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Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by Tantrum Cycles, Jun 21, 2017.
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Here's a a review just posted from an early backer. He built up a bare frame and has been riding for a couple months in BC. A very detailed review, including a couple areas I dropped the ball a little.
but here's some of the good.
" this bike just sort of annihilates everything it it's path. Rock you didn't see? Who cares. Blind drop that you don't know where it lands? Huck it! E-bike going up the downhill trail? No problem. This thing just rolls over everything in it's path while children throw confetti in the air and startled unicorns scurry out of the way. "
"On the very first ride I was giggling at how confidently this bike descends. Now it's getting a little dangerous. I've found myself taking new lines bikes what before seemed slower because of the chop now just seems faster because it's straighter and I can just point it and worry about the consequences later."
"This bike likes to jump. It feels playful and the wheels are happy to leave the ground. "
Annihilates everything in its path yet feels playful? Does not compute.
Gonna use that quote. Thanks
ask peter verdone?
i feel like this happens every time a "new and improved" comes out. The early adopters come out and rave everywhere they can about how good "new and improved" is. I'll wait until an RM member gets an opportunity or somebody trusted rides and reports, but until then I will remain unconvinced regardless of what any nameless MTBR member has to say or what RC shills out.
All true what you say. Go to any "owners forum" and they all love the shit out of their brand. Although there's usually a few haters that snapped one in half JRA, etc. So far, at least my track record is pretty 100% positive, at least in terms of suspension performance and validating my claims.
Or if I just get my ass up to your neck of the woods during riding season? that was a big miss last year. So close.
Don't worry, it'll happen. In the meantime, you'll have to deal with a few slacker mtbr and nsmb types. At some point, the "not everyone is wrong" realization is gonna sink in. Is it your cup of tea? Your priorities as a rider? I'll bet yes.
I will totally demo one.
I suggest late April, lower lot of White Ranch Open Space in Golden, and give people enough time to do a Belcher-Maverick-Longhorn-Whippletree short loop, so about 1:30-2:00 for me, shorter for the climbing types.
I suppose my comment was a little douche-canoe'ish.
Enjoy your time on RM
We shall be sad to see you go
once I can come up for air (get more bikes delivered), I'll start figuring out more demos. Bottom line for me?, I'll go wherever there is cool riding and interested people. It's only the best job in the world.
I might sneak into colorado this winter for a demo or 2, like I did last year. Yes, weather can be iffy, but I got lucky and had some great rides. plus I have some friends and customers there and it's an easy flt.
No dubt that there is potential for your bike to be really good but I think it will almost be impossible to get that real game changing following now days. Current trail/am bikes are insanely competent machines in even goodish riders hands so it will be really hard to out perform something that is already performing very well. Fringe components there probably is more room for such improvements but actual frame revolutions feels like it would be really really hard to do something nobody else hasnt tried and scrapped for a good reason.
Fingers crossed though that your idea is as game changing as it is claimed! Faster bikes are always preferable imo!
I disagree, and this is why I'm on a 130/130 mm bike rather than a 150-170 mm bruiser. I want to be able to hop over obstacles, not wallow in the mid stroke and be captive to the bike.
A. The longest reach
B. The lowest BB
C. The shortest Chainstays
D The slackest Headtube angle
E The longest wheelbase
If you don't have 4 out of 5 of these requirements your bike is an unrideable POS according to most internet forums.
Its refreshing to see some actual unique engineering and design these days in a world filled with marketing BS and bike builders who's Idea of game changing is nothing more than a generic suspension and a mix of the above. Thats all you need for street cred these days.
I commend you in chasing your dream of engineering a unique design that actually "could" be a game changer. Not saying it "will be" But I'd love to demo one if you ever do a demo near N.J.
you sure that's not a fitness issue?
I bunnyhop pretty well for a fat guy, I must say.
i don't bunny hop as well as i could when i was 20lbs lighter
I don't bunny hop as well as when I cared about how well i could bunny hop.
Now I just run over the bunny...
Almost impossible. Let's soften it a bit and say Highly Unlikely. Not because bikes are anywhere near their optimum, far from it. But simply because I'm one guy figuring this shit out on my own. That's what is highly unlikely, nearly impossible.
What I have done is come up with something that is not available elsewhere. Characteristics that do not and cannot exist in any other suspension design. The question them, is, does anybody care. The demo rides and customers seem to indicate yes.How big can I get? Not really worried about that right now. At the moment, I am a professional mountain biker selling enough bikes to make it worthwhile.
And it is faster.......
Come on those dry 2010 boxxers worked awesome.
Go to Chris Porter topic and see how many people here think you need a bike like that.
