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Airdrop Bikes Previews New Edit MX

Oct 9, 2023 at 13:15
by Airdrop Bikes  

PRESS RELEASE: Airdrop Bikes

James was Airdrop's first employee back in 2017. Over the years he's been a mechanic, a builder, a coach and a guide. These days he heads up the design and development work at Airdrop, which is all done in-house. He's also a fixture in and around Wharncliffe where he digs & rides on a daily basis. In this First Look video we take a close look at James' Edit MX prototype.

bigquotesWe build the bikes we want to ride, and ride the bikes we build.Airdrop Bikes

The Edit MX is the eagerly anticipated fifth iteration of the Airdrop Edit. As a small (four people) and independent (self funded) brand, we've stuck to our plan which is to "build the bikes we want to ride, and ride the bikes we build." So far, that's meant alloy frames and 27.5" wheels - even for our DH bike, the Slacker. And while that's won us friends amongst the die-hard riders that we tend to attract, it has caused a lot of people to ask if there would ever be an Airdrop bike with at least one 29" wheel. Which is a fair question.

We're never going to build a bike just because it's the latest trend; that's just not how we operate. We have to be all-in to develop a new bike and bring it to production. So the challenge was to figure out if we could take the Edit platform to the next level, using mixed wheels, but keep the fun and creativity that we've built a reputation for. We think we've done that. All-in-all, the Edit MX is a faster and much more capable bike than its predecessor. But it's still very much an Airdrop bike. And although it may look superficially like previous bikes, this is an all-new design. That becomes clear when you get up close with it.

Oh, and before we get accused of selling our souls.... we've done a new 27.5" version as well.

James Crossland s Airdrop Edit MX Prototype. There will - of course - be a dedicated 27.5 version too. More details coming with the November launch.
The Edit MX Prototype in its natural habitat: Wharncliffe Woods.

James Crossland s Airdrop Edit MX Prototype. Although the silhouette will be familiar to Airdrop customers this is an all-new frame design. More details coming with the November launch.

In keeping with our 'homegrown' ethos, we produced this video in-house on our local trails. Just like the prototype, it may not be super polished, but it's all us. If you want to skip to the bit you're interested in, no worries. We've set up chapters in the video (the pan-and-zoom-drum-n-bass-bit starts at 2:47).

photo
James in his natural habitat: Wharncliffe Woods.


The Edit MX is set for launch in November 2023.
For anyone who's super keen, preorders are now live. As with all our bikes, The Edit MX and Edit 27.5 frames will be produced in small batches, and bikes built to order.

All the details will be out with the launch but if you have questions, post them in the comments and we'll do our best to answer.

airdropbikes.com

Author Info:
AirdropBikes avatar

Member since Aug 6, 2015
6 articles

112 Comments
  • 54 2
 That's what the new Privateer should look like. Top tube kinks are gross. This looks nice.
  • 124 0
 no kink shaming
  • 5 1
 I've seen the new privateer in the flesh in a couple of different sizes and the kink is far less obvious than it looks in photos. I didn't like the first photos I was but bike looks good in person. That being said I still much prefer the straight lines of my first gen 161. This Edit looks good though, simple solid lines. I know a few guys with airdrop bikes and they have been pretty bombproof. Now they are not exclusively 27.5 I'd be keen to try one.
  • 2 4
 @draggingbrake: comment gold
  • 1 0
 @draggingbrake: my kink is kink shaming.
  • 2 0
 @subwaypanda: That's good to hear.
  • 39 2
 Raw aluminum? Check
Trail dog? Check
Looks like a session? Check

This bike may have been designed by AI to take all our money! Looks sweet.
  • 15 2
 it's designed by pinkbike comments
  • 16 0
 Also, external cable routing. Yes, it ticks the boxes
  • 4 1
 Bottle Cage Mounts
  • 2 0
 Must be a PF BB hiding behind the cranks just to f*** with us.
  • 2 0
 @MTBrent: trunnion, boo.
  • 17 1
 Full 27.5 adept here, not buying that bigger wheels (even if only one of them) makes a playful bike. Mullet bikes are just different, they’re not “best of both worlds” as some companies sell them.

