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  1. #301
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    They were far enough from road bikes that they were featured in various BMX mags:

    Old Mountain Bikes: Full Bore Cruisers - January 1980

    Old Mountain Bikes: Ritchey Mountain Bike Review - February 1980
    ^ Some bad@ss bikes that kickstarted this whole madness, not seeing a lot of "roadie roots" there.

  2. #302
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    I love this line:

    "If you enjoy getting away from it all, enjoy bicycle riding, and have a flair for style, you should definitely check into the MB."

    So WTF happened?
    Life is too short to ride a bike you don't love.

  3. #303
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    They were far enough from road bikes that they were featured in various BMX mags:

    Old Mountain Bikes: Full Bore Cruisers - January 1980

    Old Mountain Bikes: Ritchey Mountain Bike Review - February 1980
    Really cool articles!
    - I'm surprised that as early as Jan 1980 there was a magazine about mountain bikes
    - Why in the friggin hell is Mert Lawwill not mentioned more in the MTB history? At this point in time, when Ritchey and Breeze had only built about 10 frames each, Lawill had 75 "pro cruisers" under his belt and plans for the next 100!
    - Sounds like Lawill had the first production MTB, not Specialized who gets the credit for the 82 Stumpy.
    - Bikes from 500 to 1200 bucks, the high end for a hand built frame from Breeze or Ritchey, called "ungodly expensive".

  4. #304
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    One other thought about the old days. The first MTBs might have been slack, but they were taken from existing cruiser frames. It wasn't long (sometime in the 80s), when mountain bikes had largely adopted the 71/73 angles as standard. That means that somewhere a long the line the general consensus became that the steeper angles were better than the old slack frames.

  5. #305
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    One other thought about the old days. The first MTBs might have been slack, but they were taken from existing cruiser frames. It wasn't long (sometime in the 80s), when mountain bikes had largely adopted the 71/73 angles as standard. That means that somewhere a long the line the general consensus became that the steeper angles were better than the old slack frames.
    Exactly ^

    Those old bikes were awesome but they didn't have everything quite dialed yet (surprise!) and soon discovered that steeper angles worked better for what they had going at the time. Refinement continues on.


    Funny that my new bike is 71/73, and it rocks!

  6. #306
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhazard View Post
    Okay, first off, mtb didn't really progress from BMX. It came from Road Riding. The road specific geo came from the influence of the bike builders at the time, who were former roadies.

    And freestyle isn't what really put the screws to BMX either. While some of the biggest names in Freestyle came from roots of bmx, they weren't the top stars of the time. Huge rider salaries, huge prizes, (on both sides of bmx/freestyle) really helped to nearly kill both genres.

    ...AND the "street image" of freestyle didn't really come about until the industry started dying, and you saw a rise in rider-owned comanies.

    Either way, none of that has much to with the evolution of mountain bike frame design. Though I would say the influx of some of the bmx riders in the 90's might have "helped" (riser bars and low seats?).
    I'd been racing BMX when MTB began to emerge. How that was mis-read to draw lineage of Mountain Bike riding to BMX track riding... uhh, cough, thhppt

    Freestyle BMX drove a wedge in BMX, and hence the huge loss in ridership. All the other consequences made into light are the effect of poor choices by Industry at the time, driven by profit. Frame Standers, Axle Pegs, Axle Pegs w/ Grip Tape. ...aluminum versions of each of those now, then make them hollow - it's was endless gadgetry on the back of BMX racing.

    Soon the epitome of frame design will be found (obviously...) and the sport will reach it's own end of progress. Land Access battles, trail construction battles, the inevitable secular developments which will only allow specific bikes on their trails. All for the fun of riding, looking forward to it all - shopping for a Road Bike.
    I like Sand - I don't like Witches


  7. #307
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    One other thought about the old days. The first MTBs might have been slack, but they were taken from existing cruiser frames. It wasn't long (sometime in the 80s), when mountain bikes had largely adopted the 71/73 angles as standard. That means that somewhere a long the line the general consensus became that the steeper angles were better than the old slack frames.
    I'd like to see the fork offsets and trail numbers included in that discussion of shifting head tube angles.

  8. #308
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    I read this on MBR this morning. Tester is 5'10" on a large Mondraker Foxy.

    Singletrack Magazine | Long Termers: Richard's Mondraker Foxy Carbon XR Special Edition
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  9. #309
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    Interesting review. The tester did mention weighting the front wheel more, but even becoming second nature could be a waste of energy for races with a lot of climbing. The other thing I noticed was a distict lack of tight, twisty trails in the photos. I wonder how the tester would have felt about the bike in different situations like we have in places on the East Coast or Midwest..

  10. #310
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    The large foxy has 501mm of reach and 660mm theoretical top tube! Even with that 30mm stem I don't think I could ride a large and I'm 5'9.5". He is only half an inch taller than me. I think that reach and TT are too short on most bikes but I think he has pushed past my limit. I would love to demo some Mondrakers and find out though.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  11. #311
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    Quote Originally Posted by l'oiseau View Post
    I've not read all of this but I'd have to say there must be some trade off between 'modern' geometries and 'old' ones. And what defines old? My bike from '94 had a longish stem but mainly because I was riding a small frame and needed it for fit. If I went to medium I needed a shorter stem to fit my body and not be bent over like a hunchback. I guess people were riding like that back then but I figured out pretty quick a small bike was easier to maneuver even with a long stem (shorter wheelbase). Compared to what it is now it was horribly slow going down and my ass was two feet back off the saddle for the slightest drop.
    Another thing to remember is that heavily sloped top tubes weren't common in those days, so lots of people sized down on their frames both for easier maneuverability and so so that they didn't crotch themselves on the top tube if they had to put a foot down in a tricky section. Most bikes in those days had level, or pretty close to level top tubes which was horrible for standover clearance.

    As for new vs. old geometry, my 2003 RM Blizzard is pretty much the same as the early 90s version, the geometry was mostly unchanged throughout its production life. The only things it does better than my 2015 Norco Range is pumping through smoother dips & humps and doing trials type moves to pivot the bike or side-hop it up obstacles. The Range climbs better, descends better by a mile, and zips through twisty singletrack just as fast if not faster. I've yet to find a switchback where the Range hangs up and the Blizzard doesn't, if it's tight enough that the Range can't make it the Blizzard isn't getting through either.

  12. #312
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    I only read to page 3 and the top of this page which I'm looking forward to going back and reading those articles.

    This thread is interesting and great timing for me. I just got done with "Just Outstanding" for anyone in SoCal. I brought the Epic, my Trance with 170mm front travel, 160-ish rear travel, and my friend brought his stock '15 Remedy 9 and his Haro 29" hardtail. We had 2 guys going with us that don't own mountain bikes which was the reason for bringing the extra bikes. I haven't ridden the Epic in a long time. The last time I posted about it on here I was never going to get rid of it because it was so much fun with such great handling.

    This trip provided 16 miles of downhill through lots of different terrain and a 3-5 mile uphill section. The thing I learned from all of this is the Trance with it's very different geometry literally does everything better than the Epic after switching back and forth a few times. In the beginning I thought the Trance did not handle tight switchbacks as well and was not as much fun. Now the Epic feels unstable and is not confidence inspiring at all. The Trance climbs as well or better too, go figure. This is especially evident on very steep, loose uphills where you're trying to keep the front end on the ground and not spin the rear too. I can't think of one reason to keep the Epic other than to have a nice bike for the fiancée to ride. I definitely like the new stuff better. The Epic isn't exactly old but it has more old school geometry.
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  13. #313
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    Quote Originally Posted by BuickGN View Post
    I only read to page 3 and the top of this page which I'm looking forward to going back and reading those articles.

    This thread is interesting and great timing for me. I just got done with "Just Outstanding" for anyone in SoCal. I brought the Epic, my Trance with 170mm front travel, 160-ish rear travel, and my friend brought his stock '15 Remedy 9 and his Haro 29" hardtail. We had 2 guys going with us that don't own mountain bikes which was the reason for bringing the extra bikes. I haven't ridden the Epic in a long time. The last time I posted about it on here I was never going to get rid of it because it was so much fun with such great handling.

