Posted on Leave a comment

Extended First Ride: Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

Extended First Ride Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

Well, after about 4 years I changed bikes this week. I demo-ed the aluminum Mondraker FOXY and decided the carbon version, with suspension and brakes I liked would be a good fit. So far, I’ve been blown away with how right that is. Here we go with an Extended First Ride: Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review.

To start, if you want to learn a more about the spec of my build you can link over to a post which details some of the “whys” each part ended up on my personal bike.

As a note, I purchase all my product. You can see where I see value. Great performance on budget bits (like Magura MT5 brakes – love em, they work great and they save $) means I have more budget on parts I’m willing to go all in for performance (suspension for example).

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR Review

What’s an Extended First Ride?

Sounds a corporate-ese right?

This Mondraker FOXY review isn’t a two hour spin and then onto something else. Getting miles in different terrain over a few days allows minor adjustments and a much better understanding of the bikes finite details.

Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

I’ll go over quick pre-ride notes, thoughts on the trail performance as well as some product specific insight on bits that are new to me on a personal or extended test bike.

FOXY, Before the Ride

Mondraker Fit: Forward Geometry

I wanted to go a little longer than my previous SB130 (Large). Since the FOXY has a longer reach and slightly taller stack per size I stayed in the Large, but it hit my goal of being slightly longer.

Between the stem stack and 40mm bars I was able to get my hands up a bit more which I’m hoping will help my lower back on long or technical climbs.

I centered the saddle on the rails and haven’t changed it yet. It’s a comfortable position even with long legs for my height.

I don’t do a lot of cockpit fine tuning as I need my hands into a pretty specific area to help my lower back uphill. I’ll accommodate as needed downhill to make sure I feel as good as possible uphill… Like my grandma said, getting old isn’t for sissies.

Ohlins Suspension Setup

My  first ride was chasing the sun. Luckily, Ohlins has pretty good setup data available. I grabbed their settings and headed off.

The rear shock felt close. Maybe one click here and one click there on the first day to feel the difference.

In the front, the RXF M.2 fork is plush. It felt a bit linear as I prefer more ramp and support so I ended up cranking as much compression into it as possible on the first ride.

2022 Mondraker FOXY First Ride Review

On Trail

Riding within your limits is important. Even more on a bike that you are unfamiliar with. I kept the bike well within my ability since my first ride was at dusk and alone.

My first lap was an easy loop near work in Whiting Ranch. It’s a flowy, fun network, close enough to the shop I can ride before or after the day easily. Nothing burly. Prior to my earlier demo ride I was a little nervous that the FOXY would feel “big” or “numb” there. The aluminum demo bike felt OK there so I surmised that the carbon bike with better suspension would improve that. It did.

Since it’s a common lap it’s easy to look for a particular setup window: I want the bike to have traction into the corners and pop out. Rear suspension should be lively enough to pump the trail with notable effect, ie speed increase. Similarly, the fork should have enough support to keep the bike changing direction or floating over terrain and not “diving into” pockets on corners or when the trail comes back up from a hole.

The FOXY’s rear end felt close off the bat. It lacked a touch of support and sat a little deep into the direction changes, but, for a first ride it was well within an expected performance range. Where it gave up a little in support the traction was amazing.

The 36 RXF fork was more linear that I liked, kind of right on the edge of the range of ‘ya, I can get this fixed’. But I knew the Ohlins was going to have a more linear feel and it was a first drop. So, nothing to worry about just yet.

While the bike wasn’t quite as lively as I would consider perfect I wasn’t worried about getting it into the range. The combination of compression controls, ramp up chamber in the fork and volume spacers in the rear shock gave me options to fine tune the pop on the bike.

One thing I took clearly from the first ride on the FOXY: the extra grip was notable. This is one planted bike. More than once where the FOXY held a tighter line than I expected and I ended up handlebars, arms and one time maybe face into the bushes on the inside of a corner.

I was most pleased with how lively the 150mm travel Zero Suspension rides. I had some reservations that the RAZE was a bike I would like better with slightly less travel. Not all of my rides need the FOXY’s full travel, but it’s a lively bike and lets me keep something in the tank for bigger days.

When I demo’d the FOXY I found it climbed much better than I forecast. Even the aluminum demo felt good downhill. The carbon FOXY, with brakes that I had faith in and suspension with more compression support would take the ride to the next level. And it did.

Extending the First Ride Review

Writing on a single ride admittedly creates a situation where you have to extrapolate some data based on previous experience rather than actual product experience. To have a more substantial and credible post I wanted a few more rides on the FOXY.

My next ride was in Mission Trails in San Diego. This is a park not too far from my house. A little steeper and burlier terrain in parts than Whiting, but its still a fun ‘by yourself’ pedal. BTW, I don’t see a reason to test in conditions that push you to the point you can’t really understand what’s happening, like if my first ride was in the burliest terrain I can handle what am I going to write competently?

22 Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

Climbing the Mondraker FOXY

As always, I have to disclaim this: I am not a good climber. Not my forte nor my priority. So, most of you can out climb me. I get uphill to ride down – and as long as I eventually get up there I’m quite pleased hahaha…

What am I looking for when climbing for a competent write-up? Traction and acceleration. Those two things I can feel and translate to other riders. As far as churning your legs faster and further? You got that I’m sure!

Mission Trails offers sections to feel how a bike tracks around switchbacks, handles loose rocks and gets over protruding rocks.

Switchbacks

The Mondraker tracked pretty well, around even tight switchbacks. I was intrigued to see how the slacker headtube angle compared to my previous SB130 TLR would behave. Pretty close, and without the four years of experience on the bike too…

On the tightest radius corners I found myself letting the front end get light and driving around off the back wheel. Concentrating and keeping the rear wheel under power when I get tired is difficult. I tend to just bash things and stay under power. A stronger rider likely would kind of half stand to pedal and push the front end down around the corner. The survival pedal-er, me, needs to keep the momentum going or the pedals stop and it’s foot down. This leads to staying in a more singular position and letting the front end go light and kind of body-englishing it around. Something I could work on for sure. Bike is more competent than me in this situation.

I’ll touch again on climbing switchbacks a bit later.

Climbing Rocks and Baby Heads

The FOXY climbed very sure footed in loose rocks. Zero Suspension didn’t suffer wheel spin even as the rocks moved under the power.

It behaved even better in the larger protruding rock sections. During a test ride I try to use a combination of lines that I know as well as off-line bizarre routes to see if the bike wants to behave or not. In both scenarios the FOXY was extremely competent and predictable.

One of the most notable things, the Mondraker, being so sure footed, keeps the rear tire in line very well. Compared to bikes that can lose the read end under power and kind of fish-tail around the Mondraker overall kept its heading well. This is beneficial as it requires less body-english to keep the bike moving forward.

My favorite aspect climbing was how the bike feels like it ‘crawls’ up rocks.

Previous bikes I’ve had seem to push ‘back’ when approaching some of the lines in Mission Trails. As an example, you’d almost have to pedal into the section, start up the rocks, the suspension would come back and as a rider you’d push the bike back forward to continue. It takes much more energy and thought (two things I might not have a lot of climbing admittedly).

The FOXY seems to ‘crawl’ up the rock rather than pushing back. Much more of the momentum is retained in a forward direction which is a confident feel. It’s notable how well a 150mm rear travel bike climbs these days – man it’s come a long way from when I started riding…

Acceleration

OK, while not a climber, I’m a strong enough to tell how a bike accelerates. I then extrapolate this into efficiency a bit.

The Mondraker accelerates really well whether pedaling seated or standing. When you increase the wattage to the cranks the bike quickly responds.

This compares favorably against bikes that feel like when you start putting a ton of power they take a second to load the suspension then start spinning the wheel a bit more. The FOXY rewards the effort quickly and crisply.

The bike accelerates quickly and it feels appropriate to the amount of increase of power to the increase of ground speed.

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

Mondraker FOXY Downhill Performance

Well, here’s where it gets fun. Like real fun.

The FOXY is a blast downhill.

It corners well, it handles chunk, it has a personality that is snappy enough for me but isn’t so fast handling that it will give you issues if you push it a bit past your skill level.

Cornering

This is a very planted bike. As such braking performance is great.

Jump on the brakes hard and roll off them before a corner you’ll find the FOXY slows well and then resets to track excellent into the turn. It is quick to change direction and confident accepting lean angle both early and in the middle of the corner.

Four rides in and I found the limit of how much rear compression I like, where the bike starts to chatter just a bit in the mid corner at speed. Now I’m dialing back to get a bit more grip in the mid and corner exit.

I started with stock volume spacing and ran the suggested air pressure and close to the compression and rebound settings. Having found the limit with the compression and PSI my next step will be to go back with volume spacers and see if adding some support through air ramp allows me to back off the compression a bit.

Frankly, in a short time I’ve gotten very comfortable with the FOXY’s cornering.

