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Old 12-29-08, 05:38 PM   #1
agarose2000
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2% bike, 98% rider - true for MTB?

Roadies pretty much agree with small variations, that race performance on the roadbike is something along the lines ot 2% bike/parts, 98% rider, or figures pretty close to that spec. So the guys who are beating you on the wknd on their $5000 bikes will likely beat you on a $500 roadbike with starter parts. Seems true in my experience, and seeing the range of cyclists who pass me.

I was wondering if this was true for MTB as well, or if the bike matters more? I'm guessing it would, especially for downhill dominant races, but I wanted to hear from those who have more experience than my noobness. (Ulterior motive: intending to upgrade my steel 35lb Gary Fisher, but hesitating to pull the trigger if it won't improve my riding much.)
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Old 12-29-08, 06:35 PM   #2
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Someone said "it isn't the bike , its the rider". Well they never rode my Honda Trail Pilot 44lb department store special on some technical single track.
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Old 12-29-08, 06:47 PM   #3
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depends- you can't freeride or downhill safely or efficiently on a crappy bike or one that isn't made to do so.

but you might get beaten on a cross country trail by a guy on a 40 pound bike
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Old 12-29-08, 07:09 PM   #4
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I'd say my mountain biking is about the ride itself, not whether anyone is ahead or behind me or what bike they're riding...ride what you want on what you want when you want, just enjoy it and don't worry about racer boys.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:16 PM   #5
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you gotta reserve a percentage for the reefer.
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Old 12-29-08, 07:57 PM   #6
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you gotta reserve a percentage for the reefer.
ive heard stories of it making people ride faster/better, but whenever i ride w/ someone who just smoked they go wayyyyy slow
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Old 12-29-08, 09:44 PM   #7
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mountain bikes are more terrain-specific. a heavy built bike would suck on smooth single track, with it's huge knobby tires and heavy FS, compared to a lightweight HT with slim tires.
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Old 12-29-08, 10:00 PM   #8
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mountain bikes are more terrain-specific. a heavy built bike would suck on smooth single track, with it's huge knobby tires and heavy FS, compared to a lightweight HT with slim tires.
Zan don't you run 2.3 tires on the street??
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Old 12-29-08, 10:03 PM   #9
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The last MTB race I entered in 1994, I was one of maybe 3 rigid riders. I'd fly by half the field on the climb and get blown away by most of them on the downhill...

I guess the 2%/98% works, but bikes have to be approximately appropriate. I'm sure any pro on $800 XC hardtail could kill me on a $3000 XC hardtail.
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Old 12-29-08, 10:05 PM   #10
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Mine is 85% bike, 5% rider, and 10% belly using gravity by keeping my center of balance in check like a gyroscope.
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Old 12-29-08, 10:30 PM   #11
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when i switched from my 31.5 lb mtb to a 21.4 lb mtb i knocked 8 minutes off of my 4.1 mile hill climb. if a mtb race is 20 miles long that could be 40 minutes savings. is it worth it ?
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Old 12-29-08, 10:32 PM   #12
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Mine is 85% bike, 5% rider, and 10% belly using gravity by keeping my center of balance in check like a gyroscope.
So you're always 110%?

EDIT- Ignore me, I suck at math.
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Old 12-29-08, 10:37 PM   #13
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So you're always 110%?

EDIT- Ignore me, I suck at math.
Oh yeah...I left out the 10% big freakin' nutz
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Old 12-29-08, 11:37 PM   #14
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ive heard stories of it making people ride faster/better, but whenever i ride w/ someone who just smoked they go wayyyyy slow
You've never hung out with a lot of top mt bike racers then...
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Old 12-30-08, 12:10 AM   #15
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I lost a race by a 2% margin. So I went out and bought a bike 4% faster.
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Old 12-30-08, 06:27 AM   #16
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I would say 2% bike and 98% rider is pretty accurate, especially in beginner classes and the lower half of sport classes. Think of it like this, if you were to take a Ferrari and a Yugo and swap their engines, who would win a drag race? The car/bike with the bigger engine regardless of the chassis. However, when you have 2 evenly matched engines such as you'll find in the upper levels of racing the better chassis/bike becomes pretty relevant.
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Old 12-30-08, 06:40 AM   #17
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I would say it holds true

obviously some of it is more equipment dependent depending on the type of riding your doing IE a squishy bike should help you more on a dh trail and be a hinderence on smooth single track

but I;ve met guys would cna ruide their dh bik as well as some xc guys up a trail
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Old 12-30-08, 10:01 AM   #18
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I'd actually say that in MTBing, the bike matters more than in road biking. It seems like it's maybe 4-5% in MTBing.
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Old 12-30-08, 11:28 AM   #19
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It works out to a degree but I'd like to see anyone win an XC race at any level using my >50 supermarket squishy.
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Old 12-30-08, 11:57 AM   #20
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Your formula may work out within a mountain biking discipline. Comparing across different types of riding, the bike will potentially play a greater role.
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Old 12-30-08, 12:36 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by bikinfool View Post
I'd say my mountain biking is about the ride itself, not whether anyone is ahead or behind me or what bike they're riding...ride what you want on what you want when you want, just enjoy it and don't worry about racer boys.
Amen
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Old 12-30-08, 01:14 PM   #22
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^^^
While I understand these sentiments, I think the OP was asking in relation to racing, in which case the context is a little different than the "I ride to enjoy nature and ****" context.
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Old 12-30-08, 01:31 PM   #23
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Your formula may work out within a mountain biking discipline. Comparing across different types of riding, the bike will potentially play a greater role.
I agree with this. I also think the age of the equipment matters a bit. A higher percentage goes to the bike if you compare a full rigid with friction shifters to a front susp. hardtail with index shifting.

I think this 2% bike 98% rider does not hold true for mtb racing without a long list of 'ifs'.
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Old 12-30-08, 03:02 PM   #24
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Zan don't you run 2.3 tires on the street??
2.35", actually.

no one said i was going to win any races with my bike running like that!
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Old 12-30-08, 03:04 PM   #25
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25 bike/75 rider
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