    This trip provided 16 miles of downhill through lots of different terrain and a 3-5 mile uphill section. The thing I learned from all of this is the Trance with it's very different geometry literally does everything better than the Epic after switching back and forth a few times. In the beginning I thought the Trance did not handle tight switchbacks as well and was not as much fun. Now the Epic feels unstable and is not confidence inspiring at all. The Trance climbs as well or better too, go figure. This is especially evident on very steep, loose uphills where you're trying to keep the front end on the ground and not spin the rear too. I can't think of one reason to keep the Epic other than to have a nice bike for the fiancée to ride. I definitely like the new stuff better. The Epic isn't exactly old but it has more old school geometry.
    yeah a better comparo would a 09 stumpjumper but I still think the trance would win that as well.

  14. #314
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    The new Troy has 440mm of reach for the medium size. This is quite long compared to a lot of bikes. HTA 67 degrees is not terribly slack so it is likely a good all rounder.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  15. #315
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    The new Troy has 440mm of reach for the medium size. This is quite long compared to a lot of bikes. HTA 67 degrees is not terribly slack so it is likely a good all rounder.
    From bike in signature.
    550mm from bottom bracket to center of handlebar with 50mm stem (500mm reach I believe), 440mm from nose of the saddle, I feel like keeping saddle front most position.
    70.5 degrees.
    It has 580mm effective top tube by specs

    Another bike.
    Hybrid is something hopeless, 640mm measured from bb to handlebar, feels bit like pedal boat or recumbent, but that too has 'correct' frame size by my height.

    Both are Large size bikes.

    I would think that this Trek has quite bit longer reach than that 440mm of Troy, even if we take account different frame sizes.

    If most bikes have shorter reach than Troy, then I find bit odd that my bike came with over 100mm stem.

    I put today 35mm stem and 720mm bar, (had 50mm stem and 630mm bar installed) don't know if that makes geometry modern, but it is different, some way worse, some way better, need to ride more to know anything, lot less nimble came to mind.
    Trek 3700 Disc, frame, wheelset, seatpost, fork and rear brake original, rest is upgraded.

  16. #316
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    For your bike to gave a 580mm TT it would have to have a extremely steep STA to have that kind of reach. Reach = horizontal distance front centre of BB to centre of HT, just so we are talking about the same thing.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  17. #317
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    The new Troy has 440mm of reach for the medium size. This is quite long compared to a lot of bikes. HTA 67 degrees is not terribly slack so it is likely a good all rounder.
    Only looking at 2 figures? What about the wheelbase, mechanical trail, BB drop, RC/FC, and stack height, which are no less important? Every figure is worth considering.


    (right click, open image in new tab/Chrome *or* view image/FF)

  18. #318
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    For your bike to gave a 580mm TT it would have to have a extremely steep STA to have that kind of reach. Reach = horizontal distance front centre of BB to centre of HT, just so we are talking about the same thing.
    Stack height and angles play a huge part in this.
    As mentioned a page or two ago my old Stumpjumper has a ~480mm reach with a 595mm tt and 490mm st.
    It also has a stack height on the order of 4"+ less than most current bikes.
    *** --- *** --- ***

  19. #319
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    It is long for a medium and I only wanted to illustrate that another manufacturer has stretched out the reach.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  20. #320
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    It is long for a medium and I only wanted to illustrate that another manufacturer has stretched out the reach.
    To put it in perspective it is nearly the same as last year's large with slightly shorter chainstays.
    It's just a flesh wound!

  21. #321
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    Or still shorter than bikes from 8 years ago.


  22. #322
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    For your bike to gave a 580mm TT it would have to have a extremely steep STA to have that kind of reach. Reach = horizontal distance front centre of BB to centre of HT, just so we are talking about the same thing.
    There is some data in nice table form, STA looks like to be 73 degrees:
    Testing?Trek 3700 2013 Product Review | Rutland Cycling

    I did measure again, I'm quite confident that I can't get any reliable measurement taken, got so many different measurements, no matter how precise I did try to be with plump line.

    Might be 420mm, might be anything +/- 40mm from that, finding level ground alone proved to be a challenge.

    According to this page around 460-470mm would be recommended top tube length for my (horribly inaccurate) measurements, but for me that sounds quite short (that would be over 100mm less than my current) and if trend is even to longer TT perhaps I have even more trouble ahead of me.
    The Bike Fit Guide: Sierra Trading Post

    6ft 1 inch tall, for me 580mm top tube seems to be too long, there was mentioning of 660mm TT length and under 6ft guy, I just wonder how one could ride so, wouldn't pedals be quite far forwards of good power position, wouldn't that get to knees quite horribly?

    It really would be nice to find bottom of this, I might need custom frame if things really are like they appear, maybe I just take more measurements and be more confused
    Trek 3700 Disc, frame, wheelset, seatpost, fork and rear brake original, rest is upgraded.

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    I think everyone should use some sort of a apples to apples comparison, since comparing an entry level bike that isn't expected to see hard use and a 140mm trail bike doesn't prove much of anything.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IPunchCholla View Post
    To put it in perspective it is nearly the same as last year's large with slightly shorter chainstays.
    Maybe to keep up with the trend of people sizing up to get more reach. That's probably a negative trait that fashion is driving. Longer travel bikes should be shorter, since their increased travel increases the overall length of the bike on it's own, IMO. The slacker angles already put the front tire further forward anyways. There's a reason why XC bikes have longer reaches than all mountain/enduro/trail bikes.

    I know one and heard of a lot of people who are the same average 5'10" height as me who have gone for large sized trail bikes. A friend of mine rides the same model as me, only in large, despite our identical height. I rode a large at interbike, and it was a great bike, but my medium handles even better. Far more maneuverable without being twitchy, the large was a touch too stable.

  25. #325
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    Maybe to keep up with the trend of people sizing up to get more reach. That's probably a negative trait that fashion is driving. Longer travel bikes should be shorter, since their increased travel increases the overall length of the bike on it's own, IMO. The slacker angles already put the front tire further forward anyways. There's a reason why XC bikes have longer reaches than all mountain/enduro/trail bikes.

    I know one and heard of a lot of people who are the same average 5'10" height as me who have gone for large sized trail bikes. A friend of mine rides the same model as me, only in large, despite our identical height. I rode a large at interbike, and it was a great bike, but my medium handles even better. Far more maneuverable without being twitchy, the large was a touch too stable.
    Same here.
    I am 5'8.5" and went with a L Nomad for the longer reach. The WB is almost 120cm...
    Last edited by jazzanova; 08-13-2015 at 08:46 AM.

  26. #326
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    I think everyone should use some sort of a apples to apples comparison, since comparing an entry level bike that isn't expected to see hard use and a 140mm trail bike doesn't prove much of anything.
    Perhaps first it would be needed to find out what apple is, hype that looks like an apple is not an apple.


    Anyway Modern Mountain Bike Geometry Defined - Transition Explains Effective Top Tube Versus Reach - Mountain Bikes Features - Vital MTB
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  27. #327
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    That article states some things as if they were established fact, like short stems offering more stability, which is actually arguable. The shorter stem makes steering more twitchy, while a longer mechanical trail (from a slack HA) resists steering, which the short stem is supposed to address (better addressed with more fork offset, IMO). It also doesn't mention anything like longer reach compromising flickability.

    See this thread here in the link below, that ventures what kind of geo figures determine flickability. Higher stack and longer reach seem to negate "short CS" and its effect on flickability. A "tetherball" analogy seems to have settled the thread.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/general-discu...on-948293.html

  28. #328
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    That article states some things as if they were established fact, like short stems offering more stability, which is actually arguable.
    I agree. Other arguable points they made:
    - When you lengthen the front end you can shorten the chainstays to negate the effect on wheelbase. Not necessarily true, because chainstays are already short and in many cases can not be shortened enough to make up for the long front ends caused by long reach and slack HTA. The fact is, wheelbases are getting longer.

    - When you keep the wheelbase the same, by having a long front and short rear, it keeps the stability of the bike the same. Not necessarily true. Weight distribution is different, and stability is different. I would make the argument that stability is better with more centered weight distribution.

    I do think it is a good article though.

  29. #329
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    Probably implying only DH stability with the rearward weight distro, considering who they are. They probably aren't interested in our little challenges like technical rock and root crawling. Standing straighter on a descent is more natural than being behind the saddle, especially if your brake squat/anti-rise % is low and need to put more weight rearward to counter the forward weight shift when braking.