Well. A) my reach is "kinda" long at 470 mm on the L
B) my BB is "kinda" low at 335 ish
C) while not the shortest, my chainstays are delightfully short at 428 mm
D) I probably win slackest HT angle at 63.5 on the mixed wheel Shinedown
But you forgot the most important thing. Kinematics. It's got to have kinematics or it won't work, Kinematics are the key. Luckily for most bike designers, kinematics are easy. You don't even have to know anything about kinematics. You should know the word kinematics of course, but who doesn't know kinematics. The word, I mean, not the subject. Other than that, you can just get kinematics off the internet. It's really easy, you don't even have to pay. Just go to any forum and start a thread with the word "kinematics". Kinematics experts will come out of the woodwork and give you kinematics for free. And they will be good kinematics. They will be kinematics lifted from highly accurate spy photos and crunched through the most scientific kinematic crunching software, written by people that know the word kinematics.
So, I hate to tell you that I failed there. My kinematics? Sadly, I don't even call them that. I'm stuck in the Olde' Worlde' with antiquated notions of forces and free body diagrams at key points of the suspension travel. And let the kinemathingys fall where they may. Kinamawho now?? I just know what it does and what it doesn't do.
And I'd be happy to give you a demo, once I get all these unrideable pieces of shit built and sent to customers that already paid for them.
What??? You want unrideable?? Try this 73 degree HT, 1 inch of headshok travel at 45 mph, Kamakazi '94
pretty sure those handlebars were 19" wide ( we didn't use metric handlebars back then)
this is Alex G, the guy that posted the nsmb review. He's up in BC apparently riding the hell out of this thing. I'm not sure if this is a wicked headlite whip or a terrible crash about to happen in this pic (by Maddy Armstrong) somewhere on the shore.
Well a 130 vs 170 is not really an apple to apple comparison. I meant faster bikes as in faster in that specific segment/travel range. Would you rather have a DW 130 bike or a urt 130 bike with a shock from 15 years ago? I know I'd take the DW at least!
To allay rumors that I really only have 2 frames and am continually re-painting them and then posting owner reviews under false identities, I hereby present 3 black Meltdowns in as close to mass production as I'm likely to see in this batch.
One of them was a complete build that I really wanted to keep. All Steel and gunmetal. Not a gram of carbonium fibre'.
Size L. 470 reach, 428 CS, 336 BB, 64 Deg Ht, 74 Deg ST. 170 mm DVO butter up front with 160 mm DVO in the rear. High Roller and Minion DHR on XM 1501 30 wheels. Magura MT trail brakes, WTB Pure saddle. And I'm really liking the Diety bar/stem combo.
Ok, this proves you don't just have 2 frames... you have 3 frames?
true, but 3 is more than 2....
New review, posted here:
Sure, another one of those nameless faceless forum guys, here's some comments:
"I’ve now got about 250 miles and over 40,000’ of climbing and descending on my Tantrum Shinedown. I took it to Moab, Fruita, Salida, and ridden it extensively at home in Laguna Coast, California. There haven’t been any easy miles and the terrain has been really varied—but mostly rough, really rough.....Overall, the bike is super impressive and fits me and what I do with it very well. I can’t think of another bike out there that is really on the same level as this bike."
"The trails I ride most often are in Laguna Canyon. If you watch BKXC he said they were the gnarliest trails he’s ever ridden. It’s loose, slippery, steep with big drops, rocks, and jumps.....Descending on this bike is great, it’s slack, the suspension is active and predictable, the braking is great and it’s nimble. The super slack head angle (63.5 degree claimed, I measured it at 63.4—so it really is that slack!) is amazing.....The 29er front end doesn’t make it sluggish at all though—it doesn’t resist turning into a corner. Steve from Chasing Epic rode my bike for a second and his two comments were “wow your reach is long” and “it doesn’t feel like a 29er.”
"This bike flattens out the world. That’s probably the best way to describe it. I’m able to hit lines down hills I never attempted before. I’m actually seeing new line possibilities, uphill and down, open up before my eyes as I come to understand how much more capable this bike is than others I’ve ridden."
blahblahblah, same old stuff. For the record, this is the mixed wheel Shinedown, 29 x 160 mm fr and 27.5 x 160 mm rr.
I love this pic,
I stumbled onto a few of the BKXC guy's video's on Youtube as my 2.5 yr old loves watching bike stuff and watched him flail down some pretty easy terrain, let's not use him as any reference to what is gnarly and what isn't.
Telonics is pretty fun too:
This is from KS backer #4, so he's been racking up some serious time on the bike on some serious terrain.
Long term review
I have 2 months of riding time on a Meltdown and here is my review.
Climbs better than my Tallboy LTc
Downhills as good as my Intense 951 EVO except when really rough and better in tight turns or quick moves.
Rider - 5'11" - 180 lbs fast on the downhills - not quite as fast on the ups as when I was younger. Ride mostly in BC - everything from smooth cruisers to knarly freeride
Medium Meltdown 160mm travel
DVO shock with 6 positive spacers and 1 negative - 210 psi
Fork - MRP Ribbon 29/27.5+ 160mm 85 psi
NOBL TR45 Carbon single wall with
NOBL (Onyx) silent - instant engagement hubs
XTR brakes 200mm front and 180mm rear
X01 drivetrain 10-42 and oval 26 front ring
Crank Brothers Highline dropper 125mm travel -slammed for my inseam
Specialized 27.5 x 2.6 Purgatory tires with Cush Core inserts
20 - 24 psi rear, 16 - 20 psi front
Have used 2.8 and 3.0 tires.
