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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Been waiting months for Surly to get some in stock, and I was finally able to order a Karate Monkey today. Should be here early next week, I'll post pics. Just had to share... :D
 

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smelly said:
Been waiting months for Surly to get some in stock, and I was finally able to order a Karate Monkey today. Should be here early next week, I'll post pics. Just had to share... :D
Did ya order a complete bike or just the frame? Skidmark brown or black? Where from?
 

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Congrats indeed. I own about a dozen frames, 4 of which are retired because of wheelsize :) Of the other 8, not all are ready to roll, but all my Surly's are. The KM is my main ride, no matter whether is happens to have a 1x9 or Ss drivetrain on it. It just rocks.
 

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I'm waiting on one too and the shop tells me it will be in today. I ordered the frame only, brown and after some deliberation got the size 18. I decided to pull the trigger about a month ago so the wait wasn't too bad - had to get all the parts together plus build the wheels up anyway.

I'll post a few pics after I get it dirty. :D
 

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So I've had two solid trail rides on the KM so I think I can give somewhat of an assesment of the ride. This is my first 29er experience.

- The bike keeps going fast once you get it up to speed. This is especially noticeable on rolling wide open fire roads and trails where you can crank it up.

- Going over big logs is easier - when you pop the wheel on the top of the log and roll off to the other side there's less of a feeling like the bike is going to send you OTB.

- The motion of wheelieing the front end up onto logs and step up rock sections is a lot different/harder than on the 26"ers. (bigger wheel to move)

-Definitely slower to change directions at high speed - not as "flickable" I can feel the gyroscopic effects of the large wheels. Feels a little glued to the ground in this situation. Long sweeping corners are fun though.

-Don't notice any sluggish handling on slow speed technical - Seems plenty nimble & really does hold a line through rooty/rocky stuff.

- Riding rigid is cool but I think a suspension fork would accentuate the whole momentum thing that you get with the bigger wheels. Does Marzocchi still make a 29er coil shock?

-Lots of traction on seated climbs. The wheel is tucked right under you so it works pretty well when you drop it in the granny ring to spin up a loose climb.

As for the frame/bike build:

- I went with the medium. The fit is a little tall in the stand-over department but then I like the long top tube. I'm running 90mm stem and it feels about right. I don't like to be too stretched out but I like the long front center of a longer top tubed bike. Need to drop the bars a little bit.

- LX Dual control levers & shifters are really cool. Normally I'm resistant to new shifters (used thumbshifters up until I switched over to 9 speed) but these work pretty well and the shifting is very intuitive.

So far I like it. I think the 29er thing should work out well for a lot the stuff I wanna do this year.

Here's the spec & the bike:

Frame: KM 18"
Hubs: Old Phil Wood FS hub, Shimano XTR Rear hub.
Rims: Salsa Delgado
Tires: Bontrager Jones XR
Stem: cheap Bontrager 90mm from the parts box
Bars: Salsa Pro-Moto flat, 13 degree
Crank: Race Face Turbine
BB: Shimano square taper
RD: XT
FD: XT
Shifters/Levers: LX dual control
Brakes: XT V brakes
Seat pillar: Thomson
Pedals: Time
Saddle: Flite
Grips: Oury

 

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(Tom) said:
- The bike keeps going fast once you get it up to speed. This is especially noticeable on rolling wide open fire roads and trails where you can crank it up.

- Going over big logs is easier - when you pop the wheel on the top of the log and roll off to the other side there's less of a feeling like the bike is going to send you OTB.

- The motion of wheelieing the front end up onto logs and step up rock sections is a lot different/harder than on the 26"ers. (bigger wheel to move)

-Definitely slower to change directions at high speed - not as "flickable" I can feel the gyroscopic effects of the large wheels. Feels a little glued to the ground in this situation. Long sweeping corners are fun though.

-Don't notice any sluggish handling on slow speed technical - Seems plenty nimble & really does hold a line through rooty/rocky stuff.

-Lots of traction on seated climbs. The wheel is tucked right under you so it works pretty well when you drop it in the granny ring to spin up a loose climb.
Yea those were my exact same thought for the most part when i demo'd a KM a while back.
I plan on doing a race or two on mine..
I'll post a pic of mine soon... (its a SS so it only gets brought out for races on occasion)

Its a SICK monkey :)
 

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Tom, great build, that bike looks dead sexy! I so dig that brown, I'd trade my green one in a second.

The chainrings look big, is that a 48t? If so, I bet you don't spin out before you hit 40mph!

For quick changes in direction, try throwing some serious muscle at it. My personal experience is that a 29" bike doesn't have to be *slower*, but can take some extra muscle sometimes. I'm now so use to that sensation, that with the more agressive muscle used to flick the bike, I seem to find far greater precision than the joystick-like 26"ers I've had before.
If you have heavy tubes right now, try how you like lighter ones for making the bike fele a bit more nimble.

Wider bars help a bit to throw the bike around with precision, like your Salsa's. But aren't they 11º rather than 13º? I wish they were, though, more is better.

Enjoy the new bike!

J
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
bigdummy said:
Did ya order a complete bike or just the frame? Skidmark brown or black? Where from?
just a frame/fork. got it from QBP. color is pearl coffee.
it gets here on Monday. can't wait! just for the sake of saving money i'm gonna go rigid for awhile, but i may decide to get a Reba if it's too awkward. my other bike is a Turner 5 Spot, so i'm used to (and love) squishiness. i'm curious to see what it's like to ride a rigid bike. it'll be a very big change!

build kit is mainly parts i have laying around, and a few months ago i built up a 29er wheelset (DT onyx hubs/Delgado rims).

avid mechanical brakes/XTR levers
LX shifters, ultegra rear derailleur, LX front
Specialized cranks, XT bb, XT cassette
thomson post, WTB seat, no-name stem, Answer bar

I'm really excited to try it out and will post pics when it's built. any other 29 riders here in western MA?
 
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