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  1. #1
    AKA Pat McGroin
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    New Karate Monkey geometry; riding impressions?

    I'm thinking of adding another SS to my harem, anybody have a comparison of the new KM? I owned a Redline monocog, and monocog flite previously, and enjoyed the way they rode for the most part. As I understand the new KM has shorter stays, slacker head angle and possibly a lower bob. "Modern geometry" just wonder if anyone has some impressions to share....

  2. #2
    EXORCIZE
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    Nobody?

    If this was a thread about the lack of brands offering steel SS frames, there would've been 10+ replies by now. On second thought, maybe this is that thread.
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  3. #3
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    New Karate Monkey geometry; riding impressions?

    Check Surly forum


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  4. #4
    wanna ride bikes?
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    Rigid SS 29er
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    all steel

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  5. #5
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    Good call.

    I just love mtbr having ~100 sub forums.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryder1 View Post
    Nobody?

    If this was a thread about the lack of brands offering steel SS frames, there would've been 10+ replies by now. On second thought, maybe this is that thread.
    There are actually quite a few steel SS frame options, so I'm not sure if you were being serious...?

  7. #7
    AKA Pat McGroin
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    What I finally found after a lot of searching was " it's heavy" and "slow"...

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Blue Sky View Post
    What I finally found after a lot of searching was " it's heavy" and "slow"...
    frame weight has never been a priority for them. versatility, durability and longevity are more important.

    not sure if you mean slow as in slow steering or slow accelerating? either way, i could see that. heavier wheels/tires, they slacked out the HTA a bit. it seems like they beefed it up this year. it fits wider tires, is now able to handle a 140mm fork, has enough braze-ons and mounts to hang any imaginable accessory on.

    frankly i don't get it. they made it exactly like the Krampus with a different wheel size, and i recently read it fits 29+ too. why? not only that, but it's now designed as more of a trail bike than the Krampus. why?

    previously they had an XC 29er (KM) and a 29+ trail bike (Krampus). now, they made the KM into a B+ trail bike that'll take a bigger fork than the Krampus? the frames are too similar now. it seems like the same bike.

    I don't get it.
    Rigid SS 29er
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    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  9. #9
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    Getting harder to find "regular" XC frames. Everything is going agro, forcing people onto overbuilt bikes for their needs.
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  10. #10
    what the quan?!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Blue Sky View Post
    just wonder if anyone has some impressions to share....
    I demo'd one a couple months back and loved it, and plan on building one up soon.

    I owned a Monocog a few years back and would compare that to the old Monkey. Felt very similar in terms of handling.

    With the new KM, it felt like a whole new beast, which is just what I was looking for.

  11. #11
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    They butchered the new monkey, the older ones were Damn near perfect.

  12. #12
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    I was able to take a short demo ride on a geared monkey today and loved it. I'm already planning my new SS build from it.


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  13. #13
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    I've had one of the new monkeys since December, built up with a fox 34 140mm and dropper and I love it. I also have an older Karate Monkey that I don't ride anymore, with the new Karate Monkey I'm riding things that I would never have done on the old geo the new one is a lot more confidence inspiring.

  14. #14
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    I have not ridden one other than a quick spin around a parking lot, but looking at the numbers, I think the geometry is a bit daft. Surly says the bike can be built with a 140mm fork, but if you extrapolate what that does to the geo, the HA gets quite slack, the BB gets HIGH, and the STA is way back there.
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  15. #15
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    I got 71.5 sta with a 140 fox float, doesn't feel bad at all.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by captainblacksox View Post
    They butchered the new monkey, the older ones were Damn near perfect.
    Completely agree. Love my old school Karate Monkey. Never going to get rid of it. Gnot boost??? What the hell. So indecisive surly.

  17. #17
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    I've been riding various KMs for a long time and initially was aghast at what they did to it. But a friend built a frameset up and I rode it a mile or so on some chunky trails and came away quite impressed. I did joke with him that they should rename it to "brazilian jiu-jitsu monkey" though. This was with the rigid fork and 27.5x2.8 tires. Can't speak to the components on the complete, but I do love the 29" dirt wizards and dont see any reason the 27.5" wouldn't be awesome. I would guess the sweet spot for a suspension fork is more like 120 than 140. It is a great bike, hard to make an argument that its less capable than the old one (and pretty easy to make the argument its more capable). But at the same time, I don't think it would make as good a single speed for me. It handles twisty stuff really well for as slack as it is, but much worse than my ~2012 KM (which in turn does it slightly worse than the ~2006 one I had before, but I think I got a bit more improvement elsewhere from those geometry changes than this latest iteration).

    If you want a do everything bike it is still hard to beat. If you want an XC oriented single speed that can slice through the twistiest trails without slowing down but is still tough enough that you can put it through some rugged stuff that would have many reaching for a "trail" bike, I'm not really sure what is left out there. Soma Juice?
    Yeah I only carry cans cause I'm a weight weenie.

  18. #18
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    <SARCASM>yeah i can't find a 26" bike that takes a 140mm stem anymore either; WTF???</SARCASM>

    bike geometry changes. if old school XC geometry is the bees knees for you have a custom builder make one for you. but i bet if you got used to a newer bike you'd find eventually that it rides better than an old bike.

    to me; new bikes are just slacker and less twitchy than they were a few years back across the board; it doesn't make them worse. once you adjust your style these bikes are just as capable while being WAY better once things go downhill. again TO ME the only thing you could argue is that it makes the old trails too easy sometimes.

  19. #19
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    The head tube angle is not the only thing that changes when you put a longer fork on a bike that can handle it. Regarding the KM, I think most companies making modern geo frames are keeping STA and BB drop in mind when they do that. The KM ends up with a surprisingly slack STA and high BB, on paper at least. Maybe that works for some, but it makes the KM a bit of an odd duck among modern frames.

    Lengthening the ETT was a good move, for sure.
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