Eminent Cycles Launches the Haste - First Look

Nov 20, 2017
by Richard Cunningham  
Eminent Cycles Haste
The beginning of an adventure: Eminent Cycle founders Jeff Soncrant (left) and Kevin Sigismondo show off their Haste enduro racer as their San Diego headquarters near completion.


Kevin Sigismondo and Jeff Soncrant have been riding together for years. Both are all-mountain/gravity junkies who also happen to be engineers. Both were lucky enough to land jobs in the mountain bike industry, and it was there where the two forged their friendship and assimilated the building blocks that would eventually led them to pose a life-altering question:

bigquotesWhy settle for most of what we wanted in a bike when we could make one that was exactly what we wanted?

Easier said than done. Bikes are pretty damn good these days, so moving the needle requires a lot more horsepower than a good frame design, a fresh take on suspension, and the right numbers. Undaunted, Kevin and Jeff quit their day jobs and founded "Eminent Cycles." Three and half years later, they had burned through a big pile of money, a number of aluminum prototypes, and had rejected 85 "almost perfect" carbon frames.

Anticipating that elite-level riders might want the choice, after the chassis was finalized, they worked out suspension tunes with Cane Creek, Fox, and RockShox. When they were finally satisfied with their creation they named the 160-millimeter-travel all-mountain bike the "Haste" and that's when the hard work began.
Eminent Cycles Haste
Jeff Soncrant with the final aluminum test mule.

bigquotesWhen you purchase a bike, typically you are you buying a standard bike with standard components. You'll say, 'Well, I might not like that fork or that shock.' You'll know you'll have to spend money to replace some of the components to get the performance you want. When you order from us, you can choose your components, or furnish information using our bike fit calculator that we'll use to select the proper saddle, handlebar width, dropper post length, and other components, so your bike fits your preferences and riding style.Kevin Sigismondo

Direct-Sales Business Model

To succeed on the business end of their endeavor, Kevin and Jeff needed to pry elite-level customers away from the likes of Santa Cruz, Yeti, Specialized and Trek. To that end, they devised a direct sales model that gives potential customers wide range of options a to choose from. Eminent's standard builds range from $5200 to $7800, but their customers are encouraged to tailor their builds by hand-picking drivetrain, cockpit and suspension components from the selection that they stock. If they don't have the item, Eminent will special order it. The bike is then assembled, the transmission and suspension is adjusted, and finally, every Haste is test-ridden before it is shipped to the customer's doorstep in a special box with only its handlebar and front wheel removed. Ideally, when your Haste arrives, you could be headed out for a ride in ten minutes or less.

Eminent Cycles Haste
Kevin Sigismondo developed Eminent's reusable box with a US manufacturer. The Haste arrives tuned and tested with only the handlebar and front wheel removed.

According to its founders, Eminent's strategy is three-fold: provide a class-leading, good-looking bike; use the savings afforded by selling direct to customers to offer higher-end components and more competitive pricing; and personalize the ownership experience, beginning with the purchasing process and continuing beyond, with a web-based help line which will offer tuning, maintenance, and setup advice.

It's a simple plan - one that a number of bike brands are considering as the likes of YT, Canyon and Commencal grow stronger every day. Eminent's challenge is to span the chasm between bargain bike buyers shopping for price, and the sport's high-end clientele who demand superior performance, but also choose particular brands that verify their skill sets and identities. Read Eminent's PR and you get the impression that they are ready to to rule the world, but the reality is that it is tough to earn the trust of experienced riders, and that doesn't happen overnight. Jeff says that Eminent plans to build sales locally and grow organically, so they can make adjustments along the way. As it stands, Eminent has a good strategy, three employees, one bike, and a positive, winning attitude.

Eminent Cycles Haste


Introducing the Haste

I had the opportunity to ride the Haste on familiar trails near San Diego, California, where Eminent is based, and to discuss its finer details with Jeff, Kevin, and the newest member of the team, sales and marketing manager Paul Cusick, who is also an avid rider. The Haste was designed as collaboration between the two principals, with Jeff shouldering the lion's share of the mechanical engineering and working out its four-bar rear suspension design. Jeff says his role was 60-percent product engineering and 40-percent aesthetics, while Kevin's role in the Haste's development was 60-percent graphic design. Both participated in the vetting process (the fun stuff): test riding, judging suspension kinematics and experimenting with various forks and shocks.

Eminent Cycles Haste
The rear brake caliper is mounted to an articulated link.
Eminent Cycles Haste
The shock's lower eyelet connects to an extension.

Much of that initial process took place aboard aluminum-framed test mules. When they arrived at the function and geometry they wanted, they spent a lot of time getting the carbon version of their chassis to be visually appealing, and then crunched the numbers to ensure that their graphic rendition did not compromise the integrity of the structure. "We wanted the Haste to turn heads," said Jeff. "People are visual beings, so the look is as important as the function." Once the frame's shape and its carbon lay-up schedules were sketched out, the final step (like it is for most of the world's bike brands) was a trip to China, where Eminent had selected a manufacturer that specialized in the quality of construction and smaller production runs they needed.

Eminent Cycles Haste
Fatigue testing prototype carbon frames.


Construction and Features

The Haste chassis is built around 27.5-inch wheels and incorporates design elements, both familiar and unique, into a profile is sure to stand out in a crowd. Most obvious is its AFS (Active Float System) 160-millimeter, four-bar rear suspension.

The parallelogram configuration is similar to Mert Lawwill's breakthrough design used by Gary Fisher and Yeti in the '90s, but it takes advantage of modern kinematics, materials, and construction methods to provide a level of performance which could not be attained back then.
Yeti Lawwill 5 DH bike
Yeti 90's era DH racer featuring Mert Lawwill's four-bar rear suspension design. - Yeti Image

The suspension's upper link directly drives the shock, which is connected to the swingarm instead of the frame's front section, reportedly, to isolate the shock from lateral forces that could create friction. A relatively linear shock rate was selected to favor descending, and a low-leverage ratio provides more sensitivity to tuning inputs and allows the shock-spring to support a wider range of rider weights.

