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  1. #1
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    2013 Kona Explosif 650b?!?

    Already a thread going in the 650b forum, but was hoping a kona rep could comment on the prototype photos popping up on the uk dealer sites.

    This appears to be a honzo with some adjustments. Any geometry info? 1x10? Fork travel?


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    so secretive...it's killin me!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chello View Post
    Already a thread going in the 650b forum, but was hoping a kona rep could comment on the prototype photos popping up on the uk dealer sites.

    This appears to be a honzo with some adjustments. Any geometry info? 1x10? Fork travel?

    The UK online bike shops that already have it up on their sites include specs and geo. Not sure about accuracy though.
    Here's one
    Kona, Explosif 650 B 2013 Mountain Bike from only £1,499.00. Free UK Delivery | Wheelies

    I can't find the one that had geo numbers up.

    Chello, I understand you converted a '05 Explosif earlier in the year. How's that going? What BB height did you end up with?
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by r1Gel View Post

    Chello, I understand you converted a '05 Explosif earlier in the year. How's that going? What BB height did you end up with?
    It's spectacular. Been riding it exclusively since the conversion. It's noticeably smoother with better braking and a little more traction. Plenty of clearance in the rear as well on the Fox F100 up front.

    I don't have a BB measurement to give. It did feel a little "tall" the first time i rode it, but that feeling was gone within a few minutes and i was clearing fallen tree's that i normally would have rubbed on the crank.

    All in all, a winner! No plans on ever going back to 26".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chello View Post
    It's spectacular. Been riding it exclusively since the conversion. It's noticeably smoother with better braking and a little more traction. Plenty of clearance in the rear as well on the Fox F100 up front.

    I don't have a BB measurement to give. It did feel a little "tall" the first time i rode it, but that feeling was gone within a few minutes and i was clearing fallen tree's that i normally would have rubbed on the crank.

    All in all, a winner! No plans on ever going back to 26".
    Cool
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chello View Post
    It's spectacular. Been riding it exclusively since the conversion. It's noticeably smoother with better braking and a little more traction. Plenty of clearance in the rear as well on the Fox F100 up front.

    I don't have a BB measurement to give. It did feel a little "tall" the first time i rode it, but that feeling was gone within a few minutes and i was clearing fallen tree's that i normally would have rubbed on the crank.

    All in all, a winner! No plans on ever going back to 26".

    Chello-at the risk of seeming dull-witted (a chance I take every time I open my mouth) was the conversion as simple as just changing out the wheels? I have an Explosif which I think is a 2005 (gunmetal grey) and am very interested in this conversion as I love the bike.

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    The only limiting factor would be the fork you have. I have a fox f100 meant for 26" wheels that will fit 650b's without issue.

    As long as you have a fork that will fit the front wheel, the rear is as simple as changing out the rear wheel. I moved my sliding dropouts toward the rear a bit just to give a little more clearance, but you may not even have to do that depending on the tire you choose.

    Cheers.

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    Thanks for the quick response. I do have a Magura Durin 100 on it and the clearance looks dicey.

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    So is this headed for the US Market or not?
    If there is a frame only option, I'll place my order today!

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    They don't list them as in stock and are scheduled to ship in February. I did talk to someone up at Kona just a few days ago and they've been ripping around on the protos a bunch, but it'll be the next build schedule before they arrive. It won't surprise me if there are a few more options form them next year in that wheel size.
    [SIZE=2]I like to start out slow and then back it off a notch.[/SIZE]

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    Quote Originally Posted by unoveloce View Post
    They don't list them as in stock and are scheduled to ship in February. I did talk to someone up at Kona just a few days ago and they've been ripping around on the protos a bunch, but it'll be the next build schedule before they arrive. It won't surprise me if there are a few more options form them next year in that wheel size.
    So is this a yes...they will be available in the US?

    Frame only?
    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

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    looks like it - just got this back from Kona:

    "We should see these in Spring..March or April. You can place a pre-order through your local dealer"

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    Quote Originally Posted by jayoutside View Post
    looks like it - just got this back from Kona:

    "We should see these in Spring..March or April. You can place a pre-order through your local dealer"
    That's all they told you? Frame only??

    I wrote to them also for availability, frame only option and geometry specs. Waiting for an answer back.