At first the added grip even had me running too tight, into bushes on the inside of corners once or twice! After a couple instances I thought the bike might have pushed out of a corner – but going back and glancing at footage it might be that the additional grip has lead to an increase in cornering speed. (not even riding at full tilt! Impressive)

Finally on cornering: after each ride I note the bike’s condition with particular interest to travel used and whether the tires have any tell-tale markings on the sidewalls. I have yet to get any of the slashes on the sidewall, so I have a little more traction and compliance left in the tires if I want it as well.

Improving the bike in the corners

I’m still working to get a bit more support out of the front end which I believe will give the bike even a touch more speed out of corner pockets. A lot of this comes back to my riding size and ground speed combo.

While the Ohlins fork is a bit linear for me, a heavier rider on the max end of the air pressure, for the average 160-220lb rider I would say that the fork setup is much easier. The performance window allows for a more precise setup feel and wider range of options. Particularly using the ramp up chamber at a higher pressure per weight.

I’m working on some setup with it and it’s not so far out of the window that its unusable by any stretch. I suspect that I’ll find some magic in it. If I don’t I’ll go back to a FOX 36 or 38 GRIP2.

It’s the mid support that I’m working through at the minute.

The fork is plush, which I could give up some for more support, but I’m trying ride a normalized sag setting at the moment. I may increase the PSI and look for maybe 15-18% sag but I’m still playing with other options before I get too far away from the 20% sag.

The Ohlins high speed compression works well. I cranked it up a couple rides and it kept me out of the final bit of travel. I’ve backed it down a bit as it wasn’t adding as much to the mid stroke as I wanted and was costing me that last bit of travel in a couple situations that might have warranted it.

Personally I’m just looking for a little more right as the bike starts to set into the travel. I feel like its there and I feel like I’ll find it. Or I’ll keep pestering Joe until he goes into it and I get the first Ohlins Pro Tune…

Speaking of the fork let’s look at some terrain that needs more fork.

Chunky Terrain

The quick take: Mondraker’s FOXY is predictable and at home in chunky terrain.

The FOXY’s sure-footed personality glows when you point the bike downhill. Even running on the far end of ‘poppy’ compression the bike sticks to the ground. Since it’s hard to push the bike to a point of skipping across the trail both turning and braking capacity are excellent.

Looking at my notes, the only complaints have been based the feeling like I’ve run deeper into the front travel than I prefer, but the fork hits the HSC and hasn’t buried. I would just like a little less of that dive in feel.

I’ve bottomed the rear end of the bike a couple times but haven’t felt a hard bottom yet. It has a confident feel through the travel.

Downhill Riding Position

My opinion on the Mondraker’s riding position, given that my setup is a compromise for my back, should be taken with a little bit of a grain of salt.

However, my setup isn’t so far in the weeds that it needs to be disregarded (try to sneak a look at test bike setups sometimes, I don’t know how some of these reviewers even ride ‘em…)

I’ve found the FOXY feels like you’re ‘in’ not ‘on’, which is nice. Front and rear wheel are both relatively easy to control from a standard downhill position. The bike behaves as expected if you move weight fore and aft.

I find I’m riding slightly more nose heavy than my previous rig. This might be one of the reasons I keep coming back to a bit more mid support out of the fork. But there’s also a difference of 4 years versus 4 rides experience. Maybe I’m getting used to it. I’ll have to look at if I’ve raised my hands a notable amount as well.

Slacker Headtube and More Trail

Compared to the 130 LR the FOXY has a slacker headtube, and thus an increase in trail measurement. I was a little fearful that this would numb the front end of the bike on trail and light enduro terrain.

So far, I haven’t noticed that. My continued adjustments have all improved the cornering of the FOXY downhill but none of them are based on a numb feeling.

Uphill in tight switchbacks I think I feel it a little more.

I found two ways to make the FOXY get around the real tight stuff.

Steering with the bars and leaning ‘out’ of the turn to keep the bike standing as straight as possible kept the steering input from wanting to exacerbate the lean angle.

The second option is not steering much at all and really leaning into the uphill corners. This requires more power as it works better at speed.

Both of the above worked. What felt like it didn’t work as well was kind of half turn half lean options. We live in a polarized world – so what should I expect haha…

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

Wrapping Up the Mondraker FOXY Review

I’m going to try to be concise as I’m edging into 3000 words and all the seo machines are going to hate me… Also I want to have a couple blurbs on some new parts I’m riding and what I think as well below.

The FOXY with a 160mm fork and 150mm of rear travel on paper probably doesn’t look as trail and light enduro friendly as it is. This is an efficient pedaling bike. Mondraker’s well-designed suspension, they’re not using quantity of travel to make up for poor quality of travel like some designs do, means the bike feels fun and poppy throughout the travel. I don’t notice the bike using more travel than it needs nor do I feel the bike being harsh or uncomfortable sitting in the middle of the travel. I suppose what that means, the ramp and compression pairing on the rear shock give a good feeling balance through the travel. Instead of feeling ultra linear even though maybe I’m using 135-140 of the rear travel the bike feels progressive and poppy without becoming teeth rattling harsh in the last bit of rear travel.

Downhill Mondraker’s years on the race course have produced a bike that’s competent and predictable in a wide range of terrain. I didn’t notice any harsh square edge hits and the bike ate up terrain even when I deliberately put it in abusive lines.
For the average rider the Mondraker FOXY’s handling is awesome. The bike’s braking capacity is tremendous allowing confidence at speed. The grip is top of class, again adding confidence. And the bike changes directions quickly and competently.

More to come on this I’m sure, but let me quickly touch on some opinions on new parts to my bike. Starting at the back and going to the front:

10-52t cassette. I’m not a good climber. But, if you are, that 52t is a big jump from the 42t. I think I will end up getting stronger as I find myself in the 42t more often because I’m tepid to shift hard into that big 52t. But, it is a great granny gear!

Small flange diameter DT Swiss 350 hubs. This will be interesting. I’ve run 28h DT Swiss before, but this smaller diameter hub with straight pull spokes will be intriguing. Upside potentially more damping during cornering. The DT internals are top notch – but will the longer spokes cause me any issues? (again, I’m bigger than you!)

AbsoluteBlack Oval Chainring. First thoughts, when you’re going so slow that everything hurts well it hurts the same. If you get up a bit past that pace I can see where the change in leverage does probably make it an easier pedaling system. Since this is the pace I tend to live in I think I will like it overall. If you really start cranking a huge cadence it feels a little strange – but – that’s not been my problem in years…

Ohlins Suspension. See above – more to come on that too.

Fidloc magnetic bottle cage. Interesting. Makes a different noise downhill than I’m used to, but seems to stay in place and has a low profile overall.

New FOX Transfer Seatpost. Love the saddle mounting hardware. Love it.

Tag T1 Carbon 40mm rise bars. Love them so far. I went with them for the height as well as I wanted to try their ovalized internal carbon design to see how that feels on trail.

Ergon GE1 grips. RIP to the WTB Padloc I loved for so many bikes. I picked the Ergon as they had a nice feel on the outside of the top surface where you’re looking offer a bit more squish.

 


Thanks for the read! Shopping for your dream Mondraker? Want to learn more about the bike or the Ohlins’ Suspension? Check out the links below

Check out our in-stock bikes

Adding Volume Spacers to Ohlins TTX Air Shock

Learn how to change an Ohlins TTX Volume Spacer

Posted on Leave a comment

Adding Volume Spacers to Ohlins TTX Air Shock

Adding Volume Spacers to Ohlins TTX Air Shock

Enjoy a quick video, blog and some detail photos which detail adding volume spacers to Ohlins TTX Air Shocks. Now, Ohlins has some great data on their site as well, we’ll provide a couple links below, but here’s a couple real world tips and tricks for the Ohlins TTX Air Shock spec’d on the 2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR.

Airing Down an Ohlins TTX: A Bit Different Than I’ve Been Used To

Let’s start with really the biggest difference I felt like I came across when changing volume spacers on the Ohlins TTX. When you release the air the shock compresses. With some force!

Ohlins TTX Air Shock Compressed with No Air in can

Aired down – and compressed! I took out the valve stem just to make sure I had all the main system open…

This created two interesting problems for me until I got it confirmed from our mechanics…

I watched the Ohlins video and saw the shock compress but didn’t think much of it (or didn’t think of what I was really seeing I guess!)

So, I went to air down the TTX like I had so many other shocks with a 3 way wrench. Except, when the TTX compressed the head of the shock grabbed the wrench and pinned it to the frame! Well, I thought, I’ll just air it up – oh wait, there’s a three way stuck in the way… It wasn’t too hard to get some leverage on the rear triangle to free the wrench but I did feel like a rookie for sure. I included the clip in the video since its kind of funny I suppose.

