Riding Rigid Advise...- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Riding Rigid ...

    So I'm the process of setting up my S.I.R. 9 SS to fully rigid and wondering:

    1. What to expect from a ride quality perspective and what can I do to improve it?

    2. How should one adapt their riding when they go rigid? (e.g. body position, use knees & elbows for shock absorption, etc.).

    3. I read that bigger volume tires is a good way to go for fully rigid. Any tire recommendations?
    Last edited by quelocotony; 11-23-2011 at 08:11 PM.

  2. #2
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    Tubeless 2.2 or bigger running about 23 psi (155# rider weght). Otherwise, just concentrate on lines and using your legs as the shocks.

  3. #3
    fresh fish in stock...... SuperModerator
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    wut gjenkins said.

    line choice and flow....gotta relax to get faster on a rigid rig.

    don't forget about your bars and grips....that area will help with fatigue as well...


    and just so ya know - we don't say 'fully rigid'....just 'rigid'
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  4. #4
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    I'm running Schwalbe Racing Ralphs, 2.2 on the rear and 2.4 up front. Around 20 - 22 PSI in the front, a little more in the back (I'm around 175 lbs or so).

    Stay loose on the bike, don't lock your elbows, don't do the "death grip" thing.

    Also may want to consider carbon bars. I'm running Specialized carbons right now, they're okay, but I'm thinking of getting the Ragley Carnegies soon (lots of glowing reviews and such).

    Believe I've just sold the only non-rigid bike I have left. I'm pretty well hooked on the rigid thing.

  5. #5
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    1. Ride quality? Well changing from a front suspension fork to a rigid one will obviously result in more feedback. To combat the arm/upper body fatigue that can result you can.

    A. workout your upper body
    B. run carbon bars with thick grips

    2. Yes, ride loose and let your arms and legs absorb more. Yes you will notice more fatigue overall until you get used to riding rigid. (See "A" above) .

    3. +1 on the Ralphs tubeless. Tire pressure IMO is a key factor to enjoying rigid riding.
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  6. #6
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    I have 2 suggestions:

    First: don't change anything other than the fork. Go ride. See what it feels like get used to the setup as is, existing tires etc. Think more about the trail and about where your tires are going, both front and rear. Think about what if anything hurts then work on your position, stand more, head up more, start placing that front tire. The most difficult aspect to riding rigid is that thinking part, you have to read the trail, place those tires, pick the smoothest line, the line with the most traction and the safest line. Rigid means not turning your brain off quite as much as you can with a fork or almost as off as using full suspension.

    Second: if you don't have it already convert to tubeless, it will save you pinched tubes as you learn.

    When you have a couple dozen miles come back and search for answers to what you haven't been able to alleviate with tire pressure, body position and line selection. No sense in changing anything or looking for expectation before you have even experienced them. How can you know if a change is better if you have no baseline. Get that baseline it takes awhile on a rigid, then we can talk fine tuning.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by quelocotony View Post
    So I'm the process of setting up my S.I.R. 9 SS to fully rigid and wondering:

    1. What to expect from a ride quality perspective and what can I do to improve it?

    2. How should one adapt their riding when they go rigid? (e.g. body position, use knees & elbows for shock absorption, etc.).

    3. I read that bigger volume tires is a good way to go for fully rigid. Any tire recommendations?
    Key word here is RIGID. Mindset has much to do with how much you will enjoy riding rigid. A common post seems to be, "how do I get my rigid fork to not feel like a rigid fork". The best carbon bars, squishiest grips and tubeless tires are not going to compare to even a $120 Rockshox Dart. Now that we got that out of the way....

    Ride quality....requires 100% attention to the trail and lines. No point and shoot here. Completely changes your perspective on old, familiar trails.

    Riding style? Like someone else has already pointed out, stay loose. Characteristics on the trail that you used to not even consider, roots that would go unnoticed with an 80mm fork, will now rattle your teeth if you fail to use proper body english to ride over them. The "upper body workout" mentioned, you will understand or suffer.

    Proper pressure with a large volume tire IMHO, is the best thing you can do for a rigid fork. Do a search on this subject, lots of great choices. I have been running a Panaracer Rampage 2.35" at 22psi and I am about 160Ibs ready to ride. I do not run tubeless and have no problems. When you do not have suspension to isolate you from the impact of running your rims into objects, you will learn to adjust your riding style to ride over them.

