Behind the Numbers: Santa Cruz Megatower Suspension Analysis

Jan 9, 2020
by Dan Roberts  
Behind the Numbers Santa Cruz Megatower Introduction

Behind the Numbers made possible by Creaform Portable 3D Measurement Technologies


After a bit of a hiatus, we're back.

If you'd like to know more about the Behind the Numbers series, aren't familiar with the terms being used, or want to know why we're doing it then check out our Introduction article for all the information.

Next up in the series is the Santa Cruz Megatower, and our final bike of the enduro category.

But first, let's explain that hiatus.

Among the plethora of suspension designs out there we can somewhat simplify them into two categories: long link designs and short link designs. Long link designs, such as the Specialized Stumpjumper Evo that we’ve previously looked at, have relatively big distances between the pivot points - take the main pivot to Horst pivot as an example.

Bikes like the Santa Cruz Megatower have much shorter distances between the pivots, meaning their links often rotate through larger angles in a shorter space of time. Given that it’s these links that are defining the instant center position a small change in the pivot points can result in a big difference in the suspension curves, far more so than longer link designs.

It’s then up to the designer to balance the pivot point placement along with all the other inputs and requirements and arrive at their desired characteristics. There’s no more or less priority for short or long linked designs, just that a poorly timed sneeze when placing a pivot would have a drastic effect on the bike's character.

Up until the Megatower we had been analyzing relatively long linked bikes, and so our degree of accuracy when taking the measurements was more than enough for those layouts. But for short linked bikes we needed to find a more accurate way to capture the data to ensure this same level of accuracy with these more sensitive layouts.

3D scanning is a method of data collection of real-world parts and objects. The data can then be used to construct digital 3D models for product development, quality control and analyzing bike suspension.

Creaform is a Canadian company that develops and makes portable 3D measuring instruments, and it is with Creaform that we have partnered to capture the data for the Behind the Numbers series.

Creaform scanning experts gathering the scan data using their HandySCAN 3D handheld scanner
The processed 3D mesh file of a Santa Cruz Megatower imported into a CAD package for post processing
Creaform's HandySCAN 3D in action producing the live mesh of the Megatower. And right, the entire scan of the bike once completed.

Using their HandySCAN 3D handheld scanner they generated a 3D mesh file of the Megatower that is accurate to 0.025mm. That’s an accuracy as small as a human hair, and a good magnitude finer than the manufacturing tolerances achievable in the bike industry. This 3D mesh file is then imported into CAD software to generate the CAD model.

The scan itself is comprised of millions of small triangular surfaces that build up to create the bigger surfaces of the bike. The scan of the bike is pretty data heavy, and for post-processing a decimated version is used to speed up the proceedings, decimation being the process of reducing the number of triangles while still keeping track of the actual geometry of what you’re scanning. From this decimated model the necessary surfaces and points are grabbed, like the pivot points, axles and tubes of the fork and seat post. And from these extracted points we can get the geometry and kinematic of the bike.

A zoomed in look at the CAD model of a 3D scan of a Santa Cruz Megatower showing the surfaces built up from millions of smaller triangles
A zoomed-in look revealing the mass of small triangles that make up the surface.
A 3D scan CAD model of a Santa Cruz Megatower imported into Creo parametric software enabling the kinematic of the bike to be drawn accurately over the top
This is then used to generate reference points and finally the 2D kinematic of the bike which we use to analyze the suspension (red lines in the right picture).


It sounds like a lot of effort to get just a 2D sketch of a bike, but it’s remarkably fast and the accuracy is so damn good that we monitor the tolerances of individual parts of the bike. Even the fork and tires have tolerances that mean in the real world they sometimes don’t follow their designed dimensions. The scan itself took a time of about 15 minutes and the whole process went from set up to final 3D model in under an hour.

So, what does this mean for you? Confidence in the series and the information that you can take away. The same can still be said of our previous bikes, but now we’ve just taken a step forward to ensure accuracy and confidence for all bikes and layouts.

A huge thank you to Creaform 3D scanning experts and mountain bike enthusiasts Simon Côté and Louis-Philippe Turgeon, for their willingness to collaborate and their invaluable help and efforts. Also, a thank you to Santa Cruz for being open and up for discussion and for being one of the catalysts in us hunting for higher accuracy. A long distance thank you to Québec local bike shop Mathieu Performance who lent us a bike for the scan. Last but not least, thank you to Bastien and Thibaut at The Factory Bike Shop in Fribourg, Switzerland, for letting me loose on one of their test bikes with a measuring tape.

Let’s get on with the analysis.





Santa Cruz Megatower Instant Centre Cat
The instant center of the suspension lies at the intersection of the upper and lower links, depicted by the engineering standard for showing an instant center - a cat.


Almost all of the Santa Cruz bikes have now moved over to a lower link driven shock layout. Maybe they now focus more on having a progressive and smoother changing leverage ratio? Maybe they like water bottles? Either way, it's a good move.

The construction needed to achieve this layout is decidedly more complex than some of the more traditional double diamond layouts of the other bikes in the enduro category. Complexity in most cases leads to some extra weight. The complexity needs repeatable quality in manufacturing, and if the form of the frame naturally twists, turns and splits then more material is added to ensure that the expanse of edges and corners won’t provide a strength problem. That being said, at least all of the complexity of the bike is low and centered, and the quality of the Santa Cruz frames and attention to detail is impressive.
Santa Cruz Megatower Analysis Details

Travel Rear: 159.5mm to 163.6mm
Travel Front: 160mm
Wheel Size: 29
Frame Size: L
COM Height: 1150mm
Chainring Size: 30T
Cassette Cog Sizes: 50T, 24T and 10T


Added to all this are the adjustability options. A small chip on the lower link and rear axle allow four different bike setup possibilities. Adjustability is good, as long as it's in a useable range, allowing the rider to nip and tuck the bike to their riding needs and terrain demands. The downside of this adjustability is the added curves on the graphs, but stick with it and you'll start to see the characteristic changes that each adjustment option brings. While the changes to geometry that the shock chip adjustment gain might be small (a measured 0.26˚ on the head angle and 3.58mm in BB height) the differences in suspension characteristics are far more pronounced. The 10mm chainstay adjustment has a bigger effect on the geometry, balance, and weight distribution, while also having a noticeable change on the suspension.




Santa Cruz Megatower Leverage Ratio

Leverage Ratio

Long CST / Low Chip – 31.5% progression with an average ratio of 2.85.
Long CST / High Chip – 27.54% progression with an average ratio of 2.82.
Short CST / Low Chip – 30.57% progression with an average ratio of 2.81.
Short CST / High Chip – 26.78% progression with an average ratio of 2.78.

