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nerfherder
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I decided to try a Blur 4X as a trail ride. The build is mostly SCB's X9 AM build with a couple of swaps. It's not exactly how I want it but it's a great start. There was so little information about the 4X on this board or anywhere else for that matter. I felt that a lot of people have pidgeon holed this bike as a dedicated race bike. I figured it would be worth the time (and money?) to try one out since I think there's a lot of trail bike potential here.

The low BB height will definitely have me donking pedals but it'll also rail like... well, like a 4X bike. The geometry is slack even with a 4 inch fork which will make it more confidence inspiring on the DH. Pop up the travel to the full 140mm and it's totally raked out for even more downhill fun. It only weighs .05lbs more than the BLT (which I've owned in the past) so there isn't much of a weight penalty for the burly construction of the 4X.

Anyways, I think this is going to be a fun all around bike. I'll post back and let everyone know how the experiments going and if my suspicions are correct or if I'm a total moron. Pros and Cons, ride impressions, etc, coming soon.

For now, the build and some pr0n.

FRAME Medium Ano Slate Blur 4X
FORK 07 Fox 32 TALAS RLC
SHOCK 07 Fox RP23
REAR DER SRAM X9 medium cage
FRONT DER Shimano M760 (XT)
SHIFTERS 07 SRAM X9 triggers
CRANKSET TruVativ Stylo Team w/ Giga X Drive 22/32/44
CASSETTE SRAM PG 980, 11-34
CHAIN SRAM PC 971
BRAKES Hayes Mag XC
BRAKE LEVERS Hayes Mag XC
BARS Race Face Deus low riser
STEM Thomson Elite X4
GRIPS Lizard Skin lock on
HEADSET Cane Creek S3
SEAT POST Thompson Elite
SADDLE WTB Pure V Stealth
WHEELS WTB Laser Lite XC
TIRES WTB Weirwolf 2.55LT FR


Ano Slate sure is purdy. The fork's in the 100mm position.


Good clearance down here at the chainstays - these are 2.55 Weirwolf LTs.


Yikes, pretty tight up here at the little yoke that connects the seat stays. This is an 'issue' for the BLT, too. Only an issue if you ride mud, I suppose. Here in So Cal, not so much.


All raked out at 140mm.

Thoughts, questions, rants and raves are welcome. I hope you find this thread informative. First ride, tomorrow morning. Giddyup!
 

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Congrats !

Wow, that's realy nice rig You have here :thumbsup: . I'm SURE Your suspicions will be correct - as a matter of fact that's the only bike I'd like to have to fill up my VPF's FR/DH potential with some XC/all-around bike.
Few months ago there was an article in "Mountain Biking UK" about Blur4x as all mountain bike. The conclusion goes like this:

"From the moment I first rode the Blur 4X, I knew it was something special. It has the same stable feeling as a downhill bike, which encourages ballsy moves and allows you to pull off things you didn't think you could. I've been riding everything on it - BMX tracks, dirt jumps, downhill and XC singletrack. Whatever you do, it wants more. The geometry feels spot on for most riding, although you might grumble about the low BB height for XC riding - clouting the pedals on the ground can happen regularly in such situations. If you ride XC a lot you'd be better off going for a regular Blur.

This bike handles like a dream, though. It rails singletrack and it's long enough to cope with gnarly downhills but light enough to ride up hills without too much effort. It also loves to be treated to jumps and bumps yet it remains elegant and minimal.

The large size suits me (I'm 6ft 3in) for all-round thrashing; the medium will suit most riders, unless you have short legs. That said, a little birdie tells me there's a smaller frame with a dropped top tube in the pipeline…

MBUK verdict: A fantastic thrash rig that will do anything you ask it to… "

by MBUK

Have a good time on Your new B4x :)

serhij
 

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What is the BB height?

What is the BB height with your fork set at 140mm? If you have an angle finder it would also be interesting to know the seat and head angle with the fork set at 140mm.

Always wondered about the 4X as a trail bike. Anxious to hear your ride report. Curious to know how it pedals with the fork set at 140mm.

Nice bike!
 

