Making my bike more responsive

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9/6/2017 7:13 AM

So recently I changed from 10" Fubars to 9.5" Hoder bars and it completely changed my bike, since then I've been curious as to how much more I could change my bike to make it feel less, slow or delayed I guess would be the term.
My current frame is a 13.4 I believe (21" Fit Savage) and I run 175mm DK social cranks, I'm about 5'11 So would it make much of a difference for me to step down to a 13" back end on a 21" frame, and get 165mm cranks? from what i read shorter back ends make manuals harder but I'm really going for more pop and better bike response all around.
please leave your thoughts below

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9/6/2017 7:36 AM

I don't know how tall you are you could go to a 20.75 and a shorter cs.

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9/6/2017 7:38 AM

You could also get skinner tires like 2.10 or something like that and lower offset forks will make your bike fell more responsive....

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

9/6/2017 7:52 AM

Longer chainstays = more pop. But the difference would be half a link, which you wouldn't notice after an hour of riding. It depends how you want it more responsive. One of the things that has most impact on how a frame feels is bb height, which often gets ignored. The higher it is, the easier to throw your bike around. Also a short stem and upright bars will make the front end twitchier.

The thing is, it's all personal preference. To me, super responsive bikes take all my confidence away, like I feel like I'm going to get sent off the bike all the time. Especially when doing a couple of cranks at something

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9/6/2017 8:29 AM

Will_Foxhall wrote:

I don't know how tall you are you could go to a 20.75 and a shorter cs.

I'm about 5'11 maybe a bit shorter

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9/6/2017 8:34 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

Longer chainstays = more pop. But the difference would be half a link, which you wouldn't notice after an hour of riding. It ...more

I always thought shorter back end led to more pop for some reason, the frame i'm looking at has an 11.5" BB height, I was also planning on stepping down to a 46mm stem.
I can agree about the twitchiness, I don't want it super sensitive and twitchy, I just want to find a happy medium of something quick but not overkill which sounds odd but hopefully makes sense

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9/6/2017 9:14 AM

I am about 6'1 and ride 20.6 frame mabey go with 20.25 or shorter.

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9/6/2017 9:55 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

Longer chainstays = more pop. But the difference would be half a link, which you wouldn't notice after an hour of riding. It ...more

bdh425 wrote:

I always thought shorter back end led to more pop for some reason, the frame i'm looking at has an 11.5" BB height, I was also ...more

Get a higher bb and you'll notice a massive difference. Short chainstays help with quick hops, but a long chainstays will give you the most height.
The only thing I'd really suggest changing would be bottom bracket height, 21" tt at your height isn't long, and the chainstays length isn't long either. A higher bb would give you quicker and higher hops, and quicker spins.
Higher bars make a bike more responsive, so another suggestion would be to put the higher bars back on

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9/6/2017 10:00 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

Longer chainstays = more pop. But the difference would be half a link, which you wouldn't notice after an hour of riding. It ...more

bdh425 wrote:

I always thought shorter back end led to more pop for some reason, the frame i'm looking at has an 11.5" BB height, I was also ...more

grumpySteve wrote:

Get a higher bb and you'll notice a massive difference. Short chainstays help with quick hops, but a long chainstays will give ...more

ill definitely look into the BB measurement, whats an ideal number I should look for?

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9/6/2017 10:56 AM
Edited Date/Time: 9/6/2017 11:06 AM

bdh425 wrote:

ill definitely look into the BB measurement, whats an ideal number I should look for?

Again its all opinion and personal preference, your height and build will have an affect on it just as much as your geometry changes, without changing the frame the only things you can really do to make it more responsive are things like changing the fork offset, a different stem can change how it feels if you go from a front load to top load as even though it may raise your bars back up to what your 10" bars used to be it will bring them closer to the pivot point which will change the "feel", lighter wheels and/or thinner tyres will do the same, what really works for one person might not be what works for someone else, the "type" of BMX you ride would also dictate what may be more preferential, ie, trails, street, park etc

even where you tighten the rear axle bolts in the dropouts can affect "feel"

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9/6/2017 1:53 PM
Edited Date/Time: 9/6/2017 1:55 PM

Get a shorter offset stem like 48 or below, and shorter offset forks 28mm or less. Cutting your bars down helps a lot too. That's a pretty responsive frame already. If you do all that, it could feel very different depending on what your riding now. Oh yeah and riding narrow tires helps a lot. Fat tires will slow you down.

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9/6/2017 4:30 PM

38 mm madera mast stem, 20.3 BSD ALVX frame, 160 or 165 mm cranks, and animal street forks with 15mm offset

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9/6/2017 6:29 PM

bdh425 wrote:

So recently I changed from 10" Fubars to 9.5" Hoder bars and it completely changed my bike, since then I've been curious as to ...more

Shorter CS, steeper HT, less fork offset and 170 (maybe 165) cranks. I can't ride 170's since my 3rd knee surgery, it needs more flexibility and extension. But, if you can ride them I highly recommend it. Faster response to cranks and easier to get up to speed. Plus, somehow mentally you seem to be able to go from trick to trick faster. Might be the same but you feel more "flowy" with shorter cranks and they seldom hit anything (as an added bonus).

