Morewood Kalula Review

Dec 10, 2010
by Mike Levy  
The 7" travel Morewood Kalula is based on the much heralded Makulu race bike, even sporting the same low leverage linkage design, but is much more of a free spirit than its bigger brother could ever hope to be.

We've spent months in B.C.'s best bike parks getting to know the Kalula's fun loving personality and inside you can read up on our impressions.

Morewood Kalula


Bikes in the Kalula's category can be hard to fully understand - they're not downhill bikes, certainly not all-mountain bikes, and the term
Bikes in the Kalula's category can be hard to fully understand - they're not downhill bikes, certainly not all-mountain bikes, and the term "freeride" seems like a silly way to describe having fun in the bush on your bicycle. The media, meaning myself, is as guilty as anyone for perpetuating the pigeonholing of bikes that these terms accomplish. Thankfully, there are many companies like Morewood who are more concerned about how fun a bike is, as opposed to where it fits in. Sporting somewhat ambiguous geometry, 7" of rear wheel travel, and a downhill friendly 83 mm bottom bracket and full sized 12 x 150 mm rear axle spacing, the Kalula is capable of being different bikes for different people. One thing about the Kalula that is clear as day is that it certainly looks like it would be a blast to ride. Morewood's much praised Makulu downhill bike is recognized as being at the pointy end of the field when talking performance race bikes, being able to cover ground quickly and offer the rider incredible grip, but the question is if its little brother shown here can hang onto those traits, while at the same time being more fun on less demanding terrain? A quick scan of the geometry for both tells me that, on paper at least, the two bikes share some numbers, aside from a head angle that differs by a personality altering 1.5 degrees, even if they both shared the same fork, but it isn't quite that simple. Static ground clearance is the same, with the BB height of both sitting at 22 mm above the axle line, but the Kalula will sit higher, given that it will run less sag. Interestingly, both share the same 438 mm long chainstays. Things are drastically different when it comes to measurements taken at the front of the bike. Not only is a reach a full 28 mm shorter on the Kalula, the head angle is also 1.5 degrees steeper. Those two facts add up to a bike that sports a much shorter front-to-center distance than the Makulu, and therefore a shorter wheelbase as well. After rereading that paragraph a few times you're probably wondering what it all means on the trail... Keep reading to find out.
<br><span style='font-size:19px'>Morewood Kalula details:</span> <br><br>- 178mm of rear wheel travel<br>- Low leverage 2.3:1 linkage with Enduro Max bearings<br>- 30.9mm seat post diameter<br>- 83mm bottom bracket<br>- ISCG 05 chainguide tabs<br>- Tapered head tube<br>- 150x12mm rear axle spacing<br>- Postmount 160mm rear brake mounting<br>- Small, medium and large frame sizes<br>- Frame weight: 10 lbs 11 oz (including shock and axle)<br>- Complete build weight: 38 lbs 5 oz (custom build)<br> - MSRP $2495.00 USD (frame only)<br><br><br>Not coincidentally, the Kalula looks remarkably similar to the longer legged Makulu, and in fact uses the same low leverage rear suspension design to control its 7

Morewood Kalula details:

- 178mm of rear wheel travel
- Low leverage 2.3:1 linkage with Enduro Max bearings
- 30.9mm seat post diameter
- 83mm bottom bracket
- ISCG 05 chainguide tabs
- Tapered head tube
- 150x12mm rear axle spacing
- Postmount 160mm rear brake mounting
- Small, medium and large frame sizes
- Frame weight: 10 lbs 11 oz (including shock and axle)
- Complete build weight: 38 lbs 5 oz (custom build)
- MSRP $2495.00 USD (frame only)


