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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: []D[][]v[][]D's Avatar
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    Farewell my faithful Tracer.....

    Tonight I said goodbye to an old friend, my first generation Intense Tracer. It has been my ride going on its eighth season now and I have finally decided to retire her. I am not selling her, rather stripping it of its parts and hanging it on a wall for now. Will I build her up again? Most likely, but not anytime soon.

    It has been a fantastic journey, beginning fall 2000. I bought her second hand from a friend who at the time owned a bike shop. Immediately I was blown away by its performance. I said in a 2001 review on this site..'It climbs like a three-balled billy goat on crack" and "inspires confidence; it makes you a better rider." It was cat-like when carving singletrack, always hooked up on the steepest most technical climbs and was a blast to bomb downhill on

    Eight years, approximately 3,000 miles and she kept me safe (no major injuries whatsoever despite some gnarly spills), whether it be hammering with New England Endurance Racing legend, Lsett (who may now ride the only Tracer left in CT), or racing cross country or a 24.

    She got a facelift in 2005 courtesy of Spectrum Powderworks (went from red to "cream soda blue" and has had four different rear shocks, three different forks and three different wheel sets.

    My last ride was two parts...alone Sunday afternoon for a solo ten miler and tonight at night with Lsett. Both took place at Mianus Park in Stamford, CT, where it all began for me as a mountain biker. All the traits that made me fall in love with her were still evident as together we carved singletrack, ate up rock gardens, and safely landed every kicker. Whenever I had the legs, she would never let me down.

    So why end the love affair? A couple years with an Uzzi SL link devoid of spacers carved into the frame and made for some pivot slop....detectable yet tolerable. She is at the point now where pivot screws come loose during rides and must be consistently checked. I also long for more travel....four inches these days is on the low end for all mountain machines. And one of my issues with the Tracer was that the rear suspension, while very efficient, could never be described as plush and was never all that small bump compliant. But most of all, I guess I wanted to enjoy that special feeling of buying a new bike. Every mountain bike I have ever owned has been used..I wanted something that would only be mine. Lastly, I ran into my friend who sold me the Tracer and he was amazed that I still rode it. While I always thought I would ride her until she quit, preserving her now may allow me to one day build her up again and enjoy her once I have the means.

    So what will replace her? I had always assumed I would stay within the intense family and "graduate" to a 5.5. A couple times I came very close to trading her in through Intense but never pulled the trigger. I know they formally discontinued the trade in program but I attempted a couple times to contact intense to see if they would offer any incentive to stay intense and I never got a response. During that time I stumbled upon a great deal on a bike I had always had my eye on, due to the fantastic reviews it has always received. This bike was always on my radar because it matched up well with what I would be looking for in my next bike...more travel but still able to be built in the 25-27 lbs. range. I have attached a few pics of my Tracer and me on our last dance together. At the very bottom, find her replacement, my new Titus Motolite Ti.

    To all my fellow Tracer riders....STAY STRONG. LONG LIVE THE ORIGINAL TRACER


    - []D [] []v[] []D
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    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Christ D's Avatar
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    Nice oldy keep the frame,you'll never know .I'm sure i will never depart from mine. I still love to ride my Tracer,planning on doing a couple more years with it(just bought it this year ) What a bike,a legend.

  3. #3
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    Great post, the tracer has been good to me too...plan on keeping for another 10 years.

    ]D[][]v[][]D How did you get away with running the link without the spacers, I don't get. Couldn't you just get some spacers made up or ask Intense?

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: []D[][]v[][]D's Avatar
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    Bad bike shop

    when I switched to the Uzzi SL, my bike shop at the time installed it without the two spacers that meet the frame. i didn't notice it until I developed play. WHen i took the link off I saw they were missing. The SL link was gettin worn too so I took it off and put the original back on with spacers I got from intense.
    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  5. #5
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    Sorry for the lack of response to your trade in requests

    I sent you a PM as well but wasnt sure how often you checked them.





