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Old 08-15-06, 11:42 AM   #1
ScareyH22A
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Anyone try a Santa Cruz bike w/VPP?

How is it compared to maybe a Specialized Brain Fade shock or even a hardtail?
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Old 08-15-06, 11:49 AM   #2
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her VPP is my wife's favourite bike...her Kona Hardtail is now for sale and the problem with The Brain is that it needs that first hit to release it...sometimes works, sometimes not

she flies on this bike...i have a tough time keeping up with her sometimes, it climbs like a goat with no peddle bob, flys through the roots and rock gardens that we ride up here, but most important, it gave her the confidence to do the sketchy trails she wouldn't even try before.

My ICT may be a bit better, but not by much
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Old 08-15-06, 11:51 AM   #3
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When you say no pedal bob.. i know it's impossible to have absolutely no pedal bob of a FS but is it that good?
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Old 08-15-06, 12:04 PM   #4
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my ICT design has absolutley no peddle bob with 5.8" rear travel...my wife has a bit but she usually keeps her preload at about 185lb which makes it a bit stiffer

but you're right, you see many full sussers that look like pogo sticks when they climb...the Trek Fuel is a good example and this is why they have that remote rear lockout on their higher end models.

Bikes are probably the most efficient means of transferring peddling energy into forward motion, however you lose a lot of it if you waste it on the energy needed to "bob"...thats why most XC racers lock out their fork as well

found a pic of mine:
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Old 08-15-06, 12:11 PM   #5
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With the air pressure higher than average and w/the VPP suspension design, how much bob are we talking about?
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Old 08-15-06, 12:12 PM   #6
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I've ridden a couple of Intense VPP's and only one SC BLUR. The trick of VPP is that if the suspension set-up isn't right for you, it will be a horrible experience.

My first ride on a VPP was set-up for a rider half my weight. I was unimpressed to the extreme. I then got the sag correct and tried again and was flying! Set-up is getting crucial to new designs. If you like to tinker, a VPP is a good bike. If you prefer to "set it and forget it" try a different bike.
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Old 08-15-06, 12:14 PM   #7
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By tinker, what do you mean? Trying different air pressure on the shock?
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Old 08-15-06, 12:15 PM   #8
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Yes! Trying a setting, going for ride, trying a bit more comparing the difference. Taking some out, see what happens...etc.
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Old 08-15-06, 12:16 PM   #9
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with the preload at 185lb, she has about a half inch of sag and a "cushion" of about another half inch on flat trails...you notice the difference when climbing as the VPP design "digs in" and seems to accelerate forward rather than bounce...her Fuji Panic Pro DJ and Kona hardtail didn't come close to what this bike can do, and she's not only faster but can ride 5X longer without even breathing hard
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Old 08-15-06, 12:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by a2psyklnut
Yes! Trying a setting, going for ride, trying a bit more comparing the difference. Taking some out, see what happens...etc.
if I can expand a bit...it really is a "set it and forget it" bike, but she adjusts to the terrain...she keeps it firmer on the faster clay and rocky terrain, a little softer on the easier, slower trails...very stiff, especially the fork, on sandy trails...but this is normal for most bikes anyway

what most people forget is that you lose about 10lb everytime you check the pressure...its sucked into the pump...if you check...you have to replace
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Old 08-15-06, 12:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jm01
with the preload at 185lb, she has about a half inch of sag and a "cushion" of about another half inch on flat trails...you notice the difference when climbing as the VPP design "digs in" and seems to accelerate forward rather than bounce...her Fuji Panic Pro DJ and Kona hardtail didn't come close to what this bike can do, and she's not only faster but can ride 5X longer without even breathing hard
That's good to know. Thank you. I'm deciding on picking up a Heckler soon or save and buy a Blur LT for days when we mix a bunch of downhills with our climbs.

I currently ride a Trek 8500 HT and own a mid 90's Giant FS junk. And I never wanted another HT again until the Specialized Brain Fade caught my eye, then the VPP stuff.

