Well if you read my "scared I bought the wrong size" thread, I got a hold of a large to demo.
Hans was very on about the fact that the patch that the front tire touches the dirt is significantly further out, and that has made all the difference. I have large balls and was upgrading from trail to AM with the HD to have the bike that'd match 'em. On the medium, in the hard core stuff, the suspension made up for my being to far forward, however, I really didn't feel confident or comfortable.
As you may recall, the bar and tire were not even in my perifery; hidden somewhere down there. Now, on the large, (50mm stem), my bar and wheel are within view and I'm killing it on the heavy trail features with power and confidence. I did a hairy drop on the medium that required some speed to pull it off. Today, on the large, with almost no speed, I simply let the front tire drop down (like a slow-mo endoe) and the rear just followed. Again, on the medium the 36 might have saved me, but I think I would've been launched over the bars when the front end touched down.
It's more bike to handle (dunno if it's heavier) but the longer top tube is also helping me nail steep technical climbs as well.
I guess this is it! Any comments?
Mtbr's 2016 Winter Biking GearReviews and Roundups
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Thread: Ytc gets his large hd demo