2001 was a good year for Santa Cruz Bicycles and will be remembered as a turning point for them with the introduction of the Virtual Pivot Point (VPP) revolution. Prior to that, every full-suspension bike in the line was a single-pivot design. While they still build single-pivot bikes, since that time the focus has been on the VPP design.

But, like any suspension design, technology will continue to evolve and refinements will happen. For this year, Santa Cruz completely overhauled the Blur LT. As a result of this complete overhaul, many are calling it the Blur LT2 since it actually shares very little with the original LT other than the VPP. I’ve had my eye on the new Blur LT since it was introduced in the Spring, but didn’t get my hands on one until August of this year. Since then, I’ve been flogging the all-new Blur LT up and down the Wasatch Mountains. How does it ride? You’ll want to read on, my friend.

2009 Santa Cruz Blur LT LT2 Mountain Bike Review

About the 2009 Santa Cruz Blur LT

The original Blur LT was introduced at Interbike 2006. I took it out for a few laps and liked it overall, but the new LT2 is a completely different beast. With the growing number of 140mm trailbikes on the market (arguably the sweet-spot), the original LT design was quick to show its age. For some reason, the linkages developed more creaks than my grandma’s house and the frame wasn’t as stout as it should be for this type of travel.

So, Santa Cruz engineers went back to the drawing board to re-design not only the Blur LT, but the VPP suspension characteristics and linkages as well. The end result is the all-new Blur LT with increased travel, completely re-designed frameset with greatly-increased lateral stiffness, new pivot linkages (carbon upper/aluminum lower), built-in grease ports and revised suspension rates to give the bike an even better pedaling platform and a more bottomless feel throughout. This new VPP design is also now used on the new Santa Cruz Nomad for 2009 and will likely be added throughout the VPP lineup soon.

Here are a few more specs of the Blur LT:

  • 100% new frameset for increased standover and lateral stiffness
  • Revised VPP design with 140mm travel (up from 135mm)
  • Carbon fiber upper linkage
  • Aluminum lower linkage with built-in grease ports (gun included)
  • Built for a 140-160mm fork (140mm Fox Vanilla RLC 15QR as tested)
  • Built-in cable routing for adjustable seatpost
  • Bottle opener on rear dropout
  • Replaceable rear derailleur hanger
  • Tire clearance up to 2.5, but 2.35 recommended
  • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large (tested) and XL
  • Frameset MSRP: $1850 (powdercoat) or $2050 (anodized)
  • Complete Bikes MSRP: Starts at $3014

2009 Santa Cruz Blur LT LT2 Mountain Bike Review

Santa Cruz Blur LT Review

The anticipation has paid off as the Blur LT has delivered in spades. Lets dig into some particulars on how well this bike performed in all conditions.

The setup was the R-AM factory build-kit with the exception of a Chris King headset, ODI Oury grips, Syncros AM stem, WTB Mutano Raptor 2.4 tires and a 2009 Fox Vanilla 32 RLC with 15QR thru-axle. Being on the front of the 15QR curve wasn’t easy though. I had the fork in my hands mid-June, but it took a good 6 weeks before both the bike and 6-bolt Shimano XT hub arrived to be re-laced to the Mavic 321 hoop. A quick trip to Go-Ride.com and the crew had my front wheel laced up and ready to ride.

The all-white frame with the black Fox fork looks sweet. Plenty of compliments all around as people have gawked at it. It’s only the 2nd Blur LT2 I’ve seen in the wild, so they are still fairly scarce. Overall, the R-AM build kit is workman-like. The only drawback is a little bit of a weight penalty (still only 31 lbs.) but it’s far from tanky and comes with a reasonable price. Like most good bikes, the extra 1-2 lbs. is only noticeable on a scale. Once you hit the dirt with your game-face on, you’ll never know the wiser.

I did have a small issue with the Race Face Evolve AM stem. It arrived with one of the four faceplate bolts bent and unusable. I have yet to locate a replacement and Race Face has been reluctant to send one. It appears they have one on the way, so we’ll see.  It seems a small part like that should be readily available, but I’ve checked my LBS and Home Depot to no avail. Instead, I just slapped on a Syncros AM stem. This stem was also 90mm, like the Race Face, but with a 12-degree rise, so it provided a little more upright cockpit.

Onto the ride… Climbing, the Blur LT absolutely sticks to the trail like glue. The negative travel provided by the VPP design, extends into ruts while otherwise maintaining a nice platform for efficient climbing power. Long, sustained singletrack ascents of 1000 vertical ft. or more (American Fork Canyon, Utah) were easily tackled in the middle ring with only a few drops into the granny when things got steep or loose. I did notice that the front-end wandered just a tad more than I’d like, but it wasn’t unbearable and only really showed its face in the granny at slower climbing speeds.

