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  1. #1
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    Jordan
    if you don't mind me butting in, i can give some impressions of the air/air 6-pack that they had at the show (DHX air, Fox 36 TALAS RC2)... first, the bike was set up WAY too soft for me, which was remedied by the fox shox guys that were set up on the trail. GREAT IDEA by fox to do this. once they helped me dial in the air pressure and pro-pedal settings, the bike felt amazing. i'm 5'11", and the large with a 70mm FSA stem felt great to me (bars maybe a little wide, but that's personal preference). it railed through corners with stiffness i haven't felt outside of my foes (it felt stiffer than a 5 spot to me), and it was totally smooth on the rough stuff. this is a bike that feels great at high speeds- i'm not a very fast rider, and i was pushing my limits because i felt so comfortable on it. it's a tad heavy, but with air on both ends, the frame weighs in the mid 8 lb range, which is okay for a trail bike. plus, with the travel adjust on the front end, you can steepen the head angle for climbing relatively easily. although you lose some of the super-slacked out feeling you get from the 36 van, i think it's worth it (especially if the 6 pack is going to be your only bike or your main bike). plus, the way they mount the shock allows you to reach the propedal knob really easily from the saddle. so if you hit a climb, you can crank it up a few clicks without dismounting. and yes, if you set the shock up right, you can get the bike to ride bob-free while seated. for reference, i weigh 215 with gear, and the fox guys recommended 170lbs in the DHX air. they suggest putting in more air pressure and backing off the pro-pedal as necessary for a smooth ride. all around, this is a GREAT bike. i see now what you turner guys have been talking about all these years.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  2. #2
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    TNT Reviews...speculation free.

    I figure it's time to start a thread with actual input rather than lots of guessing, so here are some of the initial reports from people who actually rode a TNT. (thanks fellas)

    Please feel free to add your own experiences on the new designs, or any refrenceable reviews you may have spotted (not what you've heard)...but if you haven't been on one perhaps you could save your speculations for the other threads.

    I'll link each review in the poster's name. If you have follow-up questions or discussions you may want to do that in the source thread, but you can do it here if you think the authors will reply.

    Hope this helps, otherwise delete it.


    *Edit: Man I really hate how the posts somehow get out of chronological order...how the heck do replies get ahead of opening posts? I thought it was a time zone thing but hey these are all from me!
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 09-30-2005 at 08:19 PM.
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  3. #3
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    Scott@GO-RIDE.com
    I didn't test all the models, but I did test the TNT 5 Spot and TNT 6 Pack at the dirt demo, and have both of those bikes with HLs built up at my shop. IMO there is no difference in pedaling and braking. They feel exactly the same to me. However, I did notice a difference in bump performance. The TNT bikes feel more at ease through rocks and rough corners. I'd have to attribute that to a slightly stiffer rear end compared to a HL bike. This is something I've always noticed about the Ventanas.
    Personally, I just don't see any benefit to Turners with HLs. IMO there are a number of bikes out there with HLs.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  4. #4
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    krispy@go-ride.com
    Just got back from the ‘show, and rode the new spot,pack,nitrous and every other 5- 6” trail bike I could find.
    First let me say I could not feel the difference between the old and the new, but I do not own one and only rode each bike for 30 minutes. I did set them up (I carried a shock pump with me and set up each bike carefully)
    This makes me wonder how far foreward the IC really was on the older bikes, especially under sag.
    I feel the biggest difference between the new bikes and the Ventana/Kona etc are the very minor details. The pivot of the Turner is indeed higher than the Ventana is, the turners are in line with a 22t ring. The ventana is below a 22t by a little bit. This matters, as well as the BB height. These combined with the rate the link provides makes for a quicker accelerating Turner. The feel of the rate is not as soft initially and that gives the Turner a bit more initial solid feel.
    If it wasn’t for the flat link of the spot the horst would be worse than a low single pivot. All the horst bikes of the past are more soggy feeling than a low single pivot is if it is not ICT
    I found that between all the vpp bikes I rode and the new turner/single pivot bikes was that you could take a sp bike and put the pivot in a location to mimic the vpp 95%.For instance the Blur feels so damn similar to the heckler it makes me wonder if all those pivots are really worth it. I call it marketing.
    Really what I’m trying to say is that on the graph the old one was 5% better but possibly the new one is stiffer in terms of fighting flex and that is more important to me.I told dave that I was considering a pack but I did not want the horst link and now he makes the bike I want!
    Really there is no God.as long as we have 3 rings to deal with even ICT has its limits,so why not go single pivot and gain some strenght and stiffnes?
    Now if that pivot was just up 10mms or so it would be my personal favorite setup giving a hint of firmness to the granny and a little more snap to the middle ring.
    Kris.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  5. #5
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    Ventanarama
    Well said Cactuscorn. One thing to certainly consider right now....while we only had a short time on the bikes, and not in perfect conditions or setup, the conditions were the same for everything we tested. For example, we still came away from it liking the 6-Pack the best of all the bikes in it's class that we rode. I can also tell you that there were people who didn't even know about or notice the design change until after they rode the bikes (ie: dealers returning from test rides and commenting how much they liked the bikes and then asking if anything was changing from 05' to 06').
    I couldn't disagree more with the generalization that all HL bikes ride similarly and all faux-bar bikes ride the same. Execution of the design, geometry, stiffness, etc. all factor in to the way the bike rides, and this is where Turner excels over some of the lower priced big-brand stuff. You have to look at the whole package and determine what works best for you personally. A well executed faux-bar beats a mediocre (or ill fitting) HL any day IMO. In some cases there may be more similarities than differences, but they are still not the same.
    That's it for now, off for one more night of heavy sleep deprivation, partying, and staring at beautiful women
    Larry Mettler
    http://www.mtnhighcyclery.com
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 09-30-2005 at 08:20 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Tscheezy
    Turner Flux (TNT)- Fox RLT 100/RP3 (4x4"). Fox RLT not a very compliant fork. We got at most 3 of the 4 inches. The Fox may be a bit short for trail use. The front end rode a bit low and the steering was quick, but precise. It railed like all Turners, but some turning ability was sacrificed by the incompliant front and a Maxxis tire which did not hook up that well. The front skated on me a few times. Braking performance was hard to evaluate due to the pea gravel the trails were largely covered with making traction a bit sketchy anyway. The RP3 was also set up firmer than what was optimal for me since I was the lightest rider in the group (CrashTheDOG, Ventanarama, El Beastro, myself, and later Bob the Wheelbuilder joined us). I typically try to evaluate all bikes with a minimum of help from platform shocks so I get a feeling for what the linkage design brings to the pedal stability. With the RP3 set in the minus mode, the bike still pedaled very well, but the rear was a bit less plush than it could have been due to the high main spring pressure, I think. Overall solid. I was not blown away by any of the XC bike we rode (Flux, Giant Trance, Mav ML 7.3).
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  7. #7
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    Tscheezy
    Turner 5-Spot (TNT)- Fox Float 130X/Fox DHX Air (5x5"). I hardly rode this model. It was very light though. Impressively lighter than my 5-Spot as built. I may try to get more time on one tomorrow.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  8. #8
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    Tscheezy
    Turner 6-Pack (TNT)- Fox 36 Van/Fox DHX Coil (6x6"). The Fox 36 Van is a brilliant fork and compliments the Pack perfectly. The height compromises climbing a bit and some ability to moderate height would be nice, but overall performance was excellent and worked in concert with the DHX Coil. This was my first time on the 36 Van, but due to our bike switching I did not spend much time on the 6-Pack, and while on it I was mainly concentrating on the Van. My thoughts on the 6-Pack are well known, and today did not change my impression, TNT or not. A very solid, good pedaling, overall great performing heavy-duty trailbike... Turner 6-Pack- Fox 36 Van/DHX Coil (6.5x6"). Since we took two 6-Packs out this afternoon along with the Nomad, and I got more time on the 36 Van, I thought I'd add a few more comments. This bike just stands out from the other 6" rigs in terms of overall ride quality, and this was a point all of us could pretty much agree on. It just pedals, cruises, climbs, descends, and handles as a complete package in ways that the others could not match, though the Knolly threatens and the 6.6 comes close. I have liked VPPs in the past and was eager to try the Nomad and 6.6, but after squirreling around on all 3 on the same trails, I have no qualms at all about sticking with my 6-Pack. As far as I could tell the TNT version pedals just as well as my Horst version. I will reserve any speculation on braking effects until I can get on some nice firm, grippy but rough ground to do some side by side comparisons, but at this point I can say I can't feel any apparent detriment to braking performance on the Bootleg Canyon trails. It also takes to the 36 Van in a way the other bikes did not. A Z1 or 36 is the fork for this bike imo.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  9. #9
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    Tscheezy
    Turner Nitrous- Fox 80X/Fox RP3 (3x3"). I felt much more at home on this bike this year than last. They specced a shorter stem and a straight post and the increase in cockpit comfort definitely helped in all aspects of handling for me. It is still rocket-ship fast and has a lot of hardtail-like qualities, most notably acceleration. It also takes the edge off trail obstacles very effectively and keeps the rubber in contact with the ground improving traction and steering where a rigid chassis would buck and skate. I personally find the Nitrous to be plenty stiff and it exhibits excellent pedaling manners (I rode it in the minus setting on the PP selector). The 80X worked pretty well and seemed to know when to lock out and not. It is a very quick handling bike but I don't find it to be nervous or twitchy at all. The increased feeling of stability over last year may be due to the shorter cockpit layout due to component choices. It is not a sit back and rail bike like the 5-Spot, and it does require a bit of attention, but it gets up and moves out with authority and alacrity
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  10. #10
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    Tscheezy
    Turner Highline (TNT)- Fox 40RC/Fox DHX Air (8x8"). The frame execution is very impressive. It is burly and to-the-point, and in the raw finish almost industrial looking. Each and every pivot gets a zerk. The main pivot has a zerk in a cool, side-port spot. I got to pedal this one all the way up to the pass at the Caldera Loop, including climbing up sections of the Girl Scout Trail singletrack. The top tube of the size large measured a full 24", but the stem was a pretty diminutive 50mm or so, so the cockpit was pretty short and upright. The weight distribution was not overly rearward as it seems to be on the AS-X, VPFree, and other FR bikes in this class, which helped in climbing noticeably. While not a pleasure to pedal up hills, it was certainly manageable. The Mr Dirt chainguide also came with a single, 36t ring, which added to the challenge, but I was able to muddle through the climb effectively (It didn't hurt that it was the first climb of the day and before the temps rose to the mid-90's). The bike pedals impressively for such a big rig. The weight seemed manageable (compared to the AS-X) and the suspension was not like drowning in a bowl of Jell-o (again, like the AS-X). In fact, even out of the saddle pedaling resulted in negligible movement. Dave obviously knows something about doing single pivots right after experiencing the great pedaling manners of the DHR last year. Descending was smooth and confident. The Turner balance was in full evidence. There was no wheel flop or pushing through corners. The turning behavior was actually surprisingly sprightly for a big rig.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  11. #11
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    2TurnersNotEnough
    I rode both my "classic" Flux and a TNT Flux at the I-Bike demo and the TNT Flux handled identically (what truly distinguishes Turner from other bikes IMHO). Climbing traction seemed to be the same. I don't have the best calibrated butt in the world to tell if braking was any more or less effective in the dirt, but they both seemed to brake the same to me. Suspension action felt identical to me in the bumps and the bike pedaled the same. A poor shock setup will make a MUCH bigger difference in how the bike rides than a different pivot location on the dropout.
    I have been a H-L fan since my AMP B3 from 10+ years ago, and I have an emotional attachment to the classic Turner H-L execution. From the ride of the two versions, they could have been the same bike. Also, if you look at the Nitrous and previously the Stinger, you'll notice that the pivots are much closer to what EW does (probably to get around the FSR patent), so it's not like DT hasn't gone away from the design before. Besides, it was pleasing to me to not see ICT stickers on the '06 frames.
    I have no problem recommending the TNT Flux to a friend of mine that has been longing for a Flux after riding mine.
    Just my $0.02.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  12. #12
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    _MK
    I also liked the ride of the TNT Pack, and I was one of those guys who was unaware of the change until I got back home and yesterday started reading about the TNT. I was gone for good part of last month, therefore I completely missed the whole TNT trauma. At any rate, I wish I was aware of the change at I-bike and have ridden a 5* in order to compare it to mine. All in all, the issue I see with the TNT is that it is almost as good as HL 4-bar and very few people that spend $2K on a frame want to hear that. It might be mere 1.1mm of difference at the axle, yet it is 1.1mm from the nirvana of the classic and as someone who came to Turner when it was sporting the Horst Link, the TNT is simply inferior on paper.
    _MK
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  13. #13
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    El Beastro
    Personally, after riding 2 of the TNT equipped 6Packs, a TNT equipped Nitrous, a TNT equipped Flux, and a TNT equipped 5Spot at I-Bike; the Pack was my one of my 2 favorite bikes of the 25 I rode with the other being a Pugsley. The Turner lineup absolutely rocked!! If the TNT rear end effected the handling, feel, and control of the bike like so many Homers are afraid of, I sure couldn't feel any difference over the Horst link Turners I've ridden, at least not in the conditions we were in.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  14. #14
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    I went to the Turner demo today in Fontana and got the chance to try out a Flux(TNT). Man, what a fun bike! It was light and nimble and seemed to just shoot up the climbs. I took it down a number of rough and rocky descents looking for evidence of brake jack or rear-end stiffening, but never felt it.

