• This topic has 21 replies, 16 voices, and was last updated 4 years ago by iainc.
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  • which first full suss bike?
  • Premier Icon Keva
    Free Member

    I’ve been riding mountain bikes for over 25yrs and have never owned a full suss before so I’m thinking of buying my first one. I haven’t bought a new bike in ten yrs either and have been riding a Ti456 since 2008 which has been perfectly suitable for my riding but is now a little dated. The other two bikes I’ve owned for the last ten years are a carbon-alloy Giant XTC and a little steel 853 Rock Lobster. These two are being sold off and the parts from the 456 will get rebuilt into a shorter travel frame 26in hardtail. So that leaves room for a new bike. My first thought was a new Anthem2 27.5 with 130mm fork on the front but what else is available to me in the 2k-2.5k price range which is of a similar genre?

    A couple of things about me and where it’ll be ridden. At 5’4″ and between 9 and 9.5stone I’m small and light. Mostly it’ll get ridden on long distance rides round the West Berks/Wiltshire /Hampshire borders, trail centres in South wales, mainly Cwmcarn and Afan, and then further north on the natural trails around the Elan Valley.

    So I have a demo Anthem2 arriving at the LBS to collect next w/end, what other bikes should I be looking to try?

    Premier Icon PJM1974
    Free Member

    Definitely worth demoing as many bikes as possible until you find one that suits your riding style.

    I hear very good things about the new Stumpjumper, if I were in the market for a do it all full suspension bike that can cope with long distance rides then a Stumpy would be close to the top of my list.

    Premier Icon andreasrhoen
    Free Member

    130/130 or 140/140 travel sounds great.

    Right now a lot of tyre development going on… – make sure that the frame fits 2.6 inch tyres…(future upgrade?).

    Like for an hardtail – a good fork is key. Is the budget there for a bike with an Fox fork?

    Premier Icon CaptainFlashheart
    Free Member

    West Berks/Wiltshire /Hampshire borders

    My neck of the woods…Well, for these parts, I’d go short travel and light, especially with the trails as they are at the moment! Stumpy ST would fit the bill.

    However, for the fun side of things, the mid-travel* Stumpy looks great.

    The Anthem is a lovely bike. Always ride like they’ve got an extra inch of travel, which is a good thing. The SX variant (Not sure it’s in the range for 2018/9 though) beefed up the fork, wider tyres and a short stem/wider bar set up for moar schralp! Really fun bikes.

    Who’s your LBS?

    *There is a Stumpy Evo, but apart from the press launch pics, there’s a feeling it might not happen…

    Premier Icon tpbiker
    Free Member

    Not had one of the newer anthems but the one I had (2012 i think) was awesome up the climbs but a wee bit twitchy on the descents.That said it only had 100mm of travel and a 70 degree HA. Was very much an XC orientated bike. Loved it though.

    The 2018 650b version looks much more versatile..

    Premier Icon Keva
    Free Member

    I’d go short travel and light > this is exactly what I’m after, 130mm on the front is more than enough for me and I’d not really want anymore than 120mm on the rear, although I see the Stumpy has 130mm. I guess I’ll just have to see if I can get a demo ride and see what I think.

    make sure that the frame fits 2.6 inch tyres…(future upgrade?) > I’m really not sure I want tyres that size tbh.

    So apart from the Anthem and the Stumpy whayt other fairly short travel bikes are out there for me to try?

    Premier Icon PrinceJohn
    Free Member

    Whyte T-130

    Cotic Flare

    However be warned – as I found out when I moved to more modern geometry I found riding my old 26er felt floppy & sketchy in comparison, so you might end up needed to by a 26 BFE to make use of those 26 wheels.

    Premier Icon andreasrhoen
    Free Member

    Sounds fun. 130/130 is great.

    Fork, if you opt for a Fox: even the lower cost “GRIP” damper forks are really a blast. These are available since 1 1/2 years or so? “FIT4”: bit more expensive…and difficult to really feel the difference…130 mm Fox GRIP damper fork is great already.

    2.6 inch rubber: had the same opinion as you. Tested a 2.8 inch PLUS bike – was fun but somehow not really perfect. Too much like a tank and a bit slow.

    But tyre manufacturers put a lot of effort into the 2.6 tyre size. One of my bikes is a 150/150 all mountain bike with 2.6 inch rubber. Tyre pressure around 19 psi.

    This bike is so crazy good – mainly due to these fantastic (newly developed) tyres!

    You might love 2.35 or 2.4 inch rubber. But I really wouldn’t buy a frame any more which is limited to this tyre size.

    Upgrade to 35 mm rims and 2.6 inch rubber somewhen in the future…this really puts a big smile onto your face!

    Frames which are limited to 2.35 inch rubber: soon outdated?

    Not sure. But possible.

    Premier Icon stevehine
    Free Member

    Whyte T130 / FlareMax is my shortlist; both short travel (hah; I’m coming from 100/100 26″ wheels and remember the era where 70mm+ was “long” travel) – and bigger wheels.