I varied from the stock tires by swapping the Kenda Nevegals out for some WTB Mutano Raptor 2.4’s front and rear. Though they are 2.4’s, the width is very narrow, however, traction remained consistent in all conditions and are well-suited to this bike.

The Blur LT is very efficient–propelling me to the top of a local time trial climb in my typical 14-minute times. It’s definitely a solid climber.

Descending on the Blur was great fun. The rear suspension soaks up everything and makes any trail a playground. With the Vanilla 32 RLC and 15mm thru axle, the front-end tracked straight and solid in all terrain. This fork is a perfect match for the LT2. Hopefully it will be offered as a standard build option soon.

I loved playing with the rollers and berms on the trail and floating down tight, twisty singletrack with complete confidence. High-speed assaults are also stable and fun. The only “less than perfect” terrain for the LT are small, stutter bumps. It soaks up large hits well, but I found it a tad bouncy on stutters. With the adjustments on the optional Fox DHX Air shock, performance could be fine-tuned, but I was OK with how it handled.

The Large-sized frame fits me perfectly (5′ 11″ – 170 lbs) with a nice-feeling cockpit that put me in a great position for both climbing and descending. I really had a ton of fun on every downhill I descended–from fast, rolling singletrack to tight, technical descents.

Good Blur LT

  • One of the top trailbikes on the market
  • Can be had for a decent price (starting at $3100)
  • New VPP is a huge improvement in reliability and smoothness
  • Great climber… rear wheel extends into terrain anomalies
  • Fun and flickable on the descents
  • Chris King headset is worth the upgrade
  • Fox Vanilla 32 RLC with 15QR is perfect on this bike
  • With 140mm fork, there’s no need for travel adjustments to climb well
  • 185mm front rotor adds needed stopping power

Bad Blur LT

  • Small, stutter bumps aren’t as smooth as could be
  • Wanders a titch on slow-speed climbs
  • A little chain slap on vertical cross piece near dropout
  • Arrived with a bent stem bolt that I’ve been unable to replace
  • Mavic 321 rear wheel seemed a little flexy

2009 Santa Cruz Blur LT LT2 Mountain Bike Review

The Bottom Line: Santa Cruz Blur LT

Hooting and hollering comes standard with the LT. Your riding buddies may get annoyed, but you’ll surely have a smile on your face at the bottom of every descent. It’s also an excellent climber that pedals you efficiently to the top of any climb. The new Blur LT2 is a great example of what a trailbike should be. As tested, it wasn’t svelte, but on the trail, you’ll never notice it. If you can get your hands on one, you won’t regret it.

Buy Now: Visit SantaCruzBikes.com or a Local Dealer

About Author

A Seattle native, Jason developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded this site in 1999 --sharing his love of road biking, mountain biking, trail running and skiing. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.

61 Comments

  1. Jason,
    Excellent review. I have thrown out the Yeti as an option and am now seriously considering the BLT2 and the new Intense Tracer VP, both of which are amazing bikes. As far as sizing goes on the BLT2, you mentioned that you are 5’11” and rode a size large. I am 6’1″ and prefer to run a 90-100mm stem. Would you suggest that I look at an XL as far as sizing goes with the BLT2?
    Thanks again

  2. Hey Guapo

    In my opinion, the most important metric is the Top-tube length. I prefer a 23-23.75 inch top tube for my height. Sometimes that’s a Medium and other times it’s a Large. Do you know what top-tube length you have typically ridden in the past?

    For reference, the Large Blur LT2 has a 23.5 and the XL is 24.5.

  3. I just purchased an ’09 Blur LT and absolutly love it! I had the same issues with my ’04 Blur, with the creaks and no way to maintain the pivot points. The new one is quite as hec, has zerks for lubing the joints-especially the lower- and the 140mm travel shows! It also lost a few pounds. I was really suprised how well it climbs for a full-susp. bike. Out of the box it is the best ride I have purchased and the most versatile.

  4. I’m glad you’ve got extensive experience with the original Blur LT and can now compare it to the new LT2. A huge improvement eh? I got limited saddle-time on the original, so I never experienced the squeak-squeak. But, the new design is quiet and smooth. Get out there and enjoy it!

  5. How does this bike stack up against the new Yeti 575 or the Giant Trance X? I am looking to buy only the frame of either one of these bikes. I am putting Mavic Crosstrail rims on it and a XT group. Right now I am riding a xl Commencal Meta 4.0 and I find it a little big, would you recommend the Lrg of those mentioned bike frames? I am 6ft. Cheers!

