Santa Cruz Chameleon HT 29er Hardtail

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  • Interchangeable dropouts for gears (with 148mm x 12mm axle) or single speed (with 142mm x 12mm axle)
  • Stealth dropper post routing
  • Threaded Bottom Bracket
  • Two bottle cage mounts


  Available Models:

  • Chameleon D+
  • Chameleon R1


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[May 26, 2018]


Light and stiff, with a fun/lively feel. It is a great trail bike for the HT crowd. Replaceable drop outs make it a solid option for riders who like to mix things up but don't want to pay for multiple bikes. It cilmbs very well, and descends like a fiend. I am not a big jumper, but it easily takes 3-4' drops to flat without concern. I moved over a bunch of high end parts, but the R build is a solid spec and seemed to be a proper (though low end) build for real mtn biking. With the parts I moved from my Pivot 429T, I have no issues running this bike hard and in any conditions. I am sure it will suffer at the bike park this summer, afterall, it is a hard tail, but on my local trails I actually enjoy the ride more than my 429t. Carbon squishy bikes feel a bit numb, and while the Chameleon's Alu frame is not as "comfortable", it is also nut buzzy like an old school Alu frame. The ability to run up to a 27.5x3.0 front and rear is nice, and I am actually on a 27.5x2.8 Maxxis Rekon (35mm IW) on the rear, and a Minion DHF 29x2.5 (30mm IW?) on the front. With the stock 3.0 tires, It could climb anything, but felt a bit slow on descents. With the new set up, climbing should still be amazing, but it has the playful feel back on the front end. Adjustable drop outs make it ideal for single speed, and are the reason I looked at it in the first place.


The seat post was slipping with aluminum and no friction paste. Rear drop out lost a nut and shifted during a ride. Seems like they are not getting torqued completely or loctited properly during build. Post is now carbon with friction paste and I torqued the new dropouts down with loc tite. No issues with anything now.

Price Paid:
2500 plus upgrades
Model Year:




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