on one 456 to downhill on

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  • on one 456 to downhill on
  • i had a stock built on one 456 evo 2 the back end of 2013 built to their spec and have been doing my normal trail riding on it.


    i have recently been asked to have a crack and get into downhilling, now apart from the “go get a downhill bike” what can i do to the 456 to tinker it more toward downhill than trail riding?

    im pretty new to all things mtb so forgive the ignorance,
    do i need to consider tyre choice, handlebar width, etc etc

    appreciate the input

    It’s no different to ‘trail’ riding, except you don’t have to worry about climbing back up.

    Downhill tyres will make the most difference, e.g. supertacky maxxis high rollers. Get the biggest, softest compound tyres you can find.

    Fit a bash ring if you’ve not already got one. You could go the whole hog and fit a single ring and chain device, but IME the chain stays on well enough with a frotn mech and a bashring.

    i recently converted the triple to a double with a bash so thats one thing ticked off!

    ok cheers dude thats comforting to know ive not got to chuck £100s at it

    thank you

    Premier Icon chakaping

    Shortest stem and widest bar that you can get your hands on.

    Definitely not more than 50mm stem, preferably 780mm wide bar.

    If you’re on 9sp and keeping more than one front ring, I’d get a Blackspire Stinger or similar. Maybe this one…

    If you’re on 10 speed then a clutch mech would be a great investment.


    Love riding my 456Carbon on downhill trails- biggest things I would ensure are a short stem with wide bars (looks like thats already ticked with the stock spec though!). I have a 40mm stem, 760mm bars.

    Having some form of chain retention is useful so you don’t end up having to put the chain back on after every run (clutch mech/chainguide/narrowide chainring).

    As said above, decent tires work. I like my high rollers as they work well all year round. You really need to lean them over to get their cornering grip though (I think the short stem/wide bars helps with this!).

    It’s pretty much set to go as it is.

    I recently got a dh bike- rode my 456 at wharnecliffe one week followed by the dh bike the week after. I was obviously faster on my dh bike, but I had a lot more fun on the 456…


    Super wide bars? Short stem? Double ring? Nah, first thing i’d change are those forks. They’re not really up to DH duties at all unless you’re very, light and/or very slow.

    I’ve beefy 36 Fox (talas) on my 456SS with 720mm bars, 70mm stem and run 1×10 (with superstar plasma guide – no bash) and it’s works pretty good as a DH hardtail. Beauty of the Talas is i can also use it for general xc/trails too.


    If not DH tyres then at least get some DH inner tubes so you can whack into the rocks and roots with a bit more verve and gusto! and ting.


    I did a lot of downhill on my 456 summer season but got fed up of it being slower and sold it for a reign. The build will be fine, just dual ply tyres. A muddy mary in 2.5″ on the front will give you tonnes of confidence and a generic minion (f OR r) on the back is a great allround combo.

    Hardtails are superb on the steep stuff as they respond so directly and can be thrown from catcher to catcher, but when you start hitting boulders you’ll slow down a lot. Also it gets twitchy when you go very fast on techy turns etc. BUT, it’s great fun and will scare the pants off you at times!

    DH tyres make much more difference than dh tubes. Just buy tyres (try planet x for 20 quid ones) and see how you go. It’s great chucking a hardtail on an uplift trailer.

    im 12st so not exactly light, but never done a dh trail so i will bve going slow, and as said i dont wanna chuck tonnes of cash if i find its not my thing.

    tyres or inner tubes etc, dropping seats, changing pedals etc i can and have done, sticking on uprated forks for now is a no go due to £ but will be something i will place on the list and obv be top of list should i decide to get stuck into it, as you say they prob wont be lasting too long with a) not being dh orientated and b) me being s*** so no doubt giving them some stick beyond what they designed to do!

    again cheers all for the input….. the tools are coming out tomorrow

    what forks are they? Revelations? They’ll be fine. Yes 36’s may be stronger, but youre unlikely to be attempting any 20ft gap jumps on your first time.

    Flat pedals are good if youre in SPDs now, but theres a learning curve to those too.

    New tyres, anything else youd get better VFM paying for a skills day somewhere like Jedi or GreatRock.

    Where are you going to ride?

    b r

    Chunky Monkey tyres are a cheap start.

