Bike Check: Matt Lakin's Fully Rigid Stooge Cycles MK4 Enduro Race Bike

Oct 29, 2020 at 14:12
by Nick Bentley  

Matt Lakin's
Stooge Cycles MK4
Photography and words by Nick Bentley (Man Down Media)
How could we not do a bike check on this fully rigid beast of a hardtail?

Possibly the most talked-about bike from our 18 hardtails of the Southern Enduro article, this fully rigid enduro bike had to have a bike check all of its own. Matt's Stooge MK4 is pretty special and Matt is so passionate about his bike we could have sat and chatted all day about bike setups and features of this unique bike.

I asked Matt about how the bike was to ride at Milland in the mud and he replied:

"The full 29er worked well in the slop and bogs this weekend. The sweet handling had me railing the ruts and carrying speed on through the tight trees and rough chutes - I got bucked offline once during the race. The bottom line is this thing makes me smile so much... Whether I'm looking at it, riding it, or beating my mates riding their 'beer cans' and 'fantastic plastics' with it!"
Matt Lakin // Stooge Cycles / Steel is Real
Age: 42
Hometown: North Yorkshire lad now living in Stroud, Gloucestershire
Height: 5'8"
Weight: 67kg
Instagram: @tamarin08

The "Red Baron" really is a fully rigid race machine.

No carbon here just lots of steel goodness
Stooge Cycles Mk4 "The Red Baron"
Frame: Stooge Cycles Mk4
Fork: Stooge Cycles Bi-plane 80mm offset
Wheels: 29" Spank Oozy Trail 395+ non-boost
Tires: Front: WTB Vigilante 29x2.5" Tritec Light/High Grip; Rear: Maxxis Minion DHF 3C Max Terra 29x2.5"
Drivetrain: Shimano SLX 11 speed with Saint cranks. CrankBrothers Mallet-E pedals
Brakes: Shimano XT / Deore mash-up
Cockpit: Funn Crossfire 50mm / Stooge Moto Bars
Size: Mk4 is one size only
Weight: 30lbs
More info: Stooge Cycles

bigquotesIt was love at first sight when I saw the MK4. Life's too short to ride bad bikes!Matt Lakin


The Mk4 is one size only and that frame comes in at:

Head Angle: 66° (Fork Offset/Rake: 80mm giving approx. effective HA: 63.5°)
Seat Tube Angle: 74°
Reach: 446mm (Effective TT: 625mm)
Chainstay Length: 445mm
BB Drop: 60mm +/-15mm depending on the EBB position which allows for both chain tensioning and geometry adjustment (Matt has his at 12 o'clock to help with hoppin' & poppin')
So where do we start? I think really it has to be with the stunning frame and fork combo from Stooge Cycles in Shropshire. I say frame and fork combo because this is an all-or-nothing, go-big-or-go-home deal and the Stooge Cycles MK4 frame's geometry only works with these rigid forks. The frame is double-butted aircraft grade 4130 Chromoly steel, with the forks being made triple-butted 4130. The Andrew-Stevenson-designed frame really is a head turner with the twin top tube that flows seamlessly into the seat stays, which then drop to the rear axle together with the biplane raked-out rigid forks.

Despite its classic look and steel construction, the bike is imbued with very modern geometry and I think that just adds to the beauty of this bike. It is a bit of a sleeper, an unexpected giant killer of a bike, something that Matt has backed up with his race results. For example at Round 3 of the Southern Enduro series Matt was only 17 seconds behind a World Cup downhill racer after the five mud infested stages. Still think you need a 10K carbon 180mm full suspension bike to go fast?

The Stooge MK4's slack and low geometry is designed around an 80mm offset, non-boost, rigid fork. This bi-plane fork gives a classic, retro vibe but it's far from style over substance. Manufactured from triple-butted aircraft grade 4130 Chromoly steel, the fork puts the 29" wheel way out in front for confidence and stability. For all you bottle cage addicts out there, it also has triple cage mounts on the fork legs for all of your hydration needs.

Matt has added a much needed front fender to his MK4 as well as the all-important "NO SHOX" decals. Just one of the many personal touches made to this truly one of a kind bike.

It's worth saying this bike has some of the neatest cable routings I have seen, along with some colour coordinated red frame protectors in the places the cables come in to contact with the Stooge MK4 red powder coat paintwork.

Carrying on the unique Stooge theme of this bike, Matt runs the Stooge Moto Bars, which are made from heat-treated 7050 aluminium. These come stock at 800mm wide with a 38mm rise and a 17-degree sweep but Matt has cut his downs to 780mm. The large back sweep of this bar helps with a more comfortable wrist position and aids handling. It also in Matt's words "the Moto bars help the bike ooze menace. Like it's bristling for a scrap with the nearest singletrack. Such a badass bike to look at." I have to agree with him on that.