Eminent Cycles Haste
The Haste's floating rear caliper is configured to isolate the suspension from braking torque.

The brake caliper "floats" between the rear axle and a ball-joint attached to the swingarm in an effort to isolate brake torque from the suspension action. Jeff said that the floating caliper was both necessary and beneficial to the suspension, which ultimately resulted in better brake modulation and a smoother feel while descending.


Motivation for the frame's modern look was as much for aesthetics as it was for function. The shock tunnel eliminated complicated linkages and made room for a single downtube water bottle, and the straight lines of the front-section matched the angular looking rear suspension, while providing a low stand-over height across their selection of frame sizes. One compromise that stands out in the Haste's frame design is the external dropper post actuator. According to Jeff, "Having an exposed cable between the shock and frame could make noise and cause rubbing. Our routing path is cleaner and with less exposed cable."

Haste
Externally actuated dropper keeps the housing clear of the shock.
Eminent Cycles Haste
Suspension rate is optimized for both coil and air-sprung shocks.

By the numbers, the Haste reflects its creator's influence. The 73-degree seat tube angle is conservative, while its 65.5-degree head tube angle, 17.4-inch chainstays, and generous reach mirror current trends. Although there is much emphasis upon personalizing the Haste's components, size-specific changes in the chainstay length and seat tube angles are missing from the geometry chart. In defense of Eminent, almost all high-end bike brands ignore those important details, but it seems like an opportunity missed to further personalize the chassis.

Haste Geo


Other construction notables include full-complement Enduro ball bearings at key suspension pivots, with Igus plain bearings where angular rotation is minimal. There are guide-tubes to simplify the internal cable routing, provisions for one or two-by drivetrains, and a press-fit type bottom bracket. The frame has plenty of clearance between the rear stays for wider tires and, like most modern mountain bikes, the Haste has Boost axle spacing. Eminent plans to offer the Haste in five sizes (molds are expensive, so they are rolling out the most popular sizes first) which are designated by their effective seat tube lengths, rather than "small, medium, large, etc." Three color options will be available: red, blue, and natural carbon black.

Eminent Cycles Haste
Eminent photo


First impressions

I rode the Haste in a familiar zone that included steep, loose climbs and a variety of fast-paced singletrack trails. The descents were technical enough to get a feel of the bike's potential, but nothing that would challenge a DH bike. There were enough rocks to wake up the suspension and the dry soil provided ample opportunities to pay attention to the bike's cornering potential. Harold Preston, a familiar face in PB reviews, also put some time on the Haste to contribute his input. Both of us were in agreement that the bike's rear end felt smooth and in control through the entire performance envelope - up, down, around corners, and under braking. Its weight was average for enduro-class carbon bikes (I'd estimate it was just shy of 30 pounds) and like most good all-mountain designs, it responds best when its rider is centered between the wheels.

Acceleration and pedaling feel efficient in the sense that the Haste maintains momentum well and doesn't lag with each pedal stroke when powering hard up a climb. It feels much like a Giant Reign, transferring pedal strokes into smooth acceleration, but lacking the snappy-feeling direct response that you'd get from an Ibis or a Pivot in the same performance class. Where it impresses most is how well the rear end tracks over choppy surfaces without disturbing your pedaling cadence.

Prefaced by the usual first-ride disclaimer, if you ignore the hubris, the Haste delivers on the promises laid out in Eminent's press release. It looks sharp, it tracks where you point it on the descents and holds its line similarly around the bends. I'd prefer a steeper seat tube angle, but it's no slouch up technical climbs and it inspires confidence on the descents, where you'll need it most. It's a fun machine to ride fast, which is exactly what its creators built it for. "Ultimate?" "Class Leading?" "Breakthrough?" - I'll leave that up to you to decide. What I can say is that Eminent's mission statement: delivering an elite-level trail bike to the customer's doorstep that has been custom outfitted, tuned and test-ridden, is a solid first step. It's fitting that the Haste is an enduro bike, because success in the boutique bicycle business is a tall mountain to climb before the fun begins. I wish them luck. - RC

Eminent Cycles Haste
(From Left) Paul Cusick, Kevin Sigismondo, and Jeff Jeff Soncrant.

216 Comments

  • + 140
 So two guys get together that love bikes and want to build something cool. Finally build a bike that rides well and looks good only to have a bunch of people that have never ridden or even seen the bike rip it apart for various small reasons. Its such a sign of the times. All of these things that people would have just looked at and shrugged off years ago, are now getting lengthy negative explanations. It must be so frustrating for these two dudes (who are probably pretty smart) that are just trying to follow their passion, feed their kids and build something new.
  • + 32
 Hey, I certainly wish them luck since they're locals. However, to play devils advocate... A) this is the internet and in case you're new, you should take everything with a grain of salt; B) for this much money, it's entirely fair to have high expectations.
  • + 13
 Yeah tough crowd, I think it looks great!
  • + 6
 Regardless of the comments, this is a major accomplishment and these guys should be applauded for bringing another solid option to the mtb commmunity.
  • + 19
 I’m a chef and the same bloody thing happens with restaurant critics. Too many people with their throw away comments destroying years of hard work. And too many readers taking the comments as gospel. Please if you ever read something ensure you know where the information is coming from and why you should believe it.
  • + 7
 Yeah, I remember back in the day when people only said nice things about new bikes.
  • + 9
 They have entered a very tough market really. They don't simply make a decent bike for decent price. They have chosen to make a butique, carbon and exotic bikes which targets picky people with lots of money.
  • - 4
flag Cusalabanjura (Nov 20, 2017 at 23:34) (Below Threshold)
 @ajayflex: Looks like a Zerode
  • + 1
 Amen
  • + 1
 @Cusalabanjura: NO IT DOES NOT !!! Smile
  • + 7
 @ajayflex: You say "tough" I say 'ignorant'. Welcome to the PB boards where casual experience on one bike makes one an expert on all of them.
  • + 1
 @CaptainSnappy: true
People pick one number (seat tube angle in this case) and bash everything to the ground. This bike might as well be at a sweetspot geometry wise.