    As a representative of Intense and a former resident of Connecticut, It pains me to think of you riding a Titus! I apologize for the lack of response on your trade in request. I cant explain how that fell through the cracks. If after spending some time on your new ride, you feel the urge to get back on an Intense, please contact me and I would be happy to work out a deal for a New Tracer VP.
    cheers
    Paul Cusick
    Director of Sales and Marketing
    Intense Cycles
    pcusick@intensecycles.com

  6. #6
    mtbr member
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    boooooo on switching to titus

  7. #7
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    sucks to hear that you are leaving, although that titus is pretty []D[][]V[][]D !

  8. #8
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    pecusick....

    ...thank you for your response. Who knows what the future has in store, but I would certainly own another Intense!! Quality is top notch and for the most past customer service is solid
    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  9. #9
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    I didn't think they started using the fully gussetted seat mast until 02 or 03? My Tracer is an 01 and it doesn't have the full gussett.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
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    I could of gone in more depth during my narrative...

    ..but I tried to keep it short. Mainframe was replaced winter '03 for a crack in that very area
    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by []D[][]v[][]D
    ..but I tried to keep it short. Mainframe was replaced winter '03 for a crack in that very area
    i.c.

    Luckily mine is still hangin' together.

  12. #12
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    I wouldn't worry about the gussetted seat mast. I remember Intense saying it was only a problem on the Large mainframes with riders doing more than the frame could cope with.

    []D[][]v[][]D how did you get "The Intense" chainstay sticker/protecter to stay in place??? I just bought a new old stock one off ebay and it won't stick well as the square stays are causing the edges to unstick. The stickers quite thick and maybe the glue isn't as strong as it used to be.

    []D[][]v[][]D - was yours easy to put on?

  13. #13
    mtbr member
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    Its been so long...

    ...but I want to say I put it on and kept it tight and in place with cable ties. After a while I cut the ties and remarkably it never budged!
    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  14. #14
    Front Range, Colorado
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    Quote Originally Posted by saga
    I wouldn't worry about the gussetted seat mast. I remember Intense saying it was only a problem on the Large mainframes with riders doing more than the frame could cope with.

    []D[][]v[][]D how did you get "The Intense" chainstay sticker/protecter to stay in place??? I just bought a new old stock one off ebay and it won't stick well as the square stays are causing the edges to unstick. The stickers quite thick and maybe the glue isn't as strong as it used to be.

    []D[][]v[][]D - was yours easy to put on?
    I have been running "The INTENSE" chainstay protector on my UZZI-SL for many years. And you're right the original glue doesn't do the trick [even back in the day] due to the curve of the chainstay. So I just put a black zip tie on each end and it has worked just fine. I even took one of my old ones and cut it up and used it as a cable rub protector on both sides of the frame near the headset. As []D[][]v[]D said if you use zip ties when the "glue is new" you will probably be able to remove the ties after awhile and it will stay.
    BTW
    []D[][]v[][]D glad to hear that you had such a long and pleasant experience with the old Tracer. And I certainly hope the TITUS brings you just as many years of fun. It's just too bad you changed teams on us.
    Last edited by DIRTJUNKIE; 11-16-2008 at 02:39 PM.
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  15. #15
    Old school BMXer
    Reputation: Blaster1200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by saga
    I wouldn't worry about the gussetted seat mast. I remember Intense saying it was only a problem on the Large mainframes with riders doing more than the frame could cope with.

    []D[][]v[][]D how did you get "The Intense" chainstay sticker/protecter to stay in place??? I just bought a new old stock one off ebay and it won't stick well as the square stays are causing the edges to unstick. The stickers quite thick and maybe the glue isn't as strong as it used to be.

    []D[][]v[][]D - was yours easy to put on?
    Ideally, when you first install the protector, use a heat gun to warm it up. I've installed a number of these, and by using a heat gun, it'll match the contours very well and stick forever. I do mean forever - I tried to remove on a while back, and it didn't want to come off.