Matt runs Shimano XT brakes front and rear with 180mm discs. Although after an unscheduled trip to the dirt on a ride recently the rear lever is now a Shimano Deore lever. One of the most useful things about the Shimano brake line up is the ability to use any lever with any calliper making repairs a little cheaper and quicker.

29er Spank Oozy Trail 395+ non-boost wheelset is a perfect fit for this bike like so many of the other components Matt has selected for this build. He calls them a no-nonsense part and likes that they just work with minimal fuss.

On an otherwise tidy build, here is the moment the pedants may want to look away. Matt runs two different tyre brands on this build: the front is a WTB Vigilante 29x2.5"Tritec Light/High Grip. This was chosen because it was just so much more lively and considerably lighter than they 3" Double Down tyre that Matt originally ran. At the rear, there is a Maxxis Minion DHF 3C Max Terra 29x2.5". Matt runs tubeless front and rear but with no inserts. Matt also runs a Lezyne bottle cage with tool and pump fitted, after all this is an enduro race bike.

Drivetrain wise we find the workhorse Shimano SLX 11 speed groupset with a KMC chain. Along with the SLX mech, cassette, threaded bottom bracket and shifter, there is a set of 165mm Saint cranks.

Matt also runs clips with his pedal of choice being the CrankBrothers Mallet-E pedals. For added insurance on a bike with no suspension at all, there is the classic Oneup chainguide, giving the poor Shimano clutch a helping hand in keeping the KMC chain where it should be when Matt is charging down Enduro stages.

Matt's Stooge MK4 is finished off with a KS dropper, which is internally routed. On top of the dropper is a Fabric saddle described by Matt as the "sit up and beg model". I'm not sure there is anything sit up and beg about this bike.

I can't thank Matt enough for his time and the detail he gave me on his bike. It's always amazing to speak to people who are so passionate about their bikes. If you fancy something a little different why not check out Stooge Cycles.

MENTIONS: @Man_Down_Media / Stooge Cycles / Steel is Real


  • 132 4
 My back hurts at just the thought of attempting an enduro race on this bike. Major props to Mr. Lakin for going old school, and proving it's always more about the rider and less about the bike.
  • 52 0
 Genuinely amazing result, beat every ebike and the vast majority of the men's field! My wrists and ankles don't want to go anywhere near that bike though.
  • 21 0
 Not sure I agree, it is probably mostly to do with the rider, but the right bike can make a big difference. and If you couple a great rider with the right bike then you have gold.
  • 50 0
 Its not like your rigid 1992 Specialized Rockhopper. They don't beat you up like you think. The geo means it rides extremely well, handles chunk and steeps, drops well. Since the dawn of suspension, no manufacturers have really invested in designing a rigid bike as a system. They merely swap rigid forks into a bike designed for suspension. This is different, frame and fork designed together from the ground up. Only Jones is doing something similar but for a slightly different purpose. Its not all down to suspension travel, cunning geo choice can make a bike fast and comfortable too. I have had a Mk2 Stooge and now a Mk4 like Matt.
  • 8 1
 Also about the terrain. People forget that in PNW area, there is actual dirt and loam. Go to other places and you are riding hardpack over rocks and roots, on which that bike is going to be very slow unless he is running like 8 psi in his tires with major rim protection.
  • 3 1
 @phops: It certainly goes better on certain tracks but I wouldn't say it goes badly on any either. Check out this year's PMBA race at Graythwaite on Roots & Rain for an idea of what it can handle - it placed 2nd HT there. :-)
  • 8 14
flag streetkvnt-kvlt (Nov 3, 2020 at 15:31) (Below Threshold)
 Why is it that people who swear by and only ride rigid have to always make a point of telling everyone about it.

You ride a rigid bike, congratulations, do you expect a f*cking medal or something?!
  • 4 0
 @streetkvnt-kvlt: Yeah, kvnt suits pretty well..
  • 2 0
 @tamarin08: haha ok just this one time!

I'll admit I have two rigid bikes myself haha...
  • 1 0
 @Pukeproof: my work here is done.
  • 106 0
 - Hey Matt, how much offset you'd like in the fork?
- Yes
  • 5 0
 I would like to know how it rides.
  • 25 116
flag maxx-x (Nov 2, 2020 at 4:53) (Below Threshold)
 @IntoTheEverflow: what do you think? Of course it rides like shit... It has no suspension after all.
  • 36 2
 @maxx-x: I ride without suspension....
I just wondered about the offset.
  • 10 0
 - all of it
  • 3 0
 80mm offset ????
  • 109 1
 @tamarin08: the fork was straight at the start of stage 1...
  • 15 0
 Matt: Lets see... short travel forks on an enduro bike is 160mm. So 160 travel divided by 2 suspension legs = 80. I will take a rigid fork with 80mm offset. LOL
  • 2 0
 @IntoTheEverflow: point where you want to go in corners and it goes there, fantastic cornering and the ability to hold a line. Loves the rough stuff, your weight is further back so it can ride through some pretty rough trails. It can also nip to the shops/pub/schools run - mine does! Heading out for a night ride later and it'll be a hoot on the sodden/leafy trails, can't wait ????
  • 2 0
 @Motoracer31: :-) :-) :-)
  • 1 0
 @Motoracer31: a classic case of casing...
  • 2 0
 I'd love to have a go on it too, looks so much fun. Top tube is low so that's good. On my hardtail I never feel like my legs are having that much of a hard time over rough sections, but my arms and hands do at times. And I do have 120mm of front suspension! That said, his font wheel is bigger, his front tire is fatter (I'm running 26x2.4" in the front) so that should help. But that's just talk just like full sus riders claim hardtails hurt your ankles and back. Just get on one of these, must be a blast to ride!
  • 1 0
 This I can support.
  • 87 0
 "It's a giant killer of a bike"......

I call bullsh!t. I would guess that Matt is the giant killer. I wouldnt be 17 seconds behind a WC Downhiller on my Slash let alone on a hard tail, let alone on a fully rigid.

Awesome bike - UNDOUBTEDLY - But give credit where its due
  • 7 0
 Someone sponsor the FELLAH!!!
  • 2 1
 From what I understand, this event is basically Mr. Lankin's back yard, and he's placed pretty high a few times at it before.
  • 12 0
 @PHeller: Milland race is on private land and is only used for races. It's 2.5 hours from my home (not local by UK standards). Full disclosure: I have raced there twice before.
  • 4 0
 @tamarin08: So you're just THAT good!
  • 3 0
 @PHeller: Bike really is a bit of a 'sleeper' - the geo is so sorted. I was out with a crazy crew of young'n's at the weekend on their enduro sleds and we swapped around and their bikes feel so twitchy compared to the Mk4. After the initial "woah!" response they were into the Stooge and could feel why it works.
  • 1 1
 This is the perfect example of whats wrong with the bicycle industry from a marketing point of view. This proves you can put a good rider on an average bike and they will still be faster than an average rider on a good bike.

"See how amazing our bike is!!!!ZOMGWTFBBQ!!!!1!!!1H4XZ0R!"

And yet we are seeing it here as well "GIANTZ KILLLARRRRRRRR GRRRRR ARRRRGH"
  • 2 0
 @JoshieK: @JoshieK: except for the the fact that this bike is anything but average. But I see the point youre aiming at.
  • 52 6
 At least you won't need a lock.
  • 8 0
 Unless John Prolly's around...
  • 4 0
 Unsprung hate?
  • 2 0
 @kpickrell: He means a lock out. Levy calls it a cheater switch, @filsdanvers calls it a lock.
  • 41 2
 "The bottom line is this thing makes me smile so much... Whether I'm looking at it, riding it, or beating my mates riding their 'beer cans' and 'fantastic plastics' with it" - That is all that matters buddy, she's a beaut!
  • 27 60
flag landscapeben (Nov 2, 2020 at 5:17) (Below Threshold)
 Can't agree with that, it's like modern geometry married to the ugliest traits of old school bikes from the 1920's, the thing is horrendous to look at regardless of how it performs. But each to their own, variety is the spice of life and all that.
  • 10 1
 @landscapeben: I thought they were horrible when I first saw them and then I totally changed my mind and bought one
  • 23 11
 @landscapeben: I find Surly's sexy - and chubby girls in glasses! Beauty really is what you make of it
  • 1 0
 @landscapeben: looks are subjective. I personally love the look of the frame but would want to have the option of running a suspension fork. I imagine it looks much better in the flesh.
  • 13 44
flag enduroNZ (Nov 2, 2020 at 6:39) (Below Threshold)
 Please leave your crass comments for pornhub @sewer-rat:
  • 32 12
 @enduroNZ: up yours snowflake - I'm not afraid to tell people what I like and will continue to do so
  • 12 47
flag enduroNZ (Nov 2, 2020 at 7:39) (Below Threshold)
 Well hopefully you’ll get banned at some stage then @sewer-rat:
  • 18 9
 @enduroNZ: get the pitch fork out- lemme guess , you probably tried to get Waki banned too?? Either way report me to the mods and point to where the internet hurt you today
  • 4 4
 @sewer-rat: The voting says you're winning this one, we must all be some sort of cist.
  • 4 4
 @jaysmudger: Salute sick boyz in the comments
  • 19 21
 Yes he was an idiot too, I don’t think it’s acceptable to degrade women on pink bike, if that gets me downvoted then I’m perfectly comfortable with that and shame on the other people that won’t speak out. @sewer-rat:
  • 6 2
 @enduroNZ: Just shown this to my lass, she did not find it sexist or offensive. BTW she is chubby and wears glasses and told me to say that. Your move.
  • 16 4
 @enduroNZ: how am I downgrading women, jeez because I’ve told you what I think is hot and sharing my belief?? Get back to ya igloo
  • 10 3
 @jaysmudger: I married a plus size woman of whom I adore- she wears glasses too
  • 6 5

