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No more DH bikes from Orange

dhbrigade

Chimp
Feb 21, 2006
89
2
The 322 already disappeared from the site. What a bummer.

Over the last couple of years Orange dropped all the gems in their range: Msisle, 26" Five and now Orange 322.

I don't get it....
 

supercow

Monkey
Feb 18, 2009
970
126
Where does it say they won't be?
Not on their Facebook or Website...it just doesn't list the DH bikes on the site.
 
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Udi

RM Chief Ornithologist: “I Brake for Birds”
Mar 14, 2005
4,815
997
The 322 is actually an awful bike, with every iteration of the 22x lineup they tried to make them less horribly regressive and then finally when they managed to get it just over dead linear, they went ahead and heavily dropped the main pivot thereby cancelling out any marginal benefits of the new shock rate plus making it pedal terribly.

I'm just not sure those guys have any idea what they're doing, and they're fighting in a market where many brands are getting increasingly more clued up.
 

supercow

Monkey
Feb 18, 2009
970
126
The Five, as much as I hate to say it, is an incredibly fun bike to ride, particularly fitted with a CCDB.
 

Electric_City

The orangutans are loose!
Apr 14, 2007
1,528
384
Whenever I think of Peaty, I think of Orange. Then I immediately get pissed off and ask how a company can make a single pivot frame that hasn't changed in 10 years and sell it for $3,200.
 

iRider

Turbo Monkey
Apr 5, 2008
2,153
448
The 322 is actually an awful bike, with every iteration of the 22x lineup they tried to make them less horribly regressive and then finally when they managed to get it just over dead linear, they went ahead and heavily dropped the main pivot thereby cancelling out any marginal benefits of the new shock rate plus making it pedal terribly.

I'm just not sure those guys have any idea what they're doing, and they're fighting in a market where many brands are getting increasingly more clued up.
But, but, but.....it was in the Dirt 100 and Steve Jones likes it.....so it must be very, very good! ;)
 

Pslide

Turbo Monkey
Steve Jones is a good rider and tester, and his writing style is such that you have the pleasure of reading the article multiple times to gather his full meaning, enhancing your enjoyment of the magazine... ;)

I am personally saddened to see Orange drop their DH bike, but at least they are still making rad trail bikes. We have seen the near extinction of "built at home" boutique brands over the past decade, and as a bike geek that kinda sucks.
 

Dogboy

Turbo Monkey
Apr 12, 2004
3,133
273
Chapel Hill, NC
Steve Jones is a good rider and tester, and his writing style is such that you have the pleasure of reading the article multiple times to gather his full meaning, enhancing your enjoyment of the magazine... ;)
Agreed. I found that after reading a few of his articles it was pretty easy to understand the context of what he was saying. Sure there are better writers and better riders, but not that many that strike the balance that Jones does.
 
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supercow

Monkey
Feb 18, 2009
970
126
Agreed. I found that after reading a few of his articles it was pretty easy to understand the context of what he was saying. Sure there are better writers and better riders, but not that many that strike the balance that Jones does.
I'm sure pslide was being ironic ;)
 

blindboxx2334

Turbo Monkey
Mar 19, 2013
1,347
100
Wets Coast
We have seen the near extinction of "built at home" boutique brands over the past decade, and as a bike geek that kinda sucks.
Hey, at least you still got the 'boutique' bamboo builder who makes an alu frame, just to cut it up and throw bamboo TT and DT on it (and then have the nerve to charge you 3k for it).. ;)
 

frango

Turbo Monkey
Jun 13, 2007
1,456
5
Oranges, somehow, has started to appear to be Kona-kind of brand for me, for last 2-3 year... "All" bikes looked alike, some minor changes, etc...
But, then, something has changed at Kona... new ppl? new idea? whatever... they has started to show one nice/good bike after another...
But Orange... well... is as much exotic as the brand name...
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
10,023
2,305
AK
Industry moved away from high single pivots a long time ago due to flexy designs (shock-mast flex caused by rear triangle) and way excessive anti-squat/extension. This was well past when everyone else in the industry figured this out. Udi is right, they tried to make small tweaks, but never really made anything more competitive. It's like they were producing the Santa Cruz Super 8 for 15 years, giving it small tweaks here and there. Companies like Transition, Banshee, Cove, etc. got so popular because of the refusal by companies like Orange to change. Not all of the Transitions or Banshee's were perfect mind you, but they were at least willing to change and try different things.

