Santa Cruz Chameleon Frameset

Chameleon

User Reviews (74)

Showing 1-10 of 74  
surfzombo   Downhiller [Aug 18, 2008]
Strength:

Still a good strong frame after 11+ years.

Weakness:

none

I've been running this frame fer a long, long time (her frame No. is 328). She's a great workhorse, but loves being set free and pointed down hill. Matter of fact, and not to pat myself on the back, just yesterday the bike and I smoked some guy on an Ibis Mojo on the local downhill. I don't know how the newer Chameleon's ride. I hear they're made in Taiwan. (mine was made in the USA). RIDE ON!!!!!!!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
gager5000   Cross Country Rider [Aug 14, 2008]
Strength:

Sold ride, strong frame, looks gorgeous

Weakness:

No rear disc brake mount, paint.

I have this bike for 7 years now and I'm still not bored of it. It still gives me the same buzz now as when I first rode it. Granted, the paint works past its best but its seen off several groupsets, done many thousands of miles and I still get people talking to me about it on the trails. Its not the best XC bike in the world, or the best racer but it'll be very good at anything you try on it. Guess thats why the call it the do it all hardtail.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
wardo   Cross Country Rider [Jul 14, 2008]
Strength:

well i just picked this frame up from beside my local dumpster lol! what kind of idiot throws out a perfectly good frame! so i stripped it down no cracks or dents anywhere! i was pretty stoked from there on in! painted it white with a chameleon stenciled on it (it really looks sweet) and am now starting to build it up im going to love this bike its super light and looks strong!

Weakness:

i cant complain with a free frame!

i cant wait to ride it! im going to use it for my xc ripper and commuter because i allready have a stinky for everything else!

Similar Products Used: stinkys norco 4x
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
claudio   Weekend Warrior [Jun 20, 2003]
Strength:

Integrated disk mount
huge space for rear tyre
gusset bullit style

Weakness:

maybe i will find in time? I think not

Just finished building the day before yesterday.
I have only had the time to familiarise with it yesterday, so i cannot be very precise with my impressions.
Anyway first riding impression is great. Feels like the old one,that i liked a lot, maybe a bit more stable, the same light handling.
It has solved the problems of the old model, that are disk adaptor and poor space for rear tyre. It is also more beautiful than the old one.
I am only surprised that i could'nt find any advertising about the re-design of a bike like the chameleon.

Similar Products Used: cannondale sm500, kona chute, chameleon 99-2k
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
D-Money   Weekend Warrior [Aug 26, 2003]
Strength:

Light and strong, handles like a pi$$ed-off spider and stiff as a brick. Awesome bright apple-green color.

Weakness:

little room for the rear tire and gears, had to one-off the fitting for the disc brakes

Great little rig and a value to boot. Could have used more room for the rear gearset and tires, plus disc mounts, but I understand they fixed that with the new redesign. Bike does not rattle or shimmy when it takes my 220 pounds over drops and declines, very tight handling

Similar Products Used: some overpriced trek from a chain store
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
jumpy   Downhiller [May 22, 2003]
Strength:

Adaptable, calculated numbers, SS capability, stiff frame, very durable

Weakness:

why would anyone put their caliper mount where these gus did? No more dropout grinds.... although I still use it for JUST that!

Best HT urban bike to date that I've had. Even my stupid friends like it! I like my bullet and all, but little chameleon is the street king. Coming off a lil' bigger bike was wierd, but this bike does very well for itself. 6.5' to flat can be pulled out of yer A$# easily. the SS drivetrain is very specific, but eliminates DT skip and excess parts to kill off. does great stoppies, manuals, and stupid bike tricks. It runs rings around my bruiser, which I thought was the way to go until now. the smaller TT (21.5" med) helps w/ lifting the front a ton. It looks really dumb sitting next to my bullit but only because it's the same frickin color and I look like some team jerk. It bunnyhops WAY over wheel high w/out even barely trying. No downhill use intended, but I could build it that way if I wanted to. der.'s DO fit, but SS and urban are the combo right now. I had an ultegra derailleur on there, but it was crazy lound and hit the frame too much for me to want to keep the bike that way. then gears went bye-bye. Had a fox 125RLC on there, but that thing flaked out nice and quick, so a new zokey was ordered up-problem solved. I like this bike and will probably not part with it easily. If you ride urban, get hookworms! no more slippy slip on the urban front! One thing: pease please please get the caliper mount ABOVE harm's way! It comes up, ok santa cruz? these guys are known for bikes without issues, and this one's just like it's big brothers. True versatility....Makes for one siiiiiiiick stealth fighter.

