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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey, im new to these forums. I have just gotten into mountain biking for the past 2 years so i dont have that much experience. I have been climbing fire roads mainly for the past year and I just got into single track 6 months ago. I have a 06 Titus RacerX with a FoxF100 in the front and RP2 in the rear. So i just started getting into the more technical trails with drops and stuff but i cant seem to handle drops more than 2 feet. I find my front from caving in and feel as if I am going to fall forward over my handlebars. I hear people at the forum talking about 4-5 foot drops and more (wow) and that seem crazy to me. the thing is i REALLY want to be able to do things like that but i dont think I am approaching them correctly.

Also even when I try to go off even the smaller jumps on the trail my front caves in and i feel like I am going to fall and i cant get too much air. I feel like im doing something totally wrong. So i was wondering if you guys here could help me out.

I would really appreciate any advice.

thank you again
 

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Start by practicing off a curb. Maintain momentum. When you approach the lip, throw your weight back so the front wheel lifts off the ground. This is called a "Manual." Try to hold the manual long enough so the rear wheel drops off the curb first. Then set both front and rear wheels down at the same time. Keep practicing this until you have it mastered, then take the technique to larger drops. Sometimes you can pedal the front wheel up, remember weight back!
 

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BrassBalled DropbarNinja
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could be your bikes geometry... try lowering your seat to change the body position... also, sometimes it's good to carve in like that. You almost always want to land on both wheels... Just relax and pull up a little. If you cant land on both wheels, then land on your back a little bit at least.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
hd1287 said:
Start by practicing off a curb. Maintain momentum. When you approach the lip, throw your weight back so the front wheel lifts off the ground. This is called a "Manual." Try to hold the manual long enough so the rear wheel drops off the curb first. Then set both front and rear wheels down at the same time. Keep practicing this until you have it mastered, then take the technique to larger drops. Sometimes you can pedal the front wheel up, remember weight back!
Thanks for the replay. so you dont want ur rear wheel to hit the ground first? and i am going to be manualing before the drop right so that as i go off only my rear wheel goes off (the curb lets say)?

Also, lets say I will eventually go off a lets say 4 foot drop, do I want to be going very fast or slower is better?

thanx
 

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Labikrglen said:
Thanks for the replay. so you dont want ur rear wheel to hit the ground first? and i am going to be manualing before the drop right so that as i go off only my rear wheel goes off (the curb lets say)?

Also, lets say I will eventually go off a lets say 4 foot drop, do I want to be going very fast or slower is better?

thanx
you wnat to have momentum dropping off something.. same principle as motorcycle trials. right as your droping off a rock/ledge, you blip the throttle to throw your front wheel into the air so your rear tire and front tire hit the ground at around the same time. if you dont, the front end will fall and will cause you to flip over your handle bars. noww, if you get speed going up to the drop, not a LOT of speed, but just momentum, you will be less likely to flip over your bars.
 

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One thing I will mention, is that the Titus Racer-X is an XC racing bike. This type of frame has a geometry usually where you are really stretched out over the front wheel. So this bike will be more difficult to ride in technical terrain than say an All Mountain or Freeride bike. I will do 10ft drops on my Yeti ASX Freeride bike, but on my Jamis Dakar XC bike I won't do over a 3ft drop. The Jamis is just not designed for that. So don't really expect to be doing many 4-5ft drops on that Titus.

Take the others advice and learn how to drop making your rear wheel land first, and then concentrate on making them land evenly. It's pretty easy if you have some speed. If you have some momentum basically you just have to lean back and pull up on the handlebars slightly when you go off the lip of the drop.

Slower speed drops require more skill and you will either have to manual, or do a pedal drop. A manual is hard to explain, and harder to do. A pedal drop is easier. Have your bike in one of the easier gears maybe front middle and rear 3. Have your dominant foot at about 1:00. Then when you go off the lip give quick pedal to about 4:00 (1/4 turn) and at the same time pull up on the handlebars. This should get your front tire up and propel you off the lip of the drop.