Unless you make something that can't possibly be easily replicated by a bunch of other people (custom Ti fatbike?), refusing to change over that long a period of time is just a death sentence. Look at ventana, just a shadow of their former self, look at all the old 26" Ti hardtail companies that are gone (ok, some did make the change to 29 fairly well), maverick, the list goes on and on...
 
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troy

Monkey
Dec 3, 2008
844
409
Orange bikes secret HQ:

Old chap Harry: Hey, let's design something cool and put "Strange" sticker on it!
Gingerboy Rory: Yeah, that's a great idea! People will finally realize that we will can deliver something fresh and not another same looking SP. Then we will make it a production bike, and everyone will be happy.
OH: No Rory, that's bonkers! We're gonna make the same frame like we did for over a decade and put some ridiculous price tag on it!
GbR:

OH:





True story.
 
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Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
16,497
1,273
01776
The air shock revolution came far too late for Orange to remain relevant. I really liked the morewood "replica" I had; I didn't notice flex, it ripped through chunder pretty well because of the higher pivot, and pedaling was no problem because you're really either A) never putting that much torque on it, or b) you're putting that much torque on it and pedaling like an ape, so it does a pretty good job of fading away. The brake squat was an interesting trait...she loved to lock up and skitter around, but it didn't make the ride worse, necessarily. I think they could have still been a relevant frame paired with a nice air shock that gave a little bit of progression. I was kinda stoked on their latest strange endurpotype.

I think people get a bit too hung up on acronyms and gadgetry nowadays, and neglect the subtle simplicity of a single pivot bike. Hell, most of the top 10 or 5 or whatever were on board rising rate single pivots. Downhill is a hyper competitive field and if you don't have the latest and greatest acronym labeled carboncraft, you're quickly left in the dust. I wonder how many Foes bikes have sold this year...

Then again, maybe Orange just couldn't figure out how to make them leak oil.
 

scottishmark

Turbo Monkey
May 20, 2002
2,123
20
Somewhere dark, cold & wet....
I think the only people qualified to rip on Orange are the people who rode one of their recent bikes and didn't like it. Anyone? Anyone?
224 Evo (or whatever it was called) count? If so, yes and it sucked compared to the old Glory I had at the time. Took it down a fairly fast, very rough trail with minimal twist bits and the rear end just seemed to hook up on everything.

On the other hand, my trail/ENDURO bike is a Five and I really enjoy riding that
 

Pslide

Turbo Monkey
224 Evo (or whatever it was called) count?
That counts, rip away!

The latest GT Fury super-duper 2nd place WC overall bike is a SP with no linkage to drive the shock (flat rate).

Orange is awesome because it's a bunch of lads just doing their own thing in a shop out in the Yorkshire countryside, bending sheetmetal without fancy hydroformers, not bothered with the latest trends, making simple, light, stiff, tough bikes. And that last part is actually not easily achieved.

I'm not saying Orange is the best bike, I don't think they are, but I'm sad to see the demise of simple, light, stiff, tough bike because folks want the latest bells and whistles. That's capitalism though, innovate or market to the hipsters or die!
 

Verskis

Monkey
May 14, 2010
458
8
Tampere, Finland
I like single pivots.

I hope Orange will make a 323 with a slightly higher pivot point than the 322 to make all the antisquatters happy.
And I wouldn't mind updating to modern standards like ISCG05 and 150mm rear hub.
 

norbar

Turbo Monkey
Jun 7, 2007
9,787
447
Warsaw :/
That counts, rip away!

The latest GT Fury super-duper 2nd place WC overall bike is a SP with no linkage to drive the shock (flat rate).

Orange is awesome because it's a bunch of lads just doing their own thing in a shop out in the Yorkshire countryside, bending sheetmetal without fancy hydroformers, not bothered with the latest trends, making simple, light, stiff, tough bikes. And that last part is actually not easily achieved.