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people think too much

have riden a 4x as a trailbike since march and came to the conclusions/results in the couple of posts above, with the only thing to be weary of is the BB height

this bike is fun and will be renewed with anothe 4x in a cuopla years

click on my username to see posts and pics of my bike.

just go ride it for gods sakes
 

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nerfherder
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1,674 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
First Ride!

Quick take after the morning's short prework ride:

Pedalling/Handling: @140mm - pedals great. Feels a bit slacked out but not floppy like a big bike might. It's still very snappy. Not surprisingly, feels nimble and ninja-like at 100mm.

Climbing: @100mm - felt fine. Not an XC rig but climbs on par with the BLT I used to have. For the heck of it I climbed some fireroad sections at 140mm and it wasn't a problem, either.

Pedal donks
: 2 (normally, none on my 6Pack). Once while climbing over a little hump and once while rolling a ledge.

Rocky steps
: Sweet. Feels confident like my old 6Pack (not as burly though). Slack geometry lets you roll down ugly stuff without much drama.

Tires: Weirwolf 2.55LT FRs - rolls fast, hook up better than expected considering how short the knobs are. Waaaaay faster than my previous tire combo (Kenda F/BG, R/Nev) but a tad less grippy.

Gripes: No water bottle mounts! =( Race Face handlebar is too low rise. Need a little more height and maybe a little more width. Standover is nil for my 30" inseam.

serhij: Hadn't seen the MBUK article. If that's on the internet somewhere I'd appreciate the link. Thanks for sharing that. Also didn't know about the potential for a small. I agree that it has potential to be a great all rounder.

rug wheelie: I climbed that fireroad at 140mm just for you. Felt fine. I'll see if I can get my hands on some protractors and doohickies to get the measurements you're looking for. I also need to get this thing weighed.

Gripo: Yeah, some people do think too much. Sort of can't blame them when it comes to $3-4K on a bike. So hopefully we can vicariously show people that this is a pretty sweet trail rig. I'll check out your ride/review... looking forward to it.
 

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Boyeeee
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Keep us posted on how this goes. I'm thinking of replacing my Blur "Classic" next year with a more "all around/trail/mountain/???" bike to go with my Uzzi VPX and SingleSpeed hardtail. I was initially thinking of a Nomad, but a Blur 4X sounds interesting.
 

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nerfherder
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1,674 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey, thanks serhij.

I like this line "The geometry also encourages idiotic riding. A low 12.6in bottom bracket height combined with a long wheelbase (44.25in with the fork set at 100mm travel) and slack head angle make the bike feel like a nimble miniature downhill rig."

No ride today, so no updates. Sorry.
 

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Got A Lust for Life...
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I figured the 4X would be a great trail bike. It has the same bb height as a rush(a 24h race bike) and shares a lot of geometry with it as well. I ride with a bunch of rush riders in rocky, rooty sections and they don't have too much a problem with banging pedals. I have been thinking about one for awhile now because of the geometry and VPP. Now if I can only stop hating(and loving) on SC long enough! :)
 

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Looks Nice :)

The low BB height seems like a real worry though. My Heckler (RIP) would hit things left right and center with the fork at @ 100mm; I would hate to think what the 4X would ride like here. The Tyre clearance is far too close for Scottish conditions too. ;)
 

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Ariolimax columbianus
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1,641 Posts
My 4x trailbike experiment lead me to the conclusion that I wanted more travel so I bought a Nomad. The 4x/Pike combo was great, but the handling in tight singletrack was slow. On steeper, rockier downs the rear felt pingy, and wasn't enough travel. Also the BB is low and I did hit on obstacles from time to time, I was running 170mm cranks too. I was gonna keep the 4x for a thrasher/dj/pump track frame but chose my hardtail over it because the hardtail was more practical (someone got a sick deal on Ebay). Even though the 4x offers the VPPlushness, I thought the Heckler I owned before the 4x was a better all around trailbike.
 

