Enduro/AM - The Weight Game

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Enduro/AM - The Weight Game
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Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:02 Quote
whattheheel wrote:
R-M-R, you are one hell of a nerd and a big bike nerd and I love it!! Thanks for the great reads! Salute

I really feel like the quality of convo really has increased since R-M-R joined the party.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:06 Quote
seraph wrote:
The interesting thing, that even surprises me, is that I think that the Lefty is still a viable suspension platform. It got a lot of guff from the industry and consumers over the years but when it works, it works well. Once you learn how to work on them, they're not even that hard to service.
The Lefty probably surprised me more than any fork I've ever ridden... I thought it looked terrible and expected it to be as flexy as a wet noodle but it actually rode pretty damn well. Not sure how much they've changed over the years but if they've kept up with damper developments, it's a surprisingly good chassis. Couldn't own personally but I give em credit.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:11 Quote
I would ride a Lefty Ocho. They look great!

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:12 Quote
The biggest impact on wider adoption of the Lefty was it's proprietary hub. Well, that and it's propertiary head tube as well. When buying a fork requires that you have a 1.5 head tube or 321 adapter AND a special hub that needs laced to your rim of choice, suddenly things get much more expensive.

If it was just a matter of buying a Lefty that could be compatible with any other bike, I think it would've done much better.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:14 Quote
PHeller wrote:
I'll give you this much, the Structure design looks better than both, and if it had some sort of design line connect the head tube to the top of the front linkage, it'd look nearly normal.

Unfortunately, as I'm sure you know, selling a bike that is completely proprietary must've been a challenge. Not unlike the Lefty (although it didn't need a special frame, too.)

• Had I been given full design freedom, the bike would've looked different. I did what I could.
• I didn't find it terribly difficult and my message resonated with those to whom I spoke. The challenge will be for the current company to figure it out for themselves and, critically, to recoup their costs. Let's just say I would've run the business very differently.
• My only association with the company is now via lawyers.

I believe it's best to integrate the linkage into the frame. If you think back to bolt-on rear suspension, such as the Manitou FS or Shockster, I see current forks as a refined version of this. We wouldn't put up with it on the rear.


whattheheel wrote:
R-M-R, you are one hell of a nerd and a big bike nerd and I love it!! Thanks for the great reads! Salute

Fab


dirtnapped wrote:
I really feel like the quality of convo really has increased since R-M-R joined the party.

It just took a little hiatus from 2007 - 2018. Wink


seraph wrote:
[ ... ] the Lefty is still a viable suspension platform.
badbadleroybrown wrote:
The Lefty [ ... ] actually rode pretty damn well. Not sure how much they've changed over the years but if they've kept up with damper developments, it's a surprisingly good chassis.

Cannondale has always done a good chassis, often let down down by the internals. Even the Headshok had merit, in the context of its time.


whattheheel wrote:
So I am winning the fork game then??

You're certainly winning something! Geek Seriously, though, I love 'em. A Tioga Spyder saddle might be the final touch they need.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:20 Quote
The blue Structure with the frame pivot points painted black was pretty genius styling to hide the pivot.

Even if it looked awesome, traditional, whatever, it'd still be a hard pill to swallow to say "we're going to include in your frame price the price of front suspension that you can never change, even as we, the company giving your this transcendent experience is working to improve it and the product we're selling you today might be obsolete within a year."

That's what happened with the Lefty. It wasn't just suspension technology rapidly changing, it was everything else too.

EDIT: Imagine if the Trust forks could only be used on a "Trust Frame", you can bet they'd fail in a heartbeat. They are finding success (if you want to call it that) because you can equip them to any bike with nearly any wheelset.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:24 Quote
PHeller wrote:
[ ... ] front suspension that you can never change, even as we, the company giving your this transcendent experience is working to improve it and the product we're selling you today might be obsolete within a year [ ... ]

That hasn't stopped rear suspension from selling.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:27 Quote
I think consumers are more comfortable with the idea that a given design will be improved by a $400 (or $1200 Eek ) shock vs front suspension which needs to be completely swapped.

Plus, if geometry changes, I can swap all my parts from my old frame to my new geometry frame. An integrated front/rear suspension frame means a much large outlay of money to try new geometry (or more or less travel).

The Adroit, Trust, etc at least allow their owners to say "eh, I'm not feeling it, I'm going back to a normal fork" with relative ease and low(ish) expense. Integrated front/rear suspension frames don't allow that, and to some extent Leftys with their hubs and previously special steerer didn't either.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:29 Quote
PHeller wrote:
I think consumers are more comfortable with the idea that a given design will be improved by a $400 (or $1200 Eek ) shock vs front suspension which needs to be completely swapped.

Plus, if geometry changes, I can swap all my parts from my old frame to my new geometry frame. An integrated front/rear suspension frame means a much large outlay of money to try new geometry (or more or less travel).

That hasn't stopped rear suspension from selling.

Also, I added flip-chips and eccentrics in the pivots to easily alter the front suspension properties.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:32 Quote
RMR, what Structure was proposing was "a bike that didn't need replacing and will meet all current and future trends." That's just not realistic. Dare I say because so much of the industry is driven by shop bros who swap bikes and parts every season.

Furthermore, that's what Cannondale hoped would happen with the Lefty products - "It's so great you won't every swap it for anything else." Then the next year they'd release a new damper. Then the following year the product would be dead.

The Ocho is getting there. It's soooo close. If it had a way of using any old traditional boost hub I think it'd be a major player against the SID and 32/34 SC.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:36 Quote
PHeller wrote:
RMR, what Structure was proposing was "a bike that didn't need replacing and will meet all current and future trends." That's just not realistic. Dare I say because so much of the industry is driven by shop bros who swap bikes and parts every season.

Furthermore, that's what Cannondale hoped would happen with the Lefty products - "It's so great you won't every swap it for anything else."

I never made any such claim and I never instructed them to make any such claim. I can't control anything said since my departure.

You can swap the shock, making it no different from the situation we readily accept with rear suspension.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:48 Quote
Like I said, it's not just suspension we change frames to improve, it's fit, geometry, etc. Those are all things that change with the trends. The Structure can't be a XC bike this season and Enduro bike next, where as I can swap between a Message and a Shout and a Lyrik depending which frame I like this minute.

What I'm saying is, the Structure is a really WILD design and it looks pretty good considering, but I don't think the market is ready for something that integrated yet. Even if it does allow for a wide variety of adjustments and shock changes.

We may be inching towards wider adoption of alternative suspension designs, but the industry has been pretty opposed to overly integrated designs. Hence why Trust can succeed where Lefty was lackluster and Structure will undoubtedly struggle.

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:54 Quote
As a fun theoretical bit of hyperbole;

RMR, if I was a rich dude who came to you and said "I will pay you more money than you have ever made to help me develop a roller bearing equipped telescoping fork." Would you be interested?

Or would you rather work on linkage fork designs?

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:55 Quote
I'd take your money & run lol

Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 11:57 Quote
Maybe that's why there are lawyers involved Razz


 
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