Did you overbike your last purchase?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Did you overbike your last purchase?

    I ordered a 2020 Norco Optic and eager to ride. It's way more bike than I need. Friends all think I should have saved $ on my first purchase in 18 years (with a small resurgence in 2001-2003) and buy something like the Marin Rift Zone 3 or Fezarri Abajo Peak. I haven't ridden much at all in this time but used to ride maybe 2-6k mi/year only, back then. I'm not in shape but desperate to get on the bike again. Until it arrives I'm still riding (starting last year) my 2001 Razorback K2 Team bike every other weekend but being careful of the 76* headtube angle. It's a twitchy 24.5lb ride but still fun.

    I over biked hoping to keep me more stable. I figure if I'm going down it'll be on the downhill. For some reason the new Optic speaks to me.

    Did you over bike your last purchase?

    Anyone in north orange county-SoCal want a slowish ride partner...let me know.

    Drew

  2. #2
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    I think that it is hard to quantify whether you are overbiked or not. Depends more on the type of rider you are than on the terrain that you ride on.

    My local trails are mostly non technical and we only have 300 feet of elevation so no big gnarly downhills. However you can find stuff to pop off of if you are so inclined. Log overs, roots, rocks and grade reversals give me opportunities to get the bike in the air. Fun even if it is not huge air. The biggest drop we have at our local trails is about three or four feet which can be hucked or rolled. I like to huck it so my 140/125 bike works great. Not that you couldn't huck it with less or even no travel.

    Some of my riding buddies are just as happy to keep the rubber on the ground and their 120/100 bikes work well for them.

    In any case enjoy the heck out of the Optic and let us know how you like it.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drew888 View Post
    I ordered a 2020 Norco Optic and eager to ride. It's way more bike than I need. Friends all think I should have saved $ on my first purchase in 18 years (with a small resurgence in 2001-2003) and buy something like the Marin Rift Zone 3 or Fezarri Abajo Peak. I haven't ridden much at all in this time but used to ride maybe 12-16k mi/year only, back then. I'm not in shape but desperate to get on the bike again. Until it arrives I'm still riding (starting last year) my 2001 Razorback K2 Team bike every other weekend but being careful of the 76* headtube angle. It's a twitchy 24.5lb ride but still fun.

    I over biked hoping to keep me more stable. I figure if I'm going down it'll be on the downhill. For some reason the new Optic speaks to me.

    Did you over bike your last purchase?

    Anyone in north orange county-SoCal want a slowish ride partner...let me know.

    Drew
    Welcome back to riding. 12,000 - 16,000 miles per year back in the day are some mighty impressive numbers! Given that history, your riding should catch back up to the bike you bought in no time at all.

    I usually tend to go the opposite direction toward under-biked, but that is what I like and what I am used to after 35 years of mountain biking. Enjoy what you ride and don't worry about being under or over biked.

  4. #4
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    Much appreciated!

    One of the signs of old age, not proofing before you post! 2-6k/yr! I wish it were more.

  5. #5
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    Drew, you are perfectly fine. You'll quickly--very quickly--come to appreciate the overbikedness of your new steed.

    If you doubt this, keep your eighteen year old bike. Hop back on it in two months. I'll wager that you'll vow NEVER to swing a leg over that rickety old beast ever again.

    Edit:
    Sorry, I forgot to answer your question. Yes, I overbiked on my most recent buy. I grew into it. It's still capable of handling more than I can dish out, but that's a bonus when I get over my head.

  6. #6
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    That’s the perfect bike for Orange County riding. Most of our trails are steep and loose so the geo will suit the trails. Just keep your weight centered

  7. #7
    Nat
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    That bike looks awesome! I bet you'll love it. May your friends be jealous.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drew888 View Post
    I
    Did you over bike your last purchase?



    Drew

    Oh hell no. LOl I rode a little mnt back in the day in my 30's and now I just hand built from the ground up a bike with similar details at 27.5lbs and it makes getting back into it worth it. You have no excuses now, get after it!!!!

