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  1. #1
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    We the people ... Hardtail-how much impact can they take?

    Hi guys,

    I have a Trek 4500 Disc (2013 model)

    I was doing some fairly steep downhill stuff along bridleways...hard, lumpy and VERY bumpy mud.

    My bike was vibrating like mad-even at 6 mph.
    Even on the flat (not downhill) over the rock hard mud it vibrates like crazy.

    I was just wondering if the frame, wheels and forks are made to withstand all this vibrating and rattling...asin if i ride like this often will it just knacker my bike?

    Many thanks in advance for replies.

  2. #2
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    It's fine.

    Have you played with tire pressure yet?
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  3. #3
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    Yea...considering going tubeless...

    At the min in running 30 front and 33 rear on bontrager XR2 on both

  4. #4
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I use 22.5 and 25 in my 26" Hardrock. Tubed. I probably have a little nicer fork - an '01 Marzocchi Bomber. But I think the tire pressure is the big event. The tire pressure one can get away with is highly weight-dependent; I weigh 148 lb lately.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  5. #5
    J-Flo
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    The bike is designed to take this kind of vibration from rocks, bumpy dried mud, what-have-you. That is why it is so much heavier and stronger than a road bike or "hybrid." You will likely find the bike handles better as you go faster, as there is less pitching and yawing from obstacles and bumps when you are flying over them. And lower tire pressure does help cushion blows, it is a balance how low you can safely go before you get burps and squirm (and pinch flats with tubes).

    But yes, things will break and get worn sooner or later, and sooner if you ride hard. It is OK. You don't need to baby the bike. If you break something, that means you are ready to upgrade.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for all your advice guys...

    I'm only 65kg so I may try lower pressures...may upgrade the fork fairly promptly

  7. #7
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    Also guys...just for future reference...

    My fork has a remote lock off and a preload... Can I just take the lowers off and re grease?

    Or do I have to release the lock in some way?

  8. #8
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I don't know. What fork do you have?

    I still wouldn't know, to be honest. Some use grease. Nicer ones use oil. They can all be serviced, to some extent. You can usually find information about any given fork by Googling.

    I've had limited success working on suspension. It can turn into a pretty big project if you don't have a good workspace at home and don't have a good MTB shop, or at least a good motorcycle shop, near you. More road-focused shops don't carry suspension oils, IME, and send forks out for work. Which actually argues for doing it yourself - you just have to get the right lubricants. They'll be listed in the maintenance manual if one is published for your fork.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  9. #9
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    I once had a Yeti ARC that died from too much chainsuck and I decided no repair, I an gonna stomp it to see how strong this thing is. (maybe yeti is a bad example because it was overbuilt...yay FTW)

    Anyhow, with all the force I could muster swinging the frame up over my head and slamming it onto concrete several times (upright, hitting the rear dropouts down onto concrete) I could not hurt the rear triangle or crack the frame. dropputs got plenty scuffed though...

    that lightweight aluminum frame was FAR tougher than I imagined, and I immediately knew then that I don't need to ride like a lightfooted cat sometimes...bike frames are strong ! it took me a long time of bashing to realize swinging it around was not doing much damage, so I laid it down and tried stomping on the triangle. same results, I went freaking samsonite on it and holyballs I finally made a dent.

  10. #10
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    Ok!! Wow!! That ^has reassured me..my frame is made of 'gold aluminum' ...so I'm guessing I don't need to drive it like a ford ka on a motocross track ;p

  11. #11
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    I highly dbout mine have oil...

    It's a sr suntour XCM with a remote lock off...I've tried Google; p

  12. #12
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    Is the frame rattling or do you have chain "slap"?

  13. #13
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    Nothing rattles...the whole bike just vibrates like crazy...you would have thought you were going over a mega aggressive cattlegrid all the time

  14. #14
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    Re: Hardtail-how much impact can they take?

    Go faster. Eventually you will hit a speed where the bike smooths out because you are floating and skipping and sliding along the surface, instead of interacting with every inch and trail feature.

  15. #15
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    lower air pressure would be a good start. I agree with iscariot as well.

  16. #16
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    hey thought I'd throw in my 2 cents, as you can see in my pic, i brought a gary fisher Opie hardtail to moab.
    I like to jump and launch off stuff as much as i can.
    I then went to a Giant Yukon, put a 5 inch Marzocchi z1 wedge on it and proceeded to beat the snot out of that for the next couple years.
    So to answer your question, YES, bikes are made to take the abuse they are designed for. I am 5'9 180 lbs so I'm no light weight either.
    I'm not sure the vibration you are describing is normal, as far as trail chatter or does this happen on the smooth sections of trail as well, in any event, you will learn to unweight the pedals as you hit and go over obstacles much more than riding a FS bike.
    I now ride FS bikes mainly due to ankle issues, but man hardtails are FUN, ride on!!

  17. #17
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    Cheers guys...
    Basically the answer is they can take a lot

    Thanks for all your help

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