  8. #8
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    1. What to expect from a ride quality perspective and what can I do to improve it?

    It's going to get bumpy really fast, and you will notice all the high speed braking areas that all those jerks left for you. I would first just keep everything the same but the fork of course and see how it goes. From there I would look at either a bigger tire tubeless or grips.

    2. How should one adapt their riding when they go rigid? (e.g. body position, use knees & elbows for shock absorption, etc.).

    Get loose, real loose. After a bit you will realize how much faster you are and how hard you can rail corners along with tight twisty singletrack. We all make the mistake of braking in the bumpy stuff, you will pay for it twice as much on a rigid fork.

    3. I read that bigger volume tires is a good way to go for fully rigid. Any tire recommendations?

    Ardent 2.4
    WWLT 2.55
    Rampage 2.3
    Stout 2.3
    Dissent 2.5
    RaRa 2.4
    RK 2.2 (I like this tire riding rigid, it hooks up really well and is not a boat anchor)

    You can look at the tire swap thread in the 29er forum if you want something bigger and to maybe get ride of some times you no longer use. I will also say I think you benefit from bigger volume tires front and rear vs just front. I run a Ardent 2.4/WWLT 2.55(2.3) on flows tubeless. Once that Ardent hits about 20psi I am in the perfect cushion zone without any squirm.

    Which fork are you going with? That will also give it's own riding characteristics. If it's a Niner carbon I would say it's one of the better forks I have ridden, just when you think you are about to knock your teeth out the fork flexs and it's buttery smooth.
    Last edited by Mr Pink57; 11-08-2011 at 03:19 PM.
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  9. #9
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    Good job!

    Riding rigid is in a world by itself...

    ... I've been Rigid since way back!

    Yes as said Fat "light" Tires, DH tires are OK, but you'll have to push them. A good confy seat as well. Steel, Ti or Carbon frames are better, but don't expect you to go buy one just ride whatever you have for now.

    Pick good lines by studying the trail you are moving over as you ride, easier said than done, but your skills will improve as you progress. Look ahead instead of looking down.

    Learn to scuff your tire off rocks, this will require improving your balance and learning to trust your ability. By doing this you can ride much faster and choose finer lines. Going over rocks is OK by scuffing is faster!

    Learn to pump the bars over small stuff by un-weighting. Also un-weighting the rear will provide you with a smoother ride. Learn to float over stuff by using your body as a shock.

    Over large gaps or holes just manual, as well as log overs.

    Enjoy all the input you recieve from the trail as you are much more in contact to what your riding over as a rigid rider.

    Most important don't ride over your head, just take it easy and progress.

    Good Luck...

  10. #10
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    I second that the point of a rigid setup is not to replicate suspension but to get a new, better riding experience. I've been riding my new Niner One 9 for about two weeks and it has been an eye-opener.

    First, except for my All Mountain sled (2011 Specialized Enduro) I am never going back to 26-inch wheels. 29ers are fantastic.

    Second, my chest and back hurt for a week. You get a real workout on a rigid bike on trails designed for full suspension. Never realized how passive you can get on a high tech super bike.

    Third, I like my carbon fork. It feels responsive but not heavy and dull like the steel fork on my Sawyer.

    Singlespeed is hard! Yes, you need to learn to control floe and momentum but sometimes you need some brute force. I hate walking.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by quelocotony View Post
    So I'm the process of setting up my S.I.R. 9 SS to fully rigid and wondering:

    1. What to expect from a ride quality perspective and what can I do to improve it?

    2. How should one adapt their riding when they go rigid? (e.g. body position, use knees & elbows for shock absorption, etc.).

    3. I read that bigger volume tires is a good way to go for fully rigid. Any tire recommendations?
    Welcome to rigid, that is, real, riding! Now you will feel really in sync with the bike, and how it rides the terrain.
    Ride quality perspective will be in terms of feedback from the trail, how to choose best lines, no bobbing uphill, no fork diving when braking downhill, among others mentioned already.
    To "improve" ride quality.... may this be interpreted as to make the ride more compliant? If so, i use Ergon Cork Grips, good full finger gloves, longer riser handlebar, WTB Rocket V saddle.
    IMO, rigid riding is an improvement in itself !
    Adapting the rider means been relaxed to react to the terrain features and flow. Not only knees and elbows, hands and feet, shoulders, hips and having a balanced position on the bike are important.
    Working the bike, or 'body english' will now be your road (trail) to success. Might need to reduce speed and re-read known trails to allow the body to adapt. Feedback from the trail will teach you how to approach features and position yourself on the bike.
    I ride my tires tubeless, WTB Exiwolf 2.35. Yes, bigger volume, lower psi. As stated in the forum, testing tires, psi's and treads that work on your trails is the way to go.
    Again, welcome and enjoy !
    Simple, not easy.