The Megatower has a good chunk of progression in every setting, with around 31% in the low chip position and around 27% in the high setting. The chip adjustment has more of an effect than the chainstay adjustment.

While not at a truly extreme amount of progression it is a little on the higher side of the fence when compared to a lot of other bikes in this category.

What is high are the average leverage ratios. Lots of bikes at the moment, with metric stroke shocks and 160mm travel, are hovering around a 2.76 average ratio. They’re doing this by using 60mm stroke shocks. The Megatower has a 57.5mm stroke shock as standard, and so the ratios take a jump up. Higher ratios are going to transmit more force into the shock, and so need higher spring rates or air pressure to support them. Higher ratios will also be moving the shock shaft at slower speeds, generating less damping force that would need to be accounted for in the shock tune.

Bikes with more progression and high ratios tend to ride dynamically deeper in the travel, which is why Mike Kazimer in his review probably preferred the high chip setting to not only raise the BB a smidge, but reduce the amount of overall progression and have the bike dynamically higher in its travel when riding.

The further towards the extremes we go the more the setup compromises rear their head. We witnessed this with the very linear Orange Stage 6 and Specialized Stumpjumper EVO.

For the Megatower the extremeness is not as severe, but there will be a swing to either two scenarios. Setting up with a normal amount of sag would then mean spring rates that would perhaps deprive the bike from using the available travel, whereas setting it up to use the available travel would result in increased sag. This lower sag in combination with the progression could lead to riding with more time spent in a harder sprung and lower leveraged portion of the suspension, potentially coming across as harshness.

In these situations, it could be beneficial to side with less sag; this would cause the bike to ride higher in the travel and in a zone of lighter spring rate and higher leverage.

The leverage ratio curves are quite constant in their change. Only right at the end of travel in the low chip position do we have a bit of a shoulder of increased progression. Depending on shock setup this extra shoulder, coupled with an air spring's natural ramp, could provide a small wall of overall progression at the end to hit.

Suggestions of tricky shock setup from Mike perhaps come from these higher leverage ratios in all settings. The high leverage ratios with high progression define the character of the squish and there are going to be less perceivable ride feel changes when fiddling with the adjusters on the shock, due to this high amount of force going into the shock and its slow movement.





Santa Cruz Megatower Anti Squat
The full range of the Megatower anti-squat.


Santa Cruz Megatower Anti Squat Zoomed
A zoomed-in look at the anti-squat to show more detail for the lighter gears.


Anti-Squat

First off, apologies for the overload of curves, but 4 bike setups and 3 different gear sizes result in a busy graph.

The first anti-squat graph shows the entirety of the range of figures, which is big. The second graph zooms in to +160% / -100% anti-squat to give a bit more detail for the gears more relevant to climbing.

For the easiest gear (30T chainring and 50T cassette) there’s nearly always above 100% anti-squat, so in that gear the bike should do an OK job of combatting the weight transfer. As the gears get harder the amount of anti-squat increases, but so does the exponential shape of the curve, so much so that in the hardest gear the asymptote drops the anti-squat down to just shy of -360%. Luckily, this trend is towards the higher gears and so perhaps further away from the climbing gears. The increased anti-squat at the beginning of travel in these gears could go some way to stabilizing out of the saddle sprinting.

This trend in rapidly decreasing anti-squat is also going to lead to a drop off in the pedal kickback towards the end of travel. The most extreme drop offs come in the low chip position, so running the bike in high could also smooth out the anti-squat while still keeping that flavor of high weight transfer support to end of travel drop in pedal kickback. It does, of course, depend on the riding scenario, component choice and impact speed as to whether the theoretical pedal kickback will actually be felt.

Coupled with the leverage ratio, which would lead to a somewhat active supple feel, this healthy dose of anti-squat is a positive, and as it seems from Mike’s review the bike does indeed pedal well and have the feel of moving forward with pedal power rather than bogging down into the suspension with lackluster anti-squat there to support you.





Santa Cruz Megatower Anti Rise

Anti-Rise

The familiar VPP style curve resides in the anti-rise graph, too, although at least this time there aren’t 12 curves to try and absorb. The overall range of the anti-rise, however, is much less, going between around 85% and -25%.

The higher figures at the beginning of travel will equate to a degree of squatting to combat weight transfer from braking. As the bike goes further into the travel this effect will diminish, and in the last 20mm the bike will actually extend a touch and slightly accentuate this weight transfer, rather than combat it.

To do this combatting, or accentuating, the suspension system needs to give up something else, and in the case of anti-rise, and the Megatower, it’s perhaps some sensitivity in the suspension at the beginning of travel. Some designers would prefer the opposite and have low transitioning to high figures, giving perhaps more traction in the first portion of travel and increased weight transfer support deeper in the travel, when the riding scenario might be of a higher energy level.

Again, it’s not fully clear if this was intentionally designed in or if it’s a resultant of optimizing other characteristics. But there’s maybe a sneaking suspicion that Santa Cruz focussed on some other suspension factors, like leverage ratio and overall frame layout and packaging, and other characteristics had to follow.





Santa Cruz Megatower Axle Path

Axle Path

Yes, the scale on the graph is different, but don’t worry, we’ll do a comparison with all the bikes on the same graph so you have a good overview of the whole enduro segment of bikes. Zooming in does allow us to see the details and nuances of the individual bikes.

What we see is that the Megatower does have around 2mm of rearwards axle path. But in reality, this will only be of use when landing from absolute zero travel. As from the sag point onwards (25% shock stroke equates to about 45mm of rear-wheel travel) there is only a forward trajectory on the rear axle.

While this is commonly thought of as bad, it depends on if you’re looking at the compression stroke or rebound stroke. A high pivot bike will, of course, move its axle out of the way with more ease as the axle path is more in line with vector created by the bump. But on the rebound stroke the axle will be travelling straight into, imagine head on, into the next bump. It then has to decelerate, pass zero velocity and accelerate away again.

So, a benefit in one direction can be a deficit in the opposite. A more forwards axle path will require more energy to move out of the way, but will not be firing itself directly back at the next impact.

Like all the factors involved in a bike, there’s a point of balance in there somewhere. It’s a hard job balancing 100 spinning plates on your own, and Santa Cruz has done a good job of taking their older generation layout and improving a lot of characteristics, not just in the suspension department.

One thing we can see is that the high chip position looks to be the more favorable position with slightly more rearward travel up to the sag point and then around 3mm less forwards travel.





Final Thoughts

bigquotesThe Megatower takes on many of the suspension traits from the Nomad and Bronson, most of these being positive traits that will assist the bike in living up to its intended purpose as a 160mm 29er. The adjustability is a nice touch and is going to provide owners with options to change the character of the bike, although the high position could be the choice setting.

