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  1. #1
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    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here

    Kona Honzo Build

    2012 Kona Honzo Med.
    2012 Fox F29, 120mm, RLC, Tapered, 15mm TA
    Stanís Flow Wheelset with 3.30 front hub, 3.30 Heavy Duty rear hub
    Maxxis Ardents: fr/2.4exo, rr/2.25
    Thomson X4 70mm zero rise stem
    Thomson Elite seatpost
    Easton Monkeylite xc lo-rise carbon bar 27 inches
    Specialized Henge Expert Saddle, ti rails
    Odi Rogue lock-ons
    Avid Elixirs R 185/160
    Sram 991? chain
    XT cranks
    XT med. cage derailleur
    Shimano 12-36t cassette
    Niner 32t front chain ring
    XT rear shifter
    BBG bash
    N-gear Jumpstop
    Cane Creek Headset / inset top, external lower

    27 lbs. 13 ounces

    Here's my review after my first ride today:


    Just got back from ATT and I'm really, really, happy with the bike.

    First of all, I expected the front end to wander on steep climbs, but it stuck, no wandering. This has a lot to do with the steep seat tube. It felt very efficient without any discernable bottom bracket flex. I expected this because the tubes Kona uses are fatter than my old Niner MCR 9. This frame weighs 5.75lbs. where the Niner 853 steel frame weighed 4.5lbs. and doesn't have sliding dropouts. For my weight, about 200lbs., the MCR 9 was nooodly, but comfortable. I felt it absorbed a lot of my pedaling power and the head tube was extremely flexy. The Honzo is a stout frame, and I don't think you can achieve that without it weighing more. I don't notice the weight, but I do notice the power transfer and SOLID feel of the frame. Also, I expected to dab the more technical sections because I'm not tuned to this bike yet, but I cleaned them all.

    After reaching the top we lowered our seats and headed back. The words that comes to mind descending on this bike are INSANELY FAWKING AWESOME. Because of the short chain stays, the bike corners like a roller coaster doing a 180. The Honzo's geometry positions you over the rear tire and the pivot point of the bike in the turns. I'm not much of a downhiller, but I was flying and not worrying about any ruts or rocks because the fork and frame just swallowed them up, very confidence inspiring. The chain stays also make coming off jumps more intuitive. With Niner's geometry I always felt like I was waiting for the rear tire when popping off curbs and jumps, but the Kona feels right on.

    This is the best bike I have ever owned, period. If you're worried about frame weight, you could save about 1/4-1/2 lb. going with a Canfield Nimble 9. The geometries with 120mm forks are almost identical, but the Nimble 9 has a slacker seat tube, which may affect climbing, and it does not accommodate a tapered fork, two things I really love about the Honzo.


    PS - check out this video of the Honzo in action:

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/carabaoray/6337948649/" title="IMG_1499 by carabaoray, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm7.static.flickr.com/6215/6337948649_b6fd59e3f4_b.jpg" width="1024" height="768" alt="IMG_1499"></a>

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/carabaoray/6337948347/" title="IMG_1498 by carabaoray, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm7.static.flickr.com/6214/6337948347_10a35f42cc_b.jpg" width="1024" height="768" alt="IMG_1498"></a>
    Last edited by carabao; 11-12-2011 at 03:39 PM.

  2. #2
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    Build In Progress

    I received my frame (which included a seat collar and cable clips) last week and so far I have scraped together for the build this stuff:

    SunRingle Charger Experts (black)
    Marz 44 Micro Ti 140 Taper (black)
    SLX crankset (rings removed)
    e*13 32t (blue)
    SLX brakes w/ 180/160 XT rotors
    Crank Brothers Joplin
    WTB Rocket Team
    Sunline V1 65/0 stem (blue)
    Sunline V1 762mm flat bars (blue)
    Syncros Hardcore ZS44 Tall Upper
    Can Creek EC44 lower
    ODI Rogues
    X.9 short cage
    x.9 rear trigger
    Sram 971 11-34 cassette
    1 can of frame saver
    Sram 971 chain
    CB Candy SL (blue)



    Over the next few weeks these will follow:

    MRP Lopes SL chain guide ISCG05
    undecided tires










    Last edited by eauxgod; 12-06-2011 at 09:43 AM.

  3. #3
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    I recommend a Cane Creek headset. My fork knobs barely cleared the downtube by 1.5-2mm and it looks sweet.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    Kona Honzo Build

    2012 Kona Honzo Med.
    2012 Fox F29, 120mm, RLC, Tapered, 15mm TA
    Stanís Flow Wheelset with 3.30 front hub, 3.30 Heavy Duty rear hub
    Maxxis Ardents: fr/2.4exo, rr/2.25
    Thomson X4 70mm zero rise stem
    Thomson Elite seatpost
    Easton Monkeylite xc lo-rise carbon bar 27 inches
    Specialized Henge Expert Saddle, ti rails
    Odi Rogue lock-ons
    Avid Elixirs R 185/160
    Sram 991? chain
    XT cranks
    XT med. cage derailleur
    Shimano 12-36t cassette
    Niner 32t front chain ring
    XT rear shifter
    BBG bash
    N-gear Jumpstop
    Cane Creek Headset / inset top, external lower

    27 lbs. 13 ounces

    Here's my review after my first ride today:


    PS - check out this video of the Honzo in action:




    Very respectable weight. I can't see your pics.

  5. #5
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    I think I fixed the pics.

  6. #6
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    These Syncros headsets are on par with Kings and 110s, IMO, plus I need the height of the RWC Externalizer to keep my geometry in spec.

    Nice build btw...
    Last edited by eauxgod; 11-12-2011 at 07:32 PM. Reason: My brand new snifter.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    I think I fixed the pics.
    Yep, I see 'em now....

  8. #8
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    Here's my build

    20" Honzo frame. Bike had all the standard build kit when I got it. No bare frames avail in 20".

    From the stock build I've kept the 120mm revelation fork, chain guide, cranks, bb, cassette, seat post collar, and headset.

    Build:

    RockShox Revelation RL Dual Air 120mm/20mm DO
    FSA Step-Up cranks
    FSA The Pig headset (I have a King headset on back order)
    e13 ls1 chain guide
    Niner carbon flat top bar
    FSA SLK carbon seat post
    WTB Rocket V saddle
    X9 shifter
    X9 rear derailleur
    Shimano HG61 12-36 9 spd
    Elixir 9 brakes with 180mm rotors
    Thomson 80mm 0 degree stem
    Arch rims laced to DT Swiss 240s hubs with blue nipples
    2.2 kenda slant six up front
    2.1 kenda small block 8 in the rear
    (36 teeth upgrade for rear hub on my workbench just waiting to be installed)

    Currently have oury grips but I have odi rogues sitting here. Just waiting for my blue clamps.

    I'll convert to single speed when I have the legs built up. Coming from a 3x10 this 1x9 is a pretty good work out. Loving the bike.






  9. #9
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    The first two pics are awesome carabao.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    The first two pics are awesome carabao.
    Thanks

  11. #11
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    Anyone know what a bare Honzo frame weighs? Many thanks.

  12. #12
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    mines stock! and it sh-reds.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by pulsepro View Post
    Anyone know what a bare Honzo frame weighs? Many thanks.
    Somebody on here weighed a medium at 5 pounds 13 ounces. That weight is fine with me considering comparable frames like the Nimble 9 are only a 1/4-1/2 pound lighter. I think the weight difference is due to the different diameter/size tubing on the seat, down, and top tubes. All three tubes on the Honzo are fatter, but since I'm 200lbs. I appreciate the durability, sturdiness, and stiffness they create. If you're lighter you may want to build up something else. I love hove the frame feels because it's stiff with the perfect amount of compliance.

  14. #14
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    Really nice bikes guys. I am loving the look for the Honzo.

  15. #15
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    RE: EauxGod's pics - Loving the deep blue! Can't believe what a great color match. I would almost have to do a blue brooks saddle to complete the set.

  16. #16
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    Fyi

    I measured my 18" frame; it's 5.5 lbs with published CS and ETT dims...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    I measured my 18" frame; it's 5.5 lbs with published CS and ETT dims...
    Thanks for the info. I never got a chance to weigh mine, but the only other medium frame weighed was reportedly 5 lbs, 13 ounces. So, I'm going to go with your numbers. Post up when you get it built.

  18. #18
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    venetian honzo

    At last my time has come: finished last Saturday, tested on the mud on Sunday: seems like next summer I will have some fun

    here is how it is dressed :

    frame size 18
    fork Fox 120
    wheels Hope/ ZTR Arch
    1x10 crankset Aka + 32t Protone chainring , cassette XX 11-36, der. X0, chainguide Shaman
    handlebar RaceFace Atlas Freeride + Oury DH
    seatpost GravityDropper, saddle Gobi XM
    Brakes Avid Elixir R with Hope 180/160 rotors
    etc....
    KG. 13 -
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  19. #19
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    ^ Awesome build.

  20. #20
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    These builds look great. italiancarbs, I'll ask you the same question I ask all Honzo owners... what size tire are you running on the rear and does it look like you have enough room to comfortably run a 2.35 or 2.4?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by noosa2 View Post
    These builds look great. italiancarbs, I'll ask you the same question I ask all Honzo owners... what size tire are you running on the rear and does it look like you have enough room to comfortably run a 2.35 or 2.4?
    Thanks.
    The one you see in these pics on the rear is a Bontrager 2.2 (cut at the first downhill, now I am running a Nobby Evo). For sure the frame can run more than that and I believe that Kona is selling the complete bike with 2.4 front & rear.....






    ...

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by italiancarbs View Post
    Thanks.
    The one you see in these pics on the rear is a Bontrager 2.2 (cut at the first downhill, now I am running a Nobby Evo). For sure the frame can run more than that and I believe that Kona is selling the complete bike with 2.4 front & rear.....






    ...
    Not quite. 2.25 rear and there's not much room left for anything else.

  23. #23
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    20L Garage Queen Pics

    Here she is, virgin photo shoot.
    Build weight 29.6 lbs. I was hoping for under 30 lbs for psychological reasons.

    Did a shake down ride and all was glorious as expected during the honeymoon period.

    First the pros:

    1. Short stays make the bike super playfull! Every rock presents an opportunity to air and tail whip. I was able to perform a proper bunnyhop for the first time!

    2. Climbing was as good as could be expected for the weight and gearing. Standing climbing traction was very good due to the short stays.

    3. XT 10 speed shifting was smooth! Coming from Sram X.9, I was blown away by the light touch and precision. It also allows multiple shifts up/down per stroke.

    Nitpicks:
    1. Low BB height was kind of a bummer. With a 140 Marz 44, it was around 12.3" unsagged. Going my Waltworks at ~13.5", I was hitting every rogue rock (running 180 cranks). Overall I prefer a 13"+ BB.

    2. Ultimately 1x10 gearing may limit my ride length (or make me super strong!).

    3. Seat post kept slipping. Maybe CF isn't the best choice with this frame. Planning on getting an Erikson sweet post.

    4. I crashed (not the bike's fault) carrying a bit too much speed into a rock garden. Ice on the knee as we speak..

    Overall, I was pretty stoked with the bike. Overall head angle seemed close to my Waltworks w/ 120 minute, which surprised me. However, I was running a lot of sag on the Marz, since I was originally planning on running it at 120. I'll have to get a protractor to measure the actual HA.

    The toptube felt every bit as long as the 26" claimed. I was expecting it to be shorter based on the actual tube measurements. Will probably run a 60mm stem.

    The biggest difference between the bikes is the short rear end of the Honzo, which makes for a playfull ride. Thats why I bought it!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-img_3058.jpg  

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  24. #24
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    Looks good, but hopefully Kona gets the memo and increases that rear chainstay clearance for much bigger tires on the 2013 Honzo. It would be a killer frame with 2.4 Ardents all around. I've never been one to mix tire widths.

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    Really???

    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Looks good, but hopefully Kona gets the memo and increases that rear chainstay clearance for much bigger tires on the 2013 Honzo. It would be a killer frame with 2.4 Ardents all around. I've never been one to mix tire widths.
    I'm running - frankly huge - Schwalbe 2.35 Hans Dampf tires on Stans Flow rims with the stays of my Honzo 100% all the way forward (16.3" as claimed).

    If a 2.4 Ardent doesn't fit (surprised since the side knob of the Hans is more aggressive and the air volume is huge) you could always lengthen the wheelbase a slight bit; definitely not an issue that warrants a redesign.

    For that matter, if you like the Ardent I would challenge you to try a Specialized Eskar or a Schwalbe Hans Dampf. At least around here (Pacific North West) either tire is better in EVERY way.

