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Post-Sovereign Hardtail Options

HardtailHack

used an iron once
Jan 20, 2009
4,739
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Thinking about it being a rigid/short travel machine...assuming both will fit and it's a matter of mere preference, which seems 99.9% the case...would shorter be better for easier front-end control, vice just plowing through stuff with slack angles and longer travel?


Also, just seen on their FB page, first shot of the purple I ordered...I thought it'd be more dark-eggplant...but I really like this.

View attachment 175716
Jesus, that would have to be the slackest bike ever to have a Sid on it
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
After another ride on the Canfield this morning, I think I need the Longer. I just wish Pipedream would write me back. I have several unanswered emails with them...
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Ok they confirmed a Longer frame for me! Sweet.


But it looks like the frame box is too big to send through diplomatic pouch, which sucks. I am gonna need to have a friend in the US receive it then forward it to me via the USPS shipping option here. I wish they could send that way from the UK but they use a courier service and not the national postal system so I'm not sure it will be addressable to the "DPO" USPS ZIP we use.

Booooo. Whatever, though, I'll figure it out.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Finally got updates from Pipedream...container ship is in the English channel but has to stop through Flanders or someplace else, then they'll start shipping out of the UK within a day or two of receipt at their location. I'm guessing I see it mid-June-ish at earliest.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
Finally got updates from Pipedream...container ship is in the English channel but has to stop through Flanders or someplace else, then they'll start shipping out of the UK within a day or two of receipt at their location. I'm guessing I see it mid-June-ish at earliest.
4u2f3c.jpg
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
whew, it finally shipped...

3-7 days to the US, but then my buddy has to re-ship it to me which will take another week or so more after he finally gets it to the post office.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
The King is Dead. Long Live the King.

Barely had a chance to sit on it, but I did take my last day off from work to receive the frame and build it most of the way.

My 30.9-31.6 shim sucks, though, so I can't use the dropper I have. Will need to get a dedicated 31.6.
 

Attachments

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Thx, still waiting on a few farkles. Might put my other wheelset on because there seems to be a freehub issue on this one. I think it's missing a tiny spacer washer that's unavailable anywhere right now.

Could have a machine shop spin up equivalent; guess if it's mild steel it will remain OK bathed in grease, until the actual $3.75 washer is for sale once again.

Hope for at least a short ride this weekend. Once it's dialed in and dry season is approaching, I will probably singlespeed and rigid fork it.
 

FlipSide

Turbo Monkey
Sep 24, 2001
1,228
571
Very nice! I am still waiting for my frame. It is now in Canada and should be here next week.

There were talks of inserts in this thread a couple of months ago. Are you planning on using inserts on this bike? My plan is do do a few rides without inserts to baseline the feel of the bike, then add CushCore inserts. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts if you go through a similar experiment.

I love the connection to the trail that riding a hardtail provides...until I mess up! Then I'd like a little less connection. :) I only had a HuckNorris at the back of my old 26" hardtail. I think a CC should really help to give a bit of margin for errors.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Ridden first time...after COVID and vacation, so not feeling super-aggressive. Holy hell, it's a very long bike. But probably the right size for me. Just need to adjust technique and maybe raise the bar a little.

Climbs nicely for sure, great control going downhill. 29er plowing feels very different than small-wheel popping off stuff. Didn't feel like the 29 was holding me back carving turns, so that's new and interesting. I would consider trying my 27.5s on this but...dunno if there's really a need, even.


No inserts, never have before.. Hadn't considered...might if I have wheel/tire issues or want lower pressures. On EXO casings right now.

Dropper arriving Monday or Tues. Got a 200mm PNW. Honestly, with this frame I'd also consider an externally-routed post, too, and just use the extra cable guide under the top tube vs the overly-clampy downtube arrangement.

Fork is OK but...I feel like my Yarik with Luftkappe is a lot better towards the end of the stroke. This just feels a little dead. Maybe I'll luftkappe this too.

2.3 Aggressor buzzing the chainstay yoke in the full-forward position. A couple mm back and there will be lots more space. Wheel's also 2-3mm off dish, looks like.

I can't wait for dry season to singlespeed it.

1658606559985.png
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Oh, paint seems really delicate, so ridewrap if that's important to you. I will just let it wear in, I think.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Hmmmm. Should I have gotten the Esker??! :rofl:

The slightly steeper/shorter geo might have been better for me. I think the Long size Sirius would have been a bit too short, but the Esker in large kinda fits between Long and Longer.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Hmmm. Long XC ride today. It definitely does not feel like a mile muncher. Steep, rutted/rocky dirt roads were very difficult...front end wandered a lot.

It is a very long reach with a very short stem. (35mm length). Bars about equal to seat height. Did I overdo it on the top tube length? Would I be better served w shorter reach, longer stem?
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
Hmmm. Long XC ride today. It definitely does not feel like a mile muncher. Steep, rutted/rocky dirt roads were very difficult...front end wandered a lot.

It is a very long reach with a very short stem. (35mm length). Bars about equal to seat height. Did I overdo it on the top tube length? Would I be better served w shorter reach, longer stem?

How tall are you? 35mm sounds awful short for a bike of this nature. Also do you have a dropper post yet? I have found bikes with steep seatposts to be unwieldy when the seat is extended when not climbing.

