from rapid city, S.D. usa
Date Reviewed: June 15, 2005
Strengths: strong(and by strong i mean indestructible), stiff, light(for price)
Weaknesses: stiff(might go carbon seat post, or suspension), beefy tires stick on brakes when pulling off wheels, no disc mount
Buy this frame. the 2003 looks so good and i love this bike so much, i bought a xcl for my girl, and another frame, might be too small, but if i can score another one in my size, i'll get it. all hardtails in my stable will be access. what does that tell ya? oh, and ya might want a good suspension seatpost, she gets a thudbuster, but a carbon post will probably do the trick if you like a true hardtail.
Similar Products Used: gary fisher(old and too big), nashbar aluminum, trek 6000
Bike Setup: exr(from p.2),lx/xt rear, rhyno lites, semi slickDH tires, avid mags, carbon bars(go carbon w/ this frame and definitely w/ exr. most carbon bars on sale now)
Date Reviewed: June 1, 2000
Strengths: Cheap, strong, stiff (particularly the rear end), light (14" is ~3.8 pounds), lots of tire clearance.
Weaknesses: no disk brake mount 30.4 seat post is uncommon but I found that the more common 30.2 also works. cheesy paint (but not complaining much for this price)
I realize that most people who buy this frame are XC riders but when I first saw this frame in the 14" size all I could think of was DUAL SLALOM. It has a huge gusseted downtube, reinforced headtube, square chain and seat stays, machined chainstay yoke, S bent seatstays (perfect for Magura brakes), and room for seriously fat tires. I use Tioga 2.3" DH tires and there's lots more room. It just screams slalom and looks beefier than many purpose-built slalom frame. And it's light, under 4 pounds in the 14". The geometry is slalom friendly too with a 4" fork. It's extremely stiff, especially that rear end, when landing big jumps. Total bike weight with all the heavy DH/DS parts is 29 pounds
All this for a ridiculously low price. Bontrager once said about the bike industry, "strong, light, cheap; pick two". Well, this frame may be the first example of being able to get all three. However, for this price, corners had to be cut. There's no disk brake mount so the Maguras are the strongest brakes you can use. The welds are adequate, not sloppy but they'll never be admired for their looks. Same goes for the paint.
Bottom line: extremely functional, but won't win any beauty contests.
Similar Products Used: Klein Trek 7000 Fisher GT, etc.
Bike Setup: '99 LX/XT Sun CR 18 Manitou SX
a Cross-Country Rider
Date Reviewed: October 4, 1999
Strengths: As inexpensive as they come. On par with many frames costing 3X as much. Fit, finish, stength all appear good. Weight is respectable.
Weaknesses: The decals are under clearcoat and hard to get off (i.e., the stigma of having a bike branded by Supergo)
I've only had this frame a couple weeks, so these are only first impressions, but the frame's been more than satisfactory so far. Good power transfer but still a nice, comfortable ride. Appearance is good, with welds and everything on target. Looks strong, and weight is respectable. Wish I could get the decals off easily so it looked like what it really is -- a no nonsense, generic aluminum hardtail. The bottom line? This frame seems as good as many costing three times as much. Assuming it holds up, there's just no reason to spend a lot of money on other Taiwan mass produced frames. This has the extruded chainstay bracket, s-bend stays, gussets, etc. Is it as nice as the Klein I used to have? No way, especially if the intent is to race. But for a trail bike, this seems to be the equal (or better) of many a Trek, Specialized, GT, etc. There's just no reason to pay more when you can get just as good for $199, complete with seatpost etc.