Since its launch in 2009, the Tallboy has been Santa Cruz Bikes’ best selling model so far. It set the bar on how a 100mm 29er bike could be made to pedal well, yet still feel fun and playful on the descents and in singletrack. Santa Cruz then added the 130mm Tallboy LT to that a couple of years ago and showed that a longer travel 29er could also work really well.
After four years, it was time to take the lessons learned from the Tallboy and Tallboy LT and re-vamp the Tallboy. It still features 100mm of travel front and rear, but there are several tweaks that have been made to it. The VPP suspension has been moved and reconfigured to give a better pedalling response – and also to allow Santa Cruz to offer a small size for the first time on the Tallboy.
Both the carbon and the aluminium Tallboys have been loved-up and both are the first to feature the new lower VPP link which has been designed with UK riders in mind. The whole link can be removed (and was, in front of our eyes) with a couple of Allen keys, without needing to remove cranks or even the back wheel. The bearings are sealed on the outside with a metal, rather than the usual rubber lip seal, which is then covered with a one-way grease cover. The link is designed to be filled with grease, which then passes through the un-sealed inner side of the bearing and then out of the metal and one-way seals to keep grease in and the water out…
The weight of the Large carbon frame is 4.9lbs (in matt black) so the bike has lost a little over the previous model. It’s also gained some invisible structural improvements. Interestingly the carbon shock link is gone. The alloy link there now is lighter and way stronger, apparently. The frame now has a direct mount front mech and retains a 73mm threaded BB.
Here’s Rob Roskopp and crew explaining the new machine.
We had a chance to ride the new Tallboy C on a big loop around Braemar this week. Premier users can read some of Chipps’ initial thoughts on the bike.
And now a gallery of details for you: