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Pisgah-Pale-Alien
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Currently I'm riding both a Transition Covert 6in FS 26er and a Scott Scale 29er hardtail and I want the best of both rolled into one, as much as possible. I want not only a FS 29er that will be close to the agility of my Covert on the DH, but more importantly I want the most efficient climbing model on the market. So which one has the best shock/linkage/geometry for a locked out and very effective climbing system, IYHO. Thanks
 

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Having no real experience of the Covert other than a friend of mine having one and having owned a couple of Prestons myself I'd say that the Santa Cruz Tallboy, Intense Spider 29er or possibly even the Tracer 29er should be on your shopping list.

The Tallboy is going to be the most XC machine, closely followed by the Spider, whilst the Tracer is going to be a bit more like your Covert. You could build one up with 140mm travel forks too. From what I gather these are pretty much the most nimble and fun 29ers out there at the moment and offer very efficient suspension design in the VPP...
 

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the flerg
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It would help if you indicated whether you lean toward XC or AM/DH. You seem to be bent on the ability to do DH stuff so forget an XC machine even though they will be the most effecient climber. Above post is correct, the Tallboy would do well for you but I think you would be dissatisfied with the travel. Sultan, Tracer sound like your style but I would go with a Stumpy 29.
 

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Always Learning
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which one has the best shock/linkage/geometry for a locked out and very effective climbing system, IYHO. Thanks
Are there any current full suspension 29"er frames that come with a rear lockout as a stock option at the moment? Maybe somebody else can address that as I know there weren't any a few years ago when I bought mine.

If you want to lock out both the fork (not a problem - just need to decide if you want a bar mounted lockout remote, or if you're fine with bending over to flip the lever) and the rear, you would most likely have to purchase a separate rear shock with a remote lockout. ProPedal setting on the rear of the Niner CVA full suspension bikes makes for pretty efficient and effective climbing - and you have several settings to choose between to dial in the rear. No lockout, however. That's why I mentioned purchasing a separate upgrade for a rear shock that comes with lockout. Most of us riding the CVA and using ProPedal see no need for a rear lockout - it's that good on climbs.
 

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In my opinion if you are wanting to use the lockout you may as well of stuck to riding HT. Most modern suspension frames perform well on and off road and the judge of a good suspension design is the lack of need to run any form of damping platform. I often run my Nickel without the ProPedal on...
 

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Pisgah-Pale-Alien
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just to clarify and answer a question above, I'm leaning towards the more XC models of FS 29ers. Also can someone give me the short list of bikes with the DW rear suspension? I've heard it's desirable but don't know much about it. A brief explaination would be appreciated too.
 

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Despite the claim, VPP bobs. It is a very good FS bike, but it is not the most efficient. I have two and yes, they do bob very slightly and I choose a hardtail over it for climbing for that extra 1% of added performance.

As someone else suggested, get a Specialized Epic. The "Brain" is not a hype. It actually works.
 

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bicycle rider
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I have both a DW-Link Turner Sultan and a VPP Santa Cruz Tallboy. Both climb great, but the edge goes to the Tallboy as built. The Sultan has the Fox RP23 and is built as a fun bike, for going fast down as much as up, and going over stupid stuff. I very rarely lock out its suspension, only on very long, steep climbs, or when I'm really beat. The Tallboy has a Monarch RT3 and is built for racing. Due to the lesser travel, stiffer frame, firmer platform (Monarch) the Tallboy climbs better, although I can feel more monkey motion related to pedaling. I almost never lock it out. Both are 2x10, so no crazy granny-gear problems with the VPP. It doesn't hurt that the Tallboy is 25lbs and the Sultan is 31lbs. Lightweight, stiff wheels make a difference too.

You can always put more air, and/or increase the platform of your rear shock, too.

Short-travel bikes like Cannondale's racy 29er FS bikes or the Moots YBB probably climb even better.

Morgan
 

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I have both a DW-Link Turner Sultan and a VPP Santa Cruz Tallboy. Both climb great, but the edge goes to the Tallboy as built. The Sultan has the Fox RP23 and is built as a fun bike, for going fast down as much as up, and going over stupid stuff. I very rarely lock out its suspension, only on very long, steep climbs, or when I'm really beat. The Tallboy has a Monarch RT3 and is built for racing. Due to the lesser travel, stiffer frame, firmer platform (Monarch) the Tallboy climbs better, although I can feel more monkey motion related to pedaling. I almost never lock it out. Both are 2x10, so no crazy granny-gear problems with the VPP. It doesn't hurt that the Tallboy is 25lbs and the Sultan is 31lbs. Lightweight, stiff wheels make a difference too.

You can always put more air, and/or increase the platform of your rear shock, too.

Short-travel bikes like Cannondale's racy 29er FS bikes or the Moots YBB probably climb even better.

Morgan
So Morgan, no flaming here, just an honest question I've often wondered about, since I own both a Sultan and an Epic.

If you essentially swapped builds between the two bikes, do you think the Tallboy would still climb better than the Sultan?

Sometimes I suspect my Epic might only out climb the Sultan because it weighs 5 pounds less, including much lighter wheels and tires.

Also, in a true trail riding situation, I suspect the Brain rear suspension may only seem to climb better because it feels firmer and snappier. But when the Sultan rolls through a set of 4 roots or a short rock garden while losing almost NO speed due to wheel hang, I suspect I might be fooling myself.
 

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I just bought a Salsa Spearfish and have been really impressed by how well it pedals in/out of the saddle. I've been riding a hardtail 29er for the past 3 years, so it wasn't an easy sell.

My list was narrowed down to the Spearfish, Jet, or Epic. For the money, the SF wins hands down and I like the simplicity of the frame design.
 

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I would experiment with your current bike....shock pressure and tire pressure....I find that my rear tire pressure is a huge factor in how my 29er climbs - it must conform to the roots and rocks etc - or else you just wont enjoy the bumpy ride on the way up, and I lose traction and spin out. Harder shock pressure might help too - only if your bike is squatting.

LC
 
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