There are some interesting quirks in the suspension characteristics that are simply there as a result of choosing this short counter-rotating layout, but it seems from looking at the characteristics, and our ride impressions, that if you're into grabbing it by the horns it will go bloody fast.






Previous Behind the Numbers Articles:
GT Force Suspension Analysis
Orange Stage Six Suspension Analysis
Marin Mount Vision Suspension Analysis
Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Suspension Analysis
Introducing Behind the Numbers - A New Suspension Analysis Series


198 Comments

  • 327 3
 came for lazer cats
  • 24 1
 Great marketing, you should definitely incorporate
  • 18 0
 @SCOTT-Sports I’m game if you are.
  • 90 13
 Scott... your father would rather see you using sharks with fricking lazer beams attached to their heads!
  • 17 2
 don't f#%k with cats
  • 3 13
flag DaFreerider44 (Jan 8, 2020 at 8:43) (Below Threshold)
 Hey Scott wanna give me a gambler real quick?
  • 11 0
 ...stayed for instant center cats.
  • 3 0
 @scott-sports need Laser Cats Tuned
  • 6 0
 I found Lazer cats disturbing
  • 11 1
 IMO, what @SCOTT-Sports is really trying to say is Lazer Cat™ is definitely not Schrodinger's cat, since Lazer Cat™ can burn his way out of the cardboard box with said "lazers" and escape possible death from radiation. Lazer Cat™ is not to be trifled with.
  • 5 0
 Instant-center cat made me LOL
  • 5 0
 I was expecting cat scans!
  • 2 0
 @WAKIdesigns: "la-zer"
  • 2 0
 @ReformedRoadie: yeah, they are just as dangerous as the people that like them.
  • 1 0
 @nordicMT: it’s the title of a limited series on Netflix...
  • 194 5
 This is like wine tasting notes for bikes. Wine Expert: Darker fruit aromas and hints of cherry and earth. Flavors are layered with dark cherry, blackberry, and Asian spices. Me: Mmm...this is good wine. Tastes winey. Bike suspension expert: *this page* Me: Mmm...this is a good full suspension bike. Rides very full suspenion bike-ish
  • 2 45
flag lkubica (Jan 8, 2020 at 8:57) (Below Threshold)
 No it is not an has a very noticeable impact on riding. It's rather like beer vs vodka vs piss.
  • 41 0
 mmm yes very squish squish
  • 14 0
 this wine is redolent of grapes. it has a subtle grapey flavour with just a hint of grape.
  • 1 0
 Bikes Are Like A Good Bottle Of Wine.. The longer you keep it, the more dreamy it becomes when you finally get a taste! For 2020 I’m going to be BikeTasting all the latest bikes to see how they stack up to the Megatower I just Sold a unicorn for! #BikeSomm
  • 9 0
 Twas a very good year. It goes, stops, and bends in the middle noticeably better than its peers.
  • 2 0
 Hiccup!....BUUUUUUURRRPP!!!
  • 1 0
 @gumbytex: I'm just going to out you here and mention that wine tasting note reads like you might know what you're talking about Wink
  • 2 0
 Perth Pink. This is not a wine for drinking - this is a wine for laying down, and avoiding.
  • 43 2
 Best cover picture ever. Also I hope this series becomes a mainstay (more so than it has been). Really interesting stuff. I like numbers.
  • 45 0
 Here's some: 2 and 3754689 and 73,3. You're welcome.
  • 22 0
 @Twowheelsjunkie: Those are the # of wheels on a modern mtb, # of new standards coming out in 2020, and SRAM's new BB width standard, correct?
  • 9 0
 @Twowheelsjunkie: I think I just came.
  • 4 1
 @Twowheelsjunkie: how did u forget 69 and 420
  • 1 0
 I'd defo buy this as a t-shirt
  • 1 0
 @Twowheelsjunkie: dude... 42
  • 43 7
 25 micron accuracy with the bike leaning against a cardboard box. lol.
  • 16 0
 Means the box got scanned real damn good too.
  • 14 0
 0.025mm point density and 0.025mm accuracy are not the same thing. I'd expect this setup to have 0.5mm accuracy at its absolute best... photogrammetry is just physically limited by photo volume vs. object volume vs. camera resolution. Speaking as a metrology professional, 0.025mm accuracy is incredibly difficult to achieve with laser scanning alone on this scale, without even accounting for the error induced by the photogrammetry network. That being said, the Creaform HandySCAN is still the perfect technology for this application and it is really cool to see it used for this analysis. I'd love to see more of these articles!
  • 2 0
 @ajreed: I use and sell these. Local accuracy is 0.025mm and volumetric is 0.04mm/m. So if we say 2m overall then we'd be at 0.08mm total accuracy.
  • 18 1
 TIL: A cat is the engineering standard for showing instant center
  • 8 0
 "Center of Accelerating Travel", "Center of Actual Triangulation". I am sure we can come up with something that works
  • 11 0
 I'd like to see this done on the current generation V10, and other DH bikes. Considering there are certain "ideals" for each catagory, it would be intriguing to see the numbers from all the metrics employed by each manufacturer compared across their entire range. For example how does the V10 29 compare to say the mega tower, but also how does it compare to the Demo 29.
Or even more intriguing, V10 27.5 vs V10 29.
It seems as we get deeper and deeper into innovation and development, alot of stigmas are getting debunked.
  • 13 1
 Great article @dan-roberts ! Props for getting accurate data, too many inaccuracies are thrown around.

Check out www.datumcycles.com to see how shock and fork rates impact suspension when combined with kinematics.

Cheers!
  • 2 0
 Thanks very much! I'll go take a look.
  • 14 0
 Cats, maybe cats operating in gangs.
  • 1 0
 Lady cats surelySmile
  • 13 1
 So it's a scoocum choocher?
  • 4 0
 It's the Cockford Ollie.
  • 6 1
 Thankfully SC doesn't use much Chinesium in their bikes.
  • 5 1
 "skookum" is the correct word.
  • 3 0
 Can I buy it from the usual scumbags?
  • 6 0
 " A high pivot bike will, of course, move its axle out of the way with more ease as the axle path is more in line with vector created by the bump. But on the rebound stroke the axle will be travelling straight into, imagine head on, into the next bump. It then has to decelerate, pass zero velocity and accelerate away again.

So, a benefit in one direction can be a deficit in the opposite. A more forwards axle path will require more energy to move out of the way, but will not be firing itself directly back at the next impact."

