Salsa Cycles - Dos Niner Review from Mike C- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Salsa Cycles - Dos Niner Review from Mike C

    Hey folks, thanks for reading and paying close attention to one of our new products. Based on the responses so far, it is clear that other people are as stoked about this product as Salsa. This is great news.

    I'd also like to call out special thanks Mike C and MTBR for working with Salsa. In all honesty, knowing what Mike said after Interbike, it was a risk to send a bike to Mike C. He is brutally honest and not a Salsa sponsored rider. However, we believed the risks were worth it. Props to Mike C and MTBR!

    In reviewing what Mike sent us directly, what he posted on MTBR and what we have experienced, both first hand and thru a number of test riders, there is certainly some conflicting information out there. We can concur that tire clearance is "tight" on this bike, although there is some discrepancy between our measurements and Mike's. Once we receive the bike back from Mike, we will also look closely at this bike and see if there is something unique about this pre production frame.

    Regarding clearance, design parameters forced our hand. Just to name a few, we wanted to keep the frame very light, keep the chain stays as short as possible, offer a full range of sizes (16", 18", 20" & 22"), and keep the seat angle at 73 degrees. Making changes to any one, compromises the other. That said, we continue to look for ways to balance these factors and improve the clearance at the seat stay bridge.

    Tire clearance aside, we are also concerned about the feedback on the Salsa Relish air shock. Our test folks range from much lighter than Mike and his friends, too much larger. Every one of our test riders has been running a range of air pressure in this shock and getting full travel. Suspension feel is personal, and we believe that the Dos Niner will give you the desired range needed to adjust it to your needs. Put simply, the Relish shock works for us, and our testers, here in MN. Again, since Mike had a different experience, we will review the bike received back from Mike C to see what is up.

    Thanks to all for weighing in. If we can wade thru all the mud slinging, a company like Salsa can get a lot of useful information from this thread and this forum. Going forward, Salsa plans to use this forum for future product development, so please keep coming back and sharing your experiences.

    Thanks.

    Jason Boucher
    Salsa Crew
    Last edited by Salsa Cycles; 12-07-2004 at 02:05 PM. Reason: Symbols didn't transfer from Microsoft

  2. #2
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    Thanks for the updates.

    Keep up the good work!
    Front Range Forum Moderator

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa Cycles
    Going forward, Salsa plans to use this forum for future product development, so please keep coming back and sharing your experiences.

    Best part of the whole message.

    I really like my Las Cruces btw.

  4. #4
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    Thanks Jason for dropping by with that update.

    About keeping the seat tube angle at 73º. Why have one angle for all sizes, when cranklengths are pretty much fixed at 175" and rider's legs do vary roughtly 2 whole inches per frame size, especially if this poses an extra challenge to obtain nice tire clearance?
    I've come accross some (26") builders giving size 16" one or two degrees more that 22", say 74º vs. 72º. Those values also, in my humble experience, not only work extremely well for the corresponding riders, but also conveniently help the 29" frame designer to make the rest of the geometry work well.
    In the 16" size, toe clearance often is an issue, and 1º steeper in the STA already offers 1cm extra toe clearance. In the 22" size the relatively slack STA helps keep the bike short, or the other way around, allows to throw in some extra chainstay length without handling penalties.
    I haven't drawn this out, but I *think* that a steeper seat tube angle would allow you to give the 16" and 18" a few vital mm's extra tire clearance. Should you have been forced to slacken the HTA for the 16" to prevent toe overlap, you can steal some of that back and make the bike as snappy at you like, or even reduce the cockpit reach.

    Some test riders stated that they had to run the damper at 0 psi. Is there any chance the rear triangle's spring rate is a bit stiff for a light rider?

    The damper sure looks nice. I bet you made it as small as you coul, but if I faced your challenges to create more tire clearance on a bike that's otherwise super nice, I'd try to make the damper shorter and the seatstay longer.

    On this pic,

    there seems to be a bit of room left to raise the damper in the frame, to further allow the seatstays to be lengthed a bit.

    Just some thoughts from the wrong side of the Altantic.

