An in-depth look at Greg Watts' Mongoose Fireball that will be taking on Dual Slalom and Dual Speed and Style in Rotorua.( Photos: 10 )
Exhibitors came from around the world to showcase their work. Meet the builders and check out some of the bikes that took top honors.( Photos: 27 )
Pivot Cycles have been working on a 29er downhill bike that you may have seen Eddie Master racing on a mule recently. Check out a teaser from Pivot Cycles.
Shrouded in secrecy, we recently flew to South Africa to check out a new bike from Santa Cruz. We were expecting a new Hightower LT, but what we discovered was a different animal entirely. It’s time to find out if the new Santa Cruz Megatower is – like it name suggests – mega? Santa Cruz’s new 13.86 kg Megatower is a hard-charging 160 mm 29er with speed and composure at its heart We would loved to have been a fly on the wall at the meeting to name Santa Cruz’s latest 160mm 29er. “It’s like a Hightower, but way harder hitting, what should we call it?” “The Super-tower, the Higher-tower?” “What about calling it the Megatower, haha?.” “Hahaha” “Hold on…get me a pen”. The new Megatower sits with the Nomad at the gravity end of Santa Cruz’s lineup, targeted at racers, bike park enthusiasts and hardcore shredders. As beautiful as they are expensive, the Californian bike brand knows how to get their fans juices flowing. We had expected to be presented with a new Hightower LT, but the new Santa Cruz Megatower shares more of its DNA with the Nomad and V10 DH beast. With the new lower-link driven VPP suspension platform, 160 mm of travel and 29 inch wheels it’s a big bike in anyone’s books, but can the Megatower still be versatile? Using the new lower-link driven VPP suspension system, Santa Cruz have created a versatile monster in the Megatower, happy to pedal all day, before pushing your eyeballs inside out on the descents Geometry of the Santa Cruz Megatower Compared to the Hightower LT, the new Megatower takes a big step in bringing its vital statistics in line with the current crop of hard hitting bikes. In size large, the reach is 470 mm (In Hi setting, 24 mm longer than the equivalent Hightower), also compared to the Hightower the seat tube angle has steepened a whopping 2.6° to 76.3° (Hi setting), and the adjustable chainstays of the Megatower allow for either 436 or 446 mm. The slacker head angle and longer reach of the Megatower has resulted in a front centre that is 41 mm longer than the equivalent sized Hightower LT, a huge jump for the californian brand. The Santa Cruz Megatower will be available in 5 sizes, S,M,L,XL and XXL, in both the affordable but slightly heavier C carbon, and the more expensive but lighter high-grade CC carbon. The Megatower can accept a full water bottle and has a lifetime warranty on the frames and RESERVE wheels. Size S M L XL XXL Seat tube 380 mm 405 mm 430 mm 460 mm 500 mm Top tube 568 mm 597 mm 620 mm 648 mm 682 mm Head tube 90 mm 100 mm 110 mm 130 mm 155 mm Head angle 64.7° 64.7° 64.7° 64.7° 64.7° Seat angle 76.5° 76.4° 76.3° 76.0° 75.8° Chainstay 436-446 mm 436-446 mm 436-446 mm 436-446 mm 436-446 mm BB Height 340 mm 340 mm 340 mm 340 mm 340 mm Wheelbase 1,179-1,189 mm 1,208-1,218 mm 1,232-1,242 mm 1,260-1,270 mm 1,296-1,306 mm Reach 422 mm 447 mm 467 mm 487 mm 512 mm Stack 609 mm 618 mm 627 mm 645 mm 668 mm Flip Chips For Versatility In the new Santa Cruz Megatower, two flip-chips give you total control over the bikes geometry, the flip chip in the lower link gives a Hi and Lo setting, dropping the bottom bracket 3.5 mm and slackening the head angle and seat angle 0.3, useful if you want to run a longer fork). This flip-chip also adjusts shock rate, with a more progressive leverage rate in the Lo setting for more bottom out resistance. A flip-chip at the rear axle gives 10 mm of chainstay adjustment from 436 – 446 (in Lo), though you need to fit a different dropout (supplied). The rear flip chip allows the wheelbase and chainstay to be increased (or decreased) 10 mm. A new dropout and brake mount is needed but is supplied with the bike. The flip chip at the shock mount adjusts reach, stack, head tube angle, seat tube angle, standover and BB height, as well as shock leverage rate between two settings, Hi and Lo Lower-Link Driven VPP Suspension system After riding the new Nomad and Bronson it’s no surprise to see Santa Cruz has integrated their excellent lower-link driven VPP suspension layout into the gravity-focused Megatower. The rear kinematic now uses the same progressive leverage rate as the Nomad and can also be made more progressive with the Flip-Chip in the Lo setting, very different to the regressive – linear – progressive curve of the Hightower LT. On the trail, running 30% SAG, this gives a very predictable ride, composed and confident. Anti-squat sits close to 100% at SAG and can be felt via the stable pedalling action. Where we were most impressed is with the mid-stroke support, riding fast flow-trails the Megatower is very easy to pump, without the laziness and wallowing that can plague long travel bikes. As soon as the trail opens up and the hits get bigger, the Megatower dishes out its travel like a boss, eating through rocks without fuss, as expected from a suspension system pioneered in the mighty V10 DH machine. We found the ribbed chainstay protector extremely quiet in use The shock fender is well made and keeps the worst of the trail debris from damaging your shock The new 76° seat angle puts you in a very efficient position, ensuring the Megatower climbs as well as it’s lighter and shorter-legged stablemates (but we still slammed our saddle to maximise the position). Build Quality Anyone who had spent time spinning spanners in a bike shop will know that even though most bikes ride very well now, not all are created equally. Santa Cruz have always held the mantle of being the nicest bikes to work on and own, with high-quality hardware, grease ports, and unquestioned build quality. The front-triangle retains the continuous cable routing tubes to ease the pain of internal cable routing, and the rear triangle is now easier to thread. Santa Cruz also offers a lifetime warranty on their frames, RESERVE carbon wheels and bearings. A shuttle guard sits under the downtube, perfect if you have a matching Toyota Tacoma pickup truck. A nice touch from Santa Cruz as this bike should see some time on the shuttles. The post First Ride Review: Santa Cruz Megatower 29 appeared first on ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine.
