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I throw poo
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have decided that I'm tired of being an outcast, and I'm thinking of getting a bike that people have heard of, ridden, know about. I kind of like what I've seen on the SC forum, no vicious acrimony like the Turner/Ellsworth forums, and they seem to be good bikes.

My real questions are: Is the VPP realy worth $500 more than the SP? Are the BLT and Heckler comparable? Is there any way for me to justify buying a new bike to the S.O.?
 

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Heckler is the way to go

Hey,

I have owned two Hecklers and I believe they are the way to go. Don't get me wrong, the VPP is a great technology, but if your budget is in mind the Heckler is the choice. The first one I had decked out as a freeride machine and it could take 6'+ drops easily without a groan. The second one I have built up for XC, its got a Swinger 3-way Air on the back, Fox 130 up front and XC equipment everywhere else. Its at just over 28 lbs for a large frame. The SP design with the right shock, Swinger 3-way, Fifth element, DHX Air will make a pedalling platform nearly as good at the VPP, and with alot less bearings to go bad.

If you want any more info/pics/build advice, PM me.

JCH
 

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I throw poo
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
bump

Just one answer! Hasn't anyone ridden both bikes? I appriciate the response I got from JCHkeys, but I knew that people think the Heckler is a great bike. I was really hoping for some comparison between the two.
 

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Bicyclochondriac.
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lovemonkey said:
Just one answer! Hasn't anyone ridden both bikes? I appriciate the response I got from JCHkeys, but I knew that people think the Heckler is a great bike. I was really hoping for some comparison between the two.
If somebody has something to say, they will say it. Bumping is rude, and if everyone did it the board would be a mess. I understand your desire for more info, as I have been watching this thread closely myself. I too am curoius what people think.

Sure a bunch of us love the Heckler, but if we don't have some real time on a BLT then we really don't have much to say outside of conjecture. My conjecture would be that the BLT probably performs better in most "trail" circumstances, but in the end I am sure the Heckler is a stronger frame and is more suited for drops and stunts.
 

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Blur vs. Heckler

I rode the Blur (regular non LT version) for a couple of months but just bought the Heckler for the following reasons: price (in my neck of the woods the difference was $750), simplicity (as I would like spend as little tiime as possible on maintanance), and with properly tuned stable platform shock I am happy enough with the SP performance as not to invest in the VPP frame. The Blur rides great however, I do think the Heckler is probably more versatile: can be dressed from almost XC to almost FR.
 

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HENRI8 said:
I rode the Blur (regular non LT version) for a couple of months but just bought the Heckler for the following reasons: price (in my neck of the woods the difference was $750), simplicity (as I would like spend as little tiime as possible on maintanance), and with properly tuned stable platform shock I am happy enough with the SP performance as not to invest in the VPP frame. The Blur rides great however, I do think the Heckler is probably more versatile: can be dressed from almost XC to almost FR.
good call. I recently got a Heckler as well after considering VP and HL offerings from a few different cos. In the end, Id say the Heckler will serve you right. Think of it this way, when you have a bike that has stood the test of time and technology and continues to get rave reviews and sell well amongst its rivals (VP included), its got to be that good! If it ain't broke....Go for the Heckler and have a ball!
 

