Bike Check: Mick Hannah's New NS Fuzz Downhill Bike

May 18, 2021
by Henry Quinney  


What was formerly Polygon UR announced a new frame sponsor at the start of the year, becoming NS Bikes UR for 2021. Australian Mick Hannah has raced 110 World Cups over a 20 year period, the majority of which were for UR Team. Here is his new NS Fuzz downhill bike.
Mick Hannah
Location: Buena Vista, Colorado
Age: 37
Height: 178cm / 5'10"
Weight: 88kg / 194 lbs
Instagram: @sickmick83



The Frame

Mick, who is 178cm, rides a size large 29er frame. The frame is made of 6061-T6/ 6066-T6 aluminium and uses a one piece rocker with a four-bar Horst link with a floating shock design. You may notice, however, that he runs a mixed-wheeled setup with a 27.5 in the rear. The rear travel is somewhere in the region of 190mm.

Due to a lack of availability, the bike uses a 27.5 fork. However, Jon Stout, Mick's long-time mechanic and friend, feels there could be benefits to this setup and the low axle to crown that it yields. You can also note the low stem height.

The bike is awash with E13, Trickstuff, Kenda, ODI, Smanie, TRP and Promax. I understand from Stout that the setup is yet to be 100% finalized as the team is still to receive some updated parts for the new season as well as undergoing testing.

Coming from the Polygon Xquare One, it's a very different bike, and is much more conventional looking. The chainstays on the NS are 15mm longer and the reach, in the middle setting which Mick uses, is 22mm longer at 472mm. There is 8mm of adjustment either way on the Fuzz.

The height of your controls is personal preference and Mick not only utilises the full adjustment on the steerer but also uses a 27.5 fork; semi-internal cable routing on the Fuzz.



Suspension
Suntour Voro is used with a SAR 450lb spring.

The 27.5 SR Suntour Rux 38 fork, which has 3 tokens in and is pressured to 83PSI, runs minimal clearance on the 29" wheel.

A trunnion mountain shock is driven by a one-piece alloy rocker.



Drivetrain
A TRP 7 speed drivetrain is a relatively new addition for the team. Mick runs a particularly tight spread of gears with a 10-20T integrated E13 cassette, as opposed to the stock 9-21T.

A 34T chainring on 165mm E13 LG1R alloy cranks using a KMC X11 SL chain and Crankbrothers Mallet DH pedals.



Braking
The Maxima offers even more power compared to its predecessor the Direttissima. "Direttissima" is an Italian climbing term to describe the steepest fall line of a mountain and was sometimes hard to remember. Maxima, however, leaves no doubt to the brake's intentions.

Trickstuff Downhill 223mm discs front and rear with Trickstuff Power+ pads.



Wheels & Tyres
Both wheel models are the E13 LG1R DH, albeit in different sizes.

Mick currently runs Kenda Pinner Pro AGC 2.4" tyres front and rear at 26 and 28PSI respectively with no inserts.


Cockpit & Contact Points
ODI Elite Pro grips are Mick's go-to choice.

780mm Promax R30 bars are used with a subtly branded 50mm Raceface stem. Promax have their own DH stems in the works.

A Smanie DH saddle atop a Promax SP926 carbon seatpost.



85 Comments

  • 134 2
 So a 27 fork with a 29 front wheel, on a 29 frame with a 27 rear wheel.

4 options:

1. Geo does not matter
2. NS got the geo totally wrong
3. All this cancels out
4. Sick Mick is so sick that good geo is basically optional
  • 48 0
 The fork looses 20mm of stack height and the rear wheel looses 19mm of its radius. He basically just lowered the bb by 20mm. I think its kinda cool that the Rux can fit a 29 inch wheel. If the downtube allows it, you can make your bike into a mullet while preserving its original geometry and not spend 1500€. You just need a new rim, spokes and tyre.
  • 8 0
 All of the above
  • 12 0
 Geometry is basically a guide line. Try different stuff you might find something you like that the bike companies have not made it fashionable yet. I love putting my DH fork and dh wheels on my 160mm bike.
  • 2 0
 And NS always had high stack height.
  • 19 1
 A while back I was messing around with different shock strokes and wheel sizes on one of my bikes, everyone told me it was going to completely mess the geo/suspension/ whatever up. All combinations worked great. Decent geo isn’t that precise.
  • 2 0
 @endoplasmicreticulum: okay yeah, this is a really good point. You’re basically saying Option 3, it cancels out apart from the BB.

