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  1. #1
    hispanic mechanic
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    New Chromag Rootdown BA

    Swapped everything (except the stem) over from my Advocate Hayduke. I didn't have anything particular that I disliked about the Hayduke, but I decided that I had more fun and went faster on 29" than 27+. So I'd been riding the Hayduke with 29ers, and generally having a great time. Unfortunately, my buddy Jake runs a small boutique/mobile shop, and he signed on as a Chromag dealer after I mentioned how cool their frames were. And then, of course, he had to order a Rootdown frame. In blue. In my size.
    Alright, I think, I'll toss up a quick ad for the Hayduke on MTBR, just to see if anyone is interested. Sells almost immediately.
    Alright, so I build up the Rootdown, and it's really nicely made, fit and finish is great. I take it for a quick shakedown ride, and am really surprised by how well it handles!
    All the things I liked about my first gen Nimble 9, with better climbing due to the steeper seattube angle and longer reach.
    I haven't had a chance to get up to the mountains yet, but the rocky sections I've been able to ride have been stellar! I've clipped pedals a couple of times, just need to get used to a slightly lower BB.
    The fork is still only set to 130mm, but I'll report back after I get around to replacing the air shaft for 150mm of travel.

    Los

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  2. #2
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    Nice looking rig. Nice looking trail too.

  3. #3
    There's always next year.
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    I don't 'long' for hardtail frames much anymore, but Chromag's 29er frames have always been an exception. I want one. This didn't help!

  4. #4
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    Sweet rig! I'll be curious to hear how you like it after some time on it.

    I'm warming up to the "super slack HTA - steep STA" design on hardtails (as opposed to having both slacked out). Combined with a dropper and mid-travel fork, it can add up to a really versatile ride.
    Last edited by Smithhammer; 08-23-2017 at 12:03 PM.
    "The only way we can truly control the outcome of a ride is not going on it, which is a choice I'm unwilling to make." -K.B.

  5. #5
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    Super nice bike! I almost bought one of those frames from Jenson for $100.

    I said "almost."
    =sParty
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  6. #6
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    Man, that is one excellent looking frame, love the colour. Curious if you've still got any B+ wheels/tyres hanging around to see if they'll fit this frame?
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  7. #7
    hispanic mechanic
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Man, that is one excellent looking frame, love the colour. Curious if you've still got any B+ wheels/tyres hanging around to see if they'll fit this frame?
    I don't, but they fit. Up to 27.5"x3".
    I'm going to (eventually) try a 29"x2.6" in the back- looks like I have plenty of room!

    Los
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  8. #8
    hispanic mechanic
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    Super nice bike! I almost bought one of those frames from Jenson for $100.

    I said "almost."
    =sParty
    Yeah, I tried to get in on that screw up as well!
    Well worth full price, though.

    Los
    Whiskey is my yoga.

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  9. #9
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    New Chromag Rootdown BA-img_4430.jpgClick image for larger version. 

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ID:	1153971I've put about 3 rides on my new rootdown ba. It rips downhill
    I'm running 3.0 high rollers and no rub issues.

  10. #10
    hispanic mechanic
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xlr8n View Post
    Nice looking rig. Nice looking trail too.
    Thanks! I love this blue!
    We don't have a ton of tech here, but there's a couple.
    Quote Originally Posted by padrefan1982 View Post
    I don't 'long' for hardtail frames much anymore, but Chromag's 29er frames have always been an exception. I want one. This didn't help!
    Sorry, or maybe not... I have no regrets, but I kinda feel like the trails here are especially hardtail friendly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Smithhammer View Post
    Sweet rig! I'll be curious to hear how you like it after some time on it.

    I'm warming up to the "super slack HTA - steep STA" design on hardtails (as opposed to having both slacked out). Combined with a dropper and mid-travel fork, it can add up to a really versatile ride.
    130mm might be a little short, so I'm going to try 150. That being said, I totally agree with the versatility aspect, at least for me.

    Los
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  11. #11
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    Thanks for the info on the tyre fitment.

