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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking to gather opinions on what you guys think a worthy 4" full-suspension frame is for XC racing and general riding/training.

I do have some guidelines:

* No proprietary forks or front hub arrangements - I have a nice set of XTR wheels and a SID WC that I'm not willing to give up.

* I'm not sold on VPP. I had a Spider and really disliked it - too many creaks, and durability issues.

* Weight is obviously an issue. I have lightweight parts but I don't want to start with a 6.5lb frame. I'd like the total bike to hover around 22~23lbs with a full XTR kit, carbon bits for the cockpit and the aforementioned SID.

* Funds are not unlimited, so "unobtainium" frames are out. I'd like to keep the frame under $1K.

* Dimensions that I'm shooting for are: 18~19" seat tube, 23.5" top tube, 70~70.5 degree head angle and a 73~73.5 degree seat angle. BB height around 12.5"

You suggestions / opinions are appreciated!
 

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offroader
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the prices are ebay aproximations~

Scott Spark 4.3" $1200~

Titus Race X 4" $800-900~

Specialized Epic 4" $600-700~

Titus Motolite has 4-5" adjustable $800-900~

The Yeti is nice, but I've been looking at the prices on ebay, $1400~

The Jet9 probably won't fit the Sid fork the OP is trying to install on the new bike.

Other possible choices that were ruled out:
Cannondale - proprietary headset
Santa - VPP Link
Turner - DW-Link
Giant - Maestro Link/weight
GT - I-Drive Link/weight
Intense - VPP Link
Pivot - Price/weight
Trek/GF - Trek...
 

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What's "social pace?"
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skunkwerkscycles said:
Funds are not unlimited, so "unobtainium" frames are out. I'd like to keep the frame under $1K.
This is where you will have the difficulty. For sub-$1k, I'd do a hardtail. That kinda money won't buy you a carbon 4" frame like the aforementioned ASR-C.
 

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More carbon fiber please!
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skunkwerkscycles said:
I'm looking to gather opinions on what you guys think a worthy 4" full-suspension frame is for XC racing and general riding/training.

I do have some guidelines:

* No proprietary forks or front hub arrangements - I have a nice set of XTR wheels and a SID WC that I'm not willing to give up.

* I'm not sold on VPP. I had a Spider and really disliked it - too many creaks, and durability issues.

* Weight is obviously an issue. I have lightweight parts but I don't want to start with a 6.5lb frame. I'd like the total bike to hover around 22~23lbs with a full XTR kit, carbon bits for the cockpit and the aforementioned SID.

* Funds are not unlimited, so "unobtainium" frames are out. I'd like to keep the frame under $1K.

* Dimensions that I'm shooting for are: 18~19" seat tube, 23.5" top tube, 70~70.5 degree head angle and a 73~73.5 degree seat angle. BB height around 12.5"

You suggestions / opinions are appreciated!
For a fast XC bike with just under 4" out back and a 100mm fork up front... the NRS works wonders. Of course it would depend on where you ride whether or not the NRS suspension is for you. There would be not much of a challenge to get to the 22-23 lb weight area. I've seen some of the carbon NRS frames on eBay for around $750-800-ish (new) including the rear Fox Float R shock. You can sell the shock and go to a lighter Cloud 9 or something else and still meet your $1K limit for a frame. I kind of pushed the envelope and have one that's 20.83 pounds even with less than the lightest pedals, hubs, crankset, etc.

Edit... here's a used one that went for $377:
http://cgi.ebay.com/2005-Giant-NRS-Carbon-Fiber-frame-No-Reserve_W0QQitemZ180309613091QQcmdZViewItem
 

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Well its not the latest and greatest but I'm really loving my santa cruz superlight. Nice and simple with great handling and I don't notice the suspension bobbing when I climb but it definately soaks up the bumps and I'm downhilling better than ever.
They can be had quite cheaply used, there was a nice looking frame for 380$ in the classified section. I paid around that for mine and it was like new.
Its been very durable, lts of hard riding, unexpected crashing ini big rock areas etc. No dings nothing.
 

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+1 for the RM Element

rockyuphill said:
These are a popular XC race bike in this part of the world. A healthy portion of the racers in the Test of Metal are on Elements of one variety or another. They are simple and easy to maintain and work pretty well in race conditions.
Great bike and the cost is right in line.
 

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I have to chime in with Turner Nitrous as there's one for sale (not by me or by a friend of mine) for under 600 in large. 4.5lbs. Weight limit though. Doh.

I have one too not that means a damn thing.
 

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CupOfJava said:
the prices are ebay aproximations~
Scott Spark 4.3" $1200~
Titus Race X 4" $800-900~
Specialized Epic 4" $600-700~
Titus Motolite has 4-5" adjustable $800-900~
The Yeti is nice, but I've been looking at the prices on ebay, $1400~
The Jet9 probably won't fit the Sid fork the OP is trying to install on the new bike.
Other possible choices that were ruled out:
Cannondale - proprietary headset
Santa - VPP Link
Turner - DW-Link
Giant - Maestro Link/weight
GT - I-Drive Link/weight
Intense - VPP Link
Pivot - Price/weight
Trek/GF - Trek...
So you're ruling out the DW-Link Turner because of the DW-Link? that's as absurd as leaving in the Jet9 which has a virtual link rear. If anything, exclude it due to weight/cost.

Of the above, I'd do a Titus Racer X or a Cannondale Scalpel, which will run your SID with a cheap reducing headset. The low end Scalpels actually come with SID's for 09.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow.

Wow guys - thanks for all of the suggestions.

The Rocky Mountain was one I overlooked completely and it's a great suggestion. Also the NRS isn't a bad one either.

The Jet 9 isn't and option - can't use my exsisting parts on it.

I'll have to read up on the MSC - I have no knowledge of that one.....
 

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rockyuphill said:
Here's the starting line of the Test of Metal. 7 Elements in the front. :thumbsup:
Looks like most of those are sponsored by Rocky heh...

The Element is probably a good choice but I'd be leary of getting a used one from the last few years. For 2009 they beefed up the area on the chainstays right near the BB pivot, as the frames were breaking there. A couple people on my team had issues with theirs (mostly 2007 and 2008 models I think).
 

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ups and downs
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Just the fast guys at the front. :D Apparently there were 225 entries in the ToM riding Vertex, Elements or ETSX's.

There were issues with the 07/08 chainstays/swingarms cracking, the mechanic from my LBS was replacing some during the BC Bike Race. I'd agree on the caution on the used bikes, especially the used race bikes, unless they've had the swingarm replaced with the beefed up version. For a race bike you'd really want a warranty - just in case. :thumbsup:
 
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