    I'm glad I'm not a professional bike designer (or am I...?), a 29" softtail is a real challenge to get just right. But I'm sure, that when it's all done, the result be be worth it.

    Please don't see these points as critic, half of it probably doesn't even make sense, but I'm just in love with the idea of owning a Dos Niner. The day I get one, or advise a friend to buy it, I hope it to have nice clearance and a no-comprimise geometry for it's intended use. Don't feel obliged to reply, I'm looking forward to seeing what MikeC's feedback will have you tweak the bike.

    Hope to see you back on here soon, with the scoop on the production frame!

    Happy trails,

    J
    Klok - XC - Skate - Ski

  5. #5
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    Cloxxki - thanks for the feedback

    Cloxxki, thanks for the feedback. Your suggestions and ideas are noted. I'm not the designer eitherso I can't offer any feedback on your ideas , but I know he had some very specific reasons to design it the way he did.

    After the dust settles from yesterdays review posting, maybe we can come back to this and discuss some of your questions in greater detail.

    Thanks again.

    Jason
    Salsa Crew

  6. #6
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    Jason, and the Salsa Crew.

    This holiday season you and the crew deserve an extra glass of egg-nog and brandy for putting up with the MTBR zealots. I hope the feedback is constructive and you continue to make and improve 29ers!

    So once the Mooto-X competitor is finished, how about targeting a Rig replacement with a rigid fork?
    We don't need more to be thankful for; we just need to be more thankful.

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    Great Looking Frame!

    Love the looks. I hope you keep the short chainstays too.

    Also, its great to hear from the producers themselves. Thanks for letting us hear your voice. The fact that you participated here on the forum makes me want to support Salsa.

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    New guy adds two cents

    All:

    This is my first time posting, I've been reading this site for about a year and I finally have something to say. Please keep in mind I'm an engineer, a engine designer in fact, so sometimes I will get technical. I ride a Racer X 29ner and a Connondale F4000 SS half breed in really bad weather. Salsa: please, please, please take the steps to get the tire clearance right. My son and I raced the Ore to Shore this year and talked to your people at Salsa display. They told us about the Dos Niner then and I have been stoked ever since about getting one for my son. I don't care if you need to run different seat angles on each model to make it work, it's only fixturing. Raise the shock location on the seat tube if you need to, do what ever, but make it work. The bottom line, I will gladly pay $100 more for a frame with great tire clearance, I won't pay a penny for a frame I can't ride. I love your products, I use your stems, rims, handle bars. You guys make great engineered products. Please fix the Dos Niner.

  9. #9
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    question...

    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa Cycles
    there is some discrepancy between our measurements and Mike's. Once we receive the bike back from Mike,

    What is a typical measurement for other frames you have measured?

    For making an attempt at supporting the 29" design I say thanks! (or should I say "Muchas Gracias")

    Cheers, from Austin

  10. #10
    Biz
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    Cloxxki- The rear shock thing is a friggin mystery to me. I rode the demo Dos Niner for a lap at my normal trail with 10psi (as per the recommendations of Salsa posse) and I got full travel out of it. I weigh 185, so I'm kind of in the middle as far as weight goes. I think the problem with the rear shock isn't really a problem with the shock at all, but more a problem with people's perceptions of the bike. Realistically, the bike is not a full suspension bike, it's a hardtail with some squish. I didn't notice the suspension affecting the bike in any negative way (no sucking up of my energy) but I did notice it took the egde off the rock gardens, etc. If you ride the bike like a hardtail, it feels great. If you ride the bike like a full suspension bike, it feels like a hardtail and you won't like it.

    Regardless of what people may say there is a slight, subconscious difference in the way you ride when you're on a hardtail versus a FS. If the mental approach to the Dos is the same as the mental approach to a hardtail, it's a nice little ride. If you're looking for the "point and shoot" feel of a full suspension bike, then the Dos sucks hard. For what it is, it's a nice bike. Is it nice enough for me to buy one? I don't know...

