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Manualing

Electric_City

The orangutans are loose!
Apr 14, 2007
1,490
354
Which do you find easier to manual? Hardtail or dual suspension? Things being similar. For instance, not a bmx to a 29'er, but rather a 27.5 dual to 27.5 HT.
 

dump

Turbo Monkey
Oct 12, 2001
5,525
342
Manual and hold it for time or just manual the front wheel up. If we are talking about holding for distance, on smooth surfaces the hardtail has less going on. On trail/bumps, a fully.
 

mykel

Turbo Monkey
Apr 19, 2013
2,020
669
sw ontario canada
Back in the day I could manual a hardtail decently. Not forever through woops but down the road for a couple hundred feet if it was a good day. Full suspension - fucking hopeless a dozen odd yards at best

Since the brain injury, I do well enough on trail that nothing slows me down that way, but to hold one for any distance - not on your life. No idea on hardtail as I haven't ridden one in more than a dozen years but I would not be hopeful

I found on a hardtail the "stability window" was quite large, but on the FS, the suspension action I find makes the window small and nervous - if that makes any sense.

But then again I am a perpetual hack.
 

Gary

"S" is for "neo-luddite"
Aug 27, 2002
2,793
802
UK
Which do you find easier to manual? Hardtail or dual suspension? Things being similar. For instance, not a bmx to a 29'er, but rather a 27.5 dual to 27.5 HT.
Whichever I've been riding most just before.

Switching from hardtail to FS isn't really difficult at all, it's just a slightly different kick/push. Sorta a timing thing like the FS has lag. Hard to put into words really.
Switching from any bike to my Ebike there's a far bigger difference though. the timing/lag thing is bigger and the initial push/kick has to be massive in comparisson. If I've not been on it for a few days it usually takes 3 solid tries to just nail the balance point from initial push.
Switching back to a 25lb 4X bike from a few days on the E-bike is mental at first. feels far too easy to pop and twitchy AF for the first 5 minutes.
One other thing is I don't use my rear brake when i manual and I'm finding on the Emtb I feel like I should learn how to.
I live on the brow of a hill by a quiet rural road so pretty much every local from the door ride (even just to the shop/pub) means I'll be manualling.

*my Emtb is 27.5, all my other regular mtbs are 26" (not that the difference between those two wheelsizes matters really)
 

Katz

Monkey
Jun 8, 2012
235
394
Arizona
I can hold a manual reasonably well on a hardtail, but not so much on my 165mm FS (I just don't work on it enough/often). IMHO, easier to learn on a hardtail but once you get the hang of it, it's better to practice on whichever bike you ride the most.

Me circa 2013 https://www.pinkbike.com/video/327710/
 

Gary

"S" is for "neo-luddite"
Aug 27, 2002
2,793
802
UK

Forget the manual. Where the hell are you riding? On the white warning perimeter paint at the edge of the flat earth?

Scary shit?



Ps. all the fatbikes I've ridden (a lot) were mental to wheeelie/manual. When wheelying they make it feel like it's slighly uphill on the flat and give you the same sort of no rear brake required safety margin a hill does. And when manaulling they sort of give you a weird cushion to hold the wheel up longer than a regular tyre does, a bit like suspension does but... well... different.
 

Katz

Monkey
Jun 8, 2012
235
394
Arizona
Forget the manual. Where the hell are you riding? On the white warning perimeter paint at the edge of the flat earth?

Scary shit?



Ps. all the fatbikes I've ridden (a lot) were mental to wheeelie/manual. When wheelying they make it feel like it's slighly uphill on the flat and give you the same sort of no rear brake required safety margin a hill does. And when manaulling they sort of give you a weird cushion to hold the wheel up longer than a regular tyre does, a bit like suspension does but... well... different.
Haha. Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, I suppose it's close enough to the edge of Earth. Same place Sir Malcolm Campbell went 300 mph years ago. Mr. Richard Noble tested his Thrust II there too, before he broke the land speed record at Black Rock Desert in Nevada.

Fatbike does feel different for sure. I had like 20psi in the tires when I shot that video, so the effect you describe was minimal.
 