That being said, if Airdrop think this bike is a good idea, I’ll be happy to know they sell them out and get new customers/fans. Real hardworking people with respective ethics. Glad that I found out about them here on PB and bought their frameset. It rides like a dream, costed me more than fairly, and I’ve been feeling respected and valued from the first message to their customer support (thanks, Andy).
  • 16 0
 9mm difference in stack height from smallest frame to largest, one of those frames can't have been built with the intended rider in mind.
  • 8 11
 it keeps the wheelbase in check. most xl's have gone too far imo, makes them plowy.
  • 2 7
flag tb927 (Oct 10, 2023 at 1:41) (Below Threshold)
 just slap a big riser on, gives you the bar height you want with more top tube clearance = a bonus (another perk of being tall, not that it's all roses)
  • 12 4
 Stack height is a reflection of the way the frame is constructed, so we're making design decisions about fabrication, packaging and also aesthetics there. As we're building bikes to order, we offer a variety of options on headset spacers and different rise bars from 30mm to 50mm. Also it's possible to run a 170mm fork rather than the stock 160mm. So in terms of ergonomics there are a few options to fine-tune things.
  • 8 3
 @hot-beef-sundae: You don't understand what stack is.
  • 6 0
 @getonyourbike:

Does he not? To increase stack keeping reach identical the front centre and therefore wheelbase increase. Unless you have a 90° head angle.
  • 1 0
 Honestly, all companies should be just doing oversize headtube so you can run offset bearing cups for reach adjust. Between that and spacer height, you can dial in reach however you want.
  • 1 0
 @getonyourbike: you dont understand the x axis
  • 15 0
 I like how you operate Airdrop.
  • 9 0
 Got the edit 4 and it's the best bike I've owned hands down. Does everything I want a bike to do well and I was stuck on if 27.5 was the right move before I bought it. Just so much more nimble. The bike tracks the ground well loads of grip even in the wet. Buzzing to see some limelight for a great company
  • 11 0
 "Oh, and before we get accused of selling our souls..." better to adapt and survive than choose a wheel size as your hill to die on
  • 16 8
 nice. to me, mullet is more fun than full 27.5 thanks to its ability to carry a little more speed and not get caught up in chunk as easily.
  • 19 3
 I've just gone back to full 27 after a few years on mullet. I can understand what you mean, and I've found the better cornering feel and more neutral jumping has been worth going to the 27 in front. Plus the fact I am running a bigger fork. So I'll stay same size for a bit.
  • 14 2
 @russthedog: word. people often don't consider how much bigger fork you can run on a 27.5 wheel vs a 29er.
  • 4 3
 @flattire: Do they make a 220mm fork for 27.5" wheels?
  • 6 0
 @rojo-1: BOS does. Intend have a 215
  • 18 11
 @russthedog: I rode my wifes old 26" Turner DHR from 2012 at the bike park today, and I'd forgotten just how much more fun I have on smaller wheels. It was pretty eye opening after spending the past 4 years on a 29er enduro bike and a 27.5 DH bike. It took me about 1 run to feel as comfortable on her bike as I do on mine, despite not having ridden a 26" since 2015. Drifting and cornering and jibbing and jibeing are orders of magnitude more fun on smaller wheels. Next pedal bike will 100% be a 27.5 (and not a mullet), 29 is for racer nerds that wear lycra and are looking to shave off time on the uphills.
  • 6 1
 @flattire: True, but the 29er front is better rolling over technical chop. I do think the mullet is great especially for shorter riders because butt/crotch buzz is for real on 29 inch rear.
  • 4 0
 @wburnes: I wish I could buy a BOS fork. They look cool and have a lot of interesting tech I would love to try, but I have heard nothing but horror story after horror story of trying to get spare parts and aftersales support for their stuff. Especially in the states.