    *Disclaimer: Yes, I work at QBP, but not for Salsa. They have their own dark, dank corner/cave where they're kept far away from the rest of us ;-)

  11. #11
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    Yeah, what engineguy said! (and welcome to the forums, another one out of lurker mode)

    [OT]: Biz, can you pretend you're the stock manager and tell Ritchey you'll need a few rolls of 2.4 tires to start off with? [/OT]
    Klok - XC - Skate - Ski

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa Cycles
    . We can concur that tire clearance is "tight" on this bike, although there is some discrepancy between our measurements and Mike's. Once we receive the bike back from Mike, we will also look closely at this bike and see if there is something unique about this pre production frame.

    Salsa Crew
    ]

    One thing to consider. What rims was MC using?. I know that he has beem fond of the Zipp rims in the past. If I remember correctly, a narrow rim will make the tire profile taller and narrower than if mounted on a wider rim. Not a huge difference, but definately enought to make a few mm's difference.

    Frank
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  13. #13
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    Chainstay length...

    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa Cycles
    Just to name a few, we wanted to keep the frame very light, keep the chain stays as short as possible, offer a full range of sizes (16", 18", 20" & 22"), and keep the seat angle at 73 degrees. Making changes to any one, compromises the other. That said, we continue to look for ways to balance these factors and improve the clearance at the seat stay bridge.
    Could you get one of your bike designers to tell us why (a) the chainstay length you've chosen is not too short (comprimising tire clearance) and (b) the seat angle needs to be 73 degrees for all frame sizes?

    Particularly regarding chainstay length, it is my opinion and experience that even a cm or two of increased length of the chainstay does not adversley affect climbing/acceleration or traction. Short chainstay's are one of those urban cycling myth's propogated in the media -- lots of high-end road frames vary the chainstay length to properly center a rider's mass between the wheels, and there is no adverse affect on the bike's behavior. The marginal increase in the wheelbase associated with such a change could only be beneficial, leading to better high-speed cornerning and stability on rough stuff. I've ridden plenty of tandem miles off-road and know that much of the hysteria concerning "the slow handling" of a long wheel-based bike is misplaced -- the blame should probably be placed on long trail measurements (a combination of slack head-tube angles and small fork offsets), a problem usually compounded with 29ers due to the increased wheel circumfrence.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeT
    Could you get one of your bike designers to tell us why (a) the chainstay length you've chosen is not too short (comprimising tire clearance) and (b) the seat angle needs to be 73 degrees for all frame sizes?

    Particularly regarding chainstay length, it is my opinion and experience that even a cm or two of increased length of the chainstay does not adversley affect climbing/acceleration or traction. Short chainstay's are one of those urban cycling myth's propogated in the media -- lots of high-end road frames vary the chainstay length to properly center a rider's mass between the wheels, and there is no adverse affect on the bike's behavior. The marginal increase in the wheelbase associated with such a change could only be beneficial, leading to better high-speed cornerning and stability on rough stuff. I've ridden plenty of tandem miles off-road and know that much of the hysteria concerning "the slow handling" of a long wheel-based bike is misplaced -- the blame should probably be placed on long trail measurements (a combination of slack head-tube angles and small fork offsets), a problem usually compounded with 29ers due to the increased wheel circumfrence.
    Nicely said, PeT! The additional chainstay length helps give the rider a better weight balance the rider over the bike (important for all-around XC riding) and this is very important for big riders with long seatubes/seatposts because as the rider's saddle height gets higher and higher, more and more of his weight is placed on the rear wheel. Any negative affect the additional wheelbase has on handling can be remedied with headtube angle and stem length. Further, with today's ubiquitous straight seatposts (no setback), a 73-degrees STA is too steep for most people unless you slam the saddle all the way back.

  15. #15
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    Kinda OT...

