Santa Cruz Heckler 27.5 27.5 Full Suspension

5/5 (2 Reviews)

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Product Description

Now with the same super awesome geometry as the acclaimed Bronson, plus 150mm travel and 27.5 inch wheels to match, there's been no half measures in the new Heckler's development. Legions of Heckler owners testify to the durability of the design, marching on through season after season while other bikes at this price point simply rattle to pieces. The aluminum frame is now stiffer and lighter than its predecessor, with a single collet axle pivot, 142mm rear end and a direct mount rear derailleur hanger keeping things tight and tidy.

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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by GOOOO a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: February 13, 2015

Strengths:    Ability to go down loose, rocky, rutty stuff without a lot of drama
Price -- you get a decent bike for a relatively low price

Weaknesses:    A little heavy, with XT trail pedals and a KS LEV, it's weighing in at 32 lbs.

Bottom Line:   
Let me start by stating my previous bike was a 2002 Superlight. This 2015 Heckler is a huge leap in bike tech: 1.) 15mm thru axle up front/142mm spacing rear, 2.) Tubeless tires 3.) 23mm internal width rims (vs 19mm Crosstrails), 4.) tapered headtube, 5.) Hydraulic discs (vs. mechanical), 6.) the Pike fork (vs. Float 100), 7.) 27.5 wheelsize and, 8.) my only modification, the LEV dropper post. So keep in mind I'm coming off a (much loved) dinosaur bike.

On this bike, I just point it downhill and it rolls over virtually everything. Miss a switchback? Stay calm and just pound through the rough (I know, not trail friendly, but sometimes "stuff" happens). 150mm of travel on the Pike is so different than 100mm on the float. Adding to my confidence when headed down is the dropper--no more hanging off the back of the seat and having a floaty front wheel. I just get low and go. Let's see how long the post lasts--I only use it for sketchy stuff, not every hill. The wide bars, stiff shock and axle allow me to muscle through trail ruts too, no more tip toeing around. Tubeless tires are great for traction too (can hardly wait to see what it's like the first time I have to change them). Hydraulic disc allow for true one-finger braking--my forearms are no longer sore at the bottom of the hill from tugging on those old mechanical Avids.

That's it for going down. Going up? The Heckler is about five pounds heavier than my Superlight. When I first got it, I could definitely feel it when starting from a stationary position--initial acceleration was not as crisp. After about the third ride, I was used to it. Now going up hills feels about the same, even though I'm most certainly putting out more power to get the rig up the hill. The bigger tire size seems to roll over small bumps and undulations easier when going uphill, which is nice. I just leave the rear CTD shock in "trail" most of the time. If it's steep, without bumps (rare), I'll put it in "climb" but as soon as those bumps come along, I put it back in trail. My buddy has the same bike and tells me to try "descend" whenever I go down, but I'm afraid I'll just forget to switch it back. I've been thinking about a CCDBA, but I'm a "set it and forget it guy."

I know 1x11 is the rage, but the 2x10 is fine with me (I'm coming from a 3x9). Even if the gear ratios are similar, I like to have that emergency switch when things get real steep and I can just drop it down a chainring rather rather than cycle up the cog to get to a lower gear. Haven't thrown a chain yet, maybe thanks to the Shimano clutch (didn't have that before either).

On the flats, feels the same as the Superlight except that Pike eats small bumps better. On high-speed turns, I can confidently lean and not worry about the front washing out--geometry? Longer wheelbase. I don't know if it's me, but the wider interior rims, just make the bike feel more stable, especially in slow technical/balance situations. Maintenance should be a snap, like my Superlight, and probably even easier now that SC uses the collet axle pivot lock stuff. And the 2x10 makes it easy to reach that pivot point.

Yes, I'm glowing about my new bike. If I had to bring up one issue, it's the wheelbase. The Heckler is longer than the old Superlight. I rear wheel hung halfway off my old Yamkima Steelhead roof rack. I'm a car guy and I hated the look of roof racks that don't require to you take off the front wheel, so I got a Yakima Forklift. That thing was so big and chunky up front, I could not tilt my sunroof. I had to exchange it for a SprocketRocket and pay return shipping to Jenson. Then I had to get a 15mm thru axle adapter. Yakima and Thule's are identical, right down to the patent number stamped in the metal but Thule charges $10 more. Unfortunately, neither lock and both are a pain to use. The RockyMounts drive shaft locks and is easier to use, but the freakin' thing swivels back and forth whenever I accelerate or brake. I've remedied the situation a little by using the other hole on the DriveShaft and using a cable lock in addition to the Yak wheel strap (still moves a little). But every time I want to use the DriveShaft, I have to unscrew the the Yak skewer, line it up with the DriveShaft and screw it in again. A bit of of a hassle.( I should write a review for the DriveShaft.)

So, back to the 2015 Heckler... awesome bike, awesome value. Hope my review did not bore you. Have fun!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Mr. Toads--Mission Trails, Parts of Nobel Canyon

Price Paid:    $3099.00

Purchased At:   Competitive Cyclist

Similar Products Used:   Santa Cruz Superlight
Nomad 26"

Bike Setup:   KS LEV
XT trail pedals

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Flip Saunders

Date Reviewed: September 13, 2014

Strengths:    This bike looks great and it's fun to ride. People say stuff like, nice Santa Cruz. I ride somewhat aggressive and I've been mountain biking about 15 years, this bike can easily handle anything I do. Great all around bike for climbing and descending. I got the black one.

Weaknesses:    I had to add a dropper post, of course, and the only other weakness is the pivot was making a creaking noise after a couple rides but I tightened it a little and it doesn't creak anymore. Also, it weighs about 32 pounds, with dropper post, pedals and everything, so it's not the lightest

Bottom Line:   
very fun bike to ride. I feel like I got the perfect bike for my riding style

Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

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Opinions on the 27.5 heckler?

Has anybody here owned or ridden one? I got a line on a frame in 27.5 wheel size and am interested in opinions. If this bike happens I think I am going to through the Answer/Manitou/Hayes/Sun Ringle catalog at it. Just like the single pivot, they are under appreciated products!Read More »

27.5 Heckler sizing

I am 5'10" and have always rode a med. frame. Building a Heckler, Med seems wee bit short but large wee bit big, what size has other people my height on Hecklers experienced?Read More »

Heckler 27.5'' with components of 26''

Hi, I have a problem... I have just broken my SC Heckler from 2009 and the technical service of SC from my country (Spain) offers me the option to buy the new version... of course with a santa cruz customer price. The SC factory can´t serve the piece I needed so I´m considering to adquire the new ve ... Read More »

27.5 Santa Cruz Heckler Reviewed

[url=]2014 Santa Cruz Heckler: Reviewed - Mountain Bike Reviews, News, Photo and Video[/url] Pretty good review but, I have one question for those that have owned a Heckler. Does it really climb as good as he says it does? Could this ... Read More »

Santa Cruz Heckler 27.5 announced...

Seems like SC is going all-in with 27.5. $1299 for frame and starts at $2600 for full build kit. Definitely more affordable than the Solo and Bronson. Can anyone explain to me what makes the Heckler 27.5 different from the other two? I am assuming that it mainly has to do with single pivot vs. VPP s ... Read More »

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