Check out the Stereo 150 C:68 Action Team 29 that Greg Callaghan, Zakarias Johansen, Sofia Wiedenroth and Gusti Wildhaber will be riding in 2019( Photos: 6 )
Yamaha Bicycles officially launches its electric pedal-assist gravel e-bike, the Wabash, today, and it’s in stores as of today. We weren’t allowed to talk about it until today, but we’ve had the bike for several weeks, and have already done a full review for the June, 2019 issue. It’s a Class 1 pedal-assist bike, which means the Yamaha PWSeries SE motor provides assistance up to 20 mph. They chose the PWSeries SE motor over the PW-X, since the bike will likely spend more of its time on-road than off, and the SE motor offers smoother power delivery. It’s rated at 250W nominal, maxing out at 500W peak. It can provide support at up to 20 mph and cadence up to 110 rpm. Power delivery feels very natural, with no surges, just a steady assistance at any level. With their speed sensor located in the rear dropout, it responds immediately to any forward pedcaling movement and activates the power support system. “The Wabash brings together the biggest growth segment in cycling – e-Bikes – with one of the hottest trends in cycling – gravel – and the original innovator and one of the global leaders in e-Bikes – Yamaha,” said Rob Trester, who leads the Yamaha Power Assist Bicycle group in the U.S. “Bringing Yamaha’s experience, quality and reliability to this type of adventure bike will give riders both the performance and the peace-of-mind that they’re on the best gravel e-Bike out there.” BEHIND BARS The Wabash features flared handlebars at the bottom of the drop to provide more stability, confidence and versatility on roads and trails. The wider drop also allows for easier incorporation of handlebar packs for bike-packing adventure trips. Padded cork tape takes out some of the shocks off-road, which is helpful on a bike with no suspension. Spec’d drivetrain is a SRAM Apex 1×11 system with SRAM X-Sync chainring configuration for precise shifting on rough terraion and a strong interface between the chainring to keep the chain secure on bumpy terrain. We never once had the chain pop off on a ride. Speaking of the chain, it’s a KMC X11e, e-bike-specific chain, selected for long life. The Maxxis Speed Terrane tires offer incredible grip, yet low rolling resistance. The center has light knobs, while the outside has more aggressive knobs for serious grip when cornering. We took the bike through every surface imaginable, from pavement to gravel to mud to rocky streams to deep, damp sand and the tires never faltered. Honestly, we were shocked at how well they gripped. They slipped only once, and that was taking off on wet mud. And with all the mud we went through, they didn’t fling much mud on us or the bike! They chose 700x33C tires for the right combination of size and grip, and we think it was spot-on. The bike has bosses to attach fenders and even a rack, and tires can be fitted up to 40C. Wheels have 12mm thru-axles, and the rims have brass nipples and eyelets to handle the stresses of riding off-road for years. POWER The battery is a 500Wh external Yamaha battery. It provided more than enough for a day of riding through truly challenging terrain, with lots of climbing, heavy assist levels through the mud and sand, and still more than half a battery left after 12 miles. We weren’t sparing on the power, either. There’s Eco+, Eco, Standard and High, and we spent most of the time in Standard, jumping in to High for harder sections, and an occasional drop into Eco. Eco+ barely overcomes the weight of the bike. There’s an LED headlamp that’s included on the front of the bike. It’s definitely good enough to be seen, even in daylight. You can turn on the light via the display, which is located above and in front of the stem. It’s the regular, ruggedized display, with easy-to-read speedometer, trip distance, range, cadence and odometer. It has a color LED that changes based on power assist level, so you don’t even have to look at the display to know what power level you are in. Cable routing is internal, but there is an external mount on the top tube for running a dropper post cable, and cabling can be run for an internal dropper. The bike is available in small, medium and large sizes, and they stair-step the stack and reach of the geometry to allow for every rider to have the same feel and handling, allowing for a more precise fit to the rider. It’s avalable in any color you want, as long as that color is Latte. We had a blast on the Wabash. It is a sort of Jack-of-all-trades, a single bike that you can ride on-road or off, a great way to commute to work and explore on your way home, or just go out and have fun riding anywhere. Price is $3499, which is really good for the quality of this bike, which by the way is backed by a 3-year warranty on the drive unit, battery and frame. Check out our full review in the June 2019 issue! SPECS YAMAHA WABASH MSRP: $ 3499 Motor: Yamaha PWSeries SE Battery: Yamaha 500Wh, 36V Lithium ion Charge Time: 4 hours Top Speed: 20 mph (with assist) Range: 30-50 miles (tested) Drive: SRAM Apex 1 Brakes: SRAM Apex Hydraulic, 160mm rotors Controls: Yamaha Fork: One-piece aluminum, 12x100mm Thru-axle, fender compatible, internal brake hose routing. Frame: Yamaha hydroformed aluminum, Tires: Maxxis Speed Terrane, 700x33c TR EXO Weight: 42.3 lbs (Large) Color Choice: Latte Sizes: S/M/L Website: www.yamahabicycles.com The post YAMAHA WABASH OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCED appeared first on Electric Bike Action.