    They could also be implying that the longer wheelbase due to a longer reach, combined with the short stem increases stability, but still misleading how they worded it as the shorter stem offering stability, when the better word choice is to say the longer front center offers DH stability.

  30. #330
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    Poster boy of the forward geometry was probably the Mondraker Foxy.
    It won the best bike of 2014 in mbr.
    https://youtu.be/ulQLAMHQ2Fk

  31. #331
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    It's been going back and forth... 2015 is the SB5c's year.

    WhatMTB/BikeRadar gave it to the Anthem X 29 in '13, I believe, for trail bikes under 2500 GBP. E29 was getting a lot of awards in 14. Tallboy LTc in '12? Bicycling and Outdoor mag seemed to like the SB95.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    That article states some things as if they were established fact, like short stems offering more stability, which is actually arguable. The shorter stem makes steering more twitchy, while a longer mechanical trail (from a slack HA) resists steering, which the short stem is supposed to address (better addressed with more fork offset, IMO). It also doesn't mention anything like longer reach compromising flickability.

    See this thread here in the link below, that ventures what kind of geo figures determine flickability. Higher stack and longer reach seem to negate "short CS" and its effect on flickability. A "tetherball" analogy seems to have settled the thread.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/general-discu...on-948293.html
    Shorter stems along with wider bars DO offer more stability. Don't separate the two. Nobody suggested using 600mm bars on a 50mm stem.

    Long stems and narrow bars put the rider's hands (and CG) too far forward and makes it more difficult to properly position yourself on the bike for anything other than climbing.

  33. #333
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    It's been going back and forth... 2015 is the SB5c's year.

    WhatMTB/BikeRadar gave it to the Anthem X 29 in '13, I believe, for trail bikes under 2500 GBP. E29 was getting a lot of awards in 14. Tallboy LTc in '12? Bicycling and Outdoor mag seemed to like the SB95.
    Here you go. From this year:
    http://www.bikeradar.com/us/mtb/gear...y-xr-15-49399/

  34. #334
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    I've recently switched from 750mm bars and a 70mm stem to 800mm bars and a 50mm stem, and I can't help but feel like I'm gonna go otb because the bars aren't out in front of me enough. Is this just something I have to get used to or is the stem a little too short? Also, weighting the front for turns feels awkward now

    Sent from my SCH-S968C using Tapatalk

  35. #335
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8iking VIIking View Post
    I've recently switched from 750mm bars and a 70mm stem to 800mm bars and a 50mm stem, and I can't help but feel like I'm gonna go otb because the bars aren't out in front of me enough. Is this just something I have to get used to or is the stem a little too short? Also, weighting the front for turns feels awkward now

    Sent from my SCH-S968C using Tapatalk
    Give it some time. It usually takes few weeks to adjust. Then if it still feels weird change it.

  36. #336
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8iking VIIking View Post
    I've recently switched from 750mm bars and a 70mm stem to 800mm bars and a 50mm stem, and I can't help but feel like I'm gonna go otb because the bars aren't out in front of me enough. Is this just something I have to get used to or is the stem a little too short? Also, weighting the front for turns feels awkward now

    Sent from my SCH-S968C using Tapatalk
    What makes you feel like you're going to go OTB and what actually makes you go OTB are two different things.

    When you run into something that makes you go OTB, it does it because your momentum pushes your CG out past the front contact patch. With the shorter stem and wider bars your hands are a little further back, so it will move your CG a little further back, so your momentum is a little less likely to push you forward enough for it to happen.

    It also makes shifting your weight back easier and makes it feel more natural, since your hands are already a little further back.

  37. #337
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzanova View Post
    Give it some time. It usually takes few weeks to adjust. Then if it still feels weird change it.
    I've got a 60 in the parts bin...800/60 may be the sweet spot, but I'll give it a few more rides with the 50

    I should mention that this is also my first "trail" bike, coming from a XC hardtail with 685 bars/90 stem. I think I'm just so used to the long and stretched fit

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  38. #338
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    Just saying, there are bikes with short fronts and longer rears racking up awards too. Trying to supply the other half of the story. Mentioning the E29 was sort of how I was supporting how things are going back and forth, since it's long in front and short out back, though not as long as the Mondraker. SB5c could be considered what's new, since it's normally been about getting the rear as short as possible, even compromising with seated fit, moving the seat tube out of the way of the wheel/seat stay bridge.

    Being further behind the front axle should reduce the OTB feeling. Just getting lower, would help. Drop your elbows to about the same height as your grips and see how that changes things.

  39. #339
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    I agree. Other arguable points they made:
    - When you lengthen the front end you can shorten the chainstays to negate the effect on wheelbase. Not necessarily true, because chainstays are already short and in many cases can not be shortened enough to make up for the long front ends caused by long reach and slack HTA. The fact is, wheelbases are getting longer.

    - When you keep the wheelbase the same, by having a long front and short rear, it keeps the stability of the bike the same. Not necessarily true. Weight distribution is different, and stability is different. I would make the argument that stability is better with more centered weight distribution.

    I do think it is a good article though.
    I got a flash when reading this, I'm sure not too far in the future, some company invents smaller rear wheel to be able to fine tune riding dynamics by shorter chain stays.


    630mm bar with 50mm stem seemed to be more stable than 720mm bar with 35mm stem, up to point, when speed increased closer to 20mph wider bar was more stable, at very slow speed though, even small weight change at handle bar (look bike or side) made this twitchiness issue, bike steered immediately, where with shorter bar nothing happens.

    Of course put those two bars and stems to some different bike and you might get different results, but until someone sends me proper trail bike frame with fork and shock, I'm limited to experiment with what I have, you just have to interpolate the result or experiment yourself.

    Interesting bit is that it is more relaxed when I hold from bar ends. Of course more rides are needed to properly adjust to change, that was just 24 miles ride I made, speeds from 2mph to 40mph, uphill and downhill, but mostly on dual track and something close to fireroad.
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  40. #340
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    What makes you feel like you're going to go OTB and what actually makes you go OTB are two different things.
    Yeah I get what you mean. In reality I know I'm less likely to go otb with my current setup, it just feels a little wonky. I feel like my bars are in my lap. Again, this is probably due to many miles on a long, stretched out xc bike.

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  41. #341
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    What makes you feel like you're going to go OTB and what actually makes you go OTB are two different things.

    When you run into something that makes you go OTB, it does it because your momentum pushes your CG out past the front contact patch. With the shorter stem and wider bars your hands are a little further back, so it will move your CG a little further back, so your momentum is a little less likely to push you forward enough for it to happen.

    It also makes shifting your weight back easier and makes it feel more natural, since your hands are already a little further back.
    From my short experiment I would agree with all those points, for me also breathing when climbing is better and as bar is wide, it is quite easy to lean very much forward to prevent front end getting too light when climbing.

    When braking rear wheel does not come up quite as easily, with other geometric changes to frame that new geo has, it might be that pulling wheelie comes easier instead of OTB, but without testing hard to say, that is how it appears to me.
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  42. #342
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8iking VIIking View Post
    I've recently switched from 750mm bars and a 70mm stem to 800mm bars and a 50mm stem, and I can't help but feel like I'm gonna go otb because the bars aren't out in front of me enough. Is this just something I have to get used to or is the stem a little too short? Also, weighting the front for turns feels awkward now

    Sent from my SCH-S968C using Tapatalk
    Normally you feel less likely to go otb with a shorter stem, as mentioned above, but I could see if it was too short you could feel like your arms aren't out in front of you as much to resist a forward weight shift.

  43. #343
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    Normally you feel less likely to go otb with a shorter stem, as mentioned above, but I could see if it was too short you could feel like your arms aren't out in front of you as much to resist a forward weight shift.
    Wouldn't that feeling be enhanced by bit short top tube? If top tube would be longer and BB more rearwards, then shorter stem would not have that effect and cramped cockpit feeling, but with short TT handlebar certainly would feel to be on lap and rider might feel to go over the bar easier?
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  44. #344
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    It's been going back and forth... 2015 is the SB5c's year.

