Factors of the Best E-Bike Suspension
Suspension matters. OK, kind of obvious right? But let’s look at why your e-bike’s suspension design might be even more important than a pedal (or acoustic) option. The best e-bike suspension accounts for factors similar to a pedal option while adding some unique stresses as well.
There are as many suspension theories, and patents for them, and pretty much all market to be the be all end all right? Of course. But just like pedal bikes we can quickly narrow down the real deal from the fakers. Continue reading Factors of the Best E-Bike Suspension
More MTB Mullets – Comparing Travel, Headtube, Trail & Flop
An interesting question come across my email wondering about MTB Mullet setup. In particular headtube angles and performance. How did the headtube angle compare between the Yeti SB165 in a 27.5″ stock setup with a 180mm fork compared to the Mullet 29″ 170mm concept?
What started as a quick email reply of concept turned into a more thorough review and I thought with more questions on MTB mullets these days we could put it up on a post for everyone.
So, the disclaimers. I couldn’t find Yeti’s published SB165 Mullet geo so I build a model to review. These models aren’t gospel truth on geo, but having been in this game for a lot of years some of the geo’s you’ve seen published I wouldn’t take for gospel either. Point is, these numbers will give you an idea of the concept I wouldn’t bet the farm on precision four points behind the decimal…
Next disclaimer. It could be a thesis trying to explain how these changes directly modify performance so we’re not going there today. We’ll have some basic concept and comparison of how one change directly modifies a whole bunch of the handling.
OK here we go. Continue reading More MTB Mullets – Comparing Travel, Headtube, Trail & Flop
PreCharging a Suspension Pump – BikeCo Tips & Tricks
Let us show you how to precharge a suspension pump for the most accurate air suspension setup.
Many of our clients, and all of our racers, are looking to really dial in suspension. In order to accomplish this it is important to make minute adjustments to air pressure. This blog and video illustrate what’s happening in your air spring and why precharging a suspension pump is so important.
Continue reading PreCharging a Suspension Pump – BikeCo Tips & Tricks
MTB Bolt Checks – Simple but Critical To Your Safety
Consistent MTB Bolt Checks are critical to your bike’s reliability and safety. While components should be checked throughout their service life, it is particularly important to check new fittings. Stem, handlebar, grip and brake assemblies are especially important.
Why You Need to Bolt Check
Light weight, minimal contact and leverage.
With the exception of WTB’s Padloc grips, everything that attaches to your handlebar requires radial clamping force to keep it positioned radially (around the circle of the bar) and laterally (left and right).
If the fastener is appropriately tight the radial assembly produces more “bite” than the loads encountered and nothing moves.
So you torque it and it’s good forever? No. Nope. No.
In fact, you torque it – stress it – re-torque it – and then occasionally check it. Continue reading MTB Bolt Checks – Simple but Critical To Your Safety
180 vs 203mm Rotors
Power, Modulation, Heat Capacity and Personality. Let’s look at some differences between 180 vs 203mm rotors (7″ and 8″).
Increasing the radius of the rotor increases the brake’s leverage ratio.
Using Magura HC rotos as an example we measure about 12.7mm of “usable” rotor / pad interface. Picking a point of reference halfway in the usable interface the we come up with a 180mm (7″) rotor at 83.65mm versus the 203mm (8″) at 95.15mm. The change in available leverage around 12%.
Continue reading 180 vs 203mm Rotors
MTB Fit Concepts
Every couple years we see someone come out with the “ultimate in bike fit”. Complete with laser light show, measurements, formulas and reasons you should be in EXACTLY THIS position. The thing is, in MTB, does this kind of fit have any real value? I’m of the belief that lasers are for hair rock bands and dropping say $300, plus suggested components, to be told an optimum position for a sport with so many variables is a hard pill to swallow…
The laser light show fit originated on the skinny tire side of bikes. Substantially less variables at play in that world. The theory was that kinesiology produced the perfect balance of power and aerodynamics. How’d that work out? Depends. A couple years ago in one of the younger divisions of European road cycling there was a drug (banned at the Tour level) that essentially allowed these kids to stay down in an insane aero position for huge periods of time. Problem was they ended up tearing back muscles out… Anyhow. Another story for another day.
Does MTB bike fit matter? Absolutely. Should you work to dial it in? Certainly. Just keep that $300 for the laser light show fit in your pocket, learn some concepts and maybe buy a part or two from your favorite retailer. Continue reading MTB Fit Concepts
44mm vs 51mm Fork Offset
Many clients use our custom builders to quickly spec the parts they need for frame swap projects. That’s awesome. We’re glad to dial in everything from frame swaps, factory builds, semi to full custom bikes with our clients. We have had A LOT of clients ask about utilizing previous generation offset forks to their new bikes. Let’s take a look at the advantages of the lower offset forks, particularly the 29″ 44mm versus 51mm offset.
I guess let’s start at the end.
29″ bikes have reached an amazing level of performance. Modern 29’s pedal amazing while being much more behaved on the descends. We see smaller riders enjoying the current generation of big wheel offerings. Compare this with the days when Small 29’s weren’t even made because they scare riders out of the sport! Continue reading 44mm vs 51mm Fork Offset
Front End Support – Fork Air, Volume & Compression
Between our BikeCo Pro Tune services as well as working with some of the fastest racers in MTB we get a lot of questions regarding suspension tuning. Modern forks offer more ways than ever to dial in your ride. Getting the right front end support with fork air, volume and compression improves tracking, ride quality, dive, and how your bike performs in the chunk.
Recently BikeCo Pro Rider Cody Kelley was in town working with Joe Binatena on the 2019 Alchemy Arktos 29. It was an interesting opportunity to sit down and listen to Cody and Joe discuss setup. Continue reading Front End Support – Fork Air, Volume & Compression
150 vs.160mm Fork on Yeti SB130
Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades right? Well when it comes to mountain bike setup a few millimeters create notable differences. Let’s take a look at 150 vs. 160mm fork on Yeti SB130.
After a extended review of the factory Yeti SB130 X01 setup I built my own, with a bit different spec. This article reviews these setup changes and the shifts in trail personality. Before you stop reading thinking “I don’t ride that bike” many enduro style bikes tolerate the types of spec changes we’re going to look at.
By no means am I saying my spec is perfect or right for everyone. There are positives and negatives to it all. Work with a competent resource if you have questions on what’s appropriate! Continue reading 150 vs.160mm Fork on Yeti SB130
Rear Suspension Setup
Some quick reminders on rear suspension setup!
The Best Baseline
Measure the sag. The old days of eye balling (or using a finger versus a thumb) are gone. The introduction of Metric shocks created a huge variety of stokes making it more important to measure the sag in millimeters.
For instance, the Yeti SB150 has a 230x60mm shock however the exposed shaft is about 9% longer. This might not sound like much the difference between a perceived 33% sag at 20mm and the actual 37% sag at 22mm is notable in the pedal platform and descent performance. Continue reading Rear Suspension Setup