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  1. #1
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    Modern VS Old Geometry

    What is your take on the "new geometry" vs older designs? I'm referring to longer reach, shorter stems, lower bottom brackets, slacker head angles, and steeper seat tube angles.

    I started mountain biking in 87 and rode pretty much what everyone else did back then. Steep, rigid front end, long stem, narrow bars. Over the years my bikes gradually changed with suspension forks, full suspension, longer travel, shorter stems, and wider bars. I have used stems from 135 to 35mm and bars from 510 to 780mm. I found steep climbing wasn't impacted by going to shorter stems. I discovered 20 years ago the by sliding my saddle forward steep climbs were easier. Finally my new bike has long reach, slack HTA, steep STA and is capable of just about anything while still being fun on XC type trails. If I lived somewhere flatter I may go with less travel but I would stick with the basic setup I have now. That's how I arrived at what I like. Not sure why there aren't more light, short travel bikes. I am interested in the new Canfield EPO, a light carbon 29 hardtail with long reach, slack HTA, steep STA, and a short stem. Light enough for even XC racing but still capable in the AM spectrum.
    Last edited by Travis Bickle; 03-17-2017 at 08:25 AM.
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  2. #2
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    Are we talking 26ers, 650B or 29ers? For me the move in the 29er realm has been good, a definite improvement in providing bikes that the Avg Joe will enjoy riding. 29ers started with people trying to make them handle like 26ers and they went about it all wrong, except for GF, who went the right way of slacker HTAs and greater fork offset to counter. The whole shorter stem/wider bar and longer Reach geo is also a big improvement, to a point for me - say you used to ride a bike using a 120mm stem and 685mm bar and then went to a 70mm stem and 785mm bar, the improvement in being able to control your steering in the roughs, tech stuff is amazing. I used to ride exactly that setup and never associated it with why I had trouble holding lines riding tech, chunky stuff, but once I moved to a 785mm bar and shortened up my stem without doing anything else the change was unreal.

    To me the new geo is a big plus, but some I think take it a bit far. As to the steep STA, not a fan, not in the least, as to me, my saddle needs to be "X" distance behind the BB for me to feel comfortable, I can always slide forward ontop the nose of the saddle when it gets really steep. With todays 74*> STA it's very tough for me to get my saddle far enough back, especially if looking to use a dropper post as there just aren't that many that have setback options. A STA between 72-73* would suit me a lot better and allow me to run a straight post, which would make dropper post selection so much easier.
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  3. #3
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    I got rid of my 25lb Niner SIR9 because I liked my 30lb Kona Honzo so much. (Both are/were single speeds). I am running 720mm wide handlebars (considered short by current standards but the Niner had a 580mm bar), a 50mm stem, Fox DOSS dropper post, and 140mm Reba fork. I really like the new school geometry although I am not a fan of low BBs when climbing rocky and rooty trails because of the constant pedal strikes - the longer than stock fork on the Honzo helps a little bit there.

    What I can't understand is why so many of these supposed new school frames have top tubes that are as short or shorter than my old XC oriented SIR9. Seems like they would be way too cramped if you run a short stem. For example, a large Canfield Nimble 9 has an ETT of only 24 inches while my SIR9 was 24.5 and my Kona is 25 inches.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    What is your take on the "new geometry" vs older designs? I'm referring to longer reach, shorter stems, lower bottom brackets, slacker head angles, and steeper seat tube angles.

    I started mountain biking in 87 and rode pretty much what everyone else did back then. Steep, rigid front end, long stem, narrow bars. Over the years my bikes gradually changed with suspension forks, full suspension, longer travel, shorter stems, and wider bars. I have used stems from 135 to 35mm and bars from 510 to 780mm. I found steep climbing wasn't impacted by going to shorter stems. I discovered 20 years ago the by sliding my saddle forward steep climbs were easier. Finally my new bike has long reach, slack HTA, steep STA and is capable of just about anything while still being fun on XC type trails. If I lived somewhere flatter I may go with less travel but I would stick with the basic setup I have now. That's how I arrived at what I like. Not sure why there aren't more light, short travel bikes. I am interested in the new Canfield EPO, a light carbon 29 hardtail with long reach, slack HTA, steep STA, and a short stem. Light enough for even XC racing but still capable in the AM spectrum.
    I am not sure it could continue to get better. but old geometery still had roots in road biking where people thought you had to be streached out to be fast.

    I think todays bike are faster overall especailly when set up the right way. Tons more fun to actually ride as well. I personally prefer a long enough TT that lets me run a 35mm stem and the seat all the ways forward. for me at 5'9 that number seems to be about 24 to 24.3 inches of ETT lenght.

    As a Kona Honzo owner and fan boy, the EPO looks sick. I like everything about my Honzo Geo and its flat our rocks.

  5. #5
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    Old geo was great for climbing. I now value descending confidence, simply because the downs are funner. New geo all the way now....

    Bars=730mm
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  6. #6
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    I ride a lot of tight, twisty, rocky, rooty, technical, slow trails in addition to the flow trails people like nowadays. A long, low, slack bike is not ideal for many of these trails. I do prefer the shorter stem and wider bars, but that isn't the best setup for some of the super tight trails with trees 2 feet apart. It's all about what and where you ride. I guess most people ride on fast, open trails with less than extra technical climbs, since that is the in thing right now. Different strokes.

    What I don't understand is why seattube angles are changing. You put the seat in the position that puts your knees over the pedal spindles for general riding. Unless you're climbing or descending more than riding flats, why change that? Anything different is harder on your knees and less efficient. What am I missing?

  7. #7
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    I think in more open but rough stuff the new Geo is or sure better. I also think that tree that infer with handlebar should be cut out.

  8. #8
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    I'm far from knowledgeable about bike geometry but I do know that lowering the bottom bracket is a very bad idea. I practice full pedal discipline with all that stutter and half pedals but still get about one pedal strike a year. Often, it tosses me and I bleed a bit. Virtually every hard pedal strike bends the pedal axle slightly and the bearings go bad over the next few rides. A snapping or clicking is the symptom.

    Bikes need MORE, not less clearance on the bottom bracket. Especially full suspension bikes where pedal clearance can go almost to zero when the shocks are compressed.

  9. #9
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    Seat tube angles are changing to put me and maybe some others in a better climbing position. I'm well forward of KOPS now and don't notice any difference on the flats, although it's mostly up or down here, not much flat.

    As for pedal strikes, I have my share but they don't break my pedals or cause crashes. I broke a few old CB spindles but that wasn't from strikes.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  10. #10
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    I'm also not sold that old NORBA geometry hardtails climbed better. I also think that wheel size is a separate issue and that both 650b and clown wheels can benifit. 29er doesn't need as slack a head angle because of the better roll over but otherwise I think the same rules apply.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    As to the steep STA, not a fan, not in the least, as to me, my saddle needs to be "X" distance behind the BB for me to feel comfortable, I can always slide forward ontop the nose of the saddle when it gets really steep. With todays 74*> STA it's very tough for me to get my saddle far enough back, especially if looking to use a dropper post as there just aren't that many that have setback options. A STA between 72-73* would suit me a lot better and allow me to run a straight post, which would make dropper post selection so much easier.
    With you on the steep seat angle. Not a fan either. I'm all for the short chain stay, long top tube, low BB's, slackish HA, and short stem with wide bars, but like the SA to be around 72 or even lower. For me the steep SA puts my feet too far behind me and too much weight on the handle bars. I want my feet in front of me so I can keep my weight on the pedals and center of gravity low. Also, when out of the saddle I keep my arms in the same position regardless of the SA, so the steeper the SA, the further back my feet end up, putting more weight on the bars and less on the pedals especially when pointing the bike down, which is not what I want.
    Luckily there are still a lot of new bikes out there without the steep SA's.
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  12. #12
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    Its funny you bring this up right now. I had a '02 UST Crossmax rim crack 8 years ago and just ran across a replacement rim on ebay last month. I laced it up been riding the '02 hardtail for the last couple of weeks. Old Skool Geo SUCKS. Totally stretched out with no real control, nervous steering, and out of saddle sprints /climbing on the barends puts you so far in front of the front wheel you can get wobbly if you get too aggressive too fast.