    Not sure if this is for the HA or just travel, but for me, I don't want a fork with that much travel on the front of a HT, means you've got as much as 6 degrees change in HTA compared to zero in the back, so your nice 66.5* HA turns into a nasty sharp 72.5* at max compression on the suer steep stuff Most I want in a HT is 120mm.

    Quote Originally Posted by sslos View Post
    130mm might be a little short, so I'm going to try 150. That being said, I totally agree with the versatility aspect, at least for me.

    Los
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  12. #12
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    I picked up a Rootdown ba frame last month and it is indeed BA! I got it for the interim waiting for an SC crash replacement. Now I'm in no hurry to resurrect the Hightower. This thing rips!

  13. #13
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    Loving mine!

    New Chromag Rootdown BA-img_0436.jpg

  14. #14
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    Riding mine with a 150mm and it's perfect! Stable front end height and ability to hit whatever I've come across.

  15. #15
    hispanic mechanic
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    Finally got around to installing a 150mm air shaft in the Fox 34. While I thought the Rootdown was fun before, it really came alive with the longer travel!
    I rode some fairly technical downhills this past weekend (Jug Mountain Ranch, for anyone familiar with SW Idaho...), with some decent chunk. Handled like a champ.
    Unlike most others, I opt to ride uphill instead of shuttling. I was wondering if the slacker HT angle and longer fork would negatively affect the climbing ability- it didn't. I will try some steep climbs this week, which will give me a little better info than this weekend, but the on the steep sections, I never felt like the front end was wandering any more than before.
    Having some trouble uploading pics, I'll try again later.

    Los
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  16. #16
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    Thanks for the update Sslos, now curious about your thoughts on something...... Do you really feel that you ride this bike as hard as the 150mm fork could/should be ridden, or would it not be a better thing to have it designed around a 120mm travel fork, just with the angles the 150mm gives?

    I ask, as I just can't seem to manage to absorb the hits on anything that I would consider pushing the limits of a 150mm travel fork, nor do I like the fact that with such a long fork the HTA can steepen by as much as 6 degrees, hence my question and thinking that a nice steel HT with the right angles designed around a 100-120mm travel fork would be more :appropriate" All I really would want from a suspension fork when riding rigid rear is to take some of the edge off, because no matter what, my knees and body still have to absorb the hit from the rear.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  17. #17
    hispanic mechanic
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Thanks for the update Sslos, now curious about your thoughts on something...... Do you really feel that you ride this bike as hard as the 150mm fork could/should be ridden, or would it not be a better thing to have it designed around a 120mm travel fork, just with the angles the 150mm gives?

    I ask, as I just can't seem to manage to absorb the hits on anything that I would consider pushing the limits of a 150mm travel fork, nor do I like the fact that with such a long fork the HTA can steepen by as much as 6 degrees, hence my question and thinking that a nice steel HT with the right angles designed around a 100-120mm travel fork would be more :appropriate" All I really would want from a suspension fork when riding rigid rear is to take some of the edge off, because no matter what, my knees and body still have to absorb the hit from the rear.
    Well, I'm certainly not the guy to push this configuration to the limit! For most of the riding I do around town, a 100-120mm fork would be plenty. Sometimes, like this past weekend, I'll drive up to the mountains and push it a little more. For example, on Saturday, I was the only person without at least 120mm of rear suspension, with a lot of 140-160mm bikes out there.
    An interesting thing about a hardtail with so much travel is that I actually find myself putting a lot more weight on the front and allowing the fork to work, and floating the rear tire a bit more. You'd be surprised at the rock sections I rode at speed doing this!
    Keep in mind, I rode rigid for many years, even spending about 5 years riding fixed off road in San Diego and south Texas, so I'm quite used to doing just the opposite.
    Hope this answers some of your questions,

    Los
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  18. #18
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    Fixed offroad! What were you thinking! Nice bike by the way.

  19. #19
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    I've ridden one of these bad ass hard tails with a 160 ribbon and 2.8 plus tires in snow shoe down hil park for several runs and I have to say its truly bad ass. And I love these kind of hard tails. So much fun and versatilety


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  20. #20
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    There is nothing better than a good HT AM 29er in my book. Beautiful.

