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Thread: Smuggler

  1. #551
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    Quote Originally Posted by CharlieDog View Post
    Yep great review. I'll add some thoughts as i now have a couple of rides on my 2015 Smuggler 2. I came from a 2015 Kona Process 153 that I rode for almost 2 years.

    The feel and geometry of the smuggler is pretty dialed, but the medium Kona fit me like a glove. I'm 5'10" and running a 45mm stem and 760mm bars on my transition. Planning on going to a 50mm stem and 780mm bars soon. The smuggler feels a bit more cramped than the Kona but still very comfortable. I went with a medium instead of a large and think it was a good call. On the kona I felt more in the bike and smuggler feels like i'm a little more on top, but not in a bad way. Overall they both feel really good.

    The smuggler climbs better (duh). On one of my local climbs that is about 1 hour of mostly single track and some steep fire road (tiger mt, washington) I beat my climb times compared to the kona, and i am actually running a bigger chainring- 32t vs 30t with a 10-42 cassette. The smuggler was very smooth and more responsive even for having bigger wheels. The kona is not known for climbing but it did fine going up, more of a plodding climb vs the smuggler felt smoother and faster.

    Trail riding- tough to call one better than the other here. The kona was fairly plush and had a lot more travel. I never really felt like it totally ate up the trail but man could that bike rail turns, big time. I rode it at whistler, north star tahoe, whitefish bike park and it really really ripped. Was a good jumper but never felt super poppy. Perhaps with lighter wheels than stock it would have made it feel a little better. I struggled with selling it because it was so awesome downhill but I wanted more of an all around bike since I only do lift stuff 1-2 times a year.

    The smuggler coming down Tiger mountain was sick. Really really sick. I was a bit worried how it would handle with a lot less travel but I was immediately grinning one minute into the descent. The bigger wheels roll so good and the grip was tremendous (running tubeless minions). It wanted to jump just as much or more than the Kona. Never felt like i needed more travel but I would be a little hesitant to take the smuggler to the bike park, I will probably do it anyway and stick to flow trails since I don't plan on buying a DH bike. The times compared to my Kona were almost identical and with a little more time getting used to it it may acutally be faster. These are not overly technical trails but they do have plenty of off camber roots and rock gardens. I am going to hit some more DH type stuff if it ever dries out around here (seattle).

    My smuggler has stock heavy wheels and a 1x10 deore drivetrain with a 42t cog so those are my main upgrades coming over the winter. Looking to go XT or SLX 1x11 and grab some lighter wheels. Both the Kona and Smuggler have the Pike RC fork and monarch debonair shock, the kona had the piggyback version.

    So overall I think the Smuggler is more well rounded that the Process 153. The kona is a bit plodding on the way up but can really rip it going down. The smuggler seems better going up and really does not give much if anything away going down. Hope this helps some of you as i always like reading about real world comparisons.
    I'm from Washington and am wondering what descending trails you're basing your review on? Predator? OTG? ETS/Preston? I'm particularly curious how it did on Predator. Predator's personality has gotten more gnarly over the year and got out of my comfort zone when I rode it last year. I rode it fine a couple times shortly after it opened. Did you think it was enough bike? Is it enough bike for learning the bigger lines at Duthie? I can clean all of HLC, but I've yet to do anything after the Rooster Booster on Semper.

  2. #552
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigmike9699 View Post
    Stoked to hear a ride report. I am on the fence between this bike and a Banshee Phantom, both with the intention of running plus through the shoulder season, and 29er in the summer (or plus all year round).
    So the wheels I built for my Smuggler use WTB ASYM rims and the lateral stiffness is great. I only have about 5mm clearance on the rear with the WTB Ranger tires but I am still to see the tires touching the frame or fork. I have since installed a NN 2.8 up front, good clearance in the pike with the side knobs close to 2.8.

