Hardtails, Clif Bars, Full Suspension, and a Steel Cross Bike:

About a month ago, Matt from California stopped by the shop with a broken bike.  He was on a week long trip to do some mountain biking and was in dire need of a bike.  I couldn’t fix his bike on the spot, so I sent him out on mine.  At the end of the trip, he ended up buying the frame from me.  Matt works at Clif Bar and sent lots of goodies for long rides.  Another customer of mine, George T., also works at Clif.  He purchased one of my bikes last year and has sent packages my way.  Chris D. just order a frame and fork this week, which will make my third bike at the Clif office in California.  Thanks to all three of those guys for the support and food!

For the next couple of weeks, I rode an old steel hardtail I built last year.  I really dialed into the geometry and fit of my ti hardtail as I had been riding it exclusively this season.  I wasn’t digging on the older hardtail even though I thought I would.  The unsagged geometry featured 16.7″ chainstays, 68.25 degree headtube, 70 degree effective seattube (curved seattube) and a 12.5″ bottom bracket.  My titanium bike had 17.1″ chainstays, 68.6 degree headtube, 72 degree seattube, and a 12.25″ bottom bracket.  It also had a bit longer toptube and a tapered steer tube fork.  Both bikes had the same build kit and 120mm of travel up front.

I had the tubes, shock, and rear triangle for a full suspension bike sitting in a box since the spring.  The sale of the hardtail prompted me to get busy on the full suspension frame.  My goal was to build a bike with the same geometry and feel as my titanium bike but with 4 inches of travel in the rear.  I used the same build kit off the hardtail.

Geo is 17.3″ chainstays, 69.5 degree headtube, 72 effective seattube, and a 13.3″ bottom bracket.  All measurements are unsagged.  Because the chainstays are so much shorter than the stock Ventana geo and the bottom bracket is also lower, I have to perform many checks throughout the build to ensure everything is going to function.

The Frame fixture confirms 438mmish chainstays.


I’m also rounding the bend on a steel cross bike this week.  Next up are a couple of titanium frames.

6 responses to “Hardtails, Clif Bars, Full Suspension, and a Steel Cross Bike”

  1. BLC says:

    ummm…. What trails are those?

  2. BLT says:

    well I aint never bin there!

  3. Thomas says:

    George told me the Matt story!. The alliance density in the east bay is off the chart! 4 within a mile. Should make a nice picture!

  4. George says:

    I am so happy that Chris is getting on of your bikes, Erik. I was pushing hard for him to go that route and I know he will not regret it. But, waiting until NAHBS…that will be hard. Look forward to seeing you at the show.

  5. Carl Strong says:

    That looks like 439 to me 🙂