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  1. #1
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    Would you buy a Nicolai hardtail or opt for something made of Titanium?

    I done the testing and know that I definitely want a hardtail in the garage but the issue is whether the Argon FR, which is the obvious choice in the Nicolai range, is the right choice versus something like a Ragley Ti or other similarly Ti tubed bike. The Argon is perfect in terms of geometry but it's pricey for an aluminium hardtail, i.e. the same as a comparable Ti framed bike. I don't have a problem with that so much but I'm curious to know from those of you that have ridden Ti hardtails whether they are something a little more special by virtue of their material. They will naturally feel very different of course.

  2. #2
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    I wouldn't buy a Nicolai hardtail, they are pricey, and aluminum hardtails are just too stiff, the Argon's chain/seat stays seem Very stiff so it'll probably ride pretty harsch. This is only speculating though since I've never ridden one.

    I can recommend Cotic Soul/BFe as a super cool hardtail.

  3. #3
    steep fast and loose :)
    Reputation: The_Lecht_Rocks's Avatar
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    i have a Cove Hummer and a Ti456.............go figure................

  4. #4
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    The Cotic BFe feels very much like the Argon in terms of ride and stiffness/harshness, whereas the Soul does feel more 'springy' but then it also changes gear of its own accord as well.

  5. #5
    steep fast and loose :)
    Reputation: The_Lecht_Rocks's Avatar
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    cove hummer. just do it. unless you can find a lynskey built ti456 of course. fox float 15mm bt 140 rlc's on the front - stunning trail centre bike

  6. #6
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    What about the Ragley Ti, which is basiclly a 456 and similarly built by Lynksey.

  7. #7
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    Stand over on the Hummer is no existent and pretty compact in sizing, it soaks trail buzz really well but the back end also flex's and kicks like a wild horse

    If you US side, there seems to be plenty of Custom builders working with titanium

  8. #8
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    Well, the decision between the two options is quite fundamental:
    A friend has the Argon FR and that thing is as stiff as possible. You'll feel everything that the trail has to offer. He raves about it! And, to my opinion it is the most beautiful aluminum hardtail there is.
    Ti frames are known to be the exact opposite of that - some call it flexy. Or comfortable. Of course, Ti looks stunning and has a reputation of being indestructible.

  9. #9
    steep fast and loose :)
    Reputation: The_Lecht_Rocks's Avatar
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    omg - another load of BS without experience on here.

    huimmers are certainly not flexy. if anything the ti456 is more compliant.

    the ragley has a silly head angle for normal trail use.##
    the ti456 is the one - it is sublime..... an absoultely stunning trail centre ride - seriously.....


    meet you at glentress sometime if you want a demo.

    i also hear that CRC are selling Lynskey Ridgelines off - they are worth a look too

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Lecht_Rocks
    omg - another load of BS without experience on here.

    You should put that disclaimer before everything your write

    The Hummer ive been riding for the last 3 years I have absolutely no problem in saying the back end flexes and kicks

  11. #11
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    TLR - certainly value your opinion on this as I know you've got/had both the Hummer and the Ti456.

    CRC currently have 09 Hummers for 1050 but they are 17" only and that does look a little compact for someone just under 6ft. How tall are you and what size do you ride? The reports I've read of the Hummers is that they are definitely not flexy; actually quite the opposite for a Ti frame.

    I've seen a few people on Ti456s and they do look sublime but it's finding one that is the tricky part.

    Not sure of the geometry of the Ragley either; it does look almost comically slack.

  12. #12
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    If I were to get a hardtail, I would through some cash at it and get a custom Argon FR 29er with gates belt drive!

    much like this
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  13. #13
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    I have an Argon FR that I predominantly use for blasts around the woods and winter riding. At the moment it is my main ride as the CC is stripped and about to be sold (AC has arrived with Dipper!) and the AFR is my other bike.

    There is no doubt that compared to my previous hardtail, a Cotic Soda, that the Ti was more comfortable, but the geometry of the FR is WAY better IMO, just spot on (for me). I went for it because in less than 2 yrs I had written off in one way or another a carbon hardtail, a Ti hardtail and another alu HT. I was convinced by the fit and finish of the Nic and knew it stood a good chance of being strong enough given I'd cracked/snapped two of my previous HT's. With a 140mm fork it is spot on.

    Price aside (you can't compare it in anyway to pretty much any other mass market alu HT for reasons we all should know) as you'd expect the quality is excellent and it is a great bike, but I would say that if comfort is your number one consideration and you want a HT, go Ti as the Argon can be harsh as Hell. That said, you can compensate a bit for that with some pretty big volume tyres in there. Having said that, of course the pretty extreme rigidity of that back end makes for a very direct ride, and coupled with the relatively short back end makes a bike that is very responsive, nippy on the trails and a lot of fun to ride.

