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1 Cor 10:31
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I started my journey 2 weeks back looking to add to my arsenal a 140-160mm, Full-Suspension, AM Bike.

Kept coming back to everything that was already built for me, had something i didn't like, or would need to replace to make it "right". I'm not cheap, but if I am going to spend money, especially the money it takes for a quality rig, I want it to have what I want it to have.

So, with the help of some friends, I am going to put together something custom...And let time + money put together something that I will be able to ride without having to constantly chase fads or the "next guy" in a year. I just want something that works for me and I don't think it needs to have the best or most expensive parts to accomplish this...but maybe in some areas it does ;)

I am a 6'6", 205-210 lb guy.

As I started looking at frames, I came across these 3 as a starting point.

Titus Motolite
Santa Cruz Heckler
Jamis Dakar XCT 3

I would really appreciate your opinions on this. Do you have one? Can you tell me what you think? Know of something better?

The biggest things that are important to me are:

1: cornering/steering
2: NO peddle bob
3: low center of gravity (I'm an orge; I need all the help I can get to get low)
4: Comfort to ride 10 miles or 30 miles (a definite hybrid XC/AM setup)

Most of my components are going to be shimano...I have a friend who works there and it just makes sense ;) ...Researching the new SLX vs XT series of components.

I really appreciate any feedback or guidance. I was a pure XC rider for many years (stumpjumper HT 29") and in the last 2 find myself getting older and going down hills faster!

...also....sorry if this has been answered a million times before in this forum... :madman:

Cheers!
 

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Delirious Tuck
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2,471 Posts
I don't have any of the mentioned bikes, but I don't think the Titus ML is really an AM bike for bigger guys. Check out the Lenz Lunchbox. My buddy is 6'5" and was able to get an XXL top tube on an XL frame; and he SWEARS by the thing and he's been riding for over 15 years and a wrench for about 12 years.

I've ridden the bike as well (only 6'2"), its a 29er, so will suit a bigger rider perfectly. Its a 6" travel rig, single pivot. It climbs and descends amazingly well and can be ridden for hours with out fuss, the rear end is stiff, my buddy and are are about 30-40#s heavier than you and neither of us have noticed rear flex.

He does have Salsa Gordo 29er rims, which are really wide, on the thing. I belive with a Specialized Command post and SLX components and Chris King Hubs he's at 34 or 35#s, so if you were to drop the adjustable seatpost and do XT you could probably drop the weight a bit.
 

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1 Cor 10:31
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Followup: What makes a good frame?

Thanks for the tip - I am checking out the Frames now...But that has now exposed a much greater problem in my mind....

What makes a good frame? As I've been looking around at different AM frames, I am even more confused and even more unsure as to what I want, or even what manufacturer....Which is a good thing, seeing as I have yet to spend any $$$. Anyway my buddy chimes in with

"Metals are metals and generally all manufacturers want to make a light and strong frame. I believe the emphasis of research should be placed on the welding technique. From there, I'm not exactly sure where to go."

What do you think? What should a 6'6" person be looking for? Weight? # of pivot points?

Thanks - I really do value your opinions and I look forward to learning more!
 

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5,762 Posts
Stick to 160mm/20mm TA in front (Van36, Wotan, Lyric, Talas 36), SLX/XT 2x9 drivetrain, adjustable seatpost (GD, AMP...), coil rear shock, and do not sweat over details of suspension design. Most good frames ride well.
 

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445 Posts
Look at the Nicolai Helius AM, they are very well built and remarkably strong. The designs change very infrequently so it will be a great modern bike for many years come.
They can be built up sub 31lbs and have rear travel adjust 130,140,150,160mm.

HTH
 

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No known cure
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4,948 Posts
I was a chronic frame swapper until I discovered Ventana. Great welds, DH stiff rear end, custom geometry, heavy duty swingarm options, no hassle crash replacement program, outstanding customer service, ect, ect.
 

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%$#$*!
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811 Posts
"What makes a good frame?" or bike is subjective to your needs. Ask yourself what do you value the most. Weight, strength, durability, customer service, suspension technology, price, etc, the list goes on.

Also depends on what trails you ride, or what trails you want to ride. Or what skills you'd like to develope and/or refine. In other words, what frame/bike will allow you progress in certain skills (ie jumping, dh, racing,etc.)

I would suggest looking at the 09 turner DW 5.spot, 08 turner rfx, knolly endorphin, banshee pyre.
 

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1 Cor 10:31
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Vader said:
I was a chronic frame swapper until I discovered Ventana. Great welds, DH stiff rear end, custom geometry, heavy duty swingarm options, no hassle crash replacement program, outstanding customer service, ect, ect.
Sweet recommendation - I think an advertising commission should be sent your way ;)....I'll take a look. :thumbsup:

See...that's how I want to feel about my new bike! lol. Turner and titus seem to keep coming up as well.
 