Every bike has an advantage and a disadvantage. The question from an engineering standpoint is whether these are balanced out correctly. and there are millions of ways to do that.

Rear end of the bike looks a bit bulky somehow tho. (but thats just me)
  • + 98
 Pinkbike is such a friendly place!
  • + 0
 It’s eminent they have an uphill battle with his new bike!
  • - 6
flag rube (Nov 20, 2017 at 21:31) (Below Threshold)
  • + 12
 Wonder when Dr. Dre gonna come out with his own brand.
  • + 0
 @chyu: He would Beats a dead horse.
  • + 79
 External dropper, 73 degree seat tube angle, and bikes starting around $5,000 with no stand out ride qualities. No thanks.
  • + 23
 seat tube angle is no go for larger riders
  • + 1
 The actual seat-tube angle is 68deg, but it’s angled rearward which gives an effective seattube angle of 73deg.
  • + 9
 @cwatt: At what saddle height do you get 73deg? If that’s measured at the height of the top/center of the headtube then that’s a very slack STA at full saddle height.
  • - 16
flag TheLongMan (Nov 20, 2017 at 11:09) (Below Threshold)
 @bogey: how can the angle change at different post heights?????
  • + 5
 @bogey — I accidently reversed the numbers. Seatpost is angled/tipped back 68deg. So when you extend your post, it’s extending at a 68deg angle. (At least this is my understanding looking at the diagram and geo)

@TheLongMan It doesn’t change at different post heights, its just that the angle the seat-tube extends does not originate at the bottom bracket where traditional seat-tube angles are measured from. The origin of the actual seattube angle is 68deg (this is the angle seatpost extends at), and the effective seattube angle (the angle originating from the bottom bracket upto the top of the seatpost opening) is 73degrees.
  • + 15
 @TheLongMan: as the seat is raised or lowered the effective angle changes but not the actual, slack actual angles are crap for dropper posts and place tall riders too far behind the bottom bracket for climbing, i don't get why manufacturers don't get this
  • + 7
 Surely that seatube length is excessively long and the reach is rather short, I'd want the third from the left reach wise but at a 471 seatube there is no way i could clamber on that Transition are on the right tracks, 410 seatube length with 450mm reach, that's what I'm talking about!
  • + 1
 Chainstays should be different for smaller sizes, taller riders should be OK.
  • + 4
 @mikekay: Usually because the designer is short.
  • + 2
 @enrico650: No the rear centre isn't long enough for tall riders and is okay for size small.

Least of the problems with this thing though. 432mm seat tube and 411mm reach? LOL!

Ellsworth Mk2.
  • + 4
 @mikekay: forget manufacturers - about 10% of the riding population gets this - the % that are over 6' 4". people give me blank stares when I rant about this.
  • + 0
 I for one am glad to see a shorter reach than "normal". I normally ride a large bike, but demoed a Pivot Mach 5.5 in Medium - at 6ft tall I felt super stretched out and had to run the 125mm dropper with like 5 inches of post sticking out. I would need at least a 175mm dropper to fit on a medium... but smaller bikes cant fit larger droppers.
  • + 3
 @mikekay: Numbers that I use to quantify seat angel are TT - Reach = Distance behind BB. Bikes with large numbers feel like you are pedalling a recumbent. For an XL here, we are looking at 186mm which is huge. I guarantee this bike feels horrible climbing. Compared to say...Transition Patrol for same size = 140mm. They get it!
  • + 1
 External droppers are good from a service standpoint. Servicing a Reverb Stealth, for example, requires you to remove the seatpost while an externally routed one doesn't have to be. The insertion length is also shorter than an internal one, and you can slam that post down without having to worry about that mechanism at the bottom. I damaged the hose on my Reverb Stealth when it got kinked by the pivot that goes through the seatpost. It's a nice looking bike--reminds me of a Macross robot. I'll be interested in their alloy trail bike when they come up with one.
  • + 46
 It always amuses me to see these suspension kinematics movies. It's nice to see how it works, but I'd rather look at a travel/force chart : It gives me a better understanding of the suspension "feel".
  • + 36
 I agree. Vital almost always does a great job of supplying all of the relevant graphs and data to objectively evaluate a bike's suspension design. It would be nice to see Pinkbike start to supply this information too as I think it is a super important factor when choosing one bike over another.
  • + 4
 I actually made a similar post in the Trek Session review earlier today. I don’t totally understand travel/force charts, so I look for axle path and chain growth / pedal kickback. The problem with these videos for me is that it’s only compressing the rear suspension which is unlikely to ever occur during actual riding. I’d like to see compression of both front and rear to get a better idea of how the bike is going to behave during compression.
  • + 10
 @650boss: > It would be nice to see Pinkbike start to supply this information too as I think it is a super important factor when choosing one bike over another.

