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  1. #1
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    Solo vs. TallboyLt?

    Just wondering if anyone has ridden both to an extent to have an opinion?? Solo Vs Tallboy LT

  2. #2
    GMM
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    The TB2 is a better comparison for the Solo and the Bronson is a better comparison for the Tallboy LTc. Although all of the bikes have a wide range of capabilities, they each have particular areas where they really excel. What is it that you are looking for in a bike? I only rode the Solo for about 45 minutes, but on a familiar loop with some fun descending sections and both techie and buff single track climbing. I rented the Tallboy LTc multiple days and have ridden it in a wide variety of conditions, including one day where I climbed about 3,500 feet on a 27 mile ride. To oversimplify (for these two bikes), if you like to throw your bike around, get the Solo. If you like to plow throw obstacles at high speeds, get the Tallboy LTc. Actually, the Tallboy LTc is more versatile than you might think from reading some of the threads on this board, but it certainly has a big bike feel for a "trail bike." That said, it is a very capable climber. And the Solo certainly is as well. Both climb tech stuff well with an advantage to the LTc in loose rock climbing. I cant' emphasize enough though that these bikes feel quite different on the trail. You will flick the Solo around and with the Tallboy LTc, you will use your body more (moto style). The Tallboy LTc is a very stable bike. It makes you feel safe, although it will allow you to hit really high speeds because of that-- which aren't necessarily so safe. The Solo certainly itsn't twitchy, but you need to pay much more attention (relatively speaking) on it. Conversely. it will reward you with fast handling and the ability to switch lines very easily. Also, I thought it's travel was efficient, but very usable.

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    That sounds exactly like any given 26" vs 29er comparison one might read.

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    thanks for that description!

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    GMM
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    Quote Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
    That sounds exactly like any given 26" vs 29er comparison one might read.
    Actually, I don't think that's true anymore. Modern 29ers are much more differentiated. The Ibis Ripley for instance is every bit as nimble as the Solo-- in my opinion. And the TB2 rips single track as well as my son's 26" Stumpjumper. The TB2's HA and WB really do make a handling difference. It just happens that the OP asked for a comparison between the TBLTc, which isn't as quick as some other 29ers although its "faster" than most I have ridden. However, I do think almost all 29ers have better traction and rollover capability. That said, I think the totality of a bike's geometry and components are more important than wheel size alone. As a complete aside, the Bronson was an absolute hoot to ride! Didn't expect that.

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    Comparing the Bronson and Solo, would you consider the Bronson a worthwhile trail bike or is it a bit too big and 'all mountain'? Is the Bronson snappy enough or is it too much of a big bike for the average trail rides?

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    Quote Originally Posted by GMM View Post
    Actually, I don't think that's true anymore. Modern 29ers are much more differentiated.
    Sure, but if you look at the bike's intended usage, travel and frame geometry, and you are comparing two bikes that are similar in these categories, your comments can broadly be applied to the 29er and the smaller tire bike, whether it's 26" or 27.5.

  8. #8
    GMM
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgdj18 View Post
    Comparing the Bronson and Solo, would you consider the Bronson a worthwhile trail bike or is it a bit too big and 'all mountain'? Is the Bronson snappy enough or is it too much of a big bike for the average trail rides?
    Well, as you can see from the board here, most people seem to ride the Bronson as an All Mountain bike. I'm more of a trail rider and enjoy long XC rides. But I'll occasionally venture out to trails with a little more AM flavor-- although I'm not a jumper, other than the occasional 2' drop. With that context, I think the Bronson would make a fine trail bike. Sure, you would be over-gunned on many trails, but the bike pedals way better than I expected it would. By the same token, the Solo is probably as capable as I would need, and is certainly a very nice trail bike. Surprising for me though, I would choose the Bronson, even though the Solo is the perfect bike for me on paper. I just like the feel of the Bronson more, and I can't quite explain it. Regarding you question regarding snappiness, in trail mode,the Bronson accelerates quite nicely.

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    GMM - Does SVCS have a Solo demo? or did you make it out to the SC event?
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic
    - Arthur C. Clarke

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    Thank you GMM--- I currently have a TBLTc and love it. I was interested in the Solo due to riding style changes. Leaning towards longer rides/races, not being a contender to finish first, just wanted the more comfortable ride both positioning and stability. I appreciate your analogy!

  11. #11
    GMM
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    Quote Originally Posted by seleniak View Post
    GMM - Does SVCS have a Solo demo? or did you make it out to the SC event?
    I made it to the SC event. Almost followed them to Greagle, but that would have been stalking

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    Ask yourself 3 questions. Do you currently ride a 29er? Do you ride mainly xc? How tall are you? That should make the 27.5 vs 29er question easy to answer.

