Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

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Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby derek87 » Sat Nov 20, 2010 10:37 pm

Hey guys,

First of all,
I don't know whether it's the right place to post this here. Moderators, please feel free to move this thread to the right category if needed. Cheers.

So i have been riding my mountain bike for 3 months around the city of Melbourne, going to leisure trails like merri creek trail etc. Learning braking techniques, weight shifting etc to get ready for harder trails. Finally today i got myself up to you yangs.

Unfortunately, there was an event going on, the only track opened for public was track 13, Cressies Climb( if im not mistaken). I own a HT Scott Aspect 35, most of my components are stock except for the pedals, changed it to a DMR V12. However I noticed most bikers went down with either a DH bike or a FS bike. Well the reason i chose a DH track is because i have watched a bunch of videos of HTs doing DH tracks so that's why i gave it a go.

The ride down track 13 was AWESOME, the only problem i suffered from is, my traction, my bike basically has no traction at all when going down the track. So my question is, what would improve my ride going DH with more control?

To make this easier for everyone, i'll put up the specs of my bike. It' a budget bike, but pretty decent IMO.

Frame:
New Frame Alloy 6061 Performance geometry
Fork:
Sun tour XCR with Lockout 100mm travel
Front Derailleur:
Shimano Deore
Rear Derailleur:
Shimano Deore
Shifters:
Shimano Deore
Chain set:
Shimano FC-M442 Octalink, silver
Chain rings:
44/32/22 Teeth
Bottom Bracket:
Shimano BB-ES-25
Cassette:
Shimano CS-HG50-9 11-32 Teeth
Chain:
Shimano CN-HG53
Pedals:
Xerama SP-910-S ( changed to DMR V12 flats)
Front Brake:
Shimano BR-M486
Rear Brake:
Shimano BR-M486
Brake Levers:
Shimano BL-M486
Handlebars:
Scott Aspect OS 620mm, black, 31,8mm
Stem:
Scott Comp JD-ST57 A (OS 31,8mm)
Rims:
Alex XC-44 Disc 32H
Front Hub:
Scott Disc Team
Rear Hub:
Shimano FH-RM65-8 CL
Spokes:
15 G, stainless, black
Front Tyre:
Schwalbe Black Jack 26 x 2.1
Rear Tyre:
Schwalbe Black Jack 26 x 2.2
Seat post:
Scott Comp JD SP-47T.1 / 31.6mm

My psi on my tyres were 30 front 35 rear, and i weigh 70kg. I think it's still a lil bit on the high side? I saw some of the forumers suggested 28 front 30 rear? Maybe i'll try this next time.

I know HTs are not built for DH tracks, but it should be doable? i simply do not have the cash to spend on a DH or a decent FS bike. Just a student. After the ride today, i loved it, so i want more! My own opinion that my bike has no traction is because of my tyres and front fork is crap? maybe? What do you suggest?

This is my first time on serious tracking, hope to learn more.

Thanks guys. Looking forward for your replies.

-Derek
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by BNA » Sun Nov 21, 2010 7:37 am

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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby Nobody » Sun Nov 21, 2010 7:37 am

You are using an all-rounder tyre for downhill. I found them in the Schwalbe's clearance line:
http://www.schwalbetires.com/node/1373
Image

Maybe consider something downhill specific. Then try running them at slightly less pressure.
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby derek87 » Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:07 am

Nobody wrote:You are using an all-rounder tyre for downhill. I found them in the Schwalbe's clearance line:
http://www.schwalbetires.com/node/1373
Image

Maybe consider something downhill specific. Then try running them at slightly less pressure.


Thank you for your input, what tyres do you recommend? I noticed a lot of DH tyres are usually 2.3 inch, can my rims use them or i'll have to change my rims? I tried googling them, but couldn't find any information about them. i think they are older models.

I was thinking of replacing my current fork with a 2nd hand Rock Shox Lyrik as well, is it necessary?

