Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
  • Confused about what to do
  • elnevera
    Full Member

    Hi all,
    I currently have a 2013 Trek Stache, had it since new. It’s been massively under used but the urge is strong to get back out on my bike. Years of foot problems have meant I’ve not done any more than a couple of easy rides.
    I’ve previously asked questions about upgrading it or selling at getting something newer geo wise.

    I want to understand more about how the geo changes things.

    The Stache has a head angle of 68.6° and a seat angle of 72° and at the time, both of these felt amazing compared to my old Claude Butler I had before.
    A couple of things I didn’t like were the light front end when climbing steep hills, it just felt like it was going to lift. Also, the reach started feeling off on long rides.

    It is a lovely bike though, and I already have some slx 7100 brakes lined up to go on to replace the elixir 1’s and would swap to a 1x.
    It has a longish stem and if I was to shorten it, the reach issue would be bigger I guess.

    The alternative is something more modern, slacker, longer travel and longer reach. For this reason example it’ll be a Ragley Big Al which has a HA of 65° and 74° for the seat tube angle. The reach is 480mm vs 443mm on the Stache.

    I know it is more subjective but given that I am 6’3” and 19 stone could I expect it to be more comfortable?

    I’ve been looking at the numbers on this website,ragley-big-al-2021-xl,canyon-stoic-2021-xl/

    Riding wise, I like flowy trails, some technical but it’ll be a while before fitness and skills return so it’ll need to be okay on the flat.

    I know it reads like I’m trying to justify a new bike but I do like my Stache and upgrading parts could be fun.
    I only have room for one bike though!


    Free Member

    TBH just ride it and once you’re happy you’ve sorted your foot issues (do you use SPD or flats?) start to work out what you actually want from a bike, and where you’ll ride (the vast majority of time).

    Full Member

    At 6’3″ you’ll be delighted to know that people now make bikes that will fit you. If I were you and not sure what I wanted and wasn’t sure how I’d benefit from a modern bike I’d look at demo days. Lots of companies like Cotic, Bird, Geometron* etc will loan you a bike for a few hours at a trail centre or something. Where are you based and what are your local trails?

    I’d leave your current bike as it is. Take it to a demo day, do a few hours on a new bike then jump back on the Stache and see how you feel about it.

    *I’m not suggesting that you need one of these very expensive bikes, I’m just thinking of companies who seem to be out and about with a fleet of bikes all the time and they’re probably quite easy to get a ride on.

    Full Member

    Aware modern geometry makes bikes come alive and all that – in a lot of cases they do, but if you liked the bike back in 2013 and your riding hasn’t changed, then it will still be fine now…so don’t get too hung up on this new fangled geometry.

    Personally, I’m thinking this new geometry or low, long and slack is good but the long bit is meaning I’m needing to remember to change my riding technique – I instinctively ride with weight back which makes the front end seriously light and washes out a lot. I need to remind myself to get over the bars more – once done the bike feels much better, but I’m needing to consciously think about it as it is 30+ years of bad technique trying to be beaten out of my head!

    I’d suggest getting out and riding the bike more often and get back into it. You may find with fitness improvements and remembering technique that the bike doesn’t need changed or you’ll have a better idea of what you are looking for in the next bike.

    Basically, I’m suggesting not buying a new bike just because this new geometry is being talked about – there wasn’t a huge amount wrong with the geometry of your bike when you bought it so unlikely to be any different now…

    Full Member

    The light front is probably thanks to you being sat over the rear wheel if that seat angle is anything to go by.

    Full Member

    Unclear what you are looking for really – if upgrading the stache with new parts I wouldn’t throw much money at it – fair enough with new brakes if the old ones are faulty. Just get out and ride it then and see how you go.

    If you’re asking what a new bike would give you I’d say currently your bike has a reach of 443mm which is very short for someone of your height – I’m 5’9 and I designed myself a bike from Marino that I have a reach of 445m on to be playful. I.e. I could have gone a bit longer for more capability on steep tech.

    You mention you don’t like how light it is at the front uphill – some of that is how short your bike is – but also the seat tube angle of 72degrees. The higher your saddle is the further back your weight will be with that seat angle which creates front wheel lift. A newer bike will sit you more over the bottom bracket and will also stretch out a bit more to the bars when standing up.