I agree, I don't like the Brain Fade due to the 1st hit deal. And I haven't had a chance to check out any of the Santa Cruz's yet but hopefully I will be by this Sunday where either I'll buy the Heckler or with your input, save up for a VPP bike.
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Old 08-15-06, 12:26 PM   #12
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just a quick note...if you're thinking of a Blur LT, an XC/AM bike...check out the Blur 4X...its rated as a DJ, XC, AM, and FR bike, but build it as an XC ride...it may suit your style better
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Old 08-15-06, 12:28 PM   #13
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BTW, do you ride a Ellsworth w/ICT? Which one? and hows the bob compared to her VPP?
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Old 08-15-06, 12:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScareyH22A
BTW, do you ride a Ellsworth w/ICT? Which one? and hows the bob compared to her VPP?
That's my Id...discontinued in 2006 and replaced by the Epiphany...essentially the same but with a 70degree head angle (Id has 69 which is perfect for the technical singletrack we ride) and a lower standover (a good idea, the Id is very high at 31")

http://www.ellsworthbikes.com/bikes/id/index.cfm

http://www.ellsworthbikes.com/bikes/epiphany/index.cfm

The Id has no rear bob (really), I've set it up with a 7.875x2.25 shock for 5.8" of travel (the Epiphany has 5.25"), and my fork has a lock out for those steep climbs

The wife's Blur does have a bit of peddlebob, but not serious enough to need a rear lockout...she has a Fox 130mm Talas Float RLC fork which also has a lockout

http://santacruzbikes.com/blur4x/

Ellsworth is now licensing ICT to Turner and maybe some others...a great design, but I'm not sure that its worth the premium when compared to the Blur
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Old 08-15-06, 02:29 PM   #15
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I don't like the VPP but thats just me. I like the Heckler with a 5th coil.
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Old 08-15-06, 02:46 PM   #16
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I don't like the VPP but thats just me. I like the Heckler with a 5th coil.
Yep...its a nice ride, but a bit much more my wife...she's more of the both-wheels-on-ground type of rider and prefers open, wider singletrack, and thinks that tricks are for kids

I had a medium Heckler for a short while...switched to the Id when a medium frame finally showed up at the LBS
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Old 08-15-06, 05:54 PM   #17
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Oh great. Just spoke to a LBS and they said that Santa Cruz's Heckler D for $1580 no longer exists because Santa Cruz is gonna change the specs and prices for '07. The Santa Cruz sales rep is coming down to his shop tomorrow to explain things better. The LBS sounds very confused right now lol. They said they have a bunch of parts and don't know what to do with them right now because of the transition. Oh wells.. I guess I find out more by the end of tomorrow. Hopefully the Santa Cruz sales rep doesn't flake and makes his rounds tomorrow.

That's all assuming I even buy the Heckler. I really want a VPP bike or even better, a Ellsworth bike lol but even if I want more info on the VPP's, I'm sure the transition is gonna screw things up w/parts and prices too. Just gonna have to wait.
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Old 08-15-06, 09:37 PM   #18
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I've had the opportunity to watch a lot of people on VPP, Horst-link and faux-bar bikes on XC climbs lately. The Blurs really do have to be set up correctly, or you will get some bob. The Nomad also has some bob, but no more than the Blur. The faux bar bikes will bob less with increased shock pressure, but it doesn't go away entirely. The Horst bikes [i.e. Titus Racer-X] bob less than the VPP, but only just. Of course, hardtails bob the least.

When all is said and done, suspension setup is incredibly important. If you like to run a bit on the soft side, expect some bob unless you spin like a record. YMMV
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Old 08-16-06, 07:54 AM   #19
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I can say my SC VP-free pedals like a tank....

... unless you compare it to the other bikes I've ridden in the same weight and travel class, in which case it rides light as a feather.

Well, maybe one of the heavier types of feather.
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Old 08-16-06, 04:28 PM   #20
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I have recently purchased an '06 Intense Spider VPP with a Fox RP3 shock. I am comming of of an old Manitou Hard Tail, which was very stiff. The Spider feels almost identical except it climbs much better. I love it. VPP is THE way. I cannot speak of the Santa Cruz but I bet it is solid.
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