    Not really DH tyres though. Proper DH tyres are so grippy and puncture resistant it feels like cheeting compared to trail bike tyres.

    my most local will be cannock, ill be joining a group with varying degrees of experience and exuberance… they did cannock today and doing forest of dean tomorrow and they will be spending a week in france somewhere in the summer so they take it reasonably seriously so i dare say they can give me some pointers and may even between them be able to chuck a 2nd hand bike my way between spare parts from each 😀

    i reckon what glasgowdan said re:tyres is a good start, planet x doing maxxis high rollers for 20 quid at the mo and i can hunt for some deals in meantime.

    thanks all again for your input…. its proving not only an eye opener but also making me realise i can have a go on my 456 and not be completely ill equipped



    sticking on uprated forks for now is a no go due to £ but will be something i will place on the list and obv be top of list should i decide to get stuck into it, as you say they prob wont be lasting too long with a) not being dh orientated and b) me being s*** so no doubt giving them some stick beyond what they designed to do!

    It’s not that the Revs wont last long – they’re a decent fork for trail riding – but i found them to be a confidence vacuum on anything remotely DH, particularly in fast, rough corners (the kind of place where you really need to have a bit of faith in your kit – especially on a hard hardtail like the 456). I didn’t dare hit any big jumps on them, they were just too twangy. I gave them 3 good weeks and that was enough. Swapped them for something else. And that’s the thing. If they’re new/nearly new you’d easily get enough to cover the cost of an older set of something chunkier, so not as expensive as you might think.

    ahhh fair point! what would be a decent DH orientated set of forx then to fit the 456 with out caning the wallet!? for future reference

    2nd hand mind…..


    I’ve some pretty old (07) talas on mine 110-130-150 and i think they’re perfect. With the 456’s slack head angle you really don’t need to go 150-160 for it to be capable DH and you have the option to make the bike very versatile (as shown below 😀 )

    Bloody great bike for the money imo.


    my most local will be cannock, ill be joining a group with varying degrees of experience and exuberance…

    Stile Cop is ideal for learning on a hardtail – there’s a good selection of easier tracks that don’t require you to get massive amounts of air.
    I’ve ridden about half of them on a hardtail and am actually quicker on some tracks than on my DH bike. Start on the Red and Ridge Run, then move onto CDL, Little Bringe, A&E and Wonderland. I’m up there quite a bit, so give us a shout if you want to be shown what’s what.

    I’m pretty sure I’m going to frequent A&E but I don’t think it’ll be the trail one!

    Appreciate that dude, may well give you a shout!

    Premier Icon enigmas

    I ride a lot of downhill on my ragley blue pig quite a lot and agree with most of the comments above, decent tyres set up tubeless on wide rims make a massive difference in grip and comfort, also important are a decent length bar, short stem and quality forks.

    I say quality rather than stiff as I used to have evo level 32’s on my ragley and hated them, mainly because they dived through their travel on berms and compressions, swapped them for a set of factory 32’s made a massive difference, keeping the fork higher up in the travel made berms and steep sections a lot easier.

    So you want something like this really….

    456evo2. Tick
    780mm wide bars. Tick
    50mm stem. Tick
    2.5″ dual ply tyres. Tick
    Chain device. Tick

    I’m only running 150 revs as I don’t have much weight behind me, a measily 60kg… But they and the bike are more than capable, it’s only me who bottles the proper big boys stuff, not the bike….

    Running the 2.5″ tyres at 15-18 psi was fine, when I pumped them up to 30psi for a section of road I did one day, I did have a few issues with the rear tyre rubbing on a only very slightly buckled wheel… Make sure your rear wheel is true and dished with 2.5’s on as theres not much clearance!

    Do it there good fun to chuck down a steep hill…

    Lol funny you should pop up stripe, it’s your thread a while back when u bought yours just before you headed off to he alps that made me head off to Planet X/one one and get the 456 and on the Matt raw colour! I even sent my mate a pic of ur bike of that thread saying if I aim to setup like this (ur bike) I reckon I’ll be ok!

    Glad you touched base!


    brill bike 🙂

    Ha ha, well I had an awesome time on my 456 out in the alps, more than enough bike for morzine… The only thing I’ve changed for the uk/ trail centres are the tyres, now running 2.4″ big Betty’s the dual ply wicked will’s were so heavy if you had to pedal anywhere!

    Well I’m based near the centre of birmingham so my locals also Cannock so if you want a ride or head up there give me a shout,

    I only live in Stourbridge and work in brum so right by you dude!

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