Also, if you can shave some weight. Trim bars, trim axels, trim seat post, run slightly narrower tires (2.3F 2.2R at most). To me swapping out my tires made a huge difference.

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9/6/2017 9:30 PM

20.5-20.75 Frame, keep the 75.5 headtube, look for something with 13" or so chainstays, 45-49mm stem reach, short offset forks (26mm give or take). I would say no shorter than 170MM cranks since you aren't very short.

Also man light tires/wheels does a shit ton in my opinion. Lighter hubs on some G-sport birdcages with folding tires would make it feel super light

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Refs: Future FBM, Warchol2 WtfKennethXp Riversiderider TCbmx Riversiderider JakeSalbert

9/7/2017 3:37 AM

bdh425 wrote:

I always thought shorter back end led to more pop for some reason, the frame i'm looking at has an 11.5" BB height, I was also ...more

grumpySteve wrote:

Get a higher bb and you'll notice a massive difference. Short chainstays help with quick hops, but a long chainstays will give ...more

bdh425 wrote:

ill definitely look into the BB measurement, whats an ideal number I should look for?

11.7 or higher, depending on how responsive you want it. Although pretty much anything higher than 11.5 and you'll feel a difference. It's a much more noticeable difference than half a link, or even a full link from your chain

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9/7/2017 9:23 AM

bdh425 wrote:

So recently I changed from 10" Fubars to 9.5" Hoder bars and it completely changed my bike, since then I've been curious as to ...more

Gack2000 wrote:

Shorter CS, steeper HT, less fork offset and 170 (maybe 165) cranks. I can't ride 170's since my 3rd knee surgery, it needs ...more

So shorter cranks help gain leverage and get up to speed faster? I've also heard spins are a little quicker with them

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9/7/2017 9:24 AM

Spenlard wrote:

20.5-20.75 Frame, keep the 75.5 headtube, look for something with 13" or so chainstays, 45-49mm stem reach, short offset forks ...more

Ill look for those specs for sure, the only thing is i dont think i should run folding tires since im a primarily street rider

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9/7/2017 10:52 AM

try 1.90 tires
these are originally flatland tires but they work for street too. sooo good.
http://flatlandfuel.com/aresa-classtire.aspx

short offset forks will make your bike more responsive too. add front brakes and goddamn the fun will never stop
http://flatlandfuel.com/aresswitchfork.aspx

these say flatland fuel but trust me they're no different from any other fork. have fun!!!

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It’s all bmx

9/7/2017 11:49 AM

adamnmexican wrote:

try 1.90 tires
these are originally flatland tires but they work for street too. sooo good.
...more

I don't know, those forks are very light at 30oz, and not heat treated. I bet they flex a lot. For like $30 more you can get some real name brand forks that are heat treated and weigh 35+oz. Not saying they suck, because I have no idea. I had some original kink foundation forks that weighed that much, and they flexed a ton. I think that's why forks weight has been going up.

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9/7/2017 11:59 AM

S&m fast pitch forks , small tires , lots of titanium , s&m dagger frame

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9/8/2017 1:18 PM

Spenlard wrote:

20.5-20.75 Frame, keep the 75.5 headtube, look for something with 13" or so chainstays, 45-49mm stem reach, short offset forks ...more

bdh425 wrote:

Ill look for those specs for sure, the only thing is i dont think i should run folding tires since im a primarily street rider ...more

demolition momentum 2.20s are light and steel bead. good tires

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Refs: Future FBM, Warchol2 WtfKennethXp Riversiderider TCbmx Riversiderider JakeSalbert

9/8/2017 1:44 PM

So I'm about to get a new chain and I run my rear wheel at 14.5, if I slammed it would my bike feel better in parks and be a bit twitchier etc?

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9/8/2017 1:49 PM

BcBMX80 wrote:

So I'm about to get a new chain and I run my rear wheel at 14.5, if I slammed it would my bike feel better in parks and be a ...more

Depends how much room your dropouts allow you to shorten the chain. You'll probably notice a link shorter, not so much half a link.

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9/9/2017 9:38 AM

BcBMX80 wrote:

So I'm about to get a new chain and I run my rear wheel at 14.5, if I slammed it would my bike feel better in parks and be a ...more

What frame do you have that slams at 14.5? That's crazy long for a modern BMX. To answer your question, yeah of course it would. You must know that by now...

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9/9/2017 10:44 AM

Changing bike parts won't make you ride any better. Making a bike super responsive will sacrifice stability. You might not realise how much you like the stability of your bike until you've changed so much to get it how you think you want it, that you'll end up needing to sink more money into it trying to change it back. A well balanced bike is good for everything.

In the past 3 or 4 years since getting back into riding I've tried pretty much every style of bike and combination of parts there is (apart from flatland). Including a 21lb bike, a trails bike, and a super responsive street bike. It's taught me a hell of a lot of and I've spent a lot of effort (and money sad ) dialling my bike in to how I want it. Obviously not everyone will want their bike to feel identical to mine. But to get the bike how you want it you have to go to a few extremes and feel how much of a difference it makes, and what you like

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