Not coincidentally, the Kalula looks remarkably similar to the longer legged Makulu, and in fact uses the same low leverage rear suspension design to control its 7" or travel. The single pivot design rotates around a single large bearing on each side Morewood's SPI 2 pivot assembly that forgoes using a traditional pivot axle, instead incorporating it directly into the pivot caps. The catalog says that it's "simpler, stronger and lighter" than the previous version of the SPI system, which is true as there are less parts and less weight when you compare SPI 2 to the older version. The shock rate is manipulated via two short links to get the same low leverage 2.3:1 rate as the Makulu, but it uses a shorter 3" stroke shock (compared to the Makulu's 3.5" stroke monster) to achieve 7" of travel. All of the pivots are held together with flush fitting steel hardware and aluminum caps help keep mother nature out. Our test bike uses Fox's top of the line DHX RC4 shock that features all the usual dials to adjust both low and high speed compression, rebound, and bottom out, but depending on where you're located you may also be able to spec the bike with a Cane Creek Double Barrel or BOS Stoy damper.
While there is plenty of whizzy suspension stuff to talk about, there is more to the Kalula than its rear end, including the burly tapered headtube up front that will come in handy if you choose to spec a long travel single crown fork like the Kashima equipped Van 180 FIT RC2 Fox 36 used on our test bike. The hydroformed top tube slopes aggressively down towards a short interrupted seat tube - there isn't a ton of room to adjust saddle height, but the majority of riders who are considering the Kalula won't be worrying about that fact. While it isn't a full-on downhill race bike, the Kalula does sport an 83 mm bottom bracket shell, ISCG05 chain guide tabs, and 12 x 150 mm axle spacing, meaning it accepts full sized downhilll parts. The rear brake caliper attaches via a 160 mm post mount. Cables are routed cleanly down the top of the down tube, and the frame comes with some protective tubing for the derailleur housing as it makes its way down the swingarm.
While there is plenty of whizzy suspension stuff to talk about, there is more to the Kalula than its rear end, including the burly tapered headtube up front that will come in handy if you choose to spec a long travel single crown fork like the Kashima equipped Van 180 FIT RC2 Fox 36 used on our test bike. The hydroformed top tube slopes aggressively down towards a short interrupted seat tube - there isn't a ton of room to adjust saddle height, but the majority of riders who are considering the Kalula won't be worrying about that fact. While it isn't a full-on downhill race bike, the Kalula does sport an 83 mm bottom bracket shell, ISCG05 chain guide tabs, and 12 x 150 mm axle spacing, meaning it accepts full sized downhilll parts. The rear brake caliper attaches via a 160 mm post mount. Cables are routed cleanly down the top of the down tube, and the frame comes with some protective tubing for the derailleur housing as it makes its way down the swingarm.
It's a rare bird that I feel comfortable on straight away, but the South African bike felt like I was home right off the bat. The comfy Renthal bar, with its sweep that seemed to be spot on, surely played a part, but the Kalula's slightly short cockpit (approx. 28mm shorter than a Makulu of the same size) fits the bike's intentions spot on. Sure, it didn't feel ideal anytime the trail required some seated pedaling, but that isn't the bike's intention, is it? Stand up, attack the terrain, and the short reach will feel right on the money. When the time does come to put down the power you're efforts will be rewarded with relatively crisp acceleration, even with the RC4's low speed compression dial turned as counter clockwise as it would go. This trait, along with its firmer travel than the Makulu, went a long way to giving the bike an energetic attitude, much more so than its ground hugging bigger brother. That's the obvious bit, the less obvious fact is how it still manages to deal with serious terrain, but we'll get to that later. Despite what many riders believe, it takes some heavy terrain under most people to truly be faster on a downhill race bike, and this is why the Kalula makes so much sense. The 7
It's a rare bird that I feel comfortable on straight away, but the South African bike felt like I was home right off the bat. The comfy Renthal bar, with its sweep that seemed to be spot on, surely played a part, but the Kalula's slightly short cockpit (approx. 28mm shorter than a Makulu of the same size) fits the bike's intentions spot on. Sure, it didn't feel ideal anytime the trail required some seated pedaling, but that isn't the bike's intention, is it? Stand up, attack the terrain, and the short reach will feel right on the money. When the time does come to put down the power you're efforts will be rewarded with relatively crisp acceleration, even with the RC4's low speed compression dial turned as counter clockwise as it would go. This trait, along with its firmer travel than the Makulu, went a long way to giving the bike an energetic attitude, much more so than its ground hugging bigger brother. That's the obvious bit, the less obvious fact is how it still manages to deal with serious terrain, but we'll get to that later. Despite what many riders believe, it takes some heavy terrain under most people