I'm not saying Orange is the best bike, I don't think they are, but I'm sad to see the demise of simple, light, stiff, tough bike because folks want the latest bells and whistles. That's capitalism though, innovate or market to the hipsters or die!
If you want that just get a nicolai. I know people remember them as overengineered monsters but recent bikes from the kraut company are very nice and imho the way to go if you want something butique and well made. Not to mention they define "custom bike".

As for GT - a bit better pivot location and rate make the difference. Though I will keep my legend for now. Is it only me or outside of carbonz there is nothing interesting in dh bikes outside of carbon that happened in the last 4 years?
 
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no skid marks

Monkey
Jan 15, 2006
2,514
27
ACT Australia
Is it only me or outside of carbonz there is nothing interesting in dh bikes outside of carbon that happened in the last 4 years?
Zerode, Nicolai, Cavalerie. I find all these interesting. And I'm as interested in seeing any new non carbon bike. Material comes second after craftsmanship and design. Carbon might be the best material, but it doesn't mean it's a good bike. Should, but doesn't.
I like Orange and their ideals. Their little bikes are as predictable as a hardtail, and fun to ride. The fastest bike isn't always the most fun. Look at 29ers for trail riding, fast, but.......
 

norbar

Turbo Monkey
Jun 7, 2007
9,787
447
Warsaw :/
Zerode, Nicolai, Cavalerie. I find all these interesting. And I'm as interested in seeing any new non carbon bike. Material comes second after craftsmanship and design. Carbon might be the best material, but it doesn't mean it's a good bike. Should, but doesn't.
I like Orange and their ideals. Their little bikes are as predictable as a hardtail, and fun to ride. The fastest bike isn't always the most fun. Look at 29ers for trail riding, fast, but.......
Craftsmanship isn't something new. They had well crafted bikes long before I was alive. The Zerode is nice but it doesn't really change the game. Though it's a nice example. Nicolais are just very capable bikes. What's a Cavalerie I have no clue.
 

dhbrigade

Chimp
Feb 21, 2006
89
2
I never really understood why Nicolai bikes had always been mentioned as beeing well engineered. Because they are obviously not (as good as I can judge with my two engineering degrees).

Although they don't have to follow the "KISS" (keep it stupid simple) principle, it is not a sign of well engineered bikes to weld gussets everywhere- not in case of efficient production, and also not in case of frame durability, where every hydroformed tube offers more potential.

If you design a frame, that needs tie rods, you're doing it wrong.

I have to admit, that they build nice looking frames and I appreciate their love to experiment.
 
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norbar

Turbo Monkey
Jun 7, 2007
9,787
447
Warsaw :/
I never really understood why Nicolai bikes had always been mentioned as beeing well engineered. Because they are obviously not (as good as I can judge with my two engineering degrees).

Although they don't have to follow the "KISS" (keep it stupid simple) principle, it is not a sign of well engineered bikes to weld gussets everywhere- not in case of efficient production, and also not in case of frame durability, where every hydroformed tube offers more potential.

If you design a frame, that needs tie rods, you're doing it wrong.

I have to admit, that they build nice looking frames and I appreciate their love to experiment.

I think you misunderstood the term overengineered.
 

was?

Monkey
Mar 9, 2010
257
4
Dresden, Germany
cavalerie bikes are french and have a model with the effigear gearbox. nicolai will have one too, if i'm not mistaken.

does any bike really change the game anymore? isn't it about incremental tweaks and improvements?
i always fancied an orange but after my patriot developed a crack in the rear shock mount i was cautious when it came to them and their workmanship.
 

bumpjump

Chimp
Dec 8, 2012
4
0
I had an orange 224 evo. It had some things going for it...really slack before its time, light, easy to clean and maintain. The suspension was pretty bad, but you could still go fast because it had good numbers. It was also stiff enough, unlike other single pivots at the time like the morewood, or prophet.