Previous comment by you - calling females “chicks” - bravo fella, bravo
Please add hypocrite to your post above about degrading women

“ enduroNZ norcobicycles's article
Sep 27, 2019
Norco Introduces New Line of Progressive Youth Mountain Bikes
Not what the chick at your local bar told me @Stanley-w”
  • 4 1
 @sewer-rat: enjoy the ride.
  • 3 2
 @enduroNZ: Not going to get you laid bruh.
  • 3 0
 @sewer-rat: hmm you did the research..careful because that's approaching weirdo territory
  • 5 0
 @nordland071285: I am a weirdo Beer
  • 27 1
 One of the best bike checks in ages.... I'm sick of seeing I ride an off the self but top of the line bike by [insert frame sponsor here] with an off the shelf but top the line suspension duties by [insert suspension sponsor here] and off the shelf but top the line components by [insert component sponsor here]. Bar width is 780 and tire pressure 25ish

But wait.... they are running +/- 1 10mm spacer than stock and they have +/- 1 token than what is currently trendy, so their bike is "unique"
  • 2 0
 Thanks man ????????
  • 2 1
 I always forget the thumbs up emoji dosnt work on pinkbike
  • 17 1
 I ride a blue MK4, 40mm inner width rims and 2.6" tires as a singlespeed - this bike flies and is just so much fun to ride. Most of the time I prefer this one to my Hightower or geared hardtail. Andrew is such a nice guy to do business width - highly recommended!
  • 3 0
 They do international sales? His site says he is working on the Mk5 version, I'm strongly considering trying to get one when he starts making them again.

Oh yeah, post a photo of yours! (if you don't mind)
  • 3 0
 @KavuRider: You'll have to get in quick....he is small time and can only front small batches, hence the rapid iterations. Get a pre order in when it opens or miss out. I think he has sent them all over the world no probs.
  • 1 0
 @KavuRider: Yes, just email Andrew and set up the international sale. Frame + shipping comes out to around $1,000USD. I have a Scrambler in the garage!
  • 2 0
 @StradaRedlands: done!

Thanks all!
  • 1 0
 @KavuRider: Good deal. They are great bikes. Modern geometry and standards, but full rigid build. For most of my rides I don't need suspension (glorified gravel grinding) so Stooge bikes are PERFECT. I was looking at Jones bikes as well, but like the aesthetic of Stooge a bit more.
  • 17 0
 That World Cup racer mentioned in the article is Brendog.
  • 2 0
 Wyn was at the Minehead race too.....
  • 1 0
 @kiksy: Brendog is the one (just) 17s quicker than Mr. Lakin, though.
  • 1 0
 I would not take that comment too seriously, from the roots and rain page, the top U18 rider was slower than the top U14. I looks like weather had a rather large role in times achieved
  • 18 3
 Unreal. What a bike. Its refreshing to look at in a world of 170mm 29er enduro sleds
  • 11 2
 Absolute respect for this nutter. Close inspection reveals mismatched tires and all sorts of obviously unconventional bits & bobs.. clearly doesn't give a toss for fads.. love it.
  • 1 0
 Who even cares about running tires from different brands? I do so too (Conti front, Schwalbe rear) but never considered it odd. I think a very small minority runs the exact same tire (model, width etc) front and rear so with them being different brands shouldn't matter much.
  • 11 1
 Just needs a basket to finish it. Defiantly proves it's the rider not the bike!
  • 9 0
 I wonder just how much that fork flexes up and down in use, must really soften the ride up front I bet it feels great!
  • 5 0
 I've got one, the fork doesn't flex as much as it looks like it would, but most Stooge's are running 29+ up front anyway
  • 12 3
 How much faster would he be on a Scott Ransom?
  • 34 3
 Doesn't matter. This guy loves his bike and he loves riding it. For some people, that's what mountain biking is all about.
  • 4 2
 @hardtailparty: Amen to that
  • 2 0
 @hardtailparty: love your channel man!! Hardtail love all day haha.
  • 1 0
 @hardtailparty: yeah wow it's you, love the channel! And if anyone wants to sell me a Cotic SodaMAX in L hit me up
  • 2 0
 @MuddyFoxCourierComp: thanks for the kind words everyone. I love hardtails and I love making videos about them.
  • 9 0
 I respect it, but I sure as hell don't understand it.
  • 5 0
 That's unusually low trail for a MTB, 81 mm horizontal and 74 mm mechanical/perpendicular by my calc. Compare to 125/113 mm on my v2 Transition Scout with a 2.5 front tire, for reference.

