Thursday, September 27, 2012

Trek's New Stache

Trek has entered the realm of longer travel hardtail mountain bikes with their new Stache line.  These bikes are pitched as aggressive, all mountain rigs for carrying on over all manner of terrain.  I think that's a mistake in marketing frankly.  This bike really is a stable, comfortable, all day mountain bike.

The five inch travel fork sounds like a lot, until you set the sag at 1" with proper pressure.  The sixty eight degree head angle sounds way slack, again, until it sags down to around a normal sixty nine or so.  Overall this bike is a big kitten.  It's light enough to be easy to ride, and very stable through rough terrain.

This bike is our shop demo bike, and is built very similar to the stock bikes from Trek.  Built with a full Shimano SLX parts kit, this bike is a great value for the performance.  SLX is one of our favorite choices for parts that work and don't break the bank.  It looks pretty great too!

Shimano's clutch type shadow derailleurs go a long ways towards making chain slap a thing of the past.  These keep functions quiet, and shift very precisely.  An on/off switch allows the user to turn the clutch off to facilitate easy wheel removal.  Shown here is the captured 142mm rear axle that keeps the rear end all together.  

The wheels on this bike are built with Bontrager's excellent Duster tubeless rims.  Paired with their new 29-3 2.3" tubeless tires made for easy tubeless set up with just a floor pump.  These rims build up very well, and are quite strong while being fairly light.  They are some of my favorites.

Fox's Float 32 fork is light and supple.  The tire clearance is generous, and it looks and rides great. The tread pattern on the 29-3 is quite nice.  It rolls and hooks up well, and at just over 700 gms it's not a pig either.  It's a high volume, fast rolling tire that will work very well for a lot of folks.

Shimano's SLX shifters work great as advertised.  The brakes are a standout component though.  These easily out perform most of the brakes I have ever used, and they are quite reasonably priced to boot.

Fox's new Climb, Trail, Descend, (CTD,) damper on the Float works great.  It's easy to adjust, and does exactly what it says.  The clicks in between each step are nice and tactile, and the knob is easy to manipulate.

I'm thrilled to see the return of these top caps on newer Trek mountain bikes.  I have one form a long time ago, and it's made the rounds on some of my favorite bikes over the years.   Good words to live by.

The Trek Stache is a great bike.  It rides well, looks great, and is quite affordable for the quality of components.  Stop by the shop and take this one out for a ride!


Exhausted_Auk said...

Are you saying that Bontrager has rims available separately for wheelbuilders? They do not advertise this on their web site, just complete wheels.

Ben Witt said...

That is correct. Most rims are available to match their stock wheels. Some are only made in 28h, these are also available in 32 hole drilling in black or silver as pictured. It is my understanding that you need to be a Trek bike or part dealer to have access to these though, which is likely why many smaller builders don't advertise their availability.

Jason Fuller said...

I like how I can see the critter's progress along the tire from shot to shot.

Also, funny how geometry is so location-specific. Around here (north shore), 68 is pretty steep for a HTA!

Ben Witt said...

I thought the grasshopper added something nice.

I'll agree on the head tube angle point. That very fact is why I said they've marketed this wrong IMO. I think the bike fits a lot more riders than will be assumed looking at Trek ads. The bike is pretty normal for trail XC around here, which is albeit quite tame compared to where you are.