    -D

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrewM View Post
    I'm running - frankly huge - Schwalbe 2.35 Hans Dampf tires on Stans Flow rims with the stays of my Honzo 100% all the way forward (16.3" as claimed).

    If a 2.4 Ardent doesn't fit (surprised since the side knob of the Hans is more aggressive and the air volume is huge) you could always lengthen the wheelbase a slight bit; definitely not an issue that warrants a redesign.

    For that matter, if you like the Ardent I would challenge you to try a Specialized Eskar or a Schwalbe Hans Dampf. At least around here (Pacific North West) either tire is better in EVERY way.

    -D
    That's a first. I think you're running the biggest tire on the rear so far. Care to share some pics of the clearances? How tight is it?

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    That's a first. I think you're running the biggest tire on the rear so far. Care to share some pics of the clearances? How tight is it?
    It is pretty tight, but there is a comfortable amount of room all around. Definitely no rubbing and no issues with our wet -granular- "mud" or with loamy trails.

    I will try and get some decent shots tomorrow, the ones I have don't show the clearance very well.

    -D

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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    That's a first. I think you're running the biggest tire on the rear so far. Care to share some pics of the clearances? How tight is it?
    Apologies for the delay...

    Here are the photos as promised. As noted, clearance is tight but no problem with rubbing or blockage in mud or loam. If I road predominantly in the Don Valley this wouldn't be my first choice (then again, I'd also be on a Kula Watt not a Honzo).

    As an aside, the tires are awesome as well. Heavy compared to my previous combos but confidence inspiring in any technical situation (up or down).




  29. #29
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    Thanks for the pics, but man those are tight clearances. A slight wobble in the rim and I bet that will rub.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Thanks for the pics, but man those are tight clearances. A slight wobble in the rim and I bet that will rub.
    Cheers!

    Like I said, there is room for mud etc. I'm on top of my gear maintenance wise (and this set of Flow/King wheels has seen ~300 rides), so out of true wheels aren't a huge concern for me.

    If I did badly tweak a rim it would be easy enough to lengthen the wheel base (four bolts) to get home.

    ...


    The Hans Dampf is huge (still on the fence if I like it as a rear tire or not). Huge confidence in technical climbing or descending but a bit slow everywhere else.

    If you need more mud clearance then running a smaller tire or lengthening the wheel base slightly don't seem like such a big deal?

    ...

    Honzo (yes, we're on a first name basis) is a bit portly even with a pretty lightweight build. I have definitely owned faster, more capable bikes (up, down and all-around). That said, it is ridiculously fun (most fun bike I have ever owned), which for me is the point.

    If you haven't had a chance to take one offroad I would highly recommend it! Geometry charts and photos aside the proof is in the pedaling.

    -D
    Last edited by DrewM; 12-22-2011 at 09:32 AM. Reason: Cheers!

  31. #31
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    Confirmation and Pics that Ardent 2.4s do Fit

    I mounted up an Ardent 2.4 and it fits just fine.

    I'm running them on a fairly wide rim, Flows, and have plenty of clearance. From the pics you can see there's 2-3 millimeters more clearance available by moving the wheel back a smidge.

    I've run this same setup on a Niner MCR and Air 9 with no issues, and the Honzo has at least the same clearance, more if you slide rear wheel back a bit. In fact, my rear wheel has a wobble in it and still clears fine.

    I'll try to imbed pics, but if I fail, here's a link to the pics:

    Dec 21, 2011 - a set on Flickr
    Last edited by carabao; 12-22-2011 at 12:44 PM.

  32. #32
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    ^ Awesome. Thanks!!!

  33. #33
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    Btw, running 2.4s with the Fox F29 (8mm shorter than the Rockshox Revelation) and a Cane Creek headset (12mm bottom cup, 1.4 shorter than the FSA Kona measures geo with) my bottom bracket is at 12.3-12.4 inches. Before I went to a 2.4 in the back, my BB was about 12.1" (that was measured with a well worn Ardent 2.25).

    The reason I point this out is because the geo charts on Kona's website are accurate if you use the same headset and fork. Just putting this out there for those custom builders.

  34. #34
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    Speaking of charts, I remember seeing a Kona frame sizing chart at one point on the interwebs. Do you know where I could find a chart for the honzo or a similar bike? I'm 6' tall and I noticed they have the honzo up to 22" I thought..

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    Have you done any slick rock riding with this yet?

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by dzilla View Post
    Speaking of charts, I remember seeing a Kona frame sizing chart at one point on the interwebs. Do you know where I could find a chart for the honzo or a similar bike? I'm 6' tall and I noticed they have the honzo up to 22" I thought..
    The 22" is just a 20" Long version, with a WB of 46.1" and ETT of 26", and still a 20" seat tube. No real 22" available per say.

  37. #37
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    Updated pic of my Honzo, wider bar (Raceface SIXC 725mm 9/4 sweep) and shorter stem (Thomson 50mm).

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/carabaoray/6625861393/" title="IMG_0810 by carabaoray, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7028/6625861393_03f6304cbc_b.jpg" width="1024" height="640" alt="IMG_0810"></a>
    Last edited by carabao; 01-02-2012 at 10:32 PM.

  38. #38
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    Hey carabao, pic isn't loading...

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    Quote Originally Posted by strikerkidNY View Post
    Hey carabao, pic isn't loading...
    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/carabaoray/6625861393/" title="IMG_0810 by carabaoray, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7028/6625861393_03f6304cbc_b.jpg" width="1024" height="640" alt="IMG_0810"></a>

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    Updated pic of my Honzo, wider bar (Raceface SIXC 725mm 9/4 sweep) and shorter stem (Thomson 50mm).

    <
    She looks much more aggressive....I've got to find the way to short mine (stem ) and still have room for myself ( I have a 90mm Thomson)

    bella bici !


    ......

  41. #41
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    Damn, carabao! that is one fast looking bike!

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by strikerkidNY View Post
    Damn, carabao! that is one fast looking bike!
    Thanks, I'm in love with it. I named her Matilda.

  43. #43
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    Plenty of room here too with Ardent 2.4s mounted to Charger Experts @ 40psi tubless for the initial set up...
    Last edited by eauxgod; 01-07-2012 at 05:18 PM.

  44. #44
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    Sun Ringle Charger Experts (stickers to be removed)
    Ardent 2.4s, tubeless
    Marz 44 Micro Ti 140
    SLX cranks
    e*13 32t
    SLX brakes w/ 180/160 XT rotors
    Crank Brothers Joplin (temporary...)
    WTB Rocket Team
    Sunline V1 65/0 stem
    Sunline V1 762mm flat bars
    Syncros Hardcore ZS44 Tall Upper
    Cane Creek EC44 lower
    ODI Rogues
    X.9 short cage
    X.9 rear trigger
    Sram 971 11-34 cassette
    Crank Brother Candy 3 Cands
    MRP Lopes SL chain guide ISCG05

    Right at 30 lbs...








    Last edited by eauxgod; 01-20-2012 at 08:08 AM.

  45. #45
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    Looking good! Where does this bike reside?

  46. #46
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    Man, that looks awesome. Nice touch with the silver faceplate on the stem. I would have opted for a silver E13 ring up front to continue the theme.

    Your build with the exception of the fork would have been the same as mine, kinda regret sending the frame back now lol, although the geo wasn't on par with what what listed online and what I was measuring at home, plus Kona said 2.4 Ardents won't fit. Oh, well. Maybe I'll pick up a 2013 Honzo.

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    Thanks! It's a little much for around here but I like bikes on the burly side.
    Last edited by eauxgod; 01-19-2012 at 08:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    Thanks! The bike, bless it's heart, will reside in south Louisiana. It's a little much for around here but I like bikes on the burly side.
    If you ever make it to the west coast, hit me up and we'll ride some chunk and flow. I'm in San Diego.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    If you ever make it to the west coast, hit me up and we'll ride some chunk and flow. I'm in San Diego.
    Thanks for the invite, maybe one of these days (if you all can still ride your bikes offroad ).
    Last edited by eauxgod; 01-10-2012 at 05:42 PM.

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    Thanks Man! It took a while to get my ducks in a row...

  51. #51
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    My Honzo

    Had a very hard time to choose between the Trans am 29 and the Honzo, also had some custom thoughts, but finally went with the Honzo.
    The parking lot spinn left me very ambiguous, it's my first niner and feels very strange. Very hard to bunny or manual, guess that's the whel size, it's my first 29er. Coming from DH and street rigs, I built it as my new AM machine, hope the trail characteristics are different than the parking lot's.
    This bike replaces my beloved Blur 4X which will probably be buit heavier for free riding, it broke my back in AM, not very climbing friendly for a lower spine challenged rider.
    I really hope that once I'm on the trail I'll fall in love with it.
    The build:
    Reba RLT 20 TA
    SLX brakes
    Velovity Blunt over Hope pro 2 F and R
    LX cranks with 32 SS chain ring (CNC, don't remember the name)
    Sram X9 short cage and PC 990 cassete.
    Thomsons post and stem
    WTB saddle
    Crossmark rear Ardent Lust front (first time I'm using this one, and on the lot it didn't feel so good cornering)
    came to ~13.3 KG

    Sorry for the crappy images, that's what my Galaxy S I is capable of with this lightning.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-2012-01-20-00.09.59.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-2012-01-20-00.13.52.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-2012-01-20-00.54.58.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-2012-01-20-01.42.07.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-2012-01-20-01.45.08.jpg  


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    Niiice Honzo's everyone! I can't wait to post up Honzo's lil bro the Steely, but need a couple more posts before MTBR will allow it.

    eauxgod - let's see some pics post sticker removal...

  53. #53
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    WOW, nice looking bike and build, very colour coordinated and blingy

    Seriously, you call that "plenty" of clearance If that's "plenty" of room to you you obviously don't ever ride in the mud.
    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    Plenty of room here too with Ardent 2.4s mounted to Charger Experts @ 40psi tubless for the initial set up...
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    WOW, nice looking bike and build, very colour coordinated and blingy

    Seriously, you call that "plenty" of clearance If that's "plenty" of room to you you obviously don't ever ride in the mud.


    Plenty can mean adequate, sufficient, or as your taking it, an abundance of. I run 2.4 Ardents with the wheel slammed forward and their is adequate clearance for the type of dirt, mud, and debris encountered in Socal. If you ride in heavy clay-like mud, then I see how this would be insufficient. You could achieve more clearance by sliding the wheel back a 1/4" and the Honzo would still have shorter chainstays than the Chromag Surface and Transition Transam 29. It seems the all mountain hardtail 29er niche is growing, so their will be plenty of options down the road. Rumor is that Niner Bikes is developing one.

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    Niiice Honzo's everyone! I can't wait to post up Honzo's lil bro the Steely, but need a couple more posts before MTBR will allow it.

    eauxgod - let's see some pics post sticker removal...
    Here:



    Last edited by eauxgod; 01-22-2012 at 09:39 AM.

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    WOW, nice looking bike and build, very colour coordinated and blingy
    Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Seriously, you call that "plenty" of clearance If that's "plenty" of room to you you obviously don't ever ride in the mud.
    The original word was 2.4s would not fit, so one could gather from my pic that the tire is not smashed up against the yoke and there is "plenty" of room to spin freely. As far as mud goes, having less clearance means that the yoke will scrape the mud off therefore keeping the rotational mass down allowing for faster speeds which will sling even more mud off.

  57. #57
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    OK, I guess going by that then, then yes there's room if you ride on dirt trails and never when it's wet. On your theory of the yoke scraping off the mud and keeping the weight down allowing you to go faster, it's a good theory, but in practice, at least here I find doesn't quite work. Although I don't have lot of clearance on my V1 Paradox (can't honestly run bigger than 2.25") in terms of mud clearing, I managed to not have a build up yesterday (super, super wet, muddy ride), while others riding we me did, but I attribute that to the narrower 2.25" CST Ousters and how great they shed the mud.

    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    The original word was 2.4s would not fit, so one could gather from my pic that the tire is not smashed up against the yoke and there is "plenty" of room to spin freely. As far as mud goes, having less clearance means that the yoke will scrape the mud off therefore keeping the rotational mass down allowing for faster speeds which will sling even more mud off.
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold
    You're doing mtbr wrong, you're supposed to get increasingly offended by the implications that you're doing ANYTHING wrong.

  58. #58
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    eauxgod- I like what you did there with the decals. Any reason for ditching the dropper post?

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Any reason for ditching the dropper post?
    Definitely sexier with the dropper. Need more room?
    Sometimes, you need to go fast enough that the trail is a blur to find clarity. -- Wild Bill

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    Another Updated Pic

    You can't see 'em, but I'm running new XT brakes. Best brake ever.




