just how bad is Kona?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    just how bad is Kona?

    Well, i took my M1 to mammoth this weekend and pretty much **** my pants because it was so much fun (clearing every jump on twilight, railing the steep rockyness on Velocity). The only thing i noticed is that its kinda a pain in my ass to jump. (im 6'1 and its a 19" frame). its also really hard to move around in the air.

    Now, when im going to go riding some gnarly steep rocky stuff i wouldn't dream of riding anything other than my m1, but when it comes to freerideerish stuff, my m1 seems like a bit much.

    So what would you say about a 15-17" 2009 Kona Stinky? i know konas are crap, blahblahblah... i got a killer deal on a full build (think $500ish) so how would it work? just something for goofing off on jumps and drops, fun days at northstar on livewire and the jump park. For Mammoth i'd stick to my m1 fo sho, but a stinky could handle boondocks and flameout and stix couldn't it?

    what really got my mind thinking about this is after twilight zone. i was clearing every jump and trying to throw some pathetic whips on there. It got me thinking, "What the next step up?" the answer was the large jump line at northstar. i realize the difference in jump type, steepness, and such. I also realize my m1 is not the tool for the job. My porter is, but what heppens when i am going with 3 buds, and can barely fit all 4 of our bikes in my truck? i will want to do boondocks, but hit the jump park too.

    now, im not saying i want a magical bike that will pedal like a world champs XC bike, jump like semenuks remedy, and downhill like a Karpiel Armageddon. all im saying is i want a bike that will handle FR better than my m1, and still let me DH better than my porter. I will throw an airshock on there and pump the psi up high, or get a heavy spring for my shock.

    the small frame will help too...

    sorry for the longness of my writings... enjoy these cute puppy pictures as a reward of your hard work...

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  2. #2
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    LOl, cute puppies indeed.

    Konas are not crap. Just know what you are buying. I would say they are the sturdiest, best bang for the buck frame out there (used, of course). A Stinky would be a great park bike for someone on a budget (who isn't these days), and fun to jump!

    (btw I do not own one, but that is the reputation I hear from folks)
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  3. #3
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    15"-17" bike and your 6'1"? I know it's tempting to get a smaller bike for maneuverability when jumping but that's going a little far IMO.
    JRA

  4. #4
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    Oh, nothing wrong with Kona either
    JRA

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by eabos View Post
    15"-17" bike and your 6'1"? I know it's tempting to get a smaller bike for maneuverability when jumping but that's going a little far IMO.
    lolz i own an 15" porter frame, and use a 17" compulsion for AM... i like it that way... plus the biggest size stinky offered in 09 was 17"... i'd be able to test size out before i buy it.

  6. #6
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    Curious to where you've been hearing that Konas are "crap"?

    Kona in my opinion is one of the "bang for your buck" brands out there.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by peacob View Post
    Curious to where you've been hearing that Konas are "crap"?

    Kona in my opinion is one of the "bang for your buck" brands out there.
    I honestly have never ridden a kona, but would really like to. It seems to be known, or at least portrayed on the internet that konas are unreliable, snap easily, and have a bad suspension design. i cannot comment on the truth of these, which is why i'm asking the question.

  8. #8
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    I have a 07 Kona Unit, rigid single speed... Made of dedacciai's SAT 14.5 tubing, which is a very good tubeset. Love the bike, great feel to it, and cant imagine anything breaking on the frame.

  9. #9
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    They are know to snap because there are just a lot of them. The suspension is just simple that's it with some brake jack but then again why are you using the brakes.

    My Stinky6 has been pretty well beaten in the past year. I've snapped derailleurs, bent my rims multiple times, busted brakes (still not sure how), ect...but the frame is going just fine and only has some cosmetic damage. Dinged up paint and a few small dents from rocks.

    They are only crap when people put/do things it wasn't designed for, like casing jumps and dropping to flat.

  10. #10
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    Its sad that some bike companies still use the seatpost size as the size of the bike. Its even more sad that people still strictly follow that number and that number alone when considering buying a bike.

    Most FR and DH bikes will have a shorter seat tube. You need to look at the effective top tube length or even better the Reach and Stack.

    As for the OP's question, I hate to say it but the kona would quite possible be better on the DH than the M1 as well. The M1 has old geometry whereas the kona will have more modern Geo. There are plenty of local people who race DH on Kona's and do quite well.

