- When is it time to jump too a full sus?
I was riding through the woods the other day and stopped at the top of a 15ft near vertical rooty drop in, at the bottom of which two blokes were building a 6ft 45 degree ramp to 6ft gap, out of walling stone. I watched for a minute, got their attention, talked for a while, commented that I needed a bigger bike to try that (I really meant bigger balls).
Curly haired dude nodded towards his bike and stated that he did it on a hardtail. I said my goodbyes and minced down the chicken run.
True story bro’.
But yeah, I’m faster on a FS than I am on a HT, by quite some margin.Posted 3 years agoakaskittlesMember
Is there a point where you stop progressing on a Hardtail where you can’t progress in the sport without making the change to a full sus.
I’ve been hitting bigger jumps, drops DH trails and I feel like I’m not riding to my full potential so should I make a jump? Or just man up, build a stronger HT and push past my limits?Posted 3 years agocaffeineoldbeanMember
I have recently gone the fs route after years on a hardtail. Definitely gives me more confidence and feels so good to not have my eyes wanting to rattle out of my head when things get lumpy bumpy. Love that floating sensation you get. Kept the hardtail it’s good to have both.Posted 3 years agotomhowardSubscriber
Whenever you like. Generally the people who say you have to ‘learn’ on a hardtail only say so because when they first started out fs bikes were for the most part, heavy, expensive and almost always crap, so they bought/stuck with hardtails. They do sort of have a point though. Hardtails do teach you about line choice, so if you are quick though the rougher stuff on a ht, you will fly through on a fs. You’ll still be pretty quick even if you didn’t learn on a ht though, and not have memories of shattered bones from years riding a ht.Posted 3 years agomatther01Member
You’re likely to be faster and probably a lot better on the old joints. Must admit I seem to be riding my HT more and more of late. It also depends on the HT. Steel Bfe or something similar could be better and less maintenance? Oooo…privee shan if you can afford one?Posted 3 years agoglasgowdanMember
Hardtails dont make you a faster rider. I have found that a good full sus has changed my riding and enabled me to ride much better lines. Theres no need to negotiate every smaller feature/root/rock etc, so you ride a much smoother line and look further ahead. I think a full sus can make you a better rider and give you skills you simply wouldnt get on a hardtail.
saying that, a chap I know smashes the majority of people on his hardtail at scottish enduros!Posted 3 years agodeanfbmMember
If you’re a fast rider, you’re a fast rider.
If you can smash through stuff on a FS, you can smash through the same stuff on a hardtail.
GEO/build matter far more than just having suspension.
My big arguing point for sticking with hardtail stem from jumping/hopping/grip skills. Suspension does add a level of removal from what is going on. It will mask feeling of grip levels and makes it more difficult to moneuver the bike. Learning to hop or jump? A FS will mask your inputs to the bike and the bikes inputs to you, making it more difficult in the long run to understand, hence nail what is going on.Posted 3 years agoBlazin-saddlesMember
Fullsus overkill for most trail centres. Cannock definitely
Not sure I agree with this. I race fairly seriously and have done lots of timed laps of Cannock and other trail centres and I’m always quicker on my 23lb Anthem than I am on my 21lb hard tail. add to that like people say, I can go to work the next day not feeling like I’ve been run over and FS swings it for me most of the time.
HT feels faster on smooth climbs but anything bumpy and the ability to stay on the gas whilst the shock takes care of the traction and FS is usually quicker.
at the end of the day FS is a skills compensator, if you’re a good rider you’ll ride anything quick, if you’re not then the FS may help. FS often gives you a 2nd bite of the cherry when things go a bit ‘wrong’Posted 3 years agomotozuluMember
Some good points. I’ve just gone F/S mainly because my spine (at 51) isn’t as supple as it was and after an outing to Degla it felt like I had had a good kicking.Posted 3 years ago
I ride Cannock mostly as I live trailside and the F/S has transformed me already – much faster on the down bits than I ever was on the HT and also there is a lot of truth in the skills thing – I’ve topped out on the HT, never going to get any better as a rider and the F/S seems to compensate for that a bit, my confidence is coming on a bundle.johnnyboy666Member
I made the jump around xmas time. I think it depends on the hardtail you came from. I had a Blue Pig which along with your Bfes and Slacklines are about as capable as a hardtail can get so it wasnt a case of allowing me to ride anything more difficult. I still maintain that there is nothing those bikes will not do well. For me it was the ability to ride harder for longer with out getting so beaten up. With the mega looming I was going to keep the hardtail as for the race I think it would be fine but for a whole week of riding I’d just be mess by the end.
Its always hard to define overkill at trail centres. All trail centres I have been to can be ridden with a rigid if you really want to so you could say a hardtail is overkill. Unless you’re a racer and count every second surely you are never over/under biked if it’s the one you are having the most fun on.
JohnPosted 3 years agomildredMember
I don’t see that full sus’ is a progression of/from hardtail, it’s just different. The skills you learn on each are transferable to the other, with only a bit of adaptation of your technique.
…much faster on the down bits than I ever was on the HT and also there is a lot of truth in the skills thing – I’ve topped out on the HT, never going to get any better as a rider and the F/S seems to compensate for that a bit, my confidence is coming on a bundle.
To me, the appeal of hardtail is that it is much easier to find the limit; it is where the fun, enjoyment, buzz, rush, whatever… resides, and I don’t have to be going so quickly to find it. Again, one isn’t a progression of the other, it just provides a slightly different experience.Posted 3 years agoI_AcheMember
I have both and use them both for all sorts of riding. Until recently I would have said my ht was the do everything bike but me realising my limits and getting a lighter shorter travel fs, and also having a knackered ankle, has sort of pushed the ht into a more specific type of bike.
I normally use the fs for trail centres and ride cannock at least twice a month. If I decide to take the ht I find that I am entering sections much faster than I am comfortable with at first, but still at the same speed as I do on the fs. The ht sharpens certain skills that have been learnt on the fs. I think the fs makes me faster and helps me push my boundaries but the ht makes me ride the same things smoother.
I wouldn’t be without either even tho riding the ht around cannock means I spend the next day high on prescription pain killers.Posted 3 years agoI_AcheMember
Mosey I have always had big fs bikes, mainly Specialized Enduros. Last year I got a Enduro Evo frame which was brilliant at what it was designed for but overkill for most of my riding. It was pretty difficult to climb on partially because of the weight that was a function of the build. I changed this a couple of months ago for a Stumpjumper Carbon frame and kept some of the build such as the forks (160mm Lyrik DPA) so it would be more like a stumpy evo. The bike as a whole is much better suited to my riding and I am even riding up hills now, I always used to push. I havnt taken it to an uplift day yet but it copes really well at stile cop, so much so I don’t pine for a slightly bigger bike. I would like a proper dh bike but I have always wanted one so that has nothing to do wit b the stumpy.
My ht is a Cotic BFe built with 140mm coil pikes and strong wheels. I could and probably would take it dhing if it wasn’t for my ankle.Posted 3 years agojamj1974Subscriber
There is no right or wrong time OP. Get one when you can if you want one.
I started in the days when Rockshox was still a twinkle in Paul Turners eye – so suspension wasn’t a widely available option. As time has gone by I moved to suspension forks at the time when most serious MTB’ers seemed to and took my first step into full suspension only a few short years later. I don’t think everyone should start as I did – but I do think it can make you a better rider as I certainly read the trail differently to some of my riding companions. I also think it can encourage a smoother riding style. I have always had full suspension, hardtail and often a fully rigid bike at the same time and they all offer a different experience and use different parts of my (modest) skill-set.Posted 3 years ago
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