Gary

"S" is for "neo-luddite"
Aug 27, 2002
2,793
802
UK
Same place Sir Malcolm Campbell went 300 mph years ago
Yeah. Cheating bastard. Everyone knows things go faster at the edge of a flat spinning disc :blink:
Fatbike does feel different for sure. I had like 20psi in the tires when I shot that video, so the effect you describe was minimal.
Loads of the guys I used to ride locally with got into fatbike riding a few years ago as there's miles and miles of coast, dunes, beach and sandy woodland trails along our coastline. One of them refuses to run low pressures and his is the only fatbike I've ever really enjoyed riding. it feels like a monster truck (but isn't actually heavy) and pings off everything sort of defeating the point of the tyres volume but I prefer that by miles to the marshmallow catterpillar track feeling all the rest have.
 

Flo33

Turbo Monkey
Mar 3, 2015
1,211
497
Styria
Playing in the air or at speed is mooooaaaaaar fun. :dance:

Ok, I'm just too bad at it and always lost my temper when trying.
 

Electric_City

The orangutans are loose!
Apr 14, 2007
1,490
354
I had some time off so I decided to build a manual machine (start the how useless they are argument in "2 weeks"). I've only been practicing on my hardtail for 3-5 minutes a day. On Friday I put the dually on it and to my surprise, it took less effort to get up. I thought the general consensus was that the HT was easier.

Before the argument starts about the MM, here's some input-

It did help me realize that I was trying to manual by only using my arms with a slight weight shift. Now I'm using a weight shift and straight arms to get to the point.

It allows me to concentrate on my muscle movement in my legs to keep the front wheel up while not having to be concerned about the trail ahead (at this point).

My left-right balance has always been good. Fore-aft though on one wheel hasn't been. This is helping. It also inspires confidence.

In the real world, finding the fore-aft will be a lot harder. Because with the bike in motion I'm positive the "sweet spot" is harder to find. But once you get to that point I think the muscle memory will help you keep your balance.

I feel as if this actually helps with other aspects of riding too. Maybe I can now do an actual bunny hop over something more than a twig.

This might not do jack shit to help me in the real world, but it's fun as hell and might help! I'd rather do this for an hour instead of riding a trainer.
 
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Katz

Monkey
Jun 8, 2012
235
394
Arizona
Yeah. Cheating bastard. Everyone knows things go faster at the edge of a flat spinning disc :blink:

Loads of the guys I used to ride locally with got into fatbike riding a few years ago as there's miles and miles of coast, dunes, beach and sandy woodland trails along our coastline. One of them refuses to run low pressures and his is the only fatbike I've ever really enjoyed riding. it feels like a monster truck (but isn't actually heavy) and pings off everything sort of defeating the point of the tyres volume but I prefer that by miles to the marshmallow catterpillar track feeling all the rest have.
LOL. I guess Black Rock must be right at the edge then, with Andy Green going 763mph.

I take my Fatty out on smoother trails in my area from time to time, when guiding newbies around, etc. Anything above 8.5 psi in the front tire makes it feel like bouncing a basketball, pinging off every rock like you said.

Snip... I've only been practicing on my hardtail for 3-5 minutes a day. On Friday I put the dually on it and to my surprise, it took less effort to get up. I thought the general consensus was that the HT was easier.
I think when people say it's easier on a HT, they typically mean it's easier holding the sweet spot. Getting the front wheel up part depends more on things like chainstay length, BB drop, front end weight, etc, rather than HT vs. FS. Nothing wrong working on the skill on a FS, as long as it's easier/more comfortable for you.

What part of Az are you in?
I'm in Kingman area.
 

Gary

"S" is for "neo-luddite"
Aug 27, 2002
2,793
802
UK
Before the argument starts about the MM, here's some input-
It did help me realize that I was trying to manual by only using my arms with a slight weight shift.
:wtf:
:agree:

You actually need to push the cranks (and rear wheel) forwards while leaning back hanging your body weight from the bars both to initiate and to hold a manual.

The rear wheel can't move forwards in your stupid manual chamber [Read this until it sinks in]

Next

Burn it! and go outside.

Learning mannys doesn't need anything more than a quiet piece of smooth(ish) hard surfaced ground and a bike. I assume you have the latter and everyone on this forum has a suitable area within meters of where they live.
 

Electric_City

The orangutans are loose!
Apr 14, 2007
1,490
354
You actually need to push the cranks (and rear wheel) forwards while leaning back hanging your body weight from the bars both to initiate and to hold a manual.