    On a positive note V-brakes on a ceramic rim have a lot more power than I remembered.

    As for pedal strikes, when I cracked my 7" travel AM bike I opted for the next frame size up for warranty. My pedal strikes on one trail went from once a ride to 5 times. BB height isn't the only factor. Along with increasing our top tube length we are increasing our wheelbase and I am sure pedals strikes with it.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    Not sure why there aren't more light, short travel bikes.
    I think it's obvious. People buy with their egos and overestimate their riding ability. More travel looks badass and suggests you know what you're doing. I don't, so I bought 120mm which in more than enough for me.

    I don't think it's as clear cut as 'newer geo is better'. You've got to remember that a heck of a lot of other things have changed as well so it's hard to make a clean comparison. Unless you want to bolt a Judy to your bike??

    I think older, simpler bikes felt nimbler and lighter. Maybe less stable but fun.

  14. #14
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    My first bike, a 1987 Schwinn Impact, had a riser stem and tall riser bars, like some hybrids today. That was a very comfy bike. Like a giant bmx.

    The bike I replaced it with in 1997 had a 120mm stem, 560mm bars and a 1.5inch travel fork lol. Definitely a racy position.

    My bike today is kind of in between those two. I have a 23 inch top tube, 70mm stem, 710mm bars. What's nice is that I have far more steering control now and it's easy to change body position for descents, climbs, sprints.

    I recently tried a 600mm bar and man was that thing odd! Bike felt twitchy and I felt my shoulders straining.

    That said, I don't like the all-mountain thing either where bikes ride like choppers with those long tall forks. Must suck on climbs.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    What is your take on the "new geometry" vs older designs? I'm referring to longer reach, shorter stems, lower bottom brackets, slacker head angles, and steeper seat tube angles.

    I started mountain biking in 87 and rode pretty much what everyone else did back then. Steep, rigid front end, long stem, narrow bars. Over the years my bikes gradually changed with suspension forks, full suspension, longer travel, shorter stems, and wider bars. I have used stems from 135 to 35mm and bars from 510 to 780mm. I found steep climbing wasn't impacted by going to shorter stems. I discovered 20 years ago the by sliding my saddle forward steep climbs were easier. Finally my new bike has long reach, slack HTA, steep STA and is capable of just about anything while still being fun on XC type trails. If I lived somewhere flatter I may go with less travel but I would stick with the basic setup I have now. That's how I arrived at what I like. Not sure why there aren't more light, short travel bikes. I am interested in the new Canfield EPO, a light carbon 29 hardtail with long reach, slack HTA, steep STA, and a short stem. Light enough for even XC racing but still capable in the AM spectrum.
    Can't go wrong with the EPO. Absolutely loving mine so far


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  16. #16
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    Well, if you don't have much flats and/or only pedal easy on them, then you won't notice that horrible position, steep STA are made for climbing/descending, not for rolling/flat.
    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    Seat tube angles are changing to put me and maybe some others in a better climbing position. I'm well forward of KOPS now and don't notice any difference on the flats, although it's mostly up or down here, not much flat..
    This guy gets it and that's the reason along with the lower BBs I feel for more pedal strikes/pedal timing needed. I certainly noticed a big drop in that when I switched frames and dropped 2.5" in WB while retaining same BB height.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ratt View Post
    ......... My pedal strikes on one trail went from once a ride to 5 times. BB height isn't the only factor. Along with increasing our top tube length we are increasing our wheelbase and I am sure pedals strikes with it.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorsban View Post

    That said, I don't like the all-mountain thing either where bikes ride like choppers with those long tall forks. Must suck on climbs.
    Absolutely not. My Warden with 160mm fork climbs like a goat being chased by a cougar. You need to demo a few.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  18. #18
    U sayin' Bolt ?
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    What do you think the future holds for new bike geometry?

    Do you think a super telescoping dropper post would open up super short seattubes and super compact suspension designs for FS frames?

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  19. #19
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    Posts with 200mm of drop are out there.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    As to the steep STA, not a fan, not in the least, as to me, my saddle needs to be "X" distance behind the BB for me to feel comfortable, I can always slide forward ontop the nose of the saddle when it gets really steep. With todays 74*> STA it's very tough for me to get my saddle far enough back, especially if looking to use a dropper post as there just aren't that many that have setback options. A STA between 72-73* would suit me a lot better and allow me to run a straight post, which would make dropper post selection so much easier.
    Same here, I like modern geometry and want bike companies to go even lower with BB heights, but a steep STA just don't get along with me. When the STA are at 74* or more it feels like I'm driving myself forward and up off the saddle every time I pedal harder than an easy spin. It's fine for XC where it encourages you to get out of the seat and hammer, but it sucks when I'm trying to stay seated & conserve energy on my long travel bike. My preferred riding position is at or slightly behind KOPS, that's where I'm most comfortable & balanced and waste the least amount of energy holding myself in place.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    Posts with 200mm of drop are out there.
    But you still need a straight 200mm of seattube to put them in. Imagine the freedom gained in rider movement and bike design if the post telescoped: A rider could crouch trials low all over the bike, desingers would have more freedom to mangle the seattube for suspension design and tire clearance.

  22. #22
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    I am a fan of modern geo. The Salsa Bucksaw I built in November fits me better than any bike ever has.

    I get a few more pedal strikes than I used to. I don't attribute it to a low BB, though. Wheelbase on this bike is much longer than bikes I've owned previously, so I don't doubt it's a factor. But this bike is also substantially wider, and most of my pedal strikes are due to this extra width at the BB/wider Q. Nothing has caused a crash. Just an occasional scrape of the pedals. Haven't even bent any pins.

    Bike climbs really well, and I don't have to lean forward nearly so aggressively as I used to. I can sit up pretty straight to keep the rear wheel planted and still keep the front end from wandering. I think the really slack/long front end has a lot to do with that. It descends even better. I've bombed down some super chunky downhills since I've owned this bike. Stuff that on previous bikes I would have been super careful about. The geometry plays a big role with that, and I'm also using "just" 720mm bars. Not only is it the most comfortable bike I've owned, it's definitely the most fun.

    And, the bike has only 100mm of suspension travel.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    I think it's obvious. People buy with their egos and overestimate their riding ability. More travel looks badass and suggests you know what you're doing. I don't, so I bought 120mm which in more than enough for me.
    .
    Weird Ive always felt the opposite. I thought more travel/slacker was safer at the cost of climbing efficiency so better for newbies

    As Ive gotten better Ive gone to less travel as I dont need it. Im glad my first bike had 140 and a slack geo as it saved my bacon on tough technical downs many times.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by goodmojo View Post
    Weird Ive always felt the opposite. I thought more travel/slacker was safer at the cost of climbing efficiency so better for newbies.
    Yes, I see what you mean and I guess you're right, if you are doing fairly advanced riding. What i mean is that people buy bikes with big suspension when they ride canal paths and the sorts of trails you can do easily with no suspension at all. They just buy a big, butch looking bike because it looks the part but it's way more bike than they actually need.

