Tuesday, May 8, 2012

No man's land.

I'm in a pickle.
Currently,nobody makes a trailbike frame that ticks every single little box on my list.I was riding,and do still own a fully custom Ventana frame that fucking damn near filled all those boxes.65 degree headtube with a 160mm fork,13'' BB height,17'' chainstays,23.5'' top tube and a somewhat pedalable 72 degree seattube.The only problem with said frame is that fact it pedals like dogshit,has a "big can" RP23 out back which makes quick work of the 6.5'' of travel,and the fact it has over 6'' of travel.I simply do not need anything over 5'' for where I live and how I like to ride.With that thought in mind and lots of time spent riding my hardtail,I decided to make the somewhat expensive leap into what those limey folk over the pond call a "hardcore hardtail".I snatched up a Ragley Bagger.Strikingly similar geometry to my beloved Ventana,but with only the slight flex of quality Reynolds steel to soften the blows out back.I've only got about 25 miles of ride time on the fucker,but her and my brain are currently entangled in a love/hate relationship.I fucking love being able to stand up and climb hills not having to give one care to my suspension eating copious amounts of the power i'm putting down.I love the fact I can pump the shit out of every little bump,dip,and roller on the trail.And I fucking love how it feels overall,buuuuuut,I can not for the life of me hang onto a line when shit starts getting rough.Most of you are going "well,fucking duh,you're on a hardtail."It's not that,because I can ride the same shit on my little 4x hardtail and be just fucking dandy.It feels like it has something to do with having an 18.25'' seat tube and a 160mm fork.I feel kinda high up.The front end is raked out there to all hell and the BB is low-ish,but I can't help but feel like my center of gravity is off.I'm not planted enough to make the bike do what I wanna do.Then there's cornering.I have nothing to push aginst,and under banger corners my effective headtube angle is like 70 and all my weight is sent forwards due to most,if not all of my 160mm being eaten up.The rear end becomes unweighted,I blow the turn,and end up nearly ball riding my top tube.This one's a weird one,she is.

All I want is a short travel(4 to 5''),slack,low,long and somewhat light bike.All with a top tube and seat tube length I can pedal.I soon hope to be on a third hand Specialized Stumpy Evo from 2011,set up with a 160mm fork and i'm wondering if it may be the closest answer to my hopes.Only time and what Specialized has left in scratch and dent frames will tell.To be continued...

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