    Premier Icon PJM1974
    Free Member

    I agree that 120-130mm is a sweet spot for all round riding, I used to have a first generation Camber (in 26″, how quaint!) and that was an excellent all round bike that rode better than the 2004 Specialized Enduro it replaced.

    Full disclosure:  I have two full suss bikes; a 29er Enduro and a 27.5″ Norco Sight.  Both have impressed me hugely for different reasons, but neither of these are what the OP is looking for given the mid-travel remit.  The Norco’s platform is very good, they’ve created an interactive bike with plenty of feedback that has slightly different geometry for each frame size.

    If there’s an Evans nearby (and I know that service can be patchy, depending on the outlet) then the OP could do far, far worse than to try one of these:

    https://www.norco.com/optic/

    Premier Icon nicknameless
    Free Member

    Bird aeris 120?

    Premier Icon philjunior
    Free Member

    It depends what you want out of it. As you’re keeping a hardtail going anyway it might be worth having something bigger than most others are recommending for big days out etc.

    Go and take a few demos, as 2000-2500 is a lot to spend on a bike you want to swap out in a year or less.

    Premier Icon Keva
    Free Member

    It depends what you want out of it. As you’re keeping a hardtail going anyway it might be worth having something bigger than most others are recommending for big days out etc.

    Go and take a few demos, as 2000-2500 is a lot to spend on a bike you want to swap out in a year or less.

    Phil, I will definitely be taking a few demos but not in the long travel arena, I don’t want or need a mahoosive bike. 130mm on the front and 120mm of rear suspension is more than enough for me, and to me is big, plus I expect to be keeping it for at least five years.

    I’ll have a quick google for the Norco and the Bird as those are new to me. Whytes are not really my thing I demo’d a 901 hardtail a couple of years ago and didn’t like it for many reasons, the best thing about it was the saddle which I promptly bought upon returning the bike 🙂

    Premier Icon zippykona
    Free Member

    My friend is a total hard tail fan.

    However he likes my anthem as it has that hard tail zip that he likes.

    My old Orange 5 was a wallowy piece of shit that seemed to need a weeks notice between pedal stroke and forward motion.

    Go Anthem.

    Premier Icon wesutf1
    Free Member

    Maybe look at the Focus Vice? 130mm fork, I think it has 120ish rear travel with the metric 190*45 shock. Think it’s 130 with a classic 190*51 shock though. I’m not sure they’re doing multiple spec levels on this model year and the base one may be a bit more basic than you’re looking for. Only £1400 though, so potential is there for upgrades.

    Premier Icon andreasrhoen
    Free Member

    A biking pal bought an CANYON NEURON recently.

    Not the type of bike for me – but sounds a bit that the PO would love this bike!

    I would describe it as “trail bike with focus on uphill efficiency”.

    Low weight, short travel, very good components, geo definitely tuned to turn this bike into an uphill mountain goat…

    And … some versions of the Neuron have an reduced price tag right now!

    Premier Icon joshvegas
    Free Member

    No idea

    But when you say little steel rock lobster… How little?

    Premier Icon joebristol
    Full Member

    A mate has a cube stereo 120. I didn’t like it as the suspension felt too firm, but it did feel very responsive and quick to accelerate. Had fox 32’s etc and the lockout genuinely seemed locked out. Seem pretty good value for money too.

    At the time I was riding a Boardman Pro fs with 150f/130t suspension for comparison – which felt very soft in comparison. Now riding an Aeris 145 which is another stage on again running 160f/160r.

    Premier Icon weeksy
    Full Member

    I’m in West Berkshire if you want to try a t130 mate.

    Premier Icon mikeys
    Full Member

    Hi,

    I got my first full suspension bike earlier this year after many years of riding a hard tail. I got a 27.5” Anthem frame and added some 130mm Yari forks which are probably a bit heavier than the frame warrants but I wanted something stiff. I absolutely love it! First time with a dropper post too and I’m now riding drop offs that I would never have done before and generally having a blast down hill. It then still gets up stuff in some cases finding grip that I wouldn’t find on the hard tail.

    Was it the best option? I can’t answer that because I didn’t try any others since I was getting such a good deal on the frame. I did also think about a Bird and probably really wanted one of the Cotic options if I could have justified the money. Mainly I would just say go for it – I’m wishing I’d done it years ago.

    mike

    Premier Icon idiotdogbrain
    Free Member

    I’d definitely second the recommendation to try a Bird Aeris 120 – great bikes, great company.

    Premier Icon iainc
    Free Member

    Current Anthem will fit the bill well. As others have said, they ride like they have more travel than the spec. I had a 2016 SX one, older geo, light and fun. Currently have a 2017 Anthem 1. Although only 120 front/110 rear it handles everything I do, from local xc and trail centres to big days in Cairngorms. It is also nice and light, significantly moreso than my similarly specced Bird Zero TR and not only is great fun and hugely capable on the descents, also outclimbs many others incl my Bird 😀

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