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nerfherder
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1,674 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
indy - the Rush comparison helped push me over the edge on making the call for this bike.

weescott - I might have to install some more traditional looking tires to see if the tire clearance is a problem then or if it's just the Weirwolf LTs. But yeah fortunately we don't have much mud in Souther California.

nativeson - yeah, coming off of a 6 inch bike the rear end is definitely not as plush. I'm captain obvious, but it's true. People love their Hecklers. Never ridden one so can't compare. Maybe that'll be my next bike. :thumbsup:

Next ride after work today and more thoughts tonight.
 

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nerfherder
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Guestimations...

rug wheelie said:
What is the BB height with your fork set at 140mm? If you have an angle finder it would also be interesting to know the seat and head angle with the fork set at 140mm.

Always wondered about the 4X as a trail bike. Anxious to hear your ride report. Curious to know how it pedals with the fork set at 140mm.

Nice bike!
Okay, no scientific studies done here. I'm guessing at the HA. The B4X's stated HA is 68.5 with a 472mm AC fork. I've heard the 07 TALAS quoted at 510mm extended at 140mm. So if it's as simple as subtracting 40mm then when in the 100mm settnig the AC is 470 and the HA should be around 68.5.

40mm is 1.57 inches so going with the general rule of 1 inch = 1 degree slacker then at 140mm one would presume that the HA is 67 degrees. Pretty raked out. But it doesn't feel terribly slow. Someone correct me if my math is wrong. I'm horrendous at math.

BB height, if measured from floor to center of the BB, is ~13inches. .4inches higher than the specs but that could be my balloon tires (measured with fork at 100mm).
 

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Got A Lust for Life...
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Really?

nativeson said:
My 4x trailbike experiment lead me to the conclusion that I wanted more travel so I bought a Nomad. The 4x/Pike combo was great, but the handling in tight singletrack was slow. On steeper, rockier downs the rear felt pingy, and wasn't enough travel. Also the BB is low and I did hit on obstacles from time to time, I was running 170mm cranks too. I was gonna keep the 4x for a thrasher/dj/pump track frame but chose my hardtail over it because the hardtail was more practical (someone got a sick deal on Ebay). Even though the 4x offers the VPPlushness, I thought the Heckler I owned before the 4x was a better all around trailbike.
I am thinking about making the jump from heckler to 4x myself for the vpp. Where do you ride?
 

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nerfherder
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Rode after work today with some of my work buddies. Start with a short grind of a climb to a long grind of a fireroad climb and then back down through some rock gardens. For you SoCal folks: Aliso Woods @ Canyon Vistas to Cholla to Top of the World back to Rock-It to Coyote and out to Canyon Vistas. ~1.5 hours.

Actually didn't pedal strike at all today. Not sure if it's because I just rode with it in mind or if it's just a non issue for these particular trails.

Climbing
Bike climbs as well as my BLT did. Better than my previous ride, too (6 Pack). With the RP23 on ProPedal 3 (the firmest setting) the rear end is too stiff and pinging all over the place. Tomorrow I'll try it on 2. On the flats I actually turned it off to get more traction 'cause I felt like my rear wheel wasn't on the ground through the rough. But I climbed with it on and mashed all over the place with little or no drama.

Descending
Since it's the second ride I'm still getting used to it and with the Weirwolf LTs I'm a little apprehensive about laying it over for some turns. Okay, I suck at cornering anyways. Picked bad lines all day. But going straight down is awesome. For a little bike this thing's pretty darn stable at speed. Longish wheelbase I guess.

Anyways, no pics. Sorry. I'll probably ride in the morning and take some then.

But this bike sure does feel like a good mix of climbing, descending, turning, and flickable fun all at a descent trail bike weight. Where's the compromise? I guess it's the low BB. Let's see if I don't break my trusty 8 year old ATACs soon. And I want to mount a water bottle darn it!
 

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Keep it coming man. Interestingly enough, I love railing corners. I wasn't worried about that aspect of the frame because the damn thing was made for it. I was however, worried about all the other aspects you just mentioned. Easing my mind you are... I am up in Maine though with super tight singletrack with tight corners everywhere. I am curious as to a)how it will behave in this environment and b) how the pivots will hold up. I am really interested in your perspective. Let me know how it is in the tight stuff. The dude above said it was a bit slow...but I am running about a 68 degree on my heckler. It can't get much slower than that!
 
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