Similar Products Used: DB reactor, bruiser, homegrown, my bullit
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
c t   Weekend Warrior [Mar 11, 2002]
Strength:

Best frame I have ever owned! Stable going downhill, corners very fast, nimble, easy to throw around. The way I have the bike set up it feels like a XC/BMX/Slalom/urban bike. Much more stable and confident going downhill than the dual suspension FSR XC I owned previously. Short and thick chainstays make the bike accelerate quick. Climbing is no problem even with a four inch fork. I have owned four bikes over the past 10 years and this is my favorite so far.

Weakness:

No rear disc break attachment. Although I don't plan on switching to disc brakes this bike could use them.

Highest recommendations if you want a do everything bike!!!

Similar Products Used: Rocky mountain reaper
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Gary   Cross Country Rider [Jan 14, 2004]
Strength:

Stiff, stiff, stiff. But very smooth. Corners like crazy. I can bury the front tire in turns, it holds tight and I can launch out of the corner without hesitation. That's what I love most about this bike, it is so much fun on the slalom and fast, rolling downhills. It's strong. I can't imagine breaking the frame. It doesn't flex a bit, no matter how high I jump.

Weakness:

It's stiff. My fatigue factor went way up with this bike. An hour and a half to two hours and I'm done (it's set up as a single speed - so I'm done anyway). There are no other weaknesses. It's geometry is perfect for me.

What a great SS frame. Mine is an '03 model, before the extra gussets at the headtube. Mine seems plenty strong, but a little extra beef can't hurt. I can ride the crap out of this thing with no worries. It has nice tight geometry. You can throw it around and it responds instantly. It would be questionable as a geared hardtail. I think the long rides might beat me up too much. It's great for a quick - go out and beat yourself to death and then have a beer - type of ride. I wouldn't race it. I race locally at the beginner/sport level and my Titus Riddler is far more well suited for the task. I will, however, keep it as my dedicated SS. No frame does everything perfect, but this thing is just damn fun to ride. But maybe I just like SS too much.

Similar Products Used: Specialized M2 Pro, Titus Riddler, a couple FS's
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Bruce Buck   [Feb 06, 2002]
Strength:

Stiff; FAST acceleration; STRONG; awesome geometry; VERY versatile; Handles great

Weakness:

Rear disc mount not very stiff. LOW resale value. Paint quality is questionable

THIS IS AN AWESOME HARDTAIL!!! I'm 5'6" and this is the only frame that I felt fit me PERFECTLY (MED.)!!! Great geometry. Even with a 5" fork it handled great. YES it IS stiff, but that pays off on a steep climb (great climber) and for urban riding (FAST, FAST acceleration). No sign of flex. If you want to take the edge off the bumps, run a 2.3 or 2.4 tire and run about 35psi. Burly enough for rocky downhill and urban drop-offs.

While the disc rotor adapter didn't seem to be very secure (bolted down tight enough), I NEVER had a problem with having rocks/twigs damage it. Horizontal dropouts held the wheel in place fine; no slippage. The shifting was PERFECT due to a thick, stiff derailleur hanger.

I'm going back to full suspension (Bullit), but if I were to get a hardtail again, it would HAVE to be a Chameleon!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Anders   Weekend Warrior [Jan 29, 2002]
Strength:

light, stiff, awesome warranty, good rear wheel clearance

Weakness:

horizontal dropout r annoying to get wheel out. also, sometimes the wheel slides back if i hit something hard. disk brake mount is scary looking - it hangs below chainstay.

besides from the little annoyances, its an awesome bike. i use it mainly for urban riding, but wanna try dh on it sometime. its only 4lbs so i can j-hop easily on it. wheelies great also. i havent had any problems with it yet(and hopefully never), but if/when something does happen, theres the lifetime manufacturers cost warranty on it.

Similar Products Used: GT zaskar and pantera
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 74  

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