First look: NS Soda Air – Enduro or Freeride Bike?
For 2013 NS Bikes is presenting a new bike based on the revised Soda frame. The complete setups that were offered up till now were definitely on the hardcore end of the scale, not necessarily the best solution for everyone. Many riders who built the frames up themselves used lighter components and air shocks and this is exactly what the new Soda Air bike is about. The bike bridges categories and can play the role of a lightweight freerider or a heavy duty enduro bike. Tough, versatile and fun – are words best used to describe the Soda Air. It will cover a lot of ground – big-air, bike parks, downhill or all-day climbing.
The heart of this heavy duty workhorse is the super sturdy frame – not the lightest on the planet but it
really can take a lot more than your regular all-mountain rig. It features huge bearings, a super stiff rear end, adjustable travel and adjustable chainstay length. For 2013 the frame has been slightly modified and has lost some weight, but still remains as bombproof as always.
One of the key characteristics of the Soda is that it is extremely “jumpy”. Everyone who tries the bike immediately notices this difference when comparing it to a “traditional” bike with 6-7” of travel. At a first glance it’s hard to pinpoint where this is coming from, because the geometry – on paper – is pretty standard. But if you look closer, you can see that there are three factors: first of all the chainstay in the short position is really, really short. In addition, the axle path does not have a very rearward path. So, when your hammering berms, hitting a lip or pulling a manual, the compressed rear end stays short. Add to that a slightly degressive and then clearly progressive ratio and it all comes together to give that crisp, compact feel that really makes you want to fly over obstacles instead of plough through them.
More info: www.nsbikes.com/2013 Text & Photo: PM NS Bikes