    I admit that I was concerned when I read about the design change, but today's test ride certainly removed any reservations I had.

  15. #15
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    velocipus
    I've ridden my pal's 5 spot a couple of times. I've also ridden the Moment. Coming from a Blur, I am highly impressed with the 5spot and Moment's ability to pedal through anything. I was more partial to the 5spot because I've always wanted a Turner and don't feel like I need the beef and bulk of the Moment. The performed equally well. The longer travel on the Moment was nice, but still I was for the Turner. I rode an '06 5 spot at Bootleg Canyon and though it is still a nice ride, I did notice a different. I noticed the "squat" under hard braking. I didn't notice a difference in pedalling efficiency. It is sandy out there and I attributed any sluggishness to that.

    I thought a little brake squat ain't that bad. After all, I'm on a Blur and "squat" is better than "jack" (back end wants to "jack-up" under hard braking). I talked it over with a friend who knows infinately more about rear suspension than I and who sells a lot of Turners. He said, "sure, the new design ain't that bad, but why spend the money on a Turner when you can get a Kona that'll do the same thing?"
    I'm scrapin' up all the cash I can to get an '05 Turner before they're gone... Or maybe I'll wait forthe Ibis

    Let the flaming begin.<!-- / message -->
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  16. #16
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    SkullCrack
    My girlfriend and I went to the Turner Demo today in Fontana. She's been riding a Kona Kikapu for the last year. Today she tried a Five Spot and a Flux. She brought her Kona with her so she could ride it on the same trails as the Turners back to back. She was amazed by how much better she liked the Turners. On a number of occasions, she surprised herself by easily cleaning some technical sections on the Turners she had difficulty with on the Kona. She said she felt much more confident on the Turners and had a huge smile on her face the whole time she was riding them.

    To equate Turners to Konas simply because they share a pivot location is foolish.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  17. #17
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    SlowMoe
    Hey Guys,
    I was able to participate in a true head to head comparison of TNT versus horst link Flux's. I have a 2005 Flux obviously equiped with horst link. My friend got a 2006 demo Flux, obviously with TNT. We rode on Monday. Both bikes are medium. Both bikes have the same rear shock, both shocks had exactly the same pressure. Both bikes also had the same tires front and rear, also with same pressures. The component spec is identical except for the forks. The dirt was perfect. It had rained a couple days earlier, so traction was abundant. We had about a 2 mile paved climb. We traded bikes several times, and could not distinguish a difference in pedaling. Next was about a 4 mile fire road climb. Loose, sandy dirt and fairlt steep and rocky. Again we traded bikes back and forth. We could not tell a difference. We got to the top of the climb and prepared for the descent. We lowered the seats of both bike to the same height. The dh is semi-technical, rocky and very flowy. When we would get to the more technical sections, we would trade backs back and forth. We hit each section several times on each bike. Handling was exactly the same. Which is what you would expect from 2 bikes with identical geometry. What was most interesting was the we could not tell any difference in the more technical sections. We would even brake in turns and over rocks, purposefully making small errors. Again we could not tell them apart. Bottom line-We both had a great time on the ride.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  18. #18
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    Yours Truly
    So here goes: My 1st contribution to the TNT reviews. This thread is Part One: “Getting to Know You” let's consider it a preliminary run for now.
    This was a very hectic day, try as I might I just couldn’t get enough time to do a B2B test. That’s coming though.

    Switching the triangles was easy enough I won’t bore you with the all the details but I do have some thoughts to share on the process.
    1) It went smoothly and quickly.
    2) I realized I needed to have a longer der cable housing since the ferrules are in a different location because of the pivot and dropout change.
    3) I am Totally impressed in Turner quality and consistency! I used exactly the same shims on my brake caliper and it was absolutely dead on! You can’t get this kind of attention to detail from just anyone. We’re talking about two completely different triangles a full production year apart and alignment and caliper placement were identical. Kudos to DT for sweating the nines.

    I by the time I got to the trail I had 1.5 hrs to sundown. Plenty of time to wring this baby out on my favorite loop. The weather has been perfect for riding. The woods a pure treat. My loop consisted of a mixed bag of wet and dry, steep torquey power climbs, plenty of choppy rocks, roots, holes, rollers, a couple of minor drops, and lots of tight and twisty singletrack. Everything anyone in the NE might encounter.

    Now the bad news: You may want to sit down for this.

    My 5 Spot felt just like it did before. That’s really bad news because I know it defies the on-paper predictions. I know you all are going to want to hang me for not finding some kind of difference. To that end I’ll just reserve final conclusions for same day B2B testing. My experience today, for 1.5hours of very familiar trail riding was no different than any other day. The bike felt responsive, plush, controlled and seemed to me exactly like I had it set up before. I dragged my rear brake like a noob…Over every thing I paid very,very careful attention to my pedals and how they felt on climbs in all the gears. I used 22T and 32T rings and the upper half of my 34T cassette. I got no pedal feedback whatsoever on climbing up over rocks, lips roots, fallen trees etc. I got no pedal feedback descending brakes on or off. I dragged my brakes far more than I normally would and every thing was as I recall my HL setup to be.

    The ride just got more fun by the moment. Not because the TNT was magic, but because my bike was as perfect as it always had been when everything was right. Silent, no creaks sqeaks or rattles. No der or chain noise (running a DRS chain tensioner) and above all else totally solid. Maybe, just maybe it felt a little stiffer I don’t know for sure. Let’s just leave that for the B2B as well. I did try a very similarly equipped HL bike from another vendor and I noticed it to be less stiff than my HL. So believe I can tell the difference. I made some minor shock changes (5psi, + half a turn out on the BO) and I certainly felt that. I could feel the difference between 3 -5 clicks on my PP knob, and I prefer to run my shock with only 3 from full out, and 3 from full slow rebound. So I’m not a total lead bottom, and I run a fairly active setup.

    Man, was I having fun though. This would have been a lousy ride if I felt the slightest compromise, I didn’t. Now I’m not yet ready to say both the TNT and HL perform identically, I have some other things I would like to check out first. And doing a reverse B2B, that is going from the TNT to the HL should indicate to me any change I would find significant.(It certainly did going from the RP3 to the DHX) Having spent an hour and a half on this setup and having spent 3 years getting by bike dialed exactly the way I want it, I’m of the mind that any difference I find could be very minor. I’ll withhold final conclusions till then. I imagine if I put either the HL or the TNT in some extreme travel-torque-brake situations I’ll find some artifacts. (I’ll try that next) But for my riding, pushing myself the way I always do…nada. Not once did I get the blahs or felt something was missing (like I did with the RP3) I’ve read some of the our MTBR engineers here could find artifiacts even in the HL setup, so I’ll look for other ways to smoke them out on the trail.

    (BZ insert: it was getting dark)Perhaps another good test because I couldn’t see much of what I was riding over, and only felt my way out. No issues whatsoever. I gotta say from a rider’s perspective, being an average rider, so far, this is a non-issue. There is no question in my mind that going to any other bike would have far greater impact than the change in triangles. Heck even a two clicks on my PP knob had more impact. So did changing tire pressure by 5psi, so did changing BV pressure by 5psi. These changes I DID notice.

    Standard discaimers apply:
    -I'm no expert. Just a average rider at best.
    -My experience is limited to my bike, on my trails, using my riding style.
    -Your milage may very.
    -I could have missed something someone else with more knowledge, experience or different requirements may find.
    -Despite what you may think, I'm not a total focking idiot.

    More to come. This is fun!
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  19. #19
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    The Squeaky Wheel (BZ insert: see author's thread for photos)
    Darren Murphy from PUSH Industries received a TNT rear end from Turner Bikes and asked me to give it a good run. For the purposes of this discussion TNT will refer to the new seatstay pivot and HL for Horst link/chainstay pivot.

    Testing ground was Horsetooth Mountain Park in Fort Collins, CO which offers a variety of first class terrain varying from long fireroad to hard singletrack to loose ball-bearing scree to stairs & drops. It’s biker heaven

    Darren & I are about the same size & weight and our Packs are virtually identical. We use the same DHX spring & have identical control ergonomics so riding his bike is no different than riding my own except that his is unbelievably light due to a lighter wheelset and is stocked with an absurd amount of shiny Ti bling.

    Main components: medium Pack/RF6 with 550 lb spring PUSH’d DHX, PUSH’d Pike Team coil u-turn & 2.35 Kenda Blue Grooves.

    On to the ride….

    Fireroad Climbing: the initial climb is 1500’ of smooth fireroad. Nothing technically demanding here. Just a good old fashioned 25 minute grunt up a fairly steep road.
    I actually think the TNT climbs a tad better on the fireroads. This was quite subtle and I wonder if some of what I felt was due to the decreased weight & rolling resistance of Darren’s bike, but the bike just seemed to bob slightly less under rider input.

    Technical Climbing: I could discern absolutely no difference between the TNT & HL when climbing through the gnar. Both tackle the terrain adeptly with the limiting factor being the human engine.

    Braking: The park offers 1500 feet of elevation and I rode up n’ down a bunch of different trails. The only time I noticed a difference between the TNT/HL rears was on a long section of steps. These steps are 3-4 feet apart and each has an 8-12 inch drop. Plus, there are a couple of 90 deg turns and some large scattered embedded rocks just to keep things interesting.
    The steps are the only time I really depend more on my rear brake than my front since riding the front will result in a nasty endo and a possible 30 foot fall to the downhill side.
    Only on the steps did I notice minor rear end extension, AKA brake jack. It was very mild, manageable and predictable and did not cause any loss of control. After the first few stairs I simply altered my technique to compensate and pretty much forgot it was happening thereafter.
    At no time did I experience a loss of braking traction as has previously been postulated to occur universally on seatstay pivot bikes.

    Dismount? Yeah, right. Let’s hit some stairs.
    (BZ insert: see author's thread for photos)

    Suspension: TNT/HL pretty much identical with one small exception. The TNT rear actually feels slightly more supple on small compressions.

    Stiffness: no difference. Yeah, I know seatstay pivots are supposed to be stiffer but I couldn’t detect it. The Pack/RF6 is just plain rock solid.

    Conclusion:
    Much has been made of TNT and I’m glad I had a chance to ride one. I've read with interest all of the theoretical benefits of HL & ICT but in real life there just isn’t much to it. The bike still rides like a Turner.
    The bottom line is that I wouldn’t hesitate to buy a TNT equipped bike and I’d be perfectly content if I received one on a warranty call.
    Now if I can just get Darren to throw me some Ti…….
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 11-08-2005 at 07:57 AM.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  20. #20
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    Your's truly, again.
    This is my third and final ride on the TNT triangle. The 1st ride was a good long get to know you ride. The 2nd ride was just a fun ride, and a chance to get some trail shots while the fall foliage was still nice. It also gave me a chance to get more familiar with the TNT triangle before the B2B test.

    Sunday, I had to run on a very tight schedule in order to squeeze two rides back to back, plus include wrench time in-between and stay out of the family dog house. Just for the sake of understanding how the whole thing ran, I am including time stamps, based on my stopwatch. I paused the clock for any fiddling, photography or parking lot conversations (Howdy SpongeBob @ Crew!) I did not pause my watch for breathers. Bear in mind this chronological information only not for timing the loops since I paused at different times, places and durations for different reasons.

    I will post my bike build later. The only things changed between runs were:
    Rear triangle
    Rear der housing loop (a slightly longer one required for the TNT)
    Rear der cable (frayed between changes)
    Der hanger (Oh Pleeeazze)
    Other than that, I didn’t even empty my bladder until then end of the day, and I’m not talking about the camelback either. Okay that’s probably too much information. I tend to get mighty focused sometimes.

    NOTE: I will to be my typical wordy over introspective self in this post. If you don’t want all of the mental BS, skip down to the conclusions. If you want to follow along for the ride, then by all means, read on.

    1st Loop: TNT
    @ 0 mins I’m in the driveway loaded up and ready to leave. I start the clock and hit the highway.
    @12 min arrive at the trailhead parking lot. Nice commute eh?
    @27 min after some organizing, pre-ride measuring etc, I’m ready to hit it and head out.