The build was straight forward except for my non-standard narrow Q factor cranks from the previous build which had to be replaced. One surprise was when I removed the shock to add 1 pos and 1 neg volume spacer I was not expecting the 2 spacers under the lower shock cradle which fell into the hole but were retrieved easily. Getting the dropper cable routed took a few minutes but not too bad.
Climbing a fireroad and making it up pitches I didn't on the old bike but maybe it's just new bike excitement. Pedalling on the trail through obstacles feels really good. Fast downhill on a very narrow high speed sidehill traverse finishing on steep loose switchbacks. Tracks really well seems really smooth and quick through the switchbacks.
Kicking Horse bike park which is known to be challenging and rough. Can't believe how this 160mm bike is soaking up everything. Some of that is due to the plus tires and Cush Core with low pressure but some has to be due to the rear suspension. Flies and lands the jumps really well. Think that I might not need my downhill bike anymore. Only one landing off of a very long double and I come up a little short I feel it bottoming. Later added the 2 volume spacers and was able to drop the pressure and no bottoming since.
After installing the 2 volume spacers I go for a short ride near my house on trails that I know well to check the shock settings etc. There is an uphill, not steep, but with a large root to climb over similar to the one on Brian's video. I pedal up to it and right over and carry on with almost no disturbance to my forward momentum. What just happened there? The "Missing Link" puts all your power down and stiffens the suspension and keeps the geometry steep until it encounters the large root and then INSTANTLY becomes soft while it absorbs the root, and then INSTANTLY puts the power and traction back down before you have even fully cleared the root and you carry on down the trail with a grin on your face. I carry onto a trail I named Cliffhanger which is in tight trees on the edge of the river bank with short downhills followed by off camber tight turns followed by short steep rooty climbs and lots of tricky sidehill and roots ending with a root infested steep downhill. This bike rode the entire thing perfectly and all the terrain transitions were way easier.
I have ridden her on a large variety of trails since including a 5000' climb and descent (see picture on home page of Tantrum Cycles), fast cross county trails, BC shuttle downhill trails, etc. and the bike performs great everywhere.
Lots of people are talking about the stiff pedalling platform because that's what the industry has been preaching but this suspension does a lot more than that. Many of today's designs can come close in smooth climbing but none can absorb bumps like this design instantly and then go back to firm climbing. The rearward bump force easily overcomes the pedalling stiffening force until the bump passes. Brian has it totally dialed. Downhilling any rearward bump force is transmitted through the missing link to help the shock absorb it. Under braking the rear stays neutral as the compressive force on the suspension from the brakes counteracts the inertia force which would otherwise extend the suspension. The climbing geometry getting steeper when pedalling is tuned based on how hard you pedal and works as advertized. Uphill switchbacks are just plain easier and general climbing is definitely more efficient.
This is the best rear suspension system I have tried period. I pretty sure it is the best suspension system period,
Reviews of components.
Cush Core - (I was using this on 29er wheels on my last bike and on 27.5 wheels on my downhill bike). This is the best thing since dropper posts. There is a learning curve for installation and removal but is well worth it. Lower pressures for traction and smoothness but no sidewall squirm. No rim damage on big hits. Can limp out on a flat. Run Enduro tires but feels better than downhill tires. On any big hits it damps the hit.
MRP Ribbon fork - put it on and set up as per manufacturer's recommendations. Tweaked pressure up 5 psi and rebound a couple of clicks and have not touched it since. Running with compression off. Very smooth and have not bottomed it. The ability to run 10% higher negative pressure to compensate for different piston areas on the positive and negative pressure sides is what really makes this fork.
NOBL TR45 wheels - single wall for better compliance. Onyx silent instant engagement hubs. These are SWEET
Crank Brothers Highline dropper post - Best actuator design out there and just the right drop and return speed for great control.
Specialized tires - 2.6 Purgatory, 3.0 Purgatory, 3.0 Ground Control. All excellent and way lower price than other brands except Bontrager.
Something wrong is going on if you need 6 spacers in a Topaz.
na. Just think of it as an EV can vs non EV cans. The EV cans are the problem. That's what creates the bike dead spot in the spring curve and makes bikes wallow. But since bikes have way too much LSC, they "crutch" each other.
I don't need the LSC, and a nice, smooth, progressive air spring does the job. And it works nicely with the linear motion ratio of the last half of suspension travel. So when we put the Vol spacers in the DVO can, we're just taking away the "EV" part.
Balloon tires spotted
Your opinion is invalid
He mentioned he tried 3.0's and is now on 2.6's. I tried a 2.8 fr/2.6 rear combo. Great root isolation, but just felt a little sluggish, so I'm back on 2.4fr/2.3 rr.