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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Posted this up over on the DH / FR forum but figured it would be worth an x-post here:

I've been riding the hell out of my 160 HD for over 3 years now on mostly AM / XC stuff but dabbling in DH / FR. I have ridden XC forever and found myself gravitating more toward AM, then a bit of FR/DH-ish riding, but still love XC. The HD was a great do-it-all rig for me, but I was definitely under-gunned at bike parks, especially w/ RP23s.

Now I am building up a sweet new RM Altitude AM rig with the original intent on selling the HD. However, it seems like you can't get much these days for a 26" bike and frankly I have beat that frame up pretty good, but it still keeps rollin'. I was thinking that instead of selling it, maybe I could turn it onto a mini FR / DH-ish rig w/out having to shell out a bunch of coin for a dedicated bike - throw a different fork & shock on it - get a beefer, shorter stem, some even wider bars - I already have DH rims & tires (I just like DH rims on all bikes) and run 1x10.

I have no illusion that this will take the place of a proper DH rig, but thought maybe it would be a good gateway drug for me and maybe 1 day I would pony up & buy something proper if I get more into it. The other nice thing about doing this is that I could always swap out for some of the old parts and I have an AM rig again when a buddy comes into town.

I'll be honest and say that, while I am somewhat knowledgeable about XC / AM bikes & how to work on them, I don't know much about FR / DH bikes so maybe this is just a bad idea. I read some other threads where others have done similar, but they are old and never really read much about how it worked out.

After all this rambling, I guess here are my questions:

1. Is this even a good idea or just a waste?

2. Assuming it is a viable idea, what forks / shocks should I look at that would fit? I'm assuming I should look at 180mm forks? With some of the great new shocks coming out, would a really good air shock get the job done or should I not mess around and just jump on a coil?

3. What else might I need to consider swapping out if I were to do this conversion?

Thanks a lot for any input or suggestions!
 

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I've taken mine to Panorama bike park a couple times and it worked pretty good. Definitely not a DH bike, but it was a lot better than shelling out 200 bucks to rent a bike. Mine is the SLX kit with a 160mm talas 36 and a CCDBair. The only troubles i had was on super steep stuff. But otherwise it took everything i threw at it like a champ.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I've taken mine to Panorama bike park a couple times and it worked pretty good. Definitely not a DH bike, but it was a lot better than shelling out 200 bucks to rent a bike. Mine is the SLX kit with a 160mm talas 36 and a CCDBair. The only troubles i had was on super steep stuff. But otherwise it took everything i threw at it like a champ.
Yeah - I've taken mine to a few bike parks and had a blast, but on the super-gnar I could definitely tell I was under-gunned and my body was exhausted after 1 full day - everybody said it was b/c I was under-biked so you feel every bump!
 

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The other thing to remember is you might need to change out the components for something more beefy. DH riding can not only beat the hell out of the rider, but also the bike.

Good luck and let us know what you decide! :thumbsup:
This. I bought a used DH bike this year because i felt horrible putting my HD through that kind of abuse, lol.
 

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What did you get? I'm looking at three different ones right now (Status, Operator, and the Norco).
I picked up a Rocky Mountain Flatline black out edition. The guy i bought it from was supposed to race it but only had it out about 3 times. It was a steal of a deal considering how new it was and the build spec.
 
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