Mick will be running his setup pretty firm too. Just checked, the setup guide for a Rux says 70-80psi for his weight and he has 88psi. So his BB height at sag is probably a fair bit higher (20mm?!) than a normal rider anyway.

Sounds like Option 3 and Option 4 have it. Let’s hope he can avoid the mud.
  • 1 0
 Or all of the above.
  • 1 0
 3.
  • 15 0
 Option 5:
At the back the bike has a different swing-arm which brings up the BB higher and get the good head angle.
At the front there is enough option with fork stanchion height and stem / handlebar rise to get the right height.
and Voila you got yourself a sick mullet DH .

Also option 4 is always valid at any point in time ;-)
  • 6 1
 #4

Also....Specialized needs to bring back the Big Hit. Waaay ahead of its time haha
  • 1 0
 @endoplasmicreticulum: as of three hours ago, you'll also need a custom swingarm
  • 1 0
 4..
  • 47 0
 178cm is fourteen rats end to end
  • 29 0
 It means 5 minutes 8 seconds, based on the measurement of how long it takes a bald eagle to eat through a 178cm hot dog... America!!!
  • 8 0
 198cm is 14'6"... they tend to get a bit full and lose interest after the 190cm mark
  • 30 1
 That tyre clearance is tighter than my ass when I short a double ...
  • 3 1
 He's going with the Luke Strobel 2015 style.
  • 17 0
 178cm is 178cm
  • 2 0
 and 5.8 is not
  • 7 0
 @optimumnotmaximum: 178cm is 5.8 feet though

Just not 5 foot 8 inches
  • 16 3
 178 is 5'10'' , not 5'8'' #tinderbio
  • 11 1
 That looks like a, oh I just can’t do it
  • 4 0
 that looks like a sess....
  • 5 0
 …ion
  • 6 0
 Don't reckon he'll be running that fork in the mud!
  • 2 0
 Someone asked in the comments on another story why everyone doesn't just make 29ers or mullets. This is the answer: bar-height (among other things) is super personal and some people don't want a front end in the sky. Pretty cool they could get it worked out on the DH bike, but not sure if that lowered BB would work out on a trail bike though, and considering all the mullet conversion linkages out there, pretty much everyone else doesn't think it works either.
  • 3 0
 I think I'm going to try doing a true mullet bike - 26" on the front and 29 on the back! If I do it on my XC bike, it will turn even sharper! Why hasn't this been a thing yet? You want it to turn? Ok, you got it!
  • 3 2
 @sledMXer: it has been done, trek 69er
  • 1 0
 The Big Hit was way ahead of its time.
  • 1 1
 @bikeman5: Incorrect, the 69er was 29in front. But it was an XCish hardtail
  • 1 0
 @Baoas: Yes I know I have one, he mentioned trying it on his XC bike and said it hasn't been done before
  • 4 0
 That front tyre must rub the fork arch? That’s the tightest fit I’ve ever seen.
  • 3 0
 Just cut the center knobs
  • 28 0
 @colincolin: a shorter knob always helps in a tight fit.. Well, that's my excuse anyway.
  • 1 0
 His case is not that bad for a 27.5 fork.
In my case, I'm less lucky: my SR Suntour 27,5 Auron (non boost), which I like very much, almost cannot accept the wonderful 2,50" Hutchinson Griffus I installed. The clearance of the arch only leaves 4 poor millimeters, which makes it unridable in mud, gravel and stony terrains.
A pity, cos this tyre's wonderful...
  • 2 0
 Just cut the fork arch. Why loose traction by cutting knobs?
  • 3 2
 '"Direttissima" is an Italian climbing term to describe the steepest fall line of a mountain and was sometimes hard to remember.'

