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Santa Cruz Tallboy alu long-termer: Built up and ready to ride

Santa Cruz Tallboy alu long-termer: Built up and ready to ride

Last week we excitedly took delivery of a Santa Cruz Tallboy aluminium frame, for a latest long-term test project. It’s usually tricky picking a candidate for our long-term test fleet, but there was no hesitation in this case.

As soon as Santa Cruz released the eminently more affordable alu Tallboy, following the massive success of the carbon model, we were straight on the blower to Santa Cruz’s UK distributor Jungle.

As soon as it arrived we quickly set about building it, wanting to get it ready for the summer with a packed calendar of weekend rides and events to look forwards to. The Tallboy is going to be our pick of choice for these rides, with everything from 12-hour solo attempts to shorter cross-country evening races and long lazy trail blasts at the weekend.

Here’s the full detailed specification (some bits will change as we settle in with it, but this is our current setup)

Size large Santa Cruz Tallboy aluminium with Fox RP23 Kashima shock
Magura TS8 29er fork 120mm travel 15mm bolt-thru
Shimano XTR race groupset in 2×10 guise
Shimano XTR disc brakes with 180mm front rotor and 160mm rear
USE Sumo Carbon seatpost and aluminium 80mm stem
Mt Zoom carbon flat handlebar 690mm
Shimano XT pedals
Fulcrum Red Power XL wheels
Kenda Slant Six 2in tyres (currently fitted with inner tubes)
3T lock-on grips
WTB Vulcrum saddle
SRAM 10-speed chain
KCNC disc rotors
MT Zoom titanium bottle cage

The office opinion is that it looks great, and that it somehow manages to look a lot less like a 29er than some 29ers. We put that down to the well shaped tube profiles and nicely proportioned layout.

All that remains is to get riding it, and see if, in the transition to aluminium, the Tallboy loses any of the incredible performance that has made its carbon sibling one of the sought after bikes around at the moment.

  1. Jehosophat

    I wonder how many people will put full XTR on the alloy version! SLX/XT somewhat more likely…

    Reports on the 2×10 will be interesting… Some people complain of insufficiently low gearing with 3×9 or 3×10 on 29’ers…

  2. David Arthur

    Well, you might have a point Jehosophat, but I don’t think XTR should only be confined to expensive carbon frames.

    Haven’t done the sums on the complete build yet, but will do

    Not had a problem with 2×10 yet, sure there are occasions when the few steep climbs on my local loop require some stiff pedalling!

    1. adrian winsor

      Since riding a 2 x 10 Niner Air 9, my legs have got stronger. The loss of ratios equivalent to say, 2 gears, over my 26r, is noticeable on climbing, but over the months I actually feel my power output has improved on the climbs and it is no longer an issue. I seem to remember reading an article some years ago about so many more gears making it too easy for us…and am inclined to agree. Less is more, as any SS nut would definitely testify to!

      1. Prenolah

        Prosche’s latest reslaee isn’t a state of the art automobile, it’s a luxury bike. Made out of lightweight carbon fiber, the bike is a perfect cruising model for those willing to spend a pretty penny to bike around town. The bike also has luxury features such as a monocoque construction to give riders a heightened level of stability while biking. Read more

  3. coolie

    hi, after a 29er , looking at the whyte T129S ! ANY IDEAS
    i trail ride , marathons and alldays ! any ideas

    regards coolie

  4. Colorado Tallboy

    I just bought the Fulcrum Red Power XL 29’s for my Tallboy Al as well. How do you like the bike and the wheels? How much does your rig weigh?


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