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Great piece Andrew. Absolutely agree and would love to see more adjustable geo, especially for those like me who aren't lemmings following the as long and low as possible crap and who like to actually be the one responsible for getting down the trail and having fun doing it, not just letting 150/160/170mm of travel and slack angles do it all for me as I sit as a passenger.
Great example with Banshee, they were ahead of their time by years with geo and the adjustable drop out system, very easy to adjust and allowed the use of various wheel sizes and widths. I still am riding my 2012 Banshee Prime pore-production frame, but it's a tank being build basically using the Legend tubeset I think, so even with a 130/140mm setup, it just feels like a tank that will plow over anything if you point it down/over it, so I don't ride it as much as my rigid Unit with 29x2.6-3" tyres which requires lots of careful attention and rider input to get down the same steep, gnarly stuff. Unfortunately I managed to crack the BB on my 2014 Phantom after 4 years of hard riding, how I have no idea, well I sort of do. It was my favourite bike, but, despite some warnings from Keith about geometry changes, managed to steal the rear tri from it and bolt it onto the old Prime PP frame, which I only got with 135 drop outs, so now can use 135, 142, 148 or 150 if I want.
I'd get a new Phantom despite the "huge" jump in travel to 115mm, the head angle it has I could work with, but that STA, absolutely no way in hell I could live or ride that with thew type of riding I like to do and the gears I like to push, so that whole idea of being able to have that somehow adjustable, besides over forking the bike and then running a negative angleset to bring the HTA back to something I consider "normal" would be sweet.
From what I understand in terms of a small company like Banshee, is that it's quite expensive toget the tooling and molds done for the various different drop outs and stuff like that, whereas a big company like Trek or SpecialED it would be a drop in the bucket for them. I try to stick to smaller brands, because to me, all the big companies do is let the smaller ones give things a go and innovate, then they come along once it's proven and use their might and huge production runs and lower costs to win the market - remember Giant and how late they came to 29ers and flopped, then were so late they went to 650B because they feared loosing out there and came up with all that BS marketing that 650B was right in the middle of 26" & 29", when in reality it's very much closer to a 26" than 29". Then there's SpecialEd, who's "mantra" is "Innovate or die" but they only started to try and innovate once the FSR patent ran out, other than that they sat on their laurels and let their humongous buying power, shops in most major cities etc, take a large segment of the market.
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