Does anyone know if they have improved?
  • 1 0
 @wburnes: Fair enough, on the BOS fork which I seen nobody run, this enables more travel on 27.5...
I think on the Intend you can still run 215mm with 29"
  • 8 3
 29 is dead, release the mini MX already
  • 3 2
 @William42: i had a 26" Turner DHR too and did love it but eventually i took it to a DH race and while it was great fun on a normal days riding, the clock didn't lie, it was holding me back even compared to my modern 29er Enduro bike, fast and capable is fun too but you just end up going even faster to get that on the edge adrenaline rush.
  • 1 0
 @naptime: nicolai has a mini mx dh bike
  • 2 0
 @rojo-1: agree, not a fair comparison on a bike like this. On a 150mm 29er vs a 180mm 27.5er it is.
  • 1 0
 @tacklingdummy: an extra 30mm of travel fork with a 27.5 front wheel also help you get through that same chop.
  • 1 0
 @flattire: It would be a good test/competition for Pinkbike to do. Less travel 29er vs more travel 27.5, but 30mm is pretty big difference in my opinion. I think 20mm difference would be better because the stanchion size (36 vs 3Cool makes a difference too. 150mm 29 36 vs 170mm 27.5 38 grudge match would be more even.
  • 1 0
 @tacklingdummy: While i get the argument you can fit more travel into the same front end height on a 27.5 i think they achieve very different things, bigger travel will absorb more chunk but it also gives you less to push against for pop off things or support on smoother trails or berms so will create quite different riding bikes for different applications, just like comparing any bike with bigger travel to another with less travel regardless of wheel size, just depands what you want to achieve.
  • 1 0
 @maglor: well, 29ers are celebrated for their ability to monster truck through chop. I'm saying that you can package in an additional 40mm of travel on a 27.5 bike for the same crown-to-ground 29er dimension. (20mm larger wheel radius on a 29er, and 20mm longer axle to crown required on a 29er fork)

I literally have these two bikes at home. A 180mm 27.5 er with 37mm stanchions, and a 150mm 29er with 35mm stanchions forks.
  • 1 0
 @maglor: I agree. That is why it would be a good test. I have had both, 140mm 29er and 160mm 27.5. Both are great in technical chop. I was a little faster on the 29er on some tracks and a little faster on the 27.5 on some tracks, but that could be to a variety of factors. I really don't know if one would be faster than the other. I guess it just depends on the rider and the track.
  • 2 0
 @flattire: And how do these 2 bikes compare? i dare say they behave quite differently, i don't think 29er wheels make up the same as 40mm extra travel in the chop, but the shorter travel bike will feel better or at least more peppy and less sluggish on smoother trails, maybe an extra 10 or 20mm on the 27.5 would be more of a similar experiance, bikes are a balance of all round ability so you can't simplify it to i can have more travel for the chop, not unless you ride 100% chop.
  • 11 3
 headtube should be 56mm straight so you can run reach adjust headsets.
  • 12 0
 We do that with the Slacker DH bike and it works great with dual-crown forks that have 1 1/8" steerers. But with single-crown forks that have tapered steerers, 56mm doesn't get you any extra room on the lower headset. You'd have to go to an external cup. Which you can do with the 44/56 head tube anyway, as long as you don't mind adding a bit to the stack height.
  • 4 0
 @AirdropBikes: And you even answer folks in the comments with cogent, relevant answers!!!
  • 8 0
 "the pan-and-zoom-drum-n-bass-bit starts at 2:47"

Big Grin
  • 4 0
 Damn, can’t complain with anything here. Even the comments are all positively charged (wtf)

@airdropbikes could you upload effective top tube to your geo to make choosing a size easier !