  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    You can't see 'em, but I'm running new XT brakes. Best brake ever.


    Awesome bike; awesome photo
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

  62. #62
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    NDS photo fail....

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    Quote Originally Posted by anomaly View Post
    NDS photo fail....
    I don't know why the photo is failing for you, but here's another try:


  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    eauxgod- I like what you did there with the decals. Any reason for ditching the dropper post?

    Thanks...no reason per se other than I just happened to have one laying around that came with a complete that I purchased last year. A dropper is not something that I see needing on a regular basis, but at least I have one for trips to real mountains....

  65. #65
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    Any of you guys finding the BB too low at 12.2"? This is the lowest BB from all the 29er AM frames I'm looking at.

  66. #66
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    I like low bb's

    I think frames with low bb's handle better. Yes, you may hit your crank or pedal occasionally but it's a trade off. I'm on a shortened Marz 44 (maybe 110mm) that I dislike but haven't had too many pedal strikes on mine.
    2 wheels

  67. #67
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    Dude, I'm gona beg you to please post up a bigger version of the pic below, awesome, awesome shot, absolutely love it, would like it for a desktop image, 1920x1080 por favor?

    Quote Originally Posted by Harold
    You're doing mtbr wrong, you're supposed to get increasingly offended by the implications that you're doing ANYTHING wrong.

  68. #68
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    [QUOTE=LyNx;8949543]Dude, I'm gona beg you to please post up a bigger version of the pic below, awesome, awesome shot, absolutely love it, would like it for a desktop image, 1920x1080 por favor?

    Thanks! I'll work on it, but it was tough just getting this picture posted off of flickr. If you know of a site that hosts larger size pics, let me know. You could also pm me and I'd be happy to email it to you. Thanks again for the compliment.

  69. #69
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    I don't find the bb too low, but I have had a couple pedal strikes. I think it's well worth the trade off for the stability and cornering benefits. If you're worried about it, I would go with the Transition Transam 29. Its head angle is only half a degree steeper and the chainstay is a bit longer, but I'm sure it's a nice ride. The only thing I don't like about that bike is the 30.9mm seat tube. The honzo has a 31.6 which I believe helps make the rear triangle and bb stiffer. I'm a heavier rider, so I appreciate this. It may not even make that big of a difference though.

  70. #70
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    I ride a steely, which is a degree slacker than the Honzo, and a 1/4 inch longer in the chainstay. I've also taken the Honzo for a couple rides. I think the differences in geo and wheel size act together to bring the 2 bikes to a happy medium making them ride similarly. The shorter chainstay makes it feel nimble for a 29" bike and the lower bottom bracket helps it in the corners. My old bike was 3/4 higher in the bottom bracket, and I don't have any issues with the occasional pedal strike. It's something you just relearn an never look back.

  71. #71
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    Danggg, the Honzo is one sexy bike. I love that blue color so much.

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by lynx View Post
    dude, i'm gona beg you to please post up a bigger version of the pic below, awesome, awesome shot, absolutely love it, would like it for a desktop image, 1920x1080 por favor?
    +100000000

    Please email me the full res pic (see your PM) and I'll host it for you.
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  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Any of you guys finding the BB too low at 12.2"? This is the lowest BB from all the 29er AM frames I'm looking at.
    I think the BB height is the only real flaw on this otherwise stellar bike (yeah it could always be lighter). I'm getting lots of pedal strikes running a 140 Marz, which means the BB is actually a bit higher than 12.2. It can be compensated for in your riding style of course, but again it comes down to individual preference and where you live/ride. For me, somewhere north of 13" is just right. I might experiment with 175 cranks too (currently running 180s).

    I also think the headtube should be a touch longer on the bigger frame sizes. One size fits all HT doesn't make sense.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Dude, I'm gona beg you to please post up a bigger version of the pic below, awesome, awesome shot, absolutely love it, would like it for a desktop image, 1920x1080 por favor?

    The full-res pics are here:
    https://www.mngnt.com/carabao/IMG_0985.JPG
    https://www.mngnt.com/carabao/IMG_0981.JPG
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  75. #75
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    Thanks for that, now have a nice, new desktop image
    Quote Originally Posted by noot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold
    You're doing mtbr wrong, you're supposed to get increasingly offended by the implications that you're doing ANYTHING wrong.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by noot View Post
    Thanks again!

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    Thanks again!
    This is awesome
    Thanks for making those available
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    I ride a steely, which is a degree slacker than the Honzo, and a 1/4 inch longer in the chainstay. I've also taken the Honzo for a couple rides. I think the differences in geo and wheel size act together to bring the 2 bikes to a happy medium making them ride similarly. The shorter chainstay makes it feel nimble for a 29" bike and the lower bottom bracket helps it in the corners. My old bike was 3/4 higher in the bottom bracket, and I don't have any issues with the occasional pedal strike. It's something you just relearn an never look back.
    Thanks for this; somewhat addressed my request in your Steely thread. I'd like to ask here as well though: why didn't you go for the Honzo instead of the Steely?
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

  79. #79
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    I know a lot has been written about 29 vs 26, but in the end they both have their merits on the same trails. I think it comes down to platform preference.

    I owned a Niner Air9 in the past, and have taken this Honzo on a few test rides. I liked the Honzo's slack angles, burly build, and ride quality, but I personally prefer the 26 platform mainly for the small bike feel, quickness in handling, and the pop/pump you get off dips and rises.

    I have no doubt that 29 is more stable and has better roll-over / traction, but it's at the cost of a fun and quickness. If I was to get a 29, it would be a Honzo - after all it inspired my Steely purchase, which is basically the 26" version of the Honzo.

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    I know a lot has been written about 29 vs 26, but in the end they both have their merits on the same trails. I think it comes down to platform preference.

    I owned a Niner Air9 in the past, and have taken this Honzo on a few test rides. I liked the Honzo's slack angles, burly build, and ride quality, but I personally prefer the 26 platform mainly for the small bike feel, quickness in handling, and the pop/pump you get off dips and rises.

    I have no doubt that 29 is more stable and has better roll-over / traction, but it's at the cost of a fun and quickness. If I was to get a 29, it would be a Honzo - after all it inspired my Steely purchase, which is basically the 26" version of the Honzo.
    Thanks
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nevada 29er View Post
    I think the BB height is the only real flaw on this otherwise stellar bike (yeah it could always be lighter). I'm getting lots of pedal strikes running a 140 Marz, which means the BB is actually a bit higher than 12.2. It can be compensated for in your riding style of course, but again it comes down to individual preference and where you live/ride. For me, somewhere north of 13" is just right. I might experiment with 175 cranks too (currently running 180s).

    I also think the headtube should be a touch longer on the bigger frame sizes. One size fits all HT doesn't make sense.
    Thanks for answering, and how are you finding the 20L in terms of fit? IIRC we were just about the same height. I'm still 29er frameless and itching to have something new by spring.

  82. #82
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    "Per your request on 12/30/2011, this message is to notify you that an item you wanted is now available for ordering:

    KON-F12HZ22 Kona Honzo Frame Only, 22, Matte Blue, 2012

    You may use the link below to purchase this item now.

    Bikeman Kona Honzo Frame Only, 22, Matte Blue, 2012

    Please check the item stock status to estimate the delivery time. If delivery of this product is time sensitive we encourage you to contact us for up to the minute ship times to verify that we can accomodate your needs."

    Trailwrecker at large

  83. #83
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    ^ Who did you order with? I know of 2 shops with new shipment sizes in stock!!

  84. #84
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    I'm going crazy waiting for my frame. Anyone know when the next batch of frames are shipping out? Most of my parts have arrived (fork, wheels, brakes, seatpost, etc), just waiting for my bar, stem, bottom headset cup, and HBC ring!
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    I'm going crazy waiting for my frame. Anyone know when the next batch of frames are shipping out?
    Kona has all sizes in stock right now, I got my 20" frame last week... which might answer your fitment question, Eurospek. I'm 6'2" with long legs, and after riding the 20"L for a bit, I felt on top of the bars a lot. I need a layback post, but there is no room to pull the bars back with me, and now I'm too stretched out to throw the bike around. If your extra height on me is in the torso/arms, the 20"L will probably fit you pretty well.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by JulianPeeters View Post
    Kona has all sizes in stock right now, I got my 20" frame last week... which might answer your fitment question, Eurospek. I'm 6'2" with long legs, and after riding the 20"L for a bit, I felt on top of the bars a lot. I need a layback post, but there is no room to pull the bars back with me, and now I'm too stretched out to throw the bike around. If your extra height on me is in the torso/arms, the 20"L will probably fit you pretty well.
    Thanks for your insight, appreciate it a lot and after giving it a lot of thought, and wanting to buy a 2SoulsCycles QH/Slim Jim in XXL and finding out it's put on hold at the moment with no real ETA date, I just saved myself over $700+ and ordered a 20" regular Honzo frame from bikeman.com last night, it has shipped today. It's one of the few AMHT 29er frames that gets me excited and I have a stock pile of 29er parts ready to go, I'm itching for a new bike just in time for spring. Not going to sit around and wait for something that may or may not come at the end of the summer (just like the upcoming On-One Inbred EVO long-travel frame that I've been talking with Brant Richards about, was told end of summer at the earliest).

    Plus it's been confirmed that you can run the 2.4 Ardent or even the 2.35 Hans Dampf, which ultimately sold me on the Honzo. I really wanted a 21" ST, but going with some super-low profile 11mm HT AE01 EVO pedals will do the trick lol.

    Another dilemma I had was frame size, 20" or 20L, and after PM'ing back and forth with JoshM who's my height said the 20L felt long and big, bigger than his 21" XL Specialized Rockhopper. Going to take his word for it, and noticed everyone on the 20L is taller than me, one guy is 6'6" with a 38" cycling inseam and also confirmed it's a LONG bike, even with a 65mm stem. Another guy on singletrackworld.com is 6'8" on a 20L.

    I'm a regular proportioned 6'4", 33/34" pant inseam, normal legs and arms. I want a nimble and flickable bike that is a nudge bigger than my current TransAM with a 36 Float. And plan on running it with a 140 Revelation so the ETT and wheelbase of the 20L is starting to look super long, over 26" ETT and 46"+ WB. And I would only be able to run a 50mm stem on the 20L as everything else would be too stretched out, and as I've learned on the TransAM with a 50mm stem, climbing is no fun at all with such short stems.

    I'm going to run the frame with a Thomson 410 setback post and play around with either a 70mm or 90mm Thomson X4 stem that I have here, along with some nice flat Sunline V1 762 bars, mathching blue, just like eauxgod (I have a feeling we'll have pretty matching builds).

  87. #87
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    For a tapered fork, can anyone confirm I'm ordering the right stuff?

    Universal Cycles -- Cane Creek 40 EC44 1.5" Lower Assembly

    Universal Cycles -- Cane Creek 40-Series ZS44 Upper Assembly

    Thanks!

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    Those are correct. Can't wait to see your bike...

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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    That setup is exactly what I have. What fork are you going to run? I ask because my fork knobs clear the down tube by about 1-2mm and I'd hate for you to have issues on your build. I'm running a Fox F29 120mm Tapered.

    The headset with the tallest bottom cup is the RWC. It will give you a 15mm bottom stack compared to the 12mm Cane Creek. Another alternative is the FSA Orbit at 13.4mm and Chris King at 14.8mm. Basically, the Cane Creek has the very lowest bottom stack. Also, Rockshox forks run 8mm longer than Fox equivalents, at least the 29ers do..

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    I really wanted a 21" ST, but going with some super-low profile 11mm HT AE01 EVO pedals will do the trick lol.
    On the 20L the ST is actually 20.5" BB center to top. Not sure if that holds for the 20", but if so, you're only 0.5" off your ideal.

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    Those are correct. Can't wait to see your bike...
    Thanks, pretty stoked too.

    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    That setup is exactly what I have. What fork are you going to run? I ask because my fork knobs clear the down tube by about 1-2mm and I'd hate for you to have issues on your build. I'm running a Fox F29 120mm Tapered.

    The headset with the tallest bottom cup is the RWC. It will give you a 15mm bottom stack compared to the 12mm Cane Creek. Another alternative is the FSA Orbit at 13.4mm and Chris King at 14.8mm. Basically, the Cane Creek has the very lowest bottom stack. Also, Rockshox forks run 8mm longer than Fox equivalents, at least the 29ers do..
    Rockshox Revelation 140. I'll have to look into the headsets a bit more than. I wasn't really looking to spend more on a headset than the Cane Creek 40 series.

    Could your limited clearance be due to headtube length as well?

    16" frame is 3.5", 18" is 3.9", and 20" is 4.3".