It would be nice if manufacturers put a simple chart with leverage ratio and anti-squat vs travel position on their website next to geo numbers.
  • + 3
 If anything this one showed it has a lot of pedal kickback as it compresses
  • + 1
 Yeah, some graphs would be cool. This is the first 4-bar I have ever seen which require a floating brake caliper. I wonder what trade they have made here, because I cannot see any obvious benefits of such design. Or maybe this is just a very plush bike for dentists, thus 0% (so you can permanently hold rear brake) antirise and linear kinematics?
  • + 2
 @cwatt: exactly. They could at least let the air out of the fork first and compress both ends together. This kind of gif makes my head spin. Show us the wheel going up, not the frame going down!
  • + 3
 @lkubica: The older Kona 4 bar designs used to use the floating caliper, its nothing new, just depends on the design of the bike as to whether it is necessary
  • + 2
 @SonofBovril: Konas used single pivot design aka false 4-bar. This is a real 4-bar design, since it has a pivot on chainstays near rear axle. It is a variation about horst link, not linkage driven single pivot like on Kona.
  • + 5
 For those interested the graphs are already on Vital's review. This bike is relatively linear (low progressivity). Antisquats are good
  • + 1
 @650boss: So true - I purchased my Capra on the basis of those graphs - it was just what I was looking for.
  • + 39
 Pretty good looking bike, but they have 3 billion competitors. It would be like creating a startup company right now to come up with a fresh new smart phone; or hey, maybe a new app that lets you post pictures and have other people like them or comment on them.
  • + 23
 That app sounds cool......like!
  • + 3
 I don’t know how long OnePlus has been around, but they’re killing it these days.
  • + 6
 But... they couldn't find a bike that they liked!
  • + 7
 something where you could put your photos on the line... that sounds cool
  • + 1
 @dwojo: Damn, beat me to it.
  • + 4
 The last new company to really shake things up was YT and they did it with price and a new distribution model. The quality of their bikes ensured their success. It's not like anyone is going to figure out some new suspension design will make an XC bike handle big drops and 40mph brake bumps. If you want a fast car, it still takes horsepower, low clearance, wide axles etc.
  • + 26
 Considering the Lawwill 4banger and the last version of the Straight 8 were some of the best bikes i've ridden in my 30 yrs, this looks interesting.
  • + 2
 Indeed. My buddies Straight 6 was the jam!
  • + 1
 Indeed
  • + 1
 I too think it looks interesting but don’t like look of that dogbone linkage thang.
  • + 3
 I remember them being super, super plush, but that was a long time ago, so hard to compare to modern designs.
  • + 3
 You should be looking at Rotec then. After the Straight 8 I had Rotec. The RL9’s I had were the best DH Bikes I’ve had in terms of Suspension feel.
  • + 2
 Yep, nailed it. Rotecs got drawings for new one but haven't seen an update on it for a while.
  • + 4
 mandatory mert link here............................


youtu.be/5mA-GJWh_As?t=4m10s


mert

.nuff said.
  • + 2
 I had a Rotec RL9 and loved the Lawwill suspension. Very interested to try this bike. It did have its drawbacks, goofy rear hub because of the floater and more importantly I ended up running it single speed because the rear derailleur hung so low it caught on everything. It looks like the rear link on this bike addresses that issue. I would love to see a 6” ish endure bike with Lawwill suspension and a gear box.
  • + 2
 @sethius: the RLi is out now. In all wheel sizes it’s a beaut
  • + 1
 @yetiboyjay: oh really? I keep watch on their instagram and the enduro web page he has up but haven't seen much. Got any links?
  • + 1
 @sethius: www.wearerotec.com

There you go. Whole load of new frames coming. The Lawwill 9 is the most refined Lawwill frame yet it my opinion. All those annoying niggles sorted out.
  • + 15
 The Ultimate enduro bike. I'm sure I've read that claim before somewhere. . .
  • + 9
 That is one seriously complicated/sophisticated rear brake mount!

Would be great to get a better close up of it. Rail bearing on the swingarm whilst pivoting on the rear axle?

Highly ambitious, good luck in your venture!!!
  • + 1
 From the motion that is shown it looks like there must also be a pivot for the brake mount on the chainstay in addition to a linear slide...basically these guys have managed to fit Switch Infinity technology into your brake mount in order to make their system work.
  • + 2
 @shizzon: the original system suffered from brake jack (4banger/straight6). Schwinn engineered and prototyped a similar floating link to isolate brake forces (similar to what was on the DH versions) but never prouced it. This looks pretty clean IMO, interested to see how it functions.
  • + 1
 Seems kinda ridiculous. So many bikes work fine without this extra complication.
  • + 1
 @skelldify: single pivot FTW
  • + 11
 Don't care about aesthetics but that seat angle it'll be worse the more you rise the seat post, slacken even more with sag, and basically back to 2012... shame
  • + 6
 I like the Lawill, always have, I like their clean solution to the floating caliper that a Lawill requires and I like the look of the bike. I don't like the geo. Seatpost is too slack, head tube is too steep and wheelbase is too short, but I ride a Pole so maybe I'm a freak, but I'm never going back to the old school geo.
  • + 4
 When a Mondraker has sex with a Canyon and they decide to call their kid a really bad name......

Seriously though rad looking bike doods. I happen to really like both Mondraker and Canyon.

You guys need to work on your marketing though. Eminent Haste has got to be 1. and 2. on the list for worst name choices. Even the definition is tres wanky:

eminent
ˈɛmɪnənt/Submit
adjective
1.
(of a person) famous and respected within a particular sphere
  • + 3
 I'd never buy a bike this expensive but I did think Eminent Haste was a pretty cool name. Bikers like ridiculous names. It makes a nice polar opposite to the equally ridiculous (in a good way) gnar-speak with which we are all so familiar.
  • + 8
 Damn that's a nice looking bike!
  • + 4
 I wouldn't call 411 mm reach on the medium "generous" - it's one of the shortest on the market (and really generous 432 mm seattube is definitely a size medium by modern standards).

And sizes are not "designated by their effective seat tube lengths" - rather top tube lengths.
  • + 4
 I wish these guys the best of luck with this, however...
As has often been said (here and other places), to make a million in the bike business, you need to start with two.

While I am personally a fan of this style of suspension, it isn't a game changer, won't steel business from other very well established brands/product, and they are basically starting at the ground level with no reputation in terms of ride, durability, after service, warranty support, etc (not a small thing considering the level of investment). Comments to branding aside, in a crowded market (loaded with solid options) with no demonstrable point of differentiation I hope they have deep pockets and are ready to play the long game.
  • + 3
 I feel like they should have done that dropper routing internal. I know some people like ease of access for external routing, but it would look co much cleaner with out that cable being there, for me it takes a bit away from an otherwise very clean looking bike.
  • + 19
 allows for a longer dropper though as there is no need to have a certain about of space below the dropper for the mechanism. I actually dont mind this.
  • + 11
 @2bigwheels: Except almost all of the "longer" dropper post options are only available in internal routing so far.
  • + 4
 @Buggyr333:
Yeah, you arent wrong but if a small company is willing to show really the easiest work around isnt that bad looking, maybe another company comes along and adopts this as well... yada yada yada shit about snowballs and hills and what not... and maybe one day there is a few more offerings.