That is a great way to think about it! I've never heard it articulated quite that way, but it's really slick.
  • 5 0
 Do the Ripmo carbon vs the Ripmo AF. The linkage design blog did the Ripmo carbon and it was interesting seeing the progressive-linear-regressive leverage curve. 1.3k miles on the carbon vs 300 miles on the AF now and I do feel the difference (less tokens) but i'd like to see if they made the AF progressive-linear-progressive or just straight up progressive. Thinking part of the curve is still linear due to my experience with the coil on the AF feeling planted but un-lively.
  • 1 0
 int he contrary, a Linear suspension will have more lively feel mid stroke with a coil shock but a progressive suspension would feel plusher and less lively up until the last few millimeters of travel.
  • 4 0
 I don't know how reliable these curves are, but Ripmo & AF are on here:
linkagedesign.blogspot.com/2019/12/pivot-firebird-29-2020.html
  • 1 0
 @rojo-1: Thank you for the link! I'd been curious about that comparison as well.
  • 1 0
 @rojo-1: thank you! It’s as I thought, just switched to progressive in the last 1/3 of the travel instead of regressive. Still relatively linear compared to other bikes. On paper and on trail don’t think coil is the way. I am planning on trying the Cane Creek progressive Vault spring though.
  • 5 0
 How do these stats equate to using Air vs. Coil shocks on the Megatower? I know personal preference is a huge factor just did not know it the data recommended certain chainstay and chip positions by type of shock used?
  • 3 0
 When you model the wire-frames into the software used to generate the numbers, is there an animation of the suspension going through it's travel? It would be interesting to have a "huck to flat" for the different suspensions to see how the components move together. We got a little of it in the field test, but sometimes it's hard to see the linkages moving with legs and frames in the way.
  • 3 0
 I think there should be animated lazers from the cat not just a picture I need a moving picture like Huck to flat videos. And the cats eyes should be twice as big . Then I will have a much better understanding of the kinematics. Still this is a significant improvement over charts and graphs.
  • 3 0
 Can you elaborate on the anti-rise? Anti-rise is currently one of probably the most controversial suspension design aspects. My understanding was that above 100% ant-squat the suspension would compress and below 100% the suspension would extend. Is this inflection point actually at 0% as stated in the article??
  • 2 0
 > 100% = the suspension compresses due to rear brake forces being attenuated too much
100% = the suspension does not extend or compress due to rear brake forces being perfectly attenuated
1-99% = the suspension extends slightly due to rear braking forces being partially attenuated
0% = the suspension extends due to rear brake forces that aren't attenuated at all
0% = the suspension extends a lot due to rear braking forces being amplified

some people like > 100% since it can help balance out fork dive
others prefer 100% since it may make the rear feel more active under braking
0% is basically always bad

A rising anti-squat curve can be good for the reasons stated in the article.
A falling anti-squat curve may also be good in my opinion, since you get better traction in rough terrain when the bike is taking repeated hits and sagging deeper into its travel. But you also prevent the bike from pitching forward quite as much on extremely steep rock rolls when the more weight is over the front and the rear end has a tendency to rise up.
  • 1 0
 It looks like my less than signs got removed for some reason, but I meant to say:

less than 0% = brake forces amplified

less than 100% may make the rear more active under braking (I've heard some mixed opinions on this one)
less than 0% is basically always bad
  • 1 0
 @dlxah: GREAT overview, and that is exactly my understanding of anti-rise as well. The reason I brought it up is because the article states: "The higher figures at the beginning of travel will equate to a degree of squatting to combat weight transfer from braking. As the bike goes further into the travel this effect will diminish, and in the last 20mm the bike will actually extend a touch and slightly accentuate this weight transfer, rather than combat it."

This is counter to my understanding of it and what you nicely outlined.
  • 3 0
 Apologies, you’ve got a couple things right, but some other things aren’t quite spot on.
The percentage value is to do with how much of the load transfer from braking is being counteracted.
0% means none of the load transfer is counteracted and the suspension extends. Like you’ve mentioned.
100% actually means that all the load transfer is counteracted, and to do this the suspension needs to compress to counter the bikes want to pitch forward and extend the suspension.
As you get closer to 0% the bike counteracts less and less of the load transfer. But it’s still compressing, just less and less as you approach 0%. Kind of how you say, but there will be compression of the suspension.
More than 100% and you’ll be putting more than enough countering in to combat the load transfer, and further compress the suspension more than you need.
Below 0% the bike will extend, and accentuate the bikes natural want to pitch forwards and extend the suspension.
Hopefully that helps.
  • 1 0
 @dan-roberts: Hey man, thanks for the reply. Love the series btw. I'm not sure that what is written makes sense though. If at 100% Anti-Rise, you are compressing the suspension with the braking force to equally counteract the weight shift due to braking, therefore the suspension neither compresses or extends. If you're below 100% though, say 50% AR, the braking force only counteracts half of the weight shift force, therefore the suspension still extends. I think I understand what you're trying to say now. You're saying that the higher figures (85%-45%) at the beginning of travel will still have some compression force on them (but the suspension will still extend overall), and in the last 20mm of travel, where the AR goes below 0%, the braking force will actually work to extend the suspension (in addition to the weight shift).

Anti-Rise IMO opinion is a very interesting characteristic because suspension designers largely haven't agreed upon a "good amount" or a "sweet spot" like they have with most other characteristics.
  • 1 0
 @dan-roberts: I've seen some mixed information about that. For example, this article alone as two conflicting answers: bikerumor.com/2018/10/04/suspension-tech-what-is-anti-rise

“PARRY: More than 100% anti-rise implies that, under rear braking only, the suspension will compress. Conversely, less than 100% anti-rise implies that, under rear braking only, the suspension will extend.”

“CLOWARD: The higher the anti-rise number the more the rear suspension will compress. 50% anti-rise is pretty low and braking will have a smaller effect on the suspension and the suspension will remain active. At 100% the suspension will compress under braking. At 150% the suspension will compress even more and can cause a lockout feel while braking over bumps.”

This article seems to agree with me: enduro-mtb.com/en/mtb-suspension-kinematics

I suppose it might have to do with the method used to calculate it. But in reality, 100% doesn't really mean much anyway, since different riders will have different centers of gravity on the bike, and it's constantly shifting around.
  • 2 0
 @tgent: I agree. Anti-rise is really interesting in that there are so many differing opinions about it. It seems like it's probably the least important aspect of suspension design, though. There are bikes that get great reviews with anti-rise numbers that are all over the place (e.g. Transition Sentinel at ~35% and Forbidden Druid at ~120%). I think as long as it's within a reasonable range of maybe ~30% to ~130%, then it doesn't really matter much. It's not something you ever hear people commenting on in bike reviews.
  • 1 0
 @tgent: One must remember 2 things;

1. The front suspension will be compressing during braking so some bikes and some riders (Fabian Barel when he was with Kona and set up his floating brake different from stock to compress the rear) prefer the rear to compress so that the bike would squat on both ends to keep the chassis more level with the ground.