    Quote Originally Posted by Nevada 29er View Post
    On the 20L the ST is actually 20.5" BB center to top. Not sure if that holds for the 20", but if so, you're only 0.5" off your ideal.
    But like I said, the 20L is just too long with ETT and reach, and only could run a 50mm stem on it. I'm over such short stems. And sat on my old Gary Fisher Piranha 21" last night, 24.5" measured actual top tube length, had a 100mm stem, and I was super-stretched compared to my TransAM, it was actually a weird feeling being back on it. I forgot how long the whole thing was.
    Last edited by eurospek; 02-10-2012 at 07:58 AM.

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    I too have a very small gap b/t compression lever on my 44 MicroTi fork and down tube...

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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    ....I'm a regular proportioned 6'4", 33/34" pant inseam, normal legs and arms. I want a nimble and flickable bike that is a nudge bigger than my current TransAM with a 36 Float. And plan on running it with a 140 Revelation so the ETT and wheelbase of the 20L is starting to look super long, over 26" ETT and 46"+ WB. And I would only be able to run a 50mm stem on the 20L as everything else would be too stretched out, and as I've learned on the TransAM with a 50mm stem, climbing is no fun at all with such short stems.

    I'm going to run the frame with a Thomson 410 setback post and play around with either a 70mm or 90mm Thomson X4 stem that I have here, along with some nice flat Sunline V1 762 bars, mathching blue, just like eauxgod (I have a feeling we'll have pretty matching builds).
    Ain't ordered mine yet, still scrimping & saving.

    I'm 6' 3" & 34" inseams.
    I went to a local shop to sit on a 20R stock complete the other day & felt like I was on top of the bars, so I was planning on the 20L with a 70mm? stem.
    I'm gonna have to go back & have another sit.....
    Trailwrecker at large

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    Quote Originally Posted by lubes17319 View Post
    Ain't ordered mine yet, still scrimping & saving.

    I'm 6' 3" & 34" inseams.
    I went to a local shop to sit on a 20R stock complete the other day & felt like I was on top of the bars, so I was planning on the 20L with a 70mm? stem.
    I'm gonna have to go back & have another sit.....
    Interesting. But the 20L just looks so long on paper, especially with a 140mm fork. I've never had a bike with a 26"+ ETT, I don't want to lose the nimble feeling of steering. And like I said before, with such a long ETT of the 20L, I couldn't see running anything longer than a 60mm stem. People taller than us are saying the 20L is a long bike and I know of a person similar to my height switching from a 20L to a 20 frame saying it's still a big frame. And he was on top of the bars on the 20L:, so go figure. Hopefully I made the right choice, and coming from a smaller cockpit TransAM, I'm quite used to a smaller bike, but want something slightly bigger now, but not two sizes too big if you know what I'm saying.

    I received my 20" frame, stuck the 140mm Revelation fork in there, clamped on a 90mm Thomson stem and inserted the Thomson post as well and with a rough measurement, I have about an 1.25-1.5" more of cockpit room than my current TransAM. If I'll need more, I can achieve about .6" more with a setback Thomson post anyway.

    The top of the feeling bars I feel might be due to the stock 60mm stem that's on these bikes, it's all good for downhill, but for everyday riding, I'm going to stick with 70/80/90mm stems. I would give the 20" another try, but with a slightly longer stem. Looking at Specialized frames in this segment but with full suspension, both 26" and 29", stem lengths for similar ETT and reach are 90mm for L and XL, and 105mm for the XXL.


    And btw to the current Honzo owners, did you rust-proof your frames?
    Last edited by eurospek; 02-15-2012 at 11:08 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    And btw to the current Honzo owners, did you rust-proof your frames?
    I did.

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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    That setup is exactly what I have. What fork are you going to run? I ask because my fork knobs clear the down tube by about 1-2mm and I'd hate for you to have issues on your build. I'm running a Fox F29 120mm Tapered.

    The headset with the tallest bottom cup is the RWC. It will give you a 15mm bottom stack compared to the 12mm Cane Creek. Another alternative is the FSA Orbit at 13.4mm and Chris King at 14.8mm. Basically, the Cane Creek has the very lowest bottom stack. Also, Rockshox forks run 8mm longer than Fox equivalents, at least the 29ers do..
    Ordered a Cane Creek 40 headset, w/ tall upper so I'm not running a stack load of spacers, but I put on the fork into the frame and clearance is almost none if you take into account the 12mm stack height.

    Browsing the German bike forum I came across the Hope lower cup with a stack height of 14mm according to Hope UK and it sure looks taller than the CC40. Problem is it's a new item and no retailer in the USA carries it. Thankfully Dropn'Zone put in an order for me with Hope USA which will get it from the UK.

    It's Hope HSCH model number and looks like this:


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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    I did.
    How?

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    ...did you rust proof your frames?

    Observed:


    Concluded:

    Last edited by JulianPeeters; 02-18-2012 at 01:06 AM. Reason: fixed images

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    That's a lot of mud! How'd you get it all in there? Were you riding without a seat?

    I like the idea of rustproofing your frame, but doesn't Kona guarantee their frames for life? With a guarantee like that, I would just wait and see. I don't think it would ever rust bad enough to result in failure unless you live and ride in the wet very often. Guess I'm fortunate to live in socal where we don't have that problem.

  101. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by JulianPeeters View Post

    Observed:


    Concluded:
    Out here in the high desert, a steel frame would probably last 40+ years without any real attention, although I always wipe mine down after her bath!

    I've seen steel water tanks go over 30 years between re-coats.

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    That's a lot of mud! How'd you get it all in there? Were you riding without a seat?
    Haha, riding is way more fun with a seat. And that's rust, not mud (luckily not my bike). Santa Barbara is pretty rusty, being right on the coast, but I tend to agree that the idea of rust-proofing is more critical on thin-walled race frames.

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    Dinglespeed...

    Just one of those bikes you love to play around with. Off with the drivetrain and on with a Hammerschmidt!

    22/36 with a 22t in the back so far.





    -D

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    Figure this is a good place to ask.
    Looking for my first 29er for all purpose use, mostly trails with some agressive riding, up and downhill, you name it. If you've seen the 29er forum you might have seen my thread, I was stuck between some XC HTs (giant xtc 1, Scott scale elite) and a FS XC (last years Trek HiFi plus). However, I liked the idea of a tough AM type frame.

    Fast forward to today, I went into a new LBS and see a new Honzo sitting, my size and looking sharp. The dude said he didn't know why they had it, and would be willing to let it go for 1575. Here is my dilemma, is getting a AM this agressive with a 1x9 going to be overkill? Would I be better suited for my first bike to be XC?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluidworks View Post
    Figure this is a good place to ask.
    Looking for my first 29er for all purpose use, mostly trails with some agressive riding, up and downhill, you name it. If you've seen the 29er forum you might have seen my thread, I was stuck between some XC HTs (giant xtc 1, Scott scale elite) and a FS XC (last years Trek HiFi plus). However, I liked the idea of a tough AM type frame.

    Fast forward to today, I went into a new LBS and see a new Honzo sitting, my size and looking sharp. The dude said he didn't know why they had it, and would be willing to let it go for 1575. Here is my dilemma, is getting a AM this agressive with a 1x9 going to be overkill? Would I be better suited for my first bike to be XC?
    I can do everything I did on my Niner MCR9 and AIR9 faster and better on my Honzo. I'm also not using a granny, but I don't feel the geometry holds me back at all. It definitely makes descending more fun. You may struggle in the beginning going 1x9 if it's your first bike, but you will get stronger. The only question you need to ask yourself is are you all about racing, or do you just enjoy riding the entire mountain, up and down? That being said, I plan on racing on this bike and I'm sure I'll be faster than before.

    PS - I just reread your post and want to make it clear, this bike will not be overkill. If anything, you may end up upgrading the fork down the road to something even burlier. Keep in mind, the stock build is heavy in the wheels. If you end up getting it and want to buy a quality wheelset, I have set of Flows I'm selling if you're interested. I hear the Honzo stock build uses 4130 steel rims. Just kidding.

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    No, not planning on racing, plan on going over every type of terrain for hours of fun.I should say though, I do enjoy going fast too.
    Last edited by Fluidworks; 02-19-2012 at 06:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluidworks View Post
    No, not planning on racing, plan on going over every type of terrain for hours of fun.I should say though, I do enjoy going fast too.
    The Honzo is straight-up one of the most fun bikes I have ever ridden; and as an aggressive, 29" wheeled, take on a classic "Shore" (Freeride/AllMountain/SuperXC/ETC) hardtail it is definitely on the bleeding edge when it comes to headangle and chainstay length. I ride it all the same places I would ride a 6" bike and always have fun (which is really the point).

    That said; for fast singletrack (where the descents don't get super-steep and nasty), technical rolling trails, or all out climbs I definitely prefer to ride my more "XC / Trail" 29'er and if I had to choose one bike, even living where I do, I would definitely pick a 29'er hardtail with more neutral geometry.

    The Big Unit is one of the best options out there (geared or singlespeed, neutral angles, sizing options, lightweight). Personally, my Fisher Superfly (sometimes one-speed, sometimes geared) is getting replaced with a Raijin as soon as my frame arrives.

    -D

  108. #108
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    The Hammer looks so good on the Honzo.

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    Judging from the apparent gap b/t the rear tire and the seat tube as well as the fact you didn't mention having to grind a notch out of the HS back plate means you must have one of the "non-production" frames with the longer CS. Does your CS yoke look like this?



    Or this:


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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    Judging from the apparent gap b/t the rear tire and the seat tube as well as the fact you didn't mention having to grind a notch out of the HS back plate means you must have one of the "non-production" frames with the longer CS. Does your CS yoke look like this?
    Apologies, I missed your post! I do have the super-short-stayed production frame.

    I certainly had to do some "strategic warranty violating" to my Schmidt back plate.

    It was about 5-minutes on the grinder to do a good job (and then 15 minutes cleaning aluminum dust out of the mechanism because I'm a gumby).

    -D
    Last edited by DrewM; 02-20-2012 at 10:08 AM. Reason: production frame...

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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    Judging from the apparent gap b/t the rear tire and the seat tube as well as the fact you didn't mention having to grind a notch out of the HS back plate means you must have one of the "non-production" frames with the longer CS. Does your CS yoke look like this?
    Apologies, I missed your post! I do have the super-short-stayed production frame.

    I certainly had to do some "strategic warranty violating" to my Schmidt back plate.

    It was about 5-minutes on the grinder to do a good job (and then 15 minutes cleaning aluminum dust out of the mechanism because I'm a gumby).

    -D

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    I have been thinking about getting a Honzo for some time now but I just have one concern. The rear triangle looks so skinny and weak. It looks like the welds that hold the dropouts on will snap if you drop more than a foot. Can any of you Honzo owners tell me if these concerns are legit? Maybe post some pics of the dropouts?

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    It is a tried-n-true design made of steel...I'd say no worries.
    Last edited by eauxgod; 02-26-2012 at 01:57 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by konarider906 View Post
    I have been thinking about getting a Honzo for some time now but I just have one concern. The rear triangle looks so skinny and weak. It looks like the welds that hold the dropouts on will snap if you drop more than a foot. Can any of you Honzo owners tell me if these concerns are legit? Maybe post some pics of the dropouts?
    If this is the only thing holding you back from a Honzo: Buy One.

    Definitely built to last, I have beaten the crap out of mine, in my experience (I work at a -among other brands- Kona dealer) Kona has been fantastic to deal with in terms of standing behind their product (definitely better then most).

    -D

  115. #115
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    finally!

    It's finally here!

    I'm still waiting on a few parts, so for now, a teaser:

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    Stoked to see it!!

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    awesome! Which brakes and rotor do you have mounted?

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    Fair Review

    Kona Honzo 29er Review - BikeRadar

    This is a fair review of the Honzo that points out "perceived" shortcomings, but a custom build can make this the perfect bike for many. However, if you don't have the fitness, the lack of a front derailleur can be a deal breaker. Here's how I remedied the reviewer's issues with the Honzo.

    Chain guide drag- I use a jump-stop. It's lighter, friction-free, and silent.

    Lack of a front derailleur- I don't run one anyway and even switched from a 36t cassette to a 34t.

    Lowish BB height- You may have pedal strikes the first couple rides, but the benefits of a low BB are awesome. I run a 2.4 Ardent in the rear and that raises it a little, but it's not a problem where I ride. The Chromag Surface has a 12.75" BB, but that's with a 140mm Fork. At 120mm, it would be just under 12.5".

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    Whats the biggest drops you guys have hit on the Honzo? I know its not a downhill bike but you occasionally encounter drops on the trail and I want to know I'm not gonna snap those wimpy looking dropouts. And if i were to snap the welds, would that be covered by the warranty?

