Pole Taival: Long and Slack 29" Steel Hardtail. Tall guys please step inside...

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Pole Taival: Long and Slack 29" Steel Hardtail. Tall guys please step inside...
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Posted: Jun 18, 2018 at 12:23 Quote
Greetings,

This is a public service announcement to the general biking community but those of you who are tall/long may find this particularly interesting. If you are 6'1" or under you may not suffer from this issue (rejoice) but those of us who are taller or have longer extremities can have a hard time finding a frame which REALLY fits us well, personally I am 6'8" with a 7'2" wingspan and there are only a handful of bikes on the market which come close to offering a reasonable fit.

Currently I ride an XXL Hightower LT and overall really enjoy it but a perfect world I would add some more reach and make the seat tube angle much steeper. At this point in time I am looking to build up a hardtail my old Banshee Morphine has been retired to brewery-hopping duty and is also used by my friends who don't have bikes. While researching longer/beefier 29" hardtails there are a few notable offerings: Kona Honzo, Transition Vanquish, Santa Cruz Chameleon, Guerrilla Gravity Pedalhead, Pipedream Moxie, and Pole Taival. I added their specs to a spreadsheet along with my old (retro) XL Banshee Morphine and XXL Hightower LT.
Long Slack 29 Hardtail Comparison

Personally with the very long reach, steep ST angle, and slack HT angle the Taival really appeals to me and I feel other tall riders would agree. The compliance of steel seems to be a great fit for a hardtail and it's durability is appealing given my aggressive riding style. Features like boost spacing, a threaded BB, and 3 water bottle mounts are all appreciated.

I plan to get my hands on one of these frames later this summer so I will follow up with more details, pictures, and riding impressions but in the meantime I wanted to start a discussion to bring this to the attention of others!

Cheers!
Evan

Here is their website: https://polebicycles.com/taival/

Pole Taival
Pole Taival
Pole Taival

Posted: Jun 18, 2018 at 14:11 Quote
Damn bro, you're 6'8 with a 7'2 wingspan? and you ride an XXL hightower LT?

I'm 6'1, not sure on wingspan, but i can comfortably ride an XXL HTLT as well, although right now i ride an XL with a 60mm stem (same reach but shorter wheelbase)

Sorry, i know not a helpful comment, just really astounding to me.

Are Poles relatively easy to get over to the US? I like the look and geo of the evolink but the price plus getting it shipped here with import taxes drove me away.

Posted: Jun 18, 2018 at 16:36 Quote
sosburn wrote:
Damn bro, you're 6'8 with a 7'2 wingspan? and you ride an XXL hightower LT?

I'm 6'1, not sure on wingspan, but i can comfortably ride an XXL HTLT as well, although right now i ride an XL with a 60mm stem (same reach but shorter wheelbase)

Sorry, i know not a helpful comment, just really astounding to me.

Are Poles relatively easy to get over to the US? I like the look and geo of the evolink but the price plus getting it shipped here with import taxes drove me away.

Here is a nice Evolink for sale in the US, great deal too IMO: https://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/2306737/

The Taival frame is listed at 564.52 Euro and shipping is 50E so 614.52E total, factor in the 1.16 USD-EUR conversion and it will cost $714.84 for it to arrive in the US.

Import taxes can vary depending on how the item is declared but assuming Pole declares the frame at full value, according the to US International Trade Commission it may be subject to a 3.9% import tax since the frame is from a NTR/MFN country. FWIW the USITC had bicycle split into "valued over $600" and "valued under $600" but the rates were both 3.9%

So the highest price it could be shipped to your door including import taxes is $742.72
Honestly, not bad considering it will cost a Finnish resident 731 Euros to have it shipped to their door (565E +135E taxes +31E shipping).

As for my size: Yes, I am huge. I dwarf the XXL HTLT...

Posted: Jun 18, 2018 at 19:21 Quote
I’m 6’ and I’m not super on board with pole level reach measurements but for someone your height I think the Taival would be as good as it gets. I don’t see the appeal of a 1300mm wheelbase for my height but I think it would probably fit a giant dude well. Also I think slacker hardtails are stupid fun.

Posted: Jun 18, 2018 at 21:25 Quote
I’m 6’5 and find my 500 reach on my Capra perfectly adequate so I’m a little skeptical on the jumbo sized bikes but I’d certainly like to try one with an open mind. It definitely has me curious.

Posted: Jun 19, 2018 at 2:49 Quote
Tunnel vision, ignore the sceptics and get your paws on the longest rig you can. I would also contact Pole and Nicolei and Geometron bikes and explain your size and issues with bike fit. They may offer to help with something not available on the shelf. They may not but hey, if you don't ask you don't get.

Until a recent accident , at 5'10 I was riding a medium Geometron with 500 mm reach a 1300mm wheelbase. It was awesome.

The only negative I see with big 29ers is that the majority still utilise a 148 back end when for big aggressive riders, 157 would be a better option.