2. Deep in the travel the action is from a large hit and is therefore transient and only lasts a short time. The Santa Cruz design becomes much less compressive at high amounts of travel which should allow the bump to pass through easier but as it is a short duration event it shouldn't upset the bike much. This is what I feel when I ride my Megatower.
  • 1 0
 @Ridge-Rider: I agree on 1, but that is why designers and riders can't decide on if high Anti-Squat or low anti-squat is good or bad. On 2, yes as you go deeper into the travel the anti-rise drops which means if you're braking during a big short hit, the braking force counteracting the compression will be reduced and eventually zero. However the downside of this is the megatower has relatively low anti-squat values, all below 100% so the suspension is always going to extend due to the rider's weight shift forward when braking.
  • 3 0
 1 hour for the whole scan job is seriously impressive! I assume they weren't using the basic version of vx elements, you have to spring a bit extra on top of the hundred grand for the scanner itself to get useful functionality Nice scanner creaform, fucking awful software
  • 6 0
 A Giant box none-the-less
  • 2 0
 *no less
  • 2 0
 Good one with this Megatower, personally I think is the best job you have done considering antisquat and leverage ratio graphs. In addition the posibility to change chainstay length and flip chip positions is good to modify end stroke behavior fitting both shock choises (air and coil)!
  • 2 0
 "Depending on shock setup this extra shoulder, coupled with an air spring's natural ramp, could provide a small wall of overall progression at the end to hit."

I think modern mega-negative air shocks are approaching linear rates through most of their travel that the tiny little shoulder in the graph isn't really going to be a big deal. And it's hugely beneficial for a coil, isn't it?
  • 2 0
 @dan-roberts: Hi Dan, I'd like to humbly try oppose your reasoning of different axle paths. We must openly note that more rearward or vertical axlepaths used to be common in times of 26" wheels. While with bigger wheels, this stopped happening and forward axlepaths are almost standard. Even the @Banshee-Team frames, for which the vertical axle path has been natural for the past two generations, have "less" vertical axlepath in their 3rd generation. But still very vertical when compared to rest of the market.
ep1.pinkbike.org/p3pb17749863/p3pb17749863.jpg
.
SC V10 2017, on 27.5" wheels according this review is pretty vertical up to 83% of rear travel. Rune V2 is vertical up to 87% and Rune V3 up to 75% of their rear travel. Banshee is pretty unique against the majority of the market.
.
In forward path, 1) the rear wheel must accelerate in relation to the mainframe and 2) clear the obstacle with more energy required. After first impact, during the rebound phase, it is still somewhere in its forward path, it is deccelerating (moving back) and when hitting next obstacle, it must overcome the energy already accumulated in the rear shock.
In rearward or vertical path, the wheel slightly deccelerates. After first impact, during the rebound phase it must accelerate slightly (requires lighter rebound damping?) and while hitting the next obstacle, it must too overcome the energy stored in rear shock. But if both axlepaths were working against the same leverage ratio curve, the forward path would have the tougher job. IMO.
.
I think the reasoning behind forward axlepaths of modern frames is more complex. It definitely has something to do with desired anti-squat and pedalkickback, because with 1xMega drivetrains, we route the chain in directions that induce higher pedalkickback. And that is direct input to the rider.
  • 2 0
 29er have a more forward axle path simply because the hub sits higher compared to the BB than with smaller wheels. So a vertical axle path would result in more kickback. The only way to overcome this is with a pulley that detours the chain. It is no coincidence that such designs became more popular with 29er dh bikes.
  • 1 0
 @cru-jones: Hm ? :-/ Larger wheel needs to rotate less than smaller wheel to revolve by the same distance. It IS a coincidence that idler-pulley equipped highpivot bikes reappeared with larger wheels. Larger wheel can roll over obstacle with greater ease, that's been the mantra of 29er fanboys. So why would Commencal needed to add rearward axlepath to even further aid the rear wheel roll oover obstacles? This design was supposed to be more widespread on 26" wheelers.
  • 1 0
 @fluider: Because with a 29er, the rear wheel axle sits higher in comparison to the BB than with smaller wheels, so if you aim for the same pedal kickback, the axle path is more forward oriented. So as long as you do not go for a high pivot with pulley design, indeed a 29er wheels has less benefits in the rear than in the front. One more reason for mullet bikes.
  • 5 0
 The thumbnail picture needs to be submitted for PB photo of the year.
  • 5 3
 Considering that Pon Bike ( the owners of SC and many other brands ) delivered over 700.000 bikes in 2018 / 19, 50% of which were electric, then surely it's only a matter of time before SC jump on the electric gravy train.
  • 6 0
 Electrotower
  • 12 3
 No doubt most of these electric bikes were commuter bikes (like Gazelle). Pon also does cars running on petrol. Santa Cruz currently doesn't make commuter bikes nor cars so I don't expect them to suddenly start making bikes running on petrol or electricity.

Yamaha also makes guitars. Doesn't mean you can play guitar on their MX bike.
  • 6 0
 @gumbytex: Power Tower
  • 10 0
 @gumbytex: MegaWatt
  • 5 0
 @ReformedRoadie: Digital Nomad
  • 2 0
 noooooooo
  • 6 0
 February.
  • 7 0
 They will probably just phone it in and call it the "Cell Tower"
  • 1 1
 @gumbytex: @ReformedRoadie BRONSON. BEWARE THE RIDES OF MARCH!
  • 6 0
 Chame-Li-ion
  • 5 0
 Pinkbike armchair engineers: *heavy breathing*
  • 9 0
 Pinkbike cat lovers: *heavy breathing*
  • 4 0
 I'm no cat person but if I could find one with laser eyes ....he'd have to like my dog.
  • 1 0
 "For the easiest gear (30T chainring and 50T cassette) there’s nearly always above 100% anti-squat, so in that gear the bike should do an OK job of combatting the weight transfer."

No, it falls below 100% almost exactly at the sag point. So on any bump/compression the anti-squat flips from gently trying to extend the suspension to gently trying to compress it, and vice versa for extension/jounce/rebound. Luckily the curve is at it's flattest in the climbing gears, so this flipping of the anti-squat is likely much less noticable compared to older VPP bikes, which are notorious for "inch-worming" up punchy climbs, and the more you pedal squares the worse it gets.
  • 1 0
 anti-squat above zero means the chain tension is working to extend the suspension. 100% is the theoretical point where the chain tension cancels out the weight transfer from acceleration to create a no movement situation. It's theoretical because there are assumptions being made about the rider. 50%as is still working to extend the suspension. Hope this helps.
  • 1 0
 @JohanG: The whole entire system is making assumptions about the rider! You're right, I didn't word it quite right. On this bike, when the anti-squat crosses below 100%, it's not compressing the suspension itself, but rather allowing it to be compressed by the rider's mass, vs. when over 100%, the chain forces are greater than the acceleration forces, allowing the chain forces to extend the suspension.