to truly be faster on a downhill race bike, and this is why the Kalula makes so much sense. The 7" travel machine was infinitely more manageable when weaving through tight trails or on terrain that demanded slower speeds and pinpoint riding. In this regard the Kalula was a blast to ride, mainly because the throttle doesn't need to be pinned open to have fun - the bike put a smile on my face even when I was on cruise control. Due to the shorter front end and steeper steering angle I didn't feel the need to have more weight over the front end of the bike when attacking corners. The result of a more relaxed attitude aboard the Kulala is the ability to carry speed through tight bends very well, although it doesn't quite sport the sure footedness of a longer bike in faster or loose turns, and this is where the blue bike will give up ground compared to a true downhill bike.
The Kalula's rear suspension was very impressive, although I will admit that I was expecting that after having a few fleeting runs on the Makulu. Just like its bigger brother, the linkage gives the rear end an incredibly low leverage ratio. What does this do, you ask? Well, besides requiring an equally incredibly soft shock spring that can be a hassle for lighter riders to track down, it also can make for more sensitive suspension action and added consistency due to lower operating temperatures. While the majority of riders aren't going to be pushing the bike hard enough to take advantage of the the last point, there is no doubting that it increases the dampers reliability in the long term. True to form, the back of the bike dealt especially well with anything that was handled by the first part of the shock's stroke. Probably the biggest surprise came when on the brakes, in that the rear end stayed very active, despite the common shit talk of single pivot designs firming up when on the binders. The blue bike spent quite a bit of time in lift assisted bike parks, places that are known for their braking bumps and beat terrain, but the bike felt more planted and stable when crossing these sections than many linkage designs that go on about being fully active no matter what. The result was more traction than I was expecting in those situations, and while I am not going to proclaim to you that I was going noticeably faster, I will state that I was more confident than on some other bikes. At the opposite end of the spectrum the Fox damper did require a bit if fiddling in order to get enough ramp at the end of the Kalula's travel. The RC4 may come as stock on many bikes and not have the flash of some other more expensive options, but its adjustments were effective on the Kalula and the shock performed extremely well on its design. With the piggy back's volume closed down and a few extra clicks of high speed damping, the bike dealt with hard hits quite well, but I'd like to see a bit more progression from the linkage - especially considering that the bike is intended for park use or as a mini DH rig. All this suspension technology is always a balancing act, but having a shock with potent adjustments is a godsend. One thing that the Kalula did quite well was strike a proper balance between keeping the tires on the dirt for ridiculous traction and at the same time manage to be much more poppy, energetic, and all around fun than other bikes sporting only a single inch more rear wheel travel. That to me is what really sets the Kalula apart from other pint sized DH bikes - the traction between the front and rear tires felt to be on the same level as a true race bike, but at the same time the bike wanted to have fun and enjoy the terrain much more than that same race bike would. Geometry plays the biggest part in deciding a bike's character and everyone has their own opinion on what numbers make for a  perfect bike, but it would be interesting to see how the Kalula's personality would change if it was sporting a slacker and lower stance.
The Kalula's rear suspension was very impressive, although I will admit that I was expecting that after having a few fleeting runs on the Makulu. Just like its bigger brother, the linkage gives the rear end an incredibly low leverage ratio. What does this do, you ask? Well, besides requiring an equally incredibly soft shock spring that can be a hassle for lighter riders to track down, it also can make for more sensitive suspension action and added consistency due to lower operating temperatures. While the majority of riders aren't going to be pushing the bike hard enough to take advantage of the the last point, there is no doubting that it increases the dampers reliability in the long term. True to form, the back of the bike dealt especially well with anything that was handled by the first part of the shock's stroke. Probably the biggest surprise came when on the brakes, in that the rear end stayed very active, despite the common shit talk of single pivot designs firming up when on the binders. The blue bike spent quite a bit of time in lift assisted bike parks, places that are known for their braking bumps and beat terrain, but the bike felt more planted and stable when crossing these sections than many linkage designs that go on about being fully active no matter what. The result was more traction than I was expecting in those situations, and while I am not going to proclaim to you that I was going noticeably faster, I will state that I was more confident than on some other bikes. At the opposite end of the