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NSMB - 2021 - Hardtail Thread

Dec. 31, 2020, 6:47 a.m.
Posts: 605
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

Time for a 2021 HT thread? Why not! I've been riding hardtails a lot lately and expect 2021 to see a lot more steel is real action. I was losing my interest in going as fast as possible anyways and enjoying the challenge the lack of rear suspension provides before the pandemic hit. With COVID in the picture going slower and taking fewer chances made even more sense. The hardtail is perfect for that.

There are lots of good reasons to ride hardtails:

- simpler

- less maintenance

- cheaper [in theory]

...but, the main reason I ride them is they are a lot of fun.

Here's to another great year of hardtail shredding. :-)

Dec. 31, 2020, 7:54 a.m.
Posts: 780
Joined: Jan. 31, 2005

My HT got almost exclusive use through the first half of 2020. It was perfect but as I got more and more comfortable on it and what it could do I started riding faster and faster eventually getting back to FS speeds. By the end of the summer I was a bag of bones and got a new FS bike. Wow that was a nice change too but it took a lot of getting used to. But seasons change and now I want to build my HT back up into something new, maybe a rigid fork or less aggressive tires intending on much longer rides? The circle of life I guess.

Dec. 31, 2020, 8:24 a.m.
Posts: 605
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

Posted by: craw

My HT got almost exclusive use through the first half of 2020. It was perfect but as I got more and more comfortable on it and what it could do I started riding faster and faster eventually getting back to FS speeds. By the end of the summer I was a bag of bones and got a new FS bike. Wow that was a nice change too but it took a lot of getting used to. But seasons change and now I want to build my HT back up into something new, maybe a rigid fork or less aggressive tires intending on much longer rides? The circle of life I guess.

Some of my bikes get "perfected" and their setup never changes again. Other bikes see lots of tweaks and upgrades. No wrong answer as long as you keep riding them. My only firm bike rule these days is if it doesn't get used it gets sold.

It's not the ideal frame for it, but I'm thinking when spring rolls around and I'm in the mood to service the Cotic I should turn it into a SS bike and finally give that a try. 

I can recommend Rekons if you want a tire that can crush out big days without a lot of drag yet still shred the trails surprisingly well. A rigid fork could be an interesting change....if you go that route just keep in mind something overly stiff could be very punishing if you want to still ride trails. Rigid fork comfort varies considerably.

Dec. 31, 2020, 1:29 p.m.
Posts: 96
Joined: Feb. 13, 2018

Posted by: Vikb

Posted by: craw

I can recommend Rekons if you want a tire that can crush out big days without a lot of drag yet still shred the trails surprisingly well. A rigid fork could be an interesting change....if you go that route just keep in mind something overly stiff could be very punishing if you want to still ride trails. Rigid fork comfort varies considerably.

+1 for the Rekons as a rear in 2.6. Surprisingly capable for a fast rolling (but a bit drifty - in a fun way) tire. I also found the 2.6 Dissector to be a great compromise between fast rolling and good cornering grip. Also, the 2.6 Dissector doesn’t seem to have the same pre-mature side knob wear that plagues the 2.4 (at least in my experience).

Dec. 31, 2020, 2:31 p.m.
Posts: 25
Joined: March 28, 2017

i mean my bikes not going to get here for a couple weeks.

Jan. 1, 2021, 10:41 p.m.
Posts: 1198
Joined: Nov. 21, 2002

2020 was a weird year for me, and I rode less last year than many years previous, especially odd since I felt my riding had progressed considerably in 2017 and 2018. And I had no hardtail in 2020.

My issues started in late 2019 with a couple of injuries that kept me off the bike for a while. Seizing that time off, I decided to try the whole smaller FS trail bike thing. The early days of Covid hit, and working on the front lines, I knew I didn't want to injure myself again, but more importantly did not want to further increase the workload on my team with our patients that needed care. All's that to say I probably didn't give the FS bike a fair shake.

With the additional precautions, extra time, and also having the kiddos around more, priorities shifted. So I felt it prudent to simplify my quiver.

