Knolly Podium - A Closer Look

Sep 11, 2013
by Knolly Bikes  

Rarely, to our knowledge, does a designer of a premium DH rig see the bike manufacturing process from front to back. Everything from designing the bike on the computer to riding the finished product on the terrain it was built for. Noel Buckley, owner and designer of Knolly Bikes, has been designing bikes for over ten years. His first frame design was the V-Tach in 2004 followed by Endorphin, Delirium, Podium, Chilcotin and just recently the new Warden.

His original V-Tach design was simply to build himself a bike for terrain he enjoyed riding on the North Shore Mountains of British Columbia. That same design, or at least the patented & proprietary 4x4 suspension, is what has led to the current Podium DH frame. Noel is the very first rider to test any new model. He takes his bikes, such as the Podium, to the terrain he wants the bike to perform on, specifically in this case Cypress Mountain in West Vancouver. We often get asked how the Podium came to fruition and what makes the bike what it is. So we thought we would get it from the man himself as he talks about the journey of the Podium, a couple technical features about the design and his thoughts on the future of Knolly Bikes.

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Garett Buehler and Linden Finiak give us their impression on the Podium mixed in with some shred time:
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  Ryan Berrecloth dropping into one of his built lines deep in the North Shore.

Knolly Bikes Announces Loyalty Program
  Arguably the Podium is the bike of choice for the team riders. We always love seeing photos of Garett Buehler because he's always having fun.

  157 x 12mm thru axle

Whistler BC
  James Doerfling airing out of a wall ride in the Whistler alpine.

  ISGC Chain Guide Mounting and hydro-formed one piece tubular chain stay.

  Garett...just being Garett.

  Built in fork bumpers.

  Every time we see photos of James wide open it puts a smile on our face. No shortage of shredding when James is on the scene.

  Closer shot of the 4x4 linkage exclusive to Knolly Bikes.

  Garett sending a big line in the interior of BC.


Thanks for reading and we hope to see you on the trails! For more info check out the website at knollybikes.com.

Contact your local dealer or distributor for further details - info@knollybikes.com

Action photos: Margus Riga - www.margusriga.com


102 Comments

  • 81 3
 Besides the fact this bike looks amazing... there is like 5 future POD's in here!!! Love it
  • 7 1
 make it six!!
  • 22 3
 Oh right, I forgot the close up of the chainstay!!!
  • 4 34
flag MortifiedPenguin (Sep 11, 2013 at 12:50) (Below Threshold)
 @mo town did you wait for that response just to make that joke?
  • 10 1
 Actually no! But it was kind of Smart-Assish of me I admit.... Lesson learned lol
  • 7 2
 One day, I'll own a podium!...
  • 25 1
 One day, I'll be on a podium......
  • 12 3
 I had a podium collapse on me!
  • 5 12
flag Quesadilla34 (Sep 11, 2013 at 20:35) (Below Threshold)
 I deffinitely love knolly bikes, this one uncluded, but doesnt look like a demo and a stinky had a baby? Like almost exactly that blend! Haha
  • 5 12
flag Quesadilla34 (Sep 11, 2013 at 20:37) (Below Threshold)
 @kona the tank, you deffinitely picked that name suitably, hahaha, i think thats what everyone equates konas to in the bike world.
  • 7 1
 Aside from the whole carbon frame thing Kona have going now.
Stinkys = tank , but Operators are a different breed.
  • 1 5
flag KONAtheTANK (Sep 12, 2013 at 13:09) (Below Threshold)
 Can't wait, getting a carbon operator this month hopefully!! Let you know then Smile Wink
  • 3 5
 Haha, awesome dude. U wont even no ur on a kona!
  • 2 1
 hey, this might sound dumb, but i can't find prices to a new podium complete bike anywhere online. does anyone know the price?
  • 48 3
 Pinchbolt on rear axle, replaceable USG. Nice rearward axlepath. No sideload on damper. Raw finish, not overstyled. One of the great bikes.
  • 25 2
 a Knolly will be my next bike.
  • 8 0
 after hearing the tr250 got discontinued, I'm now looking at this bike for my big purchase next year
  • 2 0
 Look at mine... Christmas should come early!
  • 2 0
 Double check that. I've heard that it will be continued. Seems to be some confusion about this.
  • 1 0
 They cant discontinue it! They just cant!
  • 4 0
 The new 2014 TR450 which can be configured as either a 200mm DH bike or 180mm mini-DH bike replaces both the TR450 and TR250. One frame, two bikes. Also, you have your choice of running either 26" or 27.5" wheels. www.pinkbike.com/news/Prototypes-New-Parts-and-More-Day-Three-Eurobike-2013.html
  • 1 0
 I guess the only reason I'm complaining about them discontinuing the TR250 is cus I'm thinking it was a lot cheaper. So now with this big fancy adjusting bike, wont the price for it be a lot higher?
  • 1 0
 There is only a $100 difference in price between the 2013 TR450 and TR250 frame. The large price difference between the complete TR450 & TR250 bike is due to the cost of the components used to build the bikes. So you should be able to build a 180mm travel 2014 TR450 for a price similar to a 2013 TR250.
  • 1 0
 Yeah, but it was cool.
  • 2 0
 Ran into Kevin Menard (Transition co-owner) riding the new 2014 "TR450" today at Whistler Bike Park. He told me the new bike will actually be called the TR500, so both the TR250 and TR450 are being discontinued.
  • 9 1
 Sexy bike. I want one Drool
  • 6 0
 love this frame. and doerfling is the best ambassador for the company... always ripping so hard.
  • 6 0
 Ambadassadoerfling for sure.
  • 5 0
 Awesome to see a local company doing well!
  • 6 1
 I bought a 2011 Canadian made one. Great bike!
  • 5 1
 One of the best looking bikes out there, if I had a choice of any bike in the world, it would be this one.
  • 5 0
 That all black one is so sexy! OMG!
  • 2 0
 Hey, can someone explain me what is the difference between FSR and the 4×4?
It looks to me like an FSR layout but with a more controlled shock compression rate.