  120. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by konarider906 View Post
    Whats the biggest drops you guys have hit on the Honzo? I know its not a downhill bike but you occasionally encounter drops on the trail and I want to know I'm not gonna snap those wimpy looking dropouts. And if i were to snap the welds, would that be covered by the warranty?
    I'm about 200lbs and do 3 foot drops regularly no problems. I was worried about my carbon riser bar and just now switched to a wider aluminum bar. I've never been worried about the dropouts failing. The design seems beefy to me. The force of a drop should be vertical and the steel plate is 1/4" x 1/2" wide. In my mind it would be difficult to cause those to fail. Now a hit directly sideways may bend them, but that's an unlikely impact. Post up a picture of a burly dropout so readers have something for comparison. I'm guessing a dirtjumper must have a good design.

    Also, Kona has a lifetime warranty for defects and a crash replacement program. But, if you're hucking off 6 foot drops, this is probably the wrong bike for you.

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    Dropouts on my 2008 Kona Shred.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-img_0165.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-img_0166.jpg  


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    Quote Originally Posted by konarider906 View Post
    Dropouts on my 2008 Kona Shred.
    That looks beefy, but how much thicker is it at the weld area? I think that would be the weakest link. I just back from a ride and did a feature I haven't done before. It's a man-made wooden drop that's between 3-4 feet high. It went well except that I burped a little air and have a wobble in my flow rim.

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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    That looks beefy, but how much thicker is it at the weld area? I think that would be the weakest link. I just back from a ride and did a feature I haven't done before. It's a man-made wooden drop that's between 3-4 feet high. It went well except that I burped a little air and have a wobble in my flow rim.
    Its pretty thick at the welds, but I am pretty satisfied that the Honzo will hold up to the stuff that I ride. I wish I just got back from a ride....we just got about three feet of snow in the past day and a half... And what is this "crash replacement"? Is that a real thing?

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    Quote Originally Posted by konarider906 View Post
    Its pretty thick at the welds, but I am pretty satisfied that the Honzo will hold up to the stuff that I ride. I wish I just got back from a ride....we just got about three feet of snow in the past day and a half... And what is this "crash replacement"? Is that a real thing?
    Crash replacement is a customer loyalty thing. They give you a deep discount for staying loyal and buying another frame from them.

    Snow? Crazy, it was 89 degrees today in San Diego. I had to wait until 2 hours before sunset and it finally dropped to about 80 degress.

  125. #125
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    Started with assorted stuff from a 2010 Rig, along with a few AM-oriented goodies...


    The guy driving the big brown truck just rang the doorbell, Oh joy!

    20L frame = 6 lbs, 12 oz



    Sling some wrenches for about 90 minutes...


    Just need to get steerer tube to my height & set the fork sag


    RWC extender cup is like a mini-lift kit


    Wow, that number shocked me!


    20L frame
    Marzocchi 44 TST fork, 140mm
    Bontrager Duster SS wheelset w/15mm Dimension front hub
    Specialized Purgatory, 2.4"
    RWC extender bottom cup/Cane Creek 40ZS44 short cap
    Sunline AM stem, 65mm
    Sunline VS One bars, 745mm
    old-skool (circa 2000) Avid Speed Dial TT levers
    BB7 calipers
    Alligator Windcutter rotors, 203mm
    Bontrager Big Earl post
    Bontrager Race cranks, 175mm
    Surly ring, 32t
    Surly cassette cog, 20t
    Trailwrecker at large

  126. #126
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    Very nice! Glad to see another 20L out there. Any rides yet?
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    awesome! Which brakes and rotor do you have mounted?
    Hope Tech M4's and a 183mm Hope floating sawtooth rotor.
    2017 Transmission Smuggler
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  128. #128
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    Nope, just came in from the garage....but I'll get it out for a test flight over the w/end.




    Is it the w/end yet?!?
    Trailwrecker at large

  129. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by lubes17319 View Post
    Wow, that number shocked me!
    Shocked at how heavy it is or how how light it is?
    Nice build. I particularly like the wheels. That's how I'd build mine if given the chance
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    WOW, nice looking bike and build, very colour coordinated and blingy

    Seriously, you call that "plenty" of clearance If that's "plenty" of room to you you obviously don't ever ride in the mud.


    I appreciate the picture for sure. It tells me that there isn't enough room for running those tires on the trails around here. We have serious mud that would easily lock the wheel up completely. Still a tempting frame though...

  131. #131
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    6.12lbs for a 20", long frame is really not that bad, considering some "light" 29er frames are 5lbs and not built to the same burly standards as the Honzo.

    Most of the weight comes from the tires and the fork.

    Still, it's impressive that there are 160mm all-mountain full suspension bike like the carbon Enduro, Nomad, and others that tip the scales with 2x10 at or around 30lbs.

    Maybe Kona should do a carbon Honzo?

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    What do people think of the complete's of these bikes? I was going to build my own, but looking at the build Im not that far off from the stock (and much higher in price). The wheels are question to me, never loved wtb's. Ive always been fine with mid range bontragers on my 26 under a lot of tension, but I do weigh about 230 right now at 6'4", and have a tendency to brake every fork I have ever owned (including an older revelation 120 uturn, QR).

    Ive always ridden slalom/4x like steel hardtails as trail bikes, suits what I love about mountain biking. Maybe I'll even give it a go for a race or two.

  133. #133
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    ^ The only thing decent on the stock build IMO is the fork, brakes, tires. Everything else could be had lighter, and not too mention the outdated standard crank. The stock wheels are also pretty heavy.

    Being 6'4, did you decide on 20 or 20L?

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    Thanks. cranks was the other concern, who still uses isis? figured id change em out for slx if I went complete. The other concern about going with my own build is time. Im a grad student and want to be riding ASAP as an escape, dont want to be concerned with build issues. I also have a cockpit setup I like that I never got to install on my last bike before it got stolen.

    I was thinking 20 reg. my last frame, ns surge (26") was 24.5, and felt long, although good long, fit me perfect. will it be different on a 29"? The surge had a 44" WB, the 20 reg will be 45.2, or 46.1 for 20L, seems like a better introductory for 29.

    Otherwise, Geo seems pretty close to my last 26in hardtail. Used for slalom, fast trail rides, blasting corners with flat pedals. Any thoughts though? Should I be scaling up my top tube length with the scale up in wheel size?

    Also, I'll be riding trails in massachusetts. Generally of the flowy type, but with some tech at parts. I will be glad to give up tech ability for more fun handling on the flowing stuff. If it works well at the kingdom trails in VT i will be happy.

  135. #135
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    I rethinking the idea of the 20Long, any thoughts on this? will it be no fun on the tight stuff? Like i said, Im 6'4", riding Massachusetts, and some kingdom trails.

    Also, I imagine it isnt an issue, but how is the toe clearence on these? Sat on a 19 recently and my toe was buzzing a lot. I ride flats and tend to be a bit forward on my pedals.

  136. #136
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    Here's what I can add, I'm 6'4" 32/33 pant inseam and originally ordered the 20" Honzo frame, and that's after spending days comparing geometry specs to other 29er AMHT frames and to my last Transition TransAM 19.5" 26er (24.5" ETT with a Float 36 and that bike always felt fun for the first hour on trail, then always quite cramped and I felt always sitting on top of it).

    The other 29ers I was looking at were the Canfield Yelli Screamy, Transition TransAM 29er, Banshee Paradox, Chromag Surface and the 2Souls QH/Slim Jim (which I'm still looking to buy the frame if they get the ball rolling on the XXL size due to tubing sourcing problems), I decided to go with the Honzo, great price, lifetime warranty, and geometry looks great on paper too, short CS, slack HA, steep SA.

    Wanting a slightly bigger bike than the TransAM, I figured the 20" frame would suffice. When I got it, I kinda mocked it up with the wheels, 140 Revelation fork, 70mm Thomson X4 stem and setback Thomson post and I sat on it. Wasn't that impressed. Riding position was still similar to the TransAM, felt kinda on top of the bars and cramped. Switched to a 90mm Thomson X4 stem and it was slightly better but that defeats the whole purpose of this frame, which begs for a short stem.

    Returned the 20" frame and got a 20L. Did the same thing with the mock up, but now with a 50mm Thomson X4 stem, 750mm+ bars and Reverb post (zero setback) it feels a whole lot better. Just enough room without being stretched out at all as a 26" ETT would lead you to believe. The extra inch in ETT helps a lot, especially with these newer AM frames requiring short stems for a fun ride.

    The WB of the 20L isn't that long anyway, only an inch longer than the 20" frame, and only .50" to 1.00" of the other frames I was looking at as well.

    As I've learned with this bike and studying the geometry charts, they only tell you half the story, the other is told when you actually sit on the bike and get a real feel for it.

    Hopefully I can post some pics next week when I'll finish my build finally. Last package from Hucknroll is coming tomorrow, and I still need to rust proof my frame.

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    Nice write up...I agree with you on the short stem. These bikes with slack head angles balance out best with a short stem which puts you behind the wheel for point and shoot handling.

    Question about the rust proofing...do you think it's necessary? I believe the frame is dipped in zinc, which should make it pretty well protected.

  138. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post

    Question about the rust proofing...do you think it's necessary? I believe the frame is dipped in zinc, which should make it pretty well protected.
    A $15 can of JP Weigle Frame Saver is better save than sorry. My last steel frame was ED-coated inside and out, but I'm going to spray this one for a piece of mind.

  139. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Here's what I can add, I'm 6'4" 32/33 pant inseam and originally ordered the 20" Honzo frame, and that's after spending days comparing geometry specs to other 29er AMHT frames and to my last Transition TransAM 19.5" 26er (24.5" ETT with a Float 36 and that bike always felt fun for the first hour on trail, then always quite cramped and I felt always sitting on top of it).

    The other 29ers I was looking at were the Canfield Yelli Screamy, Transition TransAM 29er, Banshee Paradox, Chromag Surface and the 2Souls QH/Slim Jim (which I'm still looking to buy the frame if they get the ball rolling on the XXL size due to tubing sourcing problems), I decided to go with the Honzo, great price, lifetime warranty, and geometry looks great on paper too, short CS, slack HA, steep SA.

    Wanting a slightly bigger bike than the TransAM, I figured the 20" frame would suffice. When I got it, I kinda mocked it up with the wheels, 140 Revelation fork, 70mm Thomson X4 stem and setback Thomson post and I sat on it. Wasn't that impressed. Riding position was still similar to the TransAM, felt kinda on top of the bars and cramped. Switched to a 90mm Thomson X4 stem and it was slightly better but that defeats the whole purpose of this frame, which begs for a short stem.

    Returned the 20" frame and got a 20L. Did the same thing with the mock up, but now with a 50mm Thomson X4 stem, 750mm+ bars and Reverb post (zero setback) it feels a whole lot better. Just enough room without being stretched out at all as a 26" ETT would lead you to believe. The extra inch in ETT helps a lot, especially with these newer AM frames requiring short stems for a fun ride.

    The WB of the 20L isn't that long anyway, only an inch longer than the 20" frame, and only .50" to 1.00" of the other frames I was looking at as well.

    As I've learned with this bike and studying the geometry charts, they only tell you half the story, the other is told when you actually sit on the bike and get a real feel for it.

    Hopefully I can post some pics next week when I'll finish my build finally. Last package from is coming tomorrow, and I still need to rust proof my frame.
    Awesome, thanks so much for the write up. I honestly haven't had time to do that amount of research, or any knowledge of 29er geo's. I am leaning towards the long now. I have a feeling the 16.2 chainstays will make it manageable. also, they are the same length I had on my NS surge 26" now that I think if it, didnt realize how crazy short they were able to get these on 29".

  140. #140
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    This is from Joe @ Kona when asked about prepping the frame:

    "The tubing isnít treated, Iíd recommend us J.P. Wiegleís Framesaver before building."

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    I'm about the same dimensions as eurospek & I'm sitting pretty comfy & upright on the 20L (65mm stem, 745mm bars, 140mm fork & RWC extender cup). I sat on a built 20r & it felt as if I was gonna go OTB just sitting still, or smash my knees into the bars when pedaling.

    As for the CS length/rear-center positioning, here's a quick comparison of how my XL Karate Monkey & 20L Honzo measured out:

    BB-rear hub / center of saddle - rear hub
    KM.............17.5" / 7.5"
    Honzo.........16.5" / 6.5"
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  142. #142
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    Quote Originally Posted by scurry4 View Post
    Awesome, thanks so much for the write up. I honestly haven't had time to do that amount of research, or any knowledge of 29er geo's. I am leaning towards the long now. I have a feeling the 16.2 chainstays will make it manageable. also, they are the same length I had on my NS surge 26" now that I think if it, didnt realize how crazy short they were able to get these on 29".
    Yup, these chainstay lengths are about the shortest that I've seen in this category of bike without going custom.