  9. #9
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    Yes. It's easy to "justify" what we buy but we really don't need much more than a rigid hardtail to enjoy mountain biking.

    Its been said here and elsewhere that there is a big difference between "need" and "want." Before someone else chimes in and says any mountain bike is more then we need, I will agree, but this is a mountain bike forum so I accept that we need some basic mountain bike.

    That also doesn't change the fact that I "want" a new and way too expensive bike but I don't "need" it.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drew888 View Post
    Did you over bike your last purchase?
    No! Never!

    To be honest, I never really bought into the idea of buying something that you will outgrow. I always buy what I intend to grow into. My train of though is why spend the extra cash on making two or three purchases when one will work. But, that's just me and I don't limit this philosophy to mountain bikes. Well, except maybe for clothes...
    You didn't quit riding because you're old, you're old because you quit riding.

  11. #11
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    I agree, when my XC turned 120mm Trail hardtail frame broke, I got a 140mm FS to grow into which is perfect for the diverse local terrain. A 170mm would be overbiked since i’d never learn to use it all but a 140mm with shorter travel rear like the Optic is great most anywhere.

  12. #12
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    I thought about this as well. The last mtb I purchased 15 years ago was a 130/125 S/C heckler, which was a fairly long travel bike at time. I had bumped up the fork and shock over the years to 140/140. Built the way I wanted it was and still is a pretty good bike for what it is. I looked at a bunch of longer travel stuff and ended up settling on a 160/140 bike (Pivot mach 5.5) so not much more, but with the new Geo, it is completely different for the same amount of travel.

    It's great for what we ride locally but we rode some stuff this weekend that was all smooth, no tech to think of but a lot of tight twisty stuff. I commented to my buddy that a hardtail or short travel, steep head angle bike would have been perfect for these trails. Definitely felt like I had too much bike for the situation, but I don't feel over biked.

    Man I only wish I could get 2 to 6 K per year. Might get close to 2k this year but that includes road miles.

  13. #13
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    Yes I did, and I grew into it nicely. Man do I love it when I go out of town and I'm on some rowdy new terrain. If I won the lottery maybe I'd buy a 120mm full squish, but since I can only have one expensive bike, having the bigger bike is just so much fun, especially when I'm tired and my line choices get questionable. Enjoy your bike! A tiny amount of pedaling efficiency is a small price to pay.

  14. #14
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    Like singtrak, I underbiked; bought a rigid SS. Provides its own challenges different than that of an overbike that you hope to grow into. Getting down the trail as fast and smoothly as possible is not everyone's goal (not saying there is anything wrong with that). I still ride a full suspension as well.
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    I have two bikes, a short travel FS 29er and a mid travel FS 27.5. If anything I'm undergunned on both bikes, so I'm stepping up to a more aggressive geo and increasing from 120-130mm on my 29er and then I'm bumping my 27.5 enduro bike from 140 to 160

    I don't know that more travel is always the answer, sometimes a short travel bike with aggressive geo and robust build will do in a pinch.

    I don't ride rigid, SS, or hardtails any more. Life is too short and my body is to beat to tolerate that sort of thing, so I focus on ride quality and increased time in the saddle.

    If I want to beat on myself I can go back to riding mountain unis.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    Like singtrak, I underbiked; bought a rigid SS. Provides its own challenges different than that of an overbike that you hope to grow into. Getting down the trail as fast and smoothly as possible is not everyone's goal (not saying there is anything wrong with that). I still ride a full suspension as well.
    All I've got are hardtails and rigid bikes. I sold off my last full suspension bike about 3 years ago (just before I turned 50) and I cracked my soft-tail in Moab last spring. I love to ride and demo a bunch of the new bikes every year, but I don't really care much about what bike I'm riding as long as I'm out there on the trail.

  17. #17
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    Nobody has any business telling you that you "over-biked".

  18. #18
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    I haven't really overbiked (in frame materials maybe- last purchase was a rigid titanium SS and I've ponied up for some nice custom steel SS in the past).