The argument still stands, that crossing through 100% anti-squat flips the effectiveness of the chain forces in supporting the suspension, exaggerating any bob present from not pedaling perfect circles.
  • 1 0
 These are really helpful and I think many would appreciate a suspension synopsis as part of every review that you do.

It is physics, not just a press release or individual reviewers opinions.

It will help folks figure out what bike is for them (are you OK with running a coil for a bike to ride the way you want, or do you want a less progressive bike with a tunable air shock)?

And Lazer Cats...
  • 1 0
 Doesn't this below apply to the front axle that goes backwards?




"What we see is that the Megatower does have around 2mm of rearwards axle path. But in reality, this will only be of use when landing from absolute zero travel. As from the sag point onwards (25% shock stroke equates to about 45mm of rear-wheel travel) there is only a forward trajectory on the rear axle.

While this is commonly thought of as bad, it depends on if you’re looking at the compression stroke or rebound stroke. A high pivot bike will, of course, move its axle out of the way with more ease as the axle path is more in line with vector created by the bump. But on the rebound stroke the axle will be travelling straight into, imagine head on, into the next bump. It then has to decelerate, pass zero velocity and accelerate away again.

So, a benefit in one direction can be a deficit in the opposite. A more forwards axle path will require more energy to move out of the way, but will not be firing itself directly back at the next impact."
  • 1 0
 I don't buy that last sentence. Yes, the wheel and its mass have to change direction, but the more significant mass here is the rider. The 2nd impact will also cause the rear wheel to change direction, and go forward against a solid obstacle, meaning pulling the rider mass back. I also agree that the second impact will be theoretically smaller because the rear wheel is also going back at the time of the impact, but is it significant when the entire bike is moving at 20mph?
  • 1 0
 I love this series! Keep the data and analysis coming.

Could this be part of every bike review?
Can we have a "Behind the Numbers" shootout and then compare that to the on-bike field test results?
Can the frames be mounted to a test rig and report on stiffness?
A searchable database?
How about data for components? Example Brakes. Measure the clamping force, friction, and heat dissipation rather than count the number of pistons and hope that equals performance

Thank you, Dan Roberts!
  • 1 0
 This may classify as an advertisement but you could do all this analysis with my Linkage software in about 10 minutes (advanced users in 5), by using a side view picture. If interested go to www.bikechecker.com.
This 3D scanner is cool though.
  • 1 1
 As air shocks are progressive by nature, I am very curious what the leverage ratio curve will look like with the shock installed. Maybe the difference between the Megatower and the SJ will be smaller, depending on how progressive Specialized tuned the shock?
  • 2 0
 "and our final bike of the enduro category" NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Did they cover the specialized enduro?
  • 4 0
 Yeah i want to know if putting a zillion bearings and links actually helps. Because we all know, with the Scott Gambler, it didn't since they went back to simply one shock actuation lever.
  • 1 1
 "In these situations, it could be beneficial to side with less sag; this would cause the bike to ride higher in the travel and in a zone of lighter spring rate and higher leverage."

What situations? For descending with some pep, I'd rather run more sag. Running more sag moves you into the firmer part of the curve giving more pop and feedback from the trail, while also increasing negative travel so you can charge over holes and drops and maintain traction. And climbing I'd still like more sag, again getting to the firmer part of travel where you can get the trail feedback and have something to push against to move around and maintain traction and front-rear balance.

The only situation I can think of where hanging out in the high leverage area is beneficial is if I had mild hemorrhoids and weak legs wanted the saddle to be super gentle against my bits while still maintaining some speed through rough stuff that I had to stay seated for. Or maybe if I had a leg injury and wanted less trail feedback through the pedals.
  • 1 0
 Depends on rider weight, compression tune, terrain, riding style etc. Overly progressive bikes simply lack grip IMO.
  • 2 2
 How do you say, "The Megatower has a good chunk of progression", and "quite constant in their change"? I think the text of this article is confusing progression with rising rate.
  • 4 0
 Agreed. A fairly linear rising rate.
  • 7 0
 A rate is a comparison of two numbers with different units. The leverage ratio is comparing mm to mm and essentially ends up with no units. Progression is describing the change from start to finish, in the case of the Megatower. Constant change is refering to them being as close to straight as possible. We could use the word linear, but that for MTB suspension systems describes a leverage ratio with little or no change from start to finish.
  • 1 0
 @dan-roberts: In applied mathmatics (economics) the rate of change is the instantaneous slope of a curve (the derivative). Any time the slope is positive, we would say it has a rising rate. If the second derivative is also positive, meaning the slope is increasing in its rate of increase (curving upwards), then we would say its a progressively rising rate. Its different in engineering?
  • 4 0
 @hamncheez: When you hear "Linearly progressive" or "smoothed out the progressiveness" you're typically hearing people refer to the third derivative, ie how constant is the rate of change of the progressively rising rate.
  • 1 0
 @dan-roberts: "as close to straight as possible".
Does it make sense?
If you are looking at "wheel/shock" curve, you can have a straight line...
... and then looking at "shock/wheel" curve for the same thing, the straight line is gone. And none of these are really helpful to predict what will happen on the field.
  • 2 0
 @hamncheez: Everything is different when we talk about bikes. Konas are "Single pivots" even if they have four of them. You can't put FSR and Virtual Pivots in the same group... that name is "reserved" for Short Link bikes. Trek and DW patented the same system twice, and the list goes on and on....
  • 1 0
 @Antoncor: haha half the engineering propaganda we read about bikes were written by marketing teams, not engineers
  • 3 1
 I prefer PolyWorks for metrology software personally... Way more user friendly than PC-DMIS or CAM.
  • 6 0
 Well that is just great thanks for sharing!!!
  • 2 0
 @WastingLifeHere: you're welcome. LOL
  • 3 0
 CN: So we analyzed it and have no real idea if its good or bad?
  • 1 0
 By the numbers, not by the feelings. Would be nice though to relate those numbers to riding characteristics.
  • 1 0
 Geekness for geekness sake
  • 3 4
 I'm really confused as to why they scanned the final bike when they already design the bike in 3D CAD in the first place... surely the CAD models would be even more accurate than the scans. Very cool tech tho and I could see it used in other areas such as animation and rendering.
  • 13 0
 I think it is because Santa Cruz wouldn't provide the CAD model since that is pretty sensitive IP.
  • 10 0
 Creaform, Pinkbike and Santa Cruz are three seperate companies. Santa Cruz, or any manufacturer for that matter, isn't keen to give out their CAD models. So we had to get the data from scanning a whole bike.
  • 3 0
 @dan-roberts: I get it now. Very cool tech! I'm a 3D animator and something like this would save me so much time from modeling parts that aren't done in CAD.
  • 2 0
 Also- from CAD through manufacturing processes and production could slightly alter the bike from intent to application- or from the computer screen to the bike shop floor. I think it would be interesting to compare these scans to the CAD but either way the reverse engineering is cool here to take it from product to rendering.
  • 1 0
 Santa Cruz is unlikely to give away their secrets for free.
  • 1 0
 Super rad cat graphics 3 3 3

