I'm 43, riding for about 20 years and have owned several FS bikes, the last being a Cannondale Gemini about 5 years ago. I've only just built up a GT Avalanche which I intend to take out on it's maiden ride this weekend at Llandegla. FS lets you go very quick downhill over virtually anything, trade off being if it goes Pete Tong it's going to hurt a lot more. HT winds that enthusiasm in a little and concentrates the mind on neater lines and the climbing is should be a little easier.
so, those that have ditched the FS bike and gone back to HT - how old are we ?
Not me, I'm a comfort subscriber. Back pain during races forced me off hardtails when I was 32 in the UK to a raceable 4" full susser, and now I'm 40 in Australia I've just added a trail 5" 29er full susser partly because it's more comfortable.
I do wonder though if a carbon 29er hardtail would be comfortable enough, but I'm not going to win any races any more so there's no point for me. The ground is harder and rockier where I ride now since emigrating, for example it can really knock it out of you when you have a crash, but the weather is mostly dry and I only see mud for a month at most each year.
Went HT two years ago. Started by building HT to go with FS. Ended up using FS for pootles with the girlfriend, so brought another HT frame and swaped all the parts across from FS.
Living in the Brecon Beacons most of my rides are longish XC, with occasional trail center.
Th group I ride with are on average 15 years younger than me. They reacon I'm quicker on the HT, up and down.
But main thing is I'm a lot happier and it just feels right for me.
interesting replies and kind of align to my own feelings. I enjoy my FS but ride the HT more often and feel more engaged on it. High speed and jumps are not my game at 47 and the HT does all I want of it, at perhaps a safer/more controlled rate.
Ex Roadie, I like my bike(s) rigid, light and fast. Never owned a FS, always been HT MTBs/29erSS though I did look at a TallBoy last year to compliment my 29erSS but for some reason I've just not got that feeling for one (yet)
Next bike I change is my Roadie for another super sexy light climbing machine.
Mid 40's if that makes any difference to anything.
Nice to see the ages being posted on here, 47, always ridden hardtail. However with the ageing process lower back/ knees may consider full sus at some point in future.
But secretly would like to be fully hard core, 29er totally rigid and of course s/s!
I've only been back riding about 3 years but I've only ever rode one FS which was a mates GT something and it felt weird.
I only potter so a HT is fine as I think a FS would make me do things I'm not capable of doing.
I'm 36 and never rode a bike from the age of 17 to 33
68 here. Went back to a HT last year with a Cotic Soul; but still ride a full suss as well. Sold the road bike last year to fund the Soul.
47 here went to FS when I was 30, due to back injury, went to hardtail again in form of a scandal 29er last year, back to full suss as soon as consultants allow me to ride............simply a fact of injury.
28, the FS bikes I had allowed a solid progression in my riding but I now ride better than before on the same trails with my Blue Pig X. I don't wallop through stuff so much now and and land more quietly.
I think being back on a HT has refined the progress I made on the FS, as you can't get away with as much. A big part of this for me is improved lower body technique and learning to have more control of weight shifting on/into the bike.
I'm 28, gave up the full suss last year. Mainly as I realised that all the trails I was riding were more fun on the 456 than the Trance. I do like riding bouncy bikes, but don't think I'd get another unless I lived somewhere close to trails that warranted one.
Went from a full-sus (Spesh FSR)to a hardtail (Pace RC305) then back to a full-sus (Turner 5 spot and Superlight).
Other than smooth climbs I just felt no advantage to the hardtail, at trail centres it felt like I was being shaken to pieces on the hardtail if I tried to ride at the same speed. On longer all day rides I missed the comfort of the full-sus.
It was good on shorter rides from my back door which were a mix of tarmac, path and trail but these are also good on my Superlight
I guess I like the easy speed and safety net of a full sus above the involvement of a hardtail
BUT FS is involving......
Mid life crisis 40 year old .....Tinkered with both since 1998.....
Now using an ageing Meta 5 for the odd down stuff / off stuff ride. And have been SSing various ridid one ones since 2004 most of the time.
THINKING ABOUT - A HT WITH GEARS.......or new knees.
45, been riding MTB for 25 years
went from rigid to FS to HT to 29er short travel FS and am currently very content with my riding apart from ho long things take to heal now!
Got rid of my Alpine 160 and replaced it with a Ragley Blue Pig. Im 26. My riding has advanced on the HT as I started to ride the Pig the same as I would with my Alpine.. soon to realise I had to be far more picky over lines etc instead of just ploughing down anthing. Now I'm used to the hardtail I can still keep up with the full sus boys on the downs and I actually prefer it! Certainly helps on the climbs aswell! Looking forward to getting back on to a full sus but for now (whilst my arse and arms can handle it) I'm more than happy on the hardtail!
I'm 42 and since building my hardtail 6 weeks ago I haven't ridden the FS once.
I'm sure I will get back on the FS but right now I love the feel of the hardtail. I knocked over a minute off a previous PB on a Strava trail only 8 minutes long on the hardtail last night in less than perfect conditions (gale force cross winds)!
I've gone back to spd's on the hardtail and it just feels like it's floating over the rough stuff.
48 and on Ss rigid 29er for the last 3 years- went out on the new to me Ss cx bike last night- blimey that's an eye opener on some rooty singletrack!
I last rode a full suss a couple of years ago , at 40.
Have also jumped on to the cx bandwaggon - not racing ,just riding,
which has me considering fully rigid on one of the hardtails.
41, have migrated from 5" full suss to rigid ss 29er in the last couple of years. Still got the full susser for the odd trail centre weekend but the hardtail is the default bike now. Only on long stretches of baked/frozen solid rutted mud does it ever occur to me that I really miss suspension.
36 ditched a cove hustler and went back to an mmmbop hardtail 3 years ago vastly improved riding skills but have just got a new full suspension orange 5 as the jumps where killing my ankles on the hard tail
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