Can somebody tell me if I'm missing something?
  • 4 1
 quoted from pinkbike upon their close-up look of the endorphin: "The main four-bar suspension ensures that the Endorphin remains active under braking and pedaling, while the secondary linkage that drives the damper controls the shock rate."

you can also check out knollybikes.com/company and click on the engineering tab for their design detail of the four by 4 linkage
  • 3 4
 From an axle path standpoint, they are the same. The extra links in the Knolly system only affect the shock leverage ratio (as well as adding weight and more bearings to be replaced).
  • 4 2
 And you forgot to mention that this extra linkage creates all the magic this bike is capable of ! I have it in day glo yellow and I can tell you it's the best bike I've riden !
  • 4 3
 I'm asking because in the video Neol says the suspension layout is unique and is patented. But it looks like they have to pay specialized for using FSR. I'm not saying 4x4 is bad - having the option to control the shock rate is very beneficial And should make very good bikes. It's just not as innovative as they try to make is look... just a variation of FSR
  • 3 0
 For starters, the actual Horst Link dropout patent expired a few months ago. Nobody has to pay specialized for that anymore which is why Lapierrer, Ghost and others from europe are moving to sell in the USA for 2014.

Secondly, the wording of that actual patent was that the dropout pivot was to be ahead of, and significantly below the hub axle, between the dropout and the lower link (which most called the chainstay because that's what it looked like compared to hardtails). Rocky Mountain's ETS and Smoothlink patents are for a dropout pivot that is above and ahead of the rear axle but again to the lower link arm.

Third, if you look at where Knolly has their dropout pivot, its basically in line with the axle, same as with Ellsworth's ICT bikes, but where they difer from the ICT is the path the upper linkage takes, and thus where the virtual pivot point (which is the same as the ICT point in Ellsworth's patent, he just had to "invent" a new hocus pocus term for it to get a patent) ends up that the wheel is moving about, and the path it takes in relation to the drivetrain. ICT's have those ridiculously long links that run virtually parallel to one another so that the ICT becomes this zone in space METERS away in front of the bike. Cube basically copies that design for their bikes (which is why we won't see Cube stateside until the ICT patents expire).
  • 3 1
 4x4 benefits (not sure how many of these are shared with FSR):
- Use a full-length seat tube.
- Place the seat tube in front of the bottom bracket to move the seat forward when dropped. No rider interference.
- Increase lateral rigidity in the rear end by keeping the suspension linkage components as short as possible.
- Orient the rear shock in a position that allows for long shock stroke lengths.
- Isolate the rear shock from side loading. No flex. Period.
- Progressive shock stroke

and of course, you get the rear axle path as described by deeight.

Poached from: blistergearreview.com/gear-reviews/2013-knolly-chilcotin
  • 2 1
 I love my 2011 delirium, good bike, lots of fun to ride. I wish I could justify spending money on this new podium but there aren't many DH trails/tracks in Japan so better go for the endorphin or perhaps the soon to come Warden
  • 1 0
 There is two new DH Tracks in Hokkaido! Grand Hirafu (Niseko) and Rusutsu!

Come and ride if you are ever up here, always trying to get more riders on the tracks and yes that bike looks sick!
  • 1 0
 andymeadows: thanks for sharing, I'll have to plan a trip to Hokkaido. Is there a dedicated website for this locations?
  • 1 0
 Hi, yes, I am running a bike shop in Niseko and we manage a DH track www.nisekocycles.com and www.facebook.com/rhythmjapan

The track will be closing on the 15th October, but will open up again all next summer and be bigger and better!
  • 3 0
 I really look forward to getting my Knolly Podium!! Seems like such an awesome bike Big Grin
  • 4 0
 It's an awsome bike! best bike I've ever had.
  • 1 0
 I loved my podium I'm in love with my chilcotin greate bike compeny That's reflects its Canadians DNA on every model just pure fun to ride!! Happy to see the brand grow and expend
  • 3 0
 Love my chilcotin, podium is next! Knolly's 4x4 rewards aggressive riders
  • 2 0
 Love my podium, chilcotin is next! Knolly's 4x4 rewards aggressive riders
  • 5 4
 My podium is for sale for CHEAP! Hit me up of you are interested. It is an amazing bike the 10 times I rode mine. Wish I didn't move to Nebraska!
  • 9 1
 Omg, Nebraska!!! You poor POOR person!!!
  • 1 0
 I know right... Why couldn't Utah have a dental school last year!!!
  • 2 0
 You can really see the guy loves what he does. I really wish the company all the best! Sweet bike by the way! Big Grin
  • 1 1
 Arguably the Podium is the bike of choice for the team riders. We always love seeing photos of Garett Buehler because he's always having fun. Well, I guess guys like Bearclaw isn't always having fun on his Demo 8....
  • 3 0
 what they need now is a rider to take that bike on the top of a podium Wink
  • 2 0
 sold. i want a knolly podium. ( tho i will still call it the assassin which was what i had in my head for the name it comp!)
  • 5 4
 I loved my podium so much! This newer encartation seems to top it some how!
  • 1 7
flag seraph (Sep 11, 2013 at 23:53) (Below Threshold)
 *incarnation
  • 2 1
 Love Knolly, but I think it's funny that fork bumpers are still talked about as some litmus test on a bike.
  • 2 0
 What are these like to ride? Are they jumpy or more of a plough bike?
  • 3 0
 Super jumpy and rails corners!
  • 1 0
 Sweet! in the process of looking to upgrade, want something relatively unique. Can't decided whether I want jumpy or smashy through rough stuffy
  • 5 0
 They are jumpy and nimble, they are smooth and stable, they are anything you want them to be! I'm sure any if those fools whining about the linkage haven't tried any of these frames yet!
  • 2 0
 Always wanted one of these !
  • 5 6
 Blimey. For once some idiot hasn't said "looks like a session"!!!!! I am in by no way saying it does, but I'm sure there are some kooks out there who would say just that. Damn sweet bike that knolly is!
  • 10 3
 looks like a session
  • 3 1
 Weird. I am sure this "trek session" joke was over since months !
  • 2 0
 Sickest DH bike out. Fact.
  • 1 0
 Somehow that Knolly looks like a killer ride. It can eat any terrain for sure. I would love to try one.
  • 1 0
 new bike and new frame sistem!!
  • 1 0
 cheer me!!!!!!!! i ve already got one
  • 2 0
 good Stuff !
  • 1 0
 Will the 2014 come with a 40RAD?
  • 1 0
 I think the 40RAD (Racing Application Development) is for UCI riders only as they help on improvement in developing of Fox Shox.
  • 1 0
 My apologies. I meant 40float. Any news on the 2014 models?
  • 1 0
 love those flat slides coming into the corners
  • 1 0
 What program does they use for designing their frames?
  • 7 7
 Nice, i need a new sex wagon
  • 1 0
 It's...it's...beautiful!
  • 1 0
 Sweet bike
  • 1 0
 Why is it so sick?
  • 1 0
 lol
  • 1 0
 knolly for life....
  • 5 6
 Definitely needs a few more linkages
  • 3 5
 I like how look at this frame.
  • 1 3
 Did you make it through second grade yet?
  • 5 1
 Easy there cupcake. The english language may not be Pupi's first or second language. Du bringst mich?
  • 2 1
 I make you smile?
  • 5 7
 i think its needs more linkage
  • 1 1
 Seriously consider a degree in mechanical engineering, a crash course in debt leveraging pertaining to small business and another in patent infringement issues and risks centering around the recently expired FSR patent keeping in mind how long Knolly has been around. Then, it will all become clear.
  • 1 3
 That was LITERALLY a good video
  • 2 5
 Its nice but others trip my trigger quite a bit more.
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