Now, the other issue, I immediately recalled other brands of suspension that if you aired the shock down and it went down (suck down as it’s called) it was going to be a somewhat sketchy problem to disassemble it. So I grabbed Tracy and made sure that 1 I hadn’t skipped any steps and 2 wasn’t going to have a shock detonating with a loaded negative air chamber damaging anyone in the work area…

Turns out this particular shock just needs to be unthreaded for a bit to come loose and allow for the volume spacers to be accessed.

If you watched the video the rest of this is just to help reinforce your understanding – and it’s great for SEO too right?

Loosen the Air Shaft

Loosen the air shaft which clamps down the outer sleeve. This is done with a bottom bracket tool. Be patient and get a good grip on it. After a couple turns you can easily turn it by hand and put the tool back on the table.

Once you’ve cleared the threads the shock will extend like the image below.

Ohlins TTX Air Shock Unscrewed and Extended

Ohlins TTX Volume Spacers

This TTX carries two different types of volume spacers, in two different places. When you open the shock you will see the two band volume spacers spec’d on the 2022 Mondraker Foxy’s shock.

Ohlins TTX Air Shock stock volume spacers

The other volume spacer, which gives you the most amount of ramp rate increase is located at the other end of the shock on the shaft.

It is a puck style volume spacer and 1 and only 1 spacer should be installed on the inner shaft.

First pull back the retainers.

Determine volume spacers in Ohlins TTX Air Shock

Carefully move the retainers out of the way and pull out the volume spacer.

In this case the was the Ohlins E volume spacer (the biggest available in the kit) and since I wanted to max the volume spacers I simply put it back in its place.

Determine volume spacers in Ohlins TTX Air Shocks

Maximum Volume Spacers for Ohlins TTX

At this point I needed to determine how many volume spacers I could add to the shock.

Using the Ohlins chart from the TTX owners manual, and a distributor to figure out the part number for the shock I determined I could run 20,000 cubic mm’s.

The stock puck was 12,000 and the 2 bands were 2,000 each – meaning I could add two additional band spacers.

Ohlins TTX Maximum Volume Spacers Installed

which I did.

Adding Volume Spacers to Ohlins TTX Air Shock

To finish adding volume spacers to Ohlins TTX Air Shock simply reassemble the shock in reverse order of disassembly.

One thing to make sure of – the outer air can has a locating tab, insure that it is fit into the proper slot during reassembly.

IF YOU HAVE ANY DOUBTS OF YOUR MECHANICAL ABILITY, HAVE A PROFESSIONAL SERVICE OR CHECK YOUR WORK!

Ohlins TTX air can tab

Check out more on the Ohlins’ TTX on BikeCo.com:

Extended First Ride: A Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review

Ohlins TTX Owners Manual (page 11 illustrates volume spacer options)

(note – one of the manuals indicated a higher max PSI than was shown on my shock. I deferred to the detail ON MY SHOCK. If you have issues or questions with that contact your sales team or Ohlins for confirmation)

Ohlins Volume Spacer Video

Return to Top of Page

Posted on Leave a comment

Mondraker MIND Telemetry Unavailable in the US

Mondraker MIND Telemetry Unavailable in the US
(clip from) Mondraker FOXY Carbon First Ride Review: Extended

Mondraker MIND Telemetry Unavailable in the US

 

I DON’T MIND

 
A question my, rather small, set in our ways, group of riding friends asked was what I thought about the Mondraker MIND Telemetry.
 
Well, for whatever reason: App licensing? Patent limitations? Something else I don’t know about? I dunno. But, however you cut it: MIND telemetry is not available on the US bikes.
And it doesn’t bother me.
 
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy data. It’s interesting and you can look at it a lot of ways. But, like an old boss of mine was apt to say: figures don’t lie, but liars can figure…

APP DRIVEN TELEMETRY

 
So, app driven suspension suggestions (turn this dial put in this PSI) even based on a good deal of telemetry input, well it’s just not 100% credible to me. (funniest one was a GPS setting that rated like smoothness – What? How? Why?)
 
Telemetry sheets are graphs with spurts of data points. Usually spikes or arcs and all kinds of shapes. Any app that’s telling you “twist this 2 clicks and that 1 click and do this with the PSI” is using an algorithm of what it sees to make those suggestions.
 
Does data help a pro racer with a competent suspension tech? Yup. But a large part of that relationship is talking about “this is what I felt when I was riding best”, “this might have led me to be in the wrong position during ‘x’” and “ya, I just fluffed the lines there and the data is outlier.”
 
Working with a person who can chat about all the minutia has huge dividends and that’s one of the focal points of our bike suspension setup, delivery, and follow up process here at BikeCo.com
(which is SUPER important on the heavier eMTB rigs – if your eMTB isn’t setup right, well, sorry. You’re gonna chase that for a while and it’s going to compromise your ride quality)

CAN YOU SEE THE INPUT?

 
Riding footage adds an interesting dynamic to fine tune setup (notice the racers tend to practice with them?).
 
Being able to watch and see: “ya, that’s a proper line within my skill set and I think the fork should have rode taller” versus, “whoops, ya, I smashed through the travel because of rider error there – glad the bike was there at all!”

MY EXAMPLE: DEMO RIDE QUESTION

 
On my Mondraker FOXY demo I came across an example I think would have confused an app and led down the wrong rabbit hole.
The demo (which lacked the low and high speed compression controls on the FOXY Carbon RR Ohlins or the RAZE Fox Factory suspension) was quick to turn down, or dive into corner entry.
 
However, it felt like it would “stall” for lack of a better term when I tried to drive it to full lean angle around the apex.
 
So what was going on? What were my options? And, getting to the point of this blurb – does an app have any chance at this or did I need a certain amount of data and review with a competent person? (bet you know which way I’m going)
 
Joe and I chatted about it over lunch after the ride. (I have access to Joe Binatena one of the most sought after suspension people in MTB – and you know, if you buy a bike, suspension or a Pro Tune from The Bike Company so do you through our team…)
 
Mid to fast Bermed corners. Suspension PSI setup properly. Tire pressure OK, possibly a little high (I hate flats, and I hate flats more on test rides…)
 
I generally don’t trail brake through corners (in fact the demo bike had brakes I hated so I was braking super early to insure it would slow down…) so the bike was sitting at a proper attitude going into the turns.
 
If you brake too late or into a corner it creates a “nose down” attitude. This creates issues as the bike runs deeper into travel giving up some traction and having a more “harsh” feel – maybe harsh isn’t the right word, but a faster or more aggressive push back since it’s running at a deeper PSI?
 
Not to toot my own horn, but it might take a bit of experience to feel the bike “hang” during the lean. Of course, now that you know it can be a thing you’re ahead of where I was then right??
It might be more likely that a rider would note the bike felt slow rotating around the corner and wanted to push (understeer) to the outside of the corner.
 
Those complaints are probably going to lead to softer tires and possibly a softer suspension right? Help keep more grip to get around the corner?
 
Except, in my case that’s not what was happening. Those changes would just make the bike squirmy (too low of tire pressure) and slow out of pocketed corners as the suspension would use too much travel compromising momentum and steer input.
 
Would it have killed me to go the wrong direction with those setup mods? Probably not.
 
BUT! If I came back after the ride with lower pressures and still had the complaint and went well, if SOME was a good idea MORE must be better… I’m quickly off into the weeds of suspension setup and probably frustrated with my purchase.
 
Here’s where a live, thinking person with access to a team (am I describing BikeCo? Of course I am) has a huge advantage. If I had lowered the pressure and spoke with my contact and was like “WHOA, didn’t help” we’re probably looking at other setup options.
Because what was the fix? More ramp, more compression. The bike wasn’t exactly “pushing” or over-steering as much as it was unable to maintain the tighter early apex cornering line which then set me wider at exit.
 
Going frame by frame with the riding footage it seemed like the fork was setting in a touch deep into the travel into the corner apex / pocket, but then kind of slowly settling down a touch deeper as well. Probably the split second of the bike compressing (and slowing) drove my body slightly ahead in the bike which then added to more of front end settling in.
 
Watching the video the trail showed the bike SHOULD have load through the suspension at that point, but it was setting in (as you would expect) then kind of slowly continuing to load.
 
It made sense to have the suspension loaded into the corners, so I wouldn’t want to increase rebound as that would decrease overall grip and ride quality bouncing me around.
 
Air pressure was an option – however the bike wasn’t sitting super deep on the first section of the lean or cornering. So again, increasing air pressure would decrease grip and could induce skip.
 
So where were the answers?
 
Increasing Ramp Rate: make each MM of the suspension past sag take a little bit more load to compress it.
 
Increasing Low Speed Compression: similar to the ramp rate adjustment increasing compression slows the forks progression through the travel giving it more support.
 
Perhaps a small increase to High Speed Compression: Adding high speed compression in small increments can be helpful too.
 
