10-02-15

Pyga Oneten 29 review

After 2 season of fun on the Pyga Oneten29 I took some time to write a review on this amazing bike.

Manufacturer description

The Oneten29 is our flagship trail bike – 110mm travel built around 29” wheels. A truly versatile trail machine, that’s fun to ride all day. This trail 29er is at home on your local singletrack or that multi day stage race you’ve been working towards. Designed with relaxed trail oriented geometry, its no slouch on the climbs, yet will have you grinning like an over sugared child on the way down your favourite single track.

Short chainstays allow for a playful ride, while the relatively high “anti-squat” properties of all of our frames provide a solid pedalling platform that really shines on technical climbs, rough sections and downhills. If you want one bike that can do it all, look no further – this is it.

Frame Details

The Pyga Oneten 29 has an aluminium frame with seriously shaped tubing throughout the frame. The low slung top tube and massive seat tube gusset immediately stand out and clearly distinguishes the Pyga from other bikes. This design provides ample standover clearance while retaining a long enough seat tube so that the seat can be positioned high enough for pedaling. 

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Out in the back the frame has relatively short chain stays with internal shifter cable routing and the brilliant Syntace X-12 through axle. The rear brake is unconventionally positioned on the seat stays through a beautifully machined Post Mount (PM 160) drop out with dual bearings in the pivot. The position of the brake on the seat stays is Pygas proprietary ‘Migrating Active Brake System’ designed to keep the rear suspension active under braking (which is often a problem with single pivot systems). To some this seems awkward and I still remember the bashing the system got from a lot of arm chair engineers when the first pictures of the bike where released. The systems does work really well adding a lot of control to the bike especially when going over brake bumps on tracks with heavy use.

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The suspension design is a single pivot with a rocker linkage and floating shock resulting in 110mm of rear wheel travel from a Rock Shox Monarch RT3 damper.

My frame is one of the first production frames released to the market (in 2012), that’s why it has the raw aluminum finish. Current frames are painted with anodized seat stays and modified cable routing (incl. Reverb Stealth routing). I have modified my frame to also accept a Reverb Stealth and I added a cable guide for the rear brake on the lower linkage. I have also deleted the cable guides on the left hand side of the top tube as these have become obsolete. The down tube guides have been modified to accept both brake and shifter lines.

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Bike Setup

I have been riding this bike since late 2012 and it has seen different setups over time. Currently the bike has a Sram X01 drive train with Race Face Turbine cranks and a 30T or 34T chainring. Front suspension is handled by a Rock Shox Pike RCT3 at 140mm of travel. The wheels consist of Hope Pro 2 hubs laced to either Arch EX of Flow rims depending on the terrain of type of riding. Maxxis tires ensure the contact with the trail (choice of Ikon, Ardent, Minion DHF, Minion DHR II or Shorty).

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The geometry has been slackened slightly using off set bushings for the rear shock.

 

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Braking duties are handled by Hope, previously by means of the Tech M4, currently by the Tech 3 E4.

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The cockpit has been a Race Face Atlas 50mm stem with a carbon SixC 10mm rise bar at 780mm width. I am now using a Hope 35mm stem with a Burgtec bar as a test, I do feel that I will likely be going back to a 50mm stem for longer, more XC type, rides.

 

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Climbing

Climbing is not the strongest point for the Pyga Oneten29, it will get the job done but not with the speed of an XC racer. It climbs best seated and at a steady pace, hammering uphill out of the saddle doesn’t really feel efficient. The reason for this is bi-fold in my opinion. One reason is the weight of the bike, the frame is no lightweight (more than 3kg) and this can be felt when climbing. The other reason is the 50mm stem that I have been running, I did notice that with a 70mm stem it climbs faster.

Despite the 50mm stem and slackened geometry (through bushings and 140mm travel fork) the Oneten 29 does manage really steep technical climbs well. The front wheel can be kept on the ground with ease and the rear suspension maintains traction over ledges and steps.

I tend to use the platform/pedal position on fire road and asphalt climbs, leaving the shock in the open position for technical climbing at low speeds.

I did notice a higher amount of pedal strikes when I started riding this bike.

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Trail Riding and Descending

This is where the Pyga comes alive.

Especially on faster downhills the bike really shines, making the best out of the bump eating capacity of the 29 inch wheels. Combined with a stiff frame the bike will go to the direction that the rider wants it to go. The rear suspension has a certain bottomless feel and certainly feels like more then only 110mm of travel. The long toptube and high reach number result in a roomy cockpit that makes is easy to move around. A short stem can be used without the bike feeling cramped. All of this results in a confidence inspiring ride. The excellent Pike fork certainly is a big contributor to the ride quality, providing support at all times.

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In tight, steep descents the longer wheelbase and big wheels do require a bit more rider input to move the bike around the bends. At the same time the big wheels do provide a certain level of security by making it easier to balance the bike at low speeds.

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The slacker head angle ,resulting from the longer travel fork (140mm instead of 130mm) and offset bushings, performs well without any real negative effects on the handling.

Nothing is perfect and there is always room for improvement. For me there are only a couple of shortcomings to the Pyga Oneten29. The higher weight and low mud clearance on the rear triangle being the things I would like to have improved the most. Next to that I would prefer a different lower headset configuration. As I like to experiment with geometry something that can except an angleset would have been my choice.

Verdict

The Pyga Oneten29 is a very versatile bike.  Depending on the type of riding I will fit different wheels, tires and gearing. These are small changes that really extend the range of use of this bike.

The Oneten29 is also more (much more) bike then it’s 110mm rear travel suggest. It can really rip the downhills and provide a lot of fun and control to its rider.

Over the past 2 seasons I have taken this bike to very different terrain and conditions. Long rides in the Belgian Ardennes, multi day racing in the French singletrack heaven of the Drôme, alpine excursions near Alpe d’Huez, enduro racing in Belgium and in Sospel (of Transprovence fame), I have done it all aboard my trusty Pyga Oneten29. 

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Want to get yourself a Pyga? Get in touch with Steven at Bike The World Belgium for your nearest (Belgian) dealer ( http://www.biketheworld.be/ ) or check http://www.pygaindustries.com/

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