How to ride faster on full rigid- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 35 of 35
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100

    How to ride faster on full rigid

    So I went full rigid and I love it so far. Climbing is faster as well as cornering. My ride times though are a good bit slower than I use to be on them. I'm wondering how to ride faster. The area I ride is very rocky so I have to slow down in the rocky parts. Now according to strava the guy with the fastest times on the trail rides a full rigid single speed also. Even though his bike is a niner one 9 rdo and mine is considerably heavier I should still have faster times than I am making now. So I need some tips on riding a lot faster with full rigid

  2. #2
    Moderator Moderator
    Reputation: Walt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    7,349
    Rigid is slower than suspension on "very rocky" terrain. Your Strava nemesis is faster than you are, but it's not his/her bike. Pretty simple.

    You will eventually get used to it a bit and get somewhat faster, but you'll always be faster with suspension, probably. C'est la vie. Squishy forks (and frames) exist for a reason. If you're having *more fun* on the rigid bike, then throw away the stopwatch and enjoy, or at least just compare to your own times on the rigid bike to see if you're going "fast" or not.

    -Walt

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    25
    You definitely can't straight line through the chop. I switched over to fully rigid this year and really enjoy the ride, especially the climbing. Putting a higher volume tire up front will help, and slowing down in the rocky stuff seems to make it worse. I ride in Park City most of the time, so the worst for me is when my fingers/hands start to lock up on the long descents.

  4. #4
    Wanna ride bikes?
    Reputation: *OneSpeed*'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    5,851
    riding fast on a rigid bike over rough terrain is a skill. it takes time to learn. keep practicing.

    the bike makes very little difference. if you put a fast rider on a "slow" bike, and a slow rider on a "fast" bike, the fast rider wins every time.

    pick the smoothest straitest lines you can. if you haven't already, you will soon learn what it means to "ride light". it's one thing to just do it, and another thing to do it at speed.

    don't worry too much about your segment times, fast times won't pay the bills, it's just for bragging rights. if your goal was to go faster than you went the wrong direction. rigid is rarely faster. however, if your having fun stick with it, that's what it's all about. your times may improve slightly as you learn some new riding skills, but you'll always be faster with suspension. the best way to be faster than your friends is to be in better shape.
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    I've got the captain 2.2 up front right now which is a pretty high volume tire but thinking about going with a maxxis ardent 2.4

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    339
    Well, I'm the slowest guy on the trail whatever I ride, but FWIW I did put a 2.4 Ardent in front on my rigid ss (2.25 in the back). Definitely not night and day for me at least, but it does seem to help with cushioning the ride a bit in the rough stuff, and I like it when cornering. However a buddy of mine I ride with speculated the bigger tire will have more rolling resistance overall, so, potentially . . . . slower?

  7. #7
    Location: 10 ft from Hell Moderator
    Reputation: life behind bars's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    4,197
    Learn to pick your line, high volume tires and be "light" on the bike. Its a skill and it takes time to develop it unless you're a rigid Savant.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    How do you "ride light"

  9. #9
    Wanna ride bikes?
    Reputation: *OneSpeed*'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    5,851
    it's basically the opposite of riding a full suspension bike and allowing the bike to do all the work by just plowing into and over whatever obstacle lies in your path. you need to use your arms and legs as suspension. lifting or tapping the front/rear tire on things as you gracefully navigate the trail. you only have a precious 2.2-2.4" tire to soak up any rough stuff, so slamming into things will only cause flats or wreck your wheels.

    it's not easy to "tip toe" over and through sections of trail that are rough while attempting to go as fast as possible. you need to take advantage of every little ounce of speed. use momentum more, use less brake, etc.
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    I will have to work on that I am not a graceful rider at all

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    861
    Quote Originally Posted by tradarcher View Post
    So I need some tips on riding a lot faster with full rigid
    The key to riding rigid fast in gnar is to be fluid in your body position and the way you absorb impacts. You need to let the bike move under you. Your body represents the majority of the mass you are moving down the trail. Try to avoid anything that robs momentum.

