Highball Carbon / XC 29er - Hardtail
- Frame Only : £1,699
- Complete Bikes From : £3,199
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There are still those times and places where the best way to light the fuse and blow everyone else into the weeds is by riding a hardtail. Bigger wheels have revived the venerable double diamond design, and by mixing the smooth rolling hoops with a feathery 2.4-pound carbon fiber frame, we’ve come up with a potent race weapon.
Anyone who complains about a bad day climbing while riding this bike needs to find another sport. The Highball is insanely light, razor sharp, nimble but surefooted, stiff as a plank, and designed to do two things: 1. Race. 2. Win.
- 29" wheels >
- Lightweight carbon fiber frame
- Tapered head tube
- 142•12 rear axle
- Drop dead gorgeous minimalism
- Frame weight - approx 2.47lbs
|Frame Size||Top Tube Length*||Seat Tube Length||Head Tube Angle||Seat Tube Angle*||BB Height||Wheelbase||Head Tube Length||Chainstay Length||Standover Height||Reach||Stack|
* Effective top tube
** Seat Tube length measured from center of BB to top of seat tube
All upgrade prices are relative to the standard component price.
note: weights are approximate
What front derailleurs are compatible with the Highball?
The Highball requires a 34.9mm bottom swing (high clamp), top pull front derailleur. Pretty much anything except Saint will work.
Can I use XX and other 2x10 cranks?
Yes, the Highball is compatible with all 2x10 and 3x10 cranks that we are aware of- including the 156mm q-factor XX cranks.
What size seatpost does it use?
The Highball uses a 30.9mm seatpost. Make sure it is always inserted into the frame a minimum of 100mm (regardless of where the minimum insert line on the post is).
What kind of headset will I need for my Highball?
The Highball uses a tapered headtube often called "mixed taper". This setup uses a standared 1.5" external lower cup (49mm bore) and an internal 1 1/8" upper cup (44mm bore). Almost all headset manufacturers make this product.
What is the torque spec for the front derailleur?
Tighten the front derailleur to 45 in/lbs.
What is the torque spec for the seat collar?
We don't provide a torque spec for the seatpost, because it really depends on what seatpost you are using. Some seatposts are slippery, and require more torque to stay put, and others are very thin- and can be crushed by overzealous tightening. Some are both slippery and thin... Make sure you use the Carbon Assembly Compound included with your frame, and use some common sense.
You will not damage your frame by overtightening the seat collar, assuming you have a 30.9mm seatpost in it.
Should I grease the headset cups when I press them into the carbon frame?
Yes, we recommend this. Do not use the Carbon Assembly Compound on the headset, as it will make it more difficult to remove from the frame.
Why does the Highball use a standard thread-in bottom bracket, when many of your competitors use press-in style (BB30, Pressfit 30, BB90, BB92, BB86)
It is true that there are some slight weight savings available with the various pressfit bb designs (exact weight savings obviously vary depending on system, frame manufacturing techniques, and crank model), but we don't feel this small savings make up for the inconveniences. We are still able to make a frame that is lighter than most of our competitors (2.45 lbs), while still using a heavier bb system. There are a number of disadvantages that exist with press fit systems:
1) Special installation and removal tools are required for these parts, including a headset press. This is not convenient for most home mechanics, and they are quite expensive. Traditional external BB's can be installed or removed with a simple $10 hand tool.
2) "Permanently installed cups". Shimano doesn't recommend removing and re-installing their press in bb cups (as they may become damaged), so moving parts from bike to bike is no longer an option. View Tech Document
3) Creaking or shifting bb's can be common with these systems. Since the bearing is pressed into a cup, which is then pressed into the frame- it can be hard to get all of the press fits snug- without being too tight on the bearing or too loose in the frame.
4) Reasonable tube sizes. One of the most commonly claimed advantages of a larger bb shell is the larger diameter downtube that goes with it. This may be an advantage on road bikes, where tubes can be increadibly thin and large for optimal stiffness. On a mountain bike, this area of the frame sees a lot of abuse from rocks and crashing, and needs to have a certain amount of wall thickness to survive actual use. Using what we consider a "safe" wall thickness and carbon layup, and a fairly typical tube diameter, we get an exceedingly stiff, light, durable product. If we used a larger downtube, we would either have a heavier frame (same wall thickness but larger diameter), or a less durable product (thinner walls and larger diameter).
5) Chain clearance. Take a look at some of our competitors frames with press in bb shells. The down tube comes so close to the chainrings that many frames have chainsuck guards on the downtube! In our mind, the chain should be able to fall off on a mountain bike and not get jammed between your crank and thin-walled carbon downtube.
6) Backwards compatibility: Many of our customers purchase a frame and build it up with their choice of parts, or parts from an old bike. By using a standard bb, we are compatible with everything without requiring confusing adaptors.
7) Chainguide compatibility: While it may seem strange to talk about putting chainguides on a hardtail, it is becoming more common now with 10 speed drivetrains. Thread in bb's mean the frame is compatible with bb mount chainguides. We like versatility....
What kind of rear wheel do I need?
The Highball uses a standard 135x10mm rear wheel.
What fork is recommended for the Highball?
In general, we recommend a 100mm fork for the Highball. The angles and BB height were designed to work in this configuration.
If you want to use your Highball as more of a trail bike, you can use a 120mm fork as well. This will slow down the handling and give a bit more descending control.
What size tire will fit?
This will vary depending on tire model and manufacturer, but in general the Highball will accept 2.2-2.3" tires.
What is the largest rear brake rotor that I can use?
The Highball can accept up to a 185mm rotor.
Can I put a QR seat collar on the Highball?
Absolutely. The frame takes a standard 34.9mm seat collar, so there are plenty of quick releases that will fit. Our favorite is ours, of course. You can purchase it on our online store..
How many water bottle mounts are there on the Highball?
Each Highball has two spots for water bottle cages- one on the top of the downtube, and one on the seat tube.