I miss the outboard routing of my KS DX model mostly cause even if I f*cked the lever or wrecked the cable I could manually pull the mechanism and have the seat work. not often do I like my bike to have extra cables hanging out of my frame and what not but in this case Is make an exception.
  • + 6
 @2bigwheels: having one less cable to have to route through the frame is not necessarily a bad thing.
  • + 2
 @ReformedRoadie: agreed. I love my bike with its clean no cable look but at times I want to f*cking kick a small dog having to deal with all the internal routing bullshit lol
  • + 6
 @2bigwheels: I almost think that if you're tall enough to want a longer dropper, you're going to find the actual STA too slack. It has effective of 73, but actual of 68, so similar to a Following, if you're tall you'll find that you're effective STA is much slacker than 73.
  • + 3
 @TucsonDon: for certain designs for sure but there are plenty of companies who could adopt it and it would work.

I never thought much about affective seat tube angle until I had a bike with some proper geometry numbers and realised how much more pleasent a steeper angle was.
  • + 3
 @ReformedRoadie: function over fashion any day
  • + 2
 @ReformedRoadie: But, it's still internally routed. Just not where it meets the seatpost.
  • + 1
 @2bigwheels: too bad the seat tube is on the slack side and has a big Bend in it so it won't accept a long dropper.
  • + 1
 Also external droppers are getting rarer all the time.
  • + 3
 Hmm... branding and marketing missteps aside, I'm intrigued and would like to ride one.

The 463mm reach, while not pushing the outer boundaries of geo, is right in the sweet spot for my just under 5'-11 frame, and for keeping things playful on the less than warp speed trails and big climbs that I normally ride.

And I could mitigate the slack-ish seat angle by sliding the seat rails forward. Shouldn't have to, but oh well...

Despite the often knee-jerk hatred for it, this exact type of... mostly-internal-with-a-stationary-external-end type of dropper post routing is actually my preference. My current ride gives the choice of both full-internal routing, and also offers it just like this bike, and after 2 years I'm glad I chose the latter.

There's never been a downsides for me, but significant upsides like almost instant dropper removal and installation. On my current bike it saves almost 1 foot of cable and housing. I'll take free weight savings wherever I can get them.

Though I suppose there are a limited number of companies that offer this style (my KS, and the FOX dropper above... does anybody else offer them?)

The press fit BB is a strange choice in this day and age, and a "purchase deterrent" that you'd think a small fledgeling company would never consider.

But again my current bike has press fit, and the sweet press fit BB conversion that I installed 2.5 years ago has never been touched since, and is as smooth and creak free as ever.

With all of the odd and angular mechanical things going on with the rear suspension and brake, this thing could have ended up looking like crap, but I think they've really done well with, if not nailed the aesthetic.

Sure, it looks kinda like a _______... but just like in music, there's only so many notes you can play, and someone else has already played them.
  • + 3
 I love the look of the bike and the fact they're bringing the lawwill system back, that brake arm shows a lack of mechanical knowledge to me though, its basically obsolete as the whole point of the lawwill design is that the brake arm is incorporated into the linkage, like with treks ABP etc, they only needed to make the brake attach to the same link the wheel is mounted to have achieved the anti-brake jack effect!? Forces would then be transferred radially into the seat stay achieving nearly the same effect... The brake arm will work slightly better as it pivots exactly around the wheel axle but I can only see marginal improvements at the cost of extra parts and maintenance, more things to go wrong :-(
  • + 1
 Back on the original Lawwills he had it set up so they could tune the the breaking to either squat,raise or keep the back end neutral. Always considered this design to be way ahead of it time. Especially since the original prototypes were from around 91' or so.
  • + 2
 If it's mounted to the rear link, where the axle is, you would end up horrible brake jack. Yes jack, not squat/stiffening. The OG tomac 204s had this setup and were dangerous with it. The homegrowns had it as well and it was a problem there but they had less travel so it was less significant.

The OG yeti lawwills had a similar linkage to the one above, but they used a pivot at the front, a pivot at the rear, and an additional pivot that allowed the linkage to "scissor" and neutralize brake forces. forums.mtbr.com/attachments/yeti/625227d1310455305-yeti-lawwill-custom-race-frame-need-help-identification-05.jpg

Not sure why they used a sliding bushing instead of a scissor link as above, perhaps to avoid a patent, perhaps to save weight.
  • + 1
 @sandwich: That's cool. I remember seeing a few different configurations of the floating mount. I remember reading Mert talking about being able to adjust how the floater interacts with the suspension. On a side note, I always thought the new Demo was really similar to the Lawwill, even reminds me of race car suspension with unequal length A-arms. Kind of a stretch but If you squint your eyes a little....
  • + 3
 Was so excited by the looks and design until I looked at the geometry numbers. Would've consider it had it not been for the 68/73 STA ruining the size option with the optimal reach I'd prefer.
  • + 1
 That plus fitting a long dropper post on the long seat tube. Kinematic is interesting though. I'd be curious to try
  • + 2
 Those chainstays would be long for a 29'er... I think way the shock mounts probably takes up some real estate between the tire and BB.

Best wishes for the fellow 'Diegans, though. Hope they make it! Look me up when you're designing a 29" trail bike!
  • + 1
 Go and look at the length on the Session 27.5" review.

Short is not optimal. It isn't 2010.
  • + 3
 @jclnv: That's a DH bike, man. I think a Bronson or Nomad is a better comparison for this bike, and they're both in like the 17.0 range... In fact I think the Nomad is like 16.9. To even keep it in the Trek family, the Remedy is like 17.1" or something.
  • + 1
 @pinhead907: So what's the downside if bikes that are purely designed for handling over pedalling have longer RC?
  • + 1
 @jclnv: Probably not much - I think all else equal, the longer RC gives you a longer wheelbase, which helps stability. But on the other hand, if you're concerned about slower speed handling then the longer chainstay isn't good. Compared to the main bikes this is likely going to be shopped against, that chainstay is long.
  • + 1
 @pinhead907: Santa Cruz are not a good guide for chainstays though - the new Chameleon hardtail has 415mm 'stays (adjustable up to 430mm) and a 73 deg seat angle on every size, S through to XL. I'm 6'2", on a hardtail with 425mm 'stays and a 72 deg SA; you basically have to kiss the stem to keep the front down on middlingly steep climbs, so a shorter rear, even with the steeper SA, is not a good idea.