    I'm only interested in the frame or I can get a Jamis Dragon frame for just over dealer cost. I like the Kona for it's tapered head tube and replaceable hanger both which the Jamis lacks.
    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

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    Frame only will be available for $500 is what the guy from Kona wrote to me.

    Still no other details or geo specs. Hopefully soon as I'd like to order a frame set but need more specifics before plunking down the $$.
    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

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    I wish they took the All Mountain geo approach. It just makes more sense to make the 29er (Honzo) closer to the XC end of the spectrum, and go more toward the AM side as the wheels get smallar (Explosif>Steely).

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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    I wish they took the All Mountain geo approach. It just makes more sense to make the 29er (Honzo) closer to the XC end of the spectrum, and go more toward the AM side as the wheels get smallar (Explosif>Steely).
    Still no final specs that I'm aware of. Should also be able to install a Works Components angleset (with 1.125" steerer) to slack the front end if that's what you're looking for?
    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    I wish they took the All Mountain geo approach. It just makes more sense to make the 29er (Honzo) closer to the XC end of the spectrum, and go more toward the AM side as the wheels get smallar (Explosif>Steely).
    No it doesn't. Leave the Honzo alone.

    I say scrap the Steely altogether and just focus on 27.5 and 29er AM hardtails.

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    oh, yea..that's a good point. An angleset would be good. I'm just thinking since I read it'll be more Trail oriented geo, that it'll have less than burly build.

    BTW...it's not the first time I've heard the Works angleset recommendation, but I haven't heard much for other options (i.e. cane creek). Is the Works that much better?

    Eurospek - You got what you asked for...they already scrapped the Steely. Don't kick the steeel horse when it's down

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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    oh, yea..that's a good point. An angleset would be good. I'm just thinking since I read it'll be more Trail oriented geo, that it'll have less than burly build.

    BTW...it's not the first time I've heard the Works angleset recommendation, but I haven't heard much for other options (i.e. cane creek). Is the Works that much better?

    Eurospek - You got what you asked for...they already scrapped the Steely. Don't kick the steeel horse when it's down
    But the 2011 and 2012 Steely was never a burly complete build from the get-go. Both years got stuck with a RS Tora QR. IMO, frame geometry was always there for the Steely, it was the complete package that sucked and ultimately led to its demise.

    The 2012 Honzo was a decent build that focus on AM components, 2013 Honzo completely blows the 2012 out of the water in terms of upgrades.

    Plus I'm finding the 26er AMHT to be a dying breed anyway. After owning a 26er Transition TransAM, Ragley Blue Pig, On-One 456 Summer Season, I would never bother with little wheels on a HT again. Riding the Honzo and 29er was definitely eye opening for me.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    oh, yea..that's a good point. An angleset would be good. I'm just thinking since I read it'll be more Trail oriented geo, that it'll have less than burly build.

    BTW...it's not the first time I've heard the Works angleset recommendation, but I haven't heard much for other options (i.e. cane creek). Is the Works that much better?

    Eurospek - You got what you asked for...they already scrapped the Steely. Don't kick the steeel horse when it's down
    CC is a bit bulky IMO and can be problematic if not installed perfectly. It does offer you the ability to adjust angles without removing the cups. With the Works you pick the angle you want when you order and is not adjustable. It's a cleaner setup and just works without issues from what I read. For me it would be Works. I think FSA now has an angle set also.
    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    But the 2011 and 2012 Steely was never a burly complete build from the get-go. Both years got stuck with a RS Tora QR. IMO, frame geometry was always there for the Steely, it was the complete package that sucked and ultimately led to its demise.

    The 2012 Honzo was a decent build that focus on AM components, 2013 Honzo completely blows the 2012 out of the water in terms of upgrades.

    Plus I'm finding the 26er AMHT to be a dying breed anyway. After owning a 26er Transition TransAM, Ragley Blue Pig, On-One 456 Summer Season, I would never bother with little wheels on a HT again. Riding the Honzo and 29er was definitely eye opening for me.
    Good points. i've owned an Air9 Scandium, so got a taste of 29er. The Honzo has many key AM characteristics to change my feeling on 29ers (i.e. slack HT, super short CS, etc), but it still has big wheels. Big wheels for me take fun out of pumping the trail, and having so much tire sticking out in front takes away from agility on super tight trails. I have no doubt the Honzo is rolls faster over rough trails, but throw it on a tight trail and I believe the weaknesses will be exposed.