  12. #12
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    Good job! Yup, that's a good bit o learnin' ....

    Quote Originally Posted by rockcrusher View Post
    ... don't change anything other than the fork. Go ride. See what it feels like get used to the setup as is, existing tires etc...
    This is some of the best advice I've seen regarding converting to rigid. If you can already handle long rides with the suspension fork, you body and bike are probably *close* to being in harmony.

    I had a carbon bar laying around that I put on when fist I converted to rigid. Turns out the stem I had jacked up my hand position in a major way and that hurt. It hurt just riding on a paved path, let alone on trails. I wound up throwing the old bars back on and everything was good to go.

    FWIW, if you are transitioning from an existing squishy fork, the Kona P2 rigid fork available here Bikeman Kona P2 29er Disc & Canti Fork is only $30. It has an A-C of 465 mm and I believe the new Niner forks have an A-C of 470 mm, the rakes are pretty similar ( 47mm & 45mm, IIRC) so the handling between the two should be pretty similar. I picked up the P2 because I wanted to try rigid on the cheap. Now I'm torn because my technolust for the Niner carbon fork is in direct conflict with my penny pinching Scottish heritage.
    It's not about being better than others, it's about getting the best out of myself.

  13. #13
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    Thanks everyone for the feedback and tons of very useful advise.

    Riding SS for the last couple years has been liberating. So I figured going "rigid" (thanks Chum) would take that experience to the next level. From what I've read here and in other forums -- it will.

    Looking forward to it. Will definitely report back on my transition & experience.

  14. #14
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    Lots of good advice, I really like running my jones bars with the rigid fork, while I run a flat bar with my suspension. People ask why, and I make something up. But riding a bar with more sweep helps to distribute shock and allow steering control on the bumpy stuff.

  15. #15
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    This book is a must read and will save your arms when riding rigid.
    Lee Likes Bikes

    Lee's mantra of riding fundamentals, "Heavy Foot, Light Hands" is the key to riding rigid IMHO. On my 1st ride, I get reminded pretty hard when I don't ride with heavy foot, light hands... LOL

  16. #16
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    I like how everyone keeps saying "loose" like they are talking about their mom's vagina.

    Please guys, the trick to riding rigid is that there are no tricks. You either like riding rigid or you don't. If you like it, then you go out and start touting your magic bullet- thick grips, carbon bars, 2.4" tires, etc.

    Sure, stay relaxed, it is a good thing, but you are probably going to get the **** knocked out for a couple rides.

    But really, everyone is getting me excited about my advice, so here is a long ass soliloquy for you- don't get cushy grips, get grips that work for you. I like grips with wider diameter and not too squishy, cause then the grips flex too much when I'm torquing the bar. Do stay relaxed, and definitely keep your elbows really bent, so get that chest down. If you hit some bumps at a fast pace, loft the tire a little to clear them. If you can't, I find that if I push down a lightly with my hands on the bumps, it keeps my arms and shoulder relaxed and it feels better.

    And the most important aspect of rigid- have good brakes. If you hit **** and have to really pull on the levers, it means your hands are too tight, and then you are ****ed.

    Anyway, if you have read this far, you should know that you ought to stick with a suspension fork, cause rigid is always rough, no matter what you do.

  17. #17
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    why is it not the same if i ask the question, "how do i ride a suspension fork"?

    honestly, i really don't know how.

    probably 30 years from now i will start that thread.
    everything sucks but my vacuum cleaner.

  18. #18
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishcreek View Post
    why is it not the same if i ask the question, "how do i ride a suspension fork"?

    honestly, i really don't know how.

    probably 30 years from now i will start that thread.
    Start it tonight so I have something worth reading after work tomorrow.

  19. #19
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    Do we really need a tutorial for this?

