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MTB - Hybrid Confusion

Old 10-31-11, 10:48 AM
  #1  
SlimRider
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MTB - Hybrid Confusion

Hey there guys!

I'm experiencing some kinda conceptual confusion here that I think you guys, the experts, just might be able to clarify.

Back in the early Marin County days of MTN biking at Mt. Tamalpais, there were many types of MTN bikes being featured. I mean you had everything from road bikes with fat tires to cruisers with balloon tires.

However these days, we are fundamentally restricted to only two types of MTN bikes. We either have a Hardtail or a Full suspension MTB. A Hardtail implies that your MTB has front fork suspension. Alright then, so what about a MTB with no suspension at all?
Do you call that a MTB?...Or, do you call that a hybrid?

I mean, when you look at a Surly Ogre or a Salsa Vaya, just what do you call them?

........ What is it?
The Surly Ogre

I mean, what's the difference between a rigid MTB and a hybrid with thick knobbie tires?

..... What is it?
The Schwinn Searcher

- Slim

PS.



Here's a model of the first mass-produced mountain bike manufactured here in the U.S. It's called the Stumpjumper, and it was made by Specialized. Kinda looks more like a road bike, if you'd ask me!
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Schwinn-HybridSEACO_GRY_6.jpg (39.9 KB, 14 views)
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Last edited by SlimRider; 11-01-11 at 07:55 AM.
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Old 10-31-11, 12:18 PM
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Rigid, and many people still do ride them and there are still plenty of them for sale. We are NOT restricted to just 2 types of MTB's, there are many different types of MTB's, and the suspension is not the only difference between them. 2 HT's could be made for completely different tasks, just like 2 rigid's or FS could be made for completely different things.
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Old 10-31-11, 12:38 PM
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Kind of what is happening too that is a lot more difficult to pick out as a beginner is that while there aren't as extreme differences in MTBs as it seems there used to be, their differences are more subtle. The differences between an XC MTB and an "all mountain" MTB might not be much at first glance to a beginner.

Too see more dramatic differences, look up rigid 26", rigid 29", hardtail of each size, and full suspension. Dirt jump bikes are maybe a little more noticeable too as far as differences in geometry. They tend to be almost like adult BMX bikes with shorter travel suspension forks.
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Old 10-31-11, 01:10 PM
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Back in the early days the pioneers of the sport modified existing bicycles to allow them to go off roading and the favoured design was the old cruiser as it had the right tyres, solid construction, and these were most often adapted with touring derailleurs and gearing to allow them to go up as well as they came down.

As designs evolved and new technologies like suspensions and indexed shifting systems came along the sport really expanded although there are some that still like to ride rigid and remember when mountain bikes were still rigid and even came with or were refitted with drop bars.

1990 Moulden... it lives a double life as a commuter and XC / monster cross bike depending on what it is wearing... or not wearing. It was originally built for fast XC racing and was fitted with flat bars.


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Old 10-31-11, 01:21 PM
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Hybrid bicycle evolved from many different types and can basically be described as the bastard child of a road bike and a mountain bike although they draw a lot from vintage roadsters and comfort bikes as well... they are the modern all rounder.

Some hybrids lean toward the mtb side of things while others are really best designed for urban and road use... my old Trek 7500 had a similar frame to my 6700 mountain bike, was rigid, tough as nails... and and could handle terrain that most would only tackle on a mountain bike.
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Old 10-31-11, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by SlimRider View Post
PS.



Here's a model of the first mass-produced mountain bike manufactured here in the U.S. It's called the Stompjumper, and it was made by Specialized. Kinda looks more like a road bike, if you'd ask me!
Early mountain bikes were very similar to touring bikes as bikes with sloping top tubes and compact geometry had yet to appear... as such they are quite popular among riders to use as all rounders, atb's, and many get re-purposed as touring bikes since they can perform that function quite well.

1987 Cascade - was their top of the line mountain bike but has been my touring bike for many years.

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Old 10-31-11, 01:53 PM
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Nice representation here of many vintage mountain bikes...

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...mountain-bikes!
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Old 10-31-11, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by SlimRider View Post
Alright then, so what about a MTB with no suspension at all? Do you call that, an MTB?...Or, do you call that a hybrid?
  • Throwback?
  • Dinosaur?
  • Dentist's dream?
  • Yard sale fodder?
  • Commuter?
  • Hobo car?
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Old 10-31-11, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
Hybrid bicycle evolved from many different types and can basically be described as the bastard child of a road bike and a mountain bike although they draw a lot from vintage roadsters and comfort bikes as well... they are the modern all rounder.

Some hybrids lean toward the mtb side of things while others are really best designed for urban and road use... my old Trek 7500 had a similar frame to my 6700 mountain bike, was rigid, tough as nails... and and could handle terrain that most would only tackle on a mountain bike.
Wow, Sixty!

You have a huge depth of knowledge with respect to both bicycle construction and its history! I'm profoundly impressed...

I feel enriched by your enormous contribution.

Thank you for everything.

Most Respectfully,

- Slim

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Old 10-31-11, 03:52 PM
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The key element for off-roadability is the fat tires. Most hybrid frames will not accept even 1.9" rubber.

But there's no need to get caught up in too much nomenclature. Just ride what you like.
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Old 10-31-11, 03:58 PM
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I sometimes wonder if these new 29r's owe a little bit to hybrids, many of which are like mountain bikes with 700c wheels and slightly wider tyres.. my early Trek 7500 accepted 700:45 tyres with ease and could have run tyres close to 60mm as it had such generous clearances and was as tough as any mtb.

Makes me regret selling it as it would have made a nice base for a 29'r.

Guess I will just have to build myself a frame and fork that will take some fatties...
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Old 11-01-11, 06:33 AM
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Originally Posted by dminor View Post
  • Throwback?
  • Dinosaur?
  • Dentist's dream?
  • Yard sale fodder?
  • Commuter?
  • Hobo car?
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Old 11-01-11, 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by dminor View Post
  • Throwback?
  • Dinosaur?
  • Dentist's dream?
  • Yard sale fodder?
  • Commuter?
  • Hobo car?
..Minimalist. And, I do have suspension. Between 1/2" and 1" - depending on how much air I have in my tires.

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