    My FS bike is 2014/15 vintage XC-ish (120mm front and less rear travel). I frequently get to 90% or so way through the travel during the most technical rides and that's ok by me.

    Some of my friends continue going bigger on travel (150mm or more), dropper posts, etc. All that will do is get me riding more technical lines (on already rocky terrain) bordering on DH at times which I don't really want to do anymore.
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  19. #19
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    Only you can answer if you're overbiked...ride the hell out of it for a few months and report back. Long ago I went for FS and as years passed I 'settled' on 150-ish travel.
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  20. #20
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    Don't know yet. Waiting for it to arrive.

    Lashed out a whole £50 on it too...

    Did you overbike your last purchase?-lhs.jpg

    What do you think? Over-biked or not?
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Don't know yet. Waiting for it to arrive.

    Lashed out a whole £50 on it too...

    Click image for larger version. 

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    What do you think? Over-biked or not?
    That's a pretty sexy old lugged bike.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by twodownzero View Post
    That's a pretty sexy old lugged bike.
    Dawes Windrush. Been looking for a complete original one for ages. Mid 1950s and built for the British offroad fraternity in the Rough Stuff Fellowship. (It's worth clicking the link and look what our predecessors got up to in the mountains)

    Equipped with the luxury of several ratios (4 ) it was designed to take on the worst the mountains could throw at you - these days it would be called a gravel bike or maybe a bike packer.

    I know they're a competent bike because I have one already and it's my favourite under-bike which gets taken places where generally only mtbs go, eg spots like this in the Highlands (Loch Einich) and so on





    Under-biking is more fun IMO. Modern mtbs are so good it's like riding on a paved trail, so you have to seek out more rigorous terrain for your fun or ride somewhere with specially made trails. Under-biking means any old track is fun and with just a few gears, you get a good workout..
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  23. #23
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    Yes, but only temporarily until I get up to speed with a way more capable bike, and take it on suitable terrain. At a seminar recently they said, "buy the bike you aspire to ride". Having done just that, I would have to agree. I'm learning more and faster on a bike with more capability in reserve, and having a blast on tracks that used to be dicey on a lesser bike. The flip side is that I should avoid the easier trails as they are comparatively hard work, and not a lot of fun when the bike just flattens everything.

    Being under-biked is fine on easy terrain, although it can range from fun though meh to frankly unpleasant. On rowdy terrain it can be scary or downright risky.

    The best thing for any given trail is the Goldilocks bike: not too hot, not too cold, but juuuuuuuuust right. :-D Or simply the one under your bum right now.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Modern mtbs are so good it's like riding on a paved trail, so you have to seek out more rigorous terrain for your fun or ride somewhere with specially made trails.
    More rigorous terrain and specially made trails are really fun and rewarding though.

  25. #25
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    2nd to last bike was an aluminum HT - Specialized Chisel Comp. I put away the 15 yr. old Stumpjumper FS as I realized the Chisel going to be enough bike for the riding I do, fast and twisty ST, no rocks, lots of roots, short steep hills. If I were riding rock gardens for 2-3 hrs. I might need a carbon FS, but the Chisel deals with what I ride perfectly, so not too much bike for my use.

    Likewise the gravel bike I just purchased, a Cannondale Topstone 105, is about perfect for my dirt road and easy trail riding and with a 2nd set of wheels with 28mm tires is my fast commuter. The 105 group is as cost effective a group as can be found and my 2nd bike running it. I had no need for a carbon gravel bike, didnt like the carbon Topstone in any event.

    I like being practical.

  26. #26
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    Sold my Heckler 150mm of travel, and I don't ride that kind of terrain, so I gave up suspension, and got a Krampus.
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  27. #27
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    Now I feel a little overbiked with an eight speed hub on my rigid steel bike. Apparently Velobike only uses four and it's plenty. Must be clean living.
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    More rigorous terrain and specially made trails are really fun and rewarding though.
    Even more so when you're under-biked...