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    Munstro - not a flame or to start an argument - but I think we can take "height" as a question out of the equation and supplant with riding style - i.e. - would you rather plow over or be more nimble and pick a line thru - i only say this as i am NOT a very tall guy - been riding the big wheels for more than 2 years and seeing more of the recent 29ers develop the geo's that eliminates the height question for all but the very smallest of riders (female included). All of my bikes have/had a standover greater than my 29" inseam - never an issue and have found great fits in these bikes - that said - they are not for everyone. I think how a person rides and what they ride are key - i prefer grit my teeth and roll over everything in my path - well as much as possible. 29 does this like no other. That said - as I ride more, and have developed more skill - i'm intrigued to try 650 for that more nimble and dare I say playful feel - where I likely will need to be wiser with line choice

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    Im also with the same dudes of this posts. Another question that concerns me is: do the Solo climbs better that tbltc? And how diferences could be in overall weight (same components). My riding is 50% XC and 50% All mountain, but I have big elevation and rocky routes in my area...

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    Quote Originally Posted by dmgrapid View Post
    Just wondering if anyone has ridden both to an extent to have an opinion?? Solo Vs Tallboy LT
    Like GMM said, Solo compared to TBLT is not apples to apples. GMM compared TBLT to Bronson, and compared Solo to TB2. I'll use GMM's comparisons a little bit and make some other comparisons as well. (For context: Live in Santa Cruz and ride XC and trail terrain, not AM. I've got a year on my own TBLTc, a week on a BronsonC XX1 ENVE kit demo bike mostly in March 2013 and a few more days in June, 3 days on a SoloC XTR 3x10 kit demo bike, and a few days on a TB2c SPX kit demo bike.)

    Agree with GMM that TBLT and Bronson have some similar traits. The main similarity is they both float amazingly over rocky chunky terrain, but for me that's where similarity ends. My experience is: (1) I like the TBLT better for XC climbing, but I like the Bronson better for technical trail climbing. (2) Due to smaller tire size, the Bronson rails turns at speed - even XC turns - better than the TBLT; for example, on a XC trail like Twin Oaks in Wilder, my TBLT always wants to wander up and out of the trail groove, but the Bronson stays right in groove.

    And now comparing the Solo to the Bronson and the TRc: When I had a 5-day demo of the Bronson in March, I was blown away with how well it climbs . But a few weeks ago a friend and I rode his Bronson and a Solo demo side by side, switching off many times during the rides. My conclusions: (1) the Solo is a SUBSTANTIALLY better climber than the Bronson and that's really saying something because I think the Bronson is damn good in that department. (2) the Solo is amazingly nimble as compared to the Bronson and for the nimble factor reminds me almost exactly of the TRc - for me the downside of the TRc and the reason I sold it is that every time I got air I felt unstable like I was going to go over the bars, and with the Solo I never had that unstable feeling, I'm guessing due to the bigger wheels because I didn't have that unstable feeling either with the Bronson (no doubt my experience with the TRc relates to my flaws as a rider, but it's my experience nonetheless).

    I'm not seeing the comparision between the Solo and TB2 based on my rides. I like the TB2 enough that I'm likely now selling my HighballC because in my opinion the TB2's redesign basically cured my perception of the TB1 having a suspension bob issue during sustained climbing.

    Based on my demo rides on the Solo, if SCB were to make a 29er version of the Solo and fitted it with a 34 stanchion fork, that would be a one-bike-to-rule-them-all solution for my style of riding (some might say that's a Ripley, but my allegiance to Santa Cruz is significant).

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    Kamper: That's all fair play. However, skilled riders can "play" around on 29 inch wheels just as easily as on smaller wheeled bikes. Case and point, the video Noah posted of him on his Bronson riding with the guy on his rear on a yellow LTc. Same lines, same jumps, same maneuver, right on his tail. Or, watch the Canfields hit rhythm sections on their 29ers. Now, can a 5 foot 8 guy maneuver a 29er as well as a six footer? I would say the answer to this is no. I would also have to ad that some riders on 29ers just blast through stuff because the bikes inherently carry much more speed in the downhills than smaller wheeled bikes. Admittedly "threading the needle" on a 29er will be more difficult than on a smaller wheeled bike. If I were 6 foot, rode rough duty xc, and already had a 29er in the fleet, I would and did go for the LTc.

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    You're not helping matters Mike T. I rode the Bronson for a few days and was surprised by how well it did pedal. As I reported back then, it's better than a TRc and maybe even the old Blur XCc (if anyone remembers them). That much travel has no right to pedal that well, advancement huh. So I ordered a Solo thinking this VPP "2.5" has only got to be even better when delivered through less travel, like the Solo's 125mm. Thanks for confirming my suspicions, but,

    Your high praise and experience have just made the wait even harder, intolerable and a personal challenge for my patience level.

    The LBS has some frames in now, the wrong colour of course, but I will go in and given them a feel up nonetheless. More torture that I must endure...

    Thanks for the insight Mike T

  18. #18
    GMM
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    Great review Mike T! My only point on the TB2 is that it is more similar to the Solo than the TBLTc. It's just a relative statement. Agree with you that the TB2 pedals fantastically. It would be my choice every time for an XC climb, maybe even a not-so- XC climb. My ride on the Solo was too short. I might think differently with more time on the bike.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by GMM View Post
    My only point on the TB2 is that it is more similar to the Solo than the TBLTc.
    Agreed.
    Last edited by Mike T; 07-17-2013 at 11:37 AM.

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