  16. #16
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    Went from Tracer to Titus as well

    I too traded in my MY 2000 Tracer for a Titus but went for something with a bunch more travel as well as being a different type of bike altogether. I built up a Supermoto which was posted on the MTBR classifieds about a year ago. I was realizing that after putting on the Uzzi link and a 85-130mm Revelation fork and running it at 130mm all the time I was trying to turn the Tracer into something it was not meant to be. It seems to perform at its best w/ a 100mm fork and the original linkage in my opinion.

    The Tracer was my first boutique bike purchase and has effectively spoiled me for the more run-of-the-mill bike brands. I still have it, rode it about 5 times this past summer and intend to keep it for the forseeable future, including spending the coin for a new powder-coat. I'd really like to completely overhaul it and keep it as my XC steed for many years to come. I think you're doing the right thing keeping the frame around, the Tracer is a classic that still is one damn sexy looking ride.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
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    That is my master plan...

    ...I would love one day to spec her as a XC, short travel demon. By shutting her down now, I can ressurect her later and use her for lighter duty riding
    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  18. #18
    mtbr member
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    one last pic...

    before she adorns my garage wall. Until we ride again......
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    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  19. #19
    mtbr member
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    Quote Originally Posted by []D[][]v[][]D
    before she adorns my garage wall. Until we ride again......
    Sad... but i'm glad you'r keeping her.Still looks great,she does.

  20. #20
    on my 3rd wind...
    Reputation: SingleTrackHound's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by []D[][]v[][]D
    before she adorns my garage wall. Until we ride again......
    Wondering... if your Tracer is 2000-2001, how come the front traingle is from 2003? Was front replaced by Intense?

    My 2001 Tracer is still going strong though it's not my everyday ride rig anymore. Rear suspension became very plush the moment I swapped to Romic coil and Push'd the orginal Fox shock.

    Couple of years ago I found a small hairline crack on the chainstay. It got swapped with another rear end from a used Tracer I had purchased when I heard "Tracer no more". Original frame prolly logged 6000+ miles before it showed a sign of stress crack on the chainstay. Served me very well and will continue to do so...
    sth

  21. #21
    Ride Hard, Ride Fast!!!
    Reputation: HardCharger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by []D[][]v[][]D
    ...I would love one day to spec her as a XC, short travel demon. By shutting her down now, I can ressurect her later and use her for lighter duty riding
    Here is an inexpensive way to ressurect her... convert it into a full suspension singlespeed. Super fun! I actually ride my Tracer more than my 5.5/6.6.

    I tried selling it last year. Fortunately there were no takers so I was able to do this
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  22. #22
    mtbr member
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    @ HardCharger:i saw yours allready last year as a SS. Don't sell this beauty,me thinks you'll regret it later!!

  23. #23
    mtbr member
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    Had me thinking last night...

    ...could it be built as a 69er? What would happen if I put a 29er fork on the front end?
    Never play leap-frog with a unicorn!

  24. #24
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    Tracer/Titus Owner

    I still have my Tracer frame but I switched teams to Titus as well- but an Eleven (Ti Hardtail). As an Xmas present to myself I will be building it back up- although I just seem to be drawn to hardtails both single and geared. The Tracer is just an incredible, capable ride. Motolite seems like a hot, hot ride
    I guarantee I will never, ever be accused of bringing sexy back...

  25. #25
    Brian
    Reputation: AzTracer's Avatar
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    Myself (In red) and Russell with his Titus Motolite


    Isn’t she beautiful?


    I am afraid I might soon be joining you in Titus land. Not because I don’t love intense, but because like you the trade up program has passed me by. My tracer is on its last leg and I am finding National trail on South Mountain begging for more travel.

    Also living in Tempe AZ I would like to support my local bike maker (If you can call the foreign made aluminum version ill buy local)

    But what it really comes down to is the almighty dollar. $1200 For a Titus, or $2400+ to carry on the Tracer legacy. It’s kind of sad because I have yet to see a Tracer VP on SoMo and would love to own the first. But I can honestly say that the tracer is the a masterpiece. I wish I could keep riding this forever.


    PS when my tracer is gone my forum name won’t make any sense

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