    Pre Ride Measurements:
    Pack filled with standard kit + 1.5L H20
    DHX-C
    BV: 120 PSI
    PP: 2 clicks from full out
    RB: 2 clicks from full slow
    BO: 1 full turn in from full out
    Sag measured at 15 mm fully kitted
    Rider weight fully kitted: 248lbs standing on bathroom scale on top of picnic bench (Yes I brought a scale it with me)
    Front and rear tire pressure: 38 PSI

    @44min I finish climbing up and into the primary loop. This climb was mixed singletrack and carriage, rocky, twisty, roots rolling etc. Lots of good stuff.
    I now enter “Stinger” from the low side.

    This means this trail is mostly climbing too. Much more technical and challenging than what I just finished. Most people take it down. I usually take it up for the challenge in hopes to improve my riding. There are tricky step-ups, logs, roots, tight and twisties, everything NE singletrack is all about.

    I then take quick spin over to “SIS” which is much longer and even more twisty.
    There are fewer super techy things but plenty of things to climb up and over, bigger logs, table-ups and rock spines.

    Plus lots of fun faster pedaling rolling terrain. It’s also a pettier loop. That leaves me off on a rock-garden of a carriage trail to descend on then some more twisty singletrack back to the lot.
    @1h:13m I get back to the lot set my camera down, (Hmmm…) I load-up the bike and drive over to the other lot where there is a ~25 yard wooden staircase.
    The idea here was simulate descending a rock garden but also provide a sustained, regular, repeatable bumpy run. This (in theory) would allow me to focus my attention on how the suspension and the pedals felt. It was not necessarily a test of traction. I wanted to keep moving and I have a shot of the staircase so I don’t take the camera with me. (Hmmm…)

    I make 4 passes down the staircase:
    Pass 1 Moderate even braking
    Pass 2 Strong rearward bias braking
    Pass 3 Light intermittent front braking only (to approximate no brakes but try to keep similar speed)
    Pass 4 Strong rear braking only while pedaling

    @1h:21m I hit the highway and head back home to swap triangles. (In the back of my mind, did I forget something in my haste? Hmmm…)
    @1h:31m I arrive at the house (Did I mention nice commute?)
    @2h:32m Racked and ready: I’m done swapping over to the HL triangle. I lost ~10-20 minuets futzing with a frayed R-Der cable and ultimately put in a new one, and retuned my der.
    @2h:48m I’m back at the main lot

    2nd Loop: HL
    @2h:49m and 59 seconds: Dude! Where’s my Camera!?!?!?! Holy cow It’s not in my gear bin. I stop the clock and search the lot. Yeah like nobody spotted it in the hour since I left. It’s not here. I drive over to the staircase lot, nope not there either. Stupidity is the mother of all upgrades. I restart the clock and repeat the 4-run Stair test on the HL.

    @2h:53m I bounce back to the main lot and start to gear-up. I’m still thinking about the camera and what would I have done with it. Put it on the roof? Wait a sec… there it is wedged in the now dual-purpose roof rack camera keeper. It survived the nasty park roads and two highway trips. Woah, talk about being blessed!
    @3h:05m I finish verifying tire pressure, pack contents, rider weight and sag (now 16 mm) I start loop #2 on the HL Since the sun was setting I didn’t stop much.
    @3h:50m I’m back in the lot it’s dark and I’m ready to go home and think it all over.

    Impressions, thoughts and conclusions:
    Okay here are my thoughts. Having gone back to back, my impressions have changed a bit in some respects and have been confirmed in others.
    Standard disclaimers apply:
    -I am not an expert of any sorts
    -This is a test of how both triangles feel, not a empirical measurement of anything.
    -My impressions are based on my preferences, my experiences, my setup, my terrain, my riding style.
    -Your mileage may vary and quite possibly will.
    -I am very certain about what I felt. Declaring the sources of the differences is beyond my ability.
    -You have every right to dismiss or accept any part of this.
    -I’m still not a focking idiot.

    Also note: My climbing is often very slow, steep and technical. There are times I’m just short of trackstanding. Other times I’ve heard snails yell “on your left!”. My climbing is short and anaerobic, and I still feel like death warmed over after 15 mins. This is nothing like long grueling fireroads or singletrack climbs.(can you tell I’m missing Moab?)

    What’s the same since my last two rides on the TNT:
    I could not detect any pedal feedback on either triangle
    I could not detect any additional bob on the TNT (more on this)
    I could not detect any loss in traction, climbing or descending. PERIOD. I slipped and spun on all the same things, I skipped and dragged in all the same places. Overall both behaved quite the same to me.
    I could not detect any stiffening or jacking. PERIOD. I spent a lot of time on my rear brake.

    What’s different since I could test them B2B on the same day: Better sit down for this…here’s where I’m sure to loose a lot of people’s respect especially if you don’t agree.

    The TNT felt ever so slightly firmer all around. Coasting, pedaling, braking, and climbing. This was to a very small degree. The best way to describe the difference in feel is that it is 3/16 of a shade bluer than dead on pink. What the hell does that mean? Exactly. On the smaller ping-pong-ball sized hits it would feel just a little firmer on the instant impact but climbing up over the peak and dropping off the backside of any sized hit felt exactly like the HL. We’re talking very very subtle. Also you must keep in mind I’ve been riding superduperstupor plush. Consider I was using only 2 clicks of PP, 120PSI and 1 turn of BO, on a 650lb spring under a 248lb rider. That’s redicu-soft so these differences are more apparent. When I was in Moab I hated that setup and immediately boosted my PSI, PP and BO. Even with this slight difference I could not detect any difference in traction while climbing or braking.

    The TNT felt a good deal more confident and I somehow was inspired to push certain things more. The best way to describe it is that the bike stood up more. It had more get-up and go whenever I goosed it. It railed a bit more in the corners. When approaching the last quarter of a techy climb I felt like I wanted to stand and launch earlier than with the HL. And I was rewarded in how the bike responded by ripping up and over the climb. I really enjoyed standing and seated acceleration much more. The HL made me feel I *Had to remain seated. Standing efforts felt less inspiring because of the mid-stroke softness. The HL felt like it was moving more in the midstroke under heavy peadaling. I can’t confirm this but this is the feeling I got. Spinning both felt superb, but the HL felt ever so slightly delayed under acceleration. Remember my super soft setup.

    But again the traction seemed the same between the two. It’s contrary, I know, but I also know what I felt. I did not slip and spin more with either setup. I am trying very hard NOT to say this but I had a bigger grin factor on the TNT However (maybe it’s new-thing-itis) I found myself wanting to to dial in some adjustments to get the HL to pedal like the TNT. I also found I wanted to dial in a tad less edgyness into the TNT. One thing for sure is I’ve been running the HL way too soft, there was just too much motion midstroke, which is something I did not notice until I tried the TNT. To this end I seriously plan on playing with the adjustments on the HL going forward. I wish I had more time to do it that day.

    On the Staircase:
    The one thing that kept going through my mind was “Thumpa thumpa thumpity thump thump!”
    Seriously, I could not tell the difference in either setup. All this proved is decending on medium sized hits these two feel the same.

    Pedal Feedback I found you! (Oh wait no I didn’t.)
    For all you non-experts like me, I would like to share how I almost fooled myself into thinking I found pedal feedback.
    As a test I kept rolling down a short rocky bit of carriage trail. Not too steep. I went back over it several times.
    Brakes on firm & coasting: nothing
    Brakes off & coasting: nothing
    Brakes off & pedaling: nothing
    Brakes on firm & pedaling: POW there it is! The pedals would stop for an instant on every hit bigger than a cantaloupe If I had the brakes on. This did not happen on the smaller hits. I don’t often pedal while braking hard. And it didn’t happen if I wasn’t braking hard and hitting something that big and pedaling all at the same time. What I found was the HL did exactly the same thing. My guess, the tire was locking up the instant of time the wheel was in the air dropping to the ground off the backside of the hit. Both did it to the same degree so I guess it’s NBD.

    Overall conclusions:
    On the sheer matter of performance under my conditions it was a draw.
    For extreme plushness at very low speeds HL has the edge.
    For pedaling and climbing the TNT felt better. Kill me that’s how I felt.
    Braking traction was a draw. Remember my terrain setup and style could be different than yours.

    Climbing traction was the same. Yes I know plusher should have more traction but that’s not what I experienced. Consider the extra plushness was only felt on the initial face of small lowspeed bumps. Everywhere else the difference in plushness was much smaller. This excludes making significant changes to the shock like spring, BO or BV pressures.
    Decending at moderate speeds both felt the same.

    In the end I totally loved my bike with either rear, and the TNT did not once have me thinking about switching back. It did have me considering keeping it though. Sue me.
    The overall differences are as I first said very small. What I explained above is mostly me reaching to find something different between the two. My bike was still absolutely my bike with both setups.

    Because the differences were so small, I would suspect one could easily be tuned to ride like the other.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  21. #21
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    PUSHIND
    Howdy MTBR people and stuff,

    Well, it's true....I have a TNT equipped 6 Pack. What do I think? It Rips. But it's not a HL? I know, weird huh. It Rips. I didn't ride it any differently, I didn't adjust anything. Bolted it up and went. Got done, ate a steak. Good times.

    Dave actually quoted me as being a HL believer and I am. From an engineering standpoint it is a valid design....no question. Can you make a bad HL bike...Absolutley. Can you make a bad Non-HL bike...Absolutely.

    See, the balance and control that one gets from these 2 wheeled machines comes from several items and features, and it's THE SUM of these items and features that equate into a good bike. I think we'll all agree on that. The SUM of the parts is still awesome in my opinion.

    All good bikes have compromises, yes I said it....ALL. There isn't a single bike that has maximum pedalling efficiency, maximum small bump sensitivity, maximum big hit performance, optimum BB height, perfect geometry, etc. The 6 Pack TNT is no exception. It is a great bike.

    Darren
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  22. #22
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    jncarpenter
    (BZ insert: Reminder Click author name for link to orig thread)
    Preliminary Matutinal Thoughts:

    I am not going to offer any extensive conclusions, just yet. I have several familiar epic rides (~30 mi) that I have been doing of late on the HL that I will now mirror on the TNT. Of course I will replicate (ad nauseam) ALL quantifiable variables such as: caloric intake, blood sugar levels, body pH levels, sun screen et al. I have decided to forego the drivetrain conversion (XTR --> X0) until post-TNT reviews....I could foresee the blind disparagement by this forum's present carpet-baggers!

    I will offer this intial impression: WHOA!
    ( I am actually surprised at the definite INCREASE in pedalling firmness. There is no perceivable feedback....the pedalling traits simply FEEL a good bit firmer with the same shock settings. I repeat "THIS SURPRISED ME" & I am going to test these findings extensively. RE: brake feedback, I have not really had opportunity to test this in a suitable "laboratory"...however, so far there are no obvious symptoms. I repeat, this is simply a preliminary response to a moderate ride on the TNT-equipped bike....please reserve the cynical verbal diarrhea for later use; it seems you may need all the help you can get!)

    (BZ insert: 2nd part of prelim review)
    ...I will try & reserve my overall conclusions until I have spent more time on the TNT, however this last comment regarding braking observations from today:

    I am very blessed to have a trail system in the middle of our city that is quite diverse in terrain. There is easily 15 miles of singletrack that is very challenging for the average rider. Fast, rooty/ rocky descents abound. I focused the riding today on riding/ re-riding the same sections with minor adjustments to rider position vs. damping adjustments.

    DISCLAIMER:For the record, the ride today was done sans front brake. One thing I did realize today is I don't typically brake very much...lol. So I had to do alot of "on purpose" braking along sections of DH that I typically would probably avoid when selecting a "line" during descent. I am also predominantly a front brake user & it did take me a few runs at the same section with "rear brake only" to find my sweet spot, positionally.

    I found that varying my body position from a front weight bias to a more rearward bias had the greatest influence on traction. One section where the rear lost a bit of traction initially was remedied by re-riding the same section @ the same speed while shifting my weight a bit rearward. I also was able to replicate this solution by decreasing the rebound damping 3 clicks (faster rebound). I also think, from preliminary results, that the TNT (while braking) is reacting identically (as the HL) to this familiar terrain with this rebound damping adjustment. Initially it seemed that the rebound settings I use for the HL setup were a bit slow (during braking), but once I made this adjustment I never once lost traction or had it "skip" around at all. Again, I have much more testing to do & will conclude with another thorough round or HL tests sans front brake, for comparison.

    I spent a decent amount of time on the HL prior to the swap familiarizing myself with the various characteristics, in preparartion for the TNT tests...and will follow up with the HL for back to back comparisons. I am pretty sensitive to the response of suspension during rear braking from my DH racing backgound and can honestly say that I feel pretty positive regarding my overall, objective evaluation of the TNT. However, as I said, I will reserve the remainder of my thoughts for the final review.