If you think about the frame as a lever, pivoting about the rear axle, with your weight through the BB, the shorter the CS, the less leverage your weight is exerting on the front wheel, so short rears actually shift grip away from the front, at which point all you can do to restore it is lean forwards, putting more weight through your arms, which will make arm pump worse and have you OTB much more easily.
Besides, every brand scales their front triangles across the sizes, but only some (Giant, Norco, etc) bother to scale the rear to match, so handling isn't consistent across most brands' ranges and tall guys end up with bikes which climb horribly.
  • + 1
 @pinhead907: Yet compared to bikes that are pushing the limits of geo like the Pole and Geometron, it's short. The longer the RC the more weight is on the front tire, the more weight on the front tire the more cornering grip, and ultimately faster cornering regardless of speed.
  • + 1
 @Smevan: Dude, for sure - you can't just shorten the chainstay without paying for it. But on by the same token, longer RC means it's harder to manual and tight switchbacks will be a PITA. So you an jclnv sound like big guys, while I'm firmly 'medium' in stature. I have 2 bikes, one has about 10mm shorter chainstay than the other, and I greatly prefer the bike with the shorter stays. Granted, there are several other differences between the two bikes and I don't do any shuttling and pedal up every little hill that I descend - so that tempers my view and it's not exactly apples-to-apples. But I think a 'modern' bike with a steep seat angle and short chain stays is more fun if you're pedaling it. And I do disagree with you about Santa Cruz - the Bronson/Nomad are precisely the bikes this competes against. And I live in San Diego, I see what we ride on the trails here. If you don't ride a Santa Cruz here, then you ride an Intense. I'm a freak because I don't ride either.
  • + 1
 @jclnv: soon the bigger companies will be doing what Pole is doing. The bikes climb and descend better than what's currently out there. The question is, whose going to be first?
  • + 1
 @pinhead907: You're right, I'm around 6'2", so I'm largely talking about L/XL frame sizes, rather than trying to forcibly fit mile-long chainstays on everyone's bikes Wink Then again, most bikes have 435, rather than 425mm CS now and the world didn't end, so slightly longer CS probably wouldn't hurt anybody. Short rears are a genuine problem on larger frames, though.

My point about Santa Cruz wasn't that they aren't a valid comparison (they're probably quite a good one), but they've spec'd some pretty nonsense CS lengths on bikes like the Chameleon, so comparing another bike to a Santa Cruz doesn't guarantee that its CS lengths aren't nonsense too. They seem to still be in the rut of spec'ing short CS across all their bikes, without thinking whether that's actually the best way to do things.

A lot brands only make one-size rear triangles because it save a load of cost on carbon mould tooling, but it's a silly way to design frames.
  • + 1
 @Smevan: I think you're right that of the things that almost never scale with frame size, RC is the one that really should.

I did see that the new Pole Machine has 10mm *shorter* RC than the evo link does... So I think they may be giving a nod to the fact that huge wheelbases can be cumbersome. I think the Pole Evolink has a solid 100mm longer wheelbase than my 29'er trailbike - that would definitely be noticeable (for both good and bad - but if you're only climbing fireroads and doing lots of descents, sure, it'd be mostly good).

I think on hardtails, having a steep seat angle makes the ride too harsh. I think Kona makes a HT with ~75 degree seat angle with 415mm stays. I haven't ridden it, but it sounds like it should be really agile and really brutal to sit on for 20 miles. I think SC uses a slacker seat angle on their hard trails to smooth the ride out a little bit. But ya, it can imagine that on a larger size that front end would probably get a little floaty going uphill.
  • + 2
 Shock placement isn't ideal, even with the fender. No internal routing limits dropper options. Frame isn't much of a looker in my opinion, not that it matters much. Just another trail bike... no thanks. Plenty of options at that price (or much cheaper) with far fewer compromises.
  • + 2
 Agreed. To me it seems like there were a few details that were missed if they were really setting out to make a "Ultimate" "Class Leading" "Breakthrough" kind of bike. And even with the long chainstays, at 6'3", the 68 degree actual seat tube angle would have me sitting way over the back wheel, degrading the seated performance of the suspension, and likely leading to back discomfort like on The Following I used to ride. I also agree with RC, size specific geo really would have gone a ways towards achieving what these guys are setting out to do.
  • - 1
 eminent.com

I thought about making some sort of badonkadonk joke as there is much junk in the trunk as it were but I am not going to make that joke.
  • + 1
 @koncretekahuna: No doubt. I hope more companies begin to experiment with it soon, as there are significant handling and comfort improvements.
  • + 2
 Fusion of 1999 Tomac 204 Magnum with 2015 Mondraker Summum carbon!
[img]https://cdn.bicyclebluebook.com/bikepedia/1999%20Tomac%20Magnum%20204.jpg[/img]

[img]http://www.mondraker.com.au/2018Bikes/BikePhotos/SummumCarbonProTeam.jpg[/img]
  • + 4
 Just saw their promo video on Vital. Man that's bad. If this bike climbs so well why are they shuttling up a road my 8 year old could charge up?
  • + 2
 Good luck to them... It's certainly a neat looking bike. It's a shame they had to discard 85 carbon prototypes (if I read right?) to get here though - that seems a tad wasteful given the state of our environment. I'm more drawn towards the brands like Starling that are working with steel, in order to avoid the sea fill.
  • + 4
 Good luck, gents! F*ck all these haters. They probably couldn't build a Lego kit.
  • + 1
 what??
maybe it's me, but it seems that it doesn't have chain growth, but even chain shrink, how does that pedal??
Also, the rear brake moves backwards under compression, so instead of brake-squat, it would extend suspenssion a lot when braking, steepening HA and shit...
Any thougths on that, anyone?
  • + 1
 oooh, I see now, I missed the mount for the rear brake, it's just the rear link what moves backwards Smile
  • + 1
 Looks clunky, expensive, no stealth dropper and these guys want to 'reinvent the wheel' and cut the LBS's of the world out that have been wrenching in the trenches on all bikes (big, small, trick, crappy) for decades? Not sold.

