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The fact that Knolly built the Podium Mountain Bike Frame from no-nonsense, industrial-grade, 6066 series alloy is a sure sign that — unlike showroom bikes with matte paint jobs and the kind of retro-clashing color schemes you might see in a Winding Refn film — it's built to get gnarly. When that material is hydroformed and welded into a frame with a huge reach, dropped bottom bracket, and low standover height, it becomes a DH tank capable of confidently sticking lines across terrain that would make the weekend enduro club blanche.
Besides eating terrain, the Podium's 4xFour suspension is designed to hit three marks after you've left the shuttle and dropped in: traction, braking, and pedaling. Given the bike's purpose, traction is definitely the most important of these qualities, and the suspension is built to eat big hits and rock gardens while keeping the rear wheel glued. When the terrain gets too gnarly, the suspension also diffuses braking through pivots aligned to keep suspension live during panic grabs at the brake levers. Pedaling may be the least important element of a brute like the Podium, but Knolly still insisted on minimizing chain suck and maintaining as smooth a pedal platform as possible between DH lines.
Finally, the Podium is finished with a threaded bottom bracket, which is more expensive and time-consuming to produce, but the ride is worth it — especially for a bike designed for DH abuse. As advanced as press-fit bottom brackets have become, they still can't match the precision of CNC-machined threads. The confident seating and virtually perfect interface makes for more durability and — more importantly — less mysterious creaks and clicks. It also makes taking your crank off a simple, at-home job instead of forcing you to head to the LBS for a press.
- Item #KNO0002