    You’ll end up with a bike that feels a little bit harder to initiate turn in to corners on (but not hard – just not hyper like old bikes), but it’ll climb better in terms of keeping the front wheel down and you’ll also have more confidence on fast down hill sections and steep stuff.

    A quick glance at the Big Al suggests that’s fairly decent trail bike geometry without going too mental. Some bikes will have a steeper seat angle but 74-75 degrees feels about right to me on a hardtail for all round riding – as it’s a hardtail that’ll steepen as the fork sags anyway.

    If you look at something like a Pipedream Moxie (looks beautiful in metallic pink) they go a lot steeper on seat angle and a bit slacker in head angle. This means if you are doing a steep winch up a hill then bombing back down it’ll probably be better at climbing for that use – but on long mtb loops it’ll probably be less comfortable.

    Similar bikes to the Big Al are the Vitus Sentier and Nukeproof Scout – all related to Chain Reaction Cycles.

    Free Member

    I’m 5’9 and I designed myself a bike from Marino that I have a reach of 445m


    Full Member

    Thanks everyone, really appreciate the thoughts.
    Back in 2013 the Stache was also available in xxl but the shop only had an XL I could try and told me I’d be better on the XL, I do think I would have been better on the xxl with longer reach.

    The NP scout has an XXL.
    I’d say I’m longer in the body than the legs (33-34” inside leg trousers and always struggle with tips that aren’t extra long).

    I going to switch to clipped in as part of the foot issues is Neuropathy which means I have little sensation from my right foot and I know from past riding that it leads to losing my foot placement and torn up shins so that needs to stop.

    I live near Leeds so I have access to Leeds Urban Buke park, plenty of greenways and canal towpaths. Mixture of riding really.

    I’ll look at the longer options, maybe the xxl scout. You’ve described it pretty well. I think I know the modern rigs would suit me better but it is the XL big Al being on offer at £279.99 that has got me thinking about it.

    you’re correct, I also ran my seat as high as it would go so being over the back wheel was likely.

    thanks for the advice.


    Full Member

    Not sure mine ended up being advice – more like just my thinking. I’m tight-fisted so tend to look at things that don’t cost money that could be fixed (or lead to knowing what I’m after in more detail so when I do end up spending the money it is more relevant). Saying that though, I’ve not worked out where to spend my money to get my brain to stop making me move backwards…more practice needed but I’m getting annoyed at how often I’m needing to remind myself to look up and stop leaning back!!! 🙂

    Full Member

    @sharkattack I live near Leeds so I have access to Leeds Urban Buke park, plenty of greenways and canal towpaths. Mixture of riding really.

    Get yourself to Hamsterley and take a Bird out for the day. They’ve got some nice bikes in the demo fleet, I was checking them out yesterday.

    Free Member

    I’d totally agree you should demo … certainly before spending more or significant money.
    You’ll probably find the changes with a modern bike are just as significant as the Claude to the Stache… obviously if not crack on …

    IMHO its worth investing in a few demo days before you drop the money than after and as said above it doesn’t mean you need to buy THAT demo bike but you’ll have a better idea how the geo and size work and can then use that as a base when comparing other bikes/frames etc.

    Most modern bikes (certainly the Bird you could demo at Hamsterly) are reach based sizing.. not the old fashioned seatpost based sizing. Basically on more modern bikes the seatpost is designed low enough you can choose the bike based on reach not legs (which is great for me as well)

    Full Member

    I went from 2010 26″ steel HT (Sanderson) to 2017 27.5 alu HT (Marin), and now have occasional rides on my sons 2021 29er FS (RockyMountain).

    The leap in geometry between all three is noticeable.

    The Marin is faster, more able to hold speed and lines and more confident – while also steel feeling really poppy and (gasp!) ‘alive’….than my old Sanderson.

    The RockyMountain is even faster, even stabler, even more ‘ohmagawdhowfastamigoing’…but it is also an absolute beast to get it to flick around or feel like you are more than holding on and letting brakes go… It is amazing, but to my mind, not as engaging unless at 100% flat out.

    My skills now lag the geometry and ability of the latest bikes. I don’t ride trails extreme enough – they are steep enough, fast enough, rocky enough.

    I also miss the steel frame feel.

    And I have as much fun on any of them.

    I am not feeling the need for an upgrade just yet.

    The leap in components, damping, new colours etc, much less noticeable.

Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)

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