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Santa Cruz Bicycles Blur TR Carbon with FOX CTD Kashima $0.00
When it comes to choices, we're living in a mountain bike utopia. But, there's one problem with all those bikes. They're so dedicated at what they're designed to do, you need one of each to enjoy specific trails/conditions. A 29er hardtail, all-mountain bike, dedicated gravity rig, and a fat bike of course, are all great if you're riding them on their intended terrain. The versatility is the beauty of Santa Cruz's Blur TR Carbon with Fox CTD Kashima shock.
It sports 127mm of travel and a slackened head angle in a carbon XC chassis -- it's a nice return to the classic mountain bike platform. A bike that can be raced or used for getting you around the mountain with comfort and conviction. Sure, you're not going take it to a bike park, but the Blur TR can hold its own on 90% of the trails out there -- and it won’t beat you up.
The TR is based on the established XC Blur platform, but instead of 100mm of travel, it gets a 27mm bonus of travel, along with a slackened headtube (69.5 to 68 degrees), and lower standover height. These differences are especially important on difficult or steep sections of trails. Where the Blur XC runs out of travel through the rough stuff, the Blur TR will remain comfortable and in control. In comparison to the 140mm travel Blur LT, the TR frame is close to a pound lighter.
The secret to the Blur TR's weight vs. strength ratio is Santa Cruz's proprietary carbon processes. The front triangle of the Blur TR Carbon is constructed as once piece, rather than having components produced separately, and then bonded or wrapped. Additionally, the carbon fibers are continuous around tube junctions -- to distribute load and absorb impact energy better.
The frame looks as good on the inside as it does on the outside -- there's nothing there except smooth carbon. And, just like the Blur XC Carbon, there are no riveted or bonded-on cable and hose guides, as they're incorporated into the original layup. The stiff carbon chassis is paired with the latest generation Virtual Pivot Point rear suspension.
The upper and lower links flatten out the shock rate and provide a more active feel to the early end of the axle path. The suspension allows the rear wheel to move up and back as you ride over a bump, and it balances the downward force of pedaling with the pulling force of the chain through its link configuration and axle path. The resulting movement makes it easier to roll over a bump or through a dip, and the suspension doesn’t change whether you’re in the saddle or not.
The Blur TR has a carbon fiber upper link that shaves weight and enhances lateral stiffness. Its counterpart on the bottom is alloy, and it has easily-serviceable grease ports. The pivots for both links have beefy 15mm locking collet axle-pins so they won't creak or loosen, and they run on intricately sealed bearings that should last the life of the frame.
The VPP suspension of the Santa Cruz Blur TR Carbon yields 127mm of smooth travel damped by a Fox CTD rear shock with Kashima coating -- a lightweight, reliable shock that features an intuitive interface for simple, on-the-fly suspension tuning. It has three distinct settings; a firm 'Climbing' setting, medium 'Trail' setting, and a plush 'Descend' setting. This keeps operation straightforward and intuitive for beginners and experts alike.
To complement the rear suspension, Santa Cruz recommends forks in the 120 -140mm range, with a tapered steerer tube. The TR uses a 30.9mm seatpost, and 34.9mm top pull, bottom swing front derailleur. All of SC's bikes are transitioning to 142 x 12mm rear axles due to their simplified use and compatibility with Shimano's new direct mount rear derailleurs. If you plan on going that route, you'll need to purchase a direct mount hanger, as the TR ships with a standard hanger and a DT Swiss rear axle.
The Santa Cruz Blur TR Carbon with FOX CTD Kashima comes in Small, Medium, Large, and X-Large and is available in two colors -- Black/Silver, and White.