    I do think you should stop buying these really cheap crappy bikes and buy 2 nicer bikes though. It seems like your getting to the level of riding where you could really benefit from a nicer bike. Something like a Bottlerocket and a DH bike would cover all the things you do quite nicely and help you progress a lot faster.

  11. #11
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    Kona's are some of the most solid bikes I've ridden. I beat my Stinky Primo for over 4 years before selling it to a friend who gave a few more years of lovin. Not the most sophisticated suspension design but it still works quite well. The only complaint I had was the standover. Just couldn't get the seat low enough for really nasty, steep stuff (compared to the DHR I also had at the time...).
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by climbingbubba View Post
    I do think you should stop buying these really cheap crappy bikes and buy 2 nicer bikes though. It seems like your getting to the level of riding where you could really benefit from a nicer bike. Something like a Bottlerocket and a DH bike would cover all the things you do quite nicely and help you progress a lot faster.
    The m1 is old, but is in no way a cheap bike.

    haro porters arent cheap bikes either... $3400 for top of the line

    $2600 for standard parts...

    sorry im a highschooler working at a local pool as a lifeguard, who still has to pay for college... i cant afford an m9 and a bottle rocket. i'd love to, but just cant. thats why i make do with good deals on decent bikes..

    my parents bought me my m1 as my 16th birthday present. i cant really sell it or they will get upset...

    im planning on upgrading my DH bike before next season though. not sure what, but over winter i should be able to build up enough for a good frame.

  13. #13
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    I would reckon you are a newbie if you are saying they are crap . Kona's, are kick ass frame's....

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by miguel View Post
    I would reckon you are a newbie if you are saying they are crap . Kona's, are kick ass frame's....
    lol didureadbro?

  15. #15
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    Yes I did read , you say "I know kona's are crap "..lol serious ,they are freaking great frame's..

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by miguel View Post
    Yes I did read , you say "I know kona's are crap "..lol serious ,they are freaking great frame's..
    Thanks for taking what I said out of context. I was simply trying to convey the point that it appears to me that a large amount of people say that Konas are crap. If you would then read farther I explain this point exactly.

    Then I also say that I have never ridden a kona, and therefore cannot offer any opinion as to how good/bad konas are. Then I say that I would love to ride a kona.

    You read one sentence, try reading everything, comprehending it, then come back and accuse me oh hating on kona. If I was bashing kona I wouldn't be asking people if I should buy one, and I certainly wouldn't post puppy pictures...

    So from this thread I'm gathering that the opinions of konas being bad are rubbish, and now I will definately try to go test ride the stinky I'm looking at.

    Also, I'm at the skill level where I hold myself back more than any decent DH/FR bike will. I've bottomed my m1 once, casing a 20 footer. I think a kona won't hold me back.

  17. #17
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    A complete Stinky for $500. Maybe I've lived in Sweden for too long, but, are you buying some clapped out rental bike or something?

  18. #18
    old school...
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    Kona Stinky and DOPE floating brake = good freeride & park bike
    Last edited by miqu; 09-07-2011 at 12:30 AM.

  19. #19
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    just ignore the haters !!!!!

    I beat the crap out of my 06 Stinky for ALONG time(big drops too every weekend) and it still was going strong this year when I sold it....

    great value for the money no doubt

    They are good freeride bikes.....

    plus if it does ever break, for what you have invested it's not very painful..

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by _rich_ View Post

    plus if it does ever break, for what you have invested it's not very painful..
    That's what I was thinking!

    And mrbigisbudgood, it is a rental but it was used 1 year at a place called kirkwood, which is very close to northstar, and lacks much DH. So chances are it was used once or twice, probably for all mountain/enduro. The place also rents stabs, so if someone were to DH, they'd rent a stab.

    Kirkwood isnt popular at all, especially for DH. I think buying one of their rentals is safe, but I'm going to go look at them just to make sure anyway. Plus for 500 ucant beat it.

  21. #21
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    The Stinky was one of the original freeride bikes. One of the "OG"s if you will. There is nothing fancy about them, but IMO the four bar is a great design for freeride and downhill, especially when paired with a floating brake. They are tough and handle well.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim311 View Post
    The Stinky was one of the original freeride bikes. One of the "OG"s if you will. There is nothing fancy about them, but IMO the four bar is a great design for freeride and downhill, especially when paired with a floating brake. They are tough and handle well.
    This dude said it right.
    People wait for me on the way up. I wait for them on the way down.

  23. #23
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    I had an 06 that i thought was just amazing. It was not stock in any way and it did everything i wanted it to...since then I've owned very expensive bikes that are supposed to be so much better. Last year i picked up an 07 with a dhx 5.0 coil, and went about trying to recreate a similar but updated build. first ride i absolutely hated it.

    so...$500 is a stellar price, but yes probably clapped out. You'll probably love it because you are using an outdated bike. I would get it if i were you and go about getting new bearings and hardware and start updating it as much as you feel you need. I personally could never ride a kona again. The suspension makes the bike just feels awful, sluggish, and weird to me

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by miguel View Post
    Yes I did read , you say "I know kona's are crap "..lol serious ,they are freaking great frame's..
    He was paraphrasing what people spout out of their cake wholes all the time. Way to take things out of context jerk.
    "Solution to two of the world's problems: Feed the homeless to the hungry."

  25. #25
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    as previous owner of a stab supreme and current owner of a dawg. i find that konas tend to have very short cockpit lengths. i feel pretty cramped on them and i'm considerably shorter than you are. just food for thought....


  26. #26
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    2 things

    First off the M-1 was the bike everyone wanted and it has FSR suspension...way better then konas faux bar....you are trading down getting a kona

    I rode a 20 inch stinky and it felt great and I am a little over 6 foot. so get the bigger one

    but really ?? Learn to set your bike to jump more and continue using the M-1 at NorthStar
    the trick is ENJOYING YOUR LIFE EACH DAY, don't waste them away wishing for better days

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by SHIVER ME TIMBERS View Post
    2 things

    First off the M-1 was the bike everyone wanted and it has FSR suspension...way better then konas faux bar....you are trading down getting a kona

    I rode a 20 inch stinky and it felt great and I am a little over 6 foot. so get the bigger one

    but really ?? Learn to set your bike to jump more and continue using the M-1 at NorthStar
    nah i love the m1, but craig at avalanche set up the shock for rocks and roots, so its really smooth on the DH, but jumps a little funny. plus if i wanna hit the large jump line it would be hard with 9.5" travel anyway.

  28. #28
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    I thought my V10 felt great on the jump trail at Northstar. If you build a DH bike under 38lbs and adjust the suspension differently than for a rough trail they jump and style just fine. Add a few clicks of compression and preload at each end and evaluate if the rebound is too slow. If you want to do well on modern race courses you gotta learn to jump the DH bike anyway.
    I used to own a medium Bullit for jumping that felt great on steep, short BMX style jumps but was much less confidence inspiring on long, fast jumps and drops.
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  29. #29
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    I used to own a Kona and have no complaints about it. I have a friend on a Stab Garbanzo and he loves it. I also used to own the M1 and think that it is a great dh bike with current components. I'd say just tune the M1 for more of an FR application but Kona's a great brand.
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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moosey View Post
    nah i love the m1, but craig at avalanche set up the shock for rocks and roots, so its really smooth on the DH, but jumps a little funny. plus if i wanna hit the large jump line it would be hard with 9.5" travel anyway.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lelandjt View Post
    I thought my V10 felt great on the jump trail at Northstar. If you build a DH bike under 38lbs and adjust the suspension differently than for a rough trail they jump and style just fine. Add a few clicks of compression and preload at each end and evaluate if the rebound is too slow. If you want to do well on modern race courses you gotta learn to jump the DH bike anyway.
    I used to own a medium Bullit for jumping that felt great on steep, short BMX style jumps but was much less confidence inspiring on long, fast jumps and drops.
    M-1 are 8 3/4 inches of travel

    I can jump my M9 with 9 1/2 inches fine at Whistler, Northstar and local trails
    the trick is ENJOYING YOUR LIFE EACH DAY, don't waste them away wishing for better days

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by SHIVER ME TIMBERS View Post
    ...I can jump...
    Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!


    everyone around here knows the only jumping you do involves a bandwagon...


  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by .WestCoastHucker. View Post
    Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!


    everyone around here knows the only jumping you do involves a bandwagon...
    not a bandwagoner...but you got me
    the trick is ENJOYING YOUR LIFE EACH DAY, don't waste them away wishing for better days

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbnozpikr View Post
    I used to own a Kona and have no complaints about it. I have a friend on a Stab Garbanzo and he loves it. I also used to own the M1 and think that it is a great dh bike with current components. I'd say just tune the M1 for more of an FR application but Kona's a great brand.

