Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking for specifics on hard tail versions of what we call an all mountain bike.
I don't mind the trails that I ride but I find myself wanting more.
I want some fast sweepy stuff with a jump here and a drop there and I intend to start construction of just such a track in my back yard

I see some builds that use frames that I am sure were designed for this sort of thing.
Then I see some builds that use nothing more than something that could be considered a standard mountain bike frame with a suspension fork slapped on.

So what exactly defines and All Mountain set up?

I am a heavy dude (240lbs without gear - hopefully that will drop considerably now that I am riding again) so I built my new bike using stronger (and heavier) parts for durability reasons.

I would like to think that I could get a decent suspension fork and have something strong enough to be considered an all mountain bike.

However I have a feeling that is not the case.

So this brings me back to my question.
What defines an all mountain bike?
What are some of the "standard" frames that may not be marketed specifically for all mountain but could be used as such?

What are some of the other parts that make an all mountain an all mountain?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,314 Posts
As others will probably say, AM is more of a manufacturer's term for a ride with suspension somewhere between XC andFR/DH than a riding style or degree of trail difficulty thing. But others will say AM is applicable to those aspects as well, so who knows?

That said, an AM typically has a little burlier frame and suspension somewhere in the 4" to 6"+ travel range. But here again, we're talking a range of spectrum that blurs into the adjacent categories of mtb build. AM - it's a "you know ot when you see it" kind of deal I guess.

I decided to go AM but towards the burly end of the category when I got a full-sus GT Sanction 1 with a 6.5" fork which is ideal because it's super-solid for the rough stuff and yet just light enough (34.4 lbs.) to still climb reasonably well.

BTW: You don't mention what you want to spend . . .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I suppose it is time to tell you what I am working with.
Better yet I will show you.


I just build a 29er using a 2010 Haro Mary XC frame.
With some used parts and some deals I found online I have about $1600 in it so far.

It is a steel frame and, as I mentioned, I selected some parts more for their durability than for lightweight.

It has a 72 degree head angle as set up with an 80mm travel front fork.

Several people have run a 100mm fork on these bikes so that is what I am thinking about.

This will slack the head angle a bit.

If you must know I anticipate finding a deal on a fork in the $600 to $900 range.

Would this be appropriate to be considered an AM set up.

I guess the bottom line is I intend to use it as such so maybe it doesn't matter.
But it would be nice to know if I am just asking for trouble or injury.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ok see these are the things I am looking for.

I guess to make this simple, what would your spec sheet look like for a typical AM set up.

I don't necessarily need specific brands but more geometry info than anything else.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
829 Posts
Are you sure you need a dedicated, screw-around-in-the-backyard bike that is radically different from your current hardtail? Maybe you should build the stuff first, and go from there...

Just sayin,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
fotu said:
Are you sure you need a dedicated, screw-around-in-the-backyard bike that is radically different from your current hardtail? Maybe you should build the stuff first, and go from there...

Just sayin,
Oh this bike will be used for all sorts of things from some advanced trails in my area to my back yard track to commuting to work.

I don't anticipate that my track will require much more than my bike with a suspension fork so I suppose I will just roll with it and see if the all mountain thing is something I like enough to build a dedicated AM bike.
 

·
wuss
Joined
·
2,380 Posts
Try searching for threads on what all mountain riding is, and you'll notice there's quite a lot of opinions. With that amount of views you'll also find a lot of opinions on what makes an all mountain bike... Generally:

- Slacker HA with a bit of a steeper SA so you can still climb
- Built burly enough so you don't have to worry about breaking the components on the trails you ride

Slacker HA and a balanced burly build will allow you to push your bike further. What that means depends fully on you and the trails you ride. Don't get mixed up in marketing terms.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
534 Posts
Purely my opinion:
'All mountain' is a made up marketing term used to generally describe full suspension bike with around 6 inches (150mm-160mm) of suspension travel. Usually with a Head angle around 69 degrees or less.

Generally I'd consider the terrain that should be considered really 'AM' difficulty to be impossible to ride up on any bike. If it is possible then that is really 'trail' riding. You could use the terms light DH or light FR instead of AM. Full DH or FR riding should be difficult edit: or impossible to walk up.

According to the industry there is no such thing exactly as AM hard tail, in reality bikes which are essentially AM hard tails are referred to as FR hard tails and are grouped in with Urban/DJ bikes which creates further confusion. Mostly because there are HT bikes that cross disciplines, such as the Giant STP which is a trail capable Street/DJ bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,314 Posts
lew242 said:
Purely my opinion:
'All mountain' is a made up marketing term used to generally describe full suspension bike with around 6 inches (150mm-160mm) of suspension travel. Usually with a Head angle around 69 degrees or less.

Generally I'd consider the terrain that should be considered really 'AM' difficulty to be impossible to ride up on any bike. If it is possible then that is really 'trail' riding. You could use the terms light DH or light FR instead of AM. Full DH or FR riding should be difficult to walk up.

According to the industry there is no such thing exactly as AM hard tail, in reality bikes which are essentially AM hard tails are referred to as FR hard tails and are grouped in with Urban/DJ bikes which creates further confusion. Mostly because there are HT bikes that cross disciplines, such as the Giant STP which is a trail capable Street/DJ bike.
Like I said above "AM - you know it when you see it" :D
 

·
wuss
Joined
·
2,380 Posts
lew242 said:
According to the industry there is no such thing exactly as AM hard tail, in reality bikes which are essentially AM hard tails are referred to as FR hard tails and are grouped in with Urban/DJ bikes which creates further confusion. Mostly because there are HT bikes that cross disciplines, such as the Giant STP which is a trail capable Street/DJ bike.
So you are saying an AM bike is whatever the "Industry" decides to print in their brochure?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
534 Posts
dropadrop said:
So you are saying an AM bike is whatever the "Industry" decides to print in their brochure?
In a certain way yes, as they made the term. Although that doesn't mean that riders couldn't make their own new terms: light DH, light FR, Full mountain terrain? Medium travel mountain bikes? Take your pick! Head tube angle and the amount of suspension travel make a bike capable or not on different terrain types.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
576 Posts
You have a rigid 29er, and you want to build an AM hardtail to take jumps and drops with, is this what you're saying???

I've seen a lot of builds in this forum of exactly what you're talking about if i understand you correctly. just search this forum for "AM hardtails" and "all mountain hardtail" and "all mountain hardtail build" and so on. there will be a wealth of info, once you've pinned down specific questions regarding specific items, you will probably get the kinds of answers you're looking for.
 

·
wuss
Joined
·
2,380 Posts
lew242 said:
In a certain way yes, as they made the term. Although that doesn't mean that riders couldn't make their own new terms: light DH, light FR, Full mountain terrain? Medium travel mountain bikes? Take your pick! Head tube angle and the amount of suspension travel make a bike capable or not on different terrain types.
So which manufacturer first used the term?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
913 Posts
lew242 said:
Generally I'd consider the terrain that should be considered really 'AM' difficulty to be impossible to ride up on any bike. If it is possible then that is really 'trail' riding. You could use the terms light DH or light FR instead of AM. Full DH or FR riding should be difficult to walk up.
Wonderful, that's a great definition. Thanks!!!

FWIW, I use the term "AM" to describe my 120mm travel HT. Although it isn't really set up for light DH, I do like to ride down and over things that are impossible to ride up and sometimes difficult to walk up. It's just that I pick my way through them, trials-style, rather than hucking off everything in sight. I have no idea what the marketing people call a 120mm hard tail with DH brakes, 2.35" tyres, and burly wheels. "Frankenbike" is the other term that comes to mind...
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top