  21. #21
    hispanic mechanic
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    Let's try pics through Tapatalk...

    Los
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  22. #22
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    Honestly, a good steel HT is so much fun, but I can't handle the excessive head angle changes with that much travel. Still though, looking forward to setting up one with a 120mm fork, may try 140mm, but I mainly go that long right now to get the angles, so once I get a frame with the angles I want won't really need to. Not sure how old/young you guys are or how your knees and back are, but for me with some not so great knees, absorbing any big hits without sus, doesn't happen well

    Quote Originally Posted by Raleighguy29 View Post
    I've ridden one of these bad ass hard tails with a 160 ribbon and 2.8 plus tires in snow shoe down hil park for several runs and I have to say its truly bad ass. And I love these kind of hard tails. So much fun and versatilety
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  23. #23
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    I'm 5'9.5" and considering a M/L Rootdown. Any thought on fit? I am concerned about the high stack for short/medium riders.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  24. #24
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    Stack is listed as the same for M, M/L, L and XL.
    I'm about 175cm on an OG Surface M. No issues with stack height I was running a spacer 10 or 15mm spacers below the stem as well.

  25. #25
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    Travis, I am 6' and am on a M/L. I thought it would be a bit small but it isn't. I actually compared dimensions and geometry side by side and it is almost exactly the same as a large hightower with a much shorter chainstay.
    Hope this helps

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rdwallacer View Post
    Travis, I am 6' and am on a M/L. I thought it would be a bit small but it isn't. I actually compared dimensions and geometry side by side and it is almost exactly the same as a large hightower with a much shorter chainstay.
    Hope this helps
    What length of stem, how many spacers, and rise/sweep/length of bar?
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    What length of stem, how many spacers, and rise/sweep/length of bar?
    45mm stem, 2- 5mm spacers,780 width/25 rise/5up-8back. Fireeye stem fubars osx

  28. #28
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    Thanks.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Honestly, a good steel HT is so much fun, but I can't handle the excessive head angle changes with that much travel. Still though, looking forward to setting up one with a 120mm fork, may try 140mm, but I mainly go that long right now to get the angles, so once I get a frame with the angles I want won't really need to. Not sure how old/young you guys are or how your knees and back are, but for me with some not so great knees, absorbing any big hits without sus, doesn't happen well
    I don't think that head angle change is an issue in practice. You get that with full suspension too when you roll off something and the front end sucks up the lack of transition or bomb hole. To me it's more about writing cheques out front that the back end can't cash. I don't care for the steep seat angle myself. I have no issues climbing steep pitches here in Whistler with a 73 angle bike and an offset seatpost. But I have long femurs. Long, low, slack? I'm all over that like a fat kid on a cookie crumb but not the steep seat angle.

  30. #30
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    I think that most people gel with the steep STA, but certainly not all. I love em with my shorter legs, and just can't ride a slacker STA or a setback post. Found this out by trial and error way back. I like this feature of the Rootdown, and am leaning toward the M/L that is close to my old M Mondraker Vantage. Rootdown has less reach/TT, but higher stack, so they might be pretty close. Vantage was a stiff frame and didn't have room for 2.5 or bigger tires needed to smooth it out.

    Is anyone using the stock CHROMAG PHASE30 Rims with CHROMAG MAGNA Hubs 27.5+ or 29 wheels? How are they, and who makes the hubs?
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  31. #31
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    We met a guy on an old model Rootdown yesterday, who raved about it. His friend has a new one, and apparently he is an absolute madman on it.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    We met a guy on an old model Rootdown yesterday, who raved about it. His friend has a new one, and apparently he is an absolute madman on it.
    I had a first gen rootdown and it was my first taste of long travel hard tails ever since then I keep at least one in house. Ive ridden the ba in snow shoe with plus tires and **** it was so bad ass


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  33. #33
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    Any feedback on the stock wheels, especially the Magna hubs?

    Is the dual position Lyrik necessary for steep climbing? I'm 5'9.5" and would get a M/L.

