Despite having a few bikes in the garage, there is always the place for a new niche bike. So whilst I really enjoy riding my Camber 29er full sus I did have the itch for a 29er hardtail that I had to scratch. Of course it was all Dave’s fault that I ended up with a new bike.
Dave’s fault? Well when he PSA’d the Moles to let us know about some cheap carbon bars, it started me thinking that I had enough parts in the garage to build a new bike. Of course all of this “make use of what I’ve got” got out of hand and I ended up with an almost completely new bike. I did use the Bontrager carbon bars, but not much else in the garage.
First thing required to go with the bars was a frame. After looking for a while for a Chinese 29er frame to put my parts on, I came across Pronghorn and decided that after reading some good reviews it would the good basis of lightweight 29er hardtail. I also came across the Light Bicycle wheels, which seemed to be too good not to go for. The final parts were a Manitou Tower Pro, a complete clearance sale bargain from Chain Reaction, and a 2×10 set up.
Pronghorn PH Carbon 29 build
|Frame||Pronghorn PH Carbon 29|
|Fork||Manitou Tower Pro (20mm through axle) 120mm travel|
|Wheels||Light Bicycle 30mm Hookless Carbon, tubeless with Specialised Captain tyres|
|Grips||Hope lock on|
|Seat||Fizik Gobi XM|
|Drivetrain||FSA 2×10 BB30 chainset,
10 speed XT cassette,
XT front and rear mechs,
XT gear levers
So what does it ride like? In one word – fast. Well that might be due to all the road miles I’ve been doing lately but the combination of one light bike, very light wheels and extra fitness has meant a blizzard of Strava PRs and smiles. I spent a happy Sunday morning hammering round the Surrey hills seeming to ease up all the hills.
I did also worry that the bike would be too “twitchy XC” on the steering front but after studying the Pronghorn website, I was happy that the steerer angle would be sufficiently relaxed. Maybe running the longest fork recommended – 120mm – helps, but the handling was super neutral and just encouraged more speed! Hopefully it’s going to be a good companion for many hot dry dusty summer rides.