Pretty sure it means " directly" or "direct route" in almost any context, not just climbing.

Hard to remember for who?
  • 5 0
 88kg guy is stacked
  • 22 5
 88kg wet out the shower, wetter than a blind lesbian at a fish market
  • 3 1
 Stealthy & simple. Love it. Suntour make him a new fork lower please before he hurts himself. Its not like 29" wheels are new.
  • 3 0
 For racing in wet just cut the arch. Nice to see NS moving forward in non-dirt disciplines!
  • 2 0
 when the sponsors and the world of dh tell you that the 29 go stronger but you are better off with 27.5 and your mechanic has to work miracles!
  • 4 0
 178cm is 5'10"
  • 7 0
 This is clearly a typo, they meant 178mm of something else and 5'10'' of height Wink
  • 3 0
 Yeah they mixed up 5'8'' with 5.8
  • 4 0
 Mik on N. S?
  • 1 0
 whole UR team
  • 3 0
 I’m surprised Suntour still don’t have a 29” casting for their rux.
  • 3 0
 Since when is Mick Hannah from Colorado?!
  • 5 0
 He's been living in the US for some time now. More than a few years.
  • 2 0
 @neimbc: and he was about 20 mins from in NC for awhile, and never made a attempt to go find him. Maybe my wife was correct telling me that wouldn’t be a smart idea.
  • 4 1
 Looks like a Session.

Are we still doing that (asks for a friend)?
  • 2 0
 We do
  • 3 0
 I also got a friend with a question: is it nowadays more accepted to mention that something does surprisingly not look like a session or to point out the usual sessionousness of something?
  • 1 0
 I guess you can ride this in muddy conditions without a front brake - which would give it a cleaner look...but then there's the mud.
  • 3 0
 Looks much better than his last bike! congrats Mick.
  • 3 0
 178 is a shoe?
  • 1 0
 True, true ! LoL !
  • 2 4
 178 is 5'83" in common sense units
  • 2 0
 5 ' 8 '' = 172.72 cm
5 ' 10 '' = 177.8 cm
  • 2 1
 I'm sure it's amazing but it looks totally boring in comparison to all the glamour bike shots of recent days on pinkbike...
  • 3 1
 If you squint a bit, it looks like a Fuzzy Session.
  • 7 0
 Coming soon to a craft ale house near you.
  • 2 0
 living legend of the DH world.
  • 1 0
 That looks a bit chucked together...
  • 8 0
 Well at least it doesn't look chucked-up like the Polygon
  • 1 0
 Agree. That crankset is from 2013.
  • 1 0
 How does that wheel actually turn?!
  • 1 0
 That's what I call an unconventional bike
  • 1 0
 To be fair, Richie Rude is 90k plus if I remember correctly.
  • 1 0
 Where in Buena Vista, CO was there terrain for a DH bike? Anybody?
  • 2 0
 HA. I had this same exact thought. The only thing I could think of would be the ride down from Mt. Antero, or maybe Brown's Creek? But it seems funny seeing those pictures of the bike in Utah, with BV called out.
  • 1 0
 Since when Suntour makes a coil huh ? When can I buy it
  • 1 0
 probably simplified DVO Jade chassis, same like new Suntour TriAir shock, which comes from Topaz shock... DVO stuff is made from Suntour
  • 2 0
 @VlajiciStrapec: yea that's the same info I was able to find on the good ol' google lol. Curious to see what will be the price
  • 1 0
 That tire clearance is sketchy come race day
  • 1 0
 gotta say it looks like a session
  • 1 0
 i like only the grip on the bike...
  • 1 1
 Such a shame to see a rider as good as Mick on a basic budget frame like this. His setup is proof.
  • 1 0
 SRAM and Shimano in shambles
  • 1 0
 I want those brakes
  • 1 1
 Had no idea Mick Hannah lives in Colorado





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