Will definitely be returning to 27.5 when the new model is available
  • 7 0
 One of the sickest companies on the market
  • 2 0
 For those that don't have time/inclination to watch the video.

Doesn't give much geo information, but he did specify that it was 475mm reach, and a 64 degree HTA.

And yeah, its getting strong Privateer 161 / Raaw Madonna vibes from it. Which isn't a bad thing.
  • 2 0
 Lol, turns out the rest was in the link.

S3 is:

475mm reach
633mm stack
1254mm wheelbase
438mm chainstay
64 degree HTA
~78 degree effective STA
430mm seat tube length.

www.airdropbikes.com/collections/edit-mx-frames/products/edit-mx-frame-ext-storia-coil
  • 2 0
 I have a question (mostly for fun; I'm probably not in the market for a new frame for a couple more years, but I like the looks of this thing).
What are the chances of a successful mini mullet setup on the 27.5 version? From experience, that BB drop is about as low as I'd like on dual 27.5 wheels, and the inch of lost wheel diameter drops it about another 8mm. Could a guy long-shock this frame, or would it push the rocker link past inline with the seatstays and not work?
  • 3 0
 It’s not possible to run a longer shock length; the seatstay/rocker link is designed to reduce mud ingress so it can’t rotate any further. So you’d be stuck with the extra-low BB and also slacker angles. Real-world effect would depend on how big the rear tyre is.
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes: cheers, appreciate the reply!
  • 4 1
 Well done lads, I'm into it! You wouldn't have gained me as a potential customer with full 27.5", but now the bike is properly mixed-wheel compatible, it's gone straight onto my short list.
  • 2 0
 I like that the bike is dirty, it's a nice aesthetic. Most bike releases the bike is super shiny while being in a mud bog or the middle of the woods. Bikes are meant to be ridden!
  • 1 0
 Looks good! Having owned the V3 and still riding my V4 I'm looking forward to trying this one out!