    When I was out on that white bike up there a few months ago we came to an "interesting" long descent. Seeing as it was an unknown quantity I bravely sent my mate down it first (he's Australian, so is expendable).

    He was to give me a yell when he got to the bottom.

    Instead he got chatting to a group of lads on full suspension mtbs who were contemplating whether they should try it, so I got worried that he may have pranged and went down anyway.

    Apparently they could hear me coming from a few hundred yards away, something to do with the air turning blue - at that point I was not so enthused about under-biking.

    When I got close to the bottom I saw the group scurrying out of the way to clear the track. My mate (did I mention he's Australian? They're cruel) had laconically remarked to them "Watch out lads, Santa Claus is coming down. Fast, and he has no brakes".

    The latter was true enough, 1950s brakes on wet rims aren't a good idea on steep rocky descents. Fast? not so sure, certainly faster than I'd have chosen, but the first part cut to the quick though.

    Santa Claus? - just because I have a white beard and was wearing a red jacket. Humbug!

    (Trimmed the beard that very night )

    So under-biking is indeed fun, even if it is Grade Z fun sometimes.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Even more so when you're under-biked...
    Maybe, I guess. It might be fun until your bike becomes your limiting factor. Walking your bike or having to take the B-lines when you know you could ride a section on an appropriate (not under-) bike isn't real awesome.

  30. #30
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    I think my 2018 Trance Advance 2 is a pretty solid choice for myself.

    The suspension components are robust enough to handle all 265~lbs of me and the XL frame fits my 6'3" size quite nicely...

    I like the 27.5 wheels as the bike is nimble and lively... I haven't loved the 29ers so much personally.. When I encounter terrain I want to try I also feel like the bike is up to it, If I am..



    I currently have Minion DHF 2.6 and Aggressor 2.5 as well as a 50mm Deity Highside riser handlebars, I have Giant Pinner DH flat pedals and a WTB Volt saddle.

    I should probably upgrade the brakes but the 180mm rotors / SLX brakes have been fine .. I don't do a ton of super long / steep downhills.

    SLX groupset has held up quite well solid workhorse stuff..

    all in all this is a solid fun bike that I'm well pleased with.
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    I also live in Orange County and the 2020 Norco Optic is definitely not over biking it. Unless your riding Chino Hills all the time. The Optic is a very capable short travel 29er. Great choice! Most of the older riders I talk to are buying mid to long travel 29er bikes. They say the reason being that the longer travel bikes are more forgiving which allows them to ride longer with less impact on the back and shoulders. They also save you when things get to technical. I agree, just hate climbing on long travel bikes.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Maybe, I guess. It might be fun until your bike becomes your limiting factor. Walking your bike or having to take the B-lines when you know you could ride a section on an appropriate (not under-) bike isn't real awesome.
    Where I ride is natural trails, I've no idea what a B-line is, and if I'm walking my bike is probably on my shoulder and it's not rideable on any bike.

    I don't ride to be awesome, just for fun and to get places where there's no people.

    At my age, most of my awesome friends have crippled themselves and stopped riding decades ago.
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  33. #33
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    In my 25+ years of riding and racing, I think I've overbiked, as it were, once or twice. In my situation, it was once purchasing a high end XC HT (Spec S-Works circa 2002 or so) that demanded of me some yet-to-be established racing skills. The bike was fire as hells.
    The only important thing these days, is rhythm and melody. Rhythm...and melody.

  34. #34
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    Yes, and I am loving it!

    2018 Intense Primer purchased in October and got one hell of a deal.

    I really do not care if I "overbiked" or not as I am at that point in my life where you can either, take me of leave me.

    Steve

  35. #35
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Where I ride is natural trails, I've no idea what a B-line is, and if I'm walking my bike is probably on my shoulder and it's not rideable on any bike.

    I don't ride to be awesome, just for fun and to get places where there's no people.