  6. Hey Chris

    Fit is very personal and hard to judge based on height alone. I’ve found that I prefer a bike with a 23.5″ top tube (give or take .25″) and that’s what I typically go by. I’m a little shorter than you, so you may need an XL, but could easily ride the L Blur LT if you wanted to–it depends on your fit and riding style.

    I prefer a smaller frame so it’s more flickable and fun as opposed to stretched out and unfun. 🙂

    The Santa Cruz Blur LT2 and the new Yeti 575 are two of the best trailbikes on the market and you can’t go wrong with either. The Giant Trance X should also be a great bike, but I haven’t ridden that one. I did review the 2005 Giant Reign 1 and loved that bike overall.

    You’re on the right track with those three bikes. I can’t make that decision for you, but just know that you won’t go wrong with any of them.

  7. Hi Jason,

    I used to ride 12 years ago as a kid in a fashion similar to what is popularly defined as dirt jumping today. As such, my current ride is also 12 years old but remains to be a hardtail. I recently picked up riding again with a couple of friends. While we have covered mostly trail riding, i still enjoy a good wheelie and bunny hop whenever the conditions suit. I think my dirt jump days are firmly behind me mostly due to age and i am out in the market for a full suspension bike which could be either a 575 or a blur lt2. However, i cant help but be disappointed that would have to give up one aspect of riding which i enjoy the most. What are your thoughts?

    There are no big downhills where i live, however, it seems like the current train of thought is to go for a long travel suspension bike a the disadvantages are now seemingly less noticable.

  8. So, the one aspect of riding you think you may need give up with your new steed is dirt jumping? I’m not sure I follow what you feel you’ll have to give up.

    If you want to get a bike that’s both trail capable and downhill-capable (with potentially some dirt jumps mixed in), there are some frames that are overbuilt just for that purpose. Some that come to mind:

    Transition Preston
    http://transitionbikes.com/2007/PrestonFR.cfm

    Ventana El Terremoto
    http://ventanausa.com/frame_elterremoto.html

    Banshee Rampant 4X (may not be great on trails… more dirt jumping)
    http://www.bansheebikes.com/bikes/rampant.html

    I’ll keep an eye out for other options, but clarify what you’d like the bike to do aside from rip the local trails. Thanks!

  9. Hi Jason,

    Thanks for your prompt reply and congratulations on a great website that you have.

    I will clarify what i am specifically looking for in a bike:

    I am looking for a full suspension bike would work well in cross country conditions. At the moment, it seems that the industry is leaning towards all mountain bikes even for cross country conditions as the weight disadvantage between the 2 seems to be narrowing.

    However, i would like this bike to perform bunny hops reasonably well. So far, my brief, short and possibly inconclusive test rides of full suspension bikes such as the Santa Cruz Superlight, or the Yeti 575 seem to indicate that i would have little chance of getting decent heights on my bunny hops (greater than a foot or so, i can typically do 2 to 3 feet on a hardtail).

    I once rode a Gary Fisher Joshua 12 years ago that was a little light on the rebound damping. The bike was brilliant in bunny hops because one could actually feel the bike propelling itself into the air. While i would think that the rebound damping would have contributed to this, i cant help but think that the suspension design and geometry of the bike must also have contributed to this. If this is so, are there any bikes u could recommend that could possibly have the same sort(or close) of performance that could still perform reasonable well in cross country conditions?

    Many thanks again and Merry Christmas

  10. Gotcha… so VPP designs and suspension dampening has got you down (literally)? I know what you mean about not being able to hop so well on many modern bike designs–especially Virtual Pivot designs, which suck up the “spring” initiated by the rider prior to doing a bunny hop.

    If you want the most hopping ability, a hard tail would be your best bet, of course. I would also say to stay clear of any virtual pivot designs.

    While I haven’t really tested bikes for their “hop-ability” as of late (sounds like I may want to now), I can’t really give you much direction other than virtual pivot designs will suck up more of your energy than others.

    My 2002 Turner RFX (Horst with Ellsworth ICT) hopped like a dream, so if I were you, I’d look towards Ellsworth’s ICT design since it has a rather stout initial platform, yet still provides a cushy ride. Iron Horse will be licensing the ICT next year, so you may not have to shell out the $$ for a true Ellsworth.

  11. Thanks Jason. Sounds like i should go out and try to land myself a test ride on an Ellsworth. I am surprised that i rarely read about this issue though (the need to bunny hop) as it is very useful in clearing unforeseen obstacle such as fallen logs.