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No known cure
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See...that's how I want to feel about my new bike! lol. Turner and titus seem to keep coming up as well.[/QUOTE]

I don't now about Titus, but every Homer has a PUSHed shock so figure that cost in. :p
 

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Delirious Tuck
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2,471 Posts
Last post was a straight recommendation this is more my IMHO as an aggressive clyde rider who goes frame, then fork, then components in a build. At the end of the day get what makes YOU happiest.

I owned a Specialized (Enduro SL Pro) and Norco Six One as fully built off the show room floor bikes and found something was always missing, so I prefer as custom as possible. Whenever I look at the fully spec'd bikes I always feel something is missing.

I don't bother looking at various companies first, I look for how much travel and geometry I want and go from there. I'd say 5.5-6" is good for a 6'/200# plus rider that is going to ride tough. You'll want a top tube for an AM bike that is a bit shorter than your current XC bike if that fits you well for a fast riding position. You'd be surprised how quickly you can eliminate frames with geometry, heck at the time the Enduro SL had it all except for solid reviews from similar sized riders.

Then once you've figured out what models are in the geo and travel range, start looking at what people have said about them, focusing on reviews addressing lateral stiffness and bike performance, where possible getting info on the reviewer's weight, riding style, and height. Lighter riders aren't the best judge of lateral rigidity.

Once you've got it tight from there, see about going for a demo ride or two if you can. If you like a frame, then find a fork to match in travel and do some review research here on MTBR. Forks are all pretty evenly priced and quality for models that have been around for a bit and have the same travel/options. Then wheelset and components.

How does the budget fit in? Typically I have a component set and wheelset (i9 enduros for ultimate flexibility) that I can move from frame to frame. So this is most economical if you're not going 100% new ground up. At the end of the day the frame is the biggest buy and thing I'm going to be most an&l about getting right, when you've got it right you've got the performance, reliability, customer service, technology, price that will make you love your frame.

I have a light trailbike and a heavy AM bike, a Tracer VP and a Knolly Delirium T. They're both gonna be in my stable for a while as they're both perfect for what I want them for, I'll have to do a ground up new build on a 29er full suspension next year and will attack it with this philosophy (I already have it narrowed down to an El Rey, Sultan, Pivot 429, and Lunch Box).
 

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WTF.......
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thefriar said:
I have a light trailbike and a heavy AM bike, a Tracer VP and a Knolly Delirium T. They're both gonna be in my stable for a while as they're both perfect for what I want them for, I'll have to do a ground up new build on a 29er full suspension next year and will attack it with this philosophy (I already have it narrowed down to an El Rey, Sultan, Pivot 429, and Lunch Box).
Man that's quite an enviable stable.

I opted for an Endorphin this year. Really loving it. I also have a Azonic Eliminator SS HT.
 

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Delirious Tuck
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2,471 Posts
BigAirGar1 said:
Man that's quite an enviable stable.

I opted for an Endorphin this year. Really loving it. I also have a Azonic Eliminator SS HT.
Thanks.

I didn't do the Endo for two reasons:
1) I had my buddy's in the basement and rode it frequently and knew I loved it
2) I believe in trying new things and knew if I still liked the Endo best I'd already talked to my buddy about buying his at a price that would have had me breakeven if I sold the Tracer. (He's gone all sorts of 29er...)

I'm happy with what I have.
 

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1 Cor 10:31
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47 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Don't hate....but there was a deal I couldn't pass up - Like $1000 off msrp at the local bike shop. I jumped at it....it has deore shifters but whatev'....the bike's clean!

I wanted to share and thought you all would be happy that I wouldn't be asking so many questions...for atleast a few days!


See you at F.I.N.S. tomorrow morning!
 

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mooreplusone said:
Don't hate....but there was a deal I couldn't pass up - Like $1000 off msrp at the local bike shop. I jumped at it....it has deore shifters but whatev'....the bike's clean!

I wanted to share and thought you all would be happy that I wouldn't be asking so many questions...for atleast a few days!


See you at F.I.N.S. tomorrow morning!
the knock on the old treks was rear end flex. love to hear what you think at your size on one of those. they have prety much solved it with the new bikes and the one piece rocker plus the active rear end on the newer models with apb or whatever they call it.
 

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Weekend Warrior
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1,078 Posts
Hey, I looked at the Trek Remedy 6 (online) from an LBS, they have it for sale at $1500, is it worth it? Is it a good bike? How's the setup? I think it's $1000+ off MSRP, but I can't find info on Trek's site anymore.
 
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