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 Post subject: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 7:09 am 
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Anyone familiar with Chromag? http://www.chromagbikes.com/collections/bikes/current

Alternately, have you been riding full suss, and then added a modern geo hard tail to the stable? These things look fun, but what's the reality?

Been thinking about something that is more amenable for longer miles in the saddle, but allows for some DH fun as well. In particular, if I do something foolish and ride the Arch ride again next year, this type of bike looks more appealing.

My eye immediately goes to the Doctahawk, the Stylus and the Primer, with their slack head-angles, short chainstays and steep seat tube angles, but perhaps the Surface, being a little less slack could be a better choice for the riding I have in mind. (Chromag appears to make the same version of almost each bike - the more expensive in Canada, and the less expensive in Taiwan w/ exception of Doctahawk).

After enjoying the squishy bliss of 170mm/150mm Evil Insurgency, I'm hesitant about this path, but also intrigued.

What's your experience with a modern geo HT?

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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:14 pm 
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A hard tail “more amenable to longer miles in the saddle”? Whatchu been smokin’? Get a big-forked modern one for local fun, but take the full suss for long days in the saddle. Your aging back will thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 2:48 pm 
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Upon some more reflection, full chromoly frame is may not be much weight savings and perhaps not the right type of bike for what I had in mind. I think I just got distracted by the pretty girl at the bar with the crazy eyes. And yet, I'm still intrigued...

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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 2:54 pm 
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Most all of the long races/rides are done on HT. My butt couldn't handle it but that seems to be the steed of choice for those folks

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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 3:15 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 3:25 pm 
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Dirtrider wrote:
Most all of the long races/rides are done on HT. My butt couldn't handle it but that seems to be the steed of choice for those folks


Yes, those are really long races, and the hardtail choice is more about those folks and their desire for simplicity and reliability. Hell, many of them ride full rigid single speed for that reason. They are gluttons for punishment...not sure that’s what avidtest is after.

On the other hand, the Brits have been crazy for big-forked slack hardtails for years in all kinds of gnarly conditions. I think maybe that’s the kind of fun he’d enjoy.


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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 5:43 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 8:58 pm 
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Dirtrider wrote:
Yes, those are really long races, and the hardtail choice is more about those folks and their desire for simplicity and reliability. Hell, many of them ride full rigid single speed for that reason. They are gluttons for punishment...not sure that’s what avidtest is after.

Simplicity and efficiency are big reasons people run hardtails for bikepacking and endurance riding, but also because they can run a frame bag and in many cases a larger seat bag. 29er and plus wheels have made hardtails even more versatile. Lots of people ride full suspension bikes for these types of riding as well. There are pros and cons for each, both can work very well. You don't have to be a glutton for punishment to make good use of a hardtail especially in Socal.

The Chromag hardtails are nice and probably a blast to ride, but honestly if you're riding stuff that will take advantage of their slack geometry and long fork travel you'd probably have more fun on the full suspension bike anyways. We have a lot of easier trails in Socal that a hard tail is perfect for, and IMO you're better off getting something more xc-oriented to take advantage of that if you're going to get a hard tail.

My Carver has fairly old school geometry (69* head angle) but I can ride it on anything technical and steep I ride my Ibis on, I just have to dial it back a bit and pick my lines more carefully. You'll have to do that to some extent with any hardtail given the lack of rear suspension. On the other hand the Carver is a super comfortable and efficient bike to ride all day long. The only thing I'd consider replacing it with is a short travel xc bike like an Ibis Ripley, Intense Sniper or Salsa Spearfish. And even then I'd keep the Carver and convert it to singlespeed....

A few other bikes to check out below -

Carver Ti - one of the cheapest production Ti bike you'll be able to find at $1400. http://carverbikes.com/bikes/titanium-420/

Santa Cruz Chameleon
Cove Hummer https://covebike.com/products/hummer-27-5
Kona Honzo
Surly Karate Monkey or other model - great value
On One bikes used to have some great deals, looks like they still sell Titus Ti frames for around $750. Their chromoly bikes are nice too - I had one til it was stolen. https://www.on-one.co.uk/

Keep an eye out for demo events and see if you can test ride whatever hard tails they have.


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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 4:33 am 
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Evedog, I forgot to mention that I also blame you and your TR's for this line of thinking. :D

(thank you).

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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 8:11 am 
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Woodie is not modern "long/low" geometry, but here's my take on what you're asking.

For longer rides, a few things come into play. 1. Lack of suspension makes pedalling more efficient. 2. Lighter weight makes pedalling more efficient yet again. 3. Hard tail has less maintenance issues on an extended ride.

Having ridden mine for nearly 5 years now, I would not do anything but a 29er or 27.5+ in hard tail. The wheel geometry really makes a huge difference when the back doesn't move.

At one point I thought about something like the "aggressive" hard tail, but I find I either want the real efficiency and light weight of the "XC" bike or the full squish of the Trail bike.

But I'll tell you what, as easy as it is to pedal up hill, it sure beats up your back on longer rides.

If it's something to cover longer miles in more comfort, maybe one of the newer XC full suspensions? They have much slacker geometry than they used to, however, I think they still lean you over more than the really slack bikes do.


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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 9:53 am 
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Something else to think about when considering hardtail vs full suspension... probably the greatest weakness I find with my hardtail is actually climbing rocky/technical/loose trail. Without rear suspension it is surprisingly easy for the rear end to lose traction. Rear suspension helps stop the rear end from getting bounced around, and the more your tire stays in contact with the ground the better you can keep climbing. One more reason to consider shorter travel xc full suspension.

On the other hand the hardtail rolls over rocks nicely with fewer pedal strikes, since there is no rear suspension to compress and lower the BB. My Mojo3 is terrible for pedal strikes. Demoing a Ripley last weekend, had way fewer pedal strikes with much stiffer suspension, shorter travel and bigger wheels.


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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 12:54 pm 
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Well that's that. My shortest lived bike infatuation to date.

Next!

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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 8:02 pm 
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Had a Canfield nimble 9, 100 mm fork, a while back. Sold it and regret doing so. That bike was a super fun alternative to my FS bike. Been thinking of getting another HT with a 120mm fork.

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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 12:44 pm 
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evdog wrote:
Something else to think about when considering hardtail vs full suspension... probably the greatest weakness I find with my hardtail is actually climbing rocky/technical/loose trail. Without rear suspension it is surprisingly easy for the rear end to lose traction. Rear suspension helps stop the rear end from getting bounced around, and the more your tire stays in contact with the ground the better you can keep climbing...


Exactly. In 2003 I bought the then-new Spesh Epic with the “brain” inertia valve shock, which the magazines proclaimed the “holy grail” of suspension design because it “climbs like a hardtail”. Which was true — unfortunately. I suffered an epiphany one day trying to climb the loose original La Costa line that VDM replaced. My latest-thing bike did not bob at all as advertised. Instead I spun the rear wheel, then watched intently from behind as two guys on squishy bikes bobbed their way up the hill with rear wheels glued to the dips and bumps.

There are many reasons to buy hardtails, but climbing single track is not one of them. A lot of folks are very skillful at climbing on them, but that’s more them than the bike.


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 Post subject: Re: Chromag? Hard tail
PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2019 10:29 am 
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The sage titanium flow motion looks like a nice bike.

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