Polygon Orrin Prototype
The February announcement that the Hutchinson United Ride team would be contesting the World Cup circuit aboard Polygon's Collosus downhill bike may have taken a few by surprise, but the Indonesian company is making a hard push into the high-end market with a lineup of smart looking bikes at competitive prices. Further proof comes in the form of two new carbon fiber prototypes that have been designed around 650B wheels: the 160mm travel Orrin shown here, and the lighter weight Karoo that uses a similar layout to offer 140mm of travel. While both are 2014 model year bikes that will have their official launch at this year's Eurobike tradeshow, Polygon was able to show us two frames that had come out of the mold only days earlier.
• Intended use: all-mountain/enduro
• Travel: 160mm
• Carbon fiber front and rear triangles
• Designed for 650B wheels
• Internal cable routing
• Post mount rear brake
• ISCG-05 chain guide tabs
• 66° head angle
• 428mm/16.8'' chain stay
• Target weight: 5.3lb/2.4kg
Polygon's 200mm travel downhill race bike uses their FS2 suspension design, a two-link, floating shock layout that keeps all of the bike's suspension components as low as possible in the frame. As the name suggests, the Orrin's FS3 design is an evolution of that layout, with two links that control a floating shock and an extremely low center of gravity. Pivot locations have been modified to better suit the 160mm travel bike's intention as a machine that can be pointed both up and down a hill, and the lower link no longer rotates concentrically around the bottom bracket. This latter fact not only helps to shed weight, but also means that Polygon was able to shorten the chain stays far beyond what would have been possible with the older design - they measure in at 428mm. Both the upper and lower links, which are single-piece units rather than being bolted or bonded together, rotate in the same direction to compress the shock.
How hard did Polygon work to shorten the bike's rear end? Check out the detail on the driveside chain stay (shown at right) that allows for it to be tucked up tight while still clearing the bike's chain ring. Polygon had originally planned to use a machined aluminum insert at the chain stay yoke but that would have added weight while also making for a bond between the carbon and aluminum that might cause trouble down the road. Instead, Polygon manufactured the area out of solid carbon fiber that allowed them to shape it how they wanted without having to use aluminum.
Like a lot of bikes coming out these days, the Orrin will feature both a 12 x 142mm rear end and internal cable routing that will make for smooth lines while offering more protection. Removable inserts at the entry and exit points should allow for easy, fuss-free cable installation.
The 140mm travel Karro closely resembles its longer travel brother. In fact, it uses the exact same rear triangle. This won't be a warmed over trail bike, though, as ISCG-05 chain guide tabs and a 67 degree head angle are on the bike's fact sheet.