  20. #20
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    Stay back - Stay Loose - Stay Stoked. Oh and a 70mm-80mm Stem works real good on SIR 9 Rigid.

  21. #21
    Singleton
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    wow! good thread with meaty tips and techniques! keep em comin guys!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vahe_Vala View Post
    Stay back - Stay Loose - Stay Stoked. Oh and a 70mm-80mm Stem works real good on SIR 9 Rigid.
    I'm at 90mm on a large, but yeah, along with the "don't lock your elbows", this is about all you need to know. You'll figure the rest out by yourself.

    As you learn, you will become more precise in your tire placement, you will learn to ignore/disregard all but the most hazardous trail features, and your body will be literally hammered into a shape more suitable for rigid MTBing.

    I have found that long, rough DHs make me more tired than anything else - mostly due to lack of opportunity to practice them.

    Have fun!

    -F

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by TreeFarmer View Post
    This is some of the best advice I've seen regarding converting to rigid. If you can already handle long rides with the suspension fork, you body and bike are probably *close* to being in harmony.

    I had a carbon bar laying around that I put on when fist I converted to rigid. Turns out the stem I had jacked up my hand position in a major way and that hurt. It hurt just riding on a paved path, let alone on trails. I wound up throwing the old bars back on and everything was good to go.

    FWIW, if you are transitioning from an existing squishy fork, the Kona P2 rigid fork available here Bikeman Kona P2 29er Disc & Canti Fork is only $30. It has an A-C of 465 mm and I believe the new Niner forks have an A-C of 470 mm, the rakes are pretty similar ( 47mm & 45mm, IIRC) so the handling between the two should be pretty similar. I picked up the P2 because I wanted to try rigid on the cheap. Now I'm torn because my technolust for the Niner carbon fork is in direct conflict with my penny pinching Scottish heritage.
    I went from a p2 to a niner carbon and didn't notice much difference. If anything I think the carbon was stiffer on big hits and totally ridged when hit directly. A carbon handlebar with the right reach stem made more of a difference.
    2011 Kona unit with some carbon.

  24. #24
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    Jeff Jones Bikes are great for riding with no suspension.

    Pisgah Pale ale is excellent after riding with no suspension.

  25. #25
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    Bring two beers with you on your rides preferably something good and strong IPA etc. now open one of the beers drink it now go ride your bike and then at some point stop and drink another beer, chill a bit now ride again. Now stop and drink that extra beer you brought with you because you drank one before the ride.
    and maybe keep your eyes posted farther up the trail dont ask why but I do that and I seam find better lines.

  26. #26
    scrappy
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    Been runnin a ti carver bar with ergon g1 grips for a couple of years on a nice steel rigid ss and large volume tires. This setup has helped me get through a good number of long days

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Bee View Post
    Bring two beers with you on your rides preferably something good and strong IPA etc. now open one of the beers drink it now go ride your bike and then at some point stop and drink another beer, chill a bit now ride again. Now stop and drink that extra beer you brought with you because you drank one before the ride.
    and maybe keep your eyes posted farther up the trail dont ask why but I do that and I seam find better lines.
    I especially appreciate the beer techniques --- I knew there was a reason I am so drawn to rigid riding.

  28. #28
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    A few of details that I see myself applying:

    - constantly looking for the best place to position the front tyre: maybe that root junction makes a small ramp that is smoother then the spot 2 inches off, etc.
    - maybe I can use the first bump to launch myself just high enough to just skim the rest
    - use my legs as the front suspension too: just a minute change in balance, that allows my hands and arms to stay relaxed

    "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"

  29. #29
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    I'm not going to give any tips. I just want to say that I have a FS 29er that I just don't want to ride anymore. It's such a couch I find it boring. I like how riding rigid makes me feel like I am always riding on the edge of the envelope (between excitement and danger). That makes it so much more fun. The FS would mute so much of the trail I would always enter corners way too hot.

    I now use a fat front tire (Larry) on my 1x9, and a 2.4 Specialized Purgatory on my SS @ 18psi. I like them both very much. Since it doesn't matter if I'm faster or sower, it only matters how much fun it is.

  30. #30
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    1) you're going to ride rigid and are worried about ride quality? it's going to be rough, as in, no suspension. what else do you want to know?