  14. #14
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
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    I already have a very stiff aluminum hardtail, but if it ever needs replacing, the Argon FR is one of the top candidates.

    ... but if I get old and rich, I'll go and talk to Darren Crisp about a stronger than average Ti bike ...

  15. #15
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    but then it also changes gear of its own accord as well.
    Wtf were you doing to it??? That smells suspiciously like a gear set up issue to me. Surely you'd have to move the BB sideways a mahoosive amount to get it to autoshift at the back.

    The new Soul is stiffer than the old one, which is stiffer than my Soda, and although I'm jeyboylycraweeniefaggot weight, I've never had a problem.

    BFe is indeed stiff (did 6 hours solid in the Slurrey Hills on it on Sunday, and boy did I know about it by the end), but compared to a mates Chameleon, it's not so brutally harsh

    At the end of the day though, YM,YV..

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Edwards
    Surely you'd have to move the BB sideways a mahoosive amount to get it to autoshift at the back.
    Just a slightly compliant rear triangle and a rider with some weight and/or power

  17. #17
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    Jon - it might well be a gear set up issue but it is a problem I have always had with hardtails. The fact that I notice it only when climbing out of the saddle is what makes me suspect it's a flex issue, but again, a little tinkering needed before I draw any real conclusions.

    BTW had an amazing weekend in the Alps - PPDS on Saturday and all day ripping down La Flegere in Chamonix on Sunday. Cham riding is just the best I've ever tasted and th Nic with CCDB was just sublime.

  18. #18
    steep fast and loose :)
    Reputation: The_Lecht_Rocks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wpuk
    You should put that disclaimer before everything your write

    The Hummer ive been riding for the last 3 years I have absolutely no problem in saying the back end flexes and kicks

    wpuk - i'd send it back to silverfish then - it's obviously damaged at the chainstay where you've had insane chainsuck and that's what's giving you the flex FFS............

    hummers DO NOT FLEX............repeat..........DO NOT FLEX !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    they are specifically designed to NOT FLEX !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    fukkn h3ll man ?????????????????

    geetee - fwiw, a 19" would be best - i'm 6' tall riding an 18" hummer but the tt is too short on the 18".
    whereas the ti456 is an 18" and it's perfect with a 50mm thomson stem............beautiful set-up and ride.

  19. #19
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    ok, ti frames don't flex
    ah, hummers don't flex
    hm, someone doesn't flex here, maybe me

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Lecht_Rocks
    wpuk - i'd send it back to silverfish then - it's obviously damaged at the chainstay where you've had insane chainsuck and that's what's giving you the flex FFS............

    hummers DO NOT FLEX............repeat..........DO NOT FLEX !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    they are specifically designed to NOT FLEX !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    fukkn h3ll man ?????????????????
    Calm down pettle i get the message you've read loads of reviews that have stated they don't flex

    Mine does flex and there is nothing wrong with the integrity of the rear triangle

  21. #21
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    The question I am asking is evil sovereign or a argon fr

  22. #22
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    Regarding frame materials. You can build an aluminum frame that is flexy, and a Ti frame that is not. Easy to engineer it either way.

    For me, I would totally go the custom route. Ideally a builder who can work Reynolds 953 Steel, then polish it. Ti is so purple ano...doh, I guess purple is finally back in fashion, so maybe go Ti?

    My triathlon bike is Ti. But that is because I mostly hate road bikes, and want something I can sell in 10yrs for exactly what I bought it for.
    Regional Race Manager, Knolly Bikes
    Washington State, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa
    ~~~KNOLLY KNATION RACING~~~

  23. #23
    steep fast and loose :)
    Reputation: The_Lecht_Rocks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wpuk
    Calm down pettle i get the message you've read loads of reviews that have stated they don't flex

    Mine does flex and there is nothing wrong with the integrity of the rear triangle

    no - i've ridden mine extensively over the last 4 years and it has NO NOTICEABLE flex whatsoever, as per it's design............................... !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ??????????????????

    lets see yours - have you a pic ? perhaps you best look for a snapped rear stay.........

  24. #24
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    Sure no probs, you've accused me of being a ********er and a lyer, so what ill do ill pander to the lovely one child upbringing you've got and post a picture for you (/sarcasm)

    FWIW, i have no problems accepting the fact that when you ride your hummer it doesnt flex, when i ride mine it most definitely does, the OP has already stated he values your opinion (which i have no problems with but it doesnt make you correct), he'd be better off taking you up on your offer and having a ride out to form his own opinion

    If he's closer to Exmouth way he can come have a blast out on mine, although he'd have to bring a set of wheel/tyres as i have it set up for commuting

    Edit: Just because you state its "purposely" designed not to flex also doesn't make it true

  25. #25
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    It has happened that I don't notice things about my bikes

    Then, someone else puts his hands on it and...

    - your headset is loose
    - hey, tighten that front quick release
    - Yup, we'll tighten those Octalink cranks too...

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