    WhatMTB/BikeRadar gave it to the Anthem X 29 in '13, I believe, for trail bikes under 2500 GBP. E29 was getting a lot of awards in 14. Tallboy LTc in '12? Bicycling and Outdoor mag seemed to like the SB95.
    The SB5 is kicking butt as far as reviews go. Everyone loves that bike it seems.
    Here's the specs on the medium frame.
    Chainstay - 17.4 (442)
    TT - 23.7 (601)
    HTA - 66.5 (with 150 fork)
    STA - 72.3 (410)
    reach - 16.14 (410)
    BB - 13.5 (344)
    Wheelbase - 45.6 (1159)
    Stock stem - 70mm

    Looks pretty modern to me, but some of you guys argue like there are all kinds of problems with that geometry. There is more than 1 way to build an awesome bike, and its hard to argue that Yeti didn't get it right with the SB5. Draw your own conclusions.

  45. #345
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    Quote Originally Posted by grumpy old biker View Post
    Wouldn't that feeling be enhanced by bit short top tube? If top tube would be longer and BB more rearwards, then shorter stem would not have that effect and cramped cockpit feeling, but with short TT handlebar certainly would feel to be on lap and rider might feel to go over the bar easier?
    Absolutely. We don't know his bike, we just know that he feels more likely to go otb with his new shorter stem. So its possible that it is too short. And you can't really call a top tube long or short unless you are referencing the riders body in comparison. His position, due to the combination of his frame with his stem, may put him too up right or cramped.

  46. #346
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    Absolutely. We don't know his bike, we just know that he feels more likely to go otb with his new shorter stem. So its possible that it is too short. And you can't really call a top tube long or short unless you are referencing the riders body in comparison. His position, due to the combination of his frame with his stem, may put him too up right or cramped.
    The bike is a large santa cruz Bantam, 610 TT, 419 reach. I'm 5'10" with a 33" inseam. At my height I'm exactly between SC's recommendation for M/L

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  47. #347
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    The SB5 is kicking butt as far as reviews go. Everyone loves that bike it seems.
    Here's the specs on the medium frame.
    Chainstay - 17.4 (442)
    TT - 23.7 (601)
    HTA - 66.5 (with 150 fork)
    STA - 72.3 (410)
    reach - 16.14 (410)
    BB - 13.5 (344)
    Wheelbase - 45.6 (1159)
    Stock stem - 70mm

    Looks pretty modern to me, but some of you guys argue like there are all kinds of problems with that geometry. There is more than 1 way to build an awesome bike, and its hard to argue that Yeti didn't get it right with the SB5. Draw your own conclusions.
    I would argue that yeti couldnt make the rear shorter due to the suspension design and therefore made the front a bit shorter.

    My lokal yeti dealer and a shop owner is 5'8" and rides a large. He also advises his customers to upsize on the 5c, not on the 6c though, which is a longer bike...
    He also rides a large Ibis Ripley and L HD3.
    Large Nomad 3 is about the size of a medium 6c.
    I see most people between sizes going with a larger 5c frame.

    The problem with some designs, HD3 for example is the long seat tube, which basically makes the upsizing more difficult.
    The ST lenght increases about 2.5x more than the reach... going from M to L...

  48. #348
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    but I could see if it was too short you could feel like your arms aren't out in front of you as much to resist a forward weight shift.
    Yes! This is what I was trying to convey...

    I think some of this is compounded by the stock 0 offset seatpost. When seated I feel too far forward. I need more setback with a 73 degree STA, so a dropper with some setback is next on my list

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  49. #349
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8iking VIIking View Post
    The bike is a large santa cruz Bantam, 610 TT, 419 reach. I'm 5'10" with a 33" inseam. At my height I'm exactly between SC's recommendation for M/L

    Sent from my SCH-S968C using Tapatalk
    It seems like it should fit pretty well with the 50, especially since you went with 50mm wider bars. You probably just have to get used to it. It might be a visual thing. Seeing that short stem out front affecting you psychologically

  50. #350
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzanova View Post
    I would argue that yeti couldnt make the rear shorter due to the suspension design and therefore made the front a bit shorter.

    My lokal yeti dealer and a shop owner is 5'8" and rides a large. He also advises his customers to upsize on the 5c, not on the 6c though, which is a longer bike...
    He also rides a large Ibis Ripley and L HD3.
    Large Nomad 3 is about the size of a medium 6c.
    I see most people between sizes going with a larger 5c frame.

    The problem with some designs, HD3 for example is the long seat tube, which basically makes the upsizing more difficult.
    The ST lenght increases about 2.5x more than the reach... going from M to L...
    What up sizing seems to end up with is a long travel and slack XC bike, except the wheelbase is MUCH longer. That makes is less of an all mountain or trail bike and more of a dedicated enduro race bike that isn't as suitable for typical riding. It would be stable, no doubt about it, but too much so.

    If you want a long and low Nomad, get a Nomad, not a Yeti.

    Kinda curious if actual pro enduro racers up size. Somehow, I think they follow the manufacturer's recommendations.

  51. #351
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    What up sizing seems to end up with is a long travel and slack XC bike, except the wheelbase is MUCH longer. That makes is less of an all mountain or trail bike and more of a dedicated enduro race bike that isn't as suitable for typical riding. It would be stable, no doubt about it, but too much so.

    If you want a long and low Nomad, get a Nomad, not a Yeti.

    Kinda curious if actual pro enduro racers up size. Somehow, I think they follow the manufacturer's recommendations.
    Some usually use 2 sizes based on the application.
    Ibis rider Jeff Kendall Weed rides medium and large HD3. He is around 5'8". All the videos and photos of him I have seen, he was on large with short stem.
    Ibis recommends large from 5'9".
    The same case with Lopes when he used to ride for them.

    The thing is, one brand bike medium could easily be anothers large or XL in regards to TT/reach/WB...
    So it seems there isnt really only one proper way, and one can go out of the recommended manufacturer size.

  52. #352
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzanova View Post
    I would argue that yeti couldnt make the rear shorter due to the suspension design and therefore made the front a bit shorter.

    My lokal yeti dealer and a shop owner is 5'8" and rides a large. He also advises his customers to upsize on the 5c, not on the 6c though, which is a longer bike...
    He also rides a large Ibis Ripley and L HD3.
    Large Nomad 3 is about the size of a medium 6c.
    I see most people between sizes going with a larger 5c frame.

    The problem with some designs, HD3 for example is the long seat tube, which basically makes the upsizing more difficult.
    The ST lenght increases about 2.5x more than the reach... going from M to L...
    Looks like there's well over 1/2" room in there. It's more likely that they didn't want to compromise seating position across a large range by offsetting the seat tube and bending it, due to tire contact with the seat tube at bottom out. They don't need that flap of carbon behind the SI rails. I think they just basically filled it to make use of every mm that had that could reach the level of rigidity they wanted, without much weight.

    I thought the small SB6c felt more natural under me at 5' 7". It was landing stuff really calmly, like a gymnast, kicking out long leaping strides downhill like a gazelle; its suspension was phenomenal. The 5c felt like it was a hurdler, sticking out its leg in front in case it didn't cleanly clear a hurdle, leaving the rear/trailing leg to take some heavy impacts. I really liked the 6c, but it was too heavily built and made my XC trails feel waaaaay too easy, making me look for lines that actually could challenge it. Actually, that overkill feel is how every excellent suspension tune made my XC trails feel, even if it had 5" of travel. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewp5vYQohCg

  53. #353
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    So viewing these threads ("New vs. Old", "Why the damn long stems", etc) I'm noticing somewhat of a trend and am wondering if I'm reading it right or if I'm whacked. The way I see it these designs are somewhat biased towards the enduro crowd, in other words riders who do the climbs begrudgingly in order to get to the "fun part". Not necessarily hating or dreading climbing but more of an attitude along the lines of just getting them over with.

    My favorite kind of trail is sort of like a roller coaster ride, which I used to think of it as flow until that term got bastardized, long climbs followed by equally long descents just don't do it for me. As much as I enjoy downhills, and as masochistic as it might seem I enjoy the climbs & tech a just as much, and therefore equally value a bikes performance in both regards. Maybe the "new geo" is every bit as good on the ups too, I'm not flush enough to find out just yet, but the "old school" xc geo I have now is nothing but fun for me and the type of riding I like.