    2) just ride your bike, it's not rocket science

    3) no

    i swear i'm not grumpy.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by cr45h View Post

    2) just ride your bike, it's not rocket science
    Not sure I agree.

    I've learned & improved my riding a great deal since going single speed a couple years back. I also think that many of the suggestions on this thread such as line choice, body English, stem size and even tire selection have been helpful.

    Personally, I'd like to draw from the collective experience from other riders so as to not have to learn the hard way, which is what you're suggesting.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by quelocotony View Post
    Not sure I agree.

    I've learned & improved my riding a great deal since going single speed a couple years back. I also think that many of the suggestions on this thread such as line choice, body English, stem size and even tire selection have been helpful.

    Personally, I'd like to draw from the collective experience from other riders so as to not have to learn the hard way, which is what you're suggesting.
    Again dude, it's just bike riding. You'll figure out what works once you ride it a couple of times. It's not that much different.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by umarth View Post
    And the most important aspect of rigid- have good brakes. If you hit **** and have to really pull on the levers, it means your hands are too tight, and then you are ****ed.
    I couldn't agree more.

    I am wrapping up my first season of riding SS on a late 80s Diamondback. I have ridden about 500 miles of single track on it. It has been great. If I wasn't in my mid forties and loved beer and chips, I'd be ripped but I am not. Anyway, the thing the have noticed the most and my priority for this winter's bike project is brakes. Braking (or lack of it) is key. If I knew that I could stop on a dime, without much effort, there would be sections that I could try to roll through to keep my momentum. As it is now, I have v-brakes and I have to put some effort in to maintain a comfort level on the downhill and rolling terrain. I am busy looking for a used frame that won’t require a chain tensioner that is disc brake compatible.
    Last edited by -chs-; 11-23-2011 at 08:03 AM.

  34. #34
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    The key is to stay loose:

    -Throw on some new age music, I suggest a Yanni lick.

    -Pop in some bath salts.

    -Light some scented candles.

    -On techy downhill sections, close your eyes and visualize yourself riding across the clouds.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by quelocotony View Post
    Not sure I agree.

    I've learned & improved my riding a great deal since going single speed a couple years back. I also think that many of the suggestions on this thread such as line choice, body English, stem size and even tire selection have been helpful.

    Personally, I'd like to draw from the collective experience from other riders so as to not have to learn the hard way, which is what you're suggesting.
    also, that is all common knowledge riding techniques. there isn't some magic formula for riding rigid. just ride smarter..

  36. #36
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    My preferences for a rigid SS:

    1) slightly higher h-bar position
    2) slightly shorter stem
    3) fat front tire run tubeless at low psi
    4) "alt" bar like Titec J-bar or Origin8 Space Off Road 2
    5) if not an "alt" bar, then a carbon bars
    6) as wide or wider bar than usual
    7) shorter chainstay from choice of frame/chainring/cog
    8) 180mm cranks
    9) saddle with ti rails and some flex in the back like Fizik Gobi wing flex; and
    10) titanium seatpost if within your budget.
    11) ESI Chunky grips

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sizzler View Post
    The key is to stay loose:

    -Throw on some new age music, I suggest a Yanni lick.

    -Pop in some bath salts.

    -Light some scented candles.

    -On techy downhill sections, close your eyes and visualize yourself riding across the clouds.
    win win winnerrrrr

  38. #38
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    biggest difference for me is the front tire goes where i tell it to go. so much more control compared to having a mechanical thing trying to negotiate its way around.

  39. #39
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    Thanks for all the feedback.

    So far, here are the mods I'm considering:
    - Niner Nude Carbon Fork (just arrived)
    - Shorter Stem. Gonna try a 90mm from my bike stuff pile (currently running a 110mm)
    - Already running an Easton Carbon Bar
    - Look into larger front brake rotor. Currently running 160mm on XT Hydros.
    - RDO Carbon seatpost on order from Speedgoat
    - Bigger volume tires. Ardent 2.4. front ($44 from Tree Fort) and Slant 6 2.2 in rear also from my bike stuff pile (set up tubeless). Switching out the Ignitor/Crossmark currently on the bike.
    - I have Gobi XM seat on my Jet 9 that I may try out
    - Practice my beer - ride - beer - ride intervals as suggested by Mr.Bee
    - Download some Yani on to my ipod & visualize riding on clouds
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Riding Rigid Advise...-carbon-fork.jpg  

    Last edited by quelocotony; 11-12-2011 at 10:24 AM.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by quelocotony View Post
    Thanks for all the feedback.