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lovemonkey said:
Just one answer! Hasn't anyone ridden both bikes? I appriciate the response I got from JCHkeys, but I knew that people think the Heckler is a great bike. I was really hoping for some comparison between the two.
I have spent some time on both durning the last few days.I have had 2 hecklers in the last 3 years (02 model and now 05) as my primary rig ( had others come and go but allways fall back on it) I ride everything from XC to light FR to DH shuttle runs to 24hour events. Im a expert class DH, and sport in XC and trials.Now the bikes: Very simular. But different:) The heckler has the 5th coil and rides firmer with zero bob when climbing. The BLT Bobed alittle even in the propedal setting but no more than my Truth ( ellsworth) . BLT you could sprint were the Heck would mush. The Heckler is bottomless, maybe twice has it felt bottomout in 3 years and then is wasnt bad. Even when I ran more air on the BLTs RP3 I could run it through its travel. Never had a chance to go bigger than 3 foot to flat ( even though I was trying hard to bottom it) I felt It didnt want alot more. Heckler was beggin for more. I felt they both could take a beating. BLT "Way plusher" takes all the small bumps out of the picture. Almost feel like a flat tire in the rear ( in a good way). Cockpit felt very simular. BLT a bit longer ( liked it) but hardly noticable. Couldnt notice the .5 deg head angle steepness in the BLT. They had the same length forks ( FOX 5") If you could get the BLT to resist bottom out or the heckler to be that plush and effecient ( and build it in the USA) you would have one hell of a bike. They both are great. I think your riding style could make the call. $500 difference worth it? Maybe maybe not.If you have any questions go for it and I will test it out. I have had a friends for a while and still testing it out.
 

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Your wiches

m-dub said:
I have spent some time on both durning the last few days.I have had 2 hecklers in the last 3 years (02 model and now 05) as my primary rig ( had others come and go but allways fall back on it) I ride everything from XC to light FR to DH shuttle runs to 24hour events. Im a expert class DH, and sport in XC and trials.Now the bikes: Very simular. But different:) The heckler has the 5th coil and rides firmer with zero bob when climbing. The BLT Bobed alittle even in the propedal setting but no more than my Truth ( ellsworth) . BLT you could sprint were the Heck would mush. The Heckler is bottomless, maybe twice has it felt bottomout in 3 years and then is wasnt bad. Even when I ran more air on the BLTs RP3 I could run it through its travel. Never had a chance to go bigger than 3 foot to flat ( even though I was trying hard to bottom it) I felt It didnt want alot more. Heckler was beggin for more. I felt they both could take a beating. BLT "Way plusher" takes all the small bumps out of the picture. Almost feel like a flat tire in the rear ( in a good way). Cockpit felt very simular. BLT a bit longer ( liked it) but hardly noticable. Couldnt notice the .5 deg head angle steepness in the BLT. They had the same length forks ( FOX 5") If you could get the BLT to resist bottom out or the heckler to be that plush and effecient ( and build it in the USA) you would have one hell of a bike. They both are great. I think your riding style could make the call. $500 difference worth it? Maybe maybe not.If you have any questions go for it and I will test it out. I have had a friends for a while and still testing it out.
LOVEMONKEY this is a great answer for you,I also ride an BLT and this is all true, but M-DUB if you trade the RP3 for the DHX AIR the BLT will resist the bottom out!
Fundamentally the BLT is a pure trail bike and the Heckler more a light freeride!
 

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I throw poo
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Perfect

Thanks m-dub, that tells me exactly what I wanted to know. It also tells me what bike I want to get. I never need to go more than 3ft to flat, more of bashing through rock gardens at speed. Small bump compliance and sprinting I could use, so BLT it is. Of course I will try to test ride both at some point, but I think that you got it covered for me.
 

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I throw poo
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Although, I still don't know how to talk my signifigant other in to letting me buy it.
 

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lovemonkey said:
Thanks m-dub, that tells me exactly what I wanted to know. It also tells me what bike I want to get. I never need to go more than 3ft to flat, more of bashing through rock gardens at speed. Small bump compliance and sprinting I could use, so BLT it is. Of course I will try to test ride both at some point, but I think that you got it covered for me.
Ya for trail bike performance you cant go wrong with the BLT. I think alot of people out there should be on this instead of the Nomad. If your honest with how you truly ride and not how you want other people to think you ride or what the Mags tell you you should be on, alot of people would be on different rigs:) As far as the wifes approval deal, mine is fine with it as long as I upgrade hers at the same time. So I have to be carful with my new purchases because it cost me twich as much:)
 