    While I appreciate Salsa's dedication to bringing cool new stuff in at (relatively) affordable pricepoints, I for one sure wish they'd make a 29" version of the a la Carte. I know, I know, there's already a steel 29" hardtail distributed by the Mothership, but it'd be nice to see a higher-end, lighter, more resilient riding frame that's still within a lot of people's price range.
    Just one monkey's opinion,

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  16. #16
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    Enter Soma.
    They came out of lurker mode just to consult us. Patience is the game with them, though, or deposits.
    Bad for LBS's, but Jenson's Zion looks to be a candidate to reach many riders, as well. Cheap 853 frames, even if it's just a headtube.
    Klok - XC - Skate - Ski

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    FWIW, Rivendell article on chainstay length: http://www.rivbike.com/html/rr_ufactor.html

    Includes interesting comments from Jobst Brandt.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biz
    I think the problem with the rear shock isn't really a problem with the shock at all, but more a problem with people's perceptions of the bike. Realistically, the bike is not a full suspension bike, it's a hardtail with some squish.If you ride the bike like a hardtail, it feels great. If you ride the bike like a full suspension bike, it feels like a hardtail and you won't like it.
    Absolutely true, but I highly doubt MikeC was riding it like a FS bike. Having won this year's 2500 mile Great Divide Bike Race -- on a softtail -- he's well aware of where softtails fall in the spectrum.

  19. #19

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    Dos Niner Feed Back

    Just let me state that I do not work for Salsa but was asked to ride bike and give them feedback. I am six feet tall and weigh 170lbs with a 33" inseam. I was wanting to wait awhile before posting feedback on this bike. But in light of some of the coments posted, I thought I should say something. When given the opportunity to provide feedback for a company on their product, I think it only fair to provide balanced comments. We all know where things can be improved, but let's also provide input on where things have been done right! Now having said this, here are some of my observations.
    I have split my time between a ridgid Karate monkey and the Dos niner with the Winwood fork. Before this the last seven year have been spent on dual suspention mountain bikes (26" wheel). I have about fourty hours riding time on this bike and a number of things pop up for me. The ride of the Dos Niner is stable-it holds it's line well. Climbing in technical single track (wet rocks, roots) is bang on. It sticks like peanut butter and as long as you have the jam it will stay hooked up. Especially in those situations where you loose momentum and have to get back on the gas again. At speed it doesn't require a lot of rider muscle - if anything a light touch on the bars is all that is required to get throught the nasty stuff.
    We gutted the air cartrdige in the Winwood fork and installed a spring kit (huge difference) but I am not going to mess with the damper internals as it is a borrowed fork! The fork has potential, but it needs work. I realise this is a softtail and not a dully! I have run the rear shock at pressures as low as 8PSI and now I ride it at 20 PSI. It definelty takes some of the sting out of the rough stuff. But it is what it is a softtail!
    In regards to frame clearance I am currently running the Schwalbe Little Alberts (2.1) on Velomax wheels and have about a half an inch clearance between the top of the tire and and gobs of clearance at the chainstays.I have run Tiogas and WTB tires as well and have found that the clearance drops to about a quarter inch. With all of the mud that we get in the pacific northwest I can't say that tire clearance has been a problem but I would certainly take more clearence over less. All in all for a PRE-PRODUCTION BIKE they are very close to the mark.

  20. #20
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    Who's Keeping Score

    Are we having fun yet?!

    In reviewing what has been written and what has been emailed to Salsa as a result of this posting, I want to point out one of the biggest issues of a small bike and component company AND a product designer. Who and what do you listen too?

    So far, we have received the following comments.
    - Keep the chainstays as short as possible
    - Make the seat angle steeper
    - Make the seat angle slacker depending on size
    - Make the damper shorter
    - Make the chainstays longer

    In the end, we have to go by what we hear from our testers, what we want, and most importantly how we want the bike to ride. In the end, we hope that whatever we come up with, you will understand why we did what we did AND try this bike (or any of our products). Salsa is a true group of riders from all disciplines. I am going to continue to gather questions from these posts and hope to post some answers in the future as our actual production bikes become available.

    Now another fun part. Not only do you get feedback on your current product, you get new ideas as well. So far in this post, we have received a few recommendations.

