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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can anyone share what their experiences have been with the climbing efficiencies of the Trail Pistol vs other bikes? I am assuming the TP has a Horst suspension linkage design?

Curious how the climbing stacks up to other bikes and other suspension designs (Switch Infinity, VPP, DW-link etc)
 

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Curious how the climbing stacks up to other bikes and other suspension designs (Switch Infinity, VPP, DW-link etc)
I'm on a Smash [Plush more with a coil] so at least in theory the least efficient setup for this bike. I've owned similar capability VPP and DW-Link bikes and the Smash is a better climber than they were. I don't touch the climb switch and ride the shock wide open all the time. It's very supportive with minimal shock movement yet loads of traction for our steep traction challenged Coastal BC tech.

I can only imagine the TP would be even better.

I love to climb fast and clean tech sections so if the GG bikes were not great climbers I would have sold mine and moved on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm on a Smash [Plush more with a coil] so at least in theory the least efficient setup for this bike. I've owned similar capability VPP and DW-Link bikes and the Smash is a better climber than they were. I don't touch the climb switch and ride the shock wide open all the time. It's very supportive with minimal shock movement yet loads of traction for our steep traction challenged Coastal BC tech.

I can only imagine the TP would be even better.

I love to climb fast and clean tech sections so if the GG bikes were not great climbers I would have sold mine and moved on.
Out of curiousity, which VPP / DW-Link models did you own? I had a Mach 429 SL which was a pretty quick climber.
 

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Out of curiousity, which VPP / DW-Link models did you own? I had a Mach 429 SL which was a pretty quick climber.
Nomad and Mach 6. They are in the same capability range as the Smash the way I have it built [heavy duty]. The Mach 6 was ~6lbs lighter with especially light wheels. The Nomad was in the same weight range, but with custom air suspension.

Based on my experience with the Smash vs. the Mach 6 I'd bet the TP climbs as well as the 429 with the same build.

I was somewhat concerned when I ordered my Smash [sight unseen] about how the climbing would be. I don't ride park or shuttle and I love climbing so I need a bike that is excellent up and down. I figured I'd try the Smash and worst case sell it after the summer.

The GG climbing prowess has blown me away and again that's in Plush mode with a coil shock run wide open and never touching the climb switch. I used the climb switch on my Mach 6 DWLink more than I do on the Smash. I'll readily admit on paper when you look at the bikes that makes no sense. But, that's the reality. I'm surprised, but also stoked. :)
 

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My Trail Pistol climbs much better than I can.

I demoed SC, Trek, Spot, Mondraker, Yeti, YT, Ibis, Pivots, Specialized, Scott and I'm sure I've forget some. The SC, Yeti and Specialized sucked climbing but rocked the downhill. Ibis, Scott, Pivot and YT were better uphill but still only so-so. the Trek Fuel, Spot, Mondraker Foxxy and GG Trail Pistol all killed it uphill. The Trek Fuel and Spot lost out a little on the decent. Full disclosure: I'm 140lbs and I don't think the leaf spring on the Spot likes my light body. The Mondraker Foxxy was better than the Trail Pistol on the downhills. The Foxxy was a lot more money than the Trail Pistol and there was no option to customize the hardware.

I couldn't be happier with my TP (AL frame). I run a MRP Ribbon set to 140mm with a stock Deluxe rear shock. I call it a Smash-lite :). I can ride it all day and that is what is important to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
My Trail Pistol climbs much better than I can.

I demoed SC, Trek, Spot, Mondraker, Yeti, YT, Ibis, Pivots, Specialized, Scott and I'm sure I've forget some. The SC, Yeti and Specialized sucked climbing but rocked the downhill. Ibis, Scott, Pivot and YT were better uphill but still only so-so. the Trek Fuel, Spot, Mondraker Foxxy and GG Trail Pistol all killed it uphill. The Trek Fuel and Spot lost out a little on the decent. Full disclosure: I'm 140lbs and I don't think the leaf spring on the Spot likes my light body. The Mondraker Foxxy was better than the Trail Pistol on the downhills. The Foxxy was a lot more money than the Trail Pistol and there was no option to customize the hardware.

I couldn't be happier with my TP (AL frame). I run a MRP Ribbon set to 140mm with a stock Deluxe rear shock. I call it a Smash-lite :). I can ride it all day and that is what is important to me.
That is a pretty extensive list you tried! Which SC and Yeti models did you try by the way? Did you manage to test the newer SB100/130/150 models too?
 

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I sometimes wish we could see real data and not opinions---be interesting to see on some base climb calories burned and time to top--this still does not account for how a bike would get over obstacles uphill-and how the suspension is setup---we all have an opinion on how different bikes climb but there is no consistency--for example we get folks saying their Enduro sled climbs like an XC bike.
 

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That is a pretty extensive list you tried! Which SC and Yeti models did you try by the way? Did you manage to test the newer SB100/130/150 models too?
This is all 2017/2018.

The SC were tall boy, Branson and high tower. Besides being stupid under sized, they all had climbing issues. Also the fit and geometry for me was off.

The yeti was a mid travel 27.5. I was not impressed uphill and the price was very high.

Down hill on both were great but that's not my focus.