spectrum the Fox damper did require a bit if fiddling in order to get enough ramp at the end of the Kalula's travel. The RC4 may come as stock on many bikes and not have the flash of some other more expensive options, but its adjustments were effective on the Kalula and the shock performed extremely well on its design. With the piggy back's volume closed down and a few extra clicks of high speed damping, the bike dealt with hard hits quite well, but I'd like to see a bit more progression from the linkage - especially considering that the bike is intended for park use or as a mini DH rig. All this suspension technology is always a balancing act, but having a shock with potent adjustments is a godsend. One thing that the Kalula did quite well was strike a proper balance between keeping the tires on the dirt for ridiculous traction and at the same time manage to be much more poppy, energetic, and all around fun than other bikes sporting only a single inch more rear wheel travel. That to me is what really sets the Kalula apart from other pint sized DH bikes - the traction between the front and rear tires felt to be on the same level as a true race bike, but at the same time the bike wanted to have fun and enjoy the terrain much more than that same race bike would. Geometry plays the biggest part in deciding a bike's character and everyone has their own opinion on what numbers make for a perfect bike, but it would be interesting to see how the Kalula's personality would change if it was sporting a slacker and lower stance.
How about those parts? The spec that you see on our test bike is completely custom, but the standout selection is surely Fox's 180 mm VAN RC2 36 fork. There is no two ways about it, this thing is seriously bad ass and I am confident in saying that the damping and control it has on tap rivals other companies top end downhill forks. While I am positive that a fork can be as smooth out of the box sans the eye catching Kashima coating on its stanchions, the Fox fork did slide through its travel implausibly smoothly. The only recommendation I would have would be to swap out the stock medium coil spring for the next weight up if you plan on confronting any proper terrain or if you are not in the welterweight class. As expected, the Avid Elixir brakes and SRAM drivetrain performed flawlessly, there really isn't too much to say there except that they certainly have their mid and high end components dialed. Also worth mentioning is the MRP G2 guide that we fitted - quiet, trouble free, and didn't ever pack with mud and goo. There were a few components that we didn't seem to get on too well with though, including the Easton Havoc DH wheels, which held their tension just fine, but who's rear axle constantly wanted to either be too tight or too loose. The wheel's axle mysteriously deciding to tighten down meant that its overall length becomes ever so slightly shorter, enough though that the Makulu's axle itself would no longer stay tight. While all the blame does fall squarely onto the rear wheel's hub and not the bike's axle (the Makulu's axle never backed out), I would still like to see a pinch bolt to hold it in place. I also never really got on well with the WTB DIssent tires. I'm sure that they work well in other conditions, but I just never managed to find those conditions. I found myself much more comfortable on the bike after installing a set of 2.5
How about those parts? The spec that you see on our test bike is completely custom, but the standout selection is surely Fox's 180 mm VAN RC2 36 fork. There is no two ways about it, this thing is seriously bad ass and I am confident in saying that the damping and control it has on tap rivals other companies top end downhill forks. While I am positive that a fork can be as smooth out of the box sans the eye catching Kashima coating on its stanchions, the Fox fork did slide through its travel implausibly smoothly. The only recommendation I would have would be to swap out the stock medium coil spring for the next weight up if you plan on confronting any proper terrain or if you are not in the welterweight class. As expected, the Avid Elixir brakes and SRAM drivetrain performed flawlessly, there really isn't too much to say there except that they certainly have their mid and high end components dialed. Also worth mentioning is the MRP G2 guide that we fitted - quiet, trouble free, and didn't ever pack with mud and goo. There were a few components that we didn't seem to get on too well with though, including the Easton Havoc DH wheels, which held their tension just fine, but who's rear axle constantly wanted to either be too tight or too loose. The wheel's axle mysteriously deciding to tighten down meant that its overall length becomes ever so slightly shorter, enough though that the Makulu's axle itself would no longer stay tight. While all the blame does fall squarely onto the rear wheel's hub and not the bike's axle (the Makulu's axle never backed out), I would still like to see a pinch bolt to hold it in place. I also never really got on well with the WTB DIssent tires. I'm sure that they work well in other conditions, but I just never managed to find those conditions. I found myself much more comfortable on the bike after installing a set of 2.5" Kenda Excavators, a favorite tire around the office. Prospective owners of the Kalula should keep in mind that the frame does require an uncommon headset size that we struggled to track down.