    Riding it... did a fat bike race recently and I think I feel the lower BB but it's hard having snow banks on the sides of the single track. I could probably get used to it especially if I run SPD peals with their lower profile. Anyway, I have the 2016 Smuggler stock config here:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PftCOOY-CA
    And the bike with currect Plus tires is in the first seconds of this GoPro
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyN0HVoVFMY

    Just like you I will most probably stick with the two wheel sizes depending on the season/ conditions.
    2016 Transition Smuggler
    2016 TREK Fuel EX 9

  3. #553
    sbd
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    Seems to me like riding a plus bike in the snow isnt a very meaningful way to assess bb clearance. Sinking into the snow is definitely going to change clearance!

  4. #554
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    Well it's all the testing that can be done in Canada in winter, still relevant as I did not feel that it changed the bike dramatically. And no sinking that day, packed snow.
    Lower BB is a given as the Plus wheels diameter is less than 29er diameter, we're talking 10-12mm drop.
    2016 Transition Smuggler
    2016 TREK Fuel EX 9

  5. #555
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    Slapped on some bright cheery decals, thanks to Slik... just in time for the Lunar New Year.

    Smuggler-16252225_10154253709565980_7858786037717478610_o.jpg
    2012 Giant Trance X1 (gone)
    2014 Yeti SB-66AC (gone)
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    2016 Transition Smuggler
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  6. #556
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    Has anyone found a matching touch up paint for the 2015 turquoise color?

  7. #557
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    Quote Originally Posted by utmb59 View Post
    Just ordered my Smuggler Frame, Lime Green, Large!

    Coming from a Niner RIP 9 and On-One Codeine 29. Should have it built up by the weekend and can't wait...won't be able to ride it anytime soon with the amount of snow we've had but making a trip to Southern Utah soon.
    Smuggler-transition-smuggler.jpg

    Finally got my new frame built up, as you can see, too much snow to ride it but planning a trip soon.

    Rockshox Pike, 140mm
    Fox Transfer Dropper Post, 150mm
    Full XT M8000 Build with Race Face Cranks.
    Spank Oozy 295 rims laced to i9 hubs.

    New pedals and bars/stem are in the near future.

  8. #558
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goliath_2 View Post
    Has anyone found a matching touch up paint for the 2015 turquoise color?
    That's a good call... especially after I found out that white men can't jump double ups on a smuggler while actually thinking about something totally different than where I should be landing!.

  9. #559
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    Finally got her built up and had a handful of rides. The Smuggler is just significantly better than the 2009 Niner RIP9 I was on. Going from 70.5 degrees head angle to 67 degrees was such a huge improvement on the steep downhill! I'm running a 140mm fork so I'm assuming it's 67 since the stock Smuggler build is 67.5 with a 130mm fork.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Smuggler-img_2530.jpg  

    Smuggler-img_2531.jpg  

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    2016 Transition Smuggler aka The Honey Badger

  10. #560
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    that's a good looking bike!

  11. #561
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    For folks that have ridden the Smuggler with both a 130mm and 140mm fork, can you comment on how it rides with the 140mm relative to the 130mm? Is the front end too high, wheelbase too long, etc?

  12. #562
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    smuggler

    Well joined the club today. Been on many of bikes kona 111, ripley, troy carbon, remedy, canfield riot, and now onto the smuggler.

    I will say it is the best handling and playful bike i've owned hands down !

    Smuggler-smuggler3.jpgSmuggler-smuggler2.jpgSmuggler-smuggler1.jpg

  13. #563
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    Quote Originally Posted by SCbos View Post
    For folks that have ridden the Smuggler with both a 130mm and 140mm fork, can you comment on how it rides with the 140mm relative to the 130mm? Is the front end too high, wheelbase too long, etc?
    I rode my Smuggler with 130mm, 140mm and 150mm. Right now my setup is on 150mm. Mostly because of the low stack - i am about 7,2 feet tall so for me the stack feels pretty low. With 130mm the bike surely is more agile and playful. With 150mm it offers more safety in steep terrain and fast dh tracks. Its all up to your range of use and personal preference i guess.

    Smuggler-2881150-large.jpg

  14. #564
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    Quote Originally Posted by Makarmtb View Post
    Well joined the club today. Been on many of bikes kona 111, ripley, troy carbon, remedy, canfield riot, and now onto the smuggler.

    I will say it is the best handling and playful bike i've owned hands down !

