Singletrack; rigid or suspension
You definately don’t need suspension… I’d take my rigid round any regular trail I’ve ridden on the bigger bikes, it was great fun at innerleithen on the black and downhill trails frinstance. Wouldn’t try it on harder dh trails and it’s not a lot of fun on really lumpy routes- I wouldn’t take it round the beast of brenin, I know it’d do it but I doubt I’d enjoy it much.
Slower? Aye, unless it’s very smooth. And I mean very smooth. You’ll hear people moaning on here about how Glentress is too smooth frinstance, it’s just a sanitised gravel path, all whacker-plated to death… Try it at speed on a rigid, you find where those bumps went, your suspension soaked them up and you forgot they existed.
But on a lot of trails the difference is less than I’d expected, and a good rider can still drop a bad rider. Plus if you’ve got all your time on rigids it takes time to learn how to make real use of suspension, took me ages to learn to let the fork work.Posted 6 years agocrotchrocketMember
I’d add that the better condition my core is in and the fitter I am, the more comfortable I feel having ridden a solid or HT for long periods of time. If my condition is poor, I feel considerably better over a long ride if I used a FS bike.
I suspect therefore that a FS would make me faster over a shorter course because it is more forgiving and allows me to put more energy into pace and less into managing the terrain.
With the bikes I own I’d say the rigid sometimes “feels” faster over a section, but I suspect that might be because it is a short section. Plus the bike is sharper handling and alot lighter than the other bikes I have.
So: if the OP narrowed the question to a type of trail, the OP might get a more specific answer.
Is climbing on a solid frame the same weight as a FS/HT as fast?Posted 6 years agoWorldClassAccidentMember
My fleet of steers include a FS, HT and fully rigid fixie and being rad to the power of gnarr I get dropped / left for dead by all sorts of people.
FS is comfy and faster on an all day ride
Fixie is quiet and sublime when all alone in the dark
HT is Gnarr!
*Sorry for the language but spent last week and the local jump sites learning to leave the ground and seem to have picked up a language infectionPosted 6 years agotomasoSubscriber
I ride all sorts of bikes and get dropped and gapped by people on low end bikes 😉
I can remember riding my 91 marin with farmer johns through a twisty singletrack forest trail on slippery clay behind my mate who was a BMX racer. He gapped and dropped me riding a racer on slicks.
I prefer a full susser to a rigid bike, much the same as I prefer gears to singlespeed. I would counter that riding mostly in the Lakes for my enjoyment its full bounce all the way. Down in Sussex on the Downs behind my parents house it would be something far more XC and racey but still FS and gears.Posted 6 years agocookeaaSubscriber
Its all a trade off. For most of my riding a geared HT with a shorter travel fork strikes a reasonable balance between function, comfort, cost and maintainability.
Having said that this coming winter I plan to use an old rigid SS bike for my local loops to save the wear on the posher bikes and try and improve my fitness.
Ultimately it all depends on what sort of riding you do and your fitness levels, smaller bumps can be very fatiging over longer rides…Posted 6 years agoBernaardMember
TBH I am a renewed fan of rigid on my 29er. Riding a rigid to work every day with cheeky short cut through the woods helped.
I ride Cannock chase regular, and those braking bumps are not nice.Posted 6 years ago
I now have bikes with front suspension and gears too, so I have a choice.
For local stuff though gears and suspension not requiredmolgripsSubscriber
I’m sure it would be faster with gears and suspension, but where’s the fun in that?
Er speed can be fun…? I like it anyway.
And why try and drop people
Why not? It’s fun to test yourself against others. Only if they are your mates tho and are also trying. Otherwise you’re a tool.
Anyway to the OP – depends on the trail surface innit.Posted 6 years agoepicycloSubscriber
molgrips – Member
“I’m sure it would be faster with gears and suspension, but where’s the fun in that?”
Er speed can be fun…? I like it anyway…
Nothing wrong with liking a bit of speed.
The feeling of speed is relative though.
Jump on a bike with perfect suspension and you have to go much faster to get the same sensation as on a rigid. Presumably it’s the sensation you’re chasing, and the beauty of doing it the low-tech way is that it lasts longer. Rigid and longer, mmm there may be a joke in there…
If it’s absolute speed, then a trip in a plane will give you that.Posted 6 years agocharlie the bikemongerSubscriber
Rigid is gonna be harder but if mountainbiking was meant to be easy it would not include the words mountain or biking
Rigid means quicker climbs, and they are lighter when come to push them.
