Matt's MegaSmash Makeover

|

Look ma, no compromises! Our Modular Frame Platform gives you the necessary frame adjustments to mix and match wheel sizes and wheel travel without running into any funky geometry or ride quality changes. This opens up the floodgates for a grip of nerdy bike hacks between the different GeoAdjust Headset orientations and cups, to different kinematics on existing models.

Despite crushing all of his records around the Front Range on his new Revved Trail Pistol, Chief Enginerd Matt knew he was going to want something special for his July 4th trip to Whistler Bike Park. Straight outta our Secret Menu comes the MegaSmash.

Concept:

Early in the days of the 29” revolution many people tested 69er setups with a 26” rear wheel and 29” front. In theory, this would let the front wheel carry more momentum over trail obstacles while giving you greater shorts clearance and acceleration from the smaller 26” rear wheel. In time bike design improved and 29ers could jump and corner with the best little wheels but shorter riders always need more clearance to keep from buzzing a tire on the steepest, roughest, most-high-consequence terrain.

Fast forward to 2017-2018 and many World Cup and enduro teams began testing 29” race bikes. Those that did not have 29” bikes at their disposal began trying out mullet setups with a larger 29” front wheel paired with the as-designed 27.5” rear wheel. A few racers put down legendary results on mullet setups and here we are with a ton of renewed interest in mixed up wheel sizes on a bike.

From Trail Pistol to MegaSmash

With our Modular Frame Platform, each frame shares a common front triangle, rocker link, and swingarm. Converting between each model is as easy as swapping the left and right seatstays and the shock. Depending on the conversion you’re cooking up, you may also want to plan on swapping the fork and wheels. This feature is great for all the parts hoarders and globetrotters alike who want different bikes for different terrain or different times of year.

What stayed the same with his Trail Pistol:

  • Drivetrain: Shimano XT 11 speed / eThirteen TRS+ cassette
  • Brakes: SRAM Code R
  • Dropper: BikeYoke Revive 185
  • Cranks: Race Face Turbine CINCH

What changed with the MegaSmash:

  • Frame: Megatrail Seatstay Tuning Kit, GeoAdjust 0 mm lower headset cup
  • Fork: Fox Factory Grip 2 36, 170 mm of travel
  • Shock: Fox Factory DHX2, 165 mm of travel (Gravity Mode)
  • Front Wheel / Tire: DT Swiss M1900, Maxxis Assegai 29x2.50WT 3C MaxxGrip/TR/DD, Cushcore
  • Rear Wheel / Tire: DT Swiss M1900, Maxxis DHRII 27.5x2.50WT, 3C MaxxGrip/TR/DD, Cushcore

Ride Impressions:

Why did you convert to a MegaSmash?

Chief Enginerd Matt - "The Trail Pistol is awesome for Colorado Front Range trail rides, but for Whistler and Bellingham's steep and rough descents, I wanted to convert the bike to a MegaSmash. The 170 mm travel 29er front end is a turbo-charged version of what I was used to with the Trail Pistol, and the Megatrail rear end has plenty of travel and butt-to-tire clearance for whatever I could find. 

Additionally, back in 2015 I ran a 29er front end on a Megatrail, and liked the bigger wheel up front, but prior to the GeoAdjust headset, I had to run a shorter travel fork to keep the front end from becoming too tall. With the choices available now on the Modular Frame Platform, and the ability to adjust front ride height with the GeoAdjust, it was time to do it again, in a better way."

How did the ride compare to what you're used to? 

Matt - "The transformation was very noticeable, what was a trail ripper turned into a beast made for bike park runs, shuttle laps, and trail rides with non technical climbing. The rear suspension spent most of the trip in Gravity Mode, but was switched to Trail Mode for the climbs on Galbraith Mountain. While any of the four full suspension models can handle any ride thrown at them, converting between models is rewarding to get each setup honed for a specific use."

Would you do anything different next time?

Matt - "Soft rubber compound, DoubleDown tires with CushCore was overkill on the larger climbing day in Bellingham. Running a lighter EXO+ front casing and a faster rolling rubber compound in the rear would have been a better overall setup for me."

What would you recommend to anyone else thinking about trying a MegaSmash?

Matt - "I'm lucky to have access to a parts bin with extra forks and wheels for this swap. If you don't, there are some strategic choices to be made when building your bike. For example, starting with a burly fork would have allowed a travel change from with just an inexpensive air spring shaft or moving spacers rather than replacing my Pike entirely. The front wheel swap could have been replaced by just swapping tires."

Would I do this again next year?

Matt - "Yes, the swap was straight forward, and fun to have two different setups optimized for different types of riding with only changing out a few parts. I'll probably swap it over again this year for a trip to Keystone or Angel Fire." 

Is the MegaSmash right for you?

Hell yeah! I want all the travel I can get paired with all the rear wheel clearance to prevent any skidmarks on my shorts. Get in touch with us at the Shredquarters or check out the Secret Menu if you have any questions about whether the MegaSmash is right for you. 

This entry was posted in no categories.