    - An Ala Carte steel type 29er
    - A rigid 29" fork


    Thanks again,

    Jason
    Salsa Crew

  21. #21
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    testing, testing

    I appreciate the fact that Salsa has their testers (and thank you Obie1 for your ride report), BUT I think the background of the tester makes all the difference. Some of us have been riding 29ers exclusively for 3-5 years. To use Obie1's post as an example, nearly all of the pluses he lists for the Dos Niner, we have come to expect from ANY 29"er. In my opinion, even a "bad" 29" design could feel good to someone who has only had 26" experience (not saying at all that Obie1 doesn't have a lot of 29er experience, he probably does.) However, this "blind side" could ESPECIALLY be true of someone who has LOTS of 26" only experience . It is easy to pick up the benefits of the big wheels themselves, but to get an idea as to what geometries are optimal for the big wheel and the riders themselves (somewhat subjective, I know) takes a lot of RIDE TIME on a lot of different designs. As far as I know, this board represents the vast majority of 29" experience out there. As such, companies like Salsa are smart to listen up. How many (quote) "bicycle experts" in the industry have you met who didn't have a clue on 29"ers? The answer, I think, is "most of them." I don't say this to sound conceited, but the fact is, manufacturers have so many irons in the fire, that expertise every area would be impossible. So, what's my point? Er...keep up the good work, folks, keep it positive, and let's get more manufacturers involved. Now, Obie1, where can we get those Little Alberts, and how many signatures do you require for a 29" Racing Ralph or Fast Fred???

  22. #22
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    Jason, Kudos...

    Keep up the good work. It is well appreciated, and your participation on this forum grants Salsa a "core" legitamacy that cannot be bought. Forward the progress, embrace the criticism of many who actaully want to see you thrive, and thicken the skin where barbs are dealt worthlessly. Godspeed. And eat a $hitton of really hot food, with tequilla, and have a spiritual breakthrough

  23. #23
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    @obie1 : Great first post, thanks! But err.... Tioga tires, did I read correctly?? Elaborate, if you will?

    @Jason : Obviously, riders as far apart as MikeC and myself, Great Divide monster vs. half-hour miracle, and all the flavours in between, have different opinions on chainstay lengths. Actually, My experience tells me that CSL is really not that vital on a bike. Less so than heatube angle and stem size, I'd say.
    As also much more experienced designers have hinted above, are fixed 73º STA's really that important? Slacker angles on larger sizes would allow use of longer chainstays without lengthened seat-in-front-of-rear-axle, and steeper STA's on smaller sizes help make the tire clearance work out.
    Tire clearance being such a vital part of cycling, going into production only when you get 15mm at the damper with large tires, will mean HUGE difference in sales, but you figured that by now I'm sure :-)

    What are you building this bike to be anyway? Worldcup racer, all-day adventures, shuttle fun? A bike can't be all at once, and the builder sortof decides what it will be good for. My KM is my fav ride of a dozen for local riding, but I won't likely ever take it to a marathon, as the Fisher is much more in place there.


    Tioga tires???
    And how did you like the Schwalbe's?
    Klok - XC - Skate - Ski

  24. #24
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    My "professional" opinion

    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa Cycles
    Are we having fun yet?!

    In reviewing what has been written and what has been emailed to Salsa as a result of this posting, I want to point out one of the biggest issues of a small bike and component company AND a product designer. Who and what do you listen too?

    So far, we have received the following comments.
    - Keep the chainstays as short as possible
    - Make the seat angle steeper
    - Make the seat angle slacker depending on size
    - Make the damper shorter
    - Make the chainstays longer

    In the end, we have to go by what we hear from our testers, what we want, and most importantly how we want the bike to ride. In the end, we hope that whatever we come up with, you will understand why we did what we did AND try this bike (or any of our products). Salsa is a true group of riders from all disciplines. I am going to continue to gather questions from these posts and hope to post some answers in the future as our actual production bikes become available.

    Now another fun part. Not only do you get feedback on your current product, you get new ideas as well. So far in this post, we have received a few recommendations.

    - An Ala Carte steel type 29er
    - A rigid 29" fork


    Thanks again,

    Jason
    Salsa Crew
    Production bikes can't be all things to all people. All softtail bikes suffer from long seatstays/dampener assemblies and tire clearance issues.

    First thing I'd do to solve the problem is to shorten the shock body if at all possible. It looks long for a 1" travel air shock.

