I designed and built the bike I ride most often, a progressive SS Ti hardtail. I'll be teaching Bike Design and Fabrication at University of Arkansas beginning Fall 2024 I love riding a wide variety of trails, ranging from XC on my SS to steep and technical enduro tracks… but my favorite trails offer up a lot of technical climbing and descending. I’m the Lead Designer for a Bike Rack company called PutUp USA and the Director of Fabrication Labs for the U. of Arkansas School of Art.

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basic-ti-hardtail mikekazimer's article
Mar 19, 2024 at 10:37
Mar 19, 2024
Review: Yeti's Back in the XC Game With the 2024 ASR
I have the barkeeper stem on my Epic Evo… It’s definitely my favorite stem for this type of bike… super light and elegant. Great spec choice Yeti :)
basic-ti-hardtail seb-stott's article
Mar 17, 2024 at 12:58
Mar 17, 2024
Pinkbike Poll: Do You Use Your Climb Switch?
Great point Also in areas with undulating terrain I find bikes with more efficient suspension designs (like DW) work better for me. (As well as a bit less travel, which also reduces need for the lockout)
basic-ti-hardtail dariodigiulio's article
Mar 12, 2024 at 12:43
Mar 12, 2024
First Ride: 2024 Specialized Epic EVO 8
I wonder if, perhaps just taking that lovely Fox34 Grip2 and lowering it back to 120 might be the move? It sounds like the ‘feel’ of the Float Shock and Grip2 damper are desirable… and the lack of lockouts may appeal so some (myself included) But the geometry change created by the extra fork travel doesn’t feel as balanced. Seems like this burlier, nicer fork set to 120mm might just be the ticket… And that’s a really easy change to make.
basic-ti-hardtail dariodigiulio's article
Mar 12, 2024 at 11:50
Mar 12, 2024
Review: Specialized’s New Epic 8 - All the Speed You Need
It looks like they increased dropper post insertion depth too - as well as making the STA steeper and HTA a little slacker. Yeah, this looks like a great bike. I have a 2020 Epic Evo that I’ve setup with 130mm fork and Cane Creek DB-inline 190x42.5 shock. It’s a wonderful bike, and my only (very minor) complaints are all addressed in this update. Plus there’s storage in the frame with no weight penalty. :)
basic-ti-hardtail mattbeer's article
Mar 1, 2024 at 11:31
Mar 1, 2024
First Ride: Revel Rascal V2
@cpobanz: I had a similar first reaction… but I’m genuinely interested > what kind of ‘innovation’ would help justify the price? I would also love to support Revel, they’re a cool small company with a really fantastic suspension design. And some of the nicest looking frames in the business IMO. Can a bike be so good at being ‘normal’ that it’s exceptional? (The market is also really screwy right now - big companies like Specialized can drop prices and clear inventory and weather the storm, and I don’t see a way for small companies like Revel to compete with those discounts… so folks who want small brands to exist may just have to spend more to make that happen) __ I’ll add my list of requests here for reference: 1- a few basic geometry adjustments… my top request being a press in headset to allow for an angleset. Neutral HA at 65 with option to go 64 or 66. Second request would be adjustment to chainstay length and BB drop, which could also allow a mullet configuration. 2- clever frame storage- either in the frame or at a minimum some mounting points. 3- lighter weight… within reason. This is not a pure XC bike and a stout frame can really improve the feel and durability of a bike. But I’d be more drawn to this bike if it was 1-2lbs lighter, all else being equal. 4- cleaner cable routing at the BB area… but at least it doesn’t do the headset crimes. 5- ST angle still feels about 1 degree too slack since it’s measured at the stack point and not actual saddle height. I have long legs… this might not be an issue for most. They did improve the difference between actual and effective STA which I appreciate.
basic-ti-hardtail dariodigiulio's article
Feb 28, 2024 at 10:30
Feb 28, 2024
basic-ti-hardtail dariodigiulio's article
Feb 28, 2024 at 10:27
Feb 28, 2024
Review: 2024 Norco Optic - High Pivot, Short Travel
HOW ON EARTH is the SHIRT Dario is wearing in the review video not the key point of discussion here?? High pivot, downcountry, missing-country, idler drag, weight weenie, blah blah blah. LETS FOCUS ON THE SHIRT
basic-ti-hardtail mattbeer's article
Feb 27, 2024 at 17:54
Feb 27, 2024
Spotted: Did Specialized Just Soft-Launch a New Epic?

@iadorjan23: Mine kept working its way out on the first few rides. Now it stays put with no issues. Bummed to see the move to thru the bearing headset routing, but as mentioned here… it might not be a whole lot worse. It will be interesting to see if the rumored longer travel Epic model gets this too. The one other thing I was wishing for was longer dropper insertion - it’s hard to tell whether that has been improved.
basic-ti-hardtail mattbeer's article
Feb 26, 2024 at 16:02
Feb 26, 2024
Spotted: Did Specialized Just Soft-Launch a New Epic?

This swat box linked below might be as close as you get… and it’s not a bad solution. In frame storage adds weight, and the folks competing on these frames don’t want any extra weight. But I agree… as a mostly non-racer with an Epic Evo, I would use this feature if I had it.
basic-ti-hardtail jessiemaymorgan's article
Feb 23, 2024 at 11:16
Feb 23, 2024
First Look: DMR's Trailstar Titanium Hardtail
It's not really a fair comparison- could I say 'apples and Oranges" [sorry] Titanium is lovely to weld, it flows very nicely and it's comparatively 'easy' to get nice looking welds. Aluminum is a whole other beast. That is part of the Orange aesthetic, and not everyone is going to love it. Look at Neko's Frameworks bikes, or Nicolai if you want a more appropriate comparison to boutique allow frames built by some of the best.
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