    And if you're buying frameset only, check out Bikeman.com, they have all sizes in stock and free shipping.

    I got lucky with my 20L frame that I found new for $475 from Sellwood Cycle Repair.
    Last edited by eurospek; 03-14-2012 at 04:50 PM.

  143. #143
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    Ive now got a 20L complete on the way to the shop, really pumped, got some other parts ready to order as well, SLX crankset, thomson stem and post. Going to give my bontrager rhythms a shot for bars, and my go to selle seat. Other than that, going to give the parts on the there a shot.

    If anyone is looking for this bike in the northeast, JRA cycles has an 18 frame in stock for a pretty good deal, and have a 20 complete on the way, cool guys too. I was ready to buy through them, untill I found a way to grab it through my shop. Also some different pedals, unless anyone knows if there ok?

    Also, do people really run 8in rotors on the front of there AM 29ers? seems to be common, but strange to me.

  144. #144
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    Excellent switches to the stock build. You'll have a great bike!

    I ran 8 inch rotors on my previous bike (on the 26er) but kicked back to 7, kinda overkill and always made slight noise, still on the fence of what I'll do, but probably run 8 on the front again, and 7 in the back.

    And if you're looking at changing saddles, I might pick that stock WTB Vigo saddle from you to try.

  145. #145
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    I bought a Honzo about 6 weeks ago and have been riding it pretty exclusively ever since, and have concluded that its a very worthy bike.It was bought as a complete, the previous owner was a bike shop owner who bought it and rode it about 5 times. He had replaced the cranks with a dh e13 crank which was a nice upgrade that I didnt have to mess with. I rode it basically stock for about a month but then went ss and replaced the stock post with a set back Thompson. That made a big difference (the post). At 5'11 the setback post helped a lot. SS is what it is. Im running 32/21 which works fine for me. Where i ride im either climbing or bombing down so gears arent all that necessary. The stock configuration just felt like it had a lot of extra weight and so much drag. I believe it weighed 31 lbs stock (upgraded cranks) without pedals. I havent weighed it since i went SS but I will weigh it again when i get my King Flow front wheel on the bike. My current quiver includes a 20 inch KM and a 19 inch dw link 5 spot, so the Honzo is kind of in between as far as sizing and function goes. The Honzo outright shreds anything remotely downhill. I was looking for a new go to bike to replace the aging KM. The Honzo is an absolute blast and it actually feels faster in a lot of rough terrain than my 5 spot. As long as youre not expecting a lightweight bike it will be hard to be disappointed with the Honzo.
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    Quote Originally Posted by munstro View Post
    I bought a Honzo about 6 weeks ago and have been riding it pretty exclusively ever since, and have concluded that its a very worthy bike.It was bought as a complete, the previous owner was a bike shop owner who bought it and rode it about 5 times. He had replaced the cranks with a dh e13 crank which was a nice upgrade that I didnt have to mess with. I rode it basically stock for about a month but then went ss and replaced the stock post with a set back Thompson. That made a big difference (the post). At 5'11 the setback post helped a lot. SS is what it is. Im running 32/21 which works fine for me. Where i ride im either climbing or bombing down so gears arent all that necessary. The stock configuration just felt like it had a lot of extra weight and so much drag. I believe it weighed 31 lbs stock (upgraded cranks) without pedals. I havent weighed it since i went SS but I will weigh it again when i get my King Flow front wheel on the bike. My current quiver includes a 20 inch KM and a 19 inch dw link 5 spot, so the Honzo is kind of in between as far as sizing and function goes. The Honzo outright shreds anything remotely downhill. I was looking for a new go to bike to replace the aging KM. The Honzo is an absolute blast and it actually feels faster in a lot of rough terrain than my 5 spot. As long as youre not expecting a lightweight bike it will be hard to be disappointed with the Honzo.
    Nice write up. You can get the Honzo below 28lbs w/ gears and still have a stout build. Mine weighs 27lbs. 11oz. (medium frame).

  147. #147
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    Hello it is with pleasure that I read your discussion on the Kona Honzo.
    I'm really huge and powerful 6'7 "(202cm) / 350pounds
    According to Kona, the Kona Honzo can support my weight.
    However, I have a question about the frame size 20L.
    My inseam is 100cm / 39inch. Do you think the frame 20L will suit me?

    is there any people with the same morphology as me?

    Thank you in advance for your answers

    Good evening,

  148. #148
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    Quote Originally Posted by lusss View Post
    Hello it is with pleasure that I read your discussion on the Kona Honzo.
    I'm really huge and powerful 6'7 "(202cm) / 350pounds
    According to Kona, the Kona Honzo can support my weight.
    However, I have a question about the frame size 20L.
    My inseam is 100cm / 39inch. Do you think the frame 20L will suit me?

    is there any people with the same morphology as me?

    Thank you in advance for your answers

    Good evening,
    MrTall posting here is 6'7" and it fits him fine.

    Anyone got a Kona Honzo? ę Singletrack Forum

  149. #149
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    If you have a 39" inseam, it seems you have pretty long legs even for your height. You might need an exceptionally long seatpost, as the 20L just has a 20" seat tube.

    A rough measurement for my 36" inseam shows I have 32" from bb to seat, meaning I need 11" or so of seatpost exposed. By the same calculations, you'd need 14+, which is longer than most posts I believe.

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  150. #150
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    Any of you guys finding the BB too low at 12.2"? This is the lowest BB from all the 29er AM frames I'm looking at.
    I've smacked my pedals more than I can remember since pedaling this bike. (SS, 175mm cranks & Wellgo platforms)
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  151. #151
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    Pretty fun bike, about 28lbs on my suspect bathroom scale.

  152. #152
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    ^ That looks awesome!!!

  153. #153
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    Where is yours?

  154. #154
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    Quote Originally Posted by eauxgod View Post
    Where is yours?
    I'll have pictures this week. Still haven't gotten around to building this thing.

  155. #155
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    Finally got mine built up! No glamor shots yet, took these on the way to the first ride. Too much snow to have fun right now :-(

    EDIT: 26lbs 5oz with pedals.






    Last edited by noot; 03-29-2012 at 12:08 PM.
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  156. #156
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    You might want to route that brake line inside of the fork leg, no? What's that rear tire? Looks beefy.

    Awesome Rubicon.

  157. #157
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post


    You might want to route that brake line inside of the fork leg, no? What's that rear tire? Looks beefy.

    Awesome Rubicon.
    Thanks

    Was intending to run it inside, but the hose guide is really angled and would make it tough to run it anywhere but where it is... I'll have to take a closer look though.

    Rear tire is an Ikon... I'm seriously consider grabbing a set of either Mountain King 2.4's or Hans Dampfs, but it's gonna be tough gaining 1.5lbs!
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    Looks great as is, but it's an AM machine that begs to be pushed hard...I vote for the Hans Dampfs all the way!

    I'm running dual ply Minion on the rear and single ply up front on my Steely. I didn't even try to weigh the difference. I can certainly feel it when lifting the bike, but you get used to it. The benefits on the DH are worth it to me - especially on the rear. I can run lower pressures for traction purposes with improved rim protection.

  159. #159
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    Actually that is how the fork is designed to have the hose run on the inside, angle is not extreme, also do the same for the rear brake hose - keeping them inside helps avoid them getting snagged by a branch, debris etc and being ripped off.

    As to the tyres, couldn't agree more that something like the Hans suits this type of bike and will really make it come alive, don't be a WW and neuter such a nice bike because of it.

    Quote Originally Posted by noot View Post
    Was intending to run it inside, but the hose guide is really angled and would make it tough to run it anywhere but where it is... I'll have to take a closer look though.

    Rear tire is an Ikon... I'm seriously consider grabbing a set of either Mountain King 2.4's or Hans Dampfs, but it's gonna be tough gaining 1.5lbs!
    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post


    You might want to route that brake line inside of the fork leg, no? What's that rear tire? Looks beefy.
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold
    You're doing mtbr wrong, you're supposed to get increasingly offended by the implications that you're doing ANYTHING wrong.

  160. #160
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    I'll try to resolve the hose routing tonight. It just flows so nicely like this! The rear Caliper hose comes out the "wrong" side to route inside the frame, but I'll see :-)

    As for tires: mk2, hd, or ardent? Trails are dirt, roots, sometimes wet, no rocks.

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  161. #161
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    Hans Dampfs

    I'm running Hans Dampfs, Trail Star compound front, and Pace Star compound rear. I only have one ride on them, and I'm coming from Ardents 2.4s front and rear. I'm really liking them so far. They're about $15 more than Ardents. Cornering, traction, and braking is better. They may roll a little slower, but I can't be sure. That's how negligible it is. What really stands out is the slow rebounding properties of the rubber. I have the tires inflated properly, but they absorb the terrain so well that it feels like they're under inflated. The tires absorb instead of deflect and that makes you go faster because the bike feels planted. Volume seems to be the same as the Ardent. They should wear well since I put the harder compound Pace Star on the rear, and the softer Trail Star on the front.

    UPDATE 4/11/12

    After 4-5 rides on the the Hans Dampfs, they are showing premature wear in the form of torn side knobs. Many of the cornering knobs are torn or beginning to tear at the point where the knob meets the casing. I no longer recommend these tires. I was able to get store credit and return mine to Universalcycles.com, excellent customer service. By the way, both the trail stair and pace star had this problem. Also, the pace star which is supposed to be a longer lasting compound wore notably faster than my Ardents. Not a good value in my opinion. The performance of the Hans Dampfs is excellent, but at way too steep a price. Maxxis needs to make a 29" Minion.
    Last edited by carabao; 04-11-2012 at 10:43 AM.

  162. #162
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    More or less room in the back vs the 2.4 Ardent? *

  163. #163
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    Hans dampfs ordered. All they have is trailstar, so we'll see :-)

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  164. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    More or less room in the back vs the 2.4 Ardent? *
    A little more room because they're the same width, but the ardent has a rounder profile, and/or it's a taller tire by 1/8-1/4 inch. The HDs don't get as close to the chainstay yoke as the Ardents. If you're worried about clearance/mud I would definitely get the HDs. I have read that they're better at shedding mud than the Ardents, but we don't have much mud in San Diego, CA.

  165. #165
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    Bikes look sweeeet. I think a new honzo frame is calling my name. Does anyone have info on steerer tube length for a 16in frame? I have a line on a fork with 7 1/8'' cut steerer tube, will it work??

  166. #166
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    ^ KONAWORLD
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  167. #167
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    Well i got my front wheel built, and got a weight on the shop scale. Came in a little under 28 lbs, which is ok because i never intended it to be an xc race bike. I really just wanted a fun, durable, grab and go SS. Im pretty much done upgrading the bike, there are a few things i could do to drop a few raisins but im in no hurry. I too am still running the geared hanger, the shop i called wanted full retail over 30 bones for the SS specific. Ill get it eventually. I rode it a few days ago after riding my 26er and i actually got that riding inside the bike feel again. I havent had any real issues with pedal strikes, sure it occasionally happens but not enough to raise any concerns. I also briefly rode a L yelli screamy yesterday, it definitely felt different than my Honzo. As far as recommending sizes goes, i would really encourage test riding before making an order. I kind of bought mine on a whim, but i am happy with the meduim. My previous SS is an older skid mark brown 20 inch karate monkey which is a big frame. Heres a rundown of my build:
    Chris King/Stans Flow tubeless front & rear
    Maxxis Ardent 2.4 & 2.25
    Thompson stem and laid back post
    WTB saddle
    TBar 30 handlebars
    FSA headset
    E13 the Hive cranks and BB (some DH model) & 32 tooth chainring w/ spot brand bash
    22 tooth Surly cog
    Avid Elixir 1 brakes
    Stock Kona grips which are already worn

  168. #168
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    Looks great! What fork do you have on there?

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  169. #169
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    Oh yeah I forgot to list the fork. Its the stock Rock Shox Revelation 120. On my ride today i was thinking of how the Canfield felt different that my Kona. The Canfield kind of reminded me of being on a full squish DH bike that is well into its sag. I think the Kona feels more upright. Im going to move more headset spacers to the top of the stem in order to achieve a lower the handlebar height. Setting the Honzo up is still a work in progress but it sure is a hoot to ride! For some reason when im riding singlespeed i just want to keep going. Twice now in the past few weeks ive done 2 rides in one because im having so much fun and i just seem to have extra energy with the more efficient singlespeed setup. Happy riding from Az.