    The next thing I'd do is ditch the sloping shoulder yoke on the seatstays and substitute an radiussed yoke that maximizes tire clearance for no additional cost or having to change anything else if you're locked into the rest of it. A centimeter of tire clearance is all anyone needs for 99% of the riding they'll ever do. Of course if the big tires become available, you'll want your bike to be able to use them, so....

    Move the upper shock mount up the seattube and then brace the ST/TT junction, especially if you drop the TT to increase standover. Smaller sized frames may lose seatpost adjustment, but not enough to make a difference in anything but "looks."

    Lengthen the chainstays and inform folks to ride the bike, not read the hype. I understand market drivers, but too many folks want to have a 29" wheeled bike in a 26" package simply out of ignorance.

    I won't argue about the STA but folks need to understand that a 73-degree STA with a straight seatpost (no setback) means they're effectively running a 74+ degree STA. That's too steep, especially for big guys.

    My last recommendation would be to grab David Grey from across the hall and get him involved. No offense to any of your crew, but David's a smart & innovative guy and a fresh set o' eyeballs is always a good thing.

    I say all of the above with love & affection...just so there's no misunderstanding.

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    sorry for the semi-hijack but.....

    Quote Originally Posted by n8ofire
    Now, Obie1, where can we get those Little Alberts, and how many signatures do you require for a 29" Racing Ralph or Fast Fred???
    Your LBS can order the Little Alberts from Cyclone Bicycle Supply in Portland OR.
    Last edited by unotache; 12-08-2004 at 11:58 PM. Reason: sorry

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    David definately is the man, and looks really good in his pink dress, I might add :-)

    I was trusted the secret that for the KM, the first proto was extremely close, they changed one dimension by 5mm, and then the second proto was just as it's still sold now.
    Bottom line : never tell me a secret, but trust David to make a production frame to work for many.
    Klok - XC - Skate - Ski

  27. #27

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    Schwalbe Little Alberts

    Quote Originally Posted by Cloxxki
    @obie1 : Great first post, thanks! But err.... Tioga tires, did I read correctly?? Elaborate, if you will?

    @Jason : Obviously, riders as far apart as MikeC and myself, Great Divide monster vs. half-hour miracle, and all the flavours in between, have different opinions on chainstay lengths. Actually, My experience tells me that CSL is really not that vital on a bike. Less so than heatube angle and stem size, I'd say.
    As also much more experienced designers have hinted above, are fixed 73º STA's really that important? Slacker angles on larger sizes would allow use of longer chainstays without lengthened seat-in-front-of-rear-axle, and steeper STA's on smaller sizes help make the tire clearance work out.
    Tire clearance being such a vital part of cycling, going into production only when you get 15mm at the damper with large tires, will mean HUGE difference in sales, but you figured that by now I'm sure :-)

    What are you building this bike to be anyway? Worldcup racer, all-day adventures, shuttle fun? A bike can't be all at once, and the builder sortof decides what it will be good for. My KM is my fav ride of a dozen for local riding, but I won't likely ever take it to a marathon, as the Fisher is much more in place there.


    Tioga tires???
    And how did you like the Schwalbe's?
    Sorry guys... in regards to the brands ridden I ment to say KENDA not TIOGA! In regards to the Little Alberts I have had one ride on them (two hours). I will get another 3hours in this evening and give you more feed back.

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    Da Nada

    Quote Originally Posted by unotache
    Your LBS can order the Little Alberts from Cyclone Bicycle Supply in Portland OR.
    No worries! it's all good...