    So far, here are the mods I'm considering:
    - Niner Nude Carbon Fork (just arrived)
    - Shorter Stem. Gonna try a 90mm from my bike stuff pile (currently running a 110mm)
    - Already running an Easton Carbon Bar
    - Look into larger front brake rotor. Currently running 160mm on XT Hydros.
    - RDO Carbon seatpost on order from Speedgoat
    - Bigger volume tires. Ardent 2.4. front ($44 from Tree Fort) and Slant 6 2.2 in rear also from my bike stuff pile (set up tubeless). Switching out the Ignitor/Crossmark currently on the bike.
    - I have Gobi XM seat on my Jet 9 that I may try out
    - Practice my beer - ride - beer - ride intervals as suggested by Mr.Bee
    - Download some Yani on to my ipod & visualize riding on clouds
    853 steel, 29er, carbron fork/bar/post, fat tubeless tires, Gobi saddle - you will be the King of Compliance! OK, you could have a fatter rear tire, but that's nitpicking. I run a Crossmark 2.1 in the back with relatively high psi and have no complaints.

  41. #41
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    A pair of high volume tires and Changing the fork and bars from steel and aluminum to Carbon made the biggest difference for me.
    Last edited by 2002maniac; 11-12-2011 at 04:10 PM.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Bee View Post
    Bring two beers with you on your rides preferably something good and strong IPA etc. now open one of the beers drink it now go ride your bike and then at some point stop and drink another beer, chill a bit now ride again. Now stop and drink that extra beer you brought with you because you drank one before the ride.
    and maybe keep your eyes posted farther up the trail dont ask why but I do that and I seam find better lines.
    Um, I think waiting to drink that beer you've been carrying with you on the ride will just explode after riding rigid, ya better leave it in the car You're either going to like rigid or you're not. It's going to be significantly harder than a suspension fork and you will have to carefully pick your lines as others have said. For some that is the appeal, I rode rigid for two years and just put a fork on the front recently, the trails here can be a bit brutal on the wrists. I'm keeping the rigid fork in case I feel like swapping back and forth. I highly recommend tubeless btw.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusSommers View Post
    Lots of good advice, I really like running my jones bars with the rigid fork, while I run a flat bar with my suspension. People ask why, and I make something up. But riding a bar with more sweep helps to distribute shock and allow steering control on the bumpy stuff.
    This ^ ...For many riders, more sweep is more control on a rigid.

    And on point 2 - moving my body weight back a bit has helped me recently, so maybe consider a shorter stem and layback post if you get beat up.

  44. #44
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    i switch from hard tail to rigid without giving it much thought at all.....after all they are both bikes.one is just a little more forgiving through the chunk...just do it
    Humble self-proclaimed nothing.

  45. #45
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    All the points suggested in this thread are great. An enjoyable read. Now im going to ask a related question: Will a niner fork make me faster than my 4 pound 100mm fork? If proper technique is used, which one will have a faster lap time?

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by IndianaXC View Post
    All the points suggested in this thread are great. An enjoyable read. Now im going to ask a related question: Will a niner fork make me faster than my 4 pound 100mm fork? If proper technique is used, which one will have a faster lap time?
    Climbing? Yes, probably so. Descending? Maybe not so much. My lap times on my regular ride average out about the same when comparing my rigid SS to my recently sold squishy fork bike. I'm not the world's most aggressive fearless descender out there, so your results may vary a good bit.

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by IndianaXC View Post
    All the points suggested in this thread are great. An enjoyable read. Now im going to ask a related question: Will a niner fork make me faster than my 4 pound 100mm fork? If proper technique is used, which one will have a faster lap time?
    You are asking a very open ended question. How rough/smooth is the trail, how much climbing/descending and how long is a lap? Probably the one place where I will say that a rigid fork consistently has an advantage over a good suspension fork is climbing. Other than that, sure you can ride a rigid bike as fast as a HT, but IMHO, it is not going to make you faster. And if its a trail that requires lots of body english to ride smooth, do enough laps and sooner or later, the rigid fork will slow you down.