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Surfas said:
LOVEMONKEY this is a great answer for you,I also ride an BLT and this is all true, but M-DUB if you trade the RP3 for the DHX AIR the BLT will resist the bottom out!
Fundamentally the BLT is a pure trail bike and the Heckler more a light freeride!
Does the RP3 have the same propedal feture or is it more platform?The RP3 did its job with a flick of the lever. I would hate to loose that feature but it would be a hard choice because the bottomout adjust of the DHX might make the bike( if it didnt loose its pedal efficiency)
 

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I agree.

m-dub said:
Ya for trail bike performance you cant go wrong with the BLT. I think alot of people out there should be on this instead of the Nomad. If your honest with how you truley ride and not how you want other people to think you ride or what the Mags tell you you should be on, alot of people whould be on different rigs:) As far as the wifes approval deal, mine is fine with it as long as I upgrade hers at the same time. So I have to be carful with my new purchases because it cost me twich as much:)
I also feel that many people get more bike than what they need. More travel is the "in" thing right now and 6" or more, is the magic number. Five inches of travel is more than enough for almost any application, including light freeriding. The Heckler is the perfect example. Less than six inches of travel but it can do damn near anything. The travel on the 5th elment coil that I had on my Heckler felt like it had more than 6" easily.

The magazines are now telling us that bikes like the Nomad with 6.5" of travel are the bikes to have if you can only have "one" bike. Five inches of travel used to be the magic number, and the Heckler used to be the bike to have if you could only have one bike. Now anything less than 6" is just not enough for some reason.

The BLT looks plenty sturdy for all kinds of riding and I am sure it can handle a drop or two to tranny in the 4-5ft range without buckling. A huck under six feet doesn't sound like much, but the vast majority of trail riders never go any bigger than a few feet. Although they think they can and might someday, and that is when bikes like the Nomad become attractive. The simple fact is that they probably won't and a smaller bike like the BLT or Heckler is all most riders will ever need.
 

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noMAD man
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Baloney, Ronny!

ronny said:
I also feel that many people get more bike than what they need. More travel is the "in" thing right now and 6" or more, is the magic number. Five inches of travel is more than enough for almost any application, including light freeriding. The Heckler is the perfect example. Less than six inches of travel but it can do damn near anything. The travel on the 5th elment coil that I had on my Heckler felt like it had more than 6" easily.

The magazines are now telling us that bikes like the Nomad with 6.5" of travel are the bikes to have if you can only have "one" bike. Five inches of travel used to be the magic number, and the Heckler used to be the bike to have if you could only have one bike. Now anything less than 6" is just not enough for some reason.

The BLT looks plenty sturdy for all kinds of riding and I am sure it can handle a drop or two to tranny in the 4-5ft range without buckling. A huck under six feet doesn't sound like much, but the vast majority of trail riders never go any bigger than a few feet. Although they think they can and might someday, and that is when bikes like the Nomad become attractive. The simple fact is that they probably won't and a smaller bike like the BLT or Heckler is all most riders will ever need.
Us 54 year old, hardcore freeriders need all the travel we can get! Just look at the air under my tires in this humongous jump. :D Funny thing, today we had a veritable SC funfest out at our local trail...Bullit, Heckler, and BLT were represented...no Nomad yet, unfortunately. For a small jump like this one pictured, you're right...the BLT is more than sufficient. However, along the trail and in the parking lot there are numerous jumps and drops of similar type, and if you take all of these as you ride, it's nice having the heavier built bike like a Nomad or Bullit. I ride this trail at least 4-5 times a week, about 11 miles long. I think over a period of time perhaps the Nomad would be a better choice just because of a little more durability. I think you're right in suggesting that riders should consider very frankly how much or how many times their bikes are in the air to make an honest decision on how much bike they need. I definitely looked hard at the BLT when making my Nomad decision.

