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The Current Stable

Downhill - 2005 Mountain Cycle Shockwave 9.5

Photo: Mountain Cycle Shockwave 9.5.  Click to view larger version

  • Powdercoated "Team Red"
  • Romic shock
  • Floating brake system
  • 12mm standard through-axle rear end
  • 2003 Marzocchi Super T (7" travel), QR20 Plus through-axle, direct mount stem
  • Shimano XT shifter, rear deraileur, cassette
  • Hayes hydraulic brakes, 8" rotors
  • ethirteen chainguide
  • Shimano Saint crankset
  • Da Bomb rear hub, Sun MTX rim, Supafly build
  • Shimano DX platform pedals
  • Truvative Holzfeller bar
  • Thomson seatpost
The Mountain Cycle Shockwave 9.5 is a pure downhill machine with a sigle-pivot rear suspension design featuring a moto-style linkage driving a single coil-over shock. The main frame is a monocoque aluminum design with Mountain Cycle's exclusive integrated fork stop.

The floating brake system eliminates "brake jack", a condition whereby the rear suspension extends ("jacks up") during hard braking.

Photo: Mountain Cycle Shockwave 9.5.  Click to view larger version

Freeride/All Mountain - 2001 Kona Stab

This is the ultimate Ontario DH/freeride bike if you are on a budget. I went with the Hayes hydraulic disk brake upgrade, with 8" front and 6" rear rotor. Without the upgrade, you got Shimano V-Brakes front and rear. I highly reccommend Hayes hydros over Shimano V-Brakes for freeride and DH if you can afford it.

Photo: Stab, click to view larger version
The frame accepts a front deraileur. I have it set up with triple chainrings on a second Hussefelt crankset. The Mr. Dirt Gizmo comes off the ISCG (International Standard Chain Guide) mount with a couple of bolts, and with the new ISIS bottom bracket/crank system constant removal and re-installation of the crankarm should not be as much of a problem as it used to be with the square taper system.

Other upgrades include an XT rear deraileur (I had one hanging around), a Thompson seatpost (the stock Kona ones are weak and almost always break), Intense Comp60 2.7 tires, ODI Lock-On grips, and Easton Cully pedals.

Photo: Super T, click to view larger version Update 03/03/15

Over the winter, this bike was up for sale. However, instead of selling it and sinking a bunch of cash into a brand new bike, the front fork has been upgraded to a 2003 Marzocchi Super T, and a new bike will have to wait another season.

This 2003 Super T differs from the orignal 2001 Super T that came with this bike in that is has 7" of travel (vs. 6"), 32mm stanchions (vs. 30mm), an upgraded damping system, and a host of structural changes. The new fork has raked the geometry out a bit due to the extra travel and Cryo-Fit lower crown that does not allow for the fork legs to be slid up and down in the clamps to adjust the effective length of the forks. One can make educated guesses as to what this will do to the handling (more stable, slower steering), but the final verdict will come only with the first downhill run once the snow melts.

Other plans for the upcoming season include upgrading the rear 6" Hayes rotor to an aftermarket 8", and possibly some BETD or similar link plates to increase the rear travel to match the new 7" travel front end.

At the time this bike was purchased in 2001, it represented the longest travel Kona besides the Stab Primo. At the time the Stinkys all had 5" travel. A year later, Kona released a 6" travel Stinky, the Primo, which was essentially the 2001 Stab frame without the ISCG, and a few other structural changes. Now, there is a 7" travel Stinky, and the newest Stab is also 7" travel front and rear.

The biggest question many earlier 6" travel Stab and Stinky owners have is whether or not they can get their Konas up to 7" of travel. The answer is yes, if you use new linkage plates from BETD replacement plates. Whether or not you can do it with stock Kona parts (ie. getting plates and a shock from a later 7" travel Kona), I don't know...

Photo: Kona Stab in All-Mountain mode.  Click to view larger version Update 05/08/15

Since getting the Mountain Cycle Shockwave 9.5 for a DH bike, I've converted the Stab into more of an all-mountian bike with a 6" travel Marzocchi Z150 single crown fork and dual-ring-with-bashguard Truvative cranks (pic at right).

The fork has the ability to lock out near full compression, making climbs a bit easier by shortening the front end. I may try to lighten the bike up a bit to use it more as a cross country bike, but ultimately I will likely sell it and get a bike better suited for XC. I have a brand new full pivot kit ready to be installed, so the bike will be pretty fresh when I do decide to sell it.

Freeride/Dirt Jump Hardtail - 2001 Planet X Bommer

Click to view larger version

  • Cro-moly frame, 0" of rear travel
  • Marzocchi Bomber Z1 CR fork with 5" travel kit
  • Hayes hydraulic disk brakes front and rear, 6" disks
  • Sun Rhyno Lite rims, XT front hub, WTB Motoraptor tires
  • Race Face Turbine LP crankset, Axiom bash guard
  • XT rear deraileur, LX shifters, STX front deraileur
  • Snafu platform pedals
  • Azonic riser bar, Kore stem, ODI Lock-On grips
  • Titec Bezerker saddle

The Planet X Bommer is a bombproof hardtail designed specifically for dirt jumping. Cro-moly construction with beefy gussets, BMX-style geometry (steep!) and a way cool seat stay bridge set this bike apart from other freeride hardtails (eg. Kona Roast, Norco 250cc, RMB Reaper). Yes, it is made in Taiwan, but it is well designed, well built, not too expensive, and is backed by a great warranty. In other words, a lot like my Stab, and a great bike altogether.

The bike is setup with a Marzocchi Bomber Z1 CR fork that has the 5" travel kit installed. With the long travel fork, the Bommer's geometry is still quite quick - if it had a shorter travel fork installed I think it might be too quick. If you look at the photo you can see how steep the head angle is even with the long fork. That said, the bike still feels rock stable on high speed downhills, with no twitchiness to speak of. Very nice... I still might put a 24" wheel out back to slacken it up a bit, or even 24s on both ends, which would instead make it even quicker. I dunno...lets just try everything!

I think I have been spoiled by the power and feel of the Hayes hydraulic brakes. I do not seem to like anything but Hayes hydros. Same with Bombers - everything else just does not feel "right". Gimme a bike with Hayes hydros and a long travel Bomber and I'll be happy...

The matte black finish is awesome. Planet X do some very cool paint jobs, but there is something about the matte black that I personally like - sort of aggressive and understated at the same time. Very nice...

Pic: GT Edge Ti

Road - GT Edge Titanium

Weight: 21lbs

Mmmmmm, titanium. Plush ride, but with great lateral stiffness, and light weight to boot. Should last a lifetime. The hole in your wallet is the worst thing about it...

Pic: Speedplay Pedals The Speedplay pedals are great. They take a bit of getting used to, but it does not take long. These pedals have a huge amount of float, but power transfer is as direct and solid as any other pedal out there. There are also very light, and are quite easy to clip out of. Clipping in takes a bit of practice, which is really the only nitpick with these pedals, and the fact that they are double-sided almost makes up for this.

If you do not have STI style shifting now, do not try it unless you are ready to buy, because you will immediately want it...

The left 600 STI shifter broke, and since Shimano only makes lower-end 8-speed STI components anymore, I had to turn to eBay to find a reasonably high-end 8-speed shifter. I found a set of 105s, bid and won, and was on my way.

Past Bikes

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