Specifications
Release Date 2010
Price $2495
Travel 7"
Rear Shock Fox DHX RC4
Fork Fox 180 mm VAN RC2 36 fork
Headset FSA
Cassette SRAM PGII 960 9spd 11-32T
Crankarms Truvativ Holzfeller
Chainguide MRP G2 SL
Bottom Bracket TruVativ
Pedals Syncros Meathook
Chain SRAM
Rear Derailleur SRAM XO
Front Derailleur n/a
Shifter Pods SRAM XO
Handlebar Renthal Fatbar
Stem Easton Havoc
Grips ODI Ruffian
Brakes Avid Elixir CR
Wheelset DT EX1750
Hubs DT
Spokes DT Swiss double butted bladed
Rim DT 5.1
Tires Kenda Excavator
Seat Fi'zi:k Tundra
Seatpost Amoeba


After getting to know the Kalula I cringe to use the word
After getting to know the Kalula I cringe to use the word "freeride" to describe the bike's package. Yes, it's shorter and has less travel than a full sized race bike, and sports steeper angles as well, but using the F-word to explain what the bike is all about is selling it a bit short as there are too many negative connotations with that term. It isn't an awkward and unwieldy monster like many other 7" travel options, but something that is much more at home playing in the forest at speed, laughing at the bigger bikes that are not being ridden to their full potential, and certainly having more fun all at the same time as well. There are certainly mountains and riders that deserve a slacker and more forgiving bikes, but the truth is that most of us would be far better off on the Kalula than our current steeds.