Back to my point on having my phone send me a post ride SMS (not sure if that’s a function any have but it seems funny to say) to make all those ideal changes?
 
Yaaaa, I don’t think that’s gonna happen? So, no telemetry? I don’t MIND.
 
 
Posted on Leave a comment

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR with Upgrades

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR with Upgrades by BikeCo.com

Even after being in the industry for a long time, #newbikeday is still fun… Enjoy some detail shots of my personal bike a 2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR with some spec changes. Read on for more info on why these spec changes were, or in some cases weren’t on my list.

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon Detail Photos

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon Custom Build

Spec’ing My Bike, for Me….

We take a lot of pride in treating all of our clients projects like they are our own. But, here’s how I literally treat my own. Where I put the emphasis to allow me the most performance for every dollar in my budget.

So were did I start?

Travel and Size.

Comparing Mondraker FOXY and Yeti SB130 Geometry

Mondraker Forward Geometry

The Mondraker Forward Geometry was ahead of it’s time for sure. Now, since then all the top tier brands have come to the plate with the longer, lower, slacker updates.

At 6’1″ and a long inseam as well as long arm length (or short torso depending on how you wanna look at it I suppose) I have been kind of between the L and XL in a variety of brands.

To better understand the geometry I used BikeCo’s Interactive Geo Comparison (handy eh?)

I could quickly compare the travel, headtube angle, chainstay, bottom bracket, trail and then sizing specifics like Reach, Stack and Wheelbase.

The Large FOXY is a bit bigger bike in both travel – but not so much that I felt I was jumping way out of category – and geo sizing.

The two notable differences that jumped out at me where wheelbase and headtube/trail. 23mm longer wheelbase seemed like, oh, well, oh my right? But, then a quick glance at the math and conversion – it’s about 2% or  about 7/8 of an inch longer. Not a big deal to me. The slacker headtube angle increased the trail measurement a bit, but again when you look at percentage it’s not that big of a change. Plus, I believe there’s a geo kit available so maybe I would end up going to the 170mm fork and then steepening the headtube angle. I haven’t yet, but it’s fun to think about the “I might” right?

Anyhow – the reach was just long enough on the FOXY that I stayed in a Large even though I had been pondering an XL in the Yeti lineup as when I climb I find the “heel” of my palm sitting on my grips instead of my palms. I figured the slightly taller and longer front end would help me stay in a more confident position uphill. But, more to come on that in our Mondraker FOXY Extended First Ride!

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon rear profile image

Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR – the Spec that Stayed

You know, these top tier manufacturers put together a pretty respectable build these days. In fact, there were a lot of bits that not only was I “fine” with but I was actually pretty excited by. Let’s go over some of the parts that stayed and why I like them on my bike.

SRAM GX Drivetrain*

*well, most of it…

I gotta say: the X01 and XX1 stuff is a bit lighter, and in all likelihood lasts a bit longer. But damn, the modern GX bits work well. And even the GX cranks are pretty light and look refined these days.

Being a heavier, non-uphill biased (I’m looking for a good term there – like ya I appreciate the workout, but as long as I get up on my MTB I’m happy enough right?) anyway, I personally don’t notice a huge “in the moment” performance jump upgrading past the GX level on drivetrain. That’s to say when I jump on one of our guys with ti or carbon cranks neither the weight savings or added stiffness really add up to me. So the GX level cranks, shifter and derailleur give me good performance and I can put a few bucks into other areas of my build that I will notice the performance.

I spec’d an AbsoluteBlack 32t Oval chainring – it’s the first time I’ve had an oval for more than a couple rides so I’m interested to see what I’ll think of it (again, keep an eye out for the upcoming Extended First Ride!). I did the gold KMC X-12 chain for a pretty specific reason too. (I would have happily done an XX1 Gold too, but availability was an issue) Anyhow for those who know me I’m not a big bling person. But, again those who know me or follow our posts know the gold represents the Children’s Cancer Awareness and my daughter is beating infantile fibrosarcoma. So, I wanted some gold to remind me of where we’ve been and where we’re going.

When this drivetrain wears I would look at possibly an X01 cassette – but the modern 12sp SRAM stuff seems to just last and last and last (keep it relatively clean and lubed). My previous bike I had for seasons with so little drivetrain maintenance it was mind-blowing.

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR Custom Build

DT Swiss Wheels

This is an area that may or may not get upgraded the next time I have some $ burning a hole in my pocket. But for now I’m going to ride the stock wheels.

What I love: 30mm internals give a great tire profile. 36t ratchet is installed (18t feels clunky to me and the 50 something tooth one can be delicate if you pedal, shall we say, not smooth maybe?)

What I’m kind of hmmm about: small diameter flanges paired with 28h drilling. Big guys need big strong stuff right? Maybe. I dunno maybe that’s a compensating concept, we’ll see. I’ve run 28h DT before, but on the larger flange diameter hubs. Potential upside is that this wheel likely will have good side load compliance adding grip at high lean angles at speed.

Maxxis Tires

DHF EXO+ front and DHR II EXO+ rear. What’s not to love? It’s like I picked them out for myself. 3C MaxxTerra front and rear balance wear and grip well.

I buy Maxxis tires as they last the longest and provide the most consistent performance throughout their life. Why mess with saving less than the price of a good lunch when your tires literally are where the rubber meets the trail?

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon RR Ohlins RXF fork

Ohlins Suspension

This is actually a big, big leap for me. I’ve ridden exclusively BikeCo Pro Tuned FOX Suspension since, well, before we named it or offered it to clients…

After my test ride I knew this was a special chassis – but I also knew I HAD to have more compression support than the demo bike offered. Well, the Ohlins RXF 36 M2 features an adjustable air negative spring to fine tune ramp as well as low and high speed compression controls.

2022 Mondraker Foxy Ohlins RXF Fork

Now, the RXF is known as a very plush, linear package. So, as a heavier rider who likes a lot of front end support (typically even more than would be based on just weight – but as your ground speeds increase that suspension support improvement, even if it’s at the cost of a bit of front end grip tends to be the goal) I wanted to see if the RXF would have enough tuning range for me to dial it in the way I liked.

The FOXY’s Ohlins TTX air shock features high and low speed compression as well as volume spacing to fine tune support. I suspect that will be a pretty confident shock and doubt anything else will end up on this bike – especially if Joe keeps riding Ohlins and undoubtedly will look at narrowing the performance windows like our FOX Pro Tunes!

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR Ohlins TTX
2022 Mondraker Custom Cockpit

Part Swaps & Upgrades

OK onto the parts that went, which of course vary from a bit of vanity to straight nope, that won’t be on my bike…

Cockpit

I need my hands where I need my hands climbing or my low back isn’t going to be happy. Typically I’m looking at 35mm or 40mm rise bars to keep the stem as low as possible and the steer tube as short as possible. I run a 35mm diameter bar / stem combo. So for this bike I went with the RaceFace Turbine-R in 40mm with a 40mm rise TAG T1 Carbon bar.

The TAG T1 bar provided a bit wider, 800mm versus 780mm, larger diameter, 35mm vs 31.8mm and taller rise, 40mm vs 25mm. The Tag T1 also features the OvalTech design which creates a more sophisticated riding bar by varying the wall thickness for better vibration damping. You can see some of the details of the Tag T1 Carbon here.

The FOXY features super clean internal routing through the headset assembly. The stock build has some “teardrop” shaped spacers which look kind of cool. But, I put a front kid seat on my bike and prefer metal spacers. So I filed off the lip and made the standard spacers fit. I don’t foresee issues with this, but the kid seat mount is the reason you see it.

Ergon GE1 Grips. Well, RIP to the PadLoc WTB grips for now! After about 5 years of them change was of course terrifying hahaha… I like the Ergon grips having a bit more damping on the edge of the grip to minimize trail feedback. I also ride grips that don’t have “flared” ends as I tend to ride with my hands slightly over the edge of the trip for whatever reason. I kept the bars a bit wider to see if that negates this habit – but we’ll see. Flared end grips dig in if you ride over the edge which compromises some grip and tends to cause major pain.

2022 Mondraker FOXY with Wolf Tooth and Magura

Wolf Tooth Light Action seatpost remote. I prefer the lower pressure required by the slightly longer throw. I also appreciate the robust construction and attention to detail in the design giving it a lot of mounting options. Speaking of which, part of me wants to use the Magura specific mount, however, having the remote on its own mount allows more fine tuned placement for ergonomics.

BRAKES. Capitalized.

Honestly, brakes and tires are probably the most notable personality bits on your build. Get em right and you’re stoked. Not right, well, it’s not right.

I run Magura as they have the best combination of total power (similar to Shimano’s power) with great modulation (like Hope). Also, Magura offers brakes across a variety of budgets. Going with the MT5 saved me notably money which allowed me to redistribute the budget into areas for maybe a little bit of gold bling for my kiddo or to focus on performance parts.