    I almost did it myself. I nearly bought a 160mm travel Kona before I came down to earth and realised that I will never do the kind of stuff that requires such a machine.

  25. #25
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    I'm not a huge fan of low BB's my id had a pretty high one and I liked it especially in the rocky tech trails. My epiphany is lower and I had to retrain myself in pedal timing etc. maybe it's just better geometry vs newer in my case but the rest of the feel of the bike is better. I also went to 780mm bars and a shorter stem that felt good too.


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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    Same here, I like modern geometry and want bike companies to go even lower with BB heights, but a steep STA just don't get along with me. When the STA are at 74* or more it feels like I'm driving myself forward and up off the saddle every time I pedal harder than an easy spin. It's fine for XC where it encourages you to get out of the seat and hammer, but it sucks when I'm trying to stay seated & conserve energy on my long travel bike. My preferred riding position is at or slightly behind KOPS, that's where I'm most comfortable & balanced and waste the least amount of energy holding myself in place.
    see Ia m the opposite the farther forward I can get the less I am likely to stand up to pedal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    I am not sure it could continue to get better. but old geometery still had roots in road biking where people thought you had to be streached out to be fast.

    I think todays bike are faster overall especailly when set up the right way.
    That's exactly it, we aren't riding road bikes... and I have a little suspicion that part of the reason road bike geo is what it is due to old material limitations which no longer apply. Road bikes travel 2-3 times faster than MTBs yet they need super steep HTAs? I expect that to be yet another MTB trend to slowly trickle over to road bikes.

    Not only do new geo bikes need to be set up correctly, they need to be ridden correctly. When you do that there is absolutely no loss of maneuverability when compared to steeper bikes, what you do get one hell of a lot of confidence inspiring stability. Everything about new trail/all mountain/enduro geometry is about adding confidence by making the bike more stable.

  28. #28
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    Not only confidence but safety. I think that entry level bike especially need to be slacker up front with shorter stems. This would have saved me a lot of skin when I was starting out.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  29. #29
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    I'm pretty happy about 'new' geometry trend, as someone who is much 'taller' from the waist up than the waist down, for most of my biking life, I've had to choose adequate standover, but a long stem and setback post, or a 'properly short' stem, and virtually zero standover.

    Bikes getting longer via an increased front center/reach is all right by me.

    My bike is a size medium and I love the CS length, the BB height, the slack-ish HTA, and low standover, but the 23.3" ETT is too short for me to have anything less than an 80mm stem. 90 is actually better, but makes the chunky technical stuff scary. I really wish my bike had at least an inch more top tube. 1.5 would be better.

    To get an ETT in the vicinity of 25" like I want, I need a size XL frame in most brands, and an XL frame has a standover befitting someone who is 6" taller than I am.
    I ride with a guy who has an XL Trek Fuel EX9, and with his new 50mm stem, the bike fits me like a glove, but the 'low point' of the TT is like an inch in front of the saddle nose. When I straddle his bike, in the middle of the top tube, 'the boys' are literally resting on the frame. That can't happen.

    Something like a 25" ETT, with a 27-28.5" standover (where the rider actually straddles), short-ish chainstays, a HTA around 67, and a BB about 13.75 would be amazing.
    This would definitely be divergent from the middle of the spectrum geo on most bikes, but I think it's getting closer. nothing like this existed 10 years ago.

  30. #30
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    You're looking at the wrong number, you should be concentrating on REACH, not ETT - As an example I've 2 bikes with the same Reach, but ETT is almost an inch different because of the STA. Not sure what frames you've looked at, but my Banshee FS frames have some of the lowest standover I've come across, so much so that people who would ride a Medium (5'8"ish) have had no issues standing over my XL Prime. What frame are you currently on, and what's the Reach?

    Quote Originally Posted by ARandomBiker View Post
    I'm pretty happy about 'new' geometry trend, as someone who is much 'taller' from the waist up than the waist down, for most of my biking life, I've had to choose adequate standover, but a long stem and setback post, or a 'properly short' stem, and virtually zero standover.

    Bikes getting longer via an increased front center/reach is all right by me.

    My bike is a size medium and I love the CS length, the BB height, the slack-ish HTA, and low standover, but the 23.3" ETT is too short for me to have anything less than an 80mm stem. 90 is actually better, but makes the chunky technical stuff scary. I really wish my bike had at least an inch more top tube. 1.5 would be better.

    To get an ETT in the vicinity of 25" like I want, I need a size XL frame in most brands, and an XL frame has a standover befitting someone who is 6" taller than I am.
    I ride with a guy who has an XL Trek Fuel EX9, and with his new 50mm stem, the bike fits me like a glove, but the 'low point' of the TT is like an inch in front of the saddle nose. When I straddle his bike, in the middle of the top tube, 'the boys' are literally resting on the frame. That can't happen.............
    Last edited by LyNx; 07-05-2015 at 04:58 PM. Reason: Punctuation
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    "... there is absolutely no loss of maneuverability when compared to steeper bikes...
    Absolutely incorrect. You can adjust your riding style to longer, slacker geometry, but it will still be more difficult and slower in tight turns and steep climbs. Tight and twisty trails are a handful on longer, slacker bikes. Of course you can ride them on any trail, but it will be slower.

  32. #32
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    Once a year I take my '98 Cannondale Super V700 out for a spin in the bike park to remind myself how good I have it with modern geometry (and everything else).

    Should be interesting to revisit this thread in 5 years.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    Absolutely incorrect. You can adjust your riding style to longer, slacker geometry, but it will still be more difficult and slower in tight turns and steep climbs. Tight and twisty trails are a handful on longer, slacker bikes. Of course you can ride them on any trail, but it will be slower.
    I do not think most trails even have couple turns where angle like that matter.

    Case in point the tightest twistiest least flowly DH around here that take like 8:00 minutes to go down,I am about :45 to 1:00 min faster on my Slack hardtail then I am on much lighter steep hardtail.

    Slack hardtail has

    140mm fork, 16.3 chainstays, 66 degree headangle, and 24 inch TT with a 35mm stem. weighs 28.0 lb

    Steep hardtail has

    100mm fork, 16,9 chainstays, 71 degree head angle, 23.5 inch TT, with a 80mm stem. weighs 24.5.

    I am also not any slower climbing on the slack hardtail, especially if the climbing is tech in nature.

    Basically what I am saying is my steep hardtail does not inspire confidence so no matter how much theory there is on why it should be faster it all junk, unless I can actually go faster on it.

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    I've used a 40mm stem and that was awesome for downhill. But too cramped feeling and twitchy for everywhere else.

    I normally use 60-70mm stems.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    Absolutely incorrect. You can adjust your riding style to longer, slacker geometry, but it will still be more difficult and slower in tight turns and steep climbs. Tight and twisty trails are a handful on longer, slacker bikes. Of course you can ride them on any trail, but it will be slower.
    That is the overactive imagination of someone who either hasn't ridden a new geo bike, or refuses to acknowledge that progress tends to make things better.

    There will be a couple inches of difference in the absolute minimum turning radius, but that doesn't really apply to real life riding. You might as well be suggesting that fat tired CX bikes are more suited for mountain biking with their even shorter wheelbases and steeper angles.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    You might as well be suggesting that fat tired CX bikes are more suited for mountain biking with their even shorter wheelbases and steeper angles.
    Uhm...they are. Well if you consider 32mm "fat". I'll ride my cyclocross bike on anything that I'd ride a mountain bike on.

