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Ok, so I just bought this new bike. I have been riding a hardtail singlespeed for the last 3 years and could use a little input as to the setup of the bike. I ride mostly XC with some fast loose technical downhills, a good amount of climbing, and some jumping - nothing larger than ~4 foot, but I want to start getting some bigger air once I build up more confidence on this bike. How do you set up your Freeride rig? I usually have the handlebars at the same height as the saddle, is this wise on this kind of bike? Also, some input on setting up the SPV on the Liquid would be helpful. I weight about 160 all geared up on the bike. What kind of sag do you run?
 

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Your liquid is not a full on freeride bike, and it shouldn't be set up like one. A full on freeride bike like the trek desiel or a SC bullit is a much heavier bike, and it's much harder to try and climb on those. The best way to set up the trail-bike type like you have on most rides is fairly "middle ground" imo. If the max SPV for your body weight is 130, and the low end is 75 (at least on 5th elements) then split the difference and see how you like it. Adjust from there. Going up towards 120 will give a real firm ride, and you might adjust it to this if you were doing a very flat ride on smooth surfaces, but it will make the ride fairly harsh too. If you took it down to the lower limit of 75, the bike would be bobbing some, although for a day where you are going to shuttle DH trails, taking to around 85psi would probably give you the best ride, but it might be a little too "mushy" for all around riding.

Sag should just be pretty normal, around 25% of your travel. Since this isn't a DH bike I would say that you dont want any more than that 25% either. The 5th elements don't seem to work well with excessive sag anyhow.

If your fork has easily adjustable travel on the fly, you might find yourself lowering it for steep extended climbs. It can get difficult to deal with a trail/freeride bike when climbing because of the high front end.

As far as the seat, I just put it at my regular "XC" seat height. The handlebars WILL be higher than the handlebars on an XC bike, because of the longer travel fork, but you want to set the seat at the normal height for your leg extention. When you are ready to bomb down a longer descent, then slam the seat down to a "DH" position. I very rarely "split the difference" here, only on an extended downhill that is not very steep.
 

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well, since they made a freeride version with 27 gears...I'd say yes.

There's also a new trek freeride bike comming out in 05, it's quite beefy, nothing like a liquid.
 

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I'd say the Diesel is definitely a freeride bike... although I only run mine with 9spds.... who needs a granny? And yes I climb as much as I descend. They are supposedly cutting the Diesel from the line next year and having more of a true freeride bike with 7" front and back. I dunno, I'm kinda attatched to mine.
 
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