Make it sexy, dirt cheap, more capable than anything else ever and we can talk. Also, are there water bottle bosses or not?!?!
  • + 2
 yes, room for 1 water bottle
  • + 1
 "and generous reach"

463mm reach, in the 65cm size bike (which, giving them the benefit of the doubt is equivalent to a large) can hardly be described as 'generous'...

it's average at best for this type of bike, and conservative if you look in the context of the latest raft of longer travel AM/enduro bikes... The rest of the geo is equally disappointing, really.
  • + 2
 I cant help but feel that shock is going to get battered? Does that guard really protect it that much? I do like the look of the bike though. Looks pretty rad and its always cool to be different.
  • + 4
 there have been plenty of companies with exposed shock shaft design and currenty still a few with designs that expose the shock and all seem to deal with it just fine.
  • + 1
 @2bigwheels: just my paranoia of riding it crappy winter uk conditions I guess. ????????
  • + 1
 @chadxhollywood: yeah there's that. I mean no design is ever 100% perfect is it?

I will say I never ended up with mud and crud inside the little mechanism box and it gets pretty wet and goppy here in the PNW.

I have seen people actually put a heat shrink tube around the mechanism and cable area to get it sealed a bit better against the "elements"
  • + 1
 @chadxhollywood: hahah I totally replied to your comment thinking you were talking about the dropper posts.. haha.
  • + 1
 @2bigwheels: haha. Nope that dropper looks cool to me. Runs along the top tube easy enough.
  • + 3
 I for whatever reason really like the looks of this bike, suspension deaign and the small details. Looking forward to seeing a proper review of this one.
  • + 1
 Version 2.0 of the lower link should wrap around the swing arm, rather than sit inside it. This would allow for more substantial bearings, and a larger diameter axle to be engineered into it. Business model is essentially the same as a boutique bike shop, if they could only sell you one frame, and couldn’t provide mechanical support one it required service. Nevertheless a unique design, and progress of some sort.
  • + 1
 Lawwill patent for sure, also fond on Schwinn during the Homegrown era, on several different models, one of which was on the leading edge of the AM movement back in the early 2000's. These bikes rode really well with one flaw (except for the DH versions), they suffered from brake jack, which this design appears to work around with the floating mount. Otherwise, they we efficient, tracked well and provided excellent traction. Color me interested.
  • - 2
 I believe that lawill designs have a concentric pivot around the BB
  • + 1
 @kleinblake: Some do, some don't.
  • + 2
 I wonder if the patent has run its course at this point? Same-ish era as FSR, so maybe it's just out and available now? Anyhow, would be really interested to try this bike, and wasn't surprised to hear RC talk about the way the rear tracked and planted over uneven terrain on climbs, because when we used to ride our DH bikes on a lark once a month on the local XC trails (both to not take ourselves too seriously and get a good workout in!) i was always amazed at how well the Schwinn Straight 8 (Lawwill) I rode at the time would climb. It didn't matter how steep, bumpy, dusty, loose over hard, or soaked a climb was, the rear on that bike would stay planted and transfer traction like no other bike I've ever ridden. It didn't make any sense, and was really unexpected from a 44lb bike that was terrific on the downs and cornered as "on rails" as it could have before geometry #s, lengths, and bigger wheels came along. Out of all my bikes since, and all those of friends and at demos that i've test ridden, I've always searched for a bike that could offer that kind of traction on the climbs, but at a modern weight and #s, and while still descending like the lawwills of old. It's always been a mystery to me, but the sense memory is still so strong because it was that unique that reading RC's assessment I'm left wondering if maybe this is the one?
  • + 1
 Agree a friend had one of those Scwinns and it rode awesome. By the time I was buying a new bike they stopped making them, but I always remembered that thing eating up rough stuff and pedaling really well. The brake jack was similar to many of the single pivot designs back then.
  • + 2
 @catfish9797: I guess that tracking on climbs has much to do with how much AS is implemented in the design, rather than the design type.
DH rigs circa Straight 8 era were designed with a low AS/low pedal kickback, be it 4-bars, faux bars or others, which explain the good tracking abilities on climbs.
Difficult to check the main pivot location on the Eminent cycle, but it seems to be quite aligned with the 32t ring, so I thing it's around 100% at sag in 32/18, maybe a little less.
IMO, a good configuration is the combination low AS (around 70% at sag in 32/18 ), high LR with an air shock, shock and ratio progressivity preventing too much squat and keeping the suspension active while pedaling.
  • + 2
 @kleinblake: I think that was found on the original Fisher RS1 and maybe the Rotek's (sp?).
On the Yeti's and Schwinn's the low pivot was behind the BB.
  • + 1
 @kleinblake: Only the very first prototypes had the pivot around the BB. There is a lot of history behind this design. Mert even put it on a moto gp bike at the time and it was transferring to much power to the ground and they couldn't keep the front down and had to scrap the project.
  • + 1
 I really liked the look of that bike when I saw it but the more I read the more I realized that they got this one a bit wrong in more than one place. The rear shock would get destroyed where I live because of the sheer amount of smaller sharp stones here, the reach and top tube measurements are out of synch with the seat tube lengths and I suspect that is to do with the way that the frame forms around the rear shock meaning I couldn't fit a dropper that would actually clear the saddle enough for me. Those things make it a deal breaker sadly.
  • + 1
 So how big is that box they ship it in and what does it cost to ship it like that? Wondering how competitive the price is to ship it cross country that way. Doing via checked luggage is a huge pain.
  • + 1
 There was a banner at this years Interbike with a picture of Doug Bradbury (Manitou founder) sitting astride a prototype that looks a lot like this, but no mention in the article...
  • + 5
 Haters gonna haste
  • + 2
 Pretty interesting take to design, I'd be interested in how it handles in courses like the EWS had this past year. It does look super burly though.
  • + 1
 ''The brake caliper "floats" between the rear axle and a ball-joint attached to the swingarm''