    'Til then.......

    Jay
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  23. #23
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    Not a review exactly, just some prototype porn.

    F*ckin' Good 1134A
    Proto 17











    My video techniques can be found in this thread.

  24. #24
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    jncarpenter
    (BZ insert: reminder click the author's name for link to thread with pix and comments)
    THIRD INSTALLMENT:...having just returned from another long, in-depth, analytical venture, I decided to post my thoughts to keep the wheels spinning.

    This ride was devoted to, again, put the braking traits of the new TNT linkage under the microscope. I adjusted ALL forms of damping control to their minimum setting. First, I did some tests on pavement. I rode flat sections, hilly sections with the ETA engaged to remove input from the fork. Testing the brakes at all different velocities, with all manner of application (hard braking, soft-scrubbing braking, constant-medium braking) I could not feel ANY form of brake induced input. Next, I hit the trails. The trails today were ripe for traction testing given that they were still slightly wet from last nights rainfall, covered with wet leaves & it was around 40 degrees out. Initially the rear was exhibiting some slight hopping over various rooty, rocky sections. I assumed this was due to a rebound setting that was faster than optimal (I selected the fastest rebound setting intially, specifically to test this). I then stopped, returned the rebound to 3 clicks in from full-off & resumed the ride. No more hopping. I tested sections of high speed, off camber corners with front brake only & rear brake only to see if I could notice a variance in rear wheel traction...I could not. I did lose traction with the front wheel several times during this process however (front brake ONLY). That did not surprise me, as I often ( at other times) only add rear braking to stabilize my front wheel traction. I tested on long downhill sections with plenty of roots/ rocks, using a constant moderate applied brake over the whole section & I could literally FEEL my rear wheel staying glued, responding to trail obstacles perfectly, never once stiffening, hopping, or skidding. IMHO, the Hope brakes are the best modulation on the market, I know many have their beef with them, but I have never heard a case against their superior modulation. Because of this, they are a perfect candidate for this test. Once again, I could not discern the loss of traction. Mid-ride, I began to have so much fun railing some sweet technical sections & just flying along on the trails....I forgot I was supposed to be scrutinizing the TNT. I admit it. I am sorry! I quickly came to my senses & resumed my analytical persona. Because I still had an incredible, twisty, fast DH section left in the ride...and because I was now in a seriously aggressive mood , I decided to do some DH/ Moto style turns (body weight slightly forward, inside foot out & forward), which would have been "iffy" today on the HL due to the present trail conditions. Once again, the TNT performed beautifully, the Spot behaving exactly as I have grown to anticipate. I broke traction several times, on purpose, with controlled power-slides through technical turns. The bike reacted as I intuitively anticipated. If I hadn't known better, I would have assumed I was on the HL.

    So again, there you have it. I still cannot flush out any decisive negative braking traits from the TNT. But, don't worry, I am still determined to try.....for a bit longer!
    To those who commented in other threads that someone who cannot detect the difference between the HL rear & the TNT (Low SP), could not tell the difference between the Low SP braking & High SP braking.....absolutely NOT TRUE. I spent a good amount of time on a Yeti AS-X prior to the Spot purchase. There was quite a noticeable difference in brake feel between the two bikes. I still cannot feel a difference in braking between the TNT & HL Turner 5 Spot & I am trying my darndest!!!!!

    More to come.....
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  25. #25
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    DGC
    (BZ insert: Remember to click the Author's name above to link to the orig thread with pix)
    Remember this is for the 05 Turner 5 Spot I own.
    After some good mileage on my local trails, I feel 100% confident in the following results.
    To start with, the change over. Switching from my 05 HL rear end to the TNT 06 rear end was easy, done in minutes. Worthy notes in changeover are the rear caliper mounted up in the exact position as the 05, no rotor rub, no more or less shims needed, exactly spot on. I have run it for 1 week now, today I switched back and forth from the HL to the TNT. In doing so, the bushings felt like they had the same smoothness as mine. Cycle the rear ends and both felt basically the same. Excellent.
    The riding terrain is worth speaking of.
    Any of you having ridden Tahoe a lot, will know what kind of variety we have all around the area. I spend lots of time on granite slabs, on rock strewn trails with boulders, shale rock, baby heads, ledges, roots, berms, ruts, steep technical, twisty, straight fast, and whatever else I can find. Many sections I re-did over and over trying to get as much feedback in my head as possible, climbing and decending both. I kept every aspect of the bike exactly the same, other than the rear ends.
    Up til today, the difference in HL to TNT I could not feel. At least not the performance difference others have so vividly claimed it would be. Remember, numbers dont lie...!!!!

    In the case of HL vs. TNT the rider is what it all comes down to, and by far more important than numbers.

    Speaking of today, the trail was perfect. Tight, twisty, slow and fast sections mixed with sweeper curves and sharp sudden switchbacks, braking bumps, etc.good braking test. Climbing it is steep and granny ring opportunity for sure, lots of good sized rocks everywhere, a few water bars and dips, but everything is bedded in the dirt, solid ground. This is a 1.5 - 2 mile one way distance section of a ride I used for the test, and have ridden a lot before. I would end up climbing up, turn around and bomb down.
    I decided to go a step farther in trying to find some differences in these rear ends. I ran an old school shock, with no platform damping. One of my old Vanilla RC coil shocks, a good 5 years old but in excellent shape.

    Run #1 I started with the same set up as the last 5 rides, TNT rear end and the DHX-A. Then run #2 I switched from the DHX-A to the Vanilla. Man does this sucker bounce. At first, I could tell no difference in braking or climbing, except a lot of bounce climbing that shock, and buttery smooth when on straights. I thought I was onto something in running this shock though.
    Then run #3, I decided to switch to the HL rear end keeping the Vanilla on. As I climbed up the downhill backwards, I thought for sure I had felt something clearly different this time, going up, over, down into a log water bar followed by a good sized sharp rock, same type features except one is round one is sharp. Many places on the trail like this. Felt like I went through it easier/smoother.....??? I redid that spot again. So I went back down and put the TNT rear end back on immediately, still keeping the Vanilla on.
    Run #4 I retraced my tracks exactly. I was kinda bummed though this time, I could not feel the difference I had felt just 15 minutes before. ???. Redid the section again to be sure. felt the same. Now getting baffled.
    (Later on, all I could come up with was i was now warmed up and climbed all of run #3 a little easier now being warmed up and no longer 38 degrees...!!!!)
    Went down and changed yet again to the HL rear end, run #5..... Basically run #3 all over again. Back up to the same spot. Nope, no difference this time. Redid the same spot twice, still no difference. Back down for the last time, switched back to the TNT rear end and DHX-A this time.
    Run #6, faster than run #5 felt. This time I could feel a shock difference. The DHX-A would not sag into its travel as far as the vanilla, and takes a little more force to get moving. With the vanilla I really thought I would feel something different since it was much easier to go deep into the travel where most of the difference is said to be. Run #6 all I could feel different was the more stable chassis with the DHX-A. Finally it was back down for some rest and food. Then it was time to do the entire ride as a loop=about 13 miles. Now riding entirely different terrain, the last 4.5 miles is decending, and into the same lower area as I spent the entire morning riding. Still no detectable change of any kind in braking or climbing, except for that run#3. I believe it was just being warmed up. Run #5 proved that.

    After all of this, I can tell you something I can feel is different.
    The lower stay is beefier. If you get on rutted or off camber ground you might feel more lateral stiffness, you might not. I could feel it a few times. Not all the time. It is stiffer, but not a night and day difference at all. The HL is plenty stiff. The TNT is laterally stiffer, and some riders might feel it, some might not, the difference is minimal.

    Thats really it, I thought I had felt it on run #3, once you block out the vanilla bounce, and focus on whats happening late in the stroke then the rider can feel whats going on. Sooooo, on paper its supposed to be there, but to the rider it seems to be damn hard if not impossible to feel. Others having posted on TNT experiences have basically reported similar.
    I personally prefer to run the TNT rear end. It looks stiffer and cool, It feels stiffer at times, It wont make you go faster, it does not change the shifting, the ride experience is exactly the same-all smiles and lots of fun. Now if DT will put a 12mm axle on it and get King to make a hub for it.....yummy!
    P.S.....time to put all this HL vs. TNT to bed. Unless someone can show me a better way to FEEL the difference while riding, I am convinced TNT is perfectly fine, at least as good if not better than the HL was.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  26. #26
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    Ignazjr
    (BZ insert...click link in author's name to view orig thread with comments and pic)

    I recently received a new TNT rear end from Turner to see if my customers or I can tell a difference in the 2 rear ends. I'm a big believer in the "sell what you ride" mantra and I was a bit skeptical of the move away from the Horst Link. It was important for me to find out first hand if there really is a difference in the 2. It's one thing to say, "hey, I have a Horst Link bike, but other folks have the TNT and they can't tell a difference." It's another thing, though, to say, "Ride it yourself and see if you can tell." A majority of my customers (before the TNT deal) have mentioned that they really like the Horst Link, so I was sweating it!

    I've read many reviews of the TNT rear mounted on the 5 Spot, so I bolted it up to the demo Flux that we have.

    I was eager to get out on the bike. To keep my review as objective as I could, I hit the local trail that's rideable from town. Everyone has one - it may or may not be rideable from your door, but everyone has one trail that they have every rock, root, corner, and drop memorized. Hall Ranch in Lyons, CO would be my first ride. It's a fast, desert like ride with lots of fast swoopy sections as well as lots of rocks and boulders.

    Out the door and on the road finally and it still felt like the same ol' Flux. I got up and sprinted, and sat and spun, but it felt like the same bike I'd been riding for a year. Once I hit dirt, though, I figured I would be able to tell a difference. The Horst rear end will likely be more active on the climb and will surely be perceptible on the rough downhill, I thought. I hit the dirt and began a longish climb of mixed double track and singletrack. The first part of the climb is very rocky and wide- nothing technical, but lots of small sharp bumpy rocks; the kind of climb that is a little too bumpy on a hardtail. The TNT Flux was smooth as butter, just like the Horst Link Flux. Onto the singletrack and I was trucking along as usual. The trail has a couple of rock cavities and bigger wheel sucking type bumps. Still no change. And so it went for the rest of the climb.

    Hall Ranch has some very, very rocky sections that are a blast on the downhill. There are quite a few parts where the corners are rocky and washed out, the type that you hit at full speed, then on the brakes in the roughest part. This, I thought, is where the Horst Link would prove it's superiority. Again, I was wrong. I thrashed the descent in the same way that I ride it with the 5 Spot. I stuffed the corners I usually stuff, hit the drops the same, and rode all the rough stuff with no real detectable difference in the ride. I was able to notice, though, a very, very small difference in lateral rear end stiffness. I attribute this difference to the solid chunk of aluminum on the rear as opposed to the 3 webbed fingers of the Horst Link design.

    Since that initial ride, I've taken the TNT Flux out on tighter, more technical woods riding with the same conclusion. In the end, really, it is hard to swallow the fact that the Horst Link marketing mumbo jumbo is just that, especially after communicating it myself for years. I swapped the rear end over and changed absolutely nothing else on the bike. I could not tell a functionaly difference between the 2 rear ends.

    I have this sucker ready to bolt onto the 5 Spot, too. The proof really is in the pudding. I'm happy for Dave that he got out of the licensing deals and came away with a bike that performs the same. Happy Trails!
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  27. #27
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    Superstock
    (BZinsert: Click author's name for link to thread with comments, pix and Video! )

    Its that time of year to update the 5 spot with a fresh frame so I order one up (gotta go with the green this time) but hear that they are out of the HL version and only have TNT from this point on. There have been a lot of TNT reviews and they have all said good things about it but I want to test it myself. I want to evaluate it where I do a lot of my riding and can really concentrate on the bike. I’ve been riding this local spot for over ten years. Five of those years have been on an RFX and couple 5 spots. If there is a difference, I’m sure I will be able to tell riding here.

    Here is the plan: take my existing HL five spot and run it through a battery of tests in all sorts of conditions: banked turns, flat turns, stutter bumps, braking, rock technical sections, drops, jumps, rocky climbs and steep, loose climbs. Then, with the help of my two buds, tear down the HL (blue) and build up the TNT (green). Everything will be exactly the same: same wheels and tires, tire pressure, fork settings, brakes, cranks and I will even take the same DHXA off of blue on put it on Kermit so we will have identical rear shock settings. Then take the TNT bike out and perform the same exact tests. To make it even better, we will videotape the test sections for all to see.