Cheers
Derek.
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby Nobody » Sun Nov 21, 2010 1:07 pm

2.3" is generally considered about the limit for normal 19mm inner 23mm outer MTB rims. The Alex site doesn't appear to list your rims, so I'm assuming they are standard size. A wider rim would be more stable and there would be less stress on the rim. See below for more information.

http://www.schwalbetires.com/tech_info/ ... nsions#rim

As for specific recommendations for forks and DH tyres, you need to ask someone else. I crash enough doing general XC riding, so I don't do downhill.
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby MattyP » Mon Nov 22, 2010 11:40 am

Cressy's (track 13) isn't a dedicated DH track (unlike Bandages or Glory). Keep riding it on your HT & keep tweaking your gear & comfortable with the trail. In time & with experience you'll ride it faster & smoother. It's a great track to ride downhill. As another challenge try riding up Cressy's. Best done on a weekday. :mrgreen:

I get around the YY's on a Jamis Dragon (steel HT) & ride Maxxis Crossmark's. I'm 88kgs. I'm not as quick as others down Cressy's but I enjoy myself.

You'll find out more about mtb gear & Vic trails over at Rotorburn & bv too.

Matt
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby derek87 » Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:58 pm

Nobody wrote:2.3" is generally considered about the limit for normal 19mm inner 23mm outer MTB rims. The Alex site doesn't appear to list your rims, so I'm assuming they are standard size. A wider rim would be more stable and there would be less stress on the rim. See below for more information.

http://www.schwalbetires.com/tech_info/ ... nsions#rim

As for specific recommendations for forks and DH tyres, you need to ask someone else. I crash enough doing general XC riding, so I don't do downhill.


I see, so i still can use 2.3" on my rims, but it will not be as stable as using it on a wider rim. Hmm.. this is gonna be a hard decision. Thanks!
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby derek87 » Mon Nov 22, 2010 3:01 pm

MattyP wrote:Cressy's (track 13) isn't a dedicated DH track (unlike Bandages or Glory). Keep riding it on your HT & keep tweaking your gear & comfortable with the trail. In time & with experience you'll ride it faster & smoother. It's a great track to ride downhill. As another challenge try riding up Cressy's. Best done on a weekday. :mrgreen:

I get around the YY's on a Jamis Dragon (steel HT) & ride Maxxis Crossmark's. I'm 88kgs. I'm not as quick as others down Cressy's but I enjoy myself.

You'll find out more about mtb gear & Vic trails over at Rotorburn & bv too.

Matt


Yeap, it's a one black diamond track. Well, i am still a beginner, so this track is pretty challenging for me, especially after a small jump, other than that, i think i can handle pretty well, just not as quick as the others. At the end of the day, the most important thing is i enjoyed myself riding and not crashing. HAHA...

Are Maxxis Crossmark's good? what do you feel about them? and what inch do you run on your bike?

Thanks for suggesting the other two great sites, appreciate it.
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby trailgumby » Mon Nov 22, 2010 9:17 pm

Crossmarks are good, but are more for hardpack. I find them a bit sketchy and not confidence inspiring for the typical loose / sandy / loose over hardpack trails in my area (northern Sydney).

You might want to consider a Maxxis Ignitor for the front, in 2.35 and a Maxxis Larsen TT 2.0 for the rear. This is what I've been running and I've found hem to be an excellent all-round combo. Ignitors are excellent on the front - they don;t move around much at all - very grippy. Just be aware that when they let go, you don't get a lot of warning. Up until that point though, the outright grip is excellent and I've been able to make a "save" each time. I was talking through alternatives with my LBS, and when I asked about how each compares to the Ignitor, the commetn was "It'll move around more."

I'm about to try a Scwhalbe Nobby Nic 2.25" front teamed with a 2.1" Racing Ralph on the rear, whcih I've heard good things about. Will let you know.
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby MattyP » Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:35 am

derek87 wrote:
MattyP wrote:Cressy's (track 13) isn't a dedicated DH track (unlike Bandages or Glory). Keep riding it on your HT & keep tweaking your gear & comfortable with the trail. In time & with experience you'll ride it faster & smoother. It's a great track to ride downhill. As another challenge try riding up Cressy's. Best done on a weekday. :mrgreen:

I get around the YY's on a Jamis Dragon (steel HT) & ride Maxxis Crossmark's. I'm 88kgs. I'm not as quick as others down Cressy's but I enjoy myself.

You'll find out more about mtb gear & Vic trails over at Rotorburn & bv too.