My guess is that a rider accustomed to a more conventional suspended short-offset bike would be freaked out by how fast it turns, but it's within the range of something you'd get used to if you spent enough time on it.
  • 5 0
 Mountain bike(period) I fall prey as any of us PB followers and buy what others say is great... this really shook me back to reality... 120/130/140/150/160... have each of them, and a DH bike(x3) that just hang in the garage... why? Because a rigid SS always brings me a smile and sense of accomplishment every time! Yes the others make riding more comfortable, allow me to go faster(no, will not commit Stravacide), and may allow me to ride for a longer period of time, but do I really need these marginal gains if I no longer race? Flying down on the edge of control is so much more exhilarating than hitting Mach 10 fully in control! Even more exhilarating if you’re smoking all your riding buddies down/up. We are all told that these products will climbs better, corner better, descend better, etc, for what reason, for marginal gains in riding enjoyment? I do get it, if you are on the verge of hanging with your riding crew and need a slight boost to get you there, get a bike that fits your needs! But progressive/linear, long+slack, short/long offset, carbon/Alu rims, POE, coil/air, high/low pivot, ...the holy grail will always be great bathroom material to read about and ponder, but grab that mountain bike (no, not the Enduro, All Mountain, Trail, Aggressive Trail, XC, Gravel(let’s just admit these are mountain bikes)) and go clear the section you’ve never cleared, pick a different line down the trail that is not well worn, slap that grin on when your eyes stop bouncing in your skull at the end of a ride, and repeat as much as possible, that’s a mountain bike! Thanks Matt!
... buy/sell will be posting my bikes up soon, damn it
  • 1 0
 Wise words my man!
  • 8 0
 Mary Poppins enduro bike!
  • 3 0
 If it would have boost(so that I can change my wheels with other bikes), thru axle 15 + 12mm, 200mm diskbrake support and rideable size for my 1,93cm, I would buy it - no question asked. Would love to get such a retro feeling like 30years ago Smile Perfect combination with my 170mmcoilbomber Smile
  • 2 0
 The Dirt Bomb is the next model to come - will have boost spacing.
  • 1 0
 @tamarin08: can't wait to see this one. K wish I lived closer to stooge.
  • 7 0
 am i missing something? how does offset = slacker effective hta?
  • 1 1
 Draw a line from the stem cap to the axle. Now move that axle forward a bit. The angle is now more obtuse/slack, I believe this is what they are referring to.
  • 7 1
 It doesn't really, they are just extrapolating to a conventional offset.

The bikes been designed as a system as a rigid bike.

Every other hardtail is designed as a system with a suspension fork (even if they slap a rigid on)

Why would you think the angles from a suspension bike would work for a rigid bike? Stooge is pushing the boundaries of rigid bikes... no one else except Jones.
  • 5 0
 @was8v: i didn't think that. all i thought was that offset isnt the same as a slacker head angle lol

@thisspock Yeah, but that's not head tube angle aka the angle of the steerer, that's just offset moving wheel forward, not really "effective" head tube angle or whatever

Would really love to try one though
  • 1 0
 @Civicowner: Yeah this is just idiots world of "i made a thing and its got some stupid stuff on it so I made up some bullshit to justify it"
  • 3 0
 I have a nicolai g16 and a jones and this bike puts a smile one my face. For the guys wondering about the harshness- the geometry is key to making this work. There is some give in the fork but the long offset allows the bike to handle the roughest stuff, without beating you up. I ride much of the same stuff on the jones as the nicolai. The lines choices change and I am more conscious of oh shit moments on the jones but honestly there are days I want the simplicity of the jones and some days the cushiness of the g16. Rigid bikes built as a system work, tire pressure is important and I prefer running huge rubber (2.8 with tannus tubeless right now). Dont knock it till you try it, i have had guys ride my jones and they can't believe how it corners and handles plus its super comfy for hours. I may have to get one of these and try singlespeed though.....will wait for boost model so I can switch wheels.
  • 6 0
  • 3 0
 There's always at least one of this guy at every bike shop. In the mid 2000's I worked with a guy that built a fixed gear, rigid, 26" front, 24" rear, on a old schwinn cruiser frame as his main mountain bike.
  • 5 3
 Anyone who is saying how much it must hurt or why he does this,...

