Defy your limits.
The Santa Cruz Tallboy CC 29 X01 Eagle Reserve complete mountain bike builds on the Tallboy’s legacy as one of the most intuitive trail bikes on earth. If you’re heading out for epic rides on the weekend, and still want to mix it up during mid-week XC races, the Tallboy is a truly worthy steed.
Many of you will remember the commotion that the original Tallboy caused, what with its lively handling that immediately dispelled a mountain of preconceived notions about how 29-inch wheels were supposed to handle. The latest iteration of the Tallboy retains its praiseworthy handling with an added dash of versatility and a pinch of aggressive intent that takes the Tallboy into uncharted territory.
Part of the story of the Tallboy’s success is due to its ability to blur the lines between cross-country rocket and surefooted trail bike. To that end, the Tallboy was built to accommodate 27.5+ wheels as well as 29-inch wheels, as it's presented here. This split personality is enabled by the reversible “flip chip” at the upper link. Setting the flip chip to the “low” mode relaxes the head angle by roughly half a degree and lowers the bottom bracket, which makes for an ideal setup when paired with the slightly larger diameter of 29-inch wheels. The slightly smaller 27.5+ wheels pair with the “high” setting, allowing for similar clearance between the bottom bracket and the ground. The upshot is headache-free swaps between wheel sizes, which gives you more options than ever when you hit the trail.
The Tallboy generates 110mm of travel through the latest version of Santa Cruz’s VPP technology. As with all VPP bikes, the Tallboy’s counter-rotating links are carefully arranged to resist activation by pedaling forces, all but eliminating unwanted bobbing under power. This being the latest iteration of VPP, it’s tuned to provide more midstroke support than previous generations of the VPP platform, giving the rider a better feel for the terrain, and a livelier ride feel.
While the excellent suspension plays a large role, a key part of the Tallboy’s secret sauce is its carefully tuned geometry. At 68 degrees, the head angle is sufficiently nimble for whipping through tight chicanes, while remaining relaxed enough to stay composed at high speed. The 17-inch chainstays enhance the ability to change directions quickly, while retaining enough length to provide ample traction when the trail points skyward. And the way the moderately roomy cockpit positions the rider between the wheels makes for reflexive handling with a minimum of effort.
The Tallboy is built using Santa Cruz’s top tier CC carbon fiber construction. By using some of the finest, and strongest, raw materials available, Santa Cruz is able to make its CC level frames extremely lightweight, while maintaining outstanding impact resistance, exceptional stiffness, and just the right amount of finely tuned flex to cancel out trail chatter. Of course, balancing these factors requires true mastery of carbon fiber, and the design team at Santa Cruz has proven time and time again that their command of carbon fiber construction is unsurpassed in the bike industry. The result is a frame that will hold up to years of hard riding, will provide a comfortable ride, and will do so at a very competitive weight.
This build of the Tallboy includes some of the finest components available, beginning with a worthy suspension package from Fox: a 34 FLOAT FIT4 Performance Elite fork paired with a FLOAT DPS Performance Elite air shock. This setup offers a supple stroke, on-the-fly adjustments at the flip of a lever, and easy tuning. SRAM’s phenomenal X01 Eagle groupset provides the gear range necessary to venture into uncharted territory, while the Level brakes keep things under control as speeds increase. The Rockshox Reverb dropper post enables the necessary on-the-fly saddle height adjustment, while the Santa Cruz carbon fiber handlebar offers a perfectly tuned balance of stiffness and flex that simply surpasses many of the best aftermarket carbon fiber handlebars available.
Despite all that, our favorite part of the build may be Santa Cruz’s Reserve carbon rims, which are laced to a DT Swiss 350 hubset. The Reserve rims showcase Santa Cruz’s carbon fiber expertise, with a highly refined profile and reinforced nipple beads that nearly eliminate any chance of failure. And should you defy those odds, the Reserve rims are backed by a no-nonsense lifetime warranty—just like Santa Cruz’s carbon fiber frames.
- Short travel trail bike with a wild side
- 5in of highly efficient VPP travel
- Flip-chip enables compatibility with 29in and 27.5+ wheels
- 74-degree seat tube angle optimizes pedaling efficiency
- Longer reach shifts weight forward for better traction
- Carbon CC frame saves weight without sacrificing strength
- X01 Eagle drivetrain provides the ultimate bailout gear
- Reserve carbon hoops bring SC's carbon genius to the rim world