    For exmple, assume you go through a "tech" section at speed. One approach is to try to pick lines and make lateral course corrections. The other approach is to take the direct path and correct via vertical movement of the bike. Vertical movements allow you to avoid loosing speed and do not require traction from your tires. If done properly the body moves a straight line while the arms and legs pump so that the bike can move vertical to accommodate the terrain.

    Make the bike float over the top of the gnar. Keep your body high when possible. When you hit rough stuff your bike comes upward towards your body. On the top of the rough stuff you can push the bike back downward.

    Approaching an area of rocks get out of the saddle early. Lift the bike and hop or float to the point where you are on the tops of the rocks. From the tops of the first few rocks put in just enough downward pressure that you can float again to the tops of the next few rocks. Between the tops just float the bike.

    The moment you hit a smooth section relax your body and especially relax your grips so you have the energy to repeat the effort for the next bit of gnar. Going fast on rigid in gnar is possible but it take more energy from the rider vs. having a suspension system.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    I will try working on that thanks guys

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    339
    In addition to riding light, I find on a rigid that being very judicious with braking is key--sometimes I start going down a descent too fast (for my ability) on the rigid and I start braking like crazy and things just get messy, and my forearms scream at me later!
    Last edited by jbass; 08-26-2015 at 09:34 PM.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    43
    When I first switched to the rigid fork, I was riding like it was an obstacle course. But after a while you learn the float. But now my fastest time on my morning loop (mix of single and double track, pretty hilltop) is on my full rigid as. You make up time on the climbs, and the technical climby stuff is so much easier on the rigid. I just put the suspension fork back on to see if I notice a speed difference this weekend. The beauty though is I can swap a fork faster than swapping a cassette... great having both.

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    5,290
    How is full rigid different than rigid?

    Would a rigid be similar to a halfie? While a full rigid is 100% diamond hard?

    But wouldn't a halfie be like a hardtail? I is confused.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    23,788
    Couldn't have said it any better than Walt Do you ride for fun or to get KOMs, is your ego so fragile? Strava=worst thing to happen to MTBing IMHO.

    As to how to get faster, you have to learn how to ride rigid and put some real high volume tyres on that damn bike, 2.2" Captain is frikin anemic, nothing less than 2.4" and IMHO, upfront put a PLUS tyre to really enjoy some cush, then learn how to float the bike and hop over obstacles.

    Quote Originally Posted by tradarcher View Post
    I've got the captain 2.2 up front right now which is a pretty high volume tire but thinking about going with a maxxis ardent 2.4
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    No I definitely ride for fun I was just asking how to increase my speed while riding rigid. My rims are ztr arch ex so I think about the biggest tire I can go with is a 2.4

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Saul Lumikko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    1,801
    High volume and low pressure is important. I have 2.35" tires front and rear, air pressures 16 and 17 psi respectively. I weigh around 75 kg, which should be roughly at the 160 lbs mark.

    Staying off the brakes at the right moment is also good advice. Ever tried to pop a wheelie while applying rear brake? It simply doesn't happen. Same thing with unweighing the front to get over an obstacle: release the brakes and you'll get it.

  19. #19
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    12,211
    Quote Originally Posted by tradarcher View Post
    My rims are ztr arch ex so I think about the biggest tire I can go with is a 2.4
    Sounds about right.

    febikes and jbass pretty much nailed it, as far as riding style is concerned.

    When I get really tired, I often look for the smoothest line. Even then, picking a bump to go over is frequently better than twisting all over the place to try and avoid all the bumps. Often, I find myself looking for a very precise line that minimizes the jolts I get from stuff. Like ramp shaped sides of a rock or a bundle of roots, or even riding along a section of a (dry!) root, taking my up and over a big root.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    2,028
    learn to stay loose (it is not easy). loose grip; don't tense the muscles... flow like water down the mountain; let the bike move underneath you...

    it just sounds like a bunch of hippie affirmations but this stuff works. the thing i think most people who hate rigid bikes don't do or don't enjoy is giving your body enough time to adjust to the beating that is riding rigid quickly on real trails.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    23,788
    Well then, there's your problem, you need a wheelset (well rims specifically) upgrade to something with an inner width greater than 30mm, between 30-35mm being the sweet spot for me to allow use still of "normal" 2.4" tyres and still let the new PLUS tyres perform well. Relaced my wheels on my Monkey from Nukeproof hubs on WTB i25s to Velocity Dually45s and it's amazing what a transformation it's made, run a 29+ upfront and big 2.4" out back. Waiting to get my hands on a 650B+ to try on the rear for even more volume outback to more match the front.

