Calibre T3 Hardtails: High stoke, low budget

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Calibre’s T3 Hardtail mountain bike lineup continues the brand’s tradition of producing proper, good value mountain bikes, with good quality components where it counts. The T3 lineup consists of the T3 27, which has 27.5 inch wheels and the T3 29, which is a 29er.

Both bikes come with the kinds of standards and components you’d be looking for on bikes of a much higher price point. These are frames you can live with and upgrade as you progress, and build specs that will let you enjoy riding and develop good habits and techniques.

Calibre Line T3 29
Calibre Line T3 27

The components are the same between the two bikes. They just differ on the wheel size and geometry of the frame. The only other difference on spec is that the T3 27 comes with SRAM Level T brakes, while the T3 29 has the slightly more powerful SRAM Guide T version. Both will allow you to do one finger braking – no two finger or handfuls of brakes to haul on here. Both are compatible will decent sintered and organic pads rather than only the cheaper resin pads that you’ll find on a lot of bikes at this price point.

Another great up to date feature is the one by drivetrain. You get the SRAM NX 11 speed rear derailleur, mated with a Sunrace 11-42 cassette with a 32T chain ring up front. You get a Calibre own brand crank, but it’s a proper 104 BCD on a threaded BB. None of that square taper or ISIS bottom bracket you so often get at this price point. This gives you a modern and up-to-date, drivetrain that is all ready to be upgraded as you live with the bike.

Up front you’ve got a RockShox FS-Recon Silver-RL fork with 140mm of travel. This is proper trail bike territory with enough suspension to keep you comfortable on lumpy trails and big hits. Adding further comfort are the 2.6 inch Maxxis Rekon tires, these will be fast rolling and grippy on half pack surfaces like you’ll find at trail centres or perhaps your local jump spot.

Whether your speeding down the trail on the T3 29, or jibbing and tricking on the T3 27, the geometry should give you loads of confidence. Both frames have low standover, meaning it’s easy to move around on the bike, or bail if you have to. They’ve got modern long reach numbers – 450mm in this medium, 495mm in this XL T3 29. The T3 27 has slightly shorter but still totally up to date reach numbers for that agile riding position. Head angles are 65 on the T3 27 and 65.5 on the T3 29. The seat tube angle is 75 degrees on both, giving you an efficient pedalling position to get up those hills or along the road to your favourite jumps.

The frames have bosses under the top tube in addition to the water bottle bosses on the downtube. This means that when you’re out and about you’ve got somewhere to stash a innertube, multitool, or maybe even a jacket as well as a bottle of water.

Calibre wants mountain biking to be accessible to all and these bikes are designed to give a high quality ride experience without a high pricetag. It’s about getting out there and having fun on a bike that isn’t compromised by component choices.

Which Calibre T3 hardtail is right for you?

The T3 29 is designed for those who want to cover the ground and go fast, so if you like to do laps of red trails, or get out there and explore the woods, this could be the bike for you. On the other hand, the T3 27 has been designed for agility, definitely with one eye on those for whom T-bogs, turndowns, Supermen and Sui-s is a part of the lingo. The T3 27 is the bike for the jibbers and trick throwers.

The Line range is designed to be durable as well as affordable, making it a great entry point as a first adult mountain bike. Parents looking for a first adult bike for their teenager would do well to take a good look at these bikes from Calibre. Or, if you’re an adult just getting into riding, these bikes will let you get out there and have fun – with plenty of money left over to invest in skills courses, fun days away to new locations, or just an extra large hot chocolate at the end of a ride.

It’s great to see a brand putting at access to mountain biking at the top of its agenda and coming up with proper bikes with proper components that will give you a great trail riding experience and encourage skills development as a result. More bums on bikes, more stoke on the trails, and a whole world of adventures!

The Line range is available from go outdoors where of course if you get a membership card you get a fairly significant discount on all products. The T3 29 has an RRP of £1300 and the T3 27 is £1200. However get yourself a membership card and you can expect to get £200 off that list price.

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Author Profile Picture
Hannah Dobson

Managing Editor

I came to Singletrack having decided there must be more to life than meetings. I like all bikes, but especially unusual ones. More than bikes, I like what bikes do. I think that they link people and places; that cycling creates a connection between us and our environment; bikes create communities; deliver freedom; bring joy; and improve fitness. They're environmentally friendly and create friendly environments. I try to write about all these things in the hope that others might discover the joy of bikes too.

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  • Calibre T3 Hardtails: High stoke, low budget
  • noeffsgiven
    Free Member

    Nicer welding than a lot of Orange and Bird frames I’ve seen.

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