Posted: Jun 19, 2018 at 12:08 Quote
6'7" here with a matching span. Just had a Swarf Spline 29 built up with a 530 sagged reach and 1285 WB. Pretty much as big as you can go with a Reynolds 853 downtube. Could happily go bigger but having a bike that actually fits me know is amazing. Still have an XL Cotic Solaris and 2014 Trance.


Posted: Jul 5, 2018 at 20:20 Quote
I have one on order as well (Aug delivery). I’ve never ridden such a long bike but I’m really looking forward to seeing what the Taival can do! I think I’m going to try it in 27.5+ mode since I have a spare wheel set sitting around

Posted: Jul 7, 2018 at 20:43 Quote
I’m 6’4” with a 6’9” wingspan and I’ve got an XL Pole Evolink 140. It fits me flawlessly. The Taival might be an improvement over the Hightower LT, but homie if you’re gonna be that size then you’re gonna need a custom bike.

Maybe something like this Nicolai G13 XXL? https://www.pinkbike.com/news/eurobike-media-days-randoms-2018.html

Posted: Sep 19, 2018 at 14:04 Quote
@tunnelvision

Did you end up getting the Taival? Any more details on it and ride impressions? Any photos as well?

I’m looking at getting this frame soon and want to get an idea for how someone who had it likes it so far.

Thanks!

Posted: Sep 19, 2018 at 18:21 Quote
joseph42698 wrote:
@tunnelvision

Did you end up getting the Taival? Any more details on it and ride impressions? Any photos as well?

I’m looking at getting this frame soon and want to get an idea for how someone who had it likes it so far.

Thanks!

I have not received or ordered my Taival yet but it is close to happening. I am in communication with Pole as we speak regarding my current Evolink 150 frame and trading it in for the Evolink 158 or Machine. I love the bike but since the 150 is the older Evolink based on 27.5" wheels (I run mine with 29") the BB is high and the stack is ~45mm shorter than the current crop of Evolinks.

I have 2 months of riding on my Evolink so far it is a very impressive bike in many ways and gets me fired up for the Taivail since the geo is very similar overall (Reach, H/A, S/A, Chainstays). You can check out my observations and build of the Evolink here, the riding impressions should be pretty telling of what to expect with the Taival (minus the suspension) Smile
https://www.pinkbike.com/forum/listcomments/?threadid=208030&pagenum=1#commentid6662957

Posted: Sep 20, 2018 at 15:49 Quote
Hey guys I'm 6'6" and the biggest problem I have with frames is getting the seat high enough. On most frames a 170 mil dropper at the min insertion line is still to low, does anyone else have this problem or a good solution to it?

Posted: Sep 21, 2018 at 7:21 Quote
mrgill wrote:
Hey guys I'm 6'6" and the biggest problem I have with frames is getting the seat high enough. On most frames a 170 mil dropper at the min insertion line is still to low, does anyone else have this problem or a good solution to it?
I run the 9point8 200mm dropper and it is bottomed out (as low as possible) in my Evolink and it is a few millimeters higher than I need with a 35/36 inseam. There shouldn't be any issues fitting any dropper in the Taival, which is the bike I assume you are talking about given the thread, so the more travel the dropper has the better.

Posted: Sep 21, 2018 at 7:34 Quote
DIStroyinmasses wrote:
Gona order one myself in the coming weeks for a winter hardcore HT. Going to re-use my capra 29er build kit. Im 6ft and currently ride a Capra 29er in large with a 465 reach and 35mm stem. I feel I would enjoy a little bit more reach. Dont know how much to push though. The medium at 480 doesn't seem to push it enough to really try out the POLE extreme geo. But the 510 on the large is a +45 change from my capra.
God damm I have being 6ft. Always bang in the middle of M and L sizes. Or L and XL in the case of most brands.
The experimentalist in me wants to go big. Cant even find bikes with that much reach in bike shops to try out for feel Frown

You can franken-setup bikes to mimic the geo, for example throw on a super long stem to mimic the 510mm reach. But keep in mind the seatpost angle and it's relation to reach and effective top tube. On my old XXL Hightower LT it had ~40mm less reach (BB-HT) but since the seatpost was so slack when the seat was in pedaling position it was increasing the seat-to-HT "cockpit reach." The YT's ST isn't as slack as the Hightower but it isn't as steep as the Pole so something to calculate and compare to your sizing options.

Another thing to note is stem length and bar sweep, 45-50mm stems are pretty common but you can probably size down to a 30mm which can save 20mm there, bar sweep would add another 5mm or so, same thing with sliding the seat forward. These little tweaks can add up to a noticeable difference.

If the decision isn't clear and you are between sizes I would go for the larger size since tweaking the the cockpit geo down usually offers better handling characteristics than trying to make the bike bigger than it is, like running a shorter stem vs long stem.

Posted: Dec 23, 2018 at 16:34 Quote
Just found this thread while going down a nerdhole of hardcore hardtail geo's. 6ft4 here with a 19" wingspan, I've been looking at the Pole Taival as a good all arounder, but also the Pipedream Moxie as a bit more of a rowdy bike. Might be worth checking out for some of you other giants.
http://www.pipedreamcycles.com/shop/moxie/?v=7516fd43adaa

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