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  • Santa Cruz Bicycles - Highball Carbon CC 29 XX1 ENVE Complete Mountain Bike - 2017 - Matte Black/White
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  • Santa Cruz Bicycles - Highball Carbon CC 29 XX1 ENVE Complete Mountain Bike - 2017 - Matte Black/White

Santa Cruz Bicycles Highball Carbon CC 29 XX1 ENVE Complete Mountain Bike - 2017

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    • Matte Black/White
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    1 Review

    Details

    Just enough of a good thing.

    We always thought the "too much of a good thing" adage was a bunch of nonsense, especially when it comes to XC speed. The superlative build kit of the Highball 29 Carbon CC XX1 ENVE Complete Mountain Bike indicates Santa Cruz Bicycles agrees with us. It combines what may be the most optimal carbon lay-up schedule in the knobby tire world with a set of ENVE M50 Fifty hoops. Does that amount to too much weight loss, stiffness, and speed? Nah, we don't think so. It's telling that the inclusion of SRAM's flagship one-by drivetrain is kind of an afterthought on this build, but when all that carbon steals the limelight, even the new 12-speed XX1 Eagle can pale in comparison.

    The Highball 29er's frame is a single-piece layup of carbon fiber instead of a jigsaw puzzle of individually-cured carbon tubes. This allows Santa Cruz to wrap the fibers continuously around structurally important junctures like the head tube and bottom bracket, strengthening the frame, dissipating the force from impacts and pedaling load, and allowing for comparable strength with less material. Translated into trail talk, this means it hits the bricks when you stomp on the pedals, dampens high-speed chatter, and holds lines like a cat on carpet—all with a low-weight that makes any full-suspension bike look like a bloated downhill-only machine.

    The Highball does somewhat address the lack of rear suspension with a diminished seatpost, slimmed down to 27.2 millimeters. While this doesn't quite equate to the square-edge hit capabilities of the Nomad or Bronson, it does help to eat up chatter that will otherwise accumulate over the course of a long ride. Up front, the 29-inch model has a sharper head tube angle than the Highball 27.5 so it dances nimbly through switchbacks and technical sections. Although it has longer chainstays than the 27.5 version, The Highball 29er actually has a shorter wheelbase, courtesy of that head tube angle, which contributes to the confident handling when quarters get tight.

    Finally, Santa Cruz's approach to the carbon layup process deserves a quick mention before we sign off. The carbon is compacted from both inside and out, eliminating voids, preventing delamination, and creating a smooth interior. While that level of aesthetic perfection is a nice idea, even if we can't see it, the real-world benefits of a perfect interior include no resin pools or unintended material abnormalities, which can structurally compromise a frame over time.

    • A cross-country bike built for the most demanding racer
    • Steep front end stays on point while grinding out climbs
    • Exhibits nimble agility when the trail turns crunchy
    • Top-tier Carbon CC construction drops weight and stiffens up
    • ENVE rims add speed and subtract grams
    • SRAM's superlative one-by drivetrain turns it up to 12
    • Few companies continuously reshape the industry like Santa Cruz
    • Item #SNZ00B5

    Tech Specs

    Frame Material
    Carbon CC
    Fork
    RockShox SID RLC
    Front Travel
    100 mm
    Headset
    1-1/8 - 1-1/2 in Cane Creek 110
    Shifters
    SRAM XX1 Eagle (right only)
    Front Derailleur
    n/a
    Rear Derailleur
    SRAM XX1 Eagle
    ISCG Tabs
    no
    Crankset
    32 t SRAM XX1 Eagle
    Bottom Bracket
    English threaded
    Cassette
    10 - 50 t SRAM XG-1295
    Chain
    SRAM XX1 Eagle Powerlock
    Brakeset
    SRAM Level Ultimate
    Brake Type
    hydraulic disc
    Rotors
    160 mm Avid Centerline
    Handlebar
    Santa Cruz Carbon Flat Bar
    Handlebar Width
    750 mm
    Grips
    ESI Racer's Edge
    Stem
    Syntace F109
    Saddle
    WTB Silverado SLT
    Seatpost
    Syntace P6
    Seatpost Diameter
    27.2 mm
    Wheelset
    [rims] ENVE M50 Fifty
    Hubs
    Industry Nine Torch
    Front Axle
    15 x 110mm Boost
    Rear Axle
    12 x 142mm
    Tires
    Maxxis Ikon Tubeless Ready
    Tire Size
    29 x 2.2 in
    Pedals
    not included
    Recommended Use
    cross country
    Manufacturer Warranty
    lifetime on frame

    Tech Specs

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    Turned me to a dirt guy

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    As a refined roadie for 20+ years I am happy on light, fast, stiff, european steeds. Somehow I got turned around and my last few races have been on dirt. Heaven help us all. It took a pretty rad bike to do it and I have more to say about the highball than you probably want to hear. Lets just say if you want to know more you can email or call me here kylebrown@backcountry.com 801-204-4699. Light, fast, fun, sums it up.

    Turned me to a dirt guy