    Not a fan of slack angles or wide bars at all. Stem length I could take or leave as it's a fit thing but would not ride a short stem just because it's the in thing.

    About the only bike I could buy off the rack and ride with minimal changes is a S-works Stumpjumper.
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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by shayne View Post
    uhm...they are. Well if you consider 32mm "fat". I'll ride my cyclocross bike on anything that i'd ride a mountain bike on..
    ooo-kkkkk.......

  38. #38
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    I'm gonna leave the cross bike thing alone, but it did make me laugh as tried to imagine hitting our trails on mine. How about Porcupine Rim or Amasa Back? Maybe Danny Macaskill.

    However stem length effects handling and ones ability to shift weight to where it's needed. If you have to go long just for fit then maybe the frame is too short.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  39. #39
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    Irony: One of the world's best cyclocross racers won the enduro race in Moab in May. On a stock, relatively standard geometry Trek Superfly 100, IIRC. With a 90mm stem and 700mm bars.

    Against a bunch of "pro" enduro "racers" on new geometry bikes.
    Death from Below.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    However stem length effects handling and ones ability to shift weight to where it's needed. If you have to go long just for fit then maybe the frame is too short.
    Correct, and any bike I've ridden with a stem less than ~110mm steers like a wheelbarrow full of watermelons.

    And conversly if one has to go with a short stem maybe the frame is too large.

    Its all subjective. I was just pointing out that aside from custom there are very few bikes available now that I would even bother looking at.
    "New" just doesn't do it for me. It's not comfortable.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Irony: One of the world's best cyclocross racers won the enduro race in Moab in May. On a stock, relatively standard geometry Trek Superfly 100, IIRC. With a 90mm stem and 700mm bars.

    Against a bunch of "pro" enduro "racers" on new geometry bikes.
    Not really, it just shows the talent of that rider relative to the rest of the field. You're making a similar argument to the guys that claim that because some beast kicks ass with a SS, then SS bikes must be better or just as good as geared. It's a silly argument.

    If you gave Barel or Lopes Tomac's bike from the early 90's they'd still kick a bit of ass. But that's simply the whole bike/rider thing coming into play. Let's just say that there's a reason they prefer new bikes to old, and it's the same reason for the rest of us, because the new geo adds confidence and confidence is key to riding well.

    Can a pro kick my ass all day, every day on a super-d or enduro course with them on an xc bike and me on my 6" bike, sure. But then again, would they be faster on appropriate bike? Yes, they would.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    Correct, and any bike I've ridden with a stem less than ~110mm steers like a wheelbarrow full of watermelons.

    And conversly if one has to go with a short stem maybe the frame is too large.

    Its all subjective. I was just pointing out that aside from custom there are very few bikes available now that I would even bother looking at.
    "New" just doesn't do it for me. It's not comfortable.
    That's because there's a relationship between bar width and stem length. Narrow bars need long stems because the narrow bars are slower steering and the long stem is needed to quicken the steering.

    Mix and match and it's not going to work. Seems obvious, or at least it should.

  43. #43
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    I reckon it depends on how you ride.

    New geometry refers to a lot of things that used to be considered downhill oriented, like slack head angles, short stems and wider bars. In the past the assumption was that if you optimized downhill performance, you gave up uphill performance.

    It turns out that these tweeks often times improves downhill performance a lot, with only a little compromise in uphill or slow techy, performance.

    If someone says the new geometry is not that special or doesn't like it, it probably means they never really had a bias towards downhill bombing anyway, and therefore they feel just as, or more, comfortable on an older bike as they do on a new one. And that's ok.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    That's because there's a relationship between bar width and stem length. Narrow bars need long stems because the narrow bars are slower steering and the long stem is needed to quicken the steering.

    Mix and match and it's not going to work. Seems obvious, or at least it should.
    Narrow bars need longer stems because moving your hands inward moves your body back.
    And visa versa.

    I don't think stem length does anything noticeable to steering quickness, except for it's effect on front wheel weighting. That's because long stems move the bar out, but don't change the distance of the hand to the headset much. For example, with an 800 mm bar, your hands are only 9 mm farther from the headset center with a 100 mm stem as with a 50 mm. (Its the hypotenuse). Thats only a 2% difference. Bar width changes matter way more than stem length as far as "quickness" goes.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Irony: One of the world's best cyclocross racers won the enduro race in Moab in May. On a stock, relatively standard geometry Trek Superfly 100, IIRC. With a 90mm stem and 700mm bars.

    Against a bunch of "pro" enduro "racers" on new geometry bikes.
    Two thoughts:

    A good rider is a good rider.

    That "enduro" race was held at Klondike Bluffs.

  46. #46
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    I learned a lot from a 3 day demo on a Nomad 3 this past weekend.
    I am in between sizes on Santa Cruz bikes so I decided to try a large. I have demoed a medium previously.
    I now have a pretty good idea what I want from my next bike geo wise.
    BTW, neither medium or large N3 fit me well.
    I am 5'8.5" with 31.5" inseam.


    1. 800mm bars. Didn't feel wide at all. I run 750 on my current bikes and they feel a bit too narrow now.

    2. Low BB. I am used to it. It requires more work with proper timing, but could be adjusted with a different length cranks.
    I like how nice the bike carves with the weight so low. Obviously, for someone riding ungroomed gnarly trails, this could be a problem.

    3. Steep ST. I am a fan. Nomad has a 74.2 degree ST and I still had my seat all the way forward. Love it on climbs. On flats I didn't find it to be cumbersome.

    4. Long reach. I would like to use a 35-50mm stem, so as long as the reach is around 425mm I am good.

    5. ETT - well this is going to be effected by the STA. As long as the distance from the tip of my seat to the bars is within 1cm from my ideal dimension, I am good.

    6. Slack HA. This depends. The smaller wheel diameter, the slecker it should be. My ideal for my trails and my style of riding is around 66 on a 27.5 bike and 67 on a 29".

    What totally surprised me is how well a slack bike with a 65 degree HT can climb. The front was totally planted. But I believe this was a result of the whole geometry, included steep SA and long WB. The negative was the bikes unwillingness to bunny hop.
    Again, if I was on a medium, this would be a less of an issue.

    7. Wheel base. Now I know 120mm is a bit too much for me. If my all my trails were wide open, than maybe...
    The bike was still plenty agile and only a slightly slower to change direction but on ultra sharp and tight uphill switchbacks was a lot of work. This was emphasized by the slack HT angle as well.
    I think a WB around 116cm would be perfect.

    8. Chain stays. The shorter the better in my book.
    It makes a bike much more agile and playful.
    It also allows for a longer front without making the WB too long.
    17" is the maximum I would tolerate on any wheel size bike.

    9. ST length. This is a major problem with many bikes today. For someone like me in between sizes it could make it difficult to size up if the ST is too long. I like 150mm droppers and bikes like Ibis HD3 in large would not allow me to use one...

    I don't understand why the seat tube going from a medium to large frame has to increase more than 5cm, while the reach increase is less than 2cm?
    It doesn't make sense...

  47. #47
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    New VS Old Geometry

    How does a short stem combined with bars having a long back sweep not suffer from the tiller effect?

    From Wikipedia:

    Tiller effect is the expression used to describe how handlebars that extend far behind the steering axis (head tube) act like a tiller on a boat, in that one moves the bars to the right in order to turn the front wheel to the left, and vice versa. This situation is commonly found on cruiser bicycles, some recumbents, and some motorcycles.[63] It can be troublesome when it limits the ability to steer because of interference or the limits of arm reach.[64]
    Last edited by MikeDee; 07-07-2015 at 07:16 PM. Reason: edit

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    That's because there's a relationship between bar width and stem length. Narrow bars need long stems because the narrow bars are slower steering and the long stem is needed to quicken the steering.