    Thanks.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jab70 View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	1153971Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	1153971I've put about 3 rides on my new rootdown ba. It rips downhill
    I'm running 3.0 high rollers and no rub issues.
    Curious how you are liking the 3.0 high rollers. Also curious if anyone else is running 3.0 tires on the BA model. I kinda figure that if I am gonna go 27.5+, I going no smaller than 3.0 tires.
    Thx

  35. #35
    hispanic mechanic
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    A couple of pics from the last month. Still really enjoying the hell outta this thing!
    Ill be off of it for a while- just had my (hopefully) last surgery after being hit by a car a little over a year ago, and the snow has already started falling in the upper foothills.
    For the spring, Im considering building some wider rims than my WTB i25 KOMs, and maybe try some 2.6 tires.

    Los
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  36. #36
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    New Chromag Rootdown BA-rootdown.jpgI just finished building up an older version of the Rootdown after deciding that my old trail bike had a better value if i used the parts on a hardtail vs selling it. Threw in a -1 degree angle set and running a 150mm pike up front. 2 rides in, it's awesome. Coming off a 140/160 trail bike, it's amazing the change in efficiency on this thing, and it shreds just as hard.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    Any feedback on the stock wheels, especially the Magna hubs?

    Is the dual position Lyrik necessary for steep climbing? I'm 5'9.5" and would get a M/L.

    Thanks.
    I had a 34 TALAS RLC on my OG Surface. Hardly ever used the low setting (only times I recall were on roadways and the WORCA Funduro event.) Switched to a 36 FLOAT RC2 @140/150 travel and haven't had any issues with climbing besides the engine driving the bike.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rdwallacer View Post
    Travis, I am 6' and am on a M/L. I thought it would be a bit small but it isn't. I actually compared dimensions and geometry side by side and it is almost exactly the same as a large hightower with a much shorter chainstay.
    Hope this helps
    I tried a large Hightower, and the fit was very good. Looks like the Rootdown may have a home.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    I tried a large Hightower, and the fit was very good. Looks like the Rootdown may have a home.
    It's a genuine AM hardtail, I'm sure you'll dig it.

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    I've been considering the primer for a while now. Though I REALLY struggle with the decision.

    Intention for my bike: daily rider, exercise oriented with trails mixed in here and there.
    (Note: I have the new rocky mountain altitude and love it, just don't want to ride it in winter, hard on seals etc.)

    Choice, Stumpjumper pro (2017) 6fattie. Full suspension, price is amazing and the spec is similar in many ways. eagle 01 etc.

    OR

    Chromag Primer Eagle X01 build. The price is slightly more but less suspension issues to worry about in the cold (rear anyway). My concern here is, I'm getting older and I can't try first. I grew up on hard tail and it was fine, but how smooth is it truly? How much does the steel really make a difference? AND what size would I go with?! normally a medium guy but this M/L bit throws me for a lil loop.

    Why a new bike? 27.5+ calls to me, hoping like heck to replace my fatbike with it.
    2018 RM Altitude Carbon 90
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  41. #41
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    What is your height and inseam. I'm 5'9.5" and would go M/L.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    What is your height and inseam. I'm 5'9.5" and would go M/L.

    I would say same height as you and my inseam on my pants is a 30" The geometry of the medium is similar the the medium I ride now... but that of course isn't always the story. I always find numbers can be slightly misleading for me once I hop on.
    2018 RM Altitude Carbon 90
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  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by nilbert View Post
    I've been considering the primer for a while now. Though I REALLY struggle with the decision.

    Intention for my bike: daily rider, exercise oriented with trails mixed in here and there.
    (Note: I have the new rocky mountain altitude and love it, just don't want to ride it in winter, hard on seals etc.)

    Choice, Stumpjumper pro (2017) 6fattie. Full suspension, price is amazing and the spec is similar in many ways. eagle 01 etc.

    OR

    Chromag Primer Eagle X01 build. The price is slightly more but less suspension issues to worry about in the cold (rear anyway). My concern here is, I'm getting older and I can't try first. I grew up on hard tail and it was fine, but how smooth is it truly? How much does the steel really make a difference? AND what size would I go with?! normally a medium guy but this M/L bit throws me for a lil loop.