Is really saying: my EGO hurts badly right now, I spend so much money on bike “insert brand” promised ill be faster on, but I still cannot even get to top 10 on my local trail I have been riding million times!
  • 2 0
 Turns out the most important bikeinventions of the last decades were ( in no particular order): propper geometry, good tires, discbrakes and dropper.

( I started DH -Racing in 1995 with mag 21, V-Brakes and Panaracer Smoke Dart, coming from this the Michelin C 16 and the Magura Gustav m were the biggest gamechangers, concerning trailriding its got to be the dropper.)
  • 2 0
 These Stooge Mk4s are freakishly capable for a rigid bike.
Had mine since February and I've put about 1000km on it (of the 4000km I've done on a bike this year).
Absolutely love blasting around techy, steep singletrack on it, but it's also great for long days out in the saddle. Longest ride I've done on it was about 80km.
Rigid riders rule ;-)
  • 7 1
 This guy gets it.
  • 1 0
 This has me eyeballing my old steel 26" hardtail that has a steep hta. I wonder how it'd ride with a rigid high offset 29" fork and wheel? I can confidently say it'd probably ride better than the horrible Manitou minute it has. I bought the manitou because it was cheap, like 80% off.
  • 1 0
 Also that stooge is gorgeous! I'd love to try one.
  • 6 1
 "fully rigid beast of a hardtail"? Really, Pinkbike?
  • 4 0
 same with guitars...EVH could shred on a walmart guitar. the talent is in the rider/player.
  • 4 0
 At 42 I really don't see anyone doing this and when my dad was that age he wouldn't even go mountain biking!
  • 1 0
 So usually Pinkbike likes to tell us that often it's just 10mm or more travel that makes something an enduro bike instead of a trail bike. Yet, here we have 0mm of travel, and it's being called an enduro bike, _because that's how it's ridden_! They like to tell us that a half inch travel difference makes a bike more or less "capable", and the "less capable" is usually claimed to be a relatively terrible choice for enduro racing. I think this one proves that classifying bike by travel is quite simplistic and kinda needs to go away a bit. Sure, most people are going to want a 170mm bike for racing enduro, and maybe want something more like 130mm for a long weekend adventure ride, but it would probably be more fair to stop putting suspension travel in the pros/cons list for a given bike just because they have a centimeter or so more or less travel than others in the same "category".
  • 1 0
 So can someone explain what thy benefit of 80 mm offset? Majority of the bike brands increasing reach while decreasing offset, here is everything vise-versa

Bike itself looks - cool, also assuming that rider did EWS stage on it, It makes it king even more cool;
  • 1 0
 A lot of people wowed then they read this post but I trully understand it. I had a Surly E.C.R. with 3.0 tyres. Bike was a fully rigid steel frame with more XC oriented geo for off road traveling. Realy capable bike. The best bike to ride manual, even with high saddle.
  • 4 0
 66° (Fork Offset/Rake: 80mm giving approx. effective HA: 63.5°)

  • 1 0
 man just a few years ago when i got back into mtb the bike that did it was an old hardtail stumpy with a blown fork. I slapped a steelie on it and that bike rallied hard. ran it singlespeed for a while. it was a hoot, but it got stolen. this bike sounds rad and I def see the appeal of this kind of bike. the good geometry would make it even easier to get red of suspension
  • 1 0
 gears? what a wuss ... go singlespeed.
Seriously, I converted my hardtail to fully rigid and rode if for a week. Completely ruined the trail riding experience. You have to be incredibly tough to ride, much less race this. There is just no front end traction. Respect!
  • 2 0
 except your hardtail was designed for suspension and you just swapped in a rigid fork. No wonder it didn't work. This thing is designed to be rigid from the outset - the geo, weight balance, the fork leg curve and offset, the ability to run a big tyre means there is plenty of traction.
  • 1 0
 Best bike check in a while, just makes me happy. Love me some steel hardtails although I prefer them with front suspension. Would be curious how much lateral flex that fork gives though?