The rear wheel can't move forwards in your stupid manual chamber
I'm fully aware of that. As I previously said-

"In the real world, finding the fore-aft will be a lot harder. Because with the bike in motion I'm positive the "sweet spot" is harder to find. But once you get to that point I think the muscle memory will help you keep your balance."

20 years later, I'll use my MM to learn if it helps me get the fundamentals. If not, it's still fun!

Ps, you're comment won't be taken seriously since you use an e-bike! ;)
 
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Gary

"S" is for "neo-luddite"
Aug 27, 2002
2,793
802
UK
Ps, you're comment won't be taken seriously since you use an e-bike! ;)
'least I can manual my Ebike

TBF I find it hard to take anyone who builds a manual machine seriously. I've had a go on one. it's fuck all like manualling. All you're training your muscle memory to do is ride a fucking manual machine. indoors.
What's next? Hanging up your wheels for good and buying a rip-row?
 

mykel

Turbo Monkey
Apr 19, 2013
2,020
669
sw ontario canada
I have never tried a manual machine, and don't really think I ever will.
I also agree that you are missing more than half of the motion dynamics that enable a manual.

However, I will agree that the manual machine would enable you to recognize the "sweet spot" and get used to its feeling as well as its limits. The thing that I am concerned with, is that if used too much then it would promote an incorrect muscle memory loop that would be hard(er) to break once back on the bike in its natural habitat.

You are not going to learn how to get into a manual with this thing, only what the balance point feels like, but then only in a restricted plane. So, all in all, you will build it, then spend maybe an hour playing with it to find and feel the balance point. Now that you know how it feels, stop before you learn any bad habits. This thing is nothing if not a bad habit generator. Go outside and have a riding / beers / jibbing session with your buds around the bondfire of your no longer needed contraption.

If somebody really want to impress me, construct a cage around a treadmill that will allow full natural movement but restrict motion so to preserve safety.

....ah fuck it, just spend the money on a bike and go play in the woods.
 
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rockofullr

confused
Jun 11, 2009
7,359
907
East Bay, Cali
I feel as if this actually helps with other aspects of riding too. Maybe I can now do an actual bunny hop over something more than a twig.
Being able to lift the front wheel and balance on the rear will vastly improve your bunny hop.

I actually manual better on the full squish bike. I give a good push into the pedals when I bring the front wheel up, this compresses the suspension and allows me to get a nice low COG making the front wheel easier to lift. The squishy bike is also a lot less harsh when you get scared of looping out and pull the sissy lever at 20mph. Confidence is key.

The biggest tips that got my manuals from, yeah I can't really manual, to, I can kinda manual, was dropping my ass low first (with straight arms of course) then pushing my ass back. In reality you are pushing the bike forward but whatever. It should be a smooth motion that makes your COG do an L shape towards the back of the bike.
 
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Gary

"S" is for "neo-luddite"
Aug 27, 2002
2,793
802
UK
Yeah, that's an commonly shared beginners tip. As you've worked out it just makes folk learning actually push with their legs.
I taught myself so have never made an L shaped movement just a straight diagonal drop.
Once you have them you can ditch the L thing.

Rode my 4x hardtail tonight. The twitchiness of the few mannys I did do told me I've been negecting riding it far too much recently.
 
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OGRipper

Turbo Monkey
Feb 3, 2004
9,758
182
NORCAL is the hizzle
I found it easier to learn manuals on a hardtail. The frame geometry remains constant on a hardtail, making it easier to get into the sweet zone and stay there. (An FS bike's geometry changes as it compresses and extends.) Most hardtails are also shorter than FS bikes, and it's easier to get the front wheel up (and hold it there) on a shorter bike. That's even more true if your hardtail has smaller wheels.

Anyway, my best tips are to keep your arms straight and get your ass behind the rear axle. (If you're pulling your arms into your chest with your weight in front of the rear axle, you're doing it wrong.)

I think those manual machines are a waste of time. To each his own but manuals are not such an advanced move that you should need a contraption like that to figure 'em out. There's no magic to it, just go practice on a real bike.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
9,598
1,953
AK
I had a dream last night I was manualing all over the place on a hardtail. Closest I'll come being off the bike.