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Repping Hubsessed, love it. Dusty is a great dude.

  15. #565
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    Quote Originally Posted by Makarmtb View Post
    Well joined the club today. Been on many of bikes kona 111, ripley, troy carbon, remedy, canfield riot, and now onto the smuggler.

    I will say it is the best handling and playful bike i've owned hands down !
    Very interested to hear any Smuggler vs Riot comparisons. I'm on a Riot and love it, but am always catching myself thinking about the Smuggler.

  16. #566
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    So i have ridden both fair amount i would say. I would have to know your riding style, place of riding, and what you enjoy the most about the trail to make a good recommendation.

    Smuggler :
    + Way more fun to ride through the whole ride.
    + Way better at handling corners
    + Alot more stable at high speed unless chunky.
    + Way more pedal efficient
    - Shock selection
    - You know its 115mm when sending a jump without landing on a lander. or flat
    - skippy when it gets very chunky.

    Riot :
    +eat up the chunk
    +super smooth suspension travel with no real feedback
    +Can land to flat and still be ok.
    +traction
    +handles tight corners and switch backs with ease from short chainstays
    - Feels like your high in the air at lower speeds due to high bb in my opinion
    - If you loose your momentum on climbs your legs suffer
    - short chainstays at high speeds makes the bike somewhat jittery (hard to describe)
    - WEIGHT ! when riding quick and steady with a group of buddies.



    I live where you pedal equal ups to equal downs. If i lived in the mountains were i could ride a fire road up and blast downs i think the riot would have been kept but for the most part i go out with atleast one friend every ride and we tend to either stay steady at speed or hot lap sections. This results in fast pace climbs and descents which left me smoked and no longer having fun half the ride on my riot.


    The smuggler does have its short comings due to travel at times but for 90% of every ride it is more enjoyable then my riot.

    In my opinion a 140 / 130 or 140/140 efficient (carbon remedy) bike with 17-17.2" chainstays, 67 roughly degree head angle, and a seat tube roughly 75 degrees would be the ultimate trail bike.

    I think suspension platform like the giddy up or the trek design are my favorites as it gives a decent pedal platform as well as a good descent.



    Now back to the smuggler : Lets get this thread more active !
    Last edited by Makarmtb; 1 Week Ago at 02:50 PM.

  17. #567
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    Quote Originally Posted by Makarmtb View Post

    In my opinion a 140 / 130 or 140/140 efficient (carbon remedy) bike with 17-17.2" chainstays, 76 roughly degree head angle, and a seat tube roughly 75 degrees would be the ultimate trail bike.
    Did you mean 67 degree head angle? I'd die if I rode a bike with a 76 degree head angle lol
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    2016 Transition Smuggler aka The Honey Badger

  18. #568
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    yes sorry ! haha typing to fast !

  19. #569
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    That's a good comparison of the smuggler and riot. I keep thinking my smuggler needs a stable mate, but it's a tough choice considering the smuggler is so well rounded for me (midwest riding with trips to Arkansas and Colorado). I would like to ride a patrol considering I dig transitions suspension and fit. Other 29ers seem redundant unless you get into trek slash or E29 territory. A scout also seems like a rowdy good time but maybe too close to the smug. Choices man....

  20. #570
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    Here's mine just for fun.

    140mm pike
    Swapped to 170mm XO1 cranks with a 32t
    Xx1 cassette and xo1 shifting
    Guide rs brakes x 180mm f/r
    150mm reverb
    Derby AM rims x DT 350 hubs x DT comp spokes
    Chromag BZA cockpit
    31 lbs with flat pedals

    Smuggler-20160928_115826.jpg

    Smuggler-20170111_140156.jpg

    Smuggler-20161125_103230.jpg

  21. #571
    I gotta pee
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    Here's my new whip
    2016 Smuggler L
    Stans hoops, king hubs
    Enve bars
    Thomson stem and dropper
    Race Face Next SL cranks 170mm
    28t ring
    Xt shifting and cassette
    Fox 34 Factory fork with stealth graphics


    Only had one ride on it so far but im loving it to say the least


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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