Named after a local DH trail network, I designed the Darkside to be the bike I always personally wanted for tearing up the Whistler bike park where I am lucky enough to ride most summers. It is the ultimate park bike. I’ve waited a few years for this bike, but good things come to those who wait!
I wanted a bike that first and foremost was fun and confidence inspiring to ride. But confidence for most people comes from stability, whereas fun generally comes from a nimble feel, so it is not as easy to achieve both as you might think. It took a lot of work, trial and error, and well… fun to dial in the frame geometry and ride characteristics, but I am incredibly happy with the result.
I designed the Darkside linkage to have a predictable but lively feel, similar to what you might get from a well-designed single pivot design, but with all the benefits that come from using the KS Link virtual pivot system. The benefits of this linkage over a single pivot are that it offers optimised active braking, tuneable leverage curve, increased lateral stiffness, improved axle path and direct actuation of the rear shock to reduce DU bushing rotation and friction. So you end up with very supple suspension at the start of the travel, which ramps up to give a nice bottomless feel towards end of travel while tracking and carrying speed well, and minimising pedal feedback throughout.
The short chainstays on the Darkside really make the bike feel lively, easy to manual, and results in a bike that is eager to whip, boost or scrub off jumps with style and control. When combined with the linkage you can brake later, carry speed better, pop off lips and obstacles and land big hits with confidence. Add to this that the Darkside has a fairly long front centre, reach and slack head angle and you have a bike that is lively and playful when you hang off the back, but a high speed race ready machine when you get into a forward attack position.
In my eyes this makes the Darkside a perfect park bike / playful DH race bike that will elevate your riding to the next level of style and see you charging hard down steep technical section with confidence… and most of all, it will put a huge grin on your face.
Travel – 180mm of KS-Link suspension optimised for playful DH / park riding
Short Chainstays – 16.5″ chainstays make the Darkside really easy to manual, whip and scrub, as well as rail round corners.
Progressive leverage curve – Optimised to get DH race levels of traction with a fun poppy and bottomless feel.
Taper Headtube – 44mm ¦ 56mm (1.125″ zero stack top, 1.5″ zero stack bottom) allows angle sets ad tapered forks
Hydroformed 7005 AL tubes – Increases strength and stiffness, and reduces weight
ISCG2005 – Latest standard in ISCG for chainguide mounting
Integrated fork bumpers – We have worked with ODI to offer interchangeable fork bumpers that protect your frame and fork during a crash.
Pedal neutral linkage – The suspension linkage has been optimised to result in minimal pedal kickback for a fun neutral feel
Internal ribbed stays – Increase stiffness for railing berms and holding lines through the roughest of trail sections, and boosting acceleration
Aggressive geometry – Slack angles, short chainstay, long front centre… all adds up to fun at speed
Tire Clearance – 26 x 2.5 or 650b x 2.5 (with 650b dropouts)
INA Bearing pivots – Fully sealed high quality bearings throughout
KS Link pivot system – Optimised suspension kinematics for a fast, nimble, aggressive and fun ride
Warranty – 2 years [original owner]
Crash replacement – Lifetime [original owner]
Frame is supplied as 150mm 26″ wheel size as standard.
650B Option – Frame can take 650B wheels with optional extra KS link Drop outs, however frame will be 142mm wide and NOT 150mm.