  54. #354
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I'm noticing somewhat of a trend and am wondering if I'm reading it right or if I'm whacked. The way I see it these designs are somewhat biased towards the enduro crowd, in other words riders who do the climbs begrudgingly in order to get to the "fun part".
    Yes and no, IMO. Bikes like the SB5 or Transition Scout obviously have geometry that is designed to rip on the downhills, but in reality how much do they really give up in the climbing over a similar bike of a few years ago with "oldschool XC" geometry?
    That kind of bike is the obvious choice for the "enduro crowd", but the average guy who doesn't attack the downhills like Jared Graves is still going to benefit greatly from the additional confidence (and margin for error) of the DH-oriented geometry. And if they the bike builders can give that without greatly sacrificing the climbing ability of the bike then why not?

  55. #355
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    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post
    Yes and no, IMO. Bikes like the SB5 or Transition Scout obviously have geometry that is designed to rip on the downhills, but in reality how much do they really give up in the climbing over a similar bike of a few years ago with "oldschool XC" geometry?
    They give up quite a bit on some climbs, actually. You need to run a platform shock more often, because your weight is biased towards the back, and tight climbs are more difficult, as well. Again, it's still a compromise.

  56. #356
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    So viewing these threads ("New vs. Old", "Why the damn long stems", etc) I'm noticing somewhat of a trend and am wondering if I'm reading it right or if I'm whacked. The way I see it these designs are somewhat biased towards the enduro crowd, in other words riders who do the climbs begrudgingly in order to get to the "fun part". Not necessarily hating or dreading climbing but more of an attitude along the lines of just getting them over with.

    My favorite kind of trail is sort of like a roller coaster ride, which I used to think of it as flow until that term got bastardized, long climbs followed by equally long descents just don't do it for me. As much as I enjoy downhills, and as masochistic as it might seem I enjoy the climbs & tech a just as much, and therefore equally value a bikes performance in both regards. Maybe the "new geo" is every bit as good on the ups too, I'm not flush enough to find out just yet, but the "old school" xc geo I have now is nothing but fun for me and the type of riding I like.
    Which is why the discussion should be focused on XC bikes, since they're a constant.

    Even doing that, there's no denying that XC has dropped old ideas and used the lessons learned in gravity disciplines. They didn't do it to hurt climbing ability, they did it to expand the capabilities of the bike.

    Know what bike has something close to the NORBA standard 71/73 angles? A Trek Domane...an endurance road bike.

    Trying to keep it as apples to apples as much as possible, a Cannondale 29'er HTs have gotten .5deg slacker, chainstays have shortened, front center has increased, BB height is unchanged, and wheelbase has increased by .6" between 2008 and today.

  57. #357
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    Enduro is the same as what mountain biking is to many people, just turned into a race. That's just the reality of it, just like the ironic reality that the bike that is most likely to be a quiver-killer for someone is merely any decent all-rounder bike that costs so much that they can't afford to own another bike.

    I prefer to descend something more challenging than what I climbed up, sampling a few different parts of the area, to keep the experience rather fresh. Enduro does the same, but times the DH parts, adds up all the times, and compares the results to other riders. The Enduro-specific bikes are optimized for such. There was actually an Enduro held in my area, on the same trails I ride. I went from being in the 80th percentile, to the 66th percentile on the segments for it, but I'm not bent on trying to improve that. If it goes up, then I consider that merely progress, though it is interesting to seeing how locals actually stack up well vs the pros. If it improves due to a new bike purchase, that just diminishes any regrets I had about the purchase, more than it justifies it or act as reason to buy new stuff in the first place.

    Enduro racing does what racing does for other disciplines, which tests the limits of the competitors, their gear, and their preparation. I'm not interested in the same bike they're riding, as they're more likely tuned for getting business done than for pleasure, but I am interested in what's proven to work well for them, to see if I can maybe use it to improve my own setup. If Enduro racing happens to push the innovation of the bikes I like to ride, that's cool with me. Heck, if e-bikes had racing, maybe they will have their innovation mature to a point that maybe they might change some peoples' minds about them.

    I really hope there's something better than the long front and short rear trend, since my biggest peeve with it is how the rear wheel is much more prone to taking a terrible beating (and flatting, even with tubeless) with the rearward weight balance being like that. Maybe I'm just spoiled by having been on a balanced bike with excellent suspension, which actually made the trails boring since it made things so easy... the Yeti SB5c was a decent in-between compromise, if I downsized to get the front shorter. Don't need to be long to have a Greg Minnaar style, nor be short to have an Aussie/NZ style (Blenki, Atkinson, Hill, etc.)... maybe something in between for a Loic Bruni style.
    Last edited by Varaxis; 08-14-2015 at 11:41 AM.

  58. #358
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    They give up quite a bit on some climbs, actually. You need to run a platform shock more often, because your weight is biased towards the back, and tight climbs are more difficult, as well. Again, it's still a compromise.
    I don't think that this is true. The steeper STA keeps your weight centred when seated and whether or not the platform is needed is more dependent on the suspension design. On my Warden the climb switch is only used on roads and my old 5 Spot with 160mm fork and slacker STA never needed it. My weight was more rearward on the Spot, but it's very efficient DW suspension never bobbed. As for climbing, the Warden does very well on tight switchback climbs I think because of the steep STA and the amazing traction it has. My brief spin on a SB5 demonstrated very good efficiency and it is what I would class as a do everything mountain bike. Bikes in that class, that can climb and descend extremely well capture the essence of mountain biking.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  59. #359
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    If Enduro racing happens to push the innovation of the bikes I like to ride, that's cool with me.
    Exactly this. The enduro format runs the gear many of us have through the crucible of world-class racing and development in a format that corresponds to the way many people ride. No waiting for trickle-down from DH or XC innovations. We're seeing the results already: geometry evolving in a certain way, and market growth in high-performance mid-travel suspension, and grippy but fast and lighter (than DH) tires.

  60. #360
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    I don't think that this is true. The steeper STA keeps your weight centred when seated and whether or not the platform is needed is more dependent on the suspension design. On my Warden the climb switch is only used on roads and my old 5 Spot with 160mm fork and slacker STA never needed it. My weight was more rearward on the Spot, but it's very efficient DW suspension never bobbed. As for climbing, the Warden does very well on tight switchback climbs I think because of the steep STA and the amazing traction it has. My brief spin on a SB5 demonstrated very good efficiency and it is what I would class as a do everything mountain bike. Bikes in that class, that can climb and descend extremely well capture the essence of mountain biking.
    Seat tube angle is practically irrelevant, assuming your seat is properly set up with your knee above the pedal spindle.

  61. #361
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    I don't think that this is true. The steeper STA keeps your weight centred when seated and whether or not the platform is needed is more dependent on the suspension design. On my Warden the climb switch is only used on roads and my old 5 Spot with 160mm fork and slacker STA never needed it. My weight was more rearward on the Spot, but it's very efficient DW suspension never bobbed. As for climbing, the Warden does very well on tight switchback climbs I think because of the steep STA and the amazing traction it has. My brief spin on a SB5 demonstrated very good efficiency and it is what I would class as a do everything mountain bike. Bikes in that class, that can climb and descend extremely well capture the essence of mountain biking.
    Perhaps you and I have different definitions of what climbing "well" means; I've yet to ride a bike with more than 130mm that didn't bob unless the shock was aired up so high that it wasn't getting full travel, ever.

    Most "enduro" bikes climb like pigs. But, they aren't designed for fast climbing. They are designed to get you there at a steady pace while you talk to your buddies. Fire road climbs, slowly. Nothing wrong with that, but if you stand up and give it some gas, there will be some serious bobbing. Not efficient.
    Death from Below.

  62. #362
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Perhaps you and I have different definitions of what climbing "well" means; I've yet to ride a bike with more than 130mm that didn't bob unless the shock was aired up so high that it wasn't getting full travel, ever.

    Most "enduro" bikes climb like pigs. But, they aren't designed for fast climbing. They are designed to get you there at a steady pace while you talk to your buddies. Fire road climbs, slowly. Nothing wrong with that, but if you stand up and give it some gas, there will be some serious bobbing. Not efficient.
    I dont agree with the broad statement that enduro bikes are good only on fire roads and cant be fast on technical stuff.

