As we’re all aware the talk in the Mtn bike world lately has been around wheel sizes and which wheel size is best for a specific application. Enduro Magazine points out while “most” manufacturers are scurrying to shrink chainstays and adjust headtube angles to get their 27.5 wheel bikes to market, “ It’s almost as if consumers and bike companies forgot about things like suspension performance, geometry, frame design”.
In the words of Enduro magazine: Thanks to the sparkly newness of the 650B wheel though, there are bike companies out there who are starting to revive those short-travel XC bikes, but in the process, are also bringing a contemporary approach to both geometry and suspension with that revival. And what exactly am I talking about? Allow me to explain with the introduction of GT’s latest XC-Trail bike; the Helion.
The most noticeable performance attributes of the design are made apparent when riding really choppy terrain that’s littered with loose rocks and square-edged steps in the trail. The high main pivot allows the rear wheel to get out of the way incredibly quickly, and it also allows the bike to pedal remarkably well for what is an active design.
The high main pivot allows the rear wheel to get out of the way incredibly quickly, and it also allows the bike to pedal remarkably well for what is an active design.
In terms of suspension, the AOS design works extremely well, smoothing out ripples and harder hits like it has more travel than it actually does. A decent amount of progression throughout the travel allows the rear shock to firm up and avoid bottoming when you start pushing the bike a little past its comfort zone, but it also gives the bike a poppy feel out on the trail.
As for Handling:
The Helion is really playful for an XC bike, which is a testament to how hard GT have worked with the overall geometry
the Helion pedals better, is more playful, and is far zippier through the corners
The Hellion’s low centre of gravity and AOS suspension design giving the bike a super planted feel that made me want to push it
The Helion is mega-stiff through the back end of the frame, and the front and rear wheels track well over the terrain with pinpoint accuracy.
You can probably gather that I dug the GT Helion, and you’d be bang-on for coming to that conclusion. It’s light and efficient enough to feel comfortable pedaling around on all day long, but it’s playful enough to remain interesting. The combination of the modern cockpit with the bikes dialed geometry really involves you as a rider, and it’s hard not to get egged on to stand up and hammer when on the Helion. As for those 27.5″ wheels…it’s so much more than a new-fangled wheel size that makes the Helion ride so well. Yep, the reason the Helion rides so well comes down to a whole combination of different things, including its active and neutral suspension design, trail-focused geometry package, and mega-stiff chassis. Hat’s off GT. Hat’s off indeed.
Retro City Cycles is holding an Alley Cat Race on Saturday, August 2! An Alley Cat race is a fun and exciting, point-to-point bicycle race involving all types of cyclists at all skill levels. All bikes are welcome! You will receive a map to get you from point to point in this scavenger-hunt fashion. We will be riding in and around the Greater Orlando area! Race will be 15-20 miles in length.
Registration will be at Retro City Cycles beginning at 1 pm. Race will start promptly at 2 pm. Rain or shine!
In addition to a fun day on the bikes, we are teaming up with One Heart for Women and Children, a local charity that provides the necessary resources for families as they transition through and overcome varying hardships of daily living in the Central Florida region and abroad.
Registration is $5 + a canned food item (or other donation) for One Heart. All race proceeds will go to One Heart.
FREE refreshments will be served after the race, and Houndstooth Sauce Company, located in the East End Market, will be setting up a tent and selling delicious BBQ!! http://www.houndstoothsauces.com/
Prizes will be awarded!
*Helmets are required!
*Entry is $5 + canned food item to One Heart, and all bikes are welcome to enter
*It is both a race and scavenger hunt… so pick one!
*There is no SAG… you will have to call if you need help
*Free “refreshments” at finish!!!
Any questions? Please call us at Retro City Cycles (407) 895-2700 or email email@example.com
What is the best place to see fireworks?
See the first-even fireworks on Lake Ivanhoe Saturday night!
“Red, OUT & Equal” is a FREE family-friendly event taking place at Gaston Edwards Park Saturday, July 5, from 12-9:30 pm. Water activities, volleyball tournament, live music, food trucks and cash bars!
Don’t miss it!