    Why a new bike? 27.5+ calls to me, hoping like heck to replace my fatbike with it.
    I am 48 and have many an old injury and have shied away from hardtails for this reason. I broke two frames last year and budget forced me to buy the chromag frame for the interim. The steel is nice! I decided to wait and build a whole new bike rather than putting my parts back on a f/s frame. I can ride anything on this bike and enjoy the hell out of it. I can't advise you directly on size, but the M/L is a long bike in the front triangle. I was hesitant thinking it would be too small for me at 6', but It isn't. Letting friends my size ride it they feel it is long. I love it! It feels perfect for me. One way I've heard to check is to measure crank center to stem / handlebar center and compare to what you are comfortable on.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    What is your height and inseam. I'm 5'9.5" and would go M/L.
    I'm barely 5'10 and have a M Rootdown BA. I buy 30 inseam pants. I also thought the ML was the way to go based on owning an ML Aperture, but the ML Rootdown BA I tried gave me zero standover, to the point where I had to go on my tip toes to give the boys room to breathe.

    My M is set up with a 140mm Pike, 125mm Transfer post, 60mm zero rise stem, and 785 Atlas flat bar.

    It would be cool to run a shorter stem and be down with the trends, but for me the ML was simply too big.

    Either way, it's a great frame. It just sucks being between sizes. I would have ordered an ML but was lucky enough to swing a leg over an ML at a shop before spending cash.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flats View Post
    I'm barely 5'10 and have a M Rootdown BA. I buy 30 inseam pants. I also thought the ML was the way to go based on owning an ML Aperture, but the ML Rootdown BA I tried gave me zero standover, to the point where I had to go on my tip toes to give the boys room to breathe.

    My M is set up with a 140mm Pike, 125mm Transfer post, 60mm zero rise stem, and 785 Atlas flat bar.

    It would be cool to run a shorter stem and be down with the trends, but for me the ML was simply too big.

    Either way, it's a great frame. It just sucks being between sizes. I would have ordered an ML but was lucky enough to swing a leg over an ML at a shop before spending cash.
    That's what I would expect. Being 6' tall with a 32" inseam, the M/L is just right for me. I couldn't go bigger or smaller honestly.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rdwallacer View Post
    That's what I would expect. Being 6' tall with a 32" inseam, the M/L is just right for me. I couldn't go bigger or smaller honestly.
    I'll also mention that there's maybe 1/2 an inch between the collar on my Transfer post and the top of the seat tube. With the 140mm fork, flat bar and slammed stem, my bar sits about an inch higher than my saddle.

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by sslos View Post
    For the spring, Im considering building some wider rims than my WTB i25 KOMs, and maybe try some 2.6 tires.

    Los
    Resurrecting an old thread as I'm looking at a Rootdown frame - in addition to the RSD Middle Child.

    Curious if OP got a chance to try a 2.6 tire on the Rootdown. I've been riding 29x2.6 Rekons front and rear and really like the setup so that's a requirement for a new frame.

    Thanks.

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    Does this bike exist as factory builds in the US? I can't seem to find one anywhere online.

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    Quote Originally Posted by avc8130 View Post
    Does this bike exist as factory builds in the US? I can't seem to find one anywhere online.

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    Mister Lost in Bellingham is selling them. I know they have ads on the Pinkie site.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by avc8130 View Post
    Does this bike exist as factory builds in the US? I can't seem to find one anywhere online.

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    They sell direct. Call Chromag.

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    30% discount due to exchange rate now!

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    Quote Originally Posted by PUNKY View Post
    30% discount due to exchange rate now!
    I thought they had the prices in USD on their site?

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  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by SCTerp View Post
    Resurrecting an old thread as I'm looking at a Rootdown frame - in addition to the RSD Middle Child.

    Curious if OP got a chance to try a 2.6 tire on the Rootdown. I've been riding 29x2.6 Rekons front and rear and really like the setup so that's a requirement for a new frame.

    Thanks.
    I have 2.6 Vee tires, with plenty of room on 30mm rims

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    I've been inside too long.

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by avc8130 View Post
    I thought they had the prices in USD on their site?

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    Looks like it.
    Visit them in Whistler for the exchange discount then.

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