My Soul doesn't handle as I feel it should

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  • My Soul doesn't handle as I feel it should
  • andyl

    What tyres? What tyre pressure?

    Premier Icon FOG

    Racing Ralphs, 30 to 40 psi


    Sounds like the big fork is making it too slack and tall, meaning you cant get enough weight over the front for adequate grip. afaik 120mm is the sweet spot for the soul (certainly was on my bfe) so maybe try lowering it and see if that helps.


    length of stem?

    something shorter will make it feel a bit quicker.


    I would space down to 120. I’ve got a soul and very briefly tried it at 140 – much, much prefer it at 120. Handles the twisty stuff much better.

    Premier Icon jambalaya

    I think it’s a mental problem, ie in your head. You’ve not built confidence in the new bike, just try sessioning a few corners building speed each time and try and forget about anything too technical re the bike

    I have a BFe with adjustable 150/120’s on and it goes round corners in both settings (Bfe has same geo as Soul)


    Not sure what psi I used to have my old Revs at, but 80/90 sounds rather low for a 13st person? I have my Reba’s at 105psi after finding that just below 100 and the front dived too much and bottomed out fairly regulary, causing me to fly forward. Do you bottom them out regularly?
    I also run lower tyre pressures. 25-30.

    Try and see what you think

    Premier Icon FOG

    I have a 70mm stem and actually reduced fork pressure to try and solve the problem, perhaps I ought to try putting some more air in

    b r

    The forks are 140mm q/r Revs which were fine on the 456 that came before. I know Cy says 120mm is the ideal


    Premier Icon FOG

    My latest generation Soul doesn’t seem to like going round corners. It feels like it is going to wash out or go straight on and has actually dumped me on my ear on fairly innocuous corners. The forks are 140mm q/r Revs which were fine on the 456 that came before. I know Cy says 120mm is the ideal for Souls so is it worth spacing to 120 or fiddling incrementally with fork air pressures, + and – to see if this improves things. I am about 13 stone and normally run about 80/90 in the forks.
    I bought the bike after a test ride on a Cotic demonstrator with 120mm Foxes so I know it shouldn’t be like this!


    IMO Racing Ralphs don’t have the best grip in the world anyway. I ran a Hans Dampf front 25psi and Spesh Purgatory 2.2 28psi rear and the grip was incredible from the very first ride.

    Tried a Crossmark 2.1 rear at Sherwood Pines last week and it was a little hairy in places and nowhere near as comfy…gone back to the purgatory.

    I’d take confidence in cornering with grippier tyres than flat out speed all day long…but I tend to break bones quite easily!


    Get the Ralph off the front and swap it for a Fat Albert. Short Stem, Wide bars and it’ll be the best thing you’ve ridden.

    120mm felt right on mine and I tried 140,130 120 and 110. Sell it to me 🙂


    I think you answered your own question. You should have known.

    Premier Icon kelvin

    Shorter lower stem.
    Wider lower bars.


    I ran my Soul with 140mm Revs. Felt great to me, but then I didn’t know any different and was always curious about reducing the travel.

    And push down with your inside hand when cornering – griptastic!

    As above, spiky front tyre, shorter stem and wider bars make EVERYTHING better.


    I’d say the most obvious thing is too much pressure in the tyres. 30-40psi. Wow.

    Premier Icon mintimperial

    I run 110-140 Talas forks on mine and it handles really well at 140 so long as it’s pointing downhill. I don’t think it’s the travel that’s the issue, although 120mm would be better all round if you’ve got the choice.

    I also run a 70mm stem, it’s perfect for me. I’ve run a Ra-Ra on the front in the past and, well, I’d need to be a much better rider to be happy with that level of ‘grip’ in the corners (great on the back though). Put a chunkier tyre on there, that’ll help massively.

    30-40psi. Wow.

    To be fair, if you run a lightweight Schwalbe XC tyre at anything under 30psi it will die of pointy rocks in about five miles or so in my experience…

    I run a 140 rev on my Soul, have no issues – I wouldn’t use a Ralph on the front unless I was riding super dry hardpack stuff though

    Premier Icon cy

    Few things to compare with the medium Soul demo bike for you, then you can see how to tweak your setup:

    Bar/stem – 70mm x 5deg + 710mm x 50mm rise bars. No spacers under the stem.

    Front tyre – Hi Roller 2.35″, rear IKON 2.2″.

    I think it’s been covered above, but before fiddling with your forks, try dropping the stem as low as you can, and try a grippier front tyre.

    Drop me a line if you want to talk it through more. I would need some more setup details like your current stem length, bar spec, that kind of thing.

    120mm is a good sweet spot for people not wanting to constantly adjust their forks, but with 140’s on it the main compromise is your seated position on steep climbs where the front can get a little wandery compared to shorter setting. It certainly still goes round corners great with 140’s on it, so it’s not your fork length per se, it will be something we can solve with your set up.




    Out of interest what made you change the 456 for a Soul?

    Bar rise jumps out at me there – 50mm rise on the bars with 140 forks would be a bad pairing. Half inch rise on my bars with the 140 forks.

    Premier Icon nickc

    If you transferred the lot from an old bike, I’m guessing the RR are worn out. IME they go from OK brand new, to only use on the rear when it’s bone dry after a quite short period of use. If you like schwable tyres, I found a RR on the back and Nobby Nic on the front was a good compromise.

    Premier Icon FOG

    chilled76- I just couldn’t get on with the 456, it felt like a tank charging through things which I didn’t have the bottle to deal with.I had always fancied a Soul and a test ride really convinced me especially as I rode it back to back with my own 456. Nothing wrong with the 456 just didn’t suit me. Up to press the Soul suits much better apart from the cornering issue e.g. I feel better going up and down.
    Cy thanks for the input, I will have a fiddle and get back to you if I can’t sort it.


    Picture of current set-up would be useful; It’s a slightly baffling issue you have there.


    Sounds like it’s all in your head? Just get used to the bike.
    Some can adjust quickly, others may take hours in the saddle.

    My first ride (other than a car park test) on a new build was a full-on DH race… had to adjust (mentally) from a slack 8″ travel DH sledge, to 5″ steep steel hardtail.

    (FWIW, I run 35-40psi in my tyres (Scott Cougar 2.25×26) on the XC wheelset)


    My latest generation Soul doesn’t seem to like going round corners

    becoming a known issue with all hardtails, its due to the pressure selling of 29rs, all the 26rs are trying to prove they have the straight line speed and cannot corner for toffee.

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