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR with Magura MT5 Brakes

The Magura MT7 and MT5 are the most popular brakes in the lineup. They have some slight differences in the master cylinder shape however the major differences are in the lever and lever options.

Believe it or not I prefer the MT5’s longer “2-finger” lever, run inboard to accommodate 1 finger braking of course. Like the longer Light Action Wolf Tooth the increased length means it takes a bit more pull to get through the full stroke. This means for each mm of travel you get a more precise feel on the brake application.

Riders looking for more snap onto the power will look at the 1 finger Magura options. Riders looking for the ultimate adjust-ability will run the MT7 with the HC3 lever. Which, is awesome too… You can shop the best brakes in MTB from Magura and Shimano here.

2022 Mondraker FOXY with Magura MT Brakes

Our staff will tell you I stared and stared and stared and tried to make myself OK with keeping my red Chris King handbuilt wheels on this build. But, when I pulled the pucks out of the Magura calipers and saw this clean, murdered out look I knew it had to be black hubs… Even if Ian kept trying to find ways to make the red “work…”

2022 Mondraker Foxy Top Tube with Ergon Saddle

Seating

If you find a saddle you like why change? I ride Ergon saddles. They work. They’re comfortable. I don’t have to think about them. Perfect. I tend to run the CrMoly versions which can save you a few $ to allocate into different areas.

Liiiiiike, the seatpost. Honestly pretty close to pure vanity here. Swapped the all black 175mm OnOff Pija dropper for an all black 175mm FOX Transfer Performance. Maybe I was nervous not having any FOX on my bike? I do ABSOLUTELY love the revised saddle mounting for the FOX Transfer. Hardware is simple and brilliant. So, going with that as an upgrade reason. Wanted the easier adjust-ability and confidence I wouldn’t destroy as many bolts? Are you buying that? Maybe? OK, but it wasn’t ALL vanity…

 

OK – so there’s the starting spec on my 2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon. I’ve got a few rides into it and am putting together a FOXY Extended First Ride Review that I will link to as soon as its wrapped up!

Shopping 2022 Mondraker MTB or eMTB? Work with the very best here at BikeCo.com to get the best attention to your spec, setup tune and after sales service.

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon with Ohlins

Learn more about the Mondraker FOXY’s on trail performance – check out Extended First Ride a Mondraker FOXY Carbon Review!

Posted on Leave a comment

Thoughts on the 2022 Mondraker FOXY First Ride

2022 Mondraker FOXY First Ride

With the Mondraker Demo Fleet here at BikeCo.com for a week I had an opportunity to grab one of the 2022 Mondraker FOXY demos for a morning to help better define some of the details that set this bike apart. Here are my thoughts on the 2022 Mondraker FOXY First ride!

spoiler alert… pulled the trigger on a FOXY Carbon RR with some upgrades… Learn about how I spec’d My Bike for Me (link at bottom as well)

I hope you enjoy the video with both my real time thoughts on the 2022 Mondrakers as well as some concepts to review on demoing not only the Mondraker but really any MTB. (Click to see part 1, “What to Look for in a MTB Demo” video)

With the modern economy demo fleets aren’t necessarily full of each size and each model you’re looking for. So, its more important than ever to be able to work and define whether you’re noting the Frame / Suspension Design, the Spec (Components) or the Setup. All three are critical in dialing in YOUR dream bike, however, the reality on a quickly setup demo you’re going to have some accommodations to be aware of.

This Mondraker FOXY was a very poignant illustration of that. With all of the carbon bikes allocated to dealers (like BikeCo.com!) the demo fleet is made up of more entry level aluminum bikes.

This made it more important than ever to be able to understand what performance attributes would be due to Zero Suspension Design and Forward Geometry, which are shared with the FOXY Carbon R while being able to decipher what influence the aluminum construction and more cost-conscious spec had on my demo ride.

So what did I find?

Mondraker ZERO Suspension

My Mondraker FOXY First Ride made one thing really clear: Zero Suspension is notably compliant and competent. The Mondraker FOXY rides well planted and is confident in fast direction changes. The Mondraker suspension also is exceptional putting power to the rear tire. The planted feel minimizes rear wheel slip under power even in less than idea climbing conditions.

How was I able to determine this? Just beyond amazing demo? Ya, not exactly…

Well, it might seem somewhat counter intuitive to be really impressed with a design when the ride experience was kind of just above so/so right? Not when you can break apart the bike design, spec and setup.

The FOXY demo had FOX Performance DPS rear shock and FOX Performance GRIP 36 fork. Both of these are quality bits, but neither has the external compression controls of the FOX Factory or Ohlin’s products to help provide more rider support quickly. Also, demo bikes are done to accommodate the widest range of riders. Well, many riders, especially lighter ones or riders with slower ground speeds, prefer less ramp rate so the suspension tends to have fewer volume spacers than you may run.

In short, I knew the suspension dampers were going to be somewhat overwhelmed – I tried to make up for some of this with a bit more aggressive air pressure but the mid-stroke of both fork and rear shock were going to be slightly lacking. Now, if the bike was mine could I get that dialed in over a few rides? Ya, with volume spacers and PSI variants you could get it close. With Pro Tune suspension you could get it even closer with size and speed based tuning in the circuit. But back to the FOXY.

The Mondraker Zero Suspension was exceptionally confident even with dampers that I knew were being overworked. How did this manifest on trail? Well, the bike didn’t squat into corners. In fact, even with a relatively soft mid-stroke in the rear shock the bike felt like it stood tall heading into turns.

Now, a little bit of that would be because the fork was being overwhelmed and allowing the weight to shift forward, but not all of it.

The FOXY was sure-footed and competent even with my body weight being tossed around a bit to make up for the lack of front end support. Impressively the bike was quick to change directions in both high speed “S’s” as well as medium or lower speed bermed switchbacks.

The demo bike was setup at 160mm with a 66 degree headtube angle. Personally I would be setting it p with a 170mm fork, not so much for the additional travel but to slacken the headtube, increase the trail measurement and raise the front end up just a bit.

This combined with a personalized cockpit (the demo bike even with full spacers underneath the stem was still a bit low for me) would have dialed in the front end and allowed the rear end to perform even better.

FOXY Forward Geometry

The Forward Geometry is what we expect in modern MTB geo. The Large Mondraker fit very similar to my current Large Yeti SB130LR.

Climbing you’re placed in a comfortable, powerful position allowing you to attack technical ascents. In fact, for a 150mm rear bike I was blown away with how well it climbed. The energy you invest pedaling can be felt in the acceleration.

Descending riders find a confident position able to control the front and rear wheel in a position without extreme body English movements.

MTB Demo Bike Checklist: 3 Lists of 3

I often tell riders to try to avoid coming back from a demo with a “I loved it” or “I didn’t love it” attitude.

Its tough to have all the bits line up to totally fall in love with a bike on a short demo. It’s not too hard to decide you’re not into the right bike if you don’t break apart what was based on bike design, bike category, spec or setup.

Being able to work with a resource to help define this will go a long way to understanding if you’re on the right bike with the wrong bits, or if you’re in the wrong category of bike (honestly the FOXY is probably a little bigger than I would ride – I’d probably lean into a slightly burly built RAZE – or maybe a faster spec’d FOXY… hmmm now I’ll have to go back and look again!)

So here’s my 3 lists of 3. 3 things I liked, 3 things I was neutral about and 3 things I would change if it was mine:

3 Things I Liked

Suspension had very consistent, confident, planted feel yet with power the bike was incredibly efficient. Felt like it was shorter rear travel than it is while climbing, found traction even in challenging conditions. Felt appropriate acceleration for increases in energy output.

Bike stayed behaved even when pushed past fork’s ramp or compression – that’s to say when I got in some “oh boy” moments and undoubtably was throwing my body around the bike didn’t spit me out but stayed competent and neutral.

Bike had good support in rear into corners, which must have been mechanical design as the shock was under ramped and didn’t have finite low speed compression controls.

3 things I’m Neutral About (I only did 2)

Geometry felt right for pedaling. Felt like I expected that size bike to feel. Didn’t feel a way off from my Yeti’s fit. (check dimensions)

Wheel and tire spec was as expected on a bike of this category. Not my ideal but worked fine.

3 Things I Would Change

Brakes. Magura or Hope for improved modulation and confident power. I’ve run both over the years with excellent results.

Suspension. Performance Suspension on the demo Foxy lacked the compression controls for fine tuning the feel. Combined with a much more linear feel due to fewer volume spacers than I would run had the bike diving more than I would have liked to see, but it 100% felt like it could be tuned out with volume spacers in Performance Suspension and volume spacers and compression settings in Ohlins of FOX Factory Suspension. I would likely end up with the Ohlins’ spec’d on the FOXY Carbon R for this bike, or a Factory Float X and Factory 36 if I went with a Raze.