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by n8ofire
    I appreciate the fact that Salsa has their testers (and thank you Obie1 for your ride report), BUT I think the background of the tester makes all the difference. Some of us have been riding 29ers exclusively for 3-5 years. To use Obie1's post as an example, nearly all of the pluses he lists for the Dos Niner, we have come to expect from ANY 29"er. In my opinion, even a "bad" 29" design could feel good to someone who has only had 26" experience (not saying at all that Obie1 doesn't have a lot of 29er experience, he probably does.) However, this "blind side" could ESPECIALLY be true of someone who has LOTS of 26" only experience . It is easy to pick up the benefits of the big wheels themselves, but to get an idea as to what geometries are optimal for the big wheel and the riders themselves (somewhat subjective, I know) takes a lot of RIDE TIME on a lot of different designs. As far as I know, this board represents the vast majority of 29" experience out there. As such, companies like Salsa are smart to listen up. How many (quote) "bicycle experts" in the industry have you met who didn't have a clue on 29"ers? The answer, I think, is "most of them." I don't say this to sound conceited, but the fact is, manufacturers have so many irons in the fire, that expertise every area would be impossible. So, what's my point? Er...keep up the good work, folks, keep it positive, and let's get more manufacturers involved. Now, Obie1, where can we get those Little Alberts, and how many signatures do you require for a 29" Racing Ralph or Fast Fred???
    In response to your requests for a 29er Fast Freddie and Racing Ralph it would be nice if all that was required to bring a tire to market was a thousand signatures ....I am reminded of a mountain bike ride in Sooke. One of the guys came up with an idea of a harness to make packing a bike for extended periods of time easier. While we were struggling to pack the bikes up the slope, we came up with a great design. Then we came up with an even better marketing program! When we reached the top of the mountain the five of us looked at each other and laughed when David said “you realize the market for this product is the five of us!
    Seriously though.... to bring a tire to market you would have to be able to have at a minimum 3000 sold, then come up with the money for new molds then months of safety testing, performance testing then market testing. Then hope that you have done your home work well and that the riding public likes your tire! Because once a product has been flamed fairly or not in the press and in these types of forums you can end up with a warehouse full of very, very expensive Hula Hoops!
    As for those little Albert’s you can order them from Cyclone Supply 1-503-226-0696.
    It’s pouring with rain windy and ugly! Perfect weather for testing tires! We will be out for three hours this evening. I will give you more feedback on the tires later.

  30. #30
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    One more question.....

    Salsa Guys:
    Been out of town on business a few days, catching up on the thread.....DWF has excellent suggestions, raising the shock on the seat tube seems to be the most logical thing. Improved clearance at the seat stays and no change in wheel base.

    I have one question that has been bothering me, how have you verified the life of the chain stays. The flex section seems short and we are talking aluminum. Do you guys have FEA capabilities? Does it flex along the whole length or just in the flattened section? Have you performed endurance testing at full travel? If so, to how many cycles? We all know aluminum has a finite life in bending, but if the stress is kept low enough it can act as if it has infinite life (this is a chance to show people how much it takes to bring a product to market).

    I cannot even look at Fisher because I am extremely loyal to my LBS (Brampton Bike). Mike gives me great deals and I would never look elsewhere. So....for a suspended 29ner I look at Titus (and versions), Lenz and the Dos Niner. Already have a Racer X 29ner, want something a little more sporty for racing. That leaves you guys. Gives you an idea why I'm being such a pain in the [email protected]!#@.

    Please understand, there are alot of people who want you to succeed with this frame and I'm certainly one of them. Just looking at the number of hits on this thread should give you a good idea of how popular this frame will be.

    engineguy

  31. #31
    Blanco
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    I agree with czardonic on the chainstay issue. All "short chainstays" mean is that the wheelbase is shorter and your weight ends up more on the rear wheel.

    I don't want all my weight on the rear! I want to ride uphill without having to eat my knees, and I want to take hard corners without having to lean on the handlebars to keep from falling forwards and then I can't keep my arms loose and I wash out.

    If you want to know how suspension should work, look at motorcycles. All of mountain bike suspension technology comes from motorcycles. And all the motorcycle manufacturers have been trying to make their swingarms as long as possible. Motorcycles aim for 50-50 weight distribution. Why are cyclists obsessed with putting their weight all on the rear tire? Why not just take out the seat and sit on your rear rack?