    Quote Originally Posted by tradarcher View Post
    No I definitely ride for fun I was just asking how to increase my speed while riding rigid. My rims are ztr arch ex so I think about the biggest tire I can go with is a 2.4
    Karate Monkey with Dually45 rims, Maxxis Chronicle 3.0" Front/Maxxis Ardent 2.4" Rear.
    How to ride faster on full rigid-dscn1148.jpg

    This is what the same 2.4" tyre looks like mounted on a WTB i25 and Dually45.
    How to ride faster on full rigid-dscn1655_web.jpg
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    861
    My fastest tire setup is Racing Ralph 2.35" front and a 2.25" rear on I9 rims. Going bigger on the tire has the downside that you add more rotating weight. I think a lot depends on how you ride and what your goals are. For comfort go with big tires but for speed I think 2.35 or 2.4 is about as big as you should be running.

    Also, I am 160# and run 22 psi front and usually around 27 psi rear. Occasionally I will drop down to 20/25 but I get nervous about denting my rims.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: thickfog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    1,269
    Man, this thread is making me want to ride my Waltworks rigid bike really badly. Rode my hardtail Kona yesterday. It's fun, but nothing like rigid riding.

    Maybe tomorrow if I get out of work at a good hour!
    CRAMBA Chairman

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    Yea the racing Ralph's are great but I know several people that ride my home trail that have torn them to shreds

  25. #25
    nothing to see here
    Reputation: Stevob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    3,268
    I have On-One Chunky Monkey 2.4 trail extreme front and Smorgasbord 2.25 rear on my Carve with a Niner carbon fork. Sometimes I wish for a little more slack, but that's pretty rare.

    The other thing I find helps in the gnar is short stem and wider bars mounted a little higher than most, enabling me to keep plenty of flex in my elbows, which is critical to help you move about on the bike.

    Now if only I had a dropper post...
    I see hills.

    I want to climb them.

  26. #26
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    714
    There's a lot of great advice in this, but the biggest piece i can share is to...


    PUT YOUR WALLET DOWN. What you want to improve upon is between your ears. You know how to ride a bike, but you're just learning how to ride a rigid bike. Sure, there are improvements you can make to your bike, but it'll shred just like it is.

  27. #27
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    59
    Another tip, yes ridding loose and learning to ride rigid better will help improve your speed and comfort, but you still will probably get more fatigued on the rigid bike faster, it's good to know when to ride back, you might be able to ride your geared full suspension bike all day on knurly terrain, but you won't be able to go as long and feel as fresh on a SS rigid bike, especially if your running 26" wheels like my SS. I can last a hour to 2 hours on the rigid SS depending on the trail and how I feel, but once I start feeling fatigued I know it's best to just try and ride back as safely as possible, I don't crash often but if I do it's usually cause I let the ride go to far and was ridding in a more fatigued state.

  28. #28
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    100
    Only thing I will be purchasing for now is a slightly bigger front tire. The past couple days I have just been working on "riding light" and trying to loosen up.

  29. #29
    greedy
    Reputation: have2ride2day's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    482
    A rigid singlespeed simply forces you to ride with good form. You remember all those bike magazine articles telling you to ride in the "attack position" with elbows bent, stay off the brakes especially in the corners, pick good lines, use your momentum, etc..? Riding rigid, you are forced to follow these rules or pay for it. The price is pain.

  30. #30
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    12,211
    I'm not really timing my rides but my impression is that my time for a ride on the same route is faster when I go "deliberately" instead of "all out". If I go all out, I use so much energy that I need to slow down to recover before the next interesting section of trail.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  31. #31
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    433
    Quote Originally Posted by OneBadWagon View Post
    There's a lot of great advice in this, but the biggest piece i can share is to...


    PUT YOUR WALLET DOWN. What you want to improve upon is between your ears. You know how to ride a bike, but you're just learning how to ride a rigid bike. Sure, there are improvements you can make to your bike, but it'll shred just like it is.
    Priceless!