Cockpit: Hands were a bit low on test bike (bars sat taller than Yeti next to it, but BB difference probably made back up for that). Getting your hands in the right place is important for finite bike feel.

In the market for #thebestinMTB? Work with the experts at BikeCo.com to get dialed in on the best bikes, with the best suspension designs, spec for your budget and setup to your needs.

See you on the trails! Nate at BikeCo.com

 

Shop In-Stock Mondraker Bikes here at BikeCo.com!

 

Return to Top of Page

22 Mondraker FOXY First Ride Demo
6-17 2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR with Upgrades Profile

Learned something about the 2022 Mondraker FOXY from this demo write up? Well see how I put together my personal FOXY Carbon after riding the aluminum demo…

Posted on Leave a comment

2022 Mondraker RAZE Carbon RR Complete

2022 Mondraker Raze Carbon RR In-Stock

How mean are these lines?! The 2022 Mondraker RAZE Carbon RR design balances weight and strength while taking advantage of carbon’s unique properties to give it compliance where it needs it and stiffness where required. Oh, and it looks like it’s tearing down trail while just standing still…

2022 Mondraker Raze 130mm of Travel with Zero Suspension

The Raze features 130mm of rear travel with Mondraker’s Zero Suspension design. Zero Suspension is designed to separate braking & pedaling forces from the suspension stroke. This produces a bike with a very compliant feel and no pedal feedback even deep in the stroke.

The FOX DPS rear shock comes stock, however a lot of riders are gravitating to the more robust Float X upgrade from BikeCo.com as well.

Adding to the compliance of the design both upper and lower mounts of the shock “float” on suspension linkage rather than being fixed to the forward triangle.

2022 Mondraker Raze Zero Suspension CarbonMonoBlock Link

The CarbonMonoBlock linkage is another area Mondraker has been able to balance weight and stiffness to optimize the bike’s performance.

With the trunnion mounted shock’s wider upper mounting points the CarbonMonoBlock has additional leverage to resist twisting forces as well as providing a more compact suspension packaging on the Raze Carbon.

2022 Mondraker Raze Carbon RR Headtube

The 2022 Mondraker lineup has a unique design feature across most models: the Top Tube / Down Tube / Head Tube “X”.

The deep oval shape of the Raze frame is designed to shave weight while giving the bike a bit more compliance through the frame design.

2022 Mondraker Bikes In-Stock at BikeCo.com

One of the aspects that adds to the ultra clean lines on the Raze is the way the cable routing enters through the headset riser.

2022 Mondraker Raze Carbon RR Complete

Mondraker RAZE Carbon RR Build Spec


Frame:
Raze 29 Stealth Air full Carbon, Zero Suspension System, 130mm travel, Forward Geometry, Carbon Monoblock upper link, Boost 12x148mm rear axle, tapered head tube, 73mm BSA bottom bracket, dedicated 1x drivetrain design, HHG internal cable routing, Enduro MAX sealed bearings, shock mudguard, ISCG 05, custom frame protectors.

Sizes : Rider Size CM
Small  ~ 163 – 170
Medium ~ 167 – 178
Large ~ 175 – 188
X-Large ~ 185 – 198

Rear shock:
Fox Float DPS Factory Kashima evol LV, 205×57.5mm.
Settings: Compression 3 positions lever, low-speed compression, low-speed rebound, air preload.

Fork:
Fox 36 29 Float GRIP2 Factory Kashima, 150mm, tapered steerer tube, Boost 15x110mm axle, 44mm offset.
Settings: 3 positions with micro adjust compression, low-speed rebound, air preload

Headset: Acros custom for 1-1/2″ head tube, angular contact bearings 40x52x7, Internal cable routing

Stem: Onoff Krypton FG 30mm, CNC, 31.8mm

Handlebar: Onoff Kripton Carbon 1.0, rise: 25mm, width: 800mm, 9º backsweep, 5º upsweep, 31.8mm

Grips: Onoff Diamond, 1lock-on, 135mm

Seatpost: Fox Transfer Factory Kashima internal, diameter 31.6mm
S size: 363.5x125mm, M size: 418.3x150mm, L/XL size: 475.1x175mm

Saddle: Fizik Antares R7

Brakes: SRAM G2 RS, 4-piston. Tool-free reach and contact point adjust, Steel-backed organic pads

Rotors: Front, Centerline 180mm 6 bolt. Rear, Centerline 180mm 6 bolt.

Wheels:

Front hub: DT 350, Boost 15x110mm, IS 6 bolt
Rear hub: DT 350, Boost 12x148mm, 36T SL Ratchet system, IS 6 bolts, XD freehub

Rims: DT Swiss EX1700 Spline 29,
30mm internal width, welded aluminum, tubeless ready, 28 spokes

Spokes: DT Competition, straightpull

 

Front tire: Maxxis Dissector 29×2.4 WT, tubeless ready, 3C MAXX TERRA compound, EXO+ protection, 120TPI,

Rear tire: Maxxis Aggressor 29×2.3, tubeless ready, dual compound, Exo protection, 60TPI,

 

Crankset: SRAM X1 Carbon Eagle, Boost, DUB axle, Direct mount chain ring
S/M size: 170mm, L/XL size: 175mm

Ring: 32T, CNC-machined alloy, X-SYNC 2

Bottom bracket: SRAM DUB BSA, 73mm

Chain: SRAM GX Eagle, 12s

Derailleur: SRAM XO1 Eagle

Shift lever: SRAM Trigger GX Eagle

Casette: SRAM XG-1275, 10-52T, 12s

Derailleur hanger: SRAM UDH

Weight from Mondraker’s site: 12.5 kg

Interested in the Mondraker Raze’s larger sibling the Foxy? Check out a handful of pics of a custom Mondraker Foxy Build here

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon Custom Build
Posted on Leave a comment

Ibis Ripmo XT Build with Upgrades

Ibis Ripmo XT Build with Upgrades

Enjoy some shots of this Ibis Ripmo with updates. BikeCo has you covered across the board with the best in MTB from Ibis, Mondraker and Yeti.

Cockpit Setup on Ibis Ripmo

Shimano and Magura brakes are the go-to for a vast majority of riders. Shimano have a bit more “instant” bite while the Magura offers more modulation. Don’t know what’s right for you? Chat with our team about your preferences and we can get you dialed in.

FOX Pro Tune forks by BikeCo.com

Custom suspension tuning is available on FOX forks and rear shocks. BikeCo’s proprietary Pro Tune services narrow the performance window of stock product to allow more finite controls and adjustment per rider. Size, ground speed, terrain and aggression help us get your suspension right in the sweet spot for you.

Shimano XT Build on Ibis Ripmo

Whether you’re shopping Shimano, like this XT build, or SRAM Ibis has a factory build for you. And BikeCo has all the parts to dial in your build. From your favorite brakes, tires or custom wheels we have you covered.

Industry Nine Stem with OneUp Components Carbon Handlebar

The most popular handlebar right now is the OneUp Components Carbon Handlebar. Designed to provide more small bump compliance without becoming “soft”. Shop the OneUp bar here and learn more about the details that set this bar apart.

Ibis Ripmo XT Build with Upgrades

In the market? Whether you’re looking for an Ibis Factory Complete, a build with some upgrades or a custom spec banger BikeCo.com is here to dial you in. Shop in-stock and in-bound Ibis, Mondraker and Yeti bikes from BikeCo.com!

Posted on Leave a comment

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR with Upgrades!

2022 Mondraker FOXY Carbon Custom Build

With the post-pandemic marketplace shifting a bit we’re seeing clients that would tend to go full custom now picking and choosing based on availability and then updating spec to their favorite bits. This 2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR with upgrades is a great example of that.

Typically there are two ways that riders utilize to get the perfect spec. BIkeCo will provide credit for the stock components which is a very popular way to do it for an upgrade here or there. The other way is to provide riders the components for them to resell on the take-off market or, in the case of this Foxy Carbon to rebuild a previous bike for sale.

The drivetrain including Cane Creek e-Wings titanium cranks, SRAM AXS wireless system and Hope brakes were all from a previous build and the client moved them onto the new Mondraker.

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon Front Triangle Detail

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon

Mondraker puts a lot of resources into putting out a well designed frame which takes advantage of the top tier carbon fiber spec and actual build quality. Not only is this look sleek and unique the design maximizes the stress flow and strength properties of carbon fiber to utilize a balance of rigidity and compliance which adds a big factor to the Mondraker trail feel. Oh, did we mention the frame design and technology produce a notably light product? Yup. That too!

In a world where many mountain bikes look the same the 2022 Foxy Carbon’s unique “X” behind the headtube quickly identifies the new Mondraker.