  32. #32
    Recovering couch patato
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    obie1, would you by any chance have the inside info and know why Schwalbe chose the Little Albert for their 28"/29" debut? The 29" tire market consists solely of well-gripping full-knobbies, and Schwalbes specialism is even semi-knob race tires. The LA's will have to share the market with 15 other tires, a Racing Ralph would by far, yes very far, be the fastest 29" tire, and very likely the overall fastest XC race tire, regardless of size. While a RR could change the world, and offer Schwalbe a very substancial market share, they come with the LA? I sent a friendly email to Schwalbe, but never heard anything back. Too bad I lost Markus Hachmeyer's business card, he's a nice guy and kicks serious azz on a bike.
    Klok - XC - Skate - Ski

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa Cycles
    Are we having fun yet?!

    In reviewing what has been written and what has been emailed to Salsa as a result of this posting, I want to point out one of the biggest issues of a small bike and component company AND a product designer. Who and what do you listen too?

    So far, we have received the following comments.
    - Keep the chainstays as short as possible
    - Make the seat angle steeper
    - Make the seat angle slacker depending on size
    - Make the damper shorter
    - Make the chainstays longer

    In the end, we have to go by what we hear from our testers, what we want, and most importantly how we want the bike to ride. In the end, we hope that whatever we come up with, you will understand why we did what we did AND try this bike (or any of our products). Salsa is a true group of riders from all disciplines. I am going to continue to gather questions from these posts and hope to post some answers in the future as our actual production bikes become available.

    Now another fun part. Not only do you get feedback on your current product, you get new ideas as well. So far in this post, we have received a few recommendations.

    - An Ala Carte steel type 29er
    - A rigid 29" fork


    Thanks again,

    Jason
    Salsa Crew
    I've been on 29's for 4 years now (exclusively) and have done a great deal of frame and product design work. I have aslo had several customs built to satisfy my own curiosity... the point? I now ride a rigid KM and have found that despite it is one of the heaviest, it is one of the most predictable, best riding bikes I have ridden to date. it does EVERYTHING well and retails for $400 FOR THE FRAME AND FORK.

    I think Salsa will get it right given their track record with the KM and every other product I have used of theirs.

    -tom
    wow, this hurts more than it used to.

  34. #34
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    I'm just assembling a 2006 Large 20" Green/ Rasta Dos Niner as I write this. I have been enjoying the great looking frame and wheel/frame proportions of the bike all day. No more circus bear on a bike. It was pretty surprising to take a break from installing the BB and stumble upon this thread. I had a heart attack when I looked at the clearance. All the parts are here EXCEPT the tires. Earlier today I hung the wheels, measured a few things and ordered the 29" WTB Weirwolf 2.55 LT tires. The highest volume tire out there! I measured the same tire on 26" rims at 6 cm from the top of the rim to the top of the tread. This should leave me 1.3 cm to the brace on the seatstay. I think I should have plenty of room. Time will tell, but worst case scenario I will pay return postage, run a NanoRaptor Rear and Weirwolf front. I'll post the findings later this week.

    Cheers.

  35. #35
    Harmonius Wrench
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    You shouldn't have a worry.

    Quote Originally Posted by sinjin65
    I'm just assembling a 2006 Large 20" Green/ Rasta Dos Niner as I write this. I have been enjoying the great looking frame and wheel/frame proportions of the bike all day. No more circus bear on a bike. It was pretty surprising to take a break from installing the BB and stumble upon this thread. I had a heart attack when I looked at the clearance. All the parts are here EXCEPT the tires. Earlier today I hung the wheels, measured a few things and ordered the 29" WTB Weirwolf 2.55 LT tires. The highest volume tire out there! I measured the same tire on 26" rims at 6 cm from the top of the rim to the top of the tread. This should leave me 1.3 cm to the brace on the seatstay. I think I should have plenty of room. Time will tell, but worst case scenario I will pay return postage, run a NanoRaptor Rear and Weirwolf front. I'll post the findings later this week.

    Cheers.
    This thread is from 2004 and is about the original Dos. Since then the Dos has had a few mods done to it, one of which was to increase the clearance around the seatstay under the shock mount. You should be okay, but I'd like to know what kind of clearance that big WTB tire is going to have, so please post your findings.
    Riden' an Smilin'
    Guitar Ted

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