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  1. #1
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    Anthem X 26 - Slacken head angle - yes or no (headset content)

    I have an Anthem X with a 120mm fork, as I think that makes it handle more like a trail bike than an out and out xc bike (which is good IMO and better for my riding style). I know from looking on here that some people agree

    It slackens the head angle to about 70 degrees, which is more manageable than 71 degrees. I don't do any racing but want a fast trail bike that isn't too twitchy.


    I'm also running a 60mm stem and 760mm bars, as I prefer the way this rides (more like a lightweight All Mountain bike than a race bike and gives it a similar set up to 2006 Heckler, which I love). I guess I am looking for a lighter, short travel version of my all mountain bike).


    I think I would like to slacken it up by another 1 or 1.5 degrees to 69 or 68.5 (to make it more stable at speed and better on the steep downhill stuff). I appreciate it will have some detriment to technical climbing ability but I am not too worried about that.

    I don't want to fit offset bushes, as this will lower the BB on what is already quite a low BB bike (I strike the pedals now and again as it is, so slackening a bit more will raise the BB a bit).

    I already have a 120mm fork, so my options are limited to either some external headset cups (which will only give me 0.5 degrees) or a Cane Creek Angleset (very expensive in the UK) or a Works Components equivalent (half the price).

    The bit that is confusing me is that the Anthem uses cups that are already pressed into the frame and I am not sure if this is considered zero stack or integrated? Is 44mm the right headtube size for the Anthem (not using a tapered fork)?

    My understanding is that one of the Works Components headsets will press into the internal cups and add some stack height at the bottom. The bottom cup is 9mm, so this will slacken by about 0.5 degree. Is that right? If so, I would be looking at a 1 degree headset angle reduction on top of that 0.5 degree.

    I am struggling to understand what is the difference between these two. Is it just that the EC44/ZS44 just has a much lower cup stack height?

    1 5 Degree EC44 - ZS44 - Angle Headset Semi-Integrated type

    1 5 Degree EC44 - EC44 - Angle Headset

    Is going down to 68 or 68.5 degrees going to ruin my bike?!

    Has anyone else done this or considered it?

  2. #2
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    The Zs44 is your current type of head set top and bottom. I think works allways use a EC44 upper to get the offset as compared to the lower with CC anglest. I think the EC44 option is to slacken it out a bit more if required?
    Going to 68 can only improve things. Have you tried a 650B front wheel. That adds surprising ammount of stability and cornering grip without having to go too slack. The larger wheel also slacks it out about 1/2 degree. In all cases where I've tried both slackening and or addding a 650b front. The 650B had the most impact on stability and ability to carve corners smoothly.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the feedback. Over 80 views and only one response - I was starting to think people don't like newbs around here

    You say going to 68 can only improve things. Please can you say why you think that would be on this particular bike please? I am interested in more feedback.

    I think you may be right about the EC44/ZS44 difference, as they are both available on the 1.5 but not on the 2 degree (only EC44 for that one). So, I am fairly sure I want the 1.5 degree with EC44 to give me 2 degree difference if you include the 9mm stack height increase, giving me a HA of 68 degrees. If I go for the EC44 in 2 degree, it would end up more like 2.5 degrees with the stack increase and I think 67.5 degrees may be a bit too slack!

    650b would be interesting but tyre clearance on the Revelation fork could be an issue and then there is the cost element, as I would want a Stan's rim to go tubeless (liek for like swap). A big outlay for 0.5 degrees.

  4. #4
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    If you're running a Revelation then up its travel to 140 or 150mm and see how you like it. It will increase the BB height by 10-15mm over what you have now. If the BB then feels too high you can go the offset bushing route, but remember with the Anthem X suspension setup you can only use an offset bushing in the top of the shock.

  5. #5
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    Thanks. Good idea but is that really going to be representative of that it will be like with 68 degrees and 120mm? I don't want to be running 140 or 150mm on it really, as I think it would ruin the handling.

  6. #6
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    No harm in trying it right? you can always just switch it back if it ruins the handling...

    that being said, I would argue it might be more hassle, but also more cost-effective and a better solution in the long term to sell your anthem and get a trance or even a reign. I say that because in your original post you said (and I quote) "I don't do any racing but want a fast trail bike that isn't too twitchy." and what you want is kinda the opposite what the Anthem is, which is a twitchy XC-race bike....in the end they're all just bikes and can all be ridden however, and you are free to modify yours however you want, but both trances and reigns are by no means 'slow trail bikes'...

    hope this helps!

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the feedback. I already have a Trance/Reign type bike with the Heckler. I'm just after a lighter slacker short travel bike for hooning around on

  8. #8
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    I just re-read your posts and wanted to add increasing travel of the fork will raise the BB at rest, and under riding conditions will only raise it relative to how much sag you run....on the other hand, using an angleset only will lower your BB, albeit a likely un-noticeable amount under riding conditions...

    also, both a trance and reign are going to ride noticeably different from a heckler from the standpoints that (1) frame size being equal the heckler has a pretty short top-tube comparatively, and (2) differences in all-around ride because the completely different suspension designs.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the feedback. I already have a Trance/Reign type bike with the Heckler. I'm just after a lighter slacker short travel bike for hooning around on

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