Another installation in the Chromag Vlog series! Now I didn’t actually ride the Chromag this time. What I did was take the fork, tires, cushcore tire inserts, pedals and saddle from my Chromag and put them on the HD5 so I can see how exactly these frames stack up against each other. I broke the test down into three parts:
- Trail riding: My biggest takeaway from the trail riding portion was that full suspension bikes leave quite a bit more margin for error. That means I’m quite a bit more relaxed, as I’m comfortable knowing I can get over roots and rocks without sacrificing speed. On the hardtail, I feel much more connected to the trail, but that also means I’m thinking a lot about where my wheels are, and anticipating potential hazards that I might not be able to pump through as smoothly as I could on a full suspension bike.
- Jumping: The hardtail can pull off all the same moves as the full suspension and jumping on it is easy and fun! However, looking back at the footage, I felt like I was jumping higher on the full suspension. The impact from the landing was also smoother.
- Cornering: I feel like the full suspension has more traction than the hardtail.
I do want to reiterate that these are both GREAT bikes- they just provide for a different experience. The hardtail is tremendously fun and, unless you live in the super rocky desert terrain, I would absolutely recommend one. If you have the means to have two bikes, I think having both a hardtail and a full squish is worth it given how different the riding experiences are.