But I feel the title graphic would be even more rad if the lazzzer beamzzz would pass through the wheels / spokes...
  • 2 0
 The Creaform website doesn't post any prices for the Handyscan 3d so it must be crazy expensive!
  • 1 0
 You really don't want to know, I'd get the full monty 10 bike santa cruz fleet instead
  • 1 0
 As a Mechanical Engineer & Data Geek... I already have a woodie to read this article (and the previous ones) after work. Damn job!
  • 1 0
 Since you did all that measuring, can you provide the laser-measured geometry numbers like HTA, STA, etc? I'm curious how they compare to the advertised numbers.
  • 2 0
 wow. that is a long read for the conclusion: „grab it by the horns and it will go fast“
  • 3 0
 I really like the low setting with my X2...
  • 3 0
 SC bikes now come from Giant boxes?
  • 2 3
 SC lost me when I upgraded from the Tallboy LT to the Hightower.
The Hightower felt slow from the first pedal stroke in the driveway.
Sure it went down better but the slogging pedaling feel and harshness over roots
was a real drag. If you take a close look at the suspension differences you can see that the lower pivot on the Tallboy
is almost vertical and the Hightower its almost horizontal.( like the mega tower)
i'm no suspension designer but I think that a horizontal lower link transfers the forces from a real wheel hit backwards initially and it is felt as deceleration. I would rather have the forces more vertically oriented like on a standard 4 bar.
I think VPP is over. it was useful back when pivot points added slop and noise, but today thats not so much a problem.
  • 3 2
 I'm allergic to cats. Dogs are much more athletic. Always ready to go run and exercise no matter what the conditions.
  • 2 0
 And cats like to sit the on the fridge stare and judge you when you pop another beer
  • 1 0
 @Twowheelsjunkie: I don't really drink much anymore, so not really an issue.
  • 3 1
 Only one severed cat head required per scan cycle.
  • 2 0
 Hmmmm yes is squishy, will smash good...
  • 3 0
 killer bike!!
  • 2 1
 How we need that for jamis, mostly portal with that flipchip for 29 and 275+ wheels!
  • 2 0
 still not sure what anti-squat and anti-rise actually are
  • 1 0
 A good reminder we need to work on those explainers. Soon! Smile
  • 1 0
 What about the spec of the dark silver T6 that always seems to come with a Santa Cruz bike??
  • 1 0
 That 3D scan is incredible. Please do that for every bike. And post the 3D files to download.
  • 1 0
 Frinking cats, with frinking lasers from their frinking eyes!!!!!!! Whaaaaaaaa!!!
  • 1 1
 It's a shame Santa Cruz use appalling bearings that aren't capable of lasting a full year. Good job the owner has a lifetime supply of those crappy bearings.
  • 1 1
 When I saw the title, I thought you were going break down how much profit they are making on each bike.
  • 11 11
 Can someone enlighten me? If VPP is so damn great why is no company using it since patent has been lifted?
  • 3 0
 Diamondback
  • 5 0
 Intense and diamond back are both using it.

It’s good on the descends in my opinion. But after I built up my Antidote dark matter, sadly it didn’t even climb as well as that beast.

I’ve owned a bronson v2 and a nomad v4. I’m just not a huge fan of the pedaling characteristics. That’s just me, cue SC fanboys that get hyper offended.

But I’ll see how the CJ 29 performs.
  • 2 0
 I think Intense (used to use the patented version of VPP) and Diamondback are using variations of it.
  • 3 9
flag WAKIdesigns (Jan 8, 2020 at 8:58) (Below Threshold)
 @Happypanda1337: intense has always been using it. Back in the day Intense was a spiced up, luxurious version of already blingy Santa Cruz. Diamond Back, now that’s interesting...
  • 2 1
 yup.... 4 bar is easier to implement/design and have the same kinematics if so desired.
  • 7 8
 Easy! All other bikes SUCK! Or more likely no one wants to abandon the suspension systems they are known for or been tweaking for years... switching to a whole new program would be costly and might admit all their old bikes suck? Having the ability to test ride all the super bikes and there suspension designs when I got my V3 Nomad I just like the feel of climbing and descending on SC’s VPP... DW link was second, it climbed better but felt harsh every where else. Even back in the day SC felt better than Intense... oh yeah and the stout construction and aesthetics of SC bikes is unmatched. Luckily we have many choices these days and I prefer small bump performance and traction while climbing and cushion for the pushin’ on the descents. Get out there and test as many bikes as you can and go with what you like no PB editor can tell you what is best for you! No back to work!!!
  • 6 2
 Think it's a bit oversold... it's good, like most suspension designs these days, but nothing to make other manufacturers switch designs (if it's available) unless they're too lazy to design their own.

Sold my bike in the fall and have been demo'ing many bikes since. Had a Megatower for 3 good hard long rides over varying terrain. Overall it was a great, fun bike, and did a lot of things really well. First, it's reputation of being a big stiff bike that needs to be ridden really hard to get anything out of it is exaggerated. I found it actually worked best riding it at 5 to 7-10ths vs 8 to 10-10ths and pushing it hard. Found when you really pushed it, it had some trouble keeping rear end traction during hard steep braking over chunky terrain. Tough situation for any bike, but I was surprised by this from this bike as I assumed this suspension design was one of the best of the best. I guess that's the compromise over other attributes? That's most of my local terrain and found it robbed me of speed. It was one of the fastest bikes I've ridden through more flowly, less chunky terrain though. That was my only negative as it was a fun bike... but I didn't find it any better than a lot of other bikes. I don't think the value is there. It's an expensive bike for no real reason other than the brand. Free bearings for life is a nice touch though.

The other issue I had (more an annoyance), was since the suspension design is so complex and "busy", it's difficult to live with. Setting up sag is annoying, and cleaning the bike properly can only really be done by taking apart the linkages (not a good thing on BC's west coast). The flip chip is also complicated to adjust... definitely not a trail-side adjustment.

