Transition Bikes Introduces Speed Balanced Geometry - SBG

Discussion in 'Press Releases' started by xero, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. xero

    xero Supersports

    TransitionLogoFinal_WithTagLine640.png

    Introducing SBG; Speed Balanced Geometry

    What is it about the human connection to the bicycle that brings us so much joy?
    How can such a simple mechanical device mean so much to so many of us?
    What if it was possible to heighten that connection?
    What would it take, what would it mean and how would you achieve it?

    Imagine a dream where you could ride without thinking about what your front wheel is doing.
    You stopped having conscious thought about whether it had traction or not, instead you just intuitively knew.
    In this same dream your bike could do exactly what you wanted it to at whatever speed your were moving.
    At high speeds it carved stable turns with supreme grip, and at slow speeds it was nimble and precise to maneuver tight turns.
    This was our dream.

    In the search for a better handling bike, we started by asking some simple questions.
    Why are mountain bikes becoming longer and slacker? The obvious answer is stability.
    Why is this good? It makes the rider feel safer and creates a more stable chassis at higher speeds or steeper terrain.
    Longer and slacker comes at a cost however, and that cost is realized at slower speeds,
    or flatter terrain where the front wheel is too far ahead of the rider.
    This inhibits the rider's ability to properly weight the front wheel.
    What if it were possible to have a mountain bike that did all of this well?

    bal·ance noun

    1. an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady.
    "slipping in the mud but keeping their balance"

    p4pb14882585.jpg

    Inspired by this dream, late in 2015 we initiated a research program led by our Blue Balls Development Team
    to discover ways we could make our current bikes handle even better.
    We began an extensive test cycle with different variations of fork offset and geometries.
    Why you ask?

    In the last 5 years, your mountain bike has changed in in many ways.
    Your wheels have likely gotten bigger. Your frame has gotten longer.
    Your head tube has gotten slacker. Your suspension has improved.
    Your stem has gotten shorter and your bars have gotten wider.
    And you likely have a remote dropper seat post opposed to a straight post.
    Your components have improved in ways that have allowed you to ride easier, farther and harder.
    Yet, the there are some things that haven't been updated with the rest of these improvements.
    One of these things is steering trail.

    Trail is one of the dimensions that relates to particular steering feel and handling characteristics.
    Current trail figures fall between a regular set of parameters depending on wheel size and bike suspension travel.
    The thing is, this range of trail is based on an old legacy of 26" bikes with outdated geometry
    ; steep head tube angles, shorter reach and top tube, longer stems and skinnier handlebars.

    Why shouldn't this evolve with the rest of your bike?

    p4pb14882589.jpg

    Transition SENTINEL with SBG technology. Coming this fall.

    p4pb14882588.jpg

    The Tech

    Frame sizing - Our SBG system utilizes frame reach measurements that are longer than our current models.
    The SBG system is designed to be used with a 40mm stem, which
    equates to a modest total increase in reach when compared to our current models which use 50mm stems.
    Our SBG system additionally includes steeper seat tube angles which aid in climbing traction
    and reduce seated sag when climbing. These two changes bring the rider more forward in the chassis
    into a more central location between the front and rear tire contact patches, which greatly increases traction.

    Head tube angle - SBG integrates slacker headtube angles which allow the fork to
    absorb impacts better on all angles, and positions the front wheel further forward in relation to the handlebars.
    As you approach obstacles in the trail a steeper head tube angle has a more vertical suspension path.
    This reduces the forks ability to properly absorb impacts and generates deflection.
    A slacker headtube angle positions the fork at a better angle of approach to absorb impacts which reduces deflection.
    Additionally, slacker headtube angles reduce dive while increasing rear wheel grip under heavy braking.