I badly cracked (more like half-snapped) the chainstay yoke area of the swingarm on the on the lip of a steep jump, I heard it clink as I hit the g-out going up the lip!
 

klunky

Turbo Monkey
Oct 17, 2003
1,079
6
Scotland
Im riding a 224 evo and I really like it.
I realised years ago that I am never going to win races and Im not even close to being talented enough to really eek out the performance difference of a carbon v-10 or turner dhr over the orange single hinge technology.
What I can tell you is I that I don't like working on my bike when Im on holiday with it or on a weekend trip. I want a bike that has 2 bearings and no links. If there is play or slop in my frame it takes me 10 minutes to replace the bearings and it costs me next to nothing. Its mega slack too and has a perfect tt length for me.

If santacruz ever make a super 8 style V-10 I would consider getting one for sure but until I my orange fails Im gonna keep it.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
10,023
2,305
AK
Im riding a 224 evo and I really like it.
I realised years ago that I am never going to win races and Im not even close to being talented enough to really eek out the performance difference of a carbon v-10 or turner dhr over the orange single hinge technology.
What I can tell you is I that I don't like working on my bike when Im on holiday with it or on a weekend trip. I want a bike that has 2 bearings and no links. If there is play or slop in my frame it takes me 10 minutes to replace the bearings and it costs me next to nothing. Its mega slack too and has a perfect tt length for me.

If santacruz ever make a super 8 style V-10 I would consider getting one for sure but until I my orange fails Im gonna keep it.
Cool story. How long does it take to pump grease into a bike with correctly designed pivots? Not long. Unfortunately, your bike has at least, two headset bearings, at least one chainguide bearing, at least two crank bearings, two rear hub bearings plus the freewheel mech bearing, two front hub bearings, two shock bearings, and a few other assorted bearings (bushings are types of bearings). If anything, you'll never be able to ride because your bike is FULL of bearings!!! In reality, most major manufacturers have gotten bearings figured out quite a bit better than years ago, it doesn't cause your bike to be "in the shop" and if this is truly a concern, get something like a DHR with grease-ports. Then you can have your cake and eat it too.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
10,023
2,305
AK
I never really understood why Nicolai bikes had always been mentioned as beeing well engineered. Because they are obviously not (as good as I can judge with my two engineering degrees).



FTW. No one really knows what is going on with this bike, but most people agree: Don't mess with texas.
 

Udi

RM Chief Ornithologist: “I Brake for Birds”
Mar 14, 2005
4,815
997
The air shock revolution came far too late for Orange to remain relevant.
Hell, most of the top 10 or 5 or whatever were on board rising rate single pivots.
The Orange 22x is not a rising rate single pivot and never has been (I understand you may not be implying that), and even the 322 is barely past the point I would classify as dead linear.

This means that the "air shock revolution" benefits them little, because there is insignificant leverage to counteract initial stroke harshness of an air spring. The shock that would best work with these designs would actually be something that moved freely initially and then ramped - eg. a franken-CCDB with a progressive compression mechanism (boost valve), and/or even just a long conical bumper.

I don't think they are particularly great through the bumps compared to most current bikes, bump absorption is determined heavily by leverage curve as well as axle path - which is why many bikes with reasonably rearward paths still have a linkage mechanism to modify the LR curve.

For what it's worth, in 2 minutes I managed to reposition the 322 main pivot (and a few other points) in such a way that bump absorption and acceleration were noticeably improved while keeping a similar LR curve to what it had (without negatively impacting anything else I could see).

I'd say overall that the 224 was a better bike, which to me shows questionable knowledge.

Bring back the 222 and slap an idler on it would be better start.
Not really, an idler just allows control over squat curves and pedal feedback. The major problems in that frame are elsewhere - and by the time you fixed them you may as well have designed a new frame or bought one of the many good ones currently available.
 

OGRipper

Turbo Monkey
Feb 3, 2004
9,790
210
NORCAL is the hizzle
I think the only people qualified to rip on Orange are the people who rode one of their recent bikes and didn't like it. Anyone? Anyone?
I hate this argument. I don't need to ride certain bikes to know I don't want them. Lots of folks here can make an educated guess and be in the ballpark (if not spot on).

It's very different from saying a bike is the best ever without ever riding one. That's BS.