Looking for more information? Visit the Morewood website.


The Kalula is a 7" travel bike that combines the grip of a bigger machine and the fun loving nature of a park bike, with the result being one hell of a fun bike. Do you have a Kalula in your stable and agree with my impressions or do you have more to add? Put those thoughts down below!


103 Comments

  • + 104
 Dear Santa...
  • + 39
 Wait a minute, is that 2500 for the whole bike? Or frame only? *please god let it be whole bike*
  • + 3
 only the frame
  • + 33
 awwwww guttered
  • + 29
 I almost freaked out when I saw the price and thought it was for the whole bike as well. I knew it couldn't be right....but man was I praying it was.
  • + 7
 weird, because it gives the price with all the specs listed below
  • + 4
 if that is the real price i think i've just changed my dream bike to this. tup
  • - 22
flag derpdownthehill (Dec 10, 2010 at 6:18) (Below Threshold)
 that bike looks sweet with the purple paint job.
  • + 18
 it's blue.
  • + 3
 just got mine yesterday, omg paint is cool, it almost changes colors in different kinda of lights...
  • + 1
 lucky, is it amazing?
  • + 13
 I get the fail of the year award for my last comment...
  • + 0
 does it need a special key to unlock the rear axle?
  • + 1
 no it doesn't need anything special for the real axle. Pretty simple system, holds the hanger, and axle tightly
  • + 1
 the wings on the side remind me of oregon's football jerseys... in other news, ABSOLUTELY SICK BIKE!
  • + 1
 Anyone want to clarify if thats the price for frame or whole bike? Cause thats a REALLY good deal for whole bike...
  • + 1
 Frame only price. It will be clearer in future reviews, but it also states it in the point form details as well.
  • + 5
 I cant read the white writing on the black, it hurts my eyes. sorry Razz
  • + 1
 sweet
  • + 6
 I know it's been mentioned before, but this whole white text on black background makes my eyes go wonky after about a minute of reading. I made it through the first paragraph and then I couldn't even see the pictures properly. Any way we can switch back to black text on white?
  • + 1
 Copy and paste into a word doc Smile
  • + 1
 hilight the text with your mouse - then it's dark on white background
  • + 1
 On a mac, it becomes white text on light blue background. So, not exactly readable. Just change the CSS since that's what everyone wants anyway.
  • + 2
 On a Mac you can hit control + option + command + 8 and itll turn the screen negative so its black letters with white background.
  • + 10
 the best thing to come out of South africa since Greg Minaar!
  • + 1
 and pierre spies. haha
  • + 2
 I own this bike and I have it built with a elka in the rear and boxxer WC up front. I would say that this review is bang on to how the bike rides. My intension is to race this bike. If you live in the little mountains like I do here in the eastcoast the bike is very capable of being a dh race bike. One thing that the reviewer did not mention is how stiff the bike is. The rear end is crazy solid. I was blown away by how rigid the frame is. Overall the bike is a blast to ride.Over the winter I'm putting a angle set in the frame to slack it out a degree. I did find the 65.5 to be a bit steep for dh. My last Morewood was around 64. If you live in canada contact the great guys at lamacycles.com to get more info on the kalula
  • + 2
 I was expecting a bit more of a definitive "yes" or "no" on the Kalula, Although it looks incredible, and the review praises its performance, I wanted to know how it handled the more technical terrain of say the north shore as well as parks.
  • + 2
 I dont think its exactly fair to expect a "yes" or "no" in a review. I think this is a great write up on this bike that does a good job of telling you what its strong suits are. It gives you a good idea of how it rides and talks about the quality and spec of the frame. It also tries to convey the intended purpose although as the reviewer points out- this bike can be different things to different people depending on how its built up and how its ridden. I do think the review gave a enough info to conclude that this bike would gobble up technical terrain quite well, while still being lively enough for park riding. I really like this bike and bikes like them, my personal rig is set up in a similar manner for similar needs. I think these types of bikes are perfect for alot of riders who may be in a situation where having both an expensive DH rig and expensive all-mountain bike just isnt feasable.
  • + 12
 One more thing.................can we do something about this white on black text. Im going to need glasses soon if I keep reading these things.
  • + 1
 Ajanthon, What do you want to know exactly? I've spent a lot of time on this bike and I have to say that it suited me and my riding style better than most DH specific bikes I've ridden over the years. I have seen others with dual crowns on their Kalula as they wanted a more DH set up, I ran what you see here - 180 Fox up front made the bike more agile in the tighter trails. Lots of resort time on the bike, not a lot of shuttles.
  • + 2
 I wasn't knocking the review at all, I thought it was quite thorough. However, I guess I was just hoping to get more feedback on how the bike handled slower tight turns, berms, jumps and whether yes it is good in these conditions or no it's not.
  • + 1
 Ajanthon - sorry if you thought I was being harsh, really I simply want to know your personal questions as I may be able to help.