    Fork offset - SBG is designed to be used with a fork offset that is shorter than traditionally used per wheel size.
    The shorter fork offset brings the front axle more rearward and under the rider which further
    increases front tire traction. This works in unison with the shorter stem length to provide a more
    direct steering input and dramatically enhances connectivity to what is happening with the front wheel.
    The shorter offset also brings the front wheel more under the rider which balances the
    effects of a slacker head angle.
    Our SBG system creates a longer trail figure than standard, used in a way that eliminates the negative side effects.

    p4pb14884733.jpg

    If you were to implement any of these changes independently you would see negative handling effects,
    but when executed together each change compliments the other which creates a
    dramatically different handling bike. SBG ensures the bike maintains low speed agility, increases front wheel traction,
    and proper rider weight balance while actually increasing confidence in steep terrain and at high speeds.
    With SBG, a slacker head tube angle is combined with a reduced offset fork to eliminate a vague feeling front wheel.
    This improves front to rear weight distribution on the bike, which is often out of balance on long and slack bikes.
    One of SBG's greatest benefits is that it creates a steering feel that is highly dependent on wheel speed.

    At lower speeds the bike is easy to redirect, responds easily to steering inputs,
    and reduces front wheel wander when climbing. As the wheel rotates faster the bike becomes more stable,
    and less energy is required to keep the bike tracking straight.
    The rider is encouraged to lean into corners.
    SBG also reduces under and over steer, front wheel push, and improves front wheel traction in flat corners
    and off camber sections. Our SBG system provides more stability at high speed,
    more agility at low speed, improved traction, control and confidence for riders at all speeds.

    What does this ultimately mean for you? More control, more confidence, more party.

    Click for the full video release
     
  2. creaky

    creaky Likes Bikes and Dirt

    I read through the whole thing expecting Transition to be taking the piss at the end. It seems, however, that they are serious. Basically following modern frame geo trends but with a different fork offset ? What is the offset they are running ?
     
  3. xero

    xero Supersports

    Yes, this time the acronym is legit.
    The offset is listed above on the Sentinel Geo chart ( 42/44 )
    That's not to say your old fork won't work with the frame and be ok, just the new offsets will give the optimal performance gains in conjunction with the other changes.
     
  4. moorey

    moorey Isn't flammable.


    Now it sounds like YOU'RE taking the piss, Rodney...
     
  5. dunndog

    dunndog Eats Squid

    I think Rod means your 26" wheels will work just fine on the Sentinel Moorey..
     
  6. xero

    xero Supersports

    Moorey, sooner or later you will need to get rid of those quadra 21's. ;)

    In real terms performance gains are found in increments.
    Offsets have been largely left alone, even though our bikes have been getting longer, slacker, etc over the last few years. It's about finding the right balance between stability and agility.
    The fork guys see the merit in what Transition is doing here.
    To retool / produce these means some pretty decent costs, so if there was no good reason, it would not of been possible, especially doing it for a company the size of Transition.

    Chris Porter ( Mojo ) has been following the same train of thought for some time now.
    This move was inspired partly by an article that Lars read and went out and started to trial.

    Perhaps the Vital article will help many get their head around the real world feel.
    2 identical bikes - one with the standard current 29 offset one with the new offset head to head.

    http://vitalmtb.com/features/Speed-...proach-To-Creating-Better-Mountain-Bikes,1861
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2017
  7. clockworked

    clockworked Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Isnt this what trek has been doing for years? My 2013 remedy had 44mm offset forks...
     
  8. teK--

    teK-- Eats Squid

    Yep Giant ran custom offset forks on the 2015-2016 Reign but interesting in 2017 with the boost fork they seem to run a standard offset. Maybe the performance benefit vs the cost of rockshox and fox running custom CSUs for them was not worth it? Lots of people had fitted aftermarket forks with standard offset and found the change in handling to be hardly noticeable.
     
  9. moorey

    moorey Isn't flammable.

    26" pikes have long had the reduced offset. Wheel size of the future....
     