2022 Foxy Carbon Frame Detail forward X brace

Mondraker Zero Suspension

Mondraker’s Zero Suspension is designed to minimize chain growth allowing for your drivetrain to do its work, your brakes to do theirs while the suspension does it job.

Designed to be notably efficient even deep in the travel the Mondraker Zero Suspension is proven on race courses worldwide.

Foxy Carbon RR Rear Triangle Detail with AXS and Cane Creek eWings

As an enduro bike Mondraker knows you’re going to take this bike into fast, burly terrain and it’s ready.

The aggressive chain stay protector helps protect the beautiful finish of the Foxy Carbon as well as helps keep your bike quieter through the chunky stuff.

Mondraker Foxy Carbon Chain Stay Protector

Ohlins MTB Suspension

The 2022 Foxy Carbon RR features Ohlins suspension front and rear. As expected on a bike at this level riders will find easy tuning with a great range of adjustment on rebound, low and high speed compression.

A nice feature on the Foxy is a protective guard to minimize rock spray onto the Ohlins TTX 2 shock.

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR Ohlins TTX Rear Shock

Custom Wheels

At BikeCo.com we build a lot of custom wheels. A. LOT. This rider prefers the silent hubs and the Foxy features Onyx Racing hubs. I mention this in part because every time that I roll a bike with the Onyx hubs I’m always taken aback or worried something is wrong since I don’t hear the freehub! Similarly every time that I pull a bike with moto brakes off the rack for photos it almost inevitably hits me in the shins when I pull the wrong bike to stand it up!

Onyx Hubs on Mondraker Foxy Carbon RR

Custom Wheels

At BikeCo.com we build a lot of custom wheels. A. LOT. This rider prefers the silent hubs and the Foxy features Onyx Racing hubs. I mention this in part because every time that I roll a bike with the Onyx hubs I’m always taken aback or worried something is wrong since I don’t hear the freehub! Similarly every time that I pull a bike with moto brakes off the rack for photos it almost inevitably hits me in the shins when I pull the wrong bike to stand it up!

Other build highlights include the Hope brakes which set off the titanium Cane Creek eWing cranks really well. This bike has Ride Wrap frame protection in key spots in both gloss and matte to match the finish.

2022 Mondraker Foxy Carbon Custom Build

Foxy Carbon: 31 lbs

With Mondraker’s frame design and technology it’s typical to see the Foxy, Raze or Crafty come in lighter than many of the comparable travel chassis.

The Foxy Carbon is a bike that would be on the short list for riders looking at a Yeti SB150 or a 170mm front end Ibis Ripmo build. All three of these bikes are proven capable in EWS level enduro terrain. But, what makes these bikes somewhat unique is that all three are spirited enough to be a fun trail bike when you’re not out smashing the bigger terrain. The Foxy Carbon is a bike that would be confident and fun on your chairlift days but with a little less aggressive rear tire and possible another couple clicks of low speed compression on the rear shock is nimble enough to go out with your work buddies for the summer evening pedal.

In the market for a 2022 Mondraker? If you’re shopping a trail or enduro MTB you should be! Whether you’re looking at this Foxy or the smaller travel Raze, or the eMTB Crafty BikeCo.com has you covered.

Check out in-stock and in-bound Mondraker’s here and chat with our team about which bike and which bits are best for your build! (alliteration eh?)

Mondraker Foxy Carbon Top View

Want to check out the Mondraker Foxy’s slightly smaller travel sibling the Raze? Click here to view the Mondraker Raze Carbon RR Complete!

2022 Mondraker Raze Carbon RR In-Stock
Posted on Leave a comment

Increase Support & Improve MTB Small Bump Compliance

Products and Tips to Improve MTB Small Bump Compliance

As your riding progresses your settings and preferences are going to change. Faster, more aggressive riding puts different demands on your equipment and balancing your setup with these changes will help you improve your riding experience. You’re likely to find you need additional support from the suspension. This is typically done with increased compression or ramp rate which can compromise some of your small bump compliance. Let’s take a quick look at other components and techniques that can add some of your small bump compliance back as you ride faster.

 

Faster tends to be smoother

Imagine a boat going slowly riding up a series of waves. Up each face and down the back. Then the next. It has a certain “rock” to it right? Well if that boat is able to increase the speed it can decrease the vertical motion of “rock” by not dipping all the way down into each trough. Like “whoops” in moto – skipping across the top decreases the vertical motion. Same with your mountain bike.

Now, should you just skip out of control across everything? Nope. But momentum is often your friend.

Increase Support and Improve MTB Small Bump Compliance Cornering

Why You Need More Support

How does your setup need to change with that speed?

Well you’re going to need more support. If you’re running soft suspension it’s going to do a couple negative things.

First, it’s going to tend to “pack” and stay deeper in the travel then it needs to be. This will actually create a harsher ride as the PSI has increased while still being too soft for the next concern.

Burying the bike… Really a bummer and frankly can be kinda dangerous especially if the fork is too soft and buries itself into a hole or the front side of a rock you’re trying to roll past. Front end stuffs, bike slows way down or stops, your momentum keeps going and you’re a lawn dart. No fun.

So as your ground speed increases its important to give yourself that additional suspension support. While you might adjust sag a few percent most of this support is going to be through low and high speed compression as well as volume spacing to increase the air ramp rate and support.

Increase Support and Improve MTB Small Bump Compliance Support Image with proper compression

But, I Don’t Want A Bike That Chatters All The Time

No, you don’t want a bike that loses all of it’s small bump compliance.

And, sorry, but for just a second I’m getting on my soapbox: a lot of suspension talks about “small bump compliance” as the travel between full extension (you’re bike’s in the garage) and sag (with you sitting on it). This isn’t small bump compliance to me. This is droop. Sorry I’m a car guy and when the suspension goes away from me, or droops down – well that’s not what I consider absorbing a small bump. It’s falling away until the weight catches up. So, for this, Small Bump is referring to bumps that engage the suspension travel past the sag point in compression, ie you’re riding and hit a small bump and the suspension absorbs it…

OK, back to my point.

So you’ve had to make your suspension stiffer, or less compliant, in order to have it be able to “punch back” at the terrain without diving in and out of the travel. How do you keep your teeth from rattling out?

There’s a handful of places to look at that you can find small bump compliance outside of the suspension.

Rubber is a Damper

Many of the more “grippy” compounds actually are designed to incorporate additional damping. A lot of our racers will run the MaxxGrip front tire to get just even that bit more compliance since their suspension is so aggressive.

Tire sidewalls are playing a bigger and bigger role in fine tuning MTB riding compliance. Heavier sidewalls provide additional protection as well as damping through mass and material properties.

More aggressive sidewall technology provides additional mechanical support assisting the tire’s “air spring” to support your weight. This tends to allow riders to run a lower overall tire pressure providing better tire compliance and grip.

And yes, the air in your tire is a spring. And like your suspension it as it is compressed the pressures rise. The tire’s mass and sidewall properties effectively are the damper on this spring force. A heavier, stiffer sidewall is going to help slow the tire’s air spring better. This will help minimize harsh “run through” or even prevent or minimize rim strikes (which man, you can feel those in the hands!).

Another product that can help with compliance are CushCore tire inserts.

CushCore provide three unique modifications to a tires performance.

First, it’s a mechanical damper for the last bit of tire compression prior to the rim. Think of a jounce bumper in a shock: it’s a compressible item designed to absorb impact prior to it hitting a less compressible, and certainly less ideally compressible rim…

Second it works as a volume spacer in your tire. Similar to suspension adding volume spacers allows a lower starting PSI to more quickly ramp up to the proper supporting PSI.

Third and perhaps most notable and at the same time kind of the hardest to describe is how the CushCore’s contact point lowers the sidewalls leverage ratio in many conditions. That’s to say that by putting pressure on the sidewall, or maybe support is the better term, it shortens the available length of the sidewall which allows takes away some of the mechanical advantage the ground can apply to it. Think of waving a ruler holding onto the far edge, then holding in the middle. Lowering the leverage makes a big difference right?

Learn more about Maxxis tire compounds, sidewalls and tread patterns here

Magura MT7 HC MT7 and MT5 Levers Compared

Top to Bottom: Magura MT7 HC, Magura MT7 and Magura MT5 brake levers. Shop the Magura and Shimano brake lineup here.

Brakes, Braking and Slow is Fast

Stay with me on this one, it’ll make sense. Bigger brakes will help your small bump compliance. Well, bigger, more powerful brakes and a bit of technique.

You’ve probably seen it on trail – the rider heading into a chunky section who gets timid, grabs a handful of brakes, stuffs the suspension 1/3 down into the travel and then is, at best, jostled horribly across the terrain trying to regain control? So two things wrong there.

One, momentum is your friend like we mentioned earlier.