The single crown gave the bike the ability to ride tighter corners with more ease than a dual crown typically can. I found it nice to be able to pick my way around on trails that I may have to stop or do wheel hops on in order to get through. Berms - think DH bike stability. Jumps - not the best jumper, but it has less squat/sag than a full blown DH rig, making it a more playful ride that requires a bit more body english, but the result is a livelier ride. Does that help a bit. It is tough as we all ride in different areas, so one must look at the areas ridden too. In my case, Sun Peaks, Silver Star and Whistler.
  • + 1
 Cheers for the supplementary comments, that's definitely what I was curious to know. I'm currently riding an Intense SS and was just wondering how the Kalula would possibly compare. I ride some parks, but mainly the shore and the coast.
  • + 5
 Is 7 inches of Morewood enough to satisfy the ladies?
  • + 3
 I'm sure the bike's awesome....I didn't read the review, can't imagine how anyone can get through so much poorly formatted text. Paragraphs people! Make your work readable!
  • + 3
 I'd soooo love to see a face-off review between all these 7" dh bikes, like the Transition TR250, Kalula and Foes RS7 etc - would be the bomb! such sweet bikes!
  • + 1
 ditto: would love to see the solid mission 7 in there too, last season a german MTB did a review of all the 180mm bikes, and it got a 9/10, the demo did pretty well too!
  • + 1
 damn, i was only searching the web last night thinking why the hell has nobody reviewed this bike. Seems like exactly what I am looking for, but for me a big leap to buy something that I can't get a test ride on, after reading this I am tempted though - anyone tried this and an orange alpine 160?
  • + 2
 Having ridden this bike, but not the Alpine 160, I can say that I do not believe that they are even the same genre of bike. The Alpine is much more suited to a day in the saddle, while the Kalula is aimed at the DH specific crowd.
  • + 1
 dammm any one else have the problem of getting a bike you think is perfect using it for one session and then finding something new! i love my sx trail, but since buying it have had a play on this bike and love the look of the new tr 250! i think the sx may have to be changed for one of these two! great review but please sort out the balck and white text, looks cool but hard to read!
  • + 1
 I was just thinking my SX trail was alot like this. I am a big fan of a "mini" downhill bike that does Freeride too. After all, in my opinion Free ride means being able to do whatever you want while pointed down the trail.
This bike looks great, and if you are building a frame up "mini" downhill, I think this should be on your list.

How is this company with Warranty.
  • + 1
 Here's a question for you all to ponder: I am by no means an amazing rider, but I own an amazing bike (a Makulu)... what would give me a better riding experience? A full-on DH rig like the Makulu, or a more "playful" bike like the Kalula? Some would say that I don't ride my bike to its full potential, and they would be absolutely correct. BUT, does having a bigger, more "forgiving" bike like the Makulu help give me the advantage I need? Or would a more playful bike with less travel be easier to handle for someone like me? I have always thought that because I'm not the best rider in the world, I'll take any technological advantage I can get. Right now, for me, I feel like having a plush, slack and stable bike gives me the most confidence, but maybe I should be open to dropping the travel a bit?
  • + 1
 That's personal preference. You will not have as much "forgiveness" with a shorter travel bike, and therefore may get bucked off your line easier. If you're not good at picking lines, I'd start there. Stop and ponder different lines at zones that give you fits. Try them. Try faster and slower speeds. Many times people TRY to ride too hard and end up eating a lot of shit. Slow down, pump the terrain, and get your line reading/selection/execution dialed. You should learn to use your body position to play into the bikes strengths. Don't ride off the back of the bike the whole time. Get forward, keep the eyes ahead and RIP IT!! Hope that helps!!
  • + 3
 Finaly, the Tech Tuesday bike revealed! Looks great, a proper bike to obliterate any BrakeBump mountain! When are we proclaiming the NUschool-DH genre?
  • + 1
 That's a sick bike and an insightful review Mr. Levy. I noticed a number of typos and grammar issues though bro...not that your audience particularly cares.
  • + 1
 Why does it seem weird calling bikes 'freeride' bikes? There bikes that you are FREE to RIDE anything with, not just a single discipline like a downhill or XC :/
  • + 3
 Is it wrong to own a Makulu, but want a Kalula as well? :p
  • + 1
 im thinking the same thing... just finished my makulu build and buddy just got his kalula shipped to my place. might steal it!
  • + 2
 sup3rc0w it is pure greed, and that I heard once somewhere, is a capital sin, although ...in this case, I guess I would gladly be a terrible sinner
  • + 1
 Think my wife might cut my testicles off though Frown
  • + 1
 thats an awsome bike but it may have been a good idea to put a little more time to wash it. :s but its absolutely incredible, i'll check it out at my local dealer for sure
  • + 1
 Want.

