2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.

    Was told that I might get a bit more feedback on these 2 frames since they're fairly popular for SSing - don't plan on running them SS, only geared, but you never know I guess. Looking for an improvement on my '08 rigid Monkey for trail riding running PLUS setup.

    So as the title says, which would you get and why? Looking to replace mt '08 Monkey with something newer with more modern geo and a bit more Reach. Plan to run this as a PLUS setup, most likely B+ rear/29+ front, or 29+ F&R if it fits.

    I was originally just thinking a new Yellow/orange Monkey since my old one has served me so well, so versatile, but then heard that Surly was discontinuing the yellow, so started looking anew. Found the Unit and it seems to pretty much follow the same design as the new Monkey with one added benefit, replaceable drop outs. Also, I can find the Unit for sale online easy, haven't been able to find the Monkey for sale and shipment online, so would need to find a shop I could trust to order from.

    Any help/thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  2. #2
    Big Boy
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    i like the unit dropouts better. and the km only has 1 set of bottle cage bosses on small and med frames.

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  3. #3
    EXORCIZE
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    Krampus has a weight penalty, but can fit a bigger rear tire and has more BB drop.

    Vassago made their new ti bike in an XL - maybe they'll soon start making their steel frames in XL as well?
    2017 Diamondback Haanjo
    2016 Pivot 429T
    2011 Kona Unit

  4. #4
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    Actually the taller BB would be a PLUS for me, don't like super low BBs, hence why I kind fo ruled the Krampus out. Right now any frame that has the HTA I like, has way too much BB drop, so going with the B+ designed frame and looking to run B+ rear/29+ to help slacken out the front and raise the BB a tad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ryder1 View Post
    Krampus has a weight penalty, but can fit a bigger rear tire and has more BB drop.
    Vassago made their new ti bike in an XL - maybe they'll soon start making their steel frames in XL as well?
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  5. #5
    EXORCIZE
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Plan to run this as a PLUS setup, most likely B+ rear/29+ front, or 29+ F&R if it fits.
    I see. I read that to mean, if it fit, you *preferred* a 29+ in back.

    I don't think I've yet seen anyone push the boundaries of 29er tire size in back of current Unit. From photos/measurements, it appears a 2.6 shouldn't be a problem, and lots of new tires in this size being released (29+ seems to be market-challenged). I'd want to know how wide I could go in back of each frame.

    As for B+ in back, I would only note that the Unit, once you control for fork length, has a bit slacker HTA than the Monkey. Hardly worth mentioning, except you're already taking a relatively slack-for-rigid 69 HTA, then slackening it with a 29+ up front. A 480-490mm fork will slacken it more. A minor point, but when you combine it with the Monkey's shorter stays, the Unit will be longer (front and rear) and slacker.
    2017 Diamondback Haanjo
    2016 Pivot 429T
    2011 Kona Unit

  6. #6
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    Just to add, I have a 2018 Unit (same geo as 2017 unit) and it setup 29+ front and rear with plenty of clearance, and I don't even run the dropouts all the way back.

    Compared to my other bikes, the chain stays are then a little long, but it does help in some things. That said it feels solid as a 29+ bike and I really appreciate the high BB. ( I too was between a KM an Unit, wanting to put in 29er wheels into a 27+ frame for a higher BB).
    ~bigBMX
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  7. #7
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    Since BigBMX resurected this thread, thought maybe I should offer an update on what I got and how I run it. I went for the Unit, it just was easier to get and I liked the drop outs over the Surly and having the option to be able to replace/swap them out.

    Initially just threw all the parts off the old Monkey right onto the Unit, including the B+/29+ wheels, that coupled with an external lower cup raised the BB a good bit and slackened the HTA out to around 67*. This setup was quite nice on the proper DHs, but called for a bit more weight bias to the front on flatter, twisty trails or else it easily pushed the front.

    Then I decided to build back up a 29+ rear wheel and give it a go, as there looked to be lots of clearance and it fit a true 29x3" tyre. I definitely prefer it setup 29+ F&R, but run the drop outs all the way back and would prefer ever so slightly shorter rear running the 29+. Best thing about the 29+ setup is the BB height/ground clearance, I had installed my 175 cranks onto the Unit, but then once I fitted the 29+ I put my 180s on.

    Initially set it up with a Nuke Proof 760 bar and 50mm stem, but just got a SQ Labs 16 degree bar to try and ease my injured thumb, so trying a 60mm stem with that, liking it so far just commuting and tooling around on it.

    Setup B+ 2.8" rear /29x3" front
    2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.-dcs_4797_fb.jpg

    29x3" F&R
    2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.-dscn1668_wp.jpg

    2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.-dscn1271_fb.jpg

    2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.-dscn1272_fb.jpg

    2017 Monkey vs 2018 Unit.-dscn1273_fb.jpg
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

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