Plus, Ronny, you have to remember that us older guys don't see as well as we used to, so when I run into stuff accidently on the trail, that extra Nomad travel will save a trip to the nursing home. :D
 

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You need at least 6.5" for your old ass! Sometimes I think I do also. After a couple of knee surgeries and a sore back, the extra cushion might be the ticket. I have not warmed up to the looks of the Nomad yet, but I am itching to test ride one. I wish I could ride all year long also. Lucky, lucky.

You are right that if you are hitting numerous jumps, even if they are not big, and riding rough terrain, the repeated pounding can wear lighter bikes down and the Nomad is a good bike to consider in this case. It is also a preference thing. If someone wants to have a bike with 6 or 7" of travel, then giver. I used to have a 7" travel bike and did more xc with it than freeriding. I was just implying that most riders, even though they think they do, don't need a super burly long travel bike.

Another thing I didn't mention is rider weight. I am porking out at around 220lbs right now after feasting and drinking for the last couple of weeks, and I don't trust lighter weight frames for my riding style and weight. Even if I don't hit a 4-6 footer that often, I need something strong enough to withstand the landing when I do. I also like the insurance factor that a burly frame can bail me out of trouble sometimes. Like you said, extra travel can bail someone out once in a while also.

I am looking forward to a review of the Nomad when you get it out for a good ride.

Have a happy new year.
 

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noMAD man
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On the Heckler note...

ronny said:
You need at least 6.5" for your old ass! Sometimes I think I do also. After a couple of knee surgeries and a sore back, the extra cushion might be the ticket. I have not warmed up to the looks of the Nomad yet, but I am itching to test ride one. I wish I could ride all year long also. Lucky, lucky.

You are right that if you are hitting numerous jumps, even if they are not big, and riding rough terrain, the repeated pounding can wear lighter bikes down and the Nomad is a good bike to consider in this case. It is also a preference thing. If someone wants to have a bike with 6 or 7" of travel, then giver. I used to have a 7" travel bike and did more xc with it than freeriding. I was just implying that most riders, even though they think they do, don't need a super burly long travel bike.

Another thing I didn't mention is rider weight. I am porking out at around 220lbs right now after feasting and drinking for the last couple of weeks, and I don't trust lighter weight frames for my riding style and weight. Even if I don't hit a 4-6 footer that often, I need something strong enough to withstand the landing when I do. I also like the insurance factor that a burly frame can bail me out of trouble sometimes. Like you said, extra travel can bail someone out once in a while also.

I am looking forward to a review of the Nomad when you get it out for a good ride.

Have a happy new year.
The guy in this pic, also from today, wrings out his Heckler unmercifully all the time. He's worn out two rear shocks and a fork. He's 46, so he should be the one worn out. :D In this pic he has my 6" Flick+ on it while his 5" fork is being rebuilt. I think it corrupted him in that he likes what it did for his Heckler's performance. That's all we needed...for him to be a better rider. :rolleyes:
 

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re

My friend sorry to tell you this but I can do this with my superlite and she don't even feel it!!

:D
TNC said:
Us 54 year old, hardcore freeriders need all the travel we can get! Just look at the air under my tires in this humongous jump. :D Funny thing, today we had a veritable SC funfest out at our local trail...Bullit, Heckler, and BLT were represented...no Nomad yet, unfortunately. For a small jump like this one pictured, you're right...the BLT is more than sufficient. However, along the trail and in the parking lot there are numerous jumps and drops of similar type, and if you take all of these as you ride, it's nice having the heavier built bike like a Nomad or Bullit. I ride this trail at least 4-5 times a week, about 11 miles long. I think over a period of time perhaps the Nomad would be a better choice just because of a little more durability. I think you're right in suggesting that riders should consider very frankly how much or how many times their bikes are in the air to make an honest decision on how much bike they need. I definitely looked hard at the BLT when making my Nomad decision.

Plus, Ronny, you have to remember that us older guys don't see as well as we used to, so when I run into stuff accidently on the trail, that extra Nomad travel will save a trip to the nursing home. :D
 
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