The downhills last longer.
That can only be a good thing.
Having said that my wrists still ache from cwncarn a week ago.Posted 6 years agoDancakeMember
I love my newly – built rigid! Did a little climb Tuesday that I never completed on my heavy FS and carried on in that vein for the rest of the ride .The trails were ace and it was fun all round.
On a more rooty, rocky trail the previous ride I couldnt see, I thought my teeth were going to fall out and I wanted to cry…I would have banged my FS down there much faster and had a much bigger grinPosted 6 years agoRoblillyMember
I’m “faster” (its all relative) on my full sus bike but actually enjoy riding trail centres more on a HT. I don’t want to use all the cliches about connecting with the trails etc, it just feels more fun. I also think that if I crashed my FS at full bore I’m going to get really hurt as you travelling that much faster!!Posted 6 years agoclubberMember
do you need tyres? do you need grips? do you need a saddle?
There will always be someone who’s a bigger tryhard than you out there…
Or just ride what you want that allows you the right balance between speed/skill compensation and enjoy it for that without worrying whether you’re able to drop others for whom the balance is different.Posted 6 years agomolgripsSubscriber
i ride rigid; 15 year old frame and can lead/drop a range of high end bikes
You drop RIDERS, you don’t drop bikes 🙄
Nothing wrong with liking a bit of speed.
The feeling of speed is relative though
To a point. But trails become different at different speeds. If you are rattling along trying to keep your kidneys in then it’s a challenge, sure, but if you smooth out the rocks and then you can go much faster which means you can be attacking the corners quickly and looking for fast lines that position you correctly for maximum speed.
Different challenges on different bikes. All good tho.Posted 6 years agoD0NKSubscriber
rigid/HT/FS….it’s all good. most bikes will ride most (rideable) stuff but the right type for the terrain will make it easier/harder and more pleasurable depending on your puritan/tackle-tart tendancies
Buffed smooth woodland twisty turny stuff rigid or HT, steep lakeland techno-rockfest FS please.
Did a little climb Tuesday that I never completed on my heavy FS
think that might be new bike syndrome, IME experience you try harder with a new bike – as I found out last thursday 🙂 new bikes are ace!Posted 6 years ago
charlie the bikemonger – Member
Rigid means quicker climbs
It’s way harder to get my rigid up some lumpy climbs than my full suss, despite it weighing about 2/3ds as much… The full suss can track over rocks etc, the rigid just has to lump up them, feels like it has square wheels sometimes.Posted 6 years agoKevevsMember
I don’t think it matters that much unless you are being competitive – with yourself, another person, a time or something. take it easy and enjoy is my bikey philosophy, and push it a bit when you feel like it. It’s mostly about enjoyment and being outdoors for me.
Obviously, I’d like a new bike to make it mo’ better, but I’ve wanted a new, better bike since I was 6.Posted 6 years agoavdave2Member
I’ve got my off road commuter rigid now but I’ve bought a hardtail for longer rides and weekends. I like riding rigid for the simplicity and would ride one all the time but for the pain I get in my ribs(lower down at the back) on a longer ride. It can be extremely painful and feels like they are moving around and stabbing vital internal organs. As I’m still alive and not coughing up blood I think it may be a little less serious than that but hurts like hell non the less.Posted 6 years agojuicedMember
trails don’t get lumpier, but vision is reduced. Nothing quite like flying downa bit of singletrack at night knowing you’ve got some suspension at the front if you hit something.Sometimes for example horse riders put small logs across trails to jump.i’d prefer to hit them with some suspension at night .Posted 6 years agorocky mountainMember
aww well, usual load of rubbish and gems thrown into offset it the rubbish.
am i a noob, well yes after riding for 15 years and thousands of miles here and in NZ, still heaps to learn and develop… every ride brings something new.
the point is; with good wheels and tyres on most trails in the uk do you really need suspension? picking the lines and getting into corners is where its at.
one final point; why is singlespeed/on one/ rigid so popular now?Posted 6 years ago
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