    The big point of discussion about the TNT design is the braking and I want to test how active each of the two different designs can stay under bumpy conditions. To set up a test that is as objective as possible, I decided to try to do a brake to stop test. I picked out a section of singletrack that is hardpack and has rocks embedded in it, marked a line across the trail and make multiple runs at it. I have a cycling computer that will record my max speed on each run to record any variation in speed. Since I’m going down hill, the max speed should be my speed right before I hit the brakes. I will use the rear brake only and try to modulate as best as I can until coming to a complete stop.

    Okay, time to ride. A little rain the day before but now its sunny which makes for some ideal conditions.

    1) BRAKE TEST

    First off is the brake test. Lets try not to over analyze this or armchair engineer my methods. Take this for what it is. A real person in the real world trying to see if there is a difference in performance! I took two runs with bike each as practice to get the dirt primed up and to get myself synced into the test.

    HL: Distance to stop / speed
    Run 1: 44’ 0” @ 18.2 mph
    Run 2: 40’ 0” @ 18.2 mph
    Run 3: 41’ 6” @ 19.0 mph
    Run 4: 40’ 0” @ 18.2 mph

    Now lets fast forward 3 hours to the TNT brake test:

    TNT: Distance to stop / speed
    Run 1: 40’ 0” (didn’t reset the computer DOH!)
    Run 2: 40’ 8” @ 18.5 mph
    Run 3: 43’ 1” @18.8 mph
    Run 4: 41’ 10” @ 19.1 mph

    We noticed that the soil had dried out a bit more by this time of the day. But, as you can see, the ranges for each design were very similar (40 to 44 for the HL and 40 to 43.1 for the TNT). Could the rider tell any difference in the braking? No. Do the numbers support what I was feeling? Yes.

    2) Cornering

    Alright, put away the tape measure. The rest of tests are all about the ride! Lets start with cornering. The first type of corner I tried was a banked sweeper. I hit the turn at 27 mph on the HL. It felt good. Nice and stable, a little drift but very predictable. Same thing with the TNT. I hit the same turn at 26.5 mph. It felt like the good ol’ 5 spot I have come to love. Next I tried out a tighter flat turn, the type where you want to put your outside down and countersteer. Couldn’t tell a difference between the two @ 21 mph. Now we have a tight, downhill turn with some stutter bumps. I’m going to use some brakes over the bumps in the turn even though you’re not supposed to. I hit it @ 23 mph on the HL and it felt good. I had a little drift but again very predictable. I hit it on the TNT at 22.5 mph and it felt good too. A little drift and some good exit speed.

    Now, there is a tight turn at the top of the trail that is banked and you can get good traction in it. Good enough that you can go pedals level and really push the bike into the turn and get a pump out of it. I didn’t have this section of my test checklist but I rode both bikes on this section. When I hopped on TNT and started making my way down the singletrack, I was instantly comfortable on the bike. It sure felt good, like my old Spot. When I came through this turn, I had the bike leaned over pretty good and I gave it a good pump. Wow, it squirted through that turn without any indication of wanting to go anywhere but where I was pointing it. Is the rear of this bike stiffer? It sure feels like it is.

    3) Decending

    Now lets do some technical decending. There is a ‘waterfall’ section that can be a bit rough. I hit it on the HL and bottomed the rear pretty good. The bike felt good and I felt in control the whole time. I hit it on the TNT and it really felt the same. The bottom out seemed to be a bit less harsh but that could be because of a slightly different line. Next up we have very steep roll in. You’ll see it on the video and the video just doesn’t do it justice. When you’re rolling up to it, you can’t see the actual face of it until your front wheel is already going down. Anyways both bikes seemed to handle this beast with equal aptitude. I extended the TST on my Z1 light to go to the full 150mm for this. Now we go over for a little drop action. It’s a 3 or 4 footer to a nice tranny with a little gap you need to clear. Again both bikes handles this very well only bottoming out softly.

    Up the road a bit we have a nice double jump that some of the local riders just put in. It isn’t big but it is fun because it’s right out of a turn. I again felt very comfortable on both bikes. Check out the video.

    4) Climbing

    Alright, the last part of the test involves climbing back up to the car. I choose two sections of single track to test on. One that is steep and loose. You have to be on it to clean it. Chest down and smooth with the pedal power in granny and you’ll get it. I was able to clean it with both bikes. I didn’t notice any difference in traction in the bumps or going over the loose rocks. The next section of trail is a long uphill with some embedded rocks. Its generally a 1-1 granny ring accent. I was paying attention to the activeness of the rear suspension while climbing and any pedal feedback. I was rolling over rocks and dumping the rear tire into ruts and holes. I could not perceive any pedal feedback in either design (it was a different story back in the day on my GT LTS and RTS …). Now, the activeness of the rear seemed to be a little different to me. It seemed that the TNT was a little plusher while peddling over the rocks. Just a little more give than the HL. I’m not completely certain about this but it did feel a bit more compliant to the terrain.

    Conclusion. I was a bit skeptical but I have proven to myself that the TNT 5 Spot is just as good as the HL 5 Spot. It felt great riding it on my home turf and I could not find fault with TNT and I found it to be better in certain situations. I was originally going to hang on to the HL spot for a while just in case but now I think I will put it up for sale now.

    Read the test, watch the video and decide for yourself.

    TNT HL Video (<===Link)

    Note: The video will first show the HL (blue frame) then the TNT (green). The only exception is the brake test. The video got messed up with the HL footage (camera was recording when you thought it was off and vice versa - you have all done this).

    S

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  28. #28
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    SSINGA
    (BZ Insert: Reminder click author's name for link to orig thread with comments and pic)

    I’m not an engineer but I have been pedaling a variety of suspension designs around the woods for a long while. That is the only credential I have so don't go asking for much past what I have already written here. I have owned ATLAS and ICT bikes from E as well as the K2 version of DT’s Stinger. To round out the list I spent a good number of years on a GT STS and a SC Bullit. All had some good traits but none were ideal. I only recently (early spring of 2005) came to the Turner camp looking for something better. I found it in the form of a 6 pack. It is my only bike and gets used for everything from pulling a trail-a-bike to DH racing and everything in-between. Well, there is not much I can say here that hasn’t been written, photographed, filmed, graphed, measured and analyzed to the “dead horse” point in the hundreds of posts before mine but here it is.

    My setup:
    <O</O

    2005 6 Pack front triangle with 2002 RFX 5” rockers. I ran a DHX Air and a ZAM1 in 130mm mode for the test. The TNT rear was the 5 Spot flavor. I know, not a very “pristine” set-up for proving a suspension design but it’s what I had – deal with it!

    <O</O
    The ride:

    Due to weather issues the ride was cut short to about 14 miles, but I think that was long enough to see how it performed. The trail featured a lot of climbing over very rocky; root crossed and loose washed out terrain. Once all the climbing was done there were long sections of technical single track DH and a very long, high speed fire road DH.

    <O</O
    My Methods:

    <O</O
    I hung out at the back of the pack in an attempt to take the ugliest lines possible on the climbs (yeah right – good excuse though). I hit every root and rock I could see (and some I couldn’t) to try to get some pedal feedback. Never happened. I tried granny and middle ring experiencing excellent traction in every situation. On the DH sections I hit the brakes at all the wrong times in an attempt to lock out the suspension or experience the dreaded “brake jack” (as a one-time 2001 SC Bullit owner I am very familiar with these symptoms) but it just wasn’t noticeable. The fire road DH hit speeds of 27mph and it just railed through the unbanked corners. The TNT might be a hair stiffer laterally than the HL but I can’t say for sure unless I did back-to-back testing which wasn’t possible Saturday. <O</O

    <O</O
    My conclusion:

    <O</O
    IT’S STILL A TURNER!!

    <O</O
    It was a fantastic ride. I never had the feeling where I wished I had just left the HL unit on the bike. I can honestly say that I would have no problems (performance related) with getting a TNT rear should I ever break my HL rear assembly. My only problem with the TNT rear is the aesthetics. Next to the HL unit its look is industrial blah. Should DT add a little more CNC work and keep the stiffness I’d be totally happy.

    <O</O

    SS
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  29. #29
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    kosmo
    (BZ insert:click on author's name for link to orig thread)

    Well, even with winter here, I had to try it out. Just one ride, but somewhat enlightening. Will post more when I get 3 or 4 rides in.

    RIDER: 6’2”, 195 lb. I primarily prefer long, rugged, somewhat technical xc riding, but manage to sneak over to Moab/Fruita/St. George twice a year for rock riding. A little MX in my blood, but it’s been a longggggg time. I ride a bunch, logging near 2k miles a year on the Spot, and 4k a year on the road bike, with the local racer boys. I like up moves as much or more than down moves.

    THE TEST RIDE: As mentioned, winter is here, so riding was limited to going up and down three steep, rocky, technical trails, each about 20 minutes up and 10 down. So no fast, flowing single track. I’ve ridden these trails countless times over the years. They are three of our standard winter rides, since they drain and dry up very quickly.

    CLIMBING: It climbed great. It seemed a bit more sprightly than the HL. Maybe the words would be more “taut” and “lively” in terms of accelerating to make upward technical moves. It tracked more dead-on when the power was really laid down to make it up some of the bigger rock moves, so I think the rear is stiffer without the HL pivot between the crank and rear axle.

    DESCENDING: If pressed, I would say it felt more sure-footed when descending through rock gardens. Less tendency to deflect off line. But it was slight. Everywhere else, I didn’t notice any difference.

    TECHNICAL: Already covered a bit above, but definitely a stiffer, more precise feel. Easier to keep on line, and when I was a little off, and had to lunge up a move, less deflection was present.

    BRAKING: I didn’t notice any difference here, either. Maybe it would be different on flowing single track with choppy entrances to corners.

    CONCLUSION: For me, the slight increase in rear end stiffness more than compensates for any of the perceived detractions of the TNT -- which I didn’t notice, anyway, on this brief test ride. I wouldn’t go back to HL voluntarily. In summary, it makes what was already my favorite bike of all time even better.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  30. #30
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    velo bum
    (BZ insert: Click author's name for link to orig thread)

    After riding a Flux for almost 14 months and riding the TNT rear for about a month in SO. CAL. alpine and dez. conditions these are my U. P. W. T. 2 cents worth.

    Going into this I felt there would be differences in the two, and that there would be positives to both.Well there was, although they are slight and very minor in my opinion, and not really what I thought they would be.

    I'm 145 lbs. and was running 140 psi w/4 clicks in on rebound w/a 06 RP3 w/the HL. I started w/this set up on the TNT as well and the bike seemed sluggish so I took all the rebound out but couldn't get it where I wanted it. Having been through this w/my Nitrous already, I pulled the 05 RP3 off of it that Darren has been into and bingo(I don't know what he does but it sure does work), 140 PSI and 1 click in and life is good.

    First ride impression was that the HL felt a bit more lively heading out the shop on pavment, but as soon as I started to climb the TNT felt to have better forward acceleration(once again these are slight differences). The HL seems to be a bit plusher on tech. type climbs, but the TNT just seems to have better snap when you stand on it or climb over a water bar or rocky ledge. I will say, although they feel a bit different here, I'm making the exact same climbs and screwing up on they exact same stuff I have been all along w/the Flux. Both bikes have more then enough traction. Also, along w/the better climb feel, the TNT goes through sand better for some reason.

    OK, going down. When it comes to the climbs I would take either, but to my big suprise I think my vote goes to the TNT when it comes to going down. Say what you want, but I've been on this bike as long(if not longer)as anyone and have been riding the same trails for ever and thats how I feel. So here it is. First off, the rear feels stiffer, even for my skinny arsse. Crossing ruts and cornering are improved. When braking the HL feels plusher, but the TNT sets in the travel a bit, which I like alot. Although the TNT seems to be deflecting a bit more off stuff in the rear, the lack of weight transfer to the front out weighs this for me. I'm going faster in the rough stuff and braking later into the corners. Even though the rear brake is not as positive, I'm able to use the front harder. I would give the nod to the HL in braking on real steep slow speed stuff for a bit better feel.

    I have been riding the TNT alot and going back and forth, trying to make up my mind, and I can't say there is a clear cut winner. For me, I guess I 'll stick w/the TNT just simply because it is and the HL isn't anymore. It may not be for everyone, but the HL wasn't either. Thats the beauty I guess, there are alot of choices and we are all free to make our own. Some have said that the quality w/out compromise means nothing now, but to me it means more. David has built an equal quality bike in both ride and build w/out compromising his self or his company at the expense of someone else. With a decline in morals and ethics this is nice to see for me.

    I'll take this time to say thanks to David and everyone at Turner Bikes for making great bikes that have made my riding enjoyment all the better for many a year, and for being the best co., period, in the industry for me to deal w/on all levels, and most of all for becoming great friends along the way. Thanks again David, Greg, and Casey(cowboy up!), and to the newer faces there that I'm sure I'll get to know better as well.