So here's to putting 2020 in the rear view, and having a hardtail again for 2021 (and it was not easy to find something suitable in these covid times). NS Eccentric Evo 29 aluminum with a DVO Diamond set at 140mm, mullet wheels with 27.5x2.8 out back, 10 speed Shimano Sunrace 11-46 drivetrain (though I'm trying to source out the Microshift Advent X drivetrain), old XTR levers paired to 4 pot Deore front caliper and XT rear

Jan. 2, 2021, 5:43 a.m.
Posts: 605
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

The NS looks nice. I'm glad you found a bike given the supply chain issues going around. Very stealthy! Have fun getting out on the bike more in 2021.

I think riding responsibly during the pandemic makes a lot of sense for pretty much everyone. No need to challenge the medical system on the staffing nor patient end of things. Rather than go as fast as possible I'm more interested in riding a hardtail with flow through the chunk and cleaning all the tech. It's equally fun and challenging, but slower speeds when less dramatic crashes when the inevitable get off happens.

Jan. 3, 2021, 2:03 p.m.
Posts: 51
Joined: Aug. 13, 2017

Vik - how are you finding the the BFe Max?

Has anyone else ridden one or a Solaris Max?

Jan. 3, 2021, 2:10 p.m.
Posts: 51
Joined: Aug. 13, 2017

I've just rebuilt my OG Krampus as a geared HT (from rigid SS) and really enjoyed my first ride back on it the other day.  I will try and get some photos over the next few days.

Jan. 3, 2021, 3:45 p.m.
Posts: 605
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

Posted by: fartymarty

Vik - how are you finding the the BFe Max?

Has anyone else ridden one or a Solaris Max?

Here's my review ---> https://vikapprovedblog.wordpress.com/2020/12/30/cotic-bfemax-review-part-1/

https://youtu.be/-bh9kf7dJGY

HTP review ^^^ of the SolarisMAX. He's got a BFeMAX review as well.

The BFeMAX is a lot of bike and a lot of fun to ride. I purposefully took it to the extreme in size and fork to experiment with the geo. It rides surprisingly well on less difficult terrain and eats up the harder tech. The main downside is it's not the kind of bike that's going to pop off every root and rock at slow speeds. You need to get it rolling for it to come alive and get airborne.

I'll be keen to see your revamped OG Krampus. I've got some new bars and a -1 deg headset to put into mine. I need to overcome my laziness and install them next rainy day.


 Last edited by: Vikb on Jan. 3, 2021, 3:50 p.m., edited 1 time in total.
Jan. 3, 2021, 3:49 p.m.
Posts: 605
Joined: Sept. 10, 2012

Last hardtail ride ^^^ of 2020.

First hardtail ride ^^^ of 2021.

Jan. 3, 2021, 11:32 p.m.
Posts: 51
Joined: Aug. 13, 2017

I watched both the HTP reviews but am new to his channel so still trying to get a feel for his reviews.  He seemed to really like the Solaris but was on the wrong size BFe which I'm sure didn't help.

I'm fine with bikes with long rears (Krampus has 446 short, Murmur 445, old Keewee Cromo 8 is 470) so that doesn't bother me.

I've got a -2 in my Krampus and wouldn't ride it without.  I would go even slacker if someone made one.

Jan. 4, 2021, 1:48 a.m.
Posts: 51
Joined: Aug. 13, 2017

Tried to upload a photo of the Krampus but didn't work - anyone got any tips on how to upload photos?

OG Krampus Jan 2021


 Last edited by: fartymarty on Jan. 4, 2021, 1:52 a.m., edited 1 time in total.
Jan. 4, 2021, 2:38 a.m.
Posts: 1002
Joined: May 11, 2018

Posted by: fartymarty

Tried to upload a photo of the Krampus but didn't work - anyone got any tips on how to upload photos?

OG Krampus Jan 2021

You need to copy the address of the picture specifically not the whole photo album web page if that makes sense.


 Last edited by: RAHrider on Jan. 4, 2021, 2:52 a.m., edited 1 time in total.
Jan. 4, 2021, 4:04 a.m.
Posts: 51
Joined: Aug. 13, 2017

thanks, m

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