    I can remember watching an interview with John Tomac talking about using one of those new fangled suspension forks in a downhill race and the advantage he felt that it gave him. This was back when he used the same bike to race and win the XC event. If good handling skills were going to make someone faster riding rigid over a HT, he would have done it.
    Last edited by BrianU; 11-22-2011 at 09:17 PM.

  48. #48
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    rigid rocks (the clock?)

    Quote Originally Posted by IndianaXC View Post
    Will a niner fork make me faster than my 4 pound 100mm fork? If proper technique is used, which one will have a faster lap time?
    Your stopwatch will tell you; it depends on the trail and rider (i.e., too much suspension will always slow you down). If you're curious about going rigid, get a Salsa rigid fork for $100 and try it out instead of investing $400. At worst you use it for training or sell it for a $50 loss.

    Btw, I don't race but my 4 pound 100mm fork ('08 F29) is in my storage room gathering dust and my Niner carbon fork sees use 1-2 per week.

  49. #49
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    Just take the thing out to Boulder and Big Cedar - these trails will teach you to relax on the bike and also that if you don't pick the right line it's gonna be a sore afternoon

  50. #50
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    Holy crap that is a long list of parts...just to go rigid?

    Someone stated earlier in the thread to keep everything the same and just swap the fork out. This is sound advice. You don't necessarily NEED a carbon bar, super high volume tires, different stem, blood sacrifice, or whatever. All you need is a rigid fork and a slightly different riding style. I can't tell you what that riding style is as everyone is different, but you will figure it out within minutes of your first rigid ride.
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  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by A1an View Post
    Holy crap that is a long list of parts...just to go rigid?
    Ya it's a long list and maybe some not crucial except of course for the Yani, beer interval training and cloud riding visualization suggestions.

    Thru this thread, though, I did pick up a few useful tips and I also realized I'm running too long of a stem on both my bikes. Which I've since corrected and I think has helped me ride more relaxed and definitely puts less strain in my lower back.

    And since this bike is a new build, I was already planning to replace my seatpost and run bigger volume tires. Most of the other stuff including the carbon bar and shorter stem, I already had.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by A1an View Post
    Holy crap that is a long list of parts...just to go rigid?

    Someone stated earlier in the thread to keep everything the same and just swap the fork out. This is sound advice. You don't necessarily NEED a carbon bar, super high volume tires, different stem, blood sacrifice, or whatever. All you need is a rigid fork and a slightly different riding style. I can't tell you what that riding style is as everyone is different, but you will figure it out within minutes of your first rigid ride.
    +1. I have just a few months on a rigid. Riding style makes the most difference. I ran a Kenda SB8 2.1. Just play with the air pressure and take notice in your riding style (heavy foot, light hands). You'll do fine. You'll be reminded quickly to buck up on the riding style if you don't. LOL

  53. #53
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    Use 1-2 wraps of electrical tape instead of grips.

    Make sure you have an aluminum bar.

    Skinny "tubed" tires with at least 45psi.

    Try and tense up every muscle in your entire body. This helps your bike to "deflect" off of bumps/rocks AND it makes you a stronger rider!

    Tilt your saddle's nose at a 45degree angle. Up or down, doesn't matter which.

    Hope this helps!

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flat Ark View Post
    Use 1-2 wraps of electrical tape instead of grips.

    Make sure you have an aluminum bar.

    Skinny "tubed" tires with at least 45psi.

    Try and tense up every muscle in your entire body. This helps your bike to "deflect" off of bumps/rocks AND it makes you a stronger rider!

    Tilt your saddle's nose at a 45degree angle. Up or down, doesn't matter which.

    Hope this helps!
    Awesome!

  55. #55
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    Finally installed the Niner Fork. Weather permitting, I plan to take her out for her first ride this week.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Riding Rigid Advise...-321715_10150499617896329_740626328_10832882_1080624004_o.jpg  


  56. #56
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    Net Result of riding rigid = Slower speed, faster pain and cleaner riding lines.

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flat Ark View Post
    Use 1-2 wraps of electrical tape instead of grips.

    Make sure you have an aluminum bar.

    Skinny "tubed" tires with at least 45psi.

    Try and tense up every muscle in your entire body. This helps your bike to "deflect" off of bumps/rocks AND it makes you a stronger rider!

    Tilt your saddle's nose at a 45degree angle. Up or down, doesn't matter which.

    Hope this helps!
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