but I checked the Canadian Dealer price... $3600 for frame set only.
  • + 1
 It's a steal compared to the $4000 Makulu! Big Grin
  • + 1
 is the price it said on PB for the frame or the whole bike?
  • + 1
 Frame
  • + 1
 i was gonna say haha cause it listen the price then all the components
  • + 1
 They have some proper trail in Canada. My granddad was Canadian. *Wonders if they'll let me in*
  • + 1
 quite possibly under that pretense actually!
  • + 1
 That bike looks pretty darn sweet. Would it be good for big mountain style jumps?
  • + 2
 Probably, most of the morewoods I've ridden are. The DH race one feels super long and low though, so this one should be better for it. Try Kyle's at the next race...although his probably the wrong size for you haha, he's 5'2 XD
  • + 2
 The best bike ever!!!!!! I love my Kalula!!!
  • + 1
 you can tell they had the word fun in mind the entire time they were building this pup
  • + 1
 i love this bike!
i tested past summer and at first lap my expression was:
yes man! this bike is incredible!
  • + 1
 Great review - Looks like a fun bike!
  • + 1
 I swear! I admit that I am not a phenomenon as a biker, but the first feeling was very clear. bike well balanced, safe, drivable and fun! the first jump I was three feet higher than my bike! and with perfect control of the vehicle! unfortunately too expensive for my pockets!
  • + 0
 2500 FOR THAT SPEC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So going to buy one or is that just frame?
Or only just seen the post a few above
  • + 3
 MSRP $2495.00 USD (frame only)
  • + 1
 sadly just the frame, looks and sounds soo perfect though
  • + 1
 Gorgeous! Love single pivot mini-dh bikes. Orange apline, commencal mini and this, perfect!
  • + 0
 a mommencal mini dh isnt sigle pivot its got the same pivots a the supreme dh
  • + 1
 The commencal and morewood are linkage driven single pivots bro
  • + 0
 i have a commencal mini dh and i no for a fact that it aint single pivot but if the morewood is my bad
  • + 4
 I don't have a commencal mini DH and i know for a fact that it IS a single pivot. The rear shock is activated through use of linkages (hence the multitude of pivots on the bike) but the rear swingarm will still move around a single point. It is different to virtual pivot bikes, which low and behold, have a "virtual" pivot that changes as the bike moves through its travel. Just because it doesn't look like a standard single pivot (such as an orange 224) doesn't mean it isnt one!
  • + 1
 ^^ nuff said
  • + 1
 Check out a pic of my kalula.

www.pinkbike.com/photo/5743368
  • + 1
 excellent build
  • + 1
 again, the white text on black background is PAINFULL!!!!!
  • + 1
 this is without a doubt my next bike... or the transition tr250...
  • + 1
 I sense some doubt then... Wink
  • + 1
 How did the EX1750 wheeslet hold up?
  • + 1
 nice bike but not sure if i would get it over tr250 or trek sratch
  • + 0
 How would you say this bike compares to a Demo 7 for example? More nimble/flickable?
  • + 1
 god this bike look awesome
  • + 2
 I LOVE MY KALULA.
  • + 1
 YEAH ! I love my kalula, too!
  • + 1
 I wish I had the money to love it too =P - where do you guys ride in germany, somewhere in Bayern?
  • + 1
 i want this bike soo bad !
  • + 1
 "Having fun in the bush" Yes I do. I actually have a blast in the bush lol
  • + 1
 Thats hot man, Hot!!
  • + 1
 sick as!
  • + 1
 Looks totally sick!
  • + 1
 Thats a fantastic price!
  • - 2
 Super nice bike but I don't know why Morewood still uses such terrible headangles
  • + 3
 What's wrong with 65.5? The Intense Socom has a 66.5 angle and that's a race bike. Plus this has a tapered headtube so you can install an angle-set if you absolutely have to.
  • + 8
 The bike is also supposed to run at 40% sag , which slackens the H/A a lot in actual riding conditions Smile
  • - 1
 Shred-nz-media, you cant run an angle adjustable headset in a tapered set-up, only in full 1.5inch they will fit..
  • + 3
 well Works Components has developed a -1.5° Headset for tapered...
  • + 1
 Cool, will have a look..
  • + 1
 This Cane Creek fits my Kalula: www.canecreek.com/AngleSet?config=ZS44-ZS49
  • - 2
 Looks like a STD

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