PS. Badass bike for sure, but the rider is the true badass! DS.
  • 5 1
 My 52 y/o ankles and wrists hurt ! Wink
  • 3 1
 I like Matt's bike and his comment, "Whether I'm looking at it, riding it, or beating my mates riding their 'beer cans' and 'fantastic plastics' with it!"
  • 1 0
 I love rigid bikes- so much fun. Makes you pick different lines and keeps things interesting. I have never ridden a bike that is so upright- not sure I would like that it clearly works for him.
  • 2 0
 I don't care for the fork (the rest of the bike is great), but the Roots & Rain results page is one of the best bike race results pages I've ever seen.
  • 1 0
 I love the fork. The crown has parallel leaf springs in it for s bit of give. Genius idea.
  • 3 0
 lovely bike but what is the trend of photographing bikes with the dropper in the half way "throbbing semi" position.
  • 6 1
 To answer by way of extending the analogy: fully erect does not an accurate portrayal give, as this bike is not designed for climbs; likewise were it to be freshwater swimming limp - because this is no jump bike. More than likely the throbbing semi is an accurate portrayal of this bike which, lets face it, has probably smoked a few too many, is half a bottle of wine down, and is basically satisfied pawing away at humps of enduro track on a Friday or Saturday night.
  • 6 2
 This bike has gears. What a pussy.
  • 3 0
 Needs a fixed gear cardan shaft made of bamboo for full hipster points.
  • 2 0
 Maybe single speed next season dyu think? :-)
  • 2 0
 Man i have been dreaming of a "dry bike" and this could be it. just add avid bb7s with big rotors and a vecnum nivo, should be awesome.
  • 1 0
 I am thinking of the same thing, although I hadn't thought of calling it a dry bike! Mine will have Paul Klampers with ServoWave levers. People who use my brakes can't believe a mechanical brake works so well)))
  • 7 4
 Stunning! Plus red makes you go faster!! High on the want list...
  • 1 1
 Not to mention custom fork sticker!!
  • 3 0
 Yesss, i was advocating for this.
  • 2 0
 We listened!
  • 1 0
 Damn boi! Such a sick bike. I never thought I'd say this but I wish the frames came in boost spacing so I don't have to buy new wheels.
  • 1 0
 Check out the next model to come - The Dirt Bomb will be boost.
  • 1 0
 @tamarin08: Thanks for the info! What the difference between the Mk4 and the Dirt Bomb besides the boost spacing? I don't see much info on their website.
  • 1 0
 @WalrusRider: check out their Instagram feed @stoogecycles - there's technical drawings on there. Difference is it doesn't have a twin top tube but instead retro klunker vibe with a kinked top tube and supporting 'mid-tube' underneath. Same drop seat stays, boost spacing so room for a 29er + rear tyre and a shorter offset on the fork.
  • 1 0
 @tamarin08: you had me at 29+
  • 2 0
 That is a bike, I would really like to test-ride.... But I guess, the builder has a pretty busy winter now!
  • 5 2
 Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.
  • 5 1
 But if you want to, then by all means...
  • 3 0
 @pmhobson: oh ya totally. Just look at class 11 in Baja. They are hilarious to watch.
  • 1 0
 @sunringlerider: Ha! Thanks for that. I love it.
  • 4 0
 2020 is the new 90's.
  • 2 0
 If they make that thing in a larger frame I'd be all over that. Looks mint.
  • 4 0
 Looks like a Session
  • 1 0
 Looks like the offspring of a Peugeot LC01 city bike and the grim donut, in a nice sort of way
  • 2 0
 cool bike, its dirty little secret is that it's an awesome gravelbike, uhm...monsterx mtb of course!
  • 2 0
 I personally dig Matt's 80s inspired fashion vibe. Goes perfectly with the klunker vibe of the bike. Three thumbs up.
  • 3 0
 Mind bending fork
  • 2 1
 Illest bike ever! For sure life is too short to waist time riding a bear can or plastic!
  • 1 0
 Can someone who is more smarter than me uhhsplain how measure offset and head angle on that kind of fork?
  • 1 0
 Fun place to start:
a href="">>;
  • 2 0
 @StradaRedlands: gonna be hard to type that url
  • 1 0
 @Dogl0rd: html fail!!
  • 1 0
 Yesssss to the bike. No to the helmet-goggle combo. But then again, what do I know, I'm slow.
  • 2 0
 He'd have won his age category! Must be darn fast on any bike
  • 2 0
 I'd like to hear more about the thinking behind the 80mm fork offset...?
  • 5 1
 In a straight line (or nearly straight line) at speed, you get a similar stability and anti-OTB benefit to a slack head angle because the axle is way out in front of the grips and the wheel base is long. But low speed sharp cornering you get the quick responsiveness of a steeper xc bike, and without as much of the "flop" you get on a slack bike
  • 1 0
 @AyJayDoubleyou: Thanks for the reply. Wouldn't that argument also hold up for suspension forks as well then? In which case, why are suspension fork offsets getting shorter and not longer?
  • 2 0
 @Paco77: Because that "flop" is of benefit to cornering. Stand you bike up, hold onto the seat and lean the bike side to side, watch the handle bars "flop" to a position determined by the lean angle. thats how cornering works and why death gripping the handle bars doesn't.
  • 2 0
 @Paco77: the cynic in me says that because people will only buy a bike with a certain head angle, a shorter offset makes it sort of feel and handle like a steeper bike.
Reality is there's a lot of variables. head angle, offset, and wheelsize (because of how far the axle is above the tyre contact patch) all contribute to how the steering and handling work. Look up the definition of "trail" with regards to bike geometry, so see how they are all interlinked.
And thats before getting into how effective stem length changes how it feels to manipulate it.
This rigid bike is a rare opportunity where the manufacturer is making both the frame and the forks, so there is a bit of an opportunity to experiment beyond the normal 1 or 2 (very similar) offsets offered by the suspension fork manufacturers.
  • 2 0
 Slo-mo huck-to-flat, please.
  • 2 0
 I'll see what I can do!
  • 2 0
 For God’s sake stop saying fully rigid! It’s either rigid or not
  • 1 0
 Americans: no thanks too much pain
Brits: perfect mate
Aussies: you guys suck
  • 4 0
 you guys suck
  • 1 0
 A tightly wound spring of a bike.
  • 3 2
 Awesome. I'd love to try this thing.
  • 3 1
  • 14 15
 "My BaCk AnD aNkLeS hUrT jUsT lOoKiNg At ThIs BiKe"