Again, good, fun, fast bike... but nothing to write home about, especially for the price and complication. For anyone that has one, great buy, it is an awesome bike, but for me, there are equal (or better) performing bikes for less money. I demo's the "S" version and for $5400 you still only get a Fox 36 Float Performance, RockShox Super Deluxe Select, and DT Swiss 370 hubs (horrible and shouldn't be on this bike). Proper tires with EXO+ casings was a nice touch though.
  • 5 4
 @WastingLifeHere: but... do you have a flag?
  • 2 0
 @islandforlife: interesting you bring up the user friendliness, specially the cleaning aspect, of this suspension design.
Santa Cruz and now the new Specialized Enduro seem to place a lot of intricate shapes, parts and bearings very low and in the tyre's firing range.
Zero experience with either system, but raises some doubts for me in muddy conditions
  • 3 2
 Banshee, Propain, Pole... I am quite sure there are more companies.
  • 2 0
 Not sure but there are 2 people I know who have had a lot of different high end bikes and both got the Megatower right when it came out and neither currently still have it and don't really have whole lot of good things to say about it. Maybe a coil would have helped?
  • 26 3
 I HAVE A NEW NOMAD. I PEDAL UP LOGGING ROADS AND MACHINE-BUILT CLIMBING TRAILS WITH NO VARIATION IN INCLINE FOR AN HOUR OR SO, AND DROP INTO SWOOPERS AND CHONK. PLEASE DONT BESMIRCH THE V, THE OTHER V, OR THE P, FOR THEY HAVE ALL TREATED ME VERY WELL. THE THING PEDALS. SHOW ME SOME "TECH SINGLETRACK CLIMBING" IN 2020 AND I'LL SHOW YOU THE DOOR. I DON'T HAVE TIME FOR THAT. I DON'T HAVE TIME FOR USING THE REGULAR SHIFT BUTTON, BEST BELIEVE I DONT HAVE ANOTHER SECOND FOR WORRYING ABOUT SQUARE EDGED ROCKS ON AN UPHILL, THE WEATHER, THE WEATHER TOMORROW, OR WHY YOU'RE LATE. GOT TWO KIDS AT HOME BRO. NOMAD.
  • 3 1
 @WAKIdesigns: What precisely do you mean by VPP? The term covers several different bits of functionality and several different patents.

If you just mean twin counter rotating links, then even your precious Antidote uses it as well as several others.

For most of the 2000s and early part of 2010s, when most people said VPP they meant a falling, then rising springrate and a falling, then rising antisquat where the switch from falling to rising was at the sag point. Santa Cruz themselves abandoned this years ago, and the newer low-mounted shock is even more of a move away from this.
  • 4 0
 @owl-X: underrated comment
  • 2 0
 @Happypanda1337: Intense, DB, Pivot, Banshee, all use a variation of some sort. I am sure there are others that I am missing as well.

I absolutely love my Intense Spider. Came from a YT Capra. and Spec Enduro before that. The spider and my 2104 Enduro have been my 2 favorite bikes ever.
  • 2 0
 @islandforlife: thanks for the detailed post. I really enjoy reading your insightful comments on the various bikes you have ridden. Still happy with your fugitive? I am building up one right now and can't wait to ride it!
  • 1 0
 @Skooks: thanks! Glad someone is getting some use out of the time I spend on here when I should be working, haha!

Sold my Fugitive and am worried I’m not going to be able to find a bike as good!! After demo’ing many bikes since selling, I have realized I may have already been on one of the best in the biz. It’s not a popular opinion on here... and it didn’t really come to light until after I sold the bike and started demo’ing others, but the 157 rear end really makes a difference. Even when compared to a bruiser like the Megatower, the rear end of the Fugitive is un-flappable. Whether sticking that high chunky off camber line or staying composed and going where I wanted it to through really fast hard steep monster-trucky lines, the Fugitive just did it. Riding other bikes, I’m feeling rear end flex like I never have before.

Probably why I’m most likely going to end up on a 2020 Warden. Can’t go back to a bike without 157. Enjoy the Fugitive, never did find a limit to it’s capabilities... just my own skill!!
  • 2 0
 @mixmastamikal: I have it with the SD coil... works really well, especially on the terrain out here in New England. I read in most reviews that finding a good set-up on the SD air shock is tricky on the Megatower.
  • 1 0
 @Arierep: Yep, it was annoying to fiddle with the suspension, the little plastic shock mud guard wasn't big enough and the gaps between some of the moving parts are very small... so small that I was worried about small rocks getting stuck and causing damage to the carbon... nevermind the constant wear of mud/dirt/sticks/gravel in a location that won't be cleaned very often. At the very least you'd have to keep a keen eye on it and service your shock more often than I already do because of where I live. Probably fine in dry and dusty California.
  • 2 1
 @islandforlife: you can have a solid rear end and not have a 157 hub spacing.
  • 5 0
 @jaydawg69: BRUNI WOULDA GOT THE TRIPLE IF HE HAD 157MM
  • 1 0
 Someone involved with Intense seems to be doing their best give the bikes the kinematics of a good Horst-link bike...
  • 2 0
 @owl-X: difference in stiffness is negligible. Having equal spoke tension throughout the wheel is much more noticeable.
  • 1 0
 @jaydawg69: yep probably, just not as solid as a 157 rear end. I’ve been on quite a few bikes now and nothing as solid yet. We’ll see.
  • 1 0
 Stanton FS bikes use a short link system like vpp, all be it implemented with different characteristics.
  • 2 0
 Engineer-porn
  • 2 0
 Love the Lazer Cats..
  • 1 0
 boy, the paint and graphics crew really went all out I see...
  • 1 0
 I don't know what any of that means.
  • 1 0
 The mentioned V10 27.5 review: ride.io/reviews/santa-cruz-v10cc
  • 1 0
 I'd buy one for the Cat with Lasers.
  • 1 0
 Awesome to see these back again!
  • 1 0
 Nobody mentioned Cascade Components?
  • 1 0
 could you please do Behind the Numbers with the yeti sb150??
  • 1 0
 WC DH needs more cats!
  • 1 0
 quick maffs
  • 1 1
 Even the 3d scanner thinks Santa Cruz should accomodate a coil
  • 2 0
 ???
  • 2 2
 ...and still no kickback graphs.
  • 4 0
 1, For pedalkickback, they would have to put pivot points into Linkage, OR do all that calculation in Excel. 2, With this much forward axlepath it's obvious there's only small pedalkickback.
  • 1 0
 Lazer cats are diversity
  • 1 0
 Lazer cats SHRED!!!
  • 1 0
 Look, an Enduro.
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