  10. pink poodle

    pink poodle Clinically Inane

    My head...it is filled with marketing jargon, but no real depth. Will there be a plus size edition?

    The bike looks nice though. Love that low top tube. Or is it a standard height top tube with the new wheel standard of 32"?
     
  11. xero

    xero Supersports

    The focus here is not just offset.
    There has been a fairly standard adaption over the last few years going from 26, 27.5 and 29 in relation to trail.
    Yet, over the last few years, our bikes have changed dramatically.
    ( Anyone still running 71 degree head angles, 90mm stems and 680 bars? .... Ok maybe a few! )

    Lars puts it best here:
    "In the last 5 years, your mountain bike has changed in in many ways.
    Your wheels have likely gotten bigger. Your frame has gotten longer.
    Your head tube has gotten slacker. Your suspension has improved.
    Your stem has gotten shorter and your bars have gotten wider.
    And you likely have a remote dropper seat post opposed to a straight post.
    Your components have improved in ways that have allowed you to ride easier, farther and harder.
    Yet, the there are some things that haven't been updated with the rest of these improvements.
    One of these things is steering trail.
    Trail is one of the dimensions that relates to particular steering feel and handling characteristics.
    Current trail figures fall between a regular set of parameters depending on wheel size and bike suspension travel.
    The thing is, this range of trail is based on an old legacy of 26" bikes with outdated geometry;
    steep head tube angles, shorter reach and top tube, longer stems and skinnier handlebars.

    Why shouldn't this evolve with the rest of your bike?"
     
  12. creaky

    creaky Likes Bikes and Dirt

    I see that Specialized have also "taken a bold step and created its own custom fork offset" with the new epic .... 42mm.

    From bike exchange presser:

    "6. Custom Fork Offset

    With the head angle slackening out and the reach growing, Specialized has taken a bold step and created its own custom fork offset. Interestingly, this arguably goes in the opposite direction of most 29ers, with less offset being chosen.

    As a result, the new Epic features a fork with 42mm offset, something creates a higher trail number (94mm). That’s 10mm more than the previous Epic. On paper, this should give the bike an impressive straight-line stability but may come at the cost of agility. It’s something we’re eager to test out ourselves. "
     
  13. Knuckles

    Knuckles Burner

    I believe they're planning to patent it before Transition take it to market.....surprisingly, boldly.

    The buzz is they'll be calling it Specialized Human Intergrated Technology.
     
  14. creaky

    creaky Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Shit hey ?

    It's just not cool once specialized does it.

    The new transition looks sweet though.
     
  15. xero

    xero Supersports

    The big S doing it on shorter travel bikes is cool.... Be interesting to see if they carry across the line of the longer models.
    Transition believes this train of thought will become more common.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2017
  16. pink poodle

    pink poodle Clinically Inane

    That doesn't sound like Specialized at all...

    Stratos forks anyone?
     
  17. safreek

    safreek Vealcake

    Yes please
     
  18. Flow-Rider

    Flow-Rider Eats Squid

    Why don't you see if anyone is willing to make lower fork legs with adjustable trail by different replaceable dropouts lengths or some sort of system with a pivot clamp and shims. We've been doing it on race cars for what seems like eons.

    If trail is a critical component of the frame design it will change with different height forks or even different sag settings that people use.
     
  19. dunndog

    dunndog Eats Squid

    No more than wheelbase or rake, but these things are set measurements..
     
  20. Flow-Rider

    Flow-Rider Eats Squid

    Yes, the static dimensions are all relative to themselves on the front as in you change 1 and it alters the other, unless you modify other parts of the frame to be adjustable.

    20mm either side of the wheelbase will most likely be unnoticeable but 20mm either side of 40mm of trail will do a lot with the feel and handling of the bike as you're severely altering the caster angle.

    We have adjustable headsets, adjustable chips for rear pivots and why not have adjustable fork trail?

    You can still use the same forks on other models of bikes without changing the complete fork legs over.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2017

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