You also mentioned jumps. With jumps just make sure to have momentum and lean back and slightly pull up on the bars as you of off the lip. Basically same rules apply for drops and small jumps. It's a different ball game when you get into big jumps, but you shouldn't be taking that Titus on any big jumps anyway.
 

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don't move for trees
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if your landing to flat, you want your back to hit first, if you rlanding on a slope, you want them to hit about the same time.
best thing is to just practice on crubs, then try steps, and just work your way up.

as for jumps, just make sure you pull your nose up a bit.
i find my self doing the same thing occasionaly
 

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Your bike's geometry is definitely not helping your for drops and jumps, that is a Cross-Country racing rig meant to stick to the ground and climb like nobody's business. I'd stay away from drops larger than about 4 feet with that.

For jumps, considering you have a dual suspension bike, you might want to consider adding more preload(not locking out) your shock so that your bike handles somewhat more like a hardtail so that it does not suck up your energy going up the lip. That might help a bit. As said above, your bike is designed to have you more stretched out over the bike with your center of mass very forward, try to get your weight to hover over the bottom-bracket or even the rear axle, it will prevent your front end from dipping if done correctly.

As for drops, try to land both wheels at the same time. It is okay for your front end to dip forward if the landing has a downslope to it, as you usually want both wheels to land at once on those, so as long as you are level to the ground you are landing on, everything's fine. If your drops are mostly to flat, I would advise agaisnt it on your bike, as it's not meant to hold up to that kind of stress, but if you plan on doing them anyway, pull up on the bars and have your weight back, practicing off curbs is a great idea. As you owned a dual suspension I would say land both wheels at the same time, take as much of the hit as you can with your body(with your knees acting as suspension) and let the suspension do whatever's left.

Hope this helped.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yup all your comments have helped me understand how to manage drops a lot. i just got back from school so im gonna go out and try ur tips. ill let you guys know how it went.

thanks again
 

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Like me it sounds like your fear is leaning backwards before a jump.

I'm still trying to convince myself that if you are leaning back you can also bail off your bike easier and yet when I actually do it I always end up going more forward which is much more dangerous.

Maybe learning how to ride a wheely for a bit could help us get over our fear?

Being a noob is such a roller coaster.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I actually just came back from trying some things out and i managed to go off a 2.5 foot drop and land w/ both wheels on the ground at the same time. I think i can do the leaning back but the problem is (as a lot of people have noted) that being a XC bike I can only lean back so much with the low head angle of the bike. I try to pull myself as far back but I think that you are right in saying that I need to try to learn to wheely. Any tips on how to do that?

The only thing that I was not really able to do was applying a jolt of speed right before the drop as some members had tipped me. Im confused as to how long i should manual before going off the drop.

Also, i have a question as to what my body position would be if i were to go off of a drop which would give me more hang time in the air. Would I still need to pull myself back as far back as possible or try to balance in the center?

Thank you very much for the comments!
 

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BrassBalled DropbarNinja
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went out to breakin the new shock on my bike so i went out and did drops to flat and tons of other urban stuff... here's a vid


Dont really have to manual it... just launchit and and pull back. You can also bunny hop off it... Just try to land on both wheels...

ps : pardon my noob riding... :)
 

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AKA; Jimmy Tango
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What kind of drops are we talking about? Flat landings, or to a nice tranny? Two feet is the highest I would drop a RacerX. If your smooth, landing to a transition is a different story. I understand you're looking for advice regarding drops, but it seems to me that at 2 feet you have maxed the bike out, if you are landing flat, that is. My other advice is that speed is your friend when doing drops and stay off and towards the rear of the saddle. Practice is best medicine though. You'll learn. See if you can ride with some experienced people. You will pick up some of thier techniques after a while, it's great!
 

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Out there
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ya, that's how I do it to flat, the bunny hop

the advantage of this is that it gets you in the air nice and flat so it's easy to land on two wheels

you need a bit of speed so you don't clip the rear wheel
 
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