    I like some movement on technical climbes and prefer active FS over HT.
    I found HT to loose traction, jump of the rocks and make the climing not very efficient. On smooth stuff a HT will always win. On technical climbs on the other side, not really.
    Of course they are limits but there are suspension systems well know for their traction capabilities. Evil's DELTA, Knolly's 4bar...

    But I agree, if an enduro bike is setup to be plush and ones you get over 6" of rear travel it will start slowing climbing. Enduro bikes are also going to be about 3lbs heavier than a 4-5" trail bike.

  63. #363
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Perhaps you and I have different definitions of what climbing "well" means; I've yet to ride a bike with more than 130mm that didn't bob unless the shock was aired up so high that it wasn't getting full travel, ever.
    I guess that's what I'm wondering, is there anyone riding these enduro style rigs who see a climb coming up and say to themselves "alright, I'm going to hit this $hiz!" I realize I'm in the minority but I do that fairly regularly and I just can't imagine a slack angle, long travel bike inspiring those same thoughts like my peppy little 100mm hardtail does.

    No disrespect to enduro fans, I do appreciate the technological advances that riding style inspires.

  64. #364
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    100 or 140mm travel, crazy bob or no bob, if you have suspension, it's going to be less efficient if you don't adjust your technique.

    Just because one design bobs less despite your sloppy technique, doesn't mean more of your power is turning the wheel. Masking the "feedback", suspension bob in this case, that would normally tell you how much power is going into the suspension is akin to you punching a punching bag extremely hard, versus you punching a wall extremely hard. If you're using the pain in your fist as a sign of how hard you punched, are you going to think you didn't punch the punching bag very hard, since it wasn't as painful?

    Don't forget that there's even different feedback feels from a variety of hardtails that people use to explain how much faster and "efficient" one feels over another.

  65. #365
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I guess that's what I'm wondering, is there anyone riding these enduro style rigs who see a climb coming up and say to themselves "alright, I'm going to hit this $hiz!" I realize I'm in the minority but I do that fairly regularly and I just can't imagine a slack angle, long travel bike inspiring those same thoughts like my peppy little 100mm hardtail does.
    I do that a lot actually, if I have enough gas in the tank I'll gun it into every technical climb. With suspension to take care of traction, I can and do attack them harder and faster than I do on my hardtail. But only if it's technical, if it's some boring gravel or doubletrack dirt climb I'll just save my energy and spin it out while on a hardtail I'll occasionally attack the smooth climbs to get the boring crap over with as fast as I can. Assuming I have enough gas in the tank.

    I've ridden hardtails until this year, and if my back holds up I'll be riding them for the rest of my life. There's no doubt that my 24.5 lbs hardtail is faster and more snappy on smooth boring climbs or smooth boring flat stuff. But on everything else, my enduro bike, which is about 6 lbs heavier is significantly faster, smoother, and more fun. Even on the tighter twisty trails where I expected my hardtail to have a sizable advantage, the enduro bike was faster since it could carry more speed through every corner. Timed video runs showed that the only place where the hardtail was making time were the narrow tree gaps where I had to slow down on the enduro bike to tilt the bars through.

    With that said, there's no doubt that my hardtail is faster on a typical XC race course, I have the timed runs to prove it. However, those race courses are IMO, smooth boring crap that I don't enjoy riding, so I couldn't care less which bike is better there.

  66. #366
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Perhaps you and I have different definitions of what climbing "well" means; I've yet to ride a bike with more than 130mm that didn't bob unless the shock was aired up so high that it wasn't getting full travel, ever.

    Most "enduro" bikes climb like pigs. But, they aren't designed for fast climbing. They are designed to get you there at a steady pace while you talk to your buddies. Fire road climbs, slowly. Nothing wrong with that, but if you stand up and give it some gas, there will be some serious bobbing. Not efficient.
    Lockouts on the fork and shock?

  67. #367
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    100 or 140mm travel, crazy bob or no bob, if you have suspension, it's going to be less efficient if you don't adjust your technique.

    Just because one design bobs less despite your sloppy technique, doesn't mean more of your power is turning the wheel. Masking the "feedback", suspension bob in this case, that would normally tell you how much power is going into the suspension is akin to you punching a punching bag extremely hard, versus you punching a wall extremely hard. If you're using the pain in your fist as a sign of how hard you punched, are you going to think you didn't punch the punching bag very hard, since it wasn't as painful?
    If it has no bob, doesn't that mean the rear triangle is not changing relative to the front? Isn't it equivalent to a hard tail?

    Also, if the efficiency loss from the rear tire losing traction through reduced contact with the ground because a hard tail has no suspension is greater than the loss of efficiency in a suspension system that would keep a rear tire in good contact with the ground,a hard tail will be more inefficient.

    I not sure what suspension has to do with punching things.
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  68. #368
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    Quote Originally Posted by IPunchCholla View Post
    If it has no bob, doesn't that mean the rear triangle is not changing relative to the front? Isn't it equivalent to a hard tail?

    Also, if the efficiency loss from the rear tire losing traction through reduced contact with the ground because a hard tail has no suspension is greater than the loss of efficiency in a suspension system that would keep a rear tire in good contact with the ground,a hard tail will be more inefficient.

    I not sure what suspension has to do with punching things.

  69. #369
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    IPunchCholla - good points
    Varaxis -?

  70. #370
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    Just stupid.

    Edit: because when I first read your post I thought you were saying regardless of travel or bob they are less efficient than hardtails. Which I would dispute. But now rereading it, I realized that was an assumption on my part. I have no idea what they are less efficient than. It could be they are less efficient when ridden with the wrong technique, which I wouldn't dispute at all, since it would seem to follow, by definition. But now on my fourth read I think your point may be that some suspension designs feel more efficient than they really are, which is probably true, but sorta pointless since we are unlikely to be able to establish actual efficiency of a design much less how efficient it feels and then compare the two. But I'm probably wrong about that. I do know that punching a wall will hurt more than punching a punching bag, United I use flawless technique on the wall and really poor technique on the bag, in which case punching the wall might not hurt at all and I might break my hand on the bag.

    All I know for sure is that I didn't understand your post (or I did but did a terrible job debating it) so yeah. Stupid. Of course, now I'm trolling, I think.
    Last edited by IPunchCholla; 08-14-2015 at 10:12 PM.
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  71. #371
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    IPunchCholla - good points
    Varaxis -?
    Which points are good?

  72. #372
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    For me climbiness is the bikes ability to climb steep slopes. The steeper it can handle, the better climber it is. I rate pedaling efficiency separately.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  73. #373
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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    With that said, there's no doubt that my hardtail is faster on a typical XC race course, I have the timed runs to prove it. However, those race courses are IMO, smooth boring crap that I don't enjoy riding, so I couldn't care less which bike is better there.
    I find smooth boring crap can actually be kind of fun if you hit it with a good dose of speed. Chunky tech is awesome too. Whatever's in the way.

    I haven't video timed my runs yet but I'm pretty sure they rock.

  74. #374
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    For me climbiness is the bikes ability to climb steep slopes. The steeper it can handle, the better climber it is. I rate pedaling efficiency separately.
    Are you saying bikes that are the best at handling ultra-steep climbs are also best suited for steep downhills? Or are they two separate entities?

  75. #375
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    Since I got my Remedy, I have learned that pedaling efficiency and suspension bob don't mean squat when you're pedaling through chunk and gravel up an 8% grade. I'm saving so much energy not bouncing off of every rock and having to hover over the seat for miles on end.

    It's all just horses for courses anyway.
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  76. #376
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I find smooth boring crap can actually be kind of fun if you hit it with a good dose of speed.
    Yeah. With a motorcycle.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Are you saying bikes that are the best at handling ultra-steep climbs are also best suited for steep downhills? Or are they two separate entities?
    I'd say that certain characteristics of bikes that are great at downhills also make them great for super steep climbs, provided that you can put the power down. Having a good amount of high quality suspension travel along with a longer wheelbase is great for steep climbs, especially if they're rough.

    The suspension setups on most shorter travel bikes are tuned more for efficiency than optimum bump absorption, plus there's less travel so the suspension is firmer. The shorter wheelbase also makes it harder to find the balance point between keeping traction at the rear wheel and looping out the front. As a result, it doesn't hold traction as well on steep rough uphills as an enduro bike, that is, assuming you can keep the cranks turning.

