For some time I’ve been planning a burly trailbike build around a Norco Optic frame. The Optic is designed as a highly efficient trailbike, ready to hang on with XC racers on the climbs, but has a little more stability and capability on the descents.
My riding style is gravity-influenced; while I can appreciate a good technical climb, the best part of any ride is when I point the bike downhill. My aim with this build was to keep the travel reasonably short (140mm being the maximum recommended travel for the bike), but laterally stiff. The goals: A slack head-tube angle, big brakes and tires, wide bars and brake/shift/dropper post lines long enough to throw some tricks if I find a jumpy trail.
The bike was built with Spank’s Oozy trail 395+ wheels. I’ve had the opportunity to work with these wheels before, and was excited to work them into a build. They are amazingly stiff, handling like many of the carbon wheelsets I’ve tried in the past. Two thumbs up.
Powerful brakes are super important to me, and I’m used to oodles of stopping power. TRP’s Slate T4 brakes provide all the power I need to get me out of trouble; the 4 piston brakes are powerful enough that I’ve dropped down to a 160mm rotor in the rear.
I opted for a Sunrace cassette (as opposed to converting the wheels to an XD freehub body) as I wanted to try it out. Very impressive so far. The three-ring carrier for the largest rings is a great design feature, limiting the chances of the cassette cutting into my freehub body under power.
I set up the cockpit to match the proportions of the Norco Range I’m used to. Spank’s Vibrocore 800mm bar is stiff enough to match the rest of the bike, but forgiving enough to make up for the lower suspension travel from my usual rig. I look forward to giving it a good test on rough local trails, where my hands are usually useless after a day of smashing through brake bumps.
DMR’s V-Twin pedals are the final step to make this bike truly a trail-monster. These pedals are super burly, and can be set up with pins to compliment the SPD-compatible clip mechanism. I set the adjustable-height plates to grab my shoes exactly, and the lock-in power is impressive!
This bike has me all kinds of excited for long summer days exploring west coast trails. If this build has piqued your interest, check out the following products, available through your local Live to Play Sports dealer!
Spank Oozy 395+ wheelset
LTP part number: 252437-01 / 06
MSRP: $ 999.99
TRP Slate T4 brakes
LTP part number: 250391-01 / 02
MSRP: $ 175.00 / ea. (no rotor)
DMR V-Twin Pedals
LTP part number: 253175-01 / 08
MSRP: $ 229.99
Spank Vibrocore 800 bar
LTP part number: 252333-01 / 04
MSRP: $ 149.99