    VB
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  31. #31
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    ride424
    (BZ insert: Click author's name for link to orig thread (2nd post))

    Finally the snow has stopped falling and I was able to go out and ride the new TNT rear end the boys at Turner sent for me and other local Flux riders to get our opinions. I'll start off with a little history of myself, I think this is important to know when someone is giving his or her opinion on how something rides. I've been racing bikes for over 10 years and riding for more than 15, I come from the hardtail school and was very aprehensive when going to full suspension. 5 years ago I started my quest to find a bike that works, no turning a switch, adjusting a dial, or pulling a lever, plain and simple the bike should ride correctly without relying on the shock.

    The answer was a Turner, the bike just simply worked, geat uphill, downhill, corners and anything in between. Turner bikes have allowed me to be very successfull in the 24hr solo scene and I trully think they give me an advantage. All that being said here is my thoughts on the TNT rear end for the Flux.

    Climbing- in the saddle I noticed nothing, out of the saddle it felt stiffer +++
    Cornering- Very stable and still rockets out of the corners +++
    Downhill_ YEE HAA even better, in fact the O-Ring fell off the shock +++

    Over all it is my opinion that the new TNT rear end is better because it's DAVES, and he knows how to build frames. I think if it were possible to blind fold a rider and let them test both the HL and the TNT side by side there would only be a handfull of people who could tell you which one they rode. Oh by the way my Flux has been PUSH'd front and rear which I highly recomend !
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  32. #32
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    AndyN
    (BZ Insert: Click on Author's name for link to orig thread w/ pic & comments)

    Being a Horst-link believer for so long, and that being a major reason for the purchase of my 5 spot, I was quite saddened when the news of TNT broke. Slowly the speculation gave way to reviews by many Homers whose opinions I have come to respect over the past couple of years. I began to come around in my thinking. Maybe the HL was all just marketing BS, after all the world is full of it.

    I had to find out for myself.

    My review-

    I won't go into too much detail on the many areas that my experience paralleled that of the previous reviewers.

    Braking- Noticeable lack of extension in the rear when braking only with the rear brake, at first I thought it was squat but after watching the shock I found it wasn't compressing. This did indeed give a stablizing feel, if traction was affected I couldn't feel it.

    Cornering- Stiffer rear end, despite the argument of others, I do not attribute this to the TNT rear being new and the HL old. When braking into a corner the bike felt more balanced front to rear, I'm guessing this is because of the lesser amount of extension in the rear. I can't say for sure what the reason, but the TNT felt better in the corners than the HL did.

    Pedaling- A firmer feel on the TNT, maybe less compliant would be a better description. After returning to the HL after three weeks on TNT, the HL felt smoother on small bumps. I think the TNT may pedal better while standing and mashing but I can't say for sure.

    Now there was only one real test left to ease my worries about the prospect on my HL being replaced with TNT.

    Steeper, looser, and longer than it looks in this photogragh, this section of tight singletrack is unforgiving when it comes to traction, front end lifting, and if even for a second you lose your line.

    Whenever I make changes to my ride, stem length, new fork, saddle postion and so on, I use this hill to see what effects it will have on super steep loose climbs.Over the past year and a half I have gome from a 110mm stem down to a 50mm, 110 to 100, 100 to 90, 90 to 70, and finally 70 to 50. Each stem change significantly changed the body position required to make this climb. The same held true for the switch from the Vanilla to the Marzocchi, the slacker head angle really made me work to get up this hill. But with every change if I just gave everything I had and stayed forward the rear end would hook up flawlessly and I'd power up it. Only on one occasion did I have to make a second attempt to clean the hill, this was after the 70 to 50mm stem length change, which I guess just caught me off guard. Bottom line, if I can still climb this hill with TNT, then all is good.

    On the first day attempting this hill with the TNT rear I failed 14 of 14 tries. I was crushed, and exhausted. I drove home after the beat down wondering what the hell could have been wrong.

    Two days later I went back, angry. That f-ing hill was mine.

    Nope, 8 tries and 8 failures.

    Every possible adjustment was made to make it up with the TNT rear, shock settings, pressures, body position, full out mashing on the pedals, steady cadence, you name it.

    My conclusion as to the reason for failure; I was unable to keep the front end down and maintain traction at the same time. Was the rear squatting under power? It felt like it. Did the rear end hook up as well as the HL? No.

    I went back the next day after reinstalling the HL rear and made it up on the first try usual.

    I'm sure that by making adjustments to my ride that I could make it up with the TNT rear, but those adjustments would surely have a negative effect on descending.

    I'd be very interested to hear other Homer's experiences in similar conditions. Basically find a super steep and loose granny gear climb, and see if you too can't feel a difference in favor of the HL.

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  33. #33
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    Aquaholic
    (BZ Insert: Click author's name for link to orig thread with pics, videos and comments)

    The thread [created] by Andy N prompted me to share my thoughts on the TNT rear end. But, rather than share with you overall impressions (which really mirror what others have experienced), I'd like to just focus on climbing, for now.

    I really wanted to get a few more weeks under my chamois before I posted this.

    But since it is being discussed, [in his thread]....here's my thoughts on the TNT rear end as far as climbing goes.

    Like AndyN, I use the Waterfall climb at Noble Canyon to gauge and compare any changes that I make to my bike. If I change frames, bar height, tires, shock settings, etc. this is the one climb where any backward moves on component choice or setup, will be readily apparent.

    The waterfall climb is very steep and long. It is extremely loose. There is hardly any run in leading up to it and the tight righthander leading in, is filled with sharp pieces of granite which tend to scrub your speed or wash your front tire.

    It goes steep immediately after the right turn. 1/3 of the way up you hit a series of steps and ledges. If you lose your momentum and stall your rear tire will spin out and your done. Dabbing to the right is not an option. You will freefall 50 feet into the canyon below. I've seen it happen plenty of times.

    Most riders dismount and walk this section. They are probably the smart ones.

    I've linked to Fooriders for 3 vids of the waterfall climb.

    I've posted this video before and you've no doubt seen images of this climb many times.

    (BZ Insert: Vid link =====> ) http://www.fooriders.com/webmain/in...=279397&t=55970

    The first vid is my old red 5 spot with Horst Link. (Romic rear shock).

    The second vid is my new 5Pack with the TNT (Fox DHXa) rear end.

    The third vid is Rodman on a late model heckler (5th elephant rear shock).

    Of note, is the way Rodman approaches this climb, he is in a low gear. Granny up front and 1 or two in the rear. So he's hitting this climb in an exteremly low gear as AndyN describes below. You can see him stall as soon as he hits the steep part and the rear wheel loses traction.

    I think that attempting these types of climbs(like what AndyN depicts), in too low a gear, regardless of what type of rear end or bike you have, is going to hamper one's results.

    So, I'll let the vids speak for themselves as far as comparing the TNT rear end to a Horst link.

    It makes no difference to me whether I have the Horst link rear end or TNT rear end. The results are the same. I adapted to any nuances almost immediately with the TNT rear end.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  34. #34
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    Fair enough Steve. It's a slippery slope not to over manage, esp since I'm not a moderator. The req has been made. Hope not to offend anyone.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  35. #35
    No, that's not phonetic
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    Here's the Flux review from Mountain Bike Action. They spend a lot of time talking about TNT.





    My video techniques can be found in this thread.

  36. #36
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    Superstock
    (BZ insert: author's name is link to source thread)

    Hey guys,

    I know this topic has been discussed in painful detail but I did want to follow up on the HL/TNT test I did back in early December:

    5 Spot HL/TNT test with video

    I have ridden the TNT quite a bit since then. A lot of it has been on the same trails in the video but I've also hit some steep, rocky and loose decents as well. I was a bit worried about this one decent in particular because you really want the rear to be compiant to the terrian to maximize traction while braking. The TNT works great in this section. I kept dialing up the speed run after run and I didn't feel any negative traits when on the binders hard. In fact, the bike felt really comfortable and I'm hitting these sections as confident as ever.

    My conclusion is still the same. TNT rides just like HL. Anyone else have some long term feedback?

    Check out this short video clip - a drop to ladder hit with some rocks in between that makes it a little more interesting. The ladder goes a bit out of frame but you can hear it:

    CLIP

    S
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  37. #37
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    Highline reviews since it hasn't been covered.

    Skullcrack
    (click author's name for link to thread with pics and comments)
    I had the good fortune to take a Highline out for a ride today. It was one of the bikes from the Dirt Demo, but had been fitted with a front derailleur. Unfortunately I didn't have a lot of time, but I got a chance to try it out on a little bit of everything, from climbs and technical singletrack descents to some faster descending and a couple drops. I'm not as eloquent as others on here, so I'll keep it short and sweet. The bike rips. I pointed it at stuff that would give me pause when I'm on the Pack, and it just ate it up no problem. The balance was good. The climbing was I think as good as you can expect from a bike like this. The back end hooked up well, and there wasn't very much bob, even with the ProPedal dialed all the way out.

    The construction is excellent, as is the attention to detail. For everyone that's been waiting patiently for this bike, you won't be disappointed.
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 02-23-2006 at 05:58 PM.
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  38. #38
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    .downhillfaster.
    had the good fortune to meet DT and test ride one of these gems yesterday at South Mountain here in Phoenix. As Dave will attest, my first words post ride were "Thanks for creating my next bike".

    I'm not for a whole lot of words, but I will say this - the bike is incredible. The rear travel felt like I never hit bottom. The geometry was spot on, I felt comfortable immediately as soon as I got on it. The whole package was so solid, it matches very well with the DH 40. I swear it felt like it was a 40-42 lb build with some fairly "weighty" parts on it...with some careful consideration and a little more $$$, you could realistically get it into the 37lb range, which would be my desire. I only rode it "uphill" in one section of the trail, and it climbed like a freakin' monkey on crack...


    The plan - sell my 2005 Enduro Expert, and the frame/shock of my RMX DH bike...move parts over to a new Highline before the season gets here...this bike could easily serve double duty for me as an all around bike...but still allow me to get my DH fix in on the weekends. I've already been in contact with Ryan at Kore bikes, just waiting to find out the lead time on one of these bad boys!

    Eric
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 02-23-2006 at 05:55 PM.
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  39. #39
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    coma13
    (BZ Insert: Click author's name for link to thread with pics and comments)

    Alright.... I got a chance to demo a Large Turner Highline today with a Fox 40 and DHX 5.0... As a little background I ride a Specialized Enduro Expert with a Fox 36 and 5th Element coil.

    I took it out to Ted Williams and upon pedaling around it felt super comfortable and felt almost like a bigger version of my Enduro. It was really nimble and it didn't feel like I was riding a very big bike at all. I got to "the pond" and rode around, did some little rocky roll-ins and a little hip and started to feel pretty at home on the bike already.

    We then piled in and shuttled up to the top. We took a trail that is really fast with railable berms, some decent rockgardens, and a few small doubles. Already I was amazed by how good the bike handled, it just floated through the rock gardens like nothing and I was able to carry a ton of speed in places that had me lurching to a stop on prior tries. I was concerned that the cornering wouldn't be very good but I just layed it over and away it went, tracking beautifully.

    We the sessioned some good sized step downs, which I had never tried on my other bike. I followed someone in and hit them both first try. Very confidence inspiring. Here's a long distance picture of me hitting the smaller of the two: BZ insert: link to pix ===> HERE

    note: you can't see the take off of this jump but it's just a little further up the hill, it's nothing gigantic but it's pretty good sized.)

    The bike wasn't 100% the reason for that though, the Fox 40 was dope! I landed really nose heavy on the bigger one and it didn't feel harsh at all.

    We took several other runs, one though an extremely rocky creek bed with many rock waterfalls and technical stuff, again, I was just floating through with speed I had never been able to carry before. We sessioned the jumps at the bottom some more and I pussed out on one road gap, I felt that two new big jumps were enough for me that day. Here's a shot of a local shredder named Connor hitting it with some steeze:

    once again, this picture doesn't really do justice to the size of the jump)
    Reminder pictures found Here

    We went back up for one final run and took a trail that features two road gaps in a row. Once again, something I had never tried before on my other bike, I felt right at home doing on the Highline, I came in and hit the first one perfectly, and kept railing down the trail to the second one. People had said you have to go slower for the second one than the first but I figured I'd be alright... I was wrong, I pulled a huge sky-wheelie and overcleared the landing by aobut 8 or 10 feet, landed directly in a rut, and rode it out no problem, didn't even bottom the bike or feel out of control at all. I went back up and hit them one more time perfectly and continued on down.

    All in all I have to say this bike rules. Seriously. I am almost 100% sure this will be my next bike and I recommend trying one if you get a chance.