    Mix and match and it's not going to work. Seems obvious, or at least it should.
    Don't you have it backwards??? A longer stem slows steering and shorter bars quicken it. Imagine how far you would have to turn a super looongg stem to make the bike turn. Same with long bars, they give more leverage because you move your hands more to make the same turn.

    Imagine trying to turn 1000mm bars on a 1000mm stem vs 200mm bars on a 30mm stem. Hand movement would do very little on the former vs how much the smallest movement would effect the latter.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeDee View Post
    How does a short stem combined with bars having a long back sweep not suffer from the tiller effect?
    google got nothing.

    so I use a 30mm Stem, with really swept back bar, and 51mm off set fork on my 29er.



    My hands are way behind the front axle. As far as I can tell there are no negatives to this set up assuming the TT lenght is long enough you still have enough room to move. To the guys saying 40mm stems are too short, you have to size up a frame to get make smaller stem work.

    the bike climbs fast and descends faster. Its is by far the faster bike I have ever owned.

    https://www.strava.com/activities/75...nts/1490375765

    I am Josh M.

    for more on the idea.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ulQLAMHQ2Fk

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    Correct, and any bike I've ridden with a stem less than ~110mm steers like a wheelbarrow full of watermelons.

    And conversly if one has to go with a short stem maybe the frame is too large.

    Its all subjective. I was just pointing out that aside from custom there are very few bikes available now that I would even bother looking at.
    "New" just doesn't do it for me. It's not comfortable.

    If you are steering your turns you are going to be slow. There is your problem. The new geometery let you lean the bike over way better than the old stuff.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by knutso View Post
    Don't you have it backwards??? A longer stem slows steering and shorter bars quicken it. Imagine how far you would have to turn a super looongg stem to make the bike turn. Same with long bars, they give more leverage because you move your hands more to make the same turn.

    Imagine trying to turn 1000mm bars on a 1000mm stem vs 200mm bars on a 30mm stem. Hand movement would do very little on the former vs how much the smallest movement would effect the latter.
    Right.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by knutso View Post
    Don't you have it backwards??? A longer stem slows steering and shorter bars quicken it. Imagine how far you would have to turn a super looongg stem to make the bike turn. Same with long bars, they give more leverage because you move your hands more to make the same turn.

    Imagine trying to turn 1000mm bars on a 1000mm stem vs 200mm bars on a 30mm stem. Hand movement would do very little on the former vs how much the smallest movement would effect the latter.
    Yup, I was on my phone and must have gotten ahead of myself while tapping away.

  53. #53
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    I'm just glad we have the options. The "new school" geo is working great for me. I'm riding a Canfield EPO (slack HTA, super short CS) and absolutely love it. 780mm bars on a 50mm stem and it's just beautiful, for me at least. What's funny is my bro in law hates it and prefers the steeper angle on his stumpy HT. To each their own which is why I'm glad we have so many options these days


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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeeter97 View Post
    I'm just glad we have the options. The "new school" geo is working great for me. I'm riding a Canfield EPO (slack HTA, super short CS) and absolutely love it. 780mm bars on a 50mm stem and it's just beautiful, for me at least. What's funny is my bro in law hates it and prefers the steeper angle on his stumpy HT. To each their own which is why I'm glad we have so many options these days


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    its called he is used to what he used to.

    Just take him some where where there is a good chance of endoing and watch him suffer.

  55. #55
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    Combining a slacker HTA with a slacker STA and a modest length TT gives you a bike that is both agile on the tight and twisties yet stable on the DH. Great compromise.

    Long TTs with steep STAs make for a long wheelbase and make for nice bombing bikes but are not the most nimble on twisty, pedally single track.


    Depends on your trails.

    Not a fan of the steeper STAs. Not good for pedally trails. Perch you up on the bike too much and put too much weight on my hands. If your trails point only up and down I suppose they'd be ok.

    Wide bars, no question.

    Short chain stays, no question.

    Lower BBs are nice. I can time my pedal strokes. I live in the rocky, pedally NE, and run 180mm cranks.

    Stems, shorter than traditional stems but if too short the front end gets twitchy on slow speed tech.


    That's why I find my Pivot Mach 6 to work so well on all types of trails. It's geo is dialed.

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    Combining a slacker HTA with a slacker STA and a modest length TT gives you a bike that is both agile on the tight and twisties yet stable on the DH. Great compromise.

    Long TTs with steep STAs make for a long wheelbase and make for nice bombing bikes but are not the most nimble on twisty, pedally single track.


    Depends on your trails.

    Not a fan of the steeper STAs. Not good for pedally trails. Perch you up on the bike too much and put too much weight on my hands. If your trails point only up and down I suppose they'd be ok.

    Wide bars, no question.

    Short chain stays, no question.

    Lower BBs are nice. I can time my pedal strokes. I live in the rocky, pedally NE, and run 180mm cranks.

    Stems, shorter than traditional stems but if too short the front end gets twitchy on slow speed tech.


    That's why I find my Pivot Mach 6 to work so well on all types of trails. It's geo is dialed.

    I demoed a M6 and liked many things about it but I could not get the saddle forward enough to get a good position . My warden has 23mm more wheelbase and 31mm more reach and yet still handles the tight sections as well. With the Warden I could get the fit I wanted, but the M6's STA just had me too far back.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  57. #57
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    It took me years to figure out I liked the saddle all the way in the front. Ultra steep stuff is just much easier to do.
    This just tells me not to stay in old ways and try new stuff. One never knows...
    The same with the bars. Just a year ago a 750mm was my upper limit, 2 years ago it was 710mm. Now I find 780-800 to be even better, even though when I tried them about a year ago, they felt too big.

    Riders also progress and most start riding steeper stuff faster. That also changes priorities in desired geometry.

  58. #58
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    I think Evasive hit the nail on the head. After looking at vids of the area and the Official one on PB, an efficient short travel FS would be killer on that course, looks like there's loads of areas a lighter, more efficient bike would be useful, lots of places to pedal and we all know that GF bikes don't use the standard XC geo, their HTA are around 68-69*.

    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Irony: One of the world's best cyclocross racers won the enduro race in Moab in May. On a stock, relatively standard geometry Trek Superfly 100, IIRC. With a 90mm stem and 700mm bars.

    Against a bunch of "pro" enduro "racers" on new geometry bikes.
    Quote Originally Posted by evasive View Post
    Two thoughts:
    A good rider is a good rider.
    That "enduro" race was held at Klondike Bluffs.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    its called he is used to what he used to.

    Just take him some where where there is a good chance of endoing and watch him suffer.
    Ha funny you say that, we just rode some lift assisted "downhill" stuff in Big Bear and he definitely struggled with it.


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  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeeter97 View Post
    Ha funny you say that, we just rode some lift assisted "downhill" stuff in Big Bear and he definitely struggled with it.


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    Yup, he brought a can opener to a gun fight.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    That is the overactive imagination of someone who either hasn't ridden a new geo bike, or refuses to acknowledge that progress tends to make things better.

    There will be a couple inches of difference in the absolute minimum turning radius, but that doesn't really apply to real life riding. You might as well be suggesting that fat tired CX bikes are more suited for mountain biking with their even shorter wheelbases and steeper angles.
    Or it is the experience of a rider who's been mountain biking since 1991 and has owned dozens of bikes and ridden in various states since then. Progress is geared towards the current trails and riding done by the majority of riders. That doesn't mean slower or less precise handling works best for everybody. There are many trails that my XL trail bike struggles to make it through the twisty sections. The wheelbase is a critical dimension on these trails. Of course you give up some stability going fast over rough terrain.