    With a long list 26" AMHTs under your belt, I'd love to know your honest thoughts on my assessment.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    Good points. i've owned an Air9 Scandium, so got a taste of 29er. The Honzo has many key AM characteristics to change my feeling on 29ers (i.e. slack HT, super short CS, etc), but it still has big wheels. Big wheels for me take fun out of pumping the trail, and having so much tire sticking out in front takes away from agility on super tight trails. I have no doubt the Honzo is rolls faster over rough trails, but throw it on a tight trail and I believe the weaknesses will be exposed.

    With a long list 26" AMHTs under your belt, I'd love to know your honest thoughts on my assessment.
    Have you ridden your brother's Honzo with the 34? I suggest trying it out.

    While you bring up valid points about agility, I think it all comes down to rider size as well. I'm 6'4" and always felt like a clown on my 26er AM hardtails, not too mention all were on the edge of being too small and cramped. The TransAM was slack, short CS, along with all the attributes of a proper AM hardtail but I never got on with it. Always felt OTB when going DH and on longer rides I couldn't wait to get back to the car. Wasn't impressed at all. Never felt "in" the bike like I do now.

    Being on a 29er definitely has opened my eyes to a whole new level of biking, confidence and picking lines and obstacles I would never clear on my 26er and just get caught up over big roots and stuff. Previously played around with 50 -90mm stems on the 26er and while longer ones were comfortable, I hated my 745mm bars on such a long stem. I love 50mm stems and 785mm bars. Maybe because I'm finally on a well proportioned bike, short stem and wide bars, I never feel too much wheel in front of me at all.

    I can only imagine how much fun FS AM 29ers are now like the Banshee Prime or SC TB LT. Too bad my terrain doesn't call for FS and my hardtail suffices 90% of the time.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Have you ridden your brother's Honzo with the 34? I suggest trying it out.

    While you bring up valid points about agility, I think it all comes down to rider size as well. I'm 6'4" and always felt like a clown on my 26er AM hardtails, not too mention all were on the edge of being too small and cramped. The TransAM was slack, short CS, along with all the attributes of a proper AM hardtail but I never got on with it. Always felt OTB when going DH and on longer rides I couldn't wait to get back to the car. Wasn't impressed at all. Never felt "in" the bike like I do now.

    Being on a 29er definitely has opened my eyes to a whole new level of biking, confidence and picking lines and obstacles I would never clear on my 26er and just get caught up over big roots and stuff. Previously played around with 50 -90mm stems on the 26er and while longer ones were comfortable, I hated my 745mm bars on such a long stem. I love 50mm stems and 785mm bars. Maybe because I'm finally on a well proportioned bike, short stem and wide bars, I never feel too much wheel in front of me at all.

    I can only imagine how much fun FS AM 29ers are now like the Banshee Prime or SC TB LT. Too bad my terrain doesn't call for FS and my hardtail suffices 90% of the time.

    I agree with everything you wrote. As for my brother, he has not ridden my Honzo with a 34, or ridden the Honzo with a 32 on a real ride. I may be loaning him my bike tomorrow, so we'll see what he has to say...BTW, if I was in the market for a full suspension it would be the Banshee Prime, but my Honzo doesn't hold me back at all.

  24. #24
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    a little more info on the bike from Kona's site:

    There’s nothing quite like the sweet ride of steel. Especially when it comes to an all-purpose trail bike. The new Kona Explosif takes our hardtail heritage and dashes it with some new—most notably the advantages of 27.5 wheels. Featuring a Kona Cromoly double butted frame, the Explosif uses aggressive trail geometry (68-degree headtube, low bottom bracket and short 420mm chainstays), while at the same time providing options via a sliding dropout system that can accommodate singlespeed, a 135mm standard geared system, and even a 142x12 thru axle for gnarlier applications. Throw in ISCG tabs, dropper post cable routing, a 44mm internal headtube for tapered forks and most trails imaginable are now yours to blow up. Enjoy the pyromania.

  25. #25
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    Link to site KONAWORLD


    2013 Banshee Spitfire V2 650b

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