    Going back to my personal bikes, there's nothing I can climb on my hardtail that I can't climb on my enduro bike. However, there's steep gnarly climbs that I can make consistently on my enduro bike which I can clear only 1 out of 5 tries or so on my hardtail.

  77. #377
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    Which points are good?
    If you think there is the same energy loss from a bike that is bobbing and a bike that is not, then where is the energy going?

    In the punching bag analogy, the bag or the wall is the pedal. You apply the same force to both but with the bag the force is dissipated as energy lost by squishing the guts of the bag. Would you rather have punching bags or walls for your pedals?

  78. #378
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    You seem to understand damping, yet haven't put it together yet with suspension.

    There's also the anti-squat effect. If you're wheeling a hand truck forward with a kid bouncing up and down on it, and you are keeping it from bobbing to and fro, do you not count the energy you are using to hold it level as expended energy?

    What if a carbon crank flexes, and absorbs the energy? Is that better than an alloy crank that flexes the same amount but springs the energy back at the bottom of the stroke?

    If in a drag race, a car sprinted off the line and got 0-60 in 4 seconds and crossed the line for a 1/4 mile in 14.500 seconds, and another car did 0-60 in 4.4 seconds and crossed the line in 14.500 seconds, is the first car faster? Are they the same speed?

    Point is, you're using the wrong indicators to determine efficiency and ignoring a lot of other factors. A bike is more efficient if you get a faster result for the same energy expenditure or effort output. If you narrow that down to pedaling efficiency, you now have a bunch of different definitions to consider. Do you mean pedaling with a lower rate of bob, or more pedaling force going into turning the wheel, or something else entirely?

    How many inefficiencies can you spot on your bike? Bearings, tires, and things that see significant force like your crank, are obvious. Suspension too, if it has it. How about the geometry? If it's forcing you to move around a lot more to handle the terrain, is that less efficient geo? You can go in depth big time, with type of grease used, how much the bearings slip instead of spin, the level of contact the seals make, the non-radial loads that the bearings take, the o-rings/seals inside the suspension and their stiction. Same with the geo... if you're riding a super short rear end FS bike with a long front, and need to get out of the saddle for bumps, else get bucked and/or risk rim strike, is that more efficient than a FS bike that doesn't buck you as much when the rear wheel goes over the bump, having just dropped the elbows and let the front come up to compensate for the front popping up more due to a shorter front? How many inefficiencies can you spot in your technique? If your body is bobbing up and down when pedaling out of the saddle, is that less efficient than if you pedaled with your body maintaining a more level "altitude"? What if you were leaned forward more, would that make it easier to spin faster out of the saddle with less bobbing?

  79. #379
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    What if a carbon crank flexes, and absorbs the energy? Is that better than an alloy crank that flexes the same amount but springs the energy back at the bottom of the stroke?
    Depends from how much heat is released in either case.
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  80. #380
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    If you think there is the same energy loss from a bike that is bobbing and a bike that is not, then where is the energy going?
    Hyperbole?

    edit: Sorry, got it now. Pages and pages of hyperbole.
    Last edited by Zowie; 08-16-2015 at 08:55 AM.

  81. #381
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Perhaps you and I have different definitions of what climbing "well" means; I've yet to ride a bike with more than 130mm that didn't bob unless the shock was aired up so high that it wasn't getting full travel, ever.

    Most "enduro" bikes climb like pigs. But, they aren't designed for fast climbing. They are designed to get you there at a steady pace while you talk to your buddies. Fire road climbs, slowly. Nothing wrong with that, but if you stand up and give it some gas, there will be some serious bobbing. Not efficient.
    Its all relative, the bike you think climbs well, I would probably feel like it handles poorly on the descents. There is always going to be a trade off, when people talk about the latest crop of enduro bikes "climbing well" they don't mean compared to a light weight dedicated XC bike..

  82. #382
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    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post
    Its all relative, the bike you think climbs well, I would probably feel like it handles poorly on the descents. There is always going to be a trade off, when people talk about the latest crop of enduro bikes "climbing well" they don't mean compared to a light weight dedicated XC bike..
    in all honestly in technical climbs I would rather have 6 inch slack bike that is long.

  83. #383
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    Me too...

  84. #384
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    I recall when I got my Big Hit (around 2004) going on a XC type ride with a real mix of riders, from rigid bikes, first timers, XC and DH riders.
    I was the only one that was able to clear a very loose, very steep slope. A combination of tremendous grip (2.5 tires), a lot of travel, granny ring and determination.

    Would I ride something like that (40lbs!) all the time? No way. But there was no way to spin out on that sucker.
    I think the debate in geometry is interesting, it doesn't feel like there has been that much of an evolution for me (Enduro SX from 2005) to my current Enduro. The biggest difference for me is that the bike I have now is as capable of any descending as my older bikes, but is 3kg lighter.
    Who doesn't enjoy a lighter bike? Easier ups, and just as capable going down.

  85. #385
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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    I'd say that certain characteristics of bikes that are great at downhills also make them great for super steep climbs, provided that you can put the power down. Having a good amount of high quality suspension travel along with a longer wheelbase is great for steep climbs, especially if they're rough.

    The suspension setups on most shorter travel bikes are tuned more for efficiency than optimum bump absorption, plus there's less travel so the suspension is firmer. The shorter wheelbase also makes it harder to find the balance point between keeping traction at the rear wheel and looping out the front. As a result, it doesn't hold traction as well on steep rough uphills as an enduro bike, that is, assuming you can keep the cranks turning.

    Going back to my personal bikes, there's nothing I can climb on my hardtail that I can't climb on my enduro bike. However, there's steep gnarly climbs that I can make consistently on my enduro bike which I can clear only 1 out of 5 tries or so on my hardtail.
    I think you're missing the point. A bike that is designed for more efficiency going downhill will not be more efficient on a climb than a bike designed for climbing. Maybe on a super loose, bumpy climb where getting weight over the back wheel helps traction and the suspension absorbs the bumps, but in general, climbing and descending present very different design challenges. Yes, you can ride a slack, low, rear wheel weighted enduro bike up about any climb you have the power and skills for, but it won't be as fast or efficient on most climbs as a steep, front wheel weighted cross-country bike. Just common sense, really. If you have trouble clearing a climb on your hardtail, it probably has more to do with your tires or talent.

  86. #386
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    I've yet to see a 22lb 6" bike. Let alone one with suspension kinematics that would rival an XC bike. I've ridden all over the country, and I've yet to find a place where XC tires and bike wouldn't be the fastest setup, up any hill.

    Never seen an uphill KOM on a 6" bike, either. But, I suppose there is some confounding of that particular data.
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  87. #387
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    I've yet to see a 22lb 6" bike. Let alone one with suspension kinematics that would rival an XC bike. I've ridden all over the country, and I've yet to find a place where XC tires and bike wouldn't be the fastest setup, up any hill.

    Never seen an uphill KOM on a 6" bike, either. But, I suppose there is some confounding of that particular data.
    The climbs you've seen probably don't look like this.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OQwF5qff0I

    The person that holds every KOM in that trail system rides a 6" travel bike.

  88. #388
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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    The climbs you've seen probably don't look like this.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OQwF5qff0I

    The person that holds every KOM in that trail system rides a 6" travel bike.
    Let's be honest. The type of bike that a person rides there has nothing to do with whether or not they will clean those rocks. That's bike handling/trials ability. The rider shown was using half of his travel, if that.

    He's also on the brakes as much he's on the pedals. "Climbing", indeed.
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  89. #389
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Let's be honest. The type of bike that a person rides there has nothing to do with whether or not they will clean those rocks. That's bike handling/trials ability. The rider shown was using half of his travel, if that.

    He's also on the brakes as much he's on the pedals. "Climbing", indeed.
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  90. #390
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    A question regarding trail/offset.

    Giant Reign uses 46mm offset pike instead of the regular 42mm.
    It is supposedly 29 lovers combined with 27.5 crown.
    Giant claims it has improved handling, especially in turns, it is less floppy on uphill switchbacks and better on DH turns as well.
    Is this shorter trail fork really that much better on bikes like the Reign (long and slack...)?
    4mm difference...
    Last edited by jazzanova; 08-23-2015 at 07:52 PM.

  91. #391
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzanova View Post
    A question regarding trail/offset.

