crashtestdougie - you CAN buy an anodized Nicolai Helius AM or FR for less than you can a Nomad.
Any Santa Cruz owners out there? - advice/opinion sought
Could I suggest a titus some great prices out there, i have a supermoto only one ride old but impressed, the elgaupo was I think Ben Howarths selected bike seen them hardly used for 600.
Hecklers are good but horst links better
ps look at knollys
Where are these bargain Nicolais to be had then?!
Interesting thread, always fancied a Blur 4x myself, pity they were discontinued.
And auricgoldfinger do I understand you correctly, you had a Nomad and NEVER fell off it?! Unless you had it for a week surely no falls means no balls?!
Hecklers are luuurvely! well mine is anyway....
i was thinking after a day at stainburn i'd quite like some longer travel forks with a through axle, maybe a lyrik or pike for the big squishy stuff. It does very well as it is though so until i win the lottery a shiny new lyrik is out of the question! climbs like a dream. Point is, you can build a heckler up HOWEVER you want.
Shandy I had the old Nomad for well over a year (a long time for me). The only time I fell of it, despite my best efforts, was on greasy tarmac on a bend! I came plenty close numerous times (most memorably at Ae and in the Lakes) but the trusty Nomad never chucked me off. I would almost agree with WMB the other month - it is uncrashable.
Nicolai's are no bargain, but check the cost of the latest anodised Nomad with a DHX Air and you'll see what TLR means. It seems to bother the Yanks more this, but the Nomad is made in Taiwan now, and some feel that is a lot of coin for a something fabricated en masse in the Far East (go and have a read through some of the threads on MTBR). The owner of my LBS was telling me that he's had a lot of folk asking about the new Nomads and Blurs but most aren't following through and buying. They are going for the cheaper Hecklers instead.
A short anecdote about Santa Cruz.
I got my first Heckler in 98. In September I went to California on a riding holiday. During that trip I got play in the rear shock bush. Not knowing what the cause was at the time and passing through Santa Cruz I looked in the phone book and got the address for the factory. My friend and I cycled round to find a small unit opposite a place with a Bontrager sign. Well the guys there changed the bush in no time while we chatted about the local riding. Dead helpful and dead friendly.
All in, a nice experience and perhaps part of the reason I have stuck with Santa Cruz.
Personally I'd say Santa Cruz are better designed than the Nicolai's but not necessarily built better. However proper design does matter. Nicolai win in terms of very good and long warranty.
If I were in your position I'd get the heckler with a coil dhx shock and get it push tuned.
Superior in every way to a Santa Cruz. Properly welded, properly finished, properly thought out.
nothing wrong with santa cruz.
I've never understood the anti-SC brigade on here - talking to folk on the trails I've never heard anything but praise from owners, inc exes.
I bought a S/Light a few years ago. Was also considering an Orange 5, finally made my mind up after speaking to both factories about their products. O couldn't be a*sed, SC couldn't have been friendlier.
I've ridden mates' Hecklers, would love one meself. As somebody else pointed out you can build it up lightish or for biggger stuff - your choice, from what I've seen they do it all very, very well. Try one...........
I had a Nicolai. Nice bike, well built but a nice weld doesn't guarantee a great bike. It was too short for me, too high and too much travel. Replacing bearings at 85 quid a pop annoyed me. Changed it for a Superlight with a simple single pivot and haven't looked back.
Horses for courses and all that.
lecht are you still running that awesome looking grey/black Nicolai? Saw it in another website from August 08 - looked fantastic, but when I priced them up yesterday, with the build I wanted, they were nearer 4k than 3, whereas the Heckler build I'd go for is around 3k, so there is a lot of difference in price.
Actually there is a prebuilt Heckler for 2.4k iirc (from santa-cruz.co.uk) but tbh for the Â£500 difference, it wasn't quite what I wanted (not anodised/not DHX/not Pike.
Nah, I think it's the SC Heckler black anodised, DHX/Pike/x9s/Juicy 7s for me - just gotta get saving now!!!
Many, many thanks all for the input.
CTD. Be aware that RS seem to have stopped making air Pikes so you will have to go coil, or go to Revs - check the colour as you want black lowers with the ano black bike.
Assume you are using one of the build kits through your local LBS? Much cheaper that sourcing separate components. Also if you talk to them nicely they should swap out a few bits for you if you need, like rims, tyres, brakes etc as they can put the originals into stock. SC supply the build kits to the LBS as a bag of bits, not as a built bike
TBH I'd always go for coils anyway - got rev coils on both my other bikes and I love the plushness of themgood tips on the build kits - I'd def. go for one of them as it makes sense, definitely.
I kind of got carried away with the Chromag, and although the frame was Â£700, I ended up building it for Â£2,800, so I'm really aware of the dangers of speccing everything myself!!!
Sorry just seen the response - my nomad is a mk1. BB seems fine, not particularly high - I used to have a enduro whihc had a low one, and it feels not much difference. Never had any pedal strikes either.
it's all about taste isn't TLR? I mean the best bike is always the one you own. I had a balst on a Nicolai and thought it didn't ride too well- i just felt too tall, but I suppose after time you would get used to it. I think Nicolais look terrible though- like a childs meccano set.
anyways, back to the original point. I had 03 Heckler and now have a 08 Nomad. Heckler can be built into quite a light weight trail bike, although I didn't like the new Heckler when I had a test ride as the rear triangle felt too wide and kept rubbing my calves. Had my Nomad for almost 1.5 yrs and wouldn't change it for anything on the market just now.
I do agree they are expensive, but I think any mountain bikes over 1k are expensive.
Both my SC were built in America, although it doesn't really bother me whether a Mexican, caucausian or Asian welded it.
hope this works - first go on the new forum
I love my Blur 4X but I would be the first to admit that the finish isn't great and the paint is awful (scratches just looking at it)
Despite all the gratitous slagging by TLR I reckon that SBC know a thing or two about building bikes THAT RIDE WELL. At the end of the day the welds are there to hold the tubes together and SB tend not to snap in use.
As an exercise in precision engineering the Nicolais are hard to beat however, like Lobby I tested and came away pretty disappointed.
Draw up a short list and go ride them, then make up your mind...
In my limited rides on Nicolais, I have found them to feel top heavy (high COG) and very sluggish certainly not suited to twisty ST and the DH bike I rode was awful! yes they are very well put together - so what?
I have had 2 Superlights,a Heckler, a 06 Nomad and I am now just about to start riding my new 09 Nomad.
So far ALL of the SC bikes have proved to be completely reliable and excellent at their specific jobs, you just need to pick the right one for your type of riding and get on with it, there has been a lot of input from riders at all levels put into the design/manufacture of these frames and you can certainly tell that when you ride one.
Loving my superlight. Simple single pivot suspension (that works).. I think heckler= burly, freeride superlight, xc.
Put the rev uturns on mine and love the option of dialling out to 125/130
"overpriced californian designed tat"
Have a BLT as my XC bike, very nice, 2 years old, same set of bearings all over and i jet-wash the crap out of it.
great bike for the Peaks, goes down Stannage Edge fast enough to worry the DH boys.
Over priced tat. I wouldnt bother...
shock is in the wrong place. get an Ellsworth Truth instead
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