  170. #170
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    I just ordered the Honzo 20"! This will be my first 29er.
    I'm jumping straight into the deep end! I went about this against all the common wisdom for buying a bike. I haven't tried the bike nor have I ever been on a 29er!
    Hopefully everything works out in my favour.

    The bike is stock.
    But I do think I will be trying to source a 28T ring so that my legs and head won't explode while going up hill. I am hoping that the stock Gravity StepUp crank has granny ring inserts on the spider and that by putting a chainring in that spot won't mess the chainline up too much. I guess I could use spacers on the BB. I am also going to install a Blackspire Granny God bash when I do get a 28T ring.
    By doing this I probably won't be able to run a proper chain guide unless it is modified somehow. Or I could just shorten the chain and get a short cage RD to take up the slack in the chain.

    I also have a Reverb which will be put onto the Honzo.

    I'm excited to see how this experiment turns out!
    I built up a 26" hardtail last season from a frame that I had kicking around for several years and was reminded of how fun it was to ride a hardtail. Although, it did have a granny ring. That is really my only big worry about riding the Honzo in my area because it is only a single ring. There are lots of long straight up climbs and every year at the start of the bike season I struggle even with a granny gear! But the price of the Honzo was sweet so I couldn't pass it up!

    I was told that I should have the Honzo sometime by the end of next week. I'll post pics once I get the bike built up. Unfortunately I won't be able to ride it seeing as where I live is still solidly in the grips of Winter. There's still well over a meter of snow in the valley!

    Mmmmm, new bike!!

  171. #171
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    My build

    My Honzo arrived this morning! I spent the afternoon building it up.

    Size: 20"
    Spec:
    Stock except for a few swapped parts - (Canadian stock - not sure if the bike is specced differently in other countries)
    Chromag OS bar
    X9 RD
    X7 shifter
    Reverb seatpost
    Time Atac pedals (waiting on CB Mallet 2 to arrive)
    ODI Rogue grips

    Rider stats: 6'6", 250lbs geared up (I went with the regular 20" rather than the 20"L because of how and where I ride. I'm not into being super stretched out on a bike if I am planning on jumping, dropping and riding stunts on this bike.)

    Not sure about weight. I'd guess that it is somewhere in the mid to high 30lbs range.

    I changed out the shifter/RD because the stock Shimano Alivio shifter pod could not be moved outboard of the brake lever. This led to me having to move my hand inward a fair distance to change gears.

    I was looking to change up the 32T chain ring but when I pulled the bike out of the box I saw that the Gravity Step Up crank does not have any inserts to bolt a granny ring on it. Also the ISIS BB wouldn't have been able to have been spaced out properly for the chain line.
    If I find myself pushing this bike up hill more than riding it I'll look into buying a different crankset and BB to allow me to install a smaller chain ring with the proper chain line spacing.

    The stock Avid Elixir 1 front brake needs to bled. After adjusting the throw on the lever several times it still ends up having way more throw than I like. So a bleed it needs!

    I've only had a chance to ride it around the neighbourhood. And.... it rides like a.... bike!
    This is my first ever time on a 29er and I was kinda expecting rainbows and unicorns to appear once I started pedaling it! Oh well, I guess you can't really believe all the hype you read on the interwebz!
    I'm still very excited to get this bike out on the trails because it is a brand new bike and it is a style of bike that I've never ridden before. I just have to wait for the trails to melt out!

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-p4134711.jpg

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-p4134712.jpg
    Last edited by RideEverything; 04-13-2012 at 08:15 PM.

  172. #172
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    Nice! Should be a great bike for whistler. Wanna take me on a tour when I head your way this summer? I've never been.

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  173. #173
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    Quote Originally Posted by noot View Post
    Nice! Should be a great bike for whistler. Wanna take me on a tour when I head your way this summer? I've never been.
    Sure, I'll show you around. Message me closer to your visit date and we can organize something.

    I am not an epic XC kinda rider. So, if that is what you're looking for you're going to have to find someone else to show you around. Straight up I'll tell you that I refuse to ride Comfortably Numb again! It was worth riding the trail but I don't need to ever do it again!

  174. #174
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    Initial Impressions

    I've had a couple of short rides on the Honzo so take what I have to say with a grain of salt.
    This is my very first time ever riding a 29er!

    My first ride was into town on the road and paved multi-use trails. About 10km each way. The thing I noticed was that it was very easy to run out of gears. This wheel size makes it easy to go faster on smooth terrain (paved).

    The second ride I did was out on a trail closest to my neighbourhood. Only about a third of the trail was dirt/rideable and the rest was under about a half meter to meter of snow.
    While riding the dirt portion of the trail I did notice what is always stated in the forums/discussions about 29ers, that the bigger wheels smooth out the bumps.
    As for climbing the bike seemed to have more traction even with some portions of the trail being slick. I also found it much easier to plow through the deep snow where I think a 26" would have become stuck.
    On the more open sections of trail it was easy to keep the speed up. A very similar feeling to when I was riding on the road.

    But I'm not sure if any of these observations are because of the 29" wheel size or because of what I've read and expected how this wheels size should ride. More time on the bike will stop me from super-over-analyzing how the ride feels and just ride the bike!
    Obviously I've only had a very short time on this bike so far and these are just my initial impressions.

    Here are some pics of the bike at rest while out on my "trail ride".
    The section of trail that was clear isn't very tech nor does it have much elevation change. However, it was very fun to get out on dirt on a brand new bike after being off a bike for 6 months!
    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-imag0623.jpg

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-imag0625.jpg Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-imag0627.jpg

    I'm planning to go to Squamish, where the trails have been rideable for quite some time, for a proper ride at the end of the week. Maybe with this ride I'll be able to tell if the 29er is just hocus pocus or it'll actually give me real bike super powers !

  175. #175
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    Just built up the Honzo on Friday and had two great rides over the weekend.



    Build:
    18" Honzo
    Marzocchi 44 micro ti
    Sun Ringle Chargers
    WTB Bronson tires
    Sunline bar and stem
    Formula the One brakes
    x7 shifters and cranks
    x9 rear der.
    Blackspire stinger e-type chainguide with XT front der.
    XT cassette
    Chromag moon saddle
    Straitline pedals
    Last edited by Mad-Duck; 04-16-2012 at 07:02 PM.

  176. #176
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mad-Duck View Post
    Blackspire stinger e-type chainguide with XT front der.
    So, it can be done!
    I was thinking of setting an FD up exactly like this!

    Could you post some close-up pics of the Stinger-E where the FD is bolted on?
    Does the FD come into contact with the rear tire at all?
    What are you using as a cable stop on the seat tube for the FD? (I can't tell from the picture)
    What BB do you have and what spacers, if any, are you using to sort out the chain line?

    I was told by the Kona Tech support on the Konaworld site that it was impossible to run an FD how you have it set up!

  177. #177
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    Quote Originally Posted by RideEverything View Post
    So, it can be done!
    I was thinking of setting an FD up exactly like this!

    Could you post some close-up pics of the Stinger-E where the FD is bolted on?
    Does the FD come into contact with the rear tire at all?
    What are you using as a cable stop on the seat tube for the FD? (I can't tell from the picture)
    What BB do you have and what spacers, if any, are you using to sort out the chain line?

    I was told by the Kona Tech support on the Konaworld site that it was impossible to run an FD how you have it set up!
    I'll try to remember to get some closer pics later.

    I can't slam the wheel with this setup, but I can get it to about 16.5" while still leaving about a 1/4" of clearance from the body of the FD. The side lugs are fairly close to the cage of the FD with about 1/8" gap.

    I'm using an axiom cable stop, but problem solvers should have some that would work too.

    The bb is the one that came with the X7 cranks. I can only use the one spacer on the drive side with these cranks. Any more spacers and I can't get the cranks on tight without seizing them up. Because of that I had to take a belt sander to the chainguide plate and file down the granny gear bolts to have enough space between the chainguide and cranks. With Shimano cranks you could probably avoid all that.

    Also, the stinger guide is meant for up to a 40t chain ring, but the honzo won't allow a ring that big. With my chain line a 38t wouldn't fit either. With a 33t ring and a 36t bash guard, the derailleur was too high up and caused some chain rubbing on the front derailleur, so I drilled new holes and cut off the extra part of the guide.

    Everything works quiet well now and it makes the Honzo a much more capable trail bike for long rides.

  178. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mad-Duck View Post
    Just built up the Honzo on Friday and had two great rides over the weekend.



    Build:
    18" Honzo
    Marzocchi 44 micro ti
    Sun Ringle Chargers
    WTB Bronson tires
    Sunline bar and stem
    Formula the One breaks
    x7 shifters and cranks
    x9 rear der.
    Blackspire stinger e-type chainguide with XT front der.
    XT cassette
    Chromag moon saddle
    Straitline pedals
    Nice build!...impressive work with that front der.... I like the white rims and the white bashguard - cool and original...

    Are you running 140mm on that Marzocchi?

  179. #179
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    Quote Originally Posted by CBizzie View Post
    Nice build!...impressive work with that front der.... I like the white rims and the white bashguard - cool and original...

    Are you running 140mm on that Marzocchi?
    Thanks! Yup, they're at 140mm.

  180. #180
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    Yep those white rims look nice. Funny because i was just thinking the other day i should have gone with white Flows....

  181. #181
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    Oh look, a rainbow. Let's find that pot o' gold!


    No gold....


    ...but that'll do just fine!
    Trailwrecker at large

  182. #182
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    Ordered an 18" a few days ago, should be here in about a week or so. Super stoked on this bike since it will be my first 29er
    Already gotten a few things to replace once the bike gets here but it will stay mostly stock until I replace parts as they break/wear out.
    *UPDATE* Just got a call from the shop I ordered one through that it's here, just need to go pick it up and throw it together
    Last edited by Singlespeed McGee; 05-02-2012 at 08:47 PM.
    "So do me a favor. Find your bike, whatever kind of bike it is. And RIDE it." -Gary Fisher

  183. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mad-Duck View Post
    Just built up the Honzo on Friday and had two great rides over the weekend.



    Build:
    18" Honzo
    Marzocchi 44 micro ti
    Sun Ringle Chargers
    WTB Bronson tires
    Sunline bar and stem
    Formula the One brakes
    x7 shifters and cranks
    x9 rear der.
    Blackspire stinger e-type chainguide with XT front der.
    XT cassette
    Chromag moon saddle
    Straitline pedals
    I have been working on perfecting a similar setup after being dis-satisfied with my hammerschmidt project...

    What did you do to reinforce the Stinger to the seat tube of your bike? Under shift loads to the big(ger) ring I find there is a lot of flex (e-type stinger is meant to be hard-mounted to E-type mount on frame).

    Cheers,

    -D

  184. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrewM View Post
    I have been working on perfecting a similar setup after being dis-satisfied with my hammerschmidt project...

    What did you do to reinforce the Stinger to the seat tube of your bike? Under shift loads to the big(ger) ring I find there is a lot of flex (e-type stinger is meant to be hard-mounted to E-type mount on frame).

    Cheers,

    -D
    I didn't do anything to reinforce it. It had a little bit of flex before I cut it and drilled new holes to lower it, but it didn't seem to affect shifting. Now the holes are only about 1-2cm above the iscg tab and the bottom of the FD rests right on one of the tabs. It really doesn't have enough leverage to flex the backplate now. Even if it does flex, it would barely be able to move at all and shouldn't affect shifting in any noticeable way.

    Have about 20 hours on it so far and everything's been good. No chain rubbing in any of the gears.








  185. #185
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    That's sweet. I see the flex (ISCG'05 plate flexing) in the work stand but I haven't finished the bike so no offroad test yet.

    I will follow up with some photos once I have had it on the trail.

    Thanks for sharing.

    -D

  186. #186
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    - 2012 Kona Honzo frame, 20 Long
    - 2012 Fox 34 Talas 29 140/110 FIT RLC
    - Cane Creek 40 headset cups
    - Sun Ringle Charger Expert wheelset, sans stickers
    - 2.4 Maxxis Ardent / 2.25 Maxxis Ardent, tubeless, Stans sealant
    - Shimano SLX M665 brakes 203/180mm rotors
    - Shimano SLX M665 crank
    - Shimano XT M770 BB
    - e.13 Guidering 32T
    - Shimano SLX M662 GS rear derailleur
    - Shimano HG-61 12-36 cassette
    - Shimano SLX M660 Rapidfire shifter
    - MRP Lopes SL chainguide
    - Chromag Fubars OSX, 780mm wide, 25mm rise
    - ODI Oury lock-on grips
    - Thomson X4 50mm stem
    - 2012 Rockshox Reverb 420x125mm post
    - WTB Deva SLT saddle
    - Point1 Racing Podium pedals
    - Chromag QR seat clamp
    - Chromag QR rear wheel skewer

    31.13 lbs

    Under 30 lbs would have been nice, but the last minute component changes were so worth it IMO (the Fox 34 and the Reverb post). And it's still lighter than my previous bike, so it's all good!