A ball joint wouldn't allow that motion, would it? Not a cam of sorts going on perhaps?
  • + 4
 can we get #lookslikeamarin trending up in here?
  • + 1
 Need a full review to assess ride but it certainly isn't hard to look at! Integrated floating brake is pretty trick too. Will be keeping an eye out for more on this one!
  • + 3
 Is that the new Schwinn Homegrown?
  • + 3
 Must be a future bike angle in mm Smile
But looks really nice.
  • + 1
 So... some middle aged “shredders” designed a bike for other middle aged guys based on their slightly skewed idea of what a bike should be.
Well...
It worked for Knolly.
  • + 1
 I think it looks rad!! I wish you and your company nothing but success. Huge props for stepping out and making your dreams come true!!
  • + 1
 The lines remind me of Evil Imperial a bit. glad to see floating brake. I think this is the most under-rated feature. Its what I miss most about all of my current bikes.
  • + 2
 Im not in the market, but here are the things I like.

San Diego
Photos from TEDs
the Cunningham/Preston review dream team
  • + 3
 How about that reuseable box become industry standard?
  • + 1
 Always love the upper tube and chainstays aligned designs. Nice looking. But the lower mount of the shock may not be very ideal.
  • + 3
 Looks like a Mondraker had a bastard love-child with a Schwinn 4-Banger...
  • + 2
 It'll be a pleasure to find rear brake small parts for that frame in a few years.
  • + 2
 probably been said...but Schwinn was the majority user of the Lawwill Link.
  • + 3
 I'd consider the aluminum test mule!
  • + 1
 I hope if they will or do sell a mud guard for the shock for those of us that live in the rain and mud for 9 months of the year.
  • + 0
 It's neat, could use a little more modernization to be the ultimate bike. Internal dropper routing could be done through one of the side pieces next to the shock. Steeper sta, obviously.
  • + 3
 Looks like a Mondraker Session
  • + 1
 Thanks for bringing back Lawwill suspension. It failed in 1997, so why will it succeed now?
  • + 1
 Looks really cool. I like it!!! Reminds me of the Tomac Magnum 204 from many years ago!
  • + 2
 The lines on the bike are beautiful... Absolutely stunning.
  • + 2
 External seatpost? Holy shit that’s a f*ck up.
  • + 1
 So maybe it rides ok, but slack and bent seat tube, press fit BB, and complicated brake mounting are deal breakers for me.
  • + 3
 Looks like Slim Shady.
  • + 2
 It doesn't say specialized or trek or yt, better start hating.
  • + 2
 Looks almost Mondrakerish IMHO.
  • + 1
 Let's not be quick to judgement.... my first pun and there is no pun thread here.... dammit!
  • - 1
 I'm sorry, but the similarities are too much to ignore.

www.eminence.com - manufacturer of high end guitar speakers.

Cool bike, but an original name/logo would have been nice.
  • + 2
 Looks like a sessionable bike
  • + 1
 Good design? If it doesn't crack! That's my main concern, a carbon frame that doesn't crack is what everyone wants!
  • + 2
 Not sure I dig the 90's inspired chunky look but that packaging is fire
  • + 1
 I like it...that's all that counts to me. I like the new old design with a floating brake, which it needs badly. I buy it...
  • + 1
 Congratulations for the new bike. Looks beautiful. But it is still not in my pocket league, unfortunately.
  • + 1
 what every happened to that bike that looked like a praying mantis , was meant to be amazing,not seen much about them since
  • + 2
 Lost me at press-fit type bottom bracket.
  • + 1
 looks cool , under full compresion looks like it gets abit of pedal kick back?? could make it a good trail pumping bike
  • + 1
 Looks interesting, but can I fit my 175mm dropper post??????????? Doubtful.
  • + 2
 On today’s episode of “Will it Creak”...
  • + 1
 Skipped reading it. Don't care. Not cheaper & better. Just more....er.
  • + 2
 Can I just buy the box?
  • + 1
 That shipping box is a thing of beauty
  • + 1
 that floating rear calliper is a really good idea
  • + 1
 Congratulations on your new adventure, Eminent!
  • + 1
 Nice looking bike! Best of luck to Eminent.
  • + 1
 Great looking Bike!! Good Luck with the Brand!
  • - 3
 Looks interesting, but two things bother me. External droppers are pretty much a thing of the past...designing a brand new bike that runs external seems strange. Overall athletics of the rear end also feel dated to me. Almost like someone is trying to re-imagine an old Yeti and not going far enough into the future. Bottom line seems like a bike from 3-4 years ago, not something that just got released....
  • + 0
 Looks like a session...................no seriously, it looks like a session...
  • - 1
 27.5 is yesterday news, should have been a 29er. If you are going to go up against the big boy you better have something special, I see nothig here.
  • + 1
 Crazy looking suspension design! @theminsta
  • + 2
 Yeti DH9 anyone?
  • + 1
 wot is that dropper routing
  • + 1
 It looks a bit like a Thomson....?
  • + 2
 @dandriller: its a fox transit
  • + 1
 But will they have a patent issue with the lawell design?!
  • + 4
 I haven't checked, but any patent on 90's technology is probably expired.
  • + 4
 Mert let the patent expire a while back due to lack of interest.
  • + 3
 @Hyakian: always a.great sign...
I hear all the URT related patents have expired too.
  • + 2
 I dig that box.
  • + 2
 I liked it too. Very nice packaging.
  • + 1
 Mondraker sends regards, and IP infringement suit.
  • + 1
 Looks like a real Sedona shredder
  • + 1
 Looks like a poorly executed rotec...
  • + 1
 ZERODE
  • + 1
 Looks Boss
  • + 0
 Stupid Name! Eminent? Haste? Wow that sounds dumb!
  • + 1
 Who else read Eminem?
  • + 1
 Nice try....
  • + 1
 Looks like a Rotec.
  • + 1
 I wish them luck.
  • - 3
 the real slimt shady, please stand up!
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2017. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv56 0.129734
Mobile Version of Website