With proper technique, and workout routine, you can ride a hardtail or rigid without an issue... stop being a baby
  • 4 17
flag youknowitsus (Nov 2, 2020 at 9:23) (Below Threshold)
 It is true though. Lot of idiots out there. Just not reason other than an ego flex to race a full-rigid "enduro" bike. f*ck this idiot.
  • 8 0
I ride in a varied mix of groups from the fast local xc guys to folks who regularly race enduros and do pretty well. When folks that are newer to the sport join for the more open fun rides their first exposure to more dedicated riders is not always great. They see the average $9k sworks epic or supercaliber or Hightower cc with reserve wheels these guys are riding and either instantly rule out their ability to get more involved in the sport due to cost, or equate speed with an expensive purchases and go off the deep to be later regretted when they learn more about themselves and type of riding they like. It seems unhealthy for the sport in general. See competitive riders on bikes like this Stooge is awesome. It gives hope and a sense of belonging if you are out there doing your best on an older more affordable bike to see someone like Matt slaying it on a rigid hardtail. That bike screams for SS though
  • 1 0
 @AccidentalDishing: thanks man - not sure if my knee can handle SS but like they say, never say never! ;-)
  • 3 0

I said the same thing about ss at the start of the season. Now I ride a ss 3/4 of the time and am planning SM100 on ss next year. Its addictive!
  • 2 1
 love the sticker on the fork..
  • 2 1
 I don't like rigid MTBs, but I'd love to try this one.
  • 1 1
 Not that expensive considering that you get something that makes everybody you pass scratch their heads!
  • 2 0
 I'd ride it
  • 2 3
 I would not describe any cable routing under the frame open to destruction so I would not use the word "neat". I see better options up top. Interesting fork.
  • 6 8
 Mannn... I would hate riding in the UK in winter. Or possibly anytime. Rigid bikes that look weird. Funky overpriced (mis)matched anodized components. And then the mud and cold... brrrr.
  • 14 3
 Toughen up princess
  • 7 10
 This thing is such a joke from a technological point of view... He's running a -45mm BB drop (in the 12'0 clock position) on a fully rigid which is way higher than a suss bike sagged. A tiny 445mm reach with a miniscule 72.5mm trail. Stooge claims this is to get the rider farther back on the bike, which is well know to reduce front end traction on everything other than loose sand and loam. #$%$* don't let this garbage crawl back out of 1992. I like the looks but don't pretend this bike would do anything to help a rider.
  • 8 2
 Re. your last comment, not everyone wants the help. Do you see BMXs and skateboards with rider aids? There's something about the mindset of a typical mountain biker that means they want to go and ride gnarly shit, yet want a bike to give them an experience of riding on a road. This bike looks like it'd be hilarious to ride which is what matters (to me).
  • 7 3
 445mm reach is not tiny, the head angle, 29” wheels, short stem and 780mm handlebars are proof that’s it’s not 1992.

His bike has more reach than my size large HD3.

The only thing missing from the Red Baron is a Snoopy costume picture with the rider and the bike.

P.s. The bike is rad, but the rider’s skill is radder.
  • 1 0
 Those high backsweep bars are what my wrists want!
  • 1 0
 Completely potty. Love it.
  • 1 0
 Bike Check? Now show me Huck to flat.
  • 2 0
 On it - will sort it when I can... Should be fun! :-)
  • 2 0
 @tamarin08: sir you had my curiosity ... but now you have my attention
  • 4 3
 One. Sexy. Hardtail.
  • 4 1
  • 5 4
 Absolute dream bike!
  • 4 4
 One question..... WHY???
  • 1 3
 Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should
  • 2 4
 PB really needs a POSTED IN: (Steel Bikes)
  • 4 6
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