- Other than Flaremax…
So temptation is prpving too much. Looking to replace my T129RS with another 29 short travel trail bike. I do not want carbon so The Flaremax is option one, Commencal Meta TR Race is option 2. Any other suggestions for a metal framed bike with decent bits on – budget about £3.5k?Posted 2 days agojoebristolSubscriber
dit, the cheapish Vitus, can’t remember the model, looks very well thought out.
If I had funds for a Flaremax / equivalent I don’t think I’d be considering the Mythique. The seat tube angle is a bit odd – means you can’t get much seatpost in the frame.
Think the Optic is carbon and quite slack for a trail bike but they look great.
Reactor 290 looks pretty appealing as per the above poster’s comments.
Is the Whyte S120 available in Alu?Posted 2 days agomoonsaballoonSubscriber
Another happy flare max owner here but for alternatives 3.5 k would get you a fairly high spec sonder evol .
I wonder if norcos would be more popular here if they weren’t sold just through Evans as they do look pretty sorted and get pretty good reviews on pinkbike etcPosted 1 day ago
Thanks for the suggestions – riding more gnarly XC/trail and long days out ideally as exploring rather than bike parks is my thing, though with the geometry to be able to hoon down when I can. I love the T129 though I have upped the front end travel to 140 as I have long legs so end up sitting loads higher than the bars! Downsides are the seat angle when post is fully up (my bum is pretty much over the rear axle!) and the lack of clearance for the rear tyre, combined with a short chainstay. Climbing anything steep has me lifting the front even when seated!
I like the Norco idea of longer chainstays for taller riders but Evans being the only seller does not fill me with joy.
If Bird are about to produce a trail 29er then that would be very interesting. I love being able to spec the components to get what you want rather than having to compromise.Posted 1 day ago
The meta is such a cool looking bike, do you need to look for longer chainstays than average though OP?
The reason I asked what kind of riding is that the cotic is a great bike but geared more towards descending than some options.
The orange stage 5 could be worth a look, if the sizing works for you and you appreciate the delights of a single pivot frame.Posted 1 day agobowglieSubscriber
I’ve previously owned a FlareMAX, and still have my RocketMAX, but recently got a 2020 Trek Fuel EX8. The RocketMAX has been ridden so infrequently since getting the Trek that I’ve stripped the frame to upgrade bits on the EX. I much prefer the ride, handling and weight of the Trek to the Cotics – the latter do have a relatively perky feel for their weight, but the Trek climbs noticeably quicker, and what’s surprised me is that it descends better than the RocketMAX, even though that had higher spec suspension components.
In a nutshell, I think Trek have come up with an absolute blinder of a ‘do it all trail bike’ – and I quite like the plain Jane anonymity of it. (& I’m generally more attracted to niche brand bikes).Posted 1 day ago
So the list to look at – Reactor alloy with the Pike, Trek Fuel ex 8 with some swaps and additions, Giant Trance 29 1, Commencal meta TR, Cotic Flaremax and Orange stage 4 or 5. Love the Starling but too much for me! The Swarf maybe but reckon I would bust the budget badly! Nearly got carried away on the Bird site with the AM9 but should wait for a shorter travel 29 if they are going to make one……..
So time to ride some demos then! Thanks for all the helpful ideas. I will et you know once the demos are done!Posted 15 hours agoslackboySubscriber
Having owned both a trance and a flaremax, I’d be looking at a trance 29 for that sort of brief
Flaremax is a great bike, but it is heavy and if you spending an appreciable amount of time lifting it over stiles then something a bit lighter would be welcome.
Trance suspension is less active than flaremax and I think it climbs a little bit better. Flaremax is much better going down – very stable and confidence inspiring.Posted 5 hours agoSir HCSubscriber
Giant has some strange sizing going on, rode a large and it felt quite small. Short headtube means bringing the bars up, you lose a load of reach. I had a 2014 for a couple of years and really liked the way it rode, efficient and was a sub 30lb build.
I’ve just replaced my 2017 Smuggler with a Reactor. So far so good, the reactor is a lot more active, so local xc stuff I’ll be winding on the low speed and adding a bit more pressure to the rear. More supple off the top and the shock is a step on from the DB inline I have on the smuggler.
I would class the smuggler as a trailbike, short travel, not to slack/long/low/fashionable. The reactor feels more like a mini enduro bike, its as slack as my Enduro 29! I can see me riding the reactor over my bigger bike, which was always the plan, especially as the Privateer when it arrives is a step on from the enduro in terms of length/slackness.
£1900 is strong money for a nukeproof frame, they used to be sub 1500! However, it comes with the ultimate shock, helitaped in the wear areas and a headset. Internal routing is well thought out.Posted 2 hours agojoebristolSubscriber
If the Bird Aether suddenly arrives in 29er it should be a decent price with shock – you can get the Aether 7 with deluxe select+ shock / rear axle / chainstay protector / headset / seat clamp for about £1300. The RS ultimate shock was I think about £100 more or you could get the Super Deluxe for a bit more again.
Not sure in terms of weight how it would compare with the Flaremax – they’re both built robustly / to take some abuse.
Don’t be tempted with the AM9 for what you describe – it’s very much an Enduro bike and on easy xc ish Singletrack / pedally trail centre stuff it dumbs it down quite a lot. On more difficult terrain it’s epic through from what I read. I’ve just sold the Aeris 145LT which is the 650b Bird bike and it’s similar ish to the AM9 – although apparently the AM9 pedals a bit better. Point it down something fast and rocky and it’s immense though!Posted 1 hour ago
£1900 is strong money for a nukeproof frame, they used to be sub 1500!
Wasn’t the original Mega £900?
Which is what I paid for my old Mega 290 frame & shock NOS as well actually.
Not many things are certain in this life, but Nukeproof bikes/frames getting reduced is a pretty safe bet.Posted 49 minutes ago
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