Same story here- Short chain stays, (sub 17"), slack head angle, (68° with a 140mm fork), and a 142mm X 12mm through axle rear end for stiffness. Dropper post compatible, yadda, yadda, yadda....
While more choices in this category are fine with me, I find a couple of things jump to mind: First, is this kind of a fad? I remember 26"ers went through an "ultra-short" chain stay phase in the early 90's and there were several reasons that idea was abandoned. Are we going to see that happen again here with these crazy-short stayed 29"ers? It makes you wonder if the Trek Stache isn't so crazy now with its 17.5" stays and slacker angles up front. It just seems strange that Trek is the "odd man out" in this area. They either got it right or are crazy.
Secondly- isn't it odd that, with a few exceptions, most of these bikes are steel? Makes me wonder if the designers like the failure mode better with steel considering the use group. Hmm...... I could be totally wrong there. It is also interesting to note that Niner's first proto of this bike they ever showed was aluminum.
|Image courtesy of Dirt Rag|
Well, this cat is outta the bag, so I can talk about this a bit. I signed a non disclosure agreement back in February when I actually saw these rigs in the flesh at Frostbike. I gotta tell ya- it has been hard not to talk about this!
Basically, Salsa called in Dave Weagle of Split Pivot fame and consulted with him to integrate his design into a new range of Salsa full suspension 29"ers. Still dubbed Spearfish and Horsethief, with the same user intentions intact, these new bikes are going to be pretty cool. Split Pivot is a concentric pivot at the rear axle which helps divide the braking forces from the suspension forces. That helps keep the suspension active during braking, and that means more traction and more control. DW Link designs also can have varying levels of "anti-squat" depending upon the finer details of the design for any particular client of Mr. Weagle. So that may mean the new Salsa rigs will have some cool traits during climbing. I'm sure all the fine details will hit when Saddledrive happens next month and some of the other dealers get schwing-dinged out there by QBP to try them. I'll be interested to hear what they think. Me? pfft! I can't afford to get out there, so I'll be lucky to get to a demo, like last year. We'll see.
Salsa has more up there sleeves for 2014, so this isn't all you'll be hearing from that camp. And there will be more from other companies soon as well. "Press Camp" is happening in Utah right now, and more private dealer shows will be coming which are sprinkled throughout these high Summer months. Stay tuned for more....