 to 4" suspension is way more comfortable and if you have those stable platform shocks it could be crisp pedaling too.

  4. #4
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    Thanks chaps for the advice. Money wise I won't be able to justify keeping two full build so it'll have to be a new frame (and maybe keeping the old frame for a future, cheaper build)

    So essentially I should be looking for a short travel lightweight FS, I've seen some Santa Cruz Superlight and Blur XC on ebay (not the latest models) - are these any good?

    Again, thank you

    Yair

  5. #5
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    I think the Blur and the SL are pretty decent bikes. If you were to look at the most popular and highest rated XC trail bikes of the past 6 years or so I would look at the Blur, Ellsworth Truth, and Epic. If you want more travel then maybe look at the Turner 5 spot and the Intense 5.5. The SL had a 180 pound weight limit on there older frames. Older Guy has a Truth, they might be a little past their heyday but still a very popular bike.

  6. #6
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    Get the Superlight if you are under the 180 lbs weight limit and don't do nasty things with your bike. The Superlight will serve your purpose: a full that is relatively inexpensive, light weight, simple design and decent pedaling.

    The Blur, Epic and Truth are all very good but cost more and have more linkages and more maintenance.

  7. #7
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    I weigh 215 and my 08 Superlight (great deal on ebay) holds up fine...with the added benefit of not having to do much maintenance. With the RP23 it climbs and handles quite well, and built up right, now that much of a weigh compromise.

    Then again, if I had the money, I woulda bought an Ellsworth Truth or Epiphany, but I dont race and Im not rich so I cant really justify the extra grand for the frame...

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