For comparison my Chromag is similar in size, at not quite 5'11" or so I run a 50mm stem. I am a little stretched out while in the saddle but well within my comfort zone.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
I am exactly your height. I was thinking longer stem but that seems ridiculously stretched...

I have a set of higher rise eBay bars coming as a test. Maybe I will match with a 60mm I have laying around and see if the effect calls for more dialing in. Thx!
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Hey, question--is the effort required to lift the front end maybe as much/more/exclusively a product of the low BB height vice the longer reach?
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
Hey, question--is the effort required to lift the front end maybe as much/more/exclusively a product of the low BB height vice the longer reach?

They both contribute but short of doing math I'd say it is the length, particularly the length that the steep seat tube creates. I am guessing you just need more time to make some slight changes in riding style for both the issues you have raised. You may need to ride in a more aggressive position on this kind of bike compared to the Evil. Bend the elbows more to get the weight on the front for the turns. This also gives you more travel in the arms to push off to get the front end up.
 

HardtailHack

used an iron once
Jan 20, 2009
4,739
2,694
My bike was about 470mm reach and I ran a 35mm bar but the bike felt too short so I went back to a 50mm, it was easier to ride when I got tired, it was a bit wild with a 35mm stem.
I'm 6ft and I'd go 500mm reach if I got another frame but I'd probably steepen the HA up to 64-65deg, current 62 is a bit nuts.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Welp, I tried a rigid fork about 2-3 months too early, while the trails were unbelievably rutted up. Poor choice; that carbon fork is fucking brutally unforgiving. Will go back to it, but the Pike is now returned to its rightful place (and with an upgraded damper...)

Got a 50mm stem on now to see if that tames the wandering climbing manners. Will test tomorrow. Doesn't seem too stretched out a riding position tooling around the 'hood...

Wheel and tire sitch sorted...singlespeed setup with 2.6 clownshoe XR4s front and rear (mostly for use with the rigid front), and a geared set on the Bitex/narrow Funns I built with 2.3 XR4/3 combo.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
I run the XR4 as a rear tire. Never been so impressed with a tire. It outlived an I-9 rim via a hundred dings and never had a flat. Prefer something with more aggressive knobs up front
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Yeah, trying to actually use tires for covering more miles... An experiment. I have a dissector/aggressor combo that's been great but I wanted to see if faster rolling would make life nicer when trying to hang with my XC oriented friends over a few hours.

I even considered Rekons...
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
50mm stem climbed a lot better, and had an allover more pleasant seated position...I used to palm the bar a lot on fireroad climbing to stretch out a bit. Didn't seem to lose anything on the descents. Front end seems less of a PITA to pick up. Dunno if I'm just getting used to it or what.

That said, it does just feel all around less ready to get in the air and much more sure-footed on the ground than I'm accustomed to from, say, my Evil.

Big tires were actually great for current local conditions. Ran 20lbs front, 22 rear, which is kinda freakishly low for me. Cornered pretty well--whole setup feels far less sharp-steering than a narrower Doubledown or other enduro casing, but it gripped fine despite that qualitative difference; didn't notice any fold-over of the casing. Ride had some bermy rail-y DH stuff and plenty of natural singletrack to boot, and it handled it all pretty well, and gave the HT a pretty cush ride. But with these thin casings, I did have at least one rim impact that I really didn't care for.

Maybe add a lightweight insert? But then...why not just a more supportive casing?? Guess it's probably lighter when dealing with such big rubber tho. (Fondly recalling my 1st-gen surly Instigator with Marzo Jr T and 24" rims shod with 3.0 IRC Kujo DH tires...)
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
I went down the road of a Cushcore to allow for good ride quality without destroying rims. It sucked. Yes it pads the rim but it also acts like jamming a bunch of spacers in a fork. It either going to be harsh or wallow and rolling resistance blows. Probably better off just going a psi or two higher. Small changes make a big difference with those bigger tires.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Classic MikeD move, finding a barely-used Esker and jumping on it. One or the other will be up for (re-?) sale in a couple months when I figure out which I like better.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
was going to sell my RSD as I primarily ride the Chromag so was going to sell it but wanted to try it out with 27.5" wheels first. Boy that setup really made that frame shine, perhaps the BB was too high. Anyway it was super fun and different enough from the Chromag that I have justified keeping it and doing something with the horrible horrible damper on the Pike.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Did it snap when you jumped on it?
It was more of a low moan...almost sexual.


Westy, I found a charger 2.1 cheap (from someone who upgraded to Avy) and it's good enough for me...I do like the luftkappe/PUSH combo in my Zeb even better tho...
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
49,473
14,916
Sleazattle
It was more of a low moan...almost sexual.


Westy, I found a charger 2.1 cheap (from someone who upgraded to Avy) and it's good enough for me...I do like the luftkappe/PUSH combo in my Zeb even better tho...
I find the Charger 2.1 to be OK but not great on my Lyric. The Charger RC on the Pike is garbage, zero compression damping. Charger 2.1 upgrade isn't worth the money so looking at Avalanche.
 

MikeD

Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists
Oct 26, 2001
11,427
1,459
chez moi
Yeah, it's def not at full price...I got it super cheap so I'm happy with that.