    Giant Reign uses 46mm offset pike instead of the regular 42mm.
    It is supposedly 650b lovers combined with 29" crown.
    Giant claims it has improved handling, especially in turns, it is less floppy on uphill switchbacks and better on DH turns as well.
    Is this shorter trail fork really that much better on bikes like the Reign (long and slack...)?
    4mm difference...
    Too bad they spec'd that bike with the DPA version, instead of Solo Air... Mech trail is actually one of the most important handling figures a bike designer can tune.

    On a floppy bike with more mech trail, the slower you go, the more you notice how floppy it is. For instance, if you catch up to someone who's taking it easy on a steep singletrack climb and don't want to rub their rear tire, yet don't want to stall, you might just flop side to side overcorrecting the flop and getting rather out of control. The faster you go, the stronger its auto-center effect gets, and the straighter it goes. The flop is still there if you want to steer, but that will likely just cause you to high side (which I demonstrate at 6:04 in this vid), so keeping the steering slight and leaning the bike is the preferred way to turn at high speeds on such a bike.

    On a bike with more offset, mech trail is reduced, and that reduces auto-centering and wheel flop. With that auto-center effect lessened, as well as the wheel flop lessened, you get better control over steering at both low speeds and high speeds. Some auto-centering is desirable, but wheel flop isn't. You can see Jerome Clementz using quite a bit of steering in some of his action videos, like this one.

    Making it easier to go straight at speed, gives the impression of stability, but if you have too much auto-centering, you might be compelled to slow down more than you have to, to steer the bike. As I said before, the faster you go, the straighter it wants to go, and will fight your steering inputs, which a short stem helps to combat (wide bar adds leverage, and stability as well).

    The reason it's floppy is because when you turn the wheel, the front end gets lower, and it wants to continue to drop to its lowest point. Hopefully this diagram helps to illustrate:


    - on the examples on the left, see the where the steering axis line (follows the head tube) hits the tire, and how that point is off the ground? The higher it is off the ground, the floppier it is. Every mm counts... the reason it's called trail, is because the point that actually touches the ground, trails the steering axis.

    I think the bottom right is most ideal, but susp fork makers need to unlock the offset, else bike designers will just continue to design around what they offer, or not bothering to design since they might be too proud to put out something that feels too compromised. With more offset, you can afford to slack out the front even more.


    - With less trail, there's less risk when turning your front wheel at speed without pretty much guaranteed crashing (more turning range before the wheel flop point). Jerome Clementz probably has his wheel turned about 25 degrees from center in this one, which is something I can do on my XC bike, but not on my bigger bike.

  92. #392
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    I've yet to see a 22lb 6" bike. Let alone one with suspension kinematics that would rival an XC bike. I've ridden all over the country, and I've yet to find a place where XC tires and bike wouldn't be the fastest setup, up any hill.

    Never seen an uphill KOM on a 6" bike, either. But, I suppose there is some confounding of that particular data.
    I have some KOM climbs on a 6 inch travel hardtail .......but yeah although my 6x6 trail bike can be easier up some climbs, my 4x4 XC bike is still the right weapon for climbing. Easier is not really faster in this case.

  93. #393
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    Too bad they spec'd that bike with the DPA version, instead of Solo Air... Mech trail is actually one of the most important handling figures a bike designer can tune.

    On a floppy bike with more mech trail, the slower you go, the more you notice how floppy it is. For instance, if you catch up to someone who's taking it easy on a steep singletrack climb and don't want to rub their rear tire, yet don't want to stall, you might just flop side to side overcorrecting the flop and getting rather out of control. The faster you go, the stronger its auto-center effect gets, and the straighter it goes. The flop is still there if you want to steer, but that will likely just cause you to high side (which I demonstrate at 6:04 in this vid), so keeping the steering slight and leaning the bike is the preferred way to turn at high speeds on such a bike.

    On a bike with more offset, mech trail is reduced, and that reduces auto-centering and wheel flop. With that auto-center effect lessened, as well as the wheel flop lessened, you get better control over steering at both low speeds and high speeds. Some auto-centering is desirable, but wheel flop isn't. You can see Jerome Clementz using quite a bit of steering in some of his action videos, like this one.

    Making it easier to go straight at speed, gives the impression of stability, but if you have too much auto-centering, you might be compelled to slow down more than you have to, to steer the bike. As I said before, the faster you go, the straighter it wants to go, and will fight your steering inputs, which a short stem helps to combat (wide bar adds leverage, and stability as well).

    The reason it's floppy is because when you turn the wheel, the front end gets lower, and it wants to continue to drop to its lowest point. Hopefully this diagram helps to illustrate:


    - on the examples on the left, see the where the steering axis line (follows the head tube) hits the tire, and how that point is off the ground? The higher it is off the ground, the floppier it is. Every mm counts... the reason it's called trail, is because the point that actually touches the ground, trails the steering axis.

    I think the bottom right is most ideal, but susp fork makers need to unlock the offset, else bike designers will just continue to design around what they offer, or not bothering to design since they might be too proud to put out something that feels too compromised. With more offset, you can afford to slack out the front even more.


    - With less trail, there's less risk when turning your front wheel at speed without pretty much guaranteed crashing (more turning range before the wheel flop point). Jerome Clementz probably has his wheel turned about 25 degrees from center in this one, which is something I can do on my XC bike, but not on my bigger bike.
    Thanks. Well explained.
    It looks like different offset forks should be used on different bikes. The slacker the bike is and the more travel it has, the more offset should the fork have.

  94. #394
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    You seem to understand damping, yet haven't put it together yet with suspension.

    There's also the anti-squat effect. If you're wheeling a hand truck forward with a kid bouncing up and down on it, and you are keeping it from bobbing to and fro, do you not count the energy you are using to hold it level as expended energy?
    I think that keeping the hand truck from bobbing costs energy and agree that anti squat costs energy, but less energy than than if the hand truck was moving downward with each jump and had to be lifted back to its initial position.

    Trying to quantify the difference in these energy costs has opened a can of worms:

    http://forums.mtbr.com/shocks-suspen...l#post12142315

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    While it's a curious subject, to try and quantify that, it would be just like how Giant quantified 650b vs 26 and 29. People still choose 26 and 29, and people likely will still choose to go HT over FS even if you could convince them that it costs a mere 2W of power on paper. Or even choose a popular big name's FS bike like the Epic or Top Fuel, rather than one the higher anti-squat bikes.

    There may not be much going into anti-squat, due to leverage multiplying forces. If you're holding the hand truck at the top, and the kid's bouncing while holding onto in the middle and standing above its axles, you have more leverage over him and using less energy to counter his. In the end, it's just one isolated factor that's considered an inefficiency, among a long list of inefficiencies. Talking about anti-squat and how much of it you need, could very well be like saying you can save 35g in your hubs, saying it matters a lot since it's rotating weight, and go in-depth to justify shaving weight there, when there's other things to consider, such as trying to shave weight off your body, your shoes, your helmet, your pack, etc., which serve a similar desirable benefit.

    Don't lose sight of the big picture. Another subject is on upsizing and downsizing, and how one might feel unexpected a lot better than the other. There's someone named Dude! on this forum that claims that by downsizing a 29er, after owning the same frame 1 size up, that his impression of it went from hate to love. Is that explainable in any way?

  96. #396
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    There may not be much going into anti-squat, due to leverage multiplying forces.

    There is no free lunch because of 'leverage multiplying'.

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    Did you notice that the manufacturers of the forward geometry bikes dont go with the ultra slack angles?
    At first I thought the main reason was to keep the WB in check, due to the long TT/reach.
    Now I think another and maybe the most important reason is to avoid the floppy front with the steeper HA and since the TT and reach are so long they can still maintain the confidence on steep DH.

  99. #399
    Trail Ninja
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    G2 geo helped 29ers big time. I think Cannondale is trying to take it further, but no one is taking them really that seriously, probably since they don't do DH racing and the Lefty isn't really getting proven in EWS. They got Boobar from RockShox to work their suspension, so it may be a matter of time.

  100. #400
    Perpetual n00b
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    G2 geo helped 29ers big time.
    This. My Remedy 29 doesn't feel like a classic geo 29er at all. I think it feels more nimble than my Trance 27.5, with the added benefit of less rolling resistance.
    The leg bone's connected to the Cash Bone!

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