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**Reviews

Compo rides again!

It’s not often a bike firm comes up with a radical reshape of bike geometry, and it’s even rarer that it comes with a paintjob that wouldn’t look out of place on a Dungeons and Dragons box.

Here be Dragons

While Canadians rave on about hardcore singletracking bikes designed for the Vancouver “North Shore” trails, On-One / Planet-X designer Brant has developed the Compo for the extreme singletrack round Todmorden. “Compo was designed for the rides that I do regularly. The terrain I ride a lot is rocky, steep and technical, with long tricky, almost trials-like climbs that tax your brain and concentration as well as your legs and lungs. But I didn’t want a design that was only good for going up hill. I wanted suspension – but just front suspension – and as much of it as possible. I wanted the frame to be strong enough to handle jumping, crashing and hard landing. I wanted a bike that was more versatile than the Jack Flash, lighter but still strong.”


Compo enjoying a night out of the tiles, but no sign of Nora Batty

As you’d expect from Brant it’s a lot more radical than the usual “twitchier steering and a few more gussets” ‘hardcore hardtail’ bikes wheeled out by most manufacturers. Steep seat and head angles make for very quick responses but the short top tube puts more weight over the front wheel for cornering and climbing traction. The bottom bracket is also hoisted high to clear Calderdale boulders and ruts. Essentially the bike won’t rear up on steep technical climbs and when you’re descending you’ll be out of the saddle and off the back anyway – a position made easier by the forward saddle set up.


RAD bike pedigree. Eastern made in Easton tubing.

The front end of the bike uses Easton’s box – round section RAD tubeset for maximum strength, as well as a gusset to the front of the extended seat tube. The Compo also features the “Brunel bridge”, an assymetric chainstay bridge that allows mud clearance for up to 2.7″ tyres while still keeping the rear end short. And if you’re worried about breaking it, warranty is fairly simple. “Standard Planet-X warranty, if you break it within two years, we’ll send you a new one. Simple as that”.


Big braces mean big strength. Isambard would’ve been proud.

As for the name? “It’s a tribute to Last of The Summer Wine actor, Bill Owen. His character, Compo, rode around the moors of Yorkshire on a bike. That’s what this bike does too. This isn’t one for the rider who wants a nice sensible bike to ride for hours across the Howgills in his buffalo jacket. This is a bike for the rider who wants to hit the trails hard. A rider who enjoys riding. Not a rider who simply pedals his bike around. If you like twisty singletrack, rocky climbs and descents, and pushing the limits of your components, Compo is perfect for you.”
And all this frameset joy can be yours for £499 from On-One.

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