    Your response indicates you have limited bike handling skills and limit your riding to flow trails. Nothing wrong with that, but I bet there are a few cyclocross riders out there that could destroy you on many trails. And yes, I have read your profile. You really must be a lazy rider.

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    Or it is the experience of a rider who's been mountain biking since 1991 and has owned dozens of bikes and ridden in various states since then. Progress is geared towards the current trails and riding done by the majority of riders. That doesn't mean slower or less precise handling works best for everybody. There are many trails that my XL trail bike struggles to make it through the twisty sections. The wheelbase is a critical dimension on these trails. Of course you give up some stability going fast over rough terrain.

    Your response indicates you have limited bike handling skills and limit your riding to flow trails. Nothing wrong with that, but I bet there are a few cyclocross riders out there that could destroy you on many trails. And yes, I have read your profile. You really must be a lazy rider.
    His response suggests nothing of the kind, and he's absolutely right that the difference in absolute turning radius made by an inch or so of wheelbase is pretty small. The way a bike corners and tracks will be much more noticeable than the absolute turning radius. Owning two bikes with 3" difference in wheelbase in a town known for switchbacks drove that home. The tightest ones weren't any more challenging on the longer bike.

    I think the rapid spread of this type of geometry is more driven by the rise of pro-level enduro racing, particularly the EWS, than by hordes of new riders on flow trails. A bike with a long front center relative to the wheelbase needs to be driven, and that's not the way a beginner rides.

  63. #63
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    The "flow" trail has nothing to do with it. Slacker head angles have come from the DH side, wil XC race bikes are closer to road end of the spectrum. I find that me my Warden really shines when the going gets steep and chunky.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    The "flow" trail has nothing to do with it. Slacker head angles have come from the DH side, wil XC race bikes are closer to road end of the spectrum. I find that me my Warden really shines when the going gets steep and chunky.
    Do you think I will be pushing it too much if I go with:

    -1 degree works angleset
    650b wheel
    650b pike 130mm A/C 522mm (21mm more than original geo)

    Bike: 26 blur TRc
    HA 68 with 501mm A/C 130mm 26 fork

    This particular setup is for a lift assisted riding...

  65. #65
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    I think the HTA would be ok but the BB might be pretty high. Can the frame handle what you are going to put it through?
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    I think the HTA would be ok but the BB might be pretty high. Can the frame handle what you are going to put it through?
    The BB is now at 13.4", so it should be fine.
    I am not going to do anything extreme. All trails are groomed. Taking it to Snow Summit.
    I will test it today on my home trails and see if the angleset stays.
    It feels a bit choppy on flats.

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    Don’t laugh, but I tend to buy and ride my bikes for about a decade before I upgrade. My last bike was a Titus Motolite which has that classic old school geometry… high, short, and steep. Well, this was year 10 and I settled on the Ibis HD3. The differences in old school vs. new school geometry became immediately obvious to me and I will say without hesitation that “new school” is the WAY. As great as my Titus was in its day, the HD3 simply spirits me around the trails. The HD3 is better in every single way.

    I’ve tried to rationalize why the Ibis handles so much better given its lower, longer, slacker nature. I’ve concluded that I was brainwashed into believing the opposite was true.

    Also, I think fork offset is not given enough credit for how these lower, longer, slacker bikes handle. As fork offset continues to get subtly longer, it reduces steering trail making these slacker bikes handle more deftly than the HTA would allow you to believe.

    Regards,

    EndUser
    Last edited by EndUser; 07-09-2015 at 04:18 PM.
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    I've got a 2012 Trek Superfly 100 AL Pro. It has G2 geometry. Is this new or old geometry? I've got an old Cannondale F900 hardtail. It is a lot more twitchy than the Trek is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeDee View Post
    I've got a 2012 Trek Superfly 100 AL Pro. It has G2 geometry. Is this new or old geometry? I've got an old Cannondale F900 hardtail. It is a lot more twitchy than the Trek is.
    trek have a longer fork offset, and its better than most XC 29er but still compared to proper low and slack bike there is room for improvement.

    Geometery is not black and white but shades of grey.

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by evasive View Post
    His response suggests nothing of the kind, and he's absolutely right that the difference in absolute turning radius made by an inch or so of wheelbase is pretty small. The way a bike corners and tracks will be much more noticeable than the absolute turning radius. Owning two bikes with 3" difference in wheelbase in a town known for switchbacks drove that home. The tightest ones weren't any more challenging on the longer bike.

    I think the rapid spread of this type of geometry is more driven by the rise of pro-level enduro racing, particularly the EWS, than by hordes of new riders on flow trails. A bike with a long front center relative to the wheelbase needs to be driven, and that's not the way a beginner rides.
    I disagree with just about everything you said, but I won't argue with your personal experience. I'll just say that my experience has been just about the opposite.

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    You guys know you're just a bunch of equipment nerds, right?

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    You guys know you're just a bunch of equipment nerds, right?
    It's probably worse than that. If a research study was funded on the psychology of these the types you speak of, I imagine scientists would say it's a disorder and there are various degrees of severity, with buying fine equipment to please desire being one of the more advanced stages. Once the study is published, the Christians would twist the findings into their perspective, and proclaim things such as addictive pleasure being akin to sin and that the urge to buy gear is the curse, which eventually leads to damnation. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's murdered out ride!

    JK JK

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    You guys know you're just a bunch of equipment nerds, right?
    Guilty.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  74. #74
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    Absolutely. But when you can't test-ride every new bike that comes out having an understanding of bike fit, geometry, and how the changes in certain measurements affect handling is pretty useful. I bought my new bike (Knolly Warden) based on numbers and rider reviews, I'd never even seen one in the flesh. Hopefully in a couple of weeks the build being completeled should coincide with my wrist being good enough to ride again and I'll let you know how I think 2015 "new" geometry feels compared to 2010 "old" geometry (5spot)...

  75. #75
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    I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that it might incriminate myself
    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    You guys know you're just a bunch of equipment nerds, right?
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  76. #76
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    In my defense mtb is a pretty equipment centric lifestyle. If mountain biking is a big part of your life then it stands to reason that you would be interested in the tech aspects.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  77. #77
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    These discussions always make me think of really old bikes.
    Check out that slacked out front end for shredding the gnar...
    New VS Old Geometry-b154.jpg


  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    You guys know you're just a bunch of equipment nerds, right?
    I'm confused.. You say that as if it were a bad thing?

  79. #79
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    New school geo is actually old school, just made new again. For example, that Knolly is very similar to what Spec has been running for a while like on their SJ FSR Evo (26). And before the SJ FSR Evo, was the Pitch, which had geo akin to the latest version of Mondraker forward geo (slightly longer stem on the Pitch). I didn't look into other brands' old bikes, but I know that we've already been there and done that.

  80. #80
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    If memory serves me right the first production mtb's (Stumper/Ritchey} had 67-68 HTA's, and even with all their flaws are still super fun rides IMO. Designs are constantly being refined and improved.

  81. #81
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    Refinement of designs and geo are for the most part just trends, marketing, and/or differentiation to me. I'm more impressed by improvement of tires, suspension, and to a smaller extent, bearings and other things done to eliminate drag, play, flex, etc. I particularly like how some of the big names are getting suspension custom tuned from the likes of Ohlins, Penske, and even Fox and RockShox, rather than picking between what's available.

