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So I've been think of jumping on this IH/dwlink bandwagon for my very first full suspension bike. I'm wondering when the differences in the Hollowpoint platforms start showing up. Call me a ridiculously vain bike whore, but cosmetics is the main thing I'm concerned about. In particular, I like the look of the earlier versions w/ a horizontal shock position v. the later ones w/ a vertical shock. When was the switch in designs? How significantly different are these frames? I'll be using it mainly for long, aggressive XC rides (I'm not sure if I am physically capable of long, aggressive XC rides, but at least my bike won't be the excuse anymore).
 

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hankthespacecowboy said:
I'm wondering when the differences in the Hollowpoint platforms start showing up. Call me a ridiculously vain bike whore, but cosmetics is the main thing I'm concerned about. In particular, I like the look of the earlier versions w/ a horizontal shock position v. the later ones w/ a vertical shock. When was the switch in designs?
To the best of my knowledge, the vertical orientation of the shock began in 2005. The Hollowpoint MK III and 7 Point both have this design. On the other hand, the Azure (which is also a DW-link bike) still sports the horizontal orientation that you prefer. It's slightly different than the original Hollowpoint in that the shock is attached to the top tube on the Azure whereas on the original Hollowpoint, it was attached to the down tube. The Azure has less travel than the other bikes mentioned earlier, but is intended for XC use.
 

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hankthespacecowboy said:
So I've been think of jumping on this IH/dwlink bandwagon for my very first full suspension bike. I'm wondering when the differences in the Hollowpoint platforms start showing up. Call me a ridiculously vain bike whore, but cosmetics is the main thing I'm concerned about. In particular, I like the look of the earlier versions w/ a horizontal shock position v. the later ones w/ a vertical shock. When was the switch in designs? How significantly different are these frames? I'll be using it mainly for long, aggressive XC rides (I'm not sure if I am physically capable of long, aggressive XC rides, but at least my bike won't be the excuse anymore).
Keep in mind water bottle position.

The 2004 IH Hollowpoint places the cage underneath the top tube. The only way to make it feasible is to use a side-access cage. This actually hasn't been as big a problem as I first thought. The newer models put a bottle on the down tube and the MKIII has one on the underside of the down tube. Useless in my opinon.

The 2004 HP is a perfect bike for someone who wants to try out full suspension and try out the DW link for the first time. If you look you can find one at pretty low prices. The adjustability of the rear shock allows you to determine if you prefer shorter travel or longer travel. This travel change along with trying different fork travel gives you a ton of options. This will help identify if you're a candidate for the MKIII or the Azure should you chose to continue with the sport and upgrade to a newer bike.

That being said the time of year is coming up for closeouts on the 2005 models. And prices are really amazing. Given your description of XC and aggressive XC I'd suggest the Azure. RS cycles has a 2005 comp model and Performance has a 2006 sport model for under $1300.
 

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KevinB said:
To the best of my knowledge, the vertical orientation of the shock began in 2005. The Hollowpoint MK III and 7 Point both have this design. On the other hand, the Azure (which is also a DW-link bike) still sports the horizontal orientation that you prefer. It's slightly different than the original Hollowpoint in that the shock is attached to the top tube on the Azure whereas on the original Hollowpoint, it was attached to the down tube. The Azure has less travel than the other bikes mentioned earlier, but is intended for XC use.
HOWEVER..... i have a 2002 with a top tube mount,,,oh so smooth
 
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