Saturday, December 2, 2023

AASQ: How to make a choice the appropriate journey


Maximum cyclists start their cycling adventure on rather easy machines. Some riders get their arms on BMX motorcycles as children, others spend their highschool and school years commuting on highway or hybrid motorcycles.

There are many other people within the mountains who develop up with full-suspension rigs that may deal with probably the most hard trails, however even then, there may be such a lot nuance to bicycle suspension that it’s difficult for riders to in reality dial the very best motorbike for his or her particular wishes after launching full-tilt into mountain cycling.

Orbea Occam SL. Side view.
Mountain motorbike suspension levels from fewer than 100 mm to upwards of 200 mm. Discovering the candy spot makes all of the distinction; (Photograph/Orbea)

Orbea is without doubt one of the most sensible motorbike manufacturers that supply a stacked selection of mountain motorcycles starting from entry-level hardtails, to XC race motorcycles, and as much as long-travel downhill crushers.

Whilst high-end motorcycles are at all times one thing to salivate over, discovering the motorbike with the most efficient suspension options for a selected rider calls for slightly extra of an working out what other journey quantities seem like, and the way they serve as.

We’ll undergo other Orbea fashions and their other quantities of journey to focus on the place every motorbike, and suspension genre, would thrive or battle.

XC and Downcountry suspension

Move Nation mountain motorcycles and their more moderen, moderately longer-travel “downcountry” brethren are normally characterised by means of frames constructed with potency in thoughts paired with quick journey suspension.

Maximum pass nation race motorcycles make the most of entrance and rear suspension starting from round 80mm as much as 120mm at the upper finish. Downcountry motorcycles are some of the more moderen and extra arguable motorbike kinds hitting the marketplace just lately. They incorporate suspensions with moderately extra journey than natural XC motorcycles and an total bundle that attracts from XC motorbike design, however with a bit extra emphasis on convenience and capacity in additional technical terrain.


Orbea Oiz mountain bike standing in the mountains. Side view.
The Orbea Oiz has 120mm of journey, making it a perfect race or short-travel path choice; (Photograph/Orbea)

Nonetheless, the point of interest this is extra on potency, weight and quickness, the place path motorcycles and the ones with much more journey prioritize energy, sturdiness, and getting sufficient journey to cushion large hits. Many of those motorcycles see journey round 115 to 130.

The Orbea Oiz is an ideal instance of this lower-travel suspension. The Oiz is a race motorbike not unusual at the global excursion circuit, however most often comes with 120mm of journey. That regularly makes it one of the most longer-travel motorcycles at the global excursion XC level.

However in follow, longer journey XC motorcycles just like the Oiz nonetheless can carry out extraordinarily neatly given their lightness. In a extra technical XC race path, moderately longer journey will also be most popular to assist easy out bite. Whether or not a natural XC race motorbike or downcountry fashion, riders can be expecting an identical issues from motorcycles starting from the 80mm to 120mm journey vary.

First, those motorcycles will probably be nice climbers. Since there isn’t a lot journey to transport thru, pedal strokes are a lot more environment friendly. Much less journey additionally approach shocks and forks themselves are considerably lighter than their longer-travel opposite numbers, which interprets to extra velocity, particularly over much less technical terrain.

A man riding an Orbea Oiz mountain bike.
Shorter journey in most cases interprets to will increase in potency and velocity; (Photograph/Orbea)

The issue with a majority of these motorcycles is that once terrain does turn into technical, riders generally tend to really feel much more of the path radiating during the suspension and motorbike and into their our bodies. 

After some time within the saddle, they may be able to start to really feel slightly unforgiving. 

However for the ones on a majority of these rigs, that top potency is strictly the purpose. Many ultra-endurance riders and other people who spend upwards of six to 8 hours on a mountain motorbike will go for one thing extra within the downcountry class to offer a bit bit extra convenience, with out sacrificing an excessive amount of potency.

Path motorbike suspension

When riders pay attention phrases like a laugh, snappy, and playful, maximum other people will most often be regarding a path motorbike. Those motorcycles most often have suspension with journey starting from 130mm to 150mm and geometry that makes them playful and confidence-inspiring whilst going downhill and hitting options like jumps and drops.

