I recently read an article about bike development and how the industry is going at light speed about it. Companies each have their own research and development for the frame design, components, drive terrain, suspension, etc. Ten years ago, when you say mountain bike, it was a typical bike probably with front suspension. The races all depended on how long the rider trained and how mentally prepared he is for the course. Now, it is a totally different journey. The saying “wala sa pana yan, nasa Indian yan” is getting quite outdated.
Imagine facing a rider on the same skill level but he has the most advanced carbon frame with the nastiest suspension setting, armed with the lightest yet sturdiest components, running on 27.5 carbon wheels… versus you, on a 26 inch full suspension 9 speed mountain bike. It is like running a Honda Civic versus a Subaru BRZ. You might get a chance, but…
What is the point? Upgrade or not, the bike market is slowly shifting its landscape. You should be wise in upgrading and you should know when to chill and wait for the next wave.
The drive terrain jumped from 3 x 9 to 2 x 10, and now it is on 1 x 11. Decide on what is best suited for your riding style.
Suspension: save up for a Full-Suspension bike.
Wheelset: 26 is slowly getting out of style. If you are doing dirt jump, stick to it. If you are going XC, go big with the 29ers. If you are getting future ready, the 27.5 is the new sweet spot bike companies are going to.
Cockpit: Carbon or Titanium is slowly spreading through out the market. Quite expensive still, but when the market is flooded with carbon parts, the price will eventually drop.
Dropper: This is the future. If you got the cash to blow on the really light ones, well and good. This is perfect for Enduro racers. Not racing? take your time and adjust your seat post manually.
At the end of the day, it is your bike. Whatever you want to do with it, is your choice.
It is your money. Spend it wisely. (buy bike parts! hahaha!)
Just remember to ride the bike and just don’t stare at it nor park it.
Ride Hard! Ride safe!
photo credits: world wide web