    Last edited by eurospek; 05-05-2012 at 06:11 PM.

  187. #187
    the air is thin up here..
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    Beauty! About time too :P

    Sent from my SGH-I717D using Tapatalk 2
    2017 Transmission Smuggler
    2015 Kona Paddy Wagon
    www.mngnt.com

  188. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by noot View Post
    Beauty! About time too :P
    Thanks, can't wait to finally start riding this season.

  189. #189
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    Nice crank choice! Only 40 grams more than XTs, but stiffer and much cooler looking

  190. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by howard619 View Post
    Nice crank choice! Only 40 grams more than XTs, but stiffer and much cooler looking
    Thanks, those are a few of the remains from my previous build. I reused the cranks, shifter, rear derailleur, and brakes. Can't go wrong with the SLX stuff!

  191. #191
    Baby Bear is in the house
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    Awesome pics of a tres cool bike
    That blue really pops!
    Better to have and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

  192. #192
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    Looking good, eurospek!
    Trailwrecker at large

  193. #193
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    Pardon the crappy pictures of a not as flashy Honzo, but here's mine.
    Specs
    Honzo 18" frame
    Stock build except for:
    XT Cranks
    SLX Brakes with 180mm IceTech Rotors/Pads front and rear
    Hope Pro2 EVO's laced to DT XM490 rims (built these myself )
    ODI Crosstrainer grips
    CrankBros Acid 2's

    I'm still waiting on a Sunline V1 flatbar in blue to arrive along with a gold E13 Guidering. I might also throw on a dropper post if I can find a good deal on one.
    The bike weighs in somewhere north of 31lbs at the moment but I still have yet to go tubeless which should drop some more weight. I'm not super worried about weight since I'd rather have a stronger bike than a lighter one.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-001.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-003.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-004.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-006.jpg  

    Honzo Build Thread - post your builds here-008.jpg  

    "So do me a favor. Find your bike, whatever kind of bike it is. And RIDE it." -Gary Fisher

  194. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrewM View Post
    I have been working on perfecting a similar setup after being dis-satisfied with my hammerschmidt project...

    What did you do to reinforce the Stinger to the seat tube of your bike? Under shift loads to the big(ger) ring I find there is a lot of flex (e-type stinger is meant to be hard-mounted to E-type mount on frame).

    Cheers,

    -D
    I messed around with the E-Type stinger, but without a backing clamp I wasn't happy with the stiffness under Granny-Big (2x10) shifts.

    Back to the drawing board and with a tiny bit of filing (derailleur clamp not frame) and an Axiom cable guide here is the finished product...

    This is with a production, Super Short Stay, frame with the wheel all the way forward in the dropouts and real 2.2 Purgatory tires. Lots of clearance for the front derailleur cage and clamp (photo doesn't show it, but there is more then on most duallies) and shifting is excellent with a 26t/38t combo up front.






  195. #195
    formerly shabadu
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    @ DrewM, what didn't you like about the Hammerschmidt setup?

  196. #196
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    Quote Originally Posted by flowtron View Post
    @ DrewM, what didn't you like about the Hammerschmidt setup?
    I -LIKED- the instant shifting (once I got used to it), the excellent ground clearance, the sound (yeah I know, but I did) and actually the mechanics of the Hammerschmidt.

    I -didn't like- the 22t-36t jump (I like the 26t-38t of my XTR 2x10 but I wouldn't run a bigger jump then that), the weight penalty (huge compared to XTR), and the drag.

    ...

    I've heard lots of theories about the drag (that it is mainly a perception from the big jump etc) but at the end of the day I pedal a bit behind my BB and tend to turn bigger gears at a slower cadence (spend a lot of time on a singlespeed) and for me the drag was demoralizing.

    If I had a bike that I was granny-ringing up a hill and then then ripping down on the Hammerschmidt would be an easy choice. For my riding it would not be recommended.

    -D

  197. #197
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    An Issue!

    I've completely destroyed the freehub only after 3 weeks of riding!
    It is the stock wheelset.
    I haven't pulled it apart to see exactly what has happened but my educated guess is I've sheared the palls off of the freehub body.

    I realize the wheelset isn't very high end, however, I expected the freehub to last at least until the middle of the summer!
    I'm a big guy so I know I generate a lot of torque through the drivetrain. And, I do expect to have to replace a freehub at some point in the middle of my riding season. But, this is ridiculous!
    This is the shortest length of time I've ever had on a bike before having a freehub blowup on me!

    Hopefully Kona can sort me out without too much trouble.
    We'll see!


    Other than that I've been really enjoying the bike!
    The single ring up front is definitely making me stronger and changing how I ride/climb the trails. Although, at times I still wish very much for a granny ring!

  198. #198
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    Quote Originally Posted by RideEverything View Post
    I've completely destroyed the freehub only after 3 weeks of riding!
    It is the stock wheelset.
    I haven't pulled it apart to see exactly what has happened but my educated guess is I've sheared the palls off of the freehub body.
    The stock Shimnao HG61 12-36 cassette calls for a stronger freehub than the spec'd Shimano M475 rear hub. This is from Shimano's tech doc:

    If the CS-HG61 cassette sprocket (12-36T) is installed onto a mountain bike, a large
    gear ratio between front and rear rings can be obtained so that the mountain bike can
    ride up steep slopes, but this will also place a heavy load on the rear hub. Shimano
    provides a rear hub which can provide enough strength and durability if using this
    cassette sprocket in combination with a front chainwheel set (22-32-44T).
    If using the cassette sprocket in combination with any hub other than the FH-M629/FHM529,
    the hub may become damaged. Check the Shimano website for the most up-todate
    information regarding compatible Shimano hubs. (SHIMANO ‚Äď Cycling, Fishing, Rowing)
    Quote Originally Posted by RideEverything View Post
    Other than that I've been really enjoying the bike!
    The single ring up front is definitely making me stronger and changing how I ride/climb the trails. Although, at times I still wish very much for a granny ring!
    Likewise, I'm missing the granny gear but definitely loving the 1x9. I don't miss the front derailleur (and the noise), but only on some climbs. Plus I've only had two rides so far, and I'm not really in the best of shape in the beginning of the riding season anyway. Give me a month of riding now that my brother is done with school and we'll be hitting up the trails in the weekday as well.

    And 1x9 definitely makes you an out of the saddle climber. On my previous TransAM, I was a spinner all the way to the top, using my 24T granny and 11-34 cassette. With the Honzo, seated climbing doesn't get me half way through the climb before I feel like keeling over lol. Out of the saddle isn't as much of a problem, you have to pick your line, and simply power to the top. And I don't get hung up on bigger ruts and logs anymore with these 29er wheels. The TransAM sucked in that department.

    I did switch the Shimano HG61 cassette for an XT M770 11-34 after I saw the HG61 digging into my aluminum freehub body on the Sun Ringle Charger Experts. But after the second ride, I had my LBS order a cromoly freehub body for my wheelset and I'm going back to the Shimano HG61 cassette. I'll gain some climbing gears, and a little bit over 150 grams.

    But overall, from the two rides I've had so far, I'm in complete love with my bike. Sizing is spot on, the Reverb is an excellent addition, and I'm loving the handling of the Honzo at 110mm on the Talas 34, quick and nimble, and easy to pop the front. I tired the 140mm setting and it's good for the bigger chunk on the trails, but for the majoirty of where I ride, it feels like too much (similar to the TransAM feeling I had rocking a Fox Float 36 at 160mm). Definitely use it on the downhills, a simple flick of the knob and it's wonderful stuff.
    Last edited by eurospek; 05-20-2012 at 09:20 AM.

  199. #199
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    Quote Originally Posted by eurospek View Post
    The stock Shimnao HG61 12-36 cassette calls for a stronger freehub than the spec'd Shimano M475 rear hub. This is from Shimano's tech doc:



    Likewise, I'm missing the granny gear but definitely loving the 1x9. I don't miss the front derailleur (and the noise), but only on some climbs. Plus I've only had two rides so far, and I'm not really in the best of shape in the beginning of the riding season anyway. Give me a month of riding now that my brother is done with school and we'll be hitting up the trails in the weekday as well.

    And 1x9 definitely makes you an out of the saddle climber. On my previous TransAM, I was a spinner all the way to the top, using my 24T granny and 11-34 cassette. With the Honzo, seated climbing doesn't get me half way through the climb before I feel like keeling over lol. Out of the saddle isn't as much of a problem, you have to pick your line, and simply power to the top. And I don't get hung up on bigger ruts and logs anymore with these 29er wheels. The TransAM sucked in that department.

    I did switch the Shimano HG61 cassette for an XT M770 11-34 after I saw the HG61 digging into my aluminum freehub body on the Sun Ringle Charger Experts. But after the second ride, I had my LBS order a cromoly freehub body for my wheelset (off the Sun Ringle Demon DH wheelset) and I'm going back to the Shimano HG61 cassette. I'll gain some climbing gears, and a little bit over 150 grams.

    But overall, from the two rides I've had so far, I'm in complete love with my bike. Sizing is spot on, the Reverb is an excellent addition, and I'm loving the handling of the Honzo at 110mm on the Talas 34, quick and nimble, and easy to pop the front. I tired the 140mm setting and it's good for the bigger chunk on the trails, but for the majoirty of where I ride, it feels like too much (similar to the TransAM feeling I had rocking a Fox Float 36 at 160mm). Definitely use it on the downhills, a simple flick of the knob and it's wonderful stuff.
    F'ed if I know how to multi-quote a post!

    Soooo.... Shimano/Kona didn't spec the bike properly? Is that what you're trying to tell me? Or are you calling me fat!!


    The 29er sized wheels definitely help on many levels when riding through chop and climbing.

    A few observations after two and a half weeks of solid riding in comparing my 26" HT to the Honzo 29" HT:

    Being that it is still the start of bike season for me I'm not sure if my observations are coloured by the amount of 29er evangelical reading I've done or if it is just me warming up my skills at the start of the season. I haven't seen any unicorns that are claimed once you throw a leg over a 29er!!

    I definitely find myself standing more for the tougher climbs. Although, I do find that I just pedal at a slower rate and I don't really need to stand until the trail gets really steep and/or tech. It is a different way of managing the climb without a granny.
    Also, I don't find myself spinning the rear wheel out anymore on tech climbs. I believe that this is because I'm pushing a harder gear than I used to run for those climbs. With the granny I guess there is easier torque involved which leads to being able to spin out the rear wheel on climbs. Don't get me wrong, it's not like I was spinning the back wheel out on every climb while I was in the granny. With the Honzo I am finding that I am definitely doing it less than I was previously.
    I do notice the bigger wheels do help carry momentum and speed much easier. This, with smoothing out the chop, helps the climbing and getting me into trouble on the descents!!

    The other thing I've noticed and that I've mention in previous posts is that the larger wheel size smooths out the trail. This leads me to picking lines on the HT that I would normally reserve for a FS bike! I am getting spanked in those line choices because of the speed I am carrying. I am then reminded harshly that I am still on a HT!

    Another thing that is taking a little getting used to is the low BB height. I am having way more crank-end/pedal strikes. However, the strikes aren't destroying my flow of the trail. (The pedal strike complaint thing, in general, really makes me wonder about the skill of the riders complaining!)
    That being said, I am starting to wonder if I can up the travel on the Revelation to 140mm from 120mm to help out with raising the BB height. Also, I think I "might" need more travel because I am starting to become more confident/aggressive with pushing the bike into more gnarlier lines. Or I could adjust the air pressure in the fork and deal with it that way!

    Ahhh, bike nerdery!

  200. #200
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    Standing more is a good thing

    I've been doing it for the last 2 years and initially lost speed on timed climbs, but after a few months my body traded spinning/cardio for power and big gears. Now I'm beating my old times with less training and overall fitness (due to laziness/new baby etc). So I'm convinced it's a better MTBing position. Another benefit to standing is you can slam your post down to the frame, since it's not used anymore, and attain a better attack position for the DH.

    I recently tried a longer stem (70mm vs 50mm) and could take tight switch back climbs better, but didn't realize I was hurting my climbing power. I know that seems counter intuitive, but standing you can put more power to the pedals with a short stem (think of a deadlift where you keep the weight away from your body vs. closer to it). On the steeps you actually pull up on the bar alot to generate power. It's also easier to put more weight down to push the pedal over.

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