Two, especially with your fork, grabbing a bunch of brake OR staying on the brakes too late just stuffs the bike into it’s suspension. Instead of hitting the chunk at sag with say 80% of the travel left (and at the sag PSI) you’ve gone in at like half travel, cutting down both the amount of travel you have left as well as making the bike way more harsh as it enters chunk. No good!

Sort of like how when you corner there’s a point you need to be off the brakes and let the bike roll in (ya, you can trail brake to a point – but you’re not like smashing brakes while trail braking or braking through the corner) anyhow, so you ideally have a point that you need to get off the brakes and let the bike reset its rake and sag before you go blasting through chunk.

This allows you to take advantage of the more plush suspension further in the fork’s extension, have more travel left to absorb the terrain as well as resetting the headtube angle, and therefor trail measurements as well. All good stuff.

Handlebars, Grips, Gloves and Hands

So frankly, the two tips above are going to provide you the biggest jumps in small bump compliance as you up your compression settings. There are a few places that you can get a bit more feel, and every little bit does help.

Handlebars

Carbon fiber has a unique balance of stiffness while being able to slightly damp vibration input. Really that’s the beauty of carbon bars. Being a bit lighter is great too, particularly high up on a bike where center of gravity makes a big difference, but the real draw is the feel.

OneUp Components Carbon Handlebar Shape

Carbon also can be manufactured in a variety of shapes that would be really difficult in other materials. This allows two advantages. Weight saving and performance tuning. Removing material where it’s not needed such as the Tag T1 Carbon Bar with ovalized bar ends is an example of both.

The bar that probably takes the most advantage of this is the OneUp Components Carbon Handlebar. With it’s unique shape the OneUp bar is designed to improve small bump compliance by eliminating off-axis material in the rise transition.

Handlebar Width = Leverage Rate

Handlebar width is important to how your bike rides.

Obviously you need your hands in a comfortable position that allows you a power position to push the bar into corners and pull the bars over terrain. We’ve touched on that in other blogs over the years.

In regards of small bump compliance you’re looking at the leverage ratio of your bar’s design as well as your final bar width. As you narrow your bar you decrease the leverage ration which increases the bar’s stiffness.

We’ve actually seen handlebar manufacturers try to push a “one size fits all” on some stiffer bars because if you lower the leverage ratio they become like teeth rattling stiff. We don’t all need to run 800mm bars. (at 6’1” I run 785 as a point of reference)

If you’re trimming bars it’s worth a look how stiff the bars start out. If you’re trimming towards the minimum cut widths it might be worth looking at a less stiff bar to start.

Shop our favorite handlebars here!

Grips

Some riders are big fans of the grips with a slight rotation designed into them. We setup some clients on those if they want them – but – we don’t really ride those in the shop.

Personally, I don’t like the idea of the grip rotating and taking away some of the feel when I really clamp down on the handlebars. There’s also a part of me that doesn’t particularly like having more moving bits than needed on my setup.

Gripping

Now I’m not saying you death grip the bar. Far from it. Letting the bar slightly rattle in your hands helps minimize trail feedback. In fact one of the tips from my younger brother years ago on really long descents like San Juan Trail he would pick his spots and push his thumb into his middle finger and literally let the bar bounce in those circles. I never wrapped my head around that really – but he was doing 50 and 100 mile races and keeping your body feeling good was critical.

While we’re on how you grip the bar, it won’t change small bump compliance, but if your brakes or controls are out of position and require you to rock your hands “up” or “down” the trail feedback is much more likely to cause pain when you ride.

Similarly if you ride in gloves that are too big and “bunch” up in your grip position you can expect discomfort in your hands.

Gloves with large contact pads tend to create hand discomfort. Rather than minimizing trail feedback the extra movement thick contact pads either creates hot spots or perhaps has riders gripping a bit too much.

Wrapping It Up

Ok. Eighteen hundred words. That’s a bunch right? So to wrap it up in a quick paragraph:

Increase your compression and ramp as you ride faster to aid support at speed. Remember momentum is often your friend. Don’t slam on a handful of brakes into the terrain features and pack the suspension up. Run tires with appropriate support. Hold on right, not necessarily always tight. Should I have started with all of that and saved you the read? Hahaha… See you on the trails – Nate@BikeCo.com

 

Return to Top of Page

Posted on Leave a comment

Getting a Grip: Ahead of Time is the New Just in Time

Getting A Grip Ahead of Time is the new Just In Time

I need new grips. The grips I love are allegedly not available for a year.

But the economy is dead, never to work again, in anyway shape or form? If you read the headlines it’s shocking we’ve made it this far. Don’t worry, they’ll tell you where the cliff is. Right, right, right past that next automated ad they’ve put in front of you (ironically, selling you something right?)

Pandemic changed things. True.

So did the blue trucks blocking the streets in every neighborhood. (I don’t have an account and I don’t use it but that’s something for another channel.

So did some family in middle America that was busy pricing out the little guys so cliché Americans could go use free scooters to navigate a megastore with a jumbo ultra super barrel of sugar. Oh, and you can get greeted by someone who has a lifetime of stories and probably did some important stuff but needs whatever micro amount of money is available to say hi to some snot nosed gamer walking straight past them. But, at least we learned you can copyright bizarre taglines about mountain sports in areas notably devoid of mountains.

Point is: the economy is dynamic, constantly changing and involves navigation. It is affecting us that’s for sure. But is it destroying a way of life? That’s a stretch. If the previously mentioned general pains in the ass to commerce didn’t break it not being able to access every whim JIT probably isn’t gonna break the economy.

So Get A Grip?

Ya. I want to get some grips. Mine are worn out. I thought I had another set in my toolbox somewhere, but guess not after search.

I’m particular and I really do love the WTB Padloc grips, I’ve pushed them a bunch over the years and I might be one of the few who do love em (people are intimidated of chamfering their bars or whatever).

Well guess what: not the most popular item? Read another way, not the most profitable item? Production got backburned it looks like. Can’t blame WTB – consolidate SKUs and get the most sought after product in front of your users. Makes total sense. Good on them frankly.

But I’m glancing at my distributors and I’m seeing April 2023. And I would guess that’s a pretty soft date and could be pushed back, if they’re made again.

Options and Choices

Well, I’m not going to be able to nurse these grips for a year. So, guess I’m looking at other solutions eh?

I could go deep on the web search and locate them somewhere else. And I might. If I do I’ll be shopping product name and manufacturer part number.

The part number probably isn’t super super critical with these grips as they didn’t have multiple compounds or whatever – but on something like a specific tire you’re looking for? MAN, I would be damn sure it hit all the boxes. Cause ya, I love the Minion DHF 2.5 front tire. But I want it in the specific sidewall and TPI that I want. And some strange mega-store’s spec of it with the cheap sidewall or whatever is beyond unusable and a huge waste of my time and expectation.

I’m also going to be judging the credibility of the resource that lists product as “available” for the same reasons. I don’t feel like dealing with the wrong product, or a week later being told it’s not available (sometimes things aren’t available, but credible sites can tell you really quick, before you’re waiting thinking its’ on the way to then being told nope, no dice)

So, picking your retailer is getting to be as important as picking your product. Well that’s good for quality retailers! We’re stoked to work with you.

Other Options instead of a Rabbit Hole?

What if I don’t want to play chase the part number around? Well looks like I’m comparing other grips right?

Personally I’m looking at the larger diameter Ergon grips as well as a couple other options our guys have brought into the shop.

Ahead of Time is the new JIT

So what extras do I keep around the toolbox? Here’s a current look, fresh from looking for my grips I thought I had!

Extra derailleur cable. I keep these around more to save the drive if I need one (I don’t work on-site every day so if I need a cable I’m going to a local cruiser shop or whatever)

Few feet of derailleur housing. See above

Derailleur Hanger.

Brake Pads. 2 sets, so front and back if needed.

Brake Fluid. Not sure if this counts as an “extra” so much as a quick maintenance thing from lever bleeds.

Front tire (Minion DHF 2.5). I keep 1 tire around just in case too. If I lose a rear tire I tend to put my existing front tire to the rear and the fresh tire in the front.

Chain. I’m leaning into the idea of putting together a full drivetrain but have found other places to spend money lately and haven’t done it just yet. Reading that I know I’m going to regret it if I don’t put a cassette and ring in my toolbox. Wednesday I’m picking those up hahaha…

Learning the new Economy

You know, I try really hard not to be a typical consumer about everything – I work hard not to get into the “need it today” mode unless I really do (or I want to go on an errand or whatever and whoa, I’m at my favorite haunt and just happen to end up with some toy for myself hahaha).

But some bits, like parts to keep my bike on trail, that’s super important to me and that’s where Ahead of Time is the new plan – and you’ll find them in my toolbox. I’m not hording tons of em – just the one I need.

So I guess I’m getting a grip on the new economy. In fact, I’ll be getting a new grip on the modern times – gonna go with the Ergons this time.

See you on the trails – Nate@BikeCo.com