Hardtail vs. Full Suspension - XC angle...- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1

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    Hardtail vs. Full Suspension - XC angle...

    Looking to get more into XC racing in the south-east United States. I have a Jamis XLT 2.0 2004 for my trail/fun bike. I am really happy with Jamis and can get a good deal on one of their steel hardtails, the Dakota XC or Dragon. Or I could go with their Dakar Expert or Pro for a full suspension XC bike. On the other hand, for a little more money, I could get a Racer-X.

    The first question is, I want to race Sport XC, should I run full suspension? I really like the way the full suspension really grabs the trail and also lets you crank downhill if you need to instead of just chattering while you hold on for dear life (on a really bumpy trail). On the other hand, hardtail is less weight and somewhat better climber on non-technical stuff.

    Next question...Jamis dropped the horst link on their Dakar series but all the XC bikes have pro-pedal shocks and I am really happy with my Manitou SPV rear shock on the XLT. The bikes are nice but if I am going to get full suspension, should I wait for the Racer-X or go for on of the Dakars? I can get a pretty good deal on the Dakars where on the Racer-X I am probably just paying normal price.....Let me know what you guys think. Thanks for the help.

    Greyeye

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greyeye
    Looking to get more into XC racing in the south-east United States. I have a Jamis XLT 2.0 2004 for my trail/fun bike. I am really happy with Jamis and can get a good deal on one of their steel hardtails, the Dakota XC or Dragon. Or I could go with their Dakar Expert or Pro for a full suspension XC bike. On the other hand, for a little more money, I could get a Racer-X.

    The first question is, I want to race Sport XC, should I run full suspension? I really like the way the full suspension really grabs the trail and also lets you crank downhill if you need to instead of just chattering while you hold on for dear life (on a really bumpy trail). On the other hand, hardtail is less weight and somewhat better climber on non-technical stuff.

    Next question...Jamis dropped the horst link on their Dakar series but all the XC bikes have pro-pedal shocks and I am really happy with my Manitou SPV rear shock on the XLT. The bikes are nice but if I am going to get full suspension, should I wait for the Racer-X or go for on of the Dakars? I can get a pretty good deal on the Dakars where on the Racer-X I am probably just paying normal price.....Let me know what you guys think. Thanks for the help.

    Greyeye
    Get the Racer X. One of the efficient full suspensions that mimics a hardtail except more comfortable.
    ____________
    it's not hard to meet expenses, they're everywhere..

  3. #3

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    The Answer

    I will start off by telling you that the racer x is supposed to be sweet, I have never ridden it but I have about 3 friends that ride them. The love them, but and this is important.... they don't race. I am a racer from Utah, I know my stuff, because utahns are some of the faster riders around. I rode a klein attitude race aluminum for a little while and sold it and then bought a Ellsworth Truth. The Ellsworth is sweet, I loved it but it wasn't light enough nor fast enough. Then I saw the light. The company is Independent fabrication, you may have heard of them, there the best. A custom steel and Ti manufacturer. I opt for the Ti, but it will cost you, Steel is sweet. I will promise you that you will never ride a bike like it. Never settle for an aluminum hardtail, they suck and will never be good, because aluminum is a horrible metal for a bike, at least as hardtails are concerned. Look into them. The best racers I know ride hardtails, they are more effecient and a whole lot better in a sprint finish. Choose wisely.

  4. #4

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    Wrestling with the advantages of FS though..

    What about all the increased traction from FS keeping the rear tire in contact with the ground? And the lesser beating that FS gives your body? I would rather buy a hardtail because I can get more for the money...However, I have just gone to FS in the last year (allthough I was not racing hardtail, just casual riding) and know that it does a lot less beating.....Thanks for the tips...Let me know what you think about what I said....I know they climb better.

    Greyeye

  5. #5
    Trail rider and racer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greyeye
    What about all the increased traction from FS keeping the rear tire in contact with the ground? And the lesser beating that FS gives your body? I would rather buy a hardtail because I can get more for the money...However, I have just gone to FS in the last year (allthough I was not racing hardtail, just casual riding) and know that it does a lot less beating.....Thanks for the tips...Let me know what you think about what I said....I know they climb better.

    Greyeye
    I guess it depends on your preferences. In races how much do you take a beating anyhow? A race for me is 8/12/24hrs of riding but when your doing short stuff I think the beneficial ride would be a hardtail, because in short course racing your main concern is not comfort but acceleration and speed.