@AirdropBikes Does it use the same bearing sizes as the V4? I have a spare set for my current V4, would be cool if it carries over to the MX.
  • 3 0
 Hi Sake, great to know you're still on board! The new Edit still uses 6001 bearings in the main pivots and 6900 in the Trunnion mount, but we've moved to a bigger 6902 bearing in the chainstay pivot and a double-row 3901 in the seatstay/rocker pivot as part of the new braceless design.
  • 3 0
 @airdropbikes new setup looks sweet, great work!! Appreciate the tunes, blast from the past...LTJ Wink
  • 2 0
 It's 'Circles' by Adam F (from the Colours album) but still... lot of good tunes from Bukem in that era too.
  • 1 0
 They've just had the bike (as in, THE bike, that one in those photos up there) nicked from there Van. Posted on their Insta stories. Not sure how to add a link to Instagram here im afraid.
  • 4 0
 Nice Edit
  • 5 5
 like the company, but being 6'4" riding in high dessert terrain, I'm just hoping for a full 29" at some point. I know you guys love the 27.5 but I happen to love the 29, wouldn't you say there room for both?....Please?
  • 13 2
 tall people deserve 29/32 mullets
  • 9 1
 it's not like there's a shortage of oversized 29 bikes on the market
  • 19 0
 There’s definitely a place for 27.5”, mullet and 29”. I can see us doing a full 29” bike at some point. But I have to bet my house on it so let me get over this one first!
  • 1 0
 Looks great. Still loving my edit V4 and 27" wheels
doubtful but any chance of making a UDH compatible removable dropout for the V4 and the filter?
  • 2 0
 We looked at it but there are a couple of challenges - first we changed the chainstay dropout design for the new Edit which we couldn't do with the interchangeable layout. Second, the new T-type drivetrain runs a different chainline so we've worked in new clearances on the rear end to accommodate for that. Obviously we'll still support the v1/2/3/4 customers with hangers & dropouts though.
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes: Thanks for the reply, saves me a whole bunch of money too
  • 1 0
 They need to bring this out fully raw with a polished rocker like the one on their Slacker dh bike, that would look awesome .
  • 2 0
 The Edit 27.5 will be available in 'Pitch Black' which is a matte black powder coat with a natural ano rocker, just like the Slacker. The Edit MX will be available in 'Raw' which is a new matte raw finish with a black rocker, or 'Sean Grean' which is a new matte green powder coat with a natural ano rocker.
  • 2 0
 Will the production raw frames be fully raw or will they still have the mismatched black stays? I much prefer this version.
  • 2 0
 The production 'Raw' frames will have a new finish which is hand-brushed and then a clear matte powder coat applied. So they look properly raw but won't oxidise. Both the front and rear ends will be raw. The rocker and all the hardware is black ano and the chainstay protector is black TPE rubber.
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes: sounds mint can't wait to see them. Will you have a demo bike? Or should I just wait until Wharny is full of them?
  • 2 0
 @TommyNunchuck: We'll have demo bikes once the production stock arrives in a few weeks. Or yeah just wait til you see us in Wharny sometime!
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes: is it possible to order with no top/down tube decals?
  • 1 0
 @dave1075: they're vinyl, just take them off
  • 2 0
 @dave1075: What @TommyNunchuck said is true but we're also changing the decal layout so there will be just one small decal on the top tube and no downtube decal at all. Much more subtle than previously.
  • 6 3
 "Looks like a Madonna"
  • 14 0
 That’s a compliment if you ask me! But we’ve been quietly making bikes like this since 2015.
  • 1 0
 It looks like an Airdrop really mate, with some resemblance to the old Kona Process frames perhaps.
  • 2 0
 @AirdropBikes: Was a compliment (to you and them). It's a beautiful bike!
  • 2 0
 Looks like an aluminum Chromag
  • 2 0
 Absolutely want it! Get rid of that prototype and just sell it like that
  • 3 0
 The production bikes will come with a raw finish option, as always!
  • 1 0
 Short girl here, so my eyes lit up when I read that 27.5 isn’t dead Smile what is the reach on your size small for this bike?
  • 3 0
 The S1 size has a 430mm reach for both the Edit 27.5 and Edit MX
  • 1 0
 any options will come with air shock or is it all coils on the new models? looks sick
  • 2 0
 Shock options for now are Rockshox SDLX Ultimate Coil, Öhlins TTX Coil or EXT Storia Coil. We’re running a Vivid on a prototype so possibly we’ll offer that with the next batch.
  • 2 0
 Crosspool flying
  • 1 0
 Very Pre-DW Turner looking
  • 1 0
 Love this company, producing bikes for the right reasons!
  • 1 0
 Bike looks great & they have used LTJ Bukem in their vid, winner!
  • 1 0
 That is a gorgeous bike. Very clean look. Well done!
  • 1 0
 very nice, see a few of these around wharny always taking a good beating!
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes Is there an accessory mount?
  • 1 0
 No accessory mount, just the one set of bottle-cage bosses.
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes what about a dual crown on these frames?
  • 1 0
 That's what the Slacker is for. Can run up to a 170mm Zeb on the Edit MX and 27.5.
  • 1 0
 @AirdropBikes: what about those who don't have the luxury or want of a dh bike, but want to run a dual crown when they fancy it?
  • 1 0
 @FBM-BMX: It's a fair question for sure, but that's a bit of an edge-case to design for. That customer would need to have a spare set of DH forks with the travel dropped, just for this specific purpose. We get a similar line of questioning with the Slacker - some people want to run 1x12 on it. But we wouldn't make 98% of customers run with a compromised design to satisfy the 2%
  • 1 0
 Can it run a Rockshox vivid?
  • 2 2
 Apple cease and desist incoming...
  • 1 0
 Nice
  • 1 3
 Kinda looks like a Transition Patrol, dunnit?
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