Matt


Yeap, it's a one black diamond track. Well, i am still a beginner, so this track is pretty challenging for me, especially after a small jump, other than that, i think i can handle pretty well, just not as quick as the others. At the end of the day, the most important thing is i enjoyed myself riding and not crashing. HAHA...

Are Maxxis Crossmark's good? what do you feel about them? and what inch do you run on your bike?

Thanks for suggesting the other two great sites, appreciate it.


I've been riding 2.1 Crossmark at the YY's since forever & I find them to be ideal for my riding & the terrain out there. I've also ridden on them at Forrest, Lysterfield & Woodend. Only time I haven't liked the Crossmark's was in mud at Lysty. Not a good mud tyre, but a good all rounder. YY's rarely get muddy & that's where I ride the most so Crossmark's for me. One day I might experiment with front & rear - one day ...
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby derek87 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 12:09 pm

trailgumby wrote:Crossmarks are good, but are more for hardpack. I find them a bit sketchy and not confidence inspiring for the typical loose / sandy / loose over hardpack trails in my area (northern Sydney).

You might want to consider a Maxxis Ignitor for the front, in 2.35 and a Maxxis Larsen TT 2.0 for the rear. This is what I've been running and I've found hem to be an excellent all-round combo. Ignitors are excellent on the front - they don;t move around much at all - very grippy. Just be aware that when they let go, you don't get a lot of warning. Up until that point though, the outright grip is excellent and I've been able to make a "save" each time. I was talking through alternatives with my LBS, and when I asked about how each compares to the Ignitor, the commetn was "It'll move around more."

I'm about to try a Scwhalbe Nobby Nic 2.25" front teamed with a 2.1" Racing Ralph on the rear, whcih I've heard good things about. Will let you know.


Nice, thanks for that. I'll try that. mind if i ask why 2.0 for larsen and not 2.1?

P/s. Thank Matty for your input.

Another question i have in mind is, i was thinking of replacing my current shocks to rock shox lyrik. the travel length is 115mm to 160mm. Will this put a lot of pressure on my frame if i use it at 115mm?

Cheers.
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby Alistair » Wed Nov 24, 2010 12:31 pm

That wouldn't end up pretty unless you left it at 115mm, which would probably be ok - the manafacturer should supply specs for the recommended fork travel though. You will void your warranty going outside those, and it will ride like a pig
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby derek87 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 3:18 pm

Alistair wrote:That wouldn't end up pretty unless you left it at 115mm, which would probably be ok - the manafacturer should supply specs for the recommended fork travel though. You will void your warranty going outside those, and it will ride like a pig


What do you mean by it will ride like a pig? You mean slow?
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby Alistair » Thu Nov 25, 2010 10:00 am

A longer fork will slow the steering and make it harder to climb. It will be more assured going downhill, but it won't suit cross country riding.

There are a lot of nice secondhand 100mm forks around. I would just get one of them, or leave it alone. Three months isn't long - you will get more confident with time in the saddle. It is all about balance and feel and you can't expect that to come in a hurry.

Head down to Forrest next time you want to go for a ride. It is 60+kms of groomed XC trails and probably more suitable for a relative newbie than the You Yangs
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Re: Hardtails at You Yangs. Need advice.

Postby Bentnose » Sun Nov 28, 2010 8:18 am

I've ridden every track (except the actual downhill bike only track) at the You Yangs with a hard tail, 2.0 Michelin XC A/T tyres and 80mm forks with no issues. Maybe a little more practice with technique is needed. You've got to be carefull with tyre sizes, my Mavic rims say maximum tyre size 2.1".As previously stated putting a real long travel fork on a bike not designed for it will stuff up the handling and the extra leaverage may cause your head tube to break. Don't be intimidated by the numerous people wizzing down the hills on full suspension bikes, a hardtail will do fine for XC. I'd definately swap out those tyres, that should make a difference, they're more of a commuter tyre, get some genuine XC race tyres maybe Schwalbe Racing Ralphs or what I have, I've been using Kenda Small Block 8's as well though they are dry conditions only, so the Michelins will be on today..

I'll be heading out to the You Yangs today, there is an MTBO event on, not sure of this weather though.
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