    But if your racing sport, just having some fun and not to worried about getting on the podium or not then I think your dual suspension will be fine.
    Trev!

  6. #6
    www.derbyrims.com
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    Agree, FS for Sport class & trail riding

    Quote Originally Posted by Trevor!
    I guess it depends on your preferences. In races how much do you take a beating anyhow? A race for me is 8/12/24hrs of riding but when your doing short stuff I think the beneficial ride would be a hardtail, because in short course racing your main concern is not comfort but acceleration and speed.

    But if your racing sport, just having some fun and not to worried about getting on the podium or not then I think your dual suspension will be fine.
    For Expert/Pro you'd need a hardtail and a crazy light shorter travel fully such as the RacerX with platform shock and choose the bike depending on the traction.

    A friend rides Sport class and was on the podium every time on a near 30 pound 5 or 6 inch travel Joker. The Sport competition isn't so close as Expert where the bike efficiency makes a bigger difference.

    - ray

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trevor!
    I guess it depends on your preferences. In races how much do you take a beating anyhow? A race for me is 8/12/24hrs of riding but when your doing short stuff I think the beneficial ride would be a hardtail, because in short course racing your main concern is not comfort but acceleration and speed.

    But if your racing sport, just having some fun and not to worried about getting on the podium or not then I think your dual suspension will be fine.
    Maybe, but why would anyone want to race for fun, I don't believe in racing for fun, you may pay the fee and ride in the race for fun, but if thats the case, your not racing, your just wasting time. 8 and 12 hour races, what? why would you race those a 24 hour race, sure, I be rippin up 24 hours of moab this year but an 8 or 12 who does those, they don't even exist here. and in a 24 hour race, you have a team. I have completely converted to the hardtail. the full suspension is just to heavy and two bouncy, and in order to make them light you have to use a noodle fork like a sid that isn't worth a crap anyway.

  8. #8
    gray hair in my shammy
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    Pull Lease............!!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab21
    Maybe, but why would anyone want to race for fun, I don't believe in racing for fun, you may pay the fee and ride in the race for fun, but if thats the case, your not racing, your just wasting time. 8 and 12 hour races, what? why would you race those a 24 hour race, sure, I be rippin up 24 hours of moab this year but an 8 or 12 who does those, they don't even exist here. and in a 24 hour race, you have a team. I have completely converted to the hardtail. the full suspension is just to heavy and two bouncy, and in order to make them light you have to use a noodle fork like a sid that isn't worth a crap anyway.
    Greyeye,
    My advice would be to get a nice light FS. Its more versatile, and you can get FS racers in the 24lb range. My NRS is right at 24 with discs. An Aluminum HT does have a harsher ride IMHO. Its for that reason that I built up a TI HT for my single speed. Good full suspension designs, like your Dakar, Fuel, Racer X etc are efficient climbers, so I don't think you'll lose much there, and the greater control decending on a FS vs a HT is hard to overlook. Unless you race professionally, then fun has got to be part of the equation.

    Happy Trails
    "Veni, vedi, pulsus" "I came, I saw, I pushed"

  9. #9
    KgB
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    I hope you get paid

    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab21
    The love them, but and this is important.... they don't race. I am a racer from Utah, I know my stuff, because utahns are some of the faster riders around. .
    To talk sh!t like that!
    funniest I have read in a long time.
    So are you Pro or just another jackass?
    I've been inside too long.

  10. #10
    KgB
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    a bike is only going to get you so far

    the rest is up to you.
    you can't beat a good hartail IMHO,but it's good to have choices.
    I've been inside too long.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by KgB
    To talk sh!t like that!
    funniest I have read in a long time.
    So are you Pro or just another jackass?
    Somewhere in between, but probably more on the jackass side. But heck without guys like me, these forums would be boring. Contraversy is a good thing. Hopefully you'll agree with that. If not, atleast we both like hardtails.

  12. #12

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    Thanks for all the advice....

    I think that I will probably get a Jamis Dragon and go the hardtail route since I already have a somewhat raceable FS. A number of the local XC courses are not true XC in the sense that they are more all-mountain. Having a really nice hardtail will let me see how well I can do on the rest of the courses. Maybe next year I will grab a FS XC bike....Thanks again for all the advice and continue the controversy if you'all want.....Makes for informative and humorous reading *grin*....

    Greyeye

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