  82. #82
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    How I picture trendy new school designs - bold color like orange, tall extended front, low, short rear, sporty, but a bit backwards for those actually wanting to go the fastest as they can be, and be versatile and balanced enough to handle a variety of courses:





    What the guys were on from the previous trend - murdered out enduro capable, do-all, mo-carbon mo-bettah, shit be heavy so don't need paint weighing it down too, black ano on the fork and shock stanchions too, short rear and long front is cool, and extra susp travel is cool too for extra comfiness:





    And before that - raw metal, beauty in manufacturing, pro-US, carefully spec'd custom handbuilt wheels (and i9 wheels), accented by ano parts with gold bits being the most bling (zomg Kashima coat), stay away from carbon and stick with trusty metals:





    Alternatively, at the same time, this trend was growing - cruising easy-mode along vast stretches of trail in the US (catching on in South Africa and to a small extent, in Australia), with wild designs that were all over, but that didn't matter because it was the wheel size that got all the attention and credit, and nice bright glossy paint (ex. Niner and Trek) was icing on the cake:


  83. #83
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    Changes to geometry and where that puts the riders weight are more important than a custom tuned shock. My last bike had an RP23, and new one has an Inline. Much better, but I lose interest in it when going down steep chunk. I would rather have a modern geometry hardtail than a steep FS endo machine with a custom tuned shock.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  84. #84
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    The issue lies more in personal preference, especially regarding what people have determined belonged to the "good" side of their good-bad scale, and what they determined to be on the "bad" side of the scale. They rely on familiarity to determine this and find extremely basic patterns to reason why it is good or bad, but when they actually own such a bike and find that 1000 miles later that the bike isn't everything they wanted it to be, they can't admit that their scale is F'd up and blame it on other stuff. Where exactly is weight being put that is bad on these bad designs? Not forward enough on the climbs? Not forward enough in the corners?

    A killer shock tune that provides mega traction and glues itself the the ground, offering more control than you know what to do with, along with a balanced geo that isn't so short in wheelbase nor so bias towards the rear that doesn't buck on either end as much when plowing through the rough, is actually considered to be far on the bad side of the scale. Such high performance is too much performance for these people that are used to their old bikes happily bouncing around off of rocks, popping up with a twang to get minor air time with the slightest weight shift, and feeling the chaos through the feedback in their feet and hands to fuel the thrill they get from being on the edge of control. This kind of high performance often is what creates the feeling over "overkill" on trails below your skill level, at least when not going very fast, and kills the "fun" that these people feel on the stuff they are used to slowing down for. Going fast on the DH while also going as fast on the XC stuff is exactly what they're offering, yet it's considered bad mainly due to a perceived lack of fun factor (also perceived lack of cornering prowess esp in switchbacks, hard to wheelie/manual). A light bike going downhill as fast as more familiar heavier bikes, on top of being short travel... it seems like some don't want to believe it can be that capable, and want some beefier parts and more travel added on just in case.

    How such types prefer virtually no compression damping with their springs, absolutely hate bouncing with their uneven pedaling strokes, want it to be as easy to corner as possible, and want comfort such as killing the feedback the uninteresting things like braking bumps, is a major part of the reason behind why designs are becoming backwards, as the industry tries to make money off of such demands. The kind of parts such people spec like Minion DHF tires, thick stanchion forks, wide rims, underinflated fat tires, thick saddles, extreme stem length change, super wide bars, emphasis on the low end of gearing with pie plate cassette cogs, etc. don't really help with promoting a riding style that works well with the higher performance bikes. They don't realize how crazy such a shock tune is, and the shock tuning experts themselves know that trying to achieve it isn't very wise, yet those with resources try to accept the challenge anyways, hence the birth of DRCV and Re:Aktiv... you get the sensitivity ("even under braking"), use full travel, mid-stroke support, good pedaling platform, and get still great traction, yet it's looked down upon apparently for being complicated or too one-off. Or you can just be like Yeti and custom tune a lowly Fox and use Trek-like geo (the geo before Trek went new school), along with a new carbon mfg partner, and rack up the awards.

    The personal preference bias often gets set by what bikes people start off on. Starting off on a typical race-inspired XC bike tends to put people on modern race geo that gets so much more done on less, encouraging fitness and high milage exploration. Starting off on a huckable bike encourages a DH race bias, but without real DH tracks to do DH races on, freeride, slope, and enduro become what the riders go after, but those turn out to be tougher to go after, and the rider begins to look for a support group to motivate them to progress towards such goals. When these riders switch over to the other side, they feel how the bikes are great for doing certain things, but when they see that they can't enjoy what they were used to doing before on the new bikes they switched to, they feel a pull to go back to what they're used to.

  85. #85
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    I agree with Varaxis. I think.

  86. #86
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    WOW, really
    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    The issue lies more in personal preference,.............endless dribble
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  87. #87
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    My bad. I'm just zooming out to try and see the big picture, and preaching basically about how all this debating winds up being summed up as: it depends, mostly on personal preferences and circumstances. Others here have said what I said in 1-2 lines, about how people like what they're used to.

    I just dislike how people are being influenced by others' opinions so easily, especially regarding what's considered good and what's bad. If the OP wants a good reason to go for the EPO, I'd say set a fresh series challenges that can really test the various limits of you and your bike beforehand. Then point out what you'd like improved, in order to accomplish those goals, and if that means improving your equipment, question Canfield themselves directly and see if they have the answer. If they're not confident in their bike delivering what you want, then don't buy it.

    That and I'm also skeptical of the heavy rearward weight bias of the new school bikes. Sure it helps on steep DHs, but that's gotta compromise the rest of the ride. I'm more for the things you can't figure out from a spec sheet, like stiffness in the right places to provide the confidence for descending. I know it felt oddly refreshing to ride a bike with a front end so stout that it didn't bow noticeably from being on the front brakes, which increased my accuracy greatly on descents and for setting up on corners.

    I'm on an E29 and ROS9, which I thought would be a great 2-bike quiver, but they aren't making me want to sell my other bikes. In fact, I want to try and sell these. Might just be me and how it is in the SW USA, despite being made by companies with roots in CA and CO. Personal preference... endless dribble...

  88. #88
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    ^^Not your bad for thinking about it, but that's a lot of debate about how different designs and builds ride.

    IIRC, the R in MTBR stands for rhetoric, not riding.

    Oh, wait, review. Sorry.

  89. #89
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    This recent-most take on frame geometry has been a work in progress, though having a 10 year gap in execution. Was looking hard for a longer IH 6POINT when they hit the stores. 150mm rear axle, 83mm threaded BB, a proper DW*LINK.
    The longer front-center places a rider in a much better relation to the BB when the bike as itself is in rotation there, less immediacy to the dropping sensation and then better tracking along straight ahead sections.
    Dunno about the masses here, but this seemingly small change in DownTube- and TopTube length has been anticipated for a long while.
    I like Sand - I don't like Witches


  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haint View Post
    This recent-most take on frame geometry has been a work in progress, though having a 10 year gap in execution. Was looking hard for a longer IH 6POINT when they hit the stores. 150mm rear axle, 83mm threaded BB, a proper DW*LINK.
    The longer front-center places a rider in a much better relation to the BB when the bike as itself is in rotation there, less immediacy to the dropping sensation and then better tracking along straight ahead sections.
    Dunno about the masses here, but this seemingly small change in DownTube- and TopTube length has been anticipated for a long while.
    exactly Long front centers are freaking awesome and with short rear ends end up being quicker around turns than XC bikes.