    At my age, most of my awesome friends have crippled themselves and stopped riding decades ago.
    Where do you ride? Maybe those trails are rideable (maybe not by you but by someone) on a more robust bike? A B-line is an easier, alternate line for people who can't or don't want to ride the more challenging line.

    Awesome = fun. Fun = awesome.

    How old are you? People have progressed the sport quite a bit in the past few decades. There are talented people out there who can ride some amazing terrain. I haven't seen anyone do it on old drop bar touring-style bikes though. Mostly people are using more modern equipment.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post

    At my age, most of my awesome friends have crippled themselves and stopped riding decades ago.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Where do you ride?

    How old are you?
    Here are your answers, Nat!

    https://forums.mtbr.com/fifty-years-...l#post14378479
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  37. #37
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    A ha. It looks like we’re doing two totally different sports.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    A ha. It looks like we’re doing two totally different sports.
    Well, that looks to have been more of a road ride but Velo has some interesting rides. True cross country, as in grab your bike and head out across the country exploring on ancient trails in Scotland. He's talked about their "freedom to roam" laws in Scotland, where you can ride anywhere. He's done some pretty long races on single speeds. So yeah, he may not be zipping down bermed raceways and hitting big drops and flying through massive rock gardens; that's one thing I love about this sport, so many ways to ride and enjoy it!
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  39. #39
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    Isn’t that aka “randonneuring?”

    Not really my thing but I can see how some people would like it.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    ...So yeah, he may not be zipping down bermed raceways and hitting big drops and flying through massive rock gardens...
    True, because I ride rigid singlespeeds I take a conservative approach on big drops or rock gardens. I'm usually riding on my own in places where I won't be found for a while. There's an element of probability there. I regard it like smoking, or drug taking - it's usually ok, but at some point it'll go wrong and you're wrecked. If you want to keep riding as long as I have, don't get wrecked.

    In races, no problem, there's plenty people going by, and an ambulance handy.

    Also races are usually on artificial courses with those features and so there's always a line unlike on real mountain tracks. For example when I did the World 24 Hour Championships in Ft William a few years back I was surprised at how rideable it was compared to the impression I had been given. I was grumpy at the wooden bits over the boggy stuff though - surely a real mountainbiker should be able to cope with a few sections of deep mud or a water crossing.

    For your entertainment, here is another under-biked ride I did before leaving Australia to come back to Scotland:

    I decided to go up the mountain, but the road is mental, so I figured I'd try the old pioneers track. I don't mind a bit of hike-a-bike, but this got ridiculous.







    After several hundred feet and a few kilometers at last I came to this nice track.



    It was a huge relief because I was a bit knackered, the tropical heat was getting to me. Luckily, according to my map reading I was about to come to a gravel road for the next 6km.

    I was really looking forward to that!

    But all was not what it seemed on the map, some was good, but too much was







    So basically another 5km of hike-a-bike.

    Now some would say it's daft taking a bike all that way, but having got there it was 30km on the road to get back, so a bike was necessary. And the bonus was most of it was downhill and tight bends, so I got to monster the cars on the way down.

    And that probably illustrates the point I was trying to make. Whatever you're on, it's probably the wrong bike at some point, and any bike is better than no bike..

    EDIT: how come some of my pics are sideways? Is because I took them on the other side of the world?
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
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  41. #41
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    It's good to read a little description of your rides again, VB. Have missed the write-ups that you have formally did.
    "Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway" John Wayne

  42. #42
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    Interesting terrain VB. That is reminiscent of some of the rooty terrain in the Pacific Northwest. Other than the one large deadfall it all looks rideable on a more robust bike. It would be an advanced trail, but I'm sure a lot of people could manage it. It would probably make an awesome ride.