    While were' at it, check out this picture of another local shredder hitting a huuuuuuuuuuge step down. It's about 45' top of lip to top of landing and he landed about 8 feet down the landing.
    (the landing for this isn't even in the frame, it's big!)
    Today was a great freaking day, and the Highline is a great freaking bike.<!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

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    Faster is better, even when it's not.

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    From Bike Magazine...
    Attached Images Attached Images
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  42. #42
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    RFX TNT in St. George

    Just got back from a week with the new RFX TNT in St. George/Gooseberry/Little Creek. Loved it. Previous trips were on the Spot, and while this trip led us to drops we had previously considered the domain of only the young and talented (or crazy), my group's first love is still tricky technical climbing moves, many of which are off the trail and shown to us by the great Morgan Harris, one of the original creators of the Goose and Little Creek trail systems.

    In short, the RFX made every technical climbing move the HL Spot ever did, as well as a few new ones we hadn't seen before. In the world of horse jumping, you could say that there were no refusals!

    This will be my last TNT post, cuz it seems dead anyway, and I've got it on both the Spot and RFX, and I'm not looking back.

    Related topic -- big thanks to Tscheezy and El Chingon for coaxing us semi-oldsters up to 3 or 4 feet on the first half of the trip. That led to 5 feet by trip's end, and after seeing the pix, my wife is said she doesn't even want to imagine what would be in store if we lived out there! Thanks again guys!
    Whining is not a strategy.

  43. #43
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    I finally had a chance to test a TNT rear triangle on my Spot.

    I've had the TNT in my possession for quite a few weeks. Unfortunately, we set all kinds of records for precipitation during that time. Most of the TNT rides were either in lots of mud or sand, or both.

    I bolted on the TNT. It mated just fine with my 2003 Spot frame.... No surprise there.

    After riding for just a few hours, it was clearly obvious that if there was a difference between the HL and TNT, I wasn't going to see it in these conditions. I thought that the TNT felt a bit better pedaling out of the saddle, but I wasn't sure. I let a friend ride my bike for a while with the TNT. He had ridden my HL bike before and I was curious if he'd notice a difference. Nope! He never even realized that it was a completely different rear triangle (I added mud to the TNT to make it look like the rest of my bike )

    Even though I never got to see how it handles very technical climbing or jumps, it's clear that the difference, if any, must be so small as to be a complete non-issue. I did go down some pretty steep, rutted hills to test the braking. I wasn't able to tell any difference there.

    Yes.... That's right. I was wrong. For all intents an purposes, the TNT performs as well as the HL. I will have no issues buying a TNT Turner........at all

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    Also form BIKE magazine:
    tnx BTWB. Link to thread found here.

    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  45. #45
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    I just recently was able to take a TNT rear for a test drive on my '03 spot. It was super easy to install. Just had to cut 1 cable housing a little longer. Everything else bolted right up with no fuss. I didn't even have to make any changes to the rear brake, it bolted right on and lined up perfectly.

    To everybody that says that, on paper, it is not possible for the TNT linkage to ride like a HL, I say - stop your friggin' pencil pushing and calculator punching and just ride one. What I found amazing (being a HL fan) is that I actually like the TNT better. Why?

    - It seemed like TNT rear was more compliant (softer) riding up hill over small bumps.
    - No difference detected in traction on climbs. The TNT hugged the ground just the same as the HL.
    - Not as much pedal feedback climbing in granny gear. I got more feedback in granny from the HL believe it or not.
    - No evidence of brake jack felt on bumpy descents. It just consumed the rocks and bumps on the descents without wanting to throw you over the bars, all the while holding the ground when hitting the rear brake hard.
    - No detectable difference from HL thus far. Maybe has a few advantages over the HL.

    Keep in mind that I kept the same RP3 settings and rode on the same trails I usually ride, trying to use the same gears as I usually do on the climbs. I rode with the explicit intent of finding the differences. The only difference I could find is that the TNT may actually be better than the HL. (YRMV) In the end, if I ever have to replace the HL rear, I would have no problem whatsoever with the TNT.
    MCM# 2007.1

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    Horst

    Below is a summary of my observations on TNT 5-spot side by side with my 2003 Horst 5-spot which I will call "Classic" below. In both cases I was able to swap a standard RP3, my RP3 Pushed and a Romic. I won't comment on the Romic in detail because it is obsolete, although it is interesting to note how both bikes performance suffers when going from the wonderful RP3/PUSH to the Romic (the standard RP3 is about a tie with the Romic).


    - Compliance:
    there is no difference between Horst and TNT. The compliance is completely determined by the shock setting. Only in its plushest setting (i.e. my PUSH/RP3 set on soft) compliance is ok. Otherwise the ride is fairly unresponsive to small bumps at slow speed for both bikes. DISADVANTAGE: TIE

    - Traction. The TNT performs similarly to the Horst when climbing not-technical sections (where by non-technical I define, roughly, a trail with less then 3" obstacles). However the Horst performs noticably better on more technical climbs. Put sizable obstacles on your path (anything where you have to lift the front wheel and hang on, 4-24") and my Horst with PUSH/RP3 finds traction wonderfully: it is the best feature of the my bike, I can go on obstacles that used to be impossible with ease. This is less so with the TNT, the deepest the rear goes in its travel (i.e. the highest the obstacle) the "skittish" the bike reacts. It just does not have the same "roll-over-anything" feel of the Classic. Note that here the best performance (for both bikes) is achieved with my RP3/PUSH in the soft (downhill) position. ADVANTAGE: CLASSIC.

    - Pedal feedbak: There is no pedal feedback climbing on my Horst nor I can detect any with the TNT. ADVANTAGE: TIE

    - Braking. The TNT performs similarly to the Horst on non-technical trails (defined as above) or rough terrain when you are just slowing down. Grab the brakes much more aggressively and the performance is again very similar on smooth ... on rough the advantage goes again to the classic: put sizable drops in you path, grab the brakes and the rear end does stiffen with the TNT as soon as you go deep into the travel. Mind you: this happen when you really push the situation, i.e. braking where you should not! but sometimes you have to ... ADVANTAGE (SMALL) CLASSIC

    - Square Bumps: This is a clinch the harmor of the Classic and the TNT does not do any better. Square bumps are badly handled by all the Horsts I owned and tried and the faux-bar TNT is perhaphs a bit worse. DISADVANTAGE: TIE (SMALL ADVANTAGE CLASSIC).

    - Handling: The bikes are basically identical when it comes to geometry and it comes as no surprise that the handling is not distinguishable between the two bikes. Most bikes on the market nowadays (for a given travel class, e.g. 5") have basically identical geometry (plus minus fractions of degrees that can easily be changed by setup) and work identically. ADVANTAGE: TIE.

    That's about it, my humble suggestion is certanly NOT to switch to TNT if you own a Classic, my Classic is a fine bike when equipped with a RP3/PUSH ... with some glitches: the faux-bar version just seem to add more glitches. It will eventually (in another 5-7 years) be put into retirement for a DW (peraphs, after much testing if at all possible ... for the beautiful and so promising IBIS? who knows what will be around). The TNT is a, small, step backward.
    Last edited by Davide; 05-07-2006 at 09:41 PM.

  47. #47
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    cactuscorn
    BZ Insert: Click This link To view the orig thread with pictures and comments... It's much more fun if you see the final test


    foaming at the mouth for TNT!



    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->
    I wanted this to be a interesting yet fair test so one of my ideas was to make it a 2 man event, swappin HL's for the TNT as the ride went on. i contracted squish for this segment of the test as he knows bikes, the trials we rode and can do his own quality work without distracting my own. this move also allowed us to try it out on a '04 burner for those of you who may end up with a TNT rear on yers one day for whatever reason. i dont think this has been done yet. me? i rode the '05 flux. both of us have alot of time on these bikes and have bolted on many a mod over the years so were pretty tuned into what they do. odus was on hand to make sure there were no forms of parts swappin other than the rear ends and the needed housing. everything else stayed the same except for my rollamajig but more on that later.

    the day started at 1pm at the stone park trailhead. more like 1:20 as squish had forgotten a important element of the test and had to return home to retrieve it. squish got 1st dibs on the TNT as i wanted to keep it on for a spell before i handed it over to him for his own long term testing. all the needed eqipment was put into place and the swap began needin only a slightly longer piece of housing to the rear der. the shifting needed zero adjusting besides cable tension and the brake was almost spot on. this has been said before but i thought it relevent to mention the trend continues, which speaks volumes for the q.c. of turner and its vendors.......

    Squish blows up. Odus blows up bigger.


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->our 1st lap went well without need for any brake or der work. the 3 of us started slowly (odus in rocks pace) down a gravel and dirt road to a secondary interence into the trail system that begins with a very fast and flowin series of desendin twisties with plenty of yumps. its been dry and the trail reflects it with a loose dusting of powdery soil over a fairly hard surface below. this made for some ducati style driftin and countersteerin through the tighter corners that required very hard breakin from warp speed. it took some gettin used to was both of our opinions.

    the 1st real comment on the TNT was it felt more solid and less flexy when it was pushed into action. one other thing squish noticed was a slightly soft rear float rl shock which just came back from a out of state loan and hadnt been dialed back into his tastes yet. 50 or so lbs later with a fox hp pump and a no bleed valve, we were back on the case. from there we bagan climbin to the top of the parks back side on twisty, rooted, wide 1 track takin small breaks for odus. it was gettin pretty hot under the tree canopy that runs 85% of the trail. a bit farther into the ride he commented on the TNT feelin more compliant on small bumps yet slightly softer when standing compared to the HL. he noticed no lack of or change in climbin behavior and we hit some grinders and steep ups with roots crossin the trail but nuthin id call tech.

    once on top it was weeeeeee weeeeeeeeeee weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee all the way home. that is if home was at the bottom of the park. it wasnt. the long down was filled with big rollin woops that he mostly rolls but at substancial speed. again he reported how solid the TNT felt on this run. i didnt see alot of him as i held back for a ever increasingly hot, tired and slowin odus but i know how he rides and he confirmed my thoughts on the matter before the sucky climb back to the swap station began. its about 1/2 mile of more loose dirt, some small rocks and bigger roots that rises, flatens slightly before goin back up again hard then repeats itself time and time again before the last huge pitch to the top. it was a hard effort and we were glad to be done with that climb.

    it was my turn to try the TNT, this time without the guidence and support of odus. he was fully cooked. i dont have any pics of my swap as squish chose to use his digi and he hasnt sent those pics yet. what i can show ya is all the nessesary equipment for a test like ours and how squish felt about his 1st ride on the TNT rear.

    my TNT experience was much like Squish's, very positive. we rode the same loop at roughly the same speed. i was more adapted to the loose conditions obviously so those 1st hard corners were less of a handfull, therefore i wont comment on the TNT's ablility to track better there. what i will say is on the other high speed corners i didnt have to slide through to keep my line, i felt a pretty dramatic diff in the stiffness and thats a big plus sign good buddy! it held with more authority and shot out with more control. same with the rooty bits. there was no diff in breakin quality as i hauled it down to managable speed from warp 3 on smooth trails. nuthin tech or rough enough here to comment on. early on i also noticed more rebound on the rp3 but didnt change it for this ride. i wanted to know how it felt so that the next time out i could tune it away if possible. it also felt more compliant on small stuff to me as well. but ever so slightly softer on harder efforts although i dont normaly stand on these trails. again, this may be a need to tune the damper to suit the new rear.

    when we hit the big down from the back side i didnt have to stop or wait for odus so i let er rip. i know this trail well and i had no dificulty goin fast, landing the biggest yumps and jumps. im talkin long, low, very fast air. some i tossed the bike into a corner off of or landed onto a banked corner makin for a inspierin and confidence inspierin ride. it bears mention that i forgot to change the rp3 from its firm setting to its mid positoin and raise the rlc from 85mm back to 110mm as i normally do on this run. even so, advantage - TNT.

    by the time we hit the horse hill climb back to the cars, i was gettin sore in the legs and had to stop a few times to ward off the cramps, but i rode hard enough to get a feel for this extended climb. there was no noticable reduction in efficancy or good behavior other than the fast rebound.

    my call: little to no noticable diff in climbing and breaking. any diff i felt was non ugly and posed zero threat to the performance of my flux but might be tuned out altogether with some psi, dials, time and miles. cornering and landings were noticably better on the TNT. for this reason id seriously consider gettin one if i had a job and some spare green. i dont.

    but this isnt realy what this test was about. read on kids!

    ready? ready?