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I sometimes wish we could see real data and not opinions---be interesting to see on some base climb calories burned and time to top--this still does not account for how a bike would get over obstacles uphill-and how the suspension is setup---we all have an opinion on how different bikes climb but there is no consistency--for example we get folks saying their Enduro sled climbs like an XC bike.
There is no real data here. Everything thing is an opinion and related to the skill level of the ride. I've seen people on long travel Enduro bikes hammer climbs and XC riders fly down rock gardens.

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I sometimes wish we could see real data and not opinions---be interesting to see on some base climb calories burned and time to top--this still does not account for how a bike would get over obstacles uphill-and how the suspension is setup---we all have an opinion on how different bikes climb but there is no consistency--for example we get folks saying their Enduro sled climbs like an XC bike.
I agree...I don't know if that's possible/feasible but I agree. I regularly find my experience on certain bikes doesn't match what I read online. For example, the Bronson already mentioned here; some say the new Bronson has lost its trail bike playfulness and climbing ability but I rented one Sunday and thought the complete opposite. I never felt the need to flip the climb switch and the progressive suspension felt more playful than most other 140-160mm bikes I've ridden.
 

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I sometimes wish we could see real data and not opinions---be interesting to see on some base climb calories burned and time to top--this still does not account for how a bike would get over obstacles uphill-and how the suspension is setup---we all have an opinion on how different bikes climb but there is no consistency--for example we get folks saying their Enduro sled climbs like an XC bike.
I do compare my Strava times on segments I have ridden a lot on various bikes. That's about as good as I can get with data and not make it a job. I combine that with how I feel at the top of a climb or descent and how I am riding compared to folks I have ridden with regularly for a decade.

I don't race so I want to enjoy the climbs, clean tech sections and maintain my relative pace with my friends.

If I bought a bike that was less fun to ride and/or noticeably slower than previous bikes I would sell it after a few months of setup tweaks/adjustments. Life is too short to ride a bike that is not amazing.

At the end of the day if you are a recreational rider the whole thing is subjective and it's about how the bike makes you feel.
 

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I sometimes wish we could see real data and not opinions---be interesting to see on some base climb calories burned and time to top--this still does not account for how a bike would get over obstacles uphill-and how the suspension is setup---we all have an opinion on how different bikes climb but there is no consistency--for example we get folks saying their Enduro sled climbs like an XC bike.
Real data, is there such a thing that would explain all user needs and account for all variables?

I think you're dreaming, we can't even agree on how much travel is too much/not enough ;)

What I'd lke to see is fewer posts from folks asking for opinions that they should answer themselves, ie how a bike rides compared to other bikes.

Seriously, would you buy a car/truck without a test drive strictly based on an opinion from the internutz?

I'm telling ya, these what to buy/how does it compare threads are a dime a dozen and serve absolutely no purpose other than to fill cubicle worker downtime.
 

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You could get the data needed with a power meter, GPS data, and weight of bike and rider and be close. Rider skill would make a difference but the relationship of watts used and weight would be a good starting point.



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Can anyone compare the climbing of the Trail Pistol and Smash?
Depending on shock set-up up the answer will be better, the same, worse :D With a slightly lean towards better in similar configurations.

However, climbing is not something to be concerned about with a GG bike. The answer is they all climb well. They don't wallow. The geometry / seat angle means your position is good and their implementation of a Horst link is supportive and doesn't have a weird WTF is happening dead spot like some others (looking at you VPP on my 8.5 inches of travel VPFree.)

Going to bold this part for any one else.

GGs climb really well. They are not XC race bikes. They probably will climb better than you expect for their intended use. They are not XC race bikes. They are designed to go up well and go down extremely well. They do that.
 

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Seriously, would you buy a car/truck without a test drive strictly based on an opinion from the internutz?
I can demo all major brands and models of car/truck in a 15min radius from my house. If I waited to get my GG until I had a demo on that model I'd still be waiting to buy one. For a lot of people demos are not realistic so if you want to buy a less common MTB opinions on the internet are what you have to work with.
 

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Here is how my new Smash compares climb wise to all other bikes that i have ridden that I can remember

Evil Following MB - draw, maybe a slight edge to Evil
Pivot Trail 429 - Pivot wins
Pivot Mach 6 - GG wins
Pivot Firebird - GG wins
Yeti sb4.5 - Yeti wins
Yeti sb5 - GG wins
Yeti sb130 - draw
SC Tallboy - SC wins
SC Hightower - GG wins
SC Bronson (current model) - GG wins
SC Nomad (previous version) - GG wins
Trek Fuel Ex - GG wins (I really didn't like the new shock on the trek)
Trek Remedy - GG Wins
Specialized Stumpjumper ST & Reg - GG wins
Rocky Mountain Element - Rocky wins
Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt - Rocky wins
Rocky Mountain Instinct - Draw
Transition Smuggler - GG wins
Giant Trance - Draw
Kona Satori - Draw
Kona Process 134 - GG wins
YT Jeffsy - Draw with a slight edge to GG
GG Alloy Megatrail - Smash wins

These are all of the bikes I can think of that I have tried over the past 2-3 years. If there are any comparisons you want me to go more in depth on I would be happy to do so.
 

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What I'd lke to see is fewer posts from folks asking for opinions that they should answer themselves, ie how a bike rides compared to other bikes.

Seriously, would you buy a car/truck without a test drive strictly based on an opinion from the internutz?
You know that's not feasible for a lot of people. At 6'5" I've never demoed a bike that was my size.
 
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