    Not my images but here are some examples:

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    Did you overbike your last purchase?-djon7spu4aaalev.jpg

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    I ride 99% on Long Island NY and own a 2018 Orbea Ocaam TR10. It came with 130/120 travel and a XCish build. The bike eats up the terrain but for my trails, I felt that the front was a little to jacked up. I purchased a Fox 120 cartridge and reduced the fork travel to 120. I haven't ridden it yet but expect the change to push me a little more in to the xc category. I am also trying to resist swapping the dropper for a carbon rigid. lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Interesting terrain VB. That is reminiscent of some of the rooty terrain in the Pacific Northwest. Other than the one large deadfall it all looks rideable on a more robust bike...

    Not my images but here are some examples...
    Aye, but those riders are going downhill.

    The track I was on was going up hill, steeply.

    Here's a couple of other examples of under-biking :





    (Sorry they're not action shots, but seeing as I was riding on my own I wanted to check that the line I was going to take didn't end up somewhere unpleasant.)

    I suppose that's the sort of thing that's a cinch on a dual suspension bike, hardly worth the bother really.

    Edit: Apologies Drew888, I've derailed the thread somewhat. I'll shut up now.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 57º36' Highlands, Scotland

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Aye, but those riders are going downhill.

    The track I was on was going up hill, steeply.
    You called it a hike-a-bike, so were you walking or pedaling up those trails? The downhillers were definitely biking. Were you?

    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    I suppose that's the sort of thing that's a cinch on a dual suspension bike, hardly worth the bother really.
    Yeah, right. Sure.

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    My progression on bikes correlates with the number of injuries I have had during the last 12+ years: Hardtail---110/110---130/130---150/150. At this rate I'm going to be on an enduro soon! I do a lot of climbing and while my Santa Cruz will never keep up with an XC bike going up, I'm so much happier going downhill with more travel and I don't mind earning the downhills. Just much easier on my back, shoulders, etc. I'm in OC, so send me a PM if you want to ride Drew888.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    You called it a hike-a-bike, so were you walking or pedaling up those trails? The downhillers were definitely biking. Were you?
    Bike on shoulder to go up that lot. Never seen anyone try to ride up stuff like that get more than a few metres. I'd love to see it being done for 8-10 miles.

    Are you saying those downhillers ride up that stuff? I'm impressed.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 57º36' Highlands, Scotland

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Bike on shoulder to go up that lot. Never seen anyone try to ride up stuff like that get more than a few metres. I'd love to see it being done for 8-10 miles.

    Are you saying those downhillers ride up that stuff? I'm impressed.
    I'm saying that you went for a walk with your bike so it's not really anything to brag about. Why don't you ride down that trail instead of walking up the trail then down the road? How about riding up the road then down the trail?

    Drew888, don't let anyone try to convince you you've bought too much bike. While they're walking shit you'll be riding. Enjoy the hell out of that sweet new ride!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    I'm saying that you went for a walk with your bike so it's not really anything to brag about. Why don't you ride down that trail instead of walking up the trail then down the road? How about riding up the road then down the trail?

    Drew888, don't let anyone try to convince you you've bought too much bike. While they're walking shit you'll be riding. Enjoy the hell out of that sweet new ride!
    1. I'm not knocking Drew's choice. Everyone rides what they like. The point I was making is that there's no perfect bike. Generally speaking, the more you optimise a bike for one aspect of riding, the less capable it is for others.

    2. I thought I explained why I went up the trail - the road is dangerous for cyclists climbing slowly. It's tight and winding with poor sight lines for motorists with a large speed differential coming up fast to a cyclist. Riding back down the road, there is no speed differential, so it's safer. On the way back I was travelling at the same speed as most of the cars and overtaking some.

    3. I wasn't aware it was bragging. I thought it was more pointing out the realities of natural trail riding where the terrain is unknown to you. I was expecting just a short carry of a few km, and then a much longer ride on dirt tracks leading to singletrack and a descent. However the unexpected delay due to the extra h-a-b meant I had to change my plans because I did not have enough daylight for my original intention.

    I'm not sure what your point is though, but if you're not prepared to carry the bike or walk it sometimes, how on earth do you get your bike up steep rooty hills, rock faces, over bogs and terrain if there is no track or convenient road?
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 57º36' Highlands, Scotland

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