    Well damnit! does anyone know if a M1 can take a single crown fork as far as down tube clearance? This might sound gay but i wanna do some x-ups and barspins... slopestyle is my ultimate goal...

  34. #34
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    I rode the Telluride Bike Park on a single crown Kona Operator after the one the local bike rental guys said I would be happier on the jumps with it. Now this bike park is no Whistler but it filled up my time for a day rather nicely. This was my first time on a Kona and besides the brake pads needing to be changed, I was really impressed with the bike. I missed a slack head angle tremendously on a couple of steeper sections of the World Cup Trail and there were a couple of rock gardens that I could have used a little more suspension on but that wasn't the bikes fault by any means. The jumps sections of the park are where I thought the bike really shined. Less mass and less travel made the bike very flickable and easy to jump. I felt very comfortable on the bike from the get go and I think that says a lot.

    Just my .02 cents.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moosey View Post
    Well damnit! does anyone know if a M1 can take a single crown fork as far as down tube clearance? This might sound gay but i wanna do some x-ups and barspins... slopestyle is my ultimate goal...
    Wanting to do x-ups and barspins doesn't sound gay...wish I had wanted to do them when I was your age, then I wouldn't have such a hard time now learning it. [joke about SMT's age] insert [/joke about SMT's age]

    As far as fitting the single crown, you might just have to try it, maybe SMT has already though

    As many "what kinda bike" posts of your's I've read I can't remember what forks you have on hand to try with.

    When you ride N* just take both of your bikes, with a couple 2x4's and some time you could figure out how to fit the Porter crossways just behind the cab of your pickup. I suggest doing this now, as you are already showing serious signs of potential BIKE WHORE SYNDROME (BWS.)

    I know, I've got it just little, and so does a lot of others around MTBR to varying degrees.

    As soon as you have some real income BWS will take over your life. You will continue to have more bikes than sexual experiences and find yourself spending all your time posting about your "stable" and starting build threads. And it might not end there, because BWS is just a specific type of Gear Whore Syndrome (for reference see tetongravity.com, splitboarder.com, rockclimbing.com, etc. and that doesn't even begin to touch motorized sports.)

    Go build some more jank and hit it with what you have, don't become just another whore. And if you do, get pictures and post up for the rest of us, either way.
    "Always remember to be yourself. Unless you suck."
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  36. #36
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    I spent some time on my buddies Operator this year, I have a Scratch, so it was interesting to swap. We are about the same size and weight. I liked the bike a lot, it rode real nice and handled well. And feels rock solid.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by drsmonkey View Post
    Wanting to do x-ups and barspins doesn't sound gay...wish I had wanted to do them when I was your age, then I wouldn't have such a hard time now learning it. [joke about SMT's age] insert [/joke about SMT's age]

    As far as fitting the single crown, you might just have to try it, maybe SMT has already though

    As many "what kinda bike" posts of your's I've read I can't remember what forks you have on hand to try with.

    When you ride N* just take both of your bikes, with a couple 2x4's and some time you could figure out how to fit the Porter crossways just behind the cab of your pickup. I suggest doing this now, as you are already showing serious signs of potential BIKE WHORE SYNDROME (BWS.)

    I know, I've got it just little, and so does a lot of others around MTBR to varying degrees.

    As soon as you have some real income BWS will take over your life. You will continue to have more bikes than sexual experiences and find yourself spending all your time posting about your "stable" and starting build threads. And it might not end there, because BWS is just a specific type of Gear Whore Syndrome (for reference see tetongravity.com, splitboarder.com, rockclimbing.com, etc. and that doesn't even begin to touch motorized sports.)

    Go build some more jank and hit it with what you have, don't become just another whore. And if you do, get pictures and post up for the rest of us, either way.
    lol i have BWS a little... I'm learning to control it. when i fist got a bike i was ready to sell it the next week and buy something new. now that I've had my M1 for 2 years, i really think its time for a new bike. due to lack of replacement parts, and the old technology...

    kirkwood ran outta cheap stinkys, so im just looking at upgrading my DH frame.... Got Glorys and Commencal Supremes in mind. i'd buy a new frame only...

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