    Yeah can't buy your way out of the problem. That said, frame geometry and fit make a pretty big difference I think. Old style bikes, with aggressive angles, short top tube, long stem, hands out over the front axle-- that dog just don't hunt. Found that out when I slapped a 29" front wheel on my old bike. Next thing you know, I'm sitting back on my haunches, my butt is back over the rear axle, all the pressure is off my hands and the front end is light as a feather. Learned a lot from that exercise. Fortunately, modern bike design lends itself well to rigid, just gotta work with it.

    I think weight distribution is a key concept. Seems to me, mountain biking style has always favored weighting the front end. Keeping your weight low and forward helps with climbing and helps the front tire dig in on turns. If you ride like that, a front suspension is critical, and I suppose flat bars make at least a little bit of sense.

    Riding rigid, it's not precisely that you want your weight to the rear. It's that you need to be able to bias your weight forwards or to the back as conditions demand. A short stem is critical. Sweep bars give you better fore-and-aft wiggle room and a more ergonomic position to soak up bumps. A higher bar gives you options; you can always bend your elbows if you want to get down, but your arms are only so long if you want to sit up.

    Modern frames, with their long top tubes and slack angles, should be great for rigid, but fit is important. Too small and you can't get your bars high enough; too big and you can't get your weight far enough back. You can't fix a bad fit by swapping out your stem or seat post without thinking about it first, because now these things have a critical effect on handling.

    But, that said, if you have a modern frame that fits you, ten minutes with an allen wrench, moving your seat back a little and swapping out some spacers, will gain you more than a $500 carbon fork, all day long.
    Last edited by TampaDave; 08-31-2015 at 01:40 PM.

  32. #32
    mtbr member
    Reputation: asphaltdude's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    643
    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    I'm not really timing my rides but my impression is that my time for a ride on the same route is faster when I go "deliberately" instead of "all out". If I go all out, I use so much energy that I need to slow down to recover before the next interesting section of trail.
    Same for me. When I try to go all out I tend to overshoot corners, brake too hard and loose flow. When I concentrate on riding GOOD rather than FAST I actually go just as fast with less effort and way more flow and pleasure.

    Quote Originally Posted by have2ride2day View Post
    Riding rigid, you are forced to follow these rules or pay for it. The price is pain.
    +1. Riding rigid (SS) forces you to be ACTIVE on the bike.
    It's just a matter of practice, and being focused when on the bike.
    Ride more!

  33. #33
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Posts
    313
    My advice: ride more and just have fun.

    For me, simply riding more has made me faster. I've been hitting the trails since March and have been riding every day weather permits for the last two months. Each week I'm setting new PRs and enjoying riding more. Because my endurance is growing and my muscles are strengthening, when I revisit a trail after a couple days, it's noticeably easier.

  34. #34
    Category Winner
    Reputation: teamdicky's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    6,039
    I put most of my thoughts on riding rigid here:

    Bad Idea Racing: Share the Wisdom Wednesdays ((on Thursdays) but on Tuesday this time): Part Eight

    Hopefully there's a nugget in there for you.

    WWW.TEAMDICKY.COM

    I get paid 3 every time I post on MTBR.

  35. #35
    mtbr member
    Reputation: A1an's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    1,927
    Quote Originally Posted by jonshonda View Post
    How is full rigid different than rigid?

    Would a rigid be similar to a halfie? While a full rigid is 100% diamond hard?

    But wouldn't a halfie be like a hardtail? I is confused.
    Signature

Similar Threads

  1. Getting faster on my Rigid
    By robtre in forum Singlespeed
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 06-22-2014, 06:40 AM
  2. Replies: 34
    Last Post: 01-27-2014, 08:01 PM
  3. How do you get your friends to ride faster?
    By andy b. in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 51
    Last Post: 11-14-2012, 06:30 AM
  4. GDMBR: Full Rigid or Full Suspension?
    By albeant in forum Bikepacking and Bike Expedition
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 07-20-2012, 06:00 PM
  5. One thing that makes you ride faster...
    By Bill in Houston in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 69
    Last Post: 06-03-2012, 09:50 PM

Members who have read this thread: 5

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.