Described by Transition as a "big all-mountain bike", the new Blindside is a 7.6lbs frame (taking a pound off the weight of the older frame); and designed around 170mm/190mm travel. Although more pedal friendly it is clearly designed to be able to take big hits. The 2010 Blindside is a refined, well-thought-out bike & will probably go a long way to expanding Transition's fan-base beyond its traditional Pacific NW following.
More details inside,
The Blindside in the TBC warehouse waiting patiently to be let out to play
The purpose of this article will be to overview objective features of Transition's new Blindside. There are no ride impression details as yet. A test bike will be shortly made available and ride impressions, photos and videos will be forthcoming in September. I plan to ride this bike in Whistler, Galbraith, North Vancouver, Squamish, Silver Star, drag it into the alpine and where-ever else I happen to go over the next few months.
38.5lbs as built with 180mm coil front and rear travel
Geometry Highlights (more here)
The allen bolted chip on the rear shock lets you adjust travel from 6.5 to 7.5"
- 65 deg HA/72.5 deg STA
- In the medium size -> 1168mm wheelbase/436mm (46"/14.2") chainstay length
- 14.2" BB
A familiar face graces the straight seat-tube; tall leggy riders who need to raise and drop the seatpost a lot will rejoice
Enough clearance for a 2.8" tire
- At 7.6lbs this is not an overly heavy frame! For context, a 180mm coil front/rear build with downhill tires builds to 38.5lbs. That's a bike you can lug around uphill without too much issue.
- Geometry stays the same as the 2009 Blindside
- Welding is much cleaner with smooth surfaces on the welds
- New hydroformed tubes (toptube and downtube) - increases strength while decreasing weight
- Tapered internally welded headtube
- Using a removable "chip", rear travel is adjustable from 6.5" to 7.5"
- While designed for 180mm travel front forks, the Blindside is compatible with 200mm and 160mm/170mm front forks.
- Maximum rear tire clearance of 2.8
- Completely straight seat tube. Can accommodate long seat posts yet drop the seat all the way down too.
Gratuitous head-tube shot showing the beautiful lines of the hydroformed head-tube/down-tube junction
ISCG05 chainguide tabs and a 73mm x 51mm BB shell for chainline that can accommodate an optional front derailleur and double ring setup
Specifications and detailed geometry numbers for the Blindside from the TBC website
Beautifully thought out cable-routing brought to you by Sam (check out the chainstay routed cable). Only one option for rear ends now - the common 135x10mm standard
More clean cable routing via top of down-tube
Video of Kevin Menard going over the Blindside-
Interview with Kevin Menard - 2010 Transition Blindside - part 1:
- Introduction - new tubeset results in a frame weighing one pound less than older Blindsides
- Big All-Mountain concept (0:27)
- Tapered head-tube (1:18 )
- Head-set choices (internal or external; possibility of zero-stack or recessed cups) (1:30)
Interview with Kevin Menard - 2010 Transition Blindside - part 2:
- Headtube/downtube hydroforming and internal welding
- New rocker and adjustable travel chip (0:37)
- Refined tubing/smooth surfaces (1:03)
- Cable routing (1:35)
- Straight seat-tube (2:08 )
And just because this video is sick and because I won't be able to ever flow a trail quite like this here's a repeat of last year's Blindside in action: