Thursday, April 23, 2009

Niner W.F.O. 9

Besides forks, I also got to see what's hot in dual suspension 29ers at the Niner booth.  TheW.F.O. 9 is a 140 mm travel bike and according to a Niner representative, one of the only two 29ers to accept the HammerSchmidt internally geared crankset.  What makes compatibility difficult?  Besides some mounting tabs, the suspension linkages have to be arranged to make room for the unit and the suspension must also be optimized to work with the chain constantly in a granny gear position.  The suspension on the WFO. is unique in that the Constantly Varying Arc that the rear wheel travels on results in no chain growth after sag.  This improves power transmission through the chain during full use of the suspension travel range.  According to Niner, the dw-link suspension just can't handle it.  You'll also notice that the bike features a tapered head tube and this model has the longest travel fork available for 29'ers, a Marzocchi that was a collaboration between Niner and the Marzocchi company.

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