Orbea Occam SL bicycle standing in the woods.
The Orbea Occam options 140mm of journey in the back and front. The added journey makes it really feel extra plush and forgiving than shorter-travel motorcycles; (Photograph/Orbea)

Path motorcycles generally tend to weigh greater than XC and downcountry fashions, however they normally have a much broader tire clearance, and beefier shocks and forks for extra competitive using and bigger path options.

Orbea’s Occam fashions have compatibility firmly into this class, however additionally they display how tiered suspension brackets primarily based only upon journey don’t inform the entire tale. 

Orbea Occam SL frame suspension photo.
Including journey makes it more uncomplicated to roll over bumps and roots, however extra suspension too can result in much less potency whilst pedaling; (Photograph/Orbea)

As an example, the Occam SL provides 140mm entrance and rear journey, whilst the Occam LT provides a beefed up suspensions with 150mm within the rear and 160 up entrance. Orbea nonetheless expenses the motorbike as a “path” fashion, nevertheless it without a doubt sits at the some distance finish of that designations. Different components like geometry additionally play the most important position in how a motorbike handles at the path. That results in crossover some of the other tiers.

Orbea Occam LT. Side view.
Longer-travel path motorcycles just like the Orbea Oiz LT are nice alternatives for path riders who spend numerous time going downhill; (Photograph/Orbea)

On every fashion although, longer journey suspension discovered on path motorcycles cushions blows from massive roots and rocks, however does no longer compress such a lot that riders really feel extraordinarily slowed down whilst pedaling uphill. Those motorcycles are intended to take a seat within the candy spot between descending and ascending that makes each as comfy and easy as conceivable.

Enduro motorbike suspension

Enduro motorcycles are designed in particular to move downhill over technical terrain conveniently but additionally be offering a strong sufficient platform and company sufficient suspension to permit riders to move uphill, a minimum of in shorter bursts, conveniently.

Those motorcycles take their identify from enduro racing, through which race officers time riders on downhill segments. Whilst riders nonetheless should traverse and climb between the ones segments, the ones sections of the path don’t seem to be timed, so it doesn’t in reality subject how briskly riders climb. Subsequently, downhill options take precedence.

Orbea Rallon mountain bike. Side view.
Enduro-style motorcycles just like the Orbea Rallon center of attention on downhill using, whilst nonetheless permitting riders to pedal with potency once they want to; (Photograph/Orbea)

Orbea’s Rallon suits into this class. Billed as an enduro or park motorbike, the Rallon packs 170mm of journey up entrance, with 167 within the again, it additionally is available in a 29/27.5 inch wheel mullet choice. 

Those motorcycles are extraordinarily flexible and common for individuals who have get entry to to downhill parks or path programs with a laugh, technical descents, however who nonetheless use their motorcycles for path using.

Whilst descending, motorcycles with this point of journey really feel extraordinarily neatly planted at the floor. Longer journey is helping stay the wheels glued to the bottom, permitting riders to really feel grip and self belief whilst velocity down a mountain.

Going up, then again, they may be able to generally tend to really feel slow and feature a tell-tale leap or flex that zaps power and potency. People with those motorcycles normally received’t experience mountaineering over longer sessions of time, however the ones downhills most often make any ascent value it.


Downhill motorcycles keep true to their identify. Their designs beg to indicate downhill over extraordinarily technical terrain, large jumps or drops, however completely don’t no longer honest neatly when mountaineering, or, in reality, when pedaling on the rest even remotely flat.

For riders who reside adjoining to a lift-assisted motorbike park, or do all in their using at one, those motorcycles make for a quick, a laugh, and comfy system to price downhill. THe excessive ranges of journey imply that even higher rocks, rocks and different path stumbling blocks really feel extra like pebbles beneath the tires.

Ultimate ideas

Earlier than deciding at the proper motorbike, riders will have to spend a great deal of time making an allowance for how, the place, and why they journey. All too regularly, riders generally tend to move for motorcycles that fit their aspirations, quite than their exact talent or native atmosphere. Having the appropriate motorbike for the terrain in a selected group or that fits or complements a raiders talent could make using a lot more a laugh.

Likewise, the unsuitable motorbike can leech the enjoyment out of using.

This submit is subsidized by means of Orbea. Be told extra about Orbea motorcycles at


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Related Stories