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    exactly Long front centers are freaking awesome and with short rear ends end up being quicker around turns than XC bikes.
    Geometry being what it is, everything's a compromise though. Yes, the short rear-center will bring the rear wheel forward quicker, at a loss of high speed stability to a degree. Really does depend upon how versatile the bicycle needs to be - no DJ Bike will be able to cope with a day of DH runs, and vice versa.

    There's a small satellite-company who is re-issuing Iron Horse front-halves, mostly the Sunday. Should the lowly 6POINT have enough circulation to win Zelvy's approval, simply providing an inch and a half to the frame front center would create the ultimate all-day bike.
    Asking as to why I could not have one this long (in 2005) I was told to get a 21" frame. Impossible - am 6ft w/ a 31" inseam. My knees would be mincemeat.
    I like Sand - I don't like Witches


  92. #92
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    How much weight does new school geometry add to a bike? Any FS bike used for cross country riding that weighs more than 30 lbs is a pig (no offense, Mr. Pig). It seems like weight has gone by the wayside with heavier long travel suspension components, longer frames, wider tires and rims, dropper seatpost, and the like. Doesn't anyone climb hills anymore?

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeDee View Post
    How much weight does new school geometry add to a bike? Any FS bike used for cross country riding that weighs more than 30 lbs is a pig (no offense, Mr. Pig). It seems like weight has gone by the wayside with heavier long travel suspension components, longer frames, wider tires and rims, dropper seatpost, and the like. Doesn't anyone climb hills anymore?
    You're imagining this. Firstly, XC bikes aren't seeing any longer travel. Second, I know plenty of modern AM bikes built below 30 lbs.

  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    My bad. I'm just zooming out to try and see the big picture, and preaching basically about how all this debating winds up being summed up as: it depends, mostly on personal preferences and circumstances. Others here have said what I said in 1-2 lines, about how people like what they're used to.

    I just dislike how people are being influenced by others' opinions so easily, especially regarding what's considered good and what's bad. If the OP wants a good reason to go for the EPO, I'd say set a fresh series challenges that can really test the various limits of you and your bike beforehand. Then point out what you'd like improved, in order to accomplish those goals, and if that means improving your equipment, question Canfield themselves directly and see if they have the answer. If they're not confident in their bike delivering what you want, then don't buy it.

    That and I'm also skeptical of the heavy rearward weight bias of the new school bikes. Sure it helps on steep DHs, but that's gotta compromise the rest of the ride. I'm more for the things you can't figure out from a spec sheet, like stiffness in the right places to provide the confidence for descending. I know it felt oddly refreshing to ride a bike with a front end so stout that it didn't bow noticeably from being on the front brakes, which increased my accuracy greatly on descents and for setting up on corners.

    I'm on an E29 and ROS9, which I thought would be a great 2-bike quiver, but they aren't making me want to sell my other bikes. In fact, I want to try and sell these. Might just be me and how it is in the SW USA, despite being made by companies with roots in CA and CO. Personal preference... endless dribble...
    You're making a massive assumption based on your lack of experience with newer, slacker, bikes.

    The upsides of slacker geometry FAR outweigh any downside. A short rear end doesn't make a bike unstable, that's a function of HTA and wheelbase...and what's more stable? A slacker HTA, and when you ride it right, it turns just as well, probably better than a steeper bike.

    The old theory that bikes have to be steep, twitchy and downright confidence sapping to be fast is wrong, and the trend of XC driving all MTB design is dead and buried.

    If you're concerned about SW riding, take a look at Tempe-based Pivot, which makes bikes on the slacker side. I don't think Cocalis has ever been accused of building bad bikes.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeDee View Post
    Doesn't anyone climb hills anymore?
    I've climbed about 100,000ft so far this year on my almost 30lb 6" bike. HTFU.

  95. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by richde View Post
    A short rear end doesn't make a bike unstable, that's a function of HTA and wheelbase...
    Picture your bike as a see saw, with your center of gravity sitting on top of it. Your bike takes hits from below, from the front or rear tire contact patch. If your center of gravity is roughly in the center of the bike, the bike will rotate around your COG more, and lift you less. If your weight is directly over the rear axle, force from the ground is directly lifting you rather than rotating the bike around you.

    That's why in theory, super short chainstays will make you feel the hits to the rear wheel more, will lift you more, and will therefore be less stable.

    That's just theory of course. Lots of downhill bikes have short chainstays, but they normally aren't as short as they could be.

    and what's more stable? A slacker HTA, and when you ride it right, it turns just as well, probably better than a steeper bike.
    From my experience, long slack bikes do NOT handle tight switchbacks as well as shorter, steeper geometry.

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    In my defense mtb is a pretty equipment centric lifestyle. If mountain biking is a big part of your life then it stands to reason that you would be interested in the tech aspects.
    Back to my comment about all you equipment nerds. I'm one too.
    I think new stuff is cool, but it's almost like its completely separate from riding.
    You don't have to care at all about equipment and still love to ride. We've all seen the guy who kicks ass on his rusty hard tail and Converse All Stars, right?

  97. #97
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    Almost anything I do on my new bike I could do on any of my previous bikes. Put dropper posts on 90's bikes and that would really close the gap!

    If a bike is steeper and more endo prone, you ride steep rocky downhills differently. That doesn't make it bad. It could make it extra exciting, actually. If you race or care about going as fast as possible, this stuff matters more I guess.

    Riders get on the bike and figure out how to make it work. Equipment nerds get on the bike and ride down while thinking about the new parts or new bike they need so they can be more agro.

    It's not the bike that excels at downhills, inspires confidence or "allows you" to clean more gnar, its the rider that makes it happen.

    When I ride my older bikes I think of them as being different, not worse. It's a different kind of fun.

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post

    It's not the bike that excels at downhills, inspires confidence or "allows you" to clean more gnar, its the rider that makes it happen.

    going from a 100mm front and rear 73 degree head angle with 23.4 TT lenght and 18.2 stays to my current 140mm 66 degree head angle, 24.1 16.2 chainstays for let me do thing I could not do, and still could not do well on the XC bike. The new bike for sure allows me to get the front end up easier and makes it far easier to jump over stuff on trail, go off drop and take on gnarlier roll downs. Its really is not me it the bike and the strava time prove to me that the modern geo is actually faster being ridden back to back by me.

  99. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    going from a 100mm front and rear 73 degree head angle with 23.4 TT lenght and 18.2 stays
    Sounds a lot like my 2008 Intense Spider 29er?

    to my current 140mm 66 degree head angle, 24.1 16.2 chainstays for let me do thing I could not do, and still could not do well on the XC bike. The new bike for sure allows me to get the front end up easier and makes it far easier to jump over stuff on trail, go off drop and take on gnarlier roll downs. Its really is not me it the bike and the strava time prove to me that the modern geo is actually faster being ridden back to back by me.
    What I'm saying is that I could ride my same trails on any of my old bikes and have just as much fun on any of them. I'm not saying the rides would be the same or take the same time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    In my defense mtb is a pretty equipment centric lifestyle. If mountain biking is a big part of your life then it stands to reason that you would be interested in the tech aspects.
    Doesnt have to be. My friend rides about 5 days a week, maybe 80-100 miles/week mtb, won cat 2 last year. He does very little of his own maint, doesnt know anything about slack/steep, chainstays etc. He also only switches bikes every 5 years where most in his group switch every 2 years.

    He knows that most of the gain is from riding. He doesnt really train, doesnt measure heart rates or anything like that.

    He rides and wants to spend all his time riding, not reading forums, not debating tech etc.

    I think it is a good way to be.

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