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1>
    in a word, beer. you heard me, beer. its what makes us mountain bikers afterall and what test has any basis of fact without this key ingredient? about the same as the brakin effect of TNT vs horst link.

    the idea was inspired by a fantasticly funny test artical that bike mag ran in its early moments. use beer to evaluate the performance of full boing bikes vs hardtails on the dirt of santa cruz. i thought it ran about 10 years ago but i was wrong. it was more like 11 years ago. i thought it had been long forgotten but i was wrong. it was revisited last year in bikes 1oth aniversary edition according to squish, un beknowenst to me before just a few days ago when this test was well planned out. so fockin be it. i goin ahead with it anyway.

    we used 4 kiltlifter scottish amber ales from 4 peaks brewery in tempe, az. a brew worthy of a turner. each run we carried 1 bottle each. 1 on the TNT bike, 1 on the HL rig. after the 1st lap we used another left behind as a control to compare the foam in the sealed bottle against the bottles that had been ridden with. after measurin each bottle we opened and poured. the HL bottle was opened with a 4 peaks opener into a turner pint glass (the test item squish left behind. remember that part of the story?) and the TNT with a kona bottle opener into a kona glass then checked for foam, taste and character. we took care to pour in the same way after both rides.

    the results:

    in both tests the TNT bottle showed 3/4" of foam, 1/4" more foam than the HL bottle while still sealed makin one believe that the TNT beer would foam somethin silly once opened and poured. the 1st test proved this true but it may have had somethin to do with squish's need to pour straight down into the glass causin it to spill over the sides in big fashion. my style is the old proven way. tilt the glass and slowly pour down the side. no head of unreasonable tolerences on the HL pour.

    after the 2nd run we repeated the prossess, this time i had the kona glass, squish, the turner goblet. crazy as it sounds although the foam in the sealed bottles again showed 1/4" more in the TNT kiltlifter than the HL version, my pour was foam free thus negating any and all poor mouthed trash talk about TNT once and for skin, errrr... ever. no, its..... all! once and for all! nuff said.

    these pics show the HL flux ready for battle, the mounting of the kilt and the control beer next to the 1st HL brew.


    1st test results in digi pt 1


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->these show the HL beer on the left and the TNT beer on the right, squish opening, pouing and showin a full glass overflowin with TNT goodness.


    1st test results pt 2


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->these show my HL beer bein expertly opened, poured, full and then, cheers!



    2nd test results pt 1


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->here we see the beers after the lap, squish openin, pourin and admierin a full HL kiltlifter.
    <!-- / message --><!-- attachments -->

    2nd test results pt 2


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->and lastly i do up the TNT kilt and its off to the grassy bar!

    This concludes our beer test. more thoughts as the days go by. if anyone still cares that is.


    ...edit...
    I forgot to mention why i didnt reuse the rollamajig durrin the TNT phase of my test. i dropped the ball so to speak. ya know that little plastic ball that allows the unit to rotate on the der? i forgot all about it till i went to remount it discoverin i had dropped it in the thick grass then spent the next 30 min stompin it down into places yet know to man. squish is orderin up a new one for me. till then ill have to run a long piece of housing. this made no impact on the ride quality, just took some smooth out of the rear shifting is all. no big deal.


    <!-- / message --><!-- attachments -->
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 06-15-2006 at 06:40 PM.
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  48. #48
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    squish
    BZ Insert: Click author's name above for orig post and This link To view the orig thread with pictures and comments...

    Beer, Bikes, and Butts.......errr new rear ends


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->
    I will admit I was a little aprehensive about the new rear end at first. The Horst Link was one of the reason I bought the frame though it was way down on the bottom of the list. Like I've seen everyone who's ridden the new rear note before everything bolted up and didn't really need adjusting to speak of, brake lined up and the limits were pretty much spot on.

    First thing I noticed was a difference in rear end stiffness, the Burner carved before, I thought, it carves even better with that rear end on it. It also seamed to soak up the little trail noise a little better, but that may have been shock settings. I didn't notice any weird braking effects, the tires broke loose at about the same points I expected them to. I also have to note that the rear shock felt a little more controlled with this rear end, maybe it's just me, but I didn't notice any of the gooft rebound spikes I sometimes get.

    Once Cactus is done with the rear end end he's gonna hand it off to me for a while, and we'll see what happens from there.

    Oh and for reference the beer tasted just as good of the HL bike as it did off the TNT

    And for those curious bike set up is 04 Burner, w/ XR rockers and Float RL, most recently has a TALAS on the front but someone had a brain cramp when he rebuilt and is now waiting for an IFP adapter to get it back up and running DOH!!!! I'll also test it with the X rockers w/ Float RL and the Vanilla RC.

    And I'll try to get my pics up here soon.

    happy trails...

    squish
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  49. #49
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    Jerk_Chicken
    BZ insert: click link in author's name above to see orig thread with pictures and comments.

    First ride report


    <HR style="COLOR: #b7b7b7" SIZE=1><!-- / icon and title --><!-- message -->Well, we'll get to the color. "Ano olive". In darker lighting, it appears a metallic gold-green, I guess kind of like a uniform version of a tarnished brass. In good lighting, it's gold with barely a hint of green. Fantastic color and I owe the Turner guys a debt of gratitude for this. Thanks Greg and David!

    Next point of order is the jump from a Flux to an RFX. To be concise, I got on it and I realized right away it was my dream bike. When holding the frame or complete assembly, it feels very heavy compared to the Flux, but when I built it, I was absolutely floored when it felt and pedaled like something lighter. The DHX-C perhaps deserves a load of credit and those (including Blingzilla) who recommended me to it couldn't have been any more right. Despite the weight penalty, the ride and traction offered is fantastic. This is EXACTLY what I was looking for.

    What shocked me even more was taking it out onto the trails and seeing how efficient a climber this bike is. I was burnt out on riding for the last month, so coming back to something some five pounds heavier was a bit scary. Normally, I'm in "save myself until the end of the ride mode", so I don't go crazy and look to run one pace, no playing, no breaks for several hours. A few minutes into the ride, I realized that I was riding better than I previously did on the Flux, so I went pretty all-out. I don't know what it is about the RFX, but it's stable as hell and I saw the concern about the slack head angle was completely unfounded. I ran my All Mountain 1 in 150mm mode on tight singletrack and to be 100% honest, I didn't find myself reaching for the TAS to go into 130. Just amazing. Climbs weren't even bad. There's fantastic traction offered and it's smooooooth. Dare I say, it was easier to climb than with my Flux? I don't want to turn this into a supernatural observation, but perhaps the stars aligned right, I needed the break from riding, and was really motivated to enjoy this bike to its limit. Or perhaps it was just easier to climb. I never broke traction and the rear followed the trail features as I would have expected any Turner-Horst or Non Horst to. I was even looking for flaws with the 6" of travel and my riding style, but it was fantastic the way it was. I shall try 5" rockers and see how I like a more xc oriented head angle, along with shorter travel in the front.

    TNT- What's this? A simple pivot location change and weenies all over the world were fretting about it. I mean, I seriously looked for the mismatch with my riding and the long travel. Concisely, the non-horst rear end simply makes no difference whatsoever. The bike still rides like a Turner, it's still compliant under braking, still moves up and down, etc. I can't comment on stiffness, as I've gone from the lightweight rear to the heavy duty.
    Regardless, nothing more can be said than this bike rides like a Turner, handling is amazing.

    A point I would like to bring forth is that people spend too much time playing the numbers game. I viewed the geometry and weight of the RFX and thought it might be a mismatch for the heavy duty XC I planned on using it for. The Burner in part fell to this fate being relatively heavy and short on travel compared to the competition, but the numbers game doesn't tell anything about the quality of the ride. 68 degree head angle? Please, the bike handles switchbacks like a dream without pushing into turns. High eight pound range? Well, I do have mine equipped for heavy duty XC, regardless, all things being equal to the Flux except for the fork, this bike feels better, believe it or not. It seems to climb better. Counterintuitive? Yeah, only if you play the numbers game. TNT inferior? No doubt the numbers game of not having the HL weighed heavily for some. I think several dozen have publically declared it doesn't mean ****, including myself (not that I bought Turner for the HL in the first place). I feel so strongly about this that I will not be offering Turner to buy the lightweight HL rear end I will be sending them back in a few days.

    Some have suggested they would rather see a return of the XCE-style suspension just so they could have the "advantages" of the Horst Link. I spoke to David about this a few months ago and he told me he would never return to that style suspension. There are advantages in the newer, horizontal style rocker that outweighs the supposed advantages of the HL. I will agree. I was never a big HL fan. I was a fan of the Turner ride and simply, it's there, HL or not. I would rather have the proper rocker placement as opposed to having a pivot position that's mostly advertising and aesthetics.

    Turners are the sum of their parts and this is only a small contributor. Work was definitely put in to retain the classic Turner ride we all love. No doubts, it's still there and they are still in my eyes 50% great bike and 50% great people backing them.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  50. #50
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    Highline First Impressions and TNT Follow-up

    AndyN
    BZ insert: click link in author's name above to see orig thread with pictures and comments.

    So after a brief and disappointing relationship with a Specialized Demo 7/8 I am now the happy owner of a second Turner. In January I decided it was time to build up a big bike, I wanted something with approximately 7" front and rear that I could still pedal. There was much talk of the [Highline] back then but none available for purchase so I decided to try my hand at building up a 7" travel [Spechy Demo-8] with DHX Air in back and 66 up front. This was a total nightmare. In order to get a DHX Air on a [Spechy Demo-8] custom fabrication would be required as Speshy has a habit of using shocks that only fit their frames, and frames that only accommodate their shocks. Larry at mtnhigh was a great help as usual and did what he could to help me track something down. I rode the [Spechy Demo-8] for a few weeks in 7" front and 8" rear mode while we were searching and it was just okay. The wheelbase was incredibly long, my small measured almost 46", this made for good straight-line stability but nothing else in my experience. From the first ride the frame was creaking and there was shock reducer play, for a bike that expensive that's pretty lame. Cable routing was a nightmare, shock access was laughable (get out the needle nose pliers to adjust rebound), and the frame was really heavy. Oh yeah, interrupted seat tubes suck.

    After searching in vain for a way to get a DHX Air on the [Spechy Demo-8], and being annoyed by creaks and pops on every ride for a few weeks, I decided to jump the [Spechy Demo-8] ship and ordered a [Highline] from Larry.

    This should have been the end of my misery, but thanks to a shipping error by Fox the incorrect size DHX Air was sent to Larry. Larry being the great guy he is sent a DHX coil for me to use on the [Highline] while Fox got the correct shock sent out, something they said would only take a week or two so I just decided to wait for the Air and never bothered riding it with the coil. Fast forward two months of me staring at an almost finished Highline and the DHX Air finally arrives, and the bike is finished.

    It was worth the wait. Just like my 5 Spot [the Highline] fit me like a glove the first time I sat on it. Stiff as hell, ridiculously plush (much more so than the [Spechy Demo-8] was with a DHX coil in 8" mode), a good two pounds lighter than the [Spechy Demo-8], and not a creak or pop to be heard. I had a bit of difficulty setting up the front derailleur, removal of some suspension components was necessary, but aside from that the build went smoothly.

    I've only had two "shakedown" rides on [the Highline] so far so no drops over a few feet yet. The DHX Air seems to bottom pretty easily so more air will be added, although I am a bit concerned that Fox seems to have switched to a smaller canister per SS's thread and I may have missed out on mine.

    Anyways, thanks again to Larry for all the help and his usual screaming deals, and thanks to DT and company for yet another world-class ride.


    TNT follow-up thoughts
    Quote:
    <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=6 width="100%" border=0><TBODY><TR><TD class=alt2 style="BORDER-RIGHT: 1px inset; BORDER-TOP: 1px inset; BORDER-LEFT: 1px inset; BORDER-BOTTOM: 1px inset">Originally Posted by tscheezy
    Andy, I think you had a hard time coming to terms with the TNT rear on your trialbike (compared to the Horst). What made you decide to use that system on the big rig?



    </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>

    I did have a hard time coming to grips with the move to TNT, and I still believe that the Turner [Horst Link] Spot will outclimb the TNT Spot at the extremes of traction as was the case in my testing. I don't want to go off on a tangent here but a while back I was thinking about the test I did and wondered whether rear end stiffness could hinder traction on a climb like the one I used which is basically a big rut. Would a stiffer rear end be more likely to spin out as it walked up the side of the rut whereas a noodly rear might conform and keep the rear tire hooked up? I don't know, just a thought.

    If you recall during my test of [Horst Link] vs. TNT I gave the advantage to TNT in all other areas aside from climbing, and frankly after riding TNT on my Spot I just haven't been as happy with the [Horst Link] rear with regards to braking and cornering. I won't hesitate to buy a TNT Spot to replace my [Horst Link] Spot when the time comes.

    Anyways, the [Horst Link Spechy Demo-8] had it's chance. There was really nothing I liked about the bike aside from it's high speed straight-line stability. As has been said here before a Horst-link does not guarantee that the suspension will perform well.

    Besides all that the Turner quality was really missed.
    Last edited by Bikezilla; 07-27-2006 at 07:58 AM.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

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