  12. Yeah… I’ll keep it more on my radar.

    Funny you should mention, I recall an instance on my 2002 Turner RFX that required some quick-thinking and tall hopping to avoid serious injury. I was hauling down a trail at a pretty good clip and I came around a corner to see a huge fallen tree that stood about 2-feet off the trail. I had no choice but to hop like my life depended on it. I remember my rear wheel barely tapping the trunk as I hopped on over it. Adrenalin does a body good, but that was a split-second from being disaster.

    I hear your feedback loud and clear. 🙂

  13. Those are the moments we live for in mountain biking 😛

    I test rode a Trek Fuel EX which is pretty close to what i am looking for. The suspension design resembles that of the ICT on the Ellsworth and Turners. I found that the bike did not soak up the rider’s effort to yank the front wheel high off the ground, and neither did it soak up much of the foot and hip action required to pull the back wheel off the ground. Yet, the suspension remain subtle when riding over bumps.

    I am very excited to test ride an Ellsworth/Turner right now, perhaps because the suspension designs are rather similar as u have mentioned.(although in detail they are probably miles apart) Unfortunately where i live, they are only available in frame only. Ironically, the biggest draw back of the trek is that it is not available in frame only.

  14. Yup… the high rocker arm design will typically provide a solid initial pedal stroke that’s conducive to jumping.

    If you want a Turner like that, you should hurry up because next year’s will use the DW-Link. I’m sure you could find some excellent deals on a 2008 Turner 5-Spot frame right now.

  15. “the high rocker arm design will typically provide a solid initial pedal stroke that’s conducive to jumpin”

    Can u elaborate on this?

    Also, do you have a review on the Trek Fuel?

  16. High rocker arm bikes would be: Old Turner Design (08 and earlier), Ellsworth, Kona, Trek ABP (Fuel, Remedy). I’m referring to the top suspension rocker arm.

    And, unfortunately, I haven’t had a chance to ride the Fuel, but I’m hoping to this Spring.

  17. I havent seen anything on Blur LT2 vs Mojo SL which bike do you think is the #1 of the 2,as far as all around do it all race on sunday ride monday etc…

  18. Hey Vern

    Both the Blur and the Mojo are awesome bikes. As far as suspension vs. suspension, I prefer the DW-Link by a hair over the VPP design, but not by much. However, I prefer the geometry of the Blur LT2 for all-mountain riding over the Mojo. As spec’d, the Mojo I rode had a 140mm fork and so did the LT2. I would feel much more comfortable bombing down fast and rocky singletrack on the LT2 than the Mojo, but if you want something fast and furious (racing-wise), then the Mojo would be the trick.

    It’s really splitting hairs between the two. I think the Mojo SL with a 150mm fork would be as versatile as the Blur LT2 is with a 140mm fork, but that might make the Mojo a little less XC-ish. Is there any chance you could ride one or the other? You couldn’t go wrong with either one, but I hope I was able to shed some light on my experiences with both designs.

  19. Your right on the money, I ride a 04 blur want to stay with what has been working 4 the last few years but like skis you never no until you demo . TY

  20. I would recommend an Astrix Stryke for an all mountain bike…definitely not for weight weenies though. This bike does just about everything. Mine weighs in at 37.15 pounds…climbs good,takes drops, and plows through the rough stuff with no problems.

  21. Richard… thanks for the input on the Astrix. I have yet to ride one, so I can’t back your sentiments. However, by today’s standards, 37 lbs. is overkill for an all-mountain bike. The frame is overbuilt and weighs 9.1 lbs vs. 6.3 lbs for the Santa Cruz Blur LT. I’d venture to say it’s more of a freeride bike than the Blur LT, but I may be wrong. I for one am not stoked to pedal a 37 lb bike all day long anymore. 5 years ago, yes, but today… not so much. 🙂

  22. Jason,
    thanks for your insights on the blur –
    Im shopping the blur lt, the Intense Tracer and 09 Turner 5.5 – have you ridden the 09 tracer or turner?

    thanks,
    jeff

  23. @Jeff… let me first congratulate you on your selections. You can’t go wrong with any of the above bikes. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to swing a leg over the Tracer or 5.5 Spot, so I can’t help you much.

    You’re really splitting hairs between those three, so I can understand your difficulty in making a decision.

    If you’re going to spend the coin on something you’ll want for a long time, the Intense or Turner will be the ticket. Have you ridden any DW-link bikes? Every one I’ve ridden has been excellent, but the new VPP design on the LT and the Tracer is a huge improvement. Very tough call… one that I’m not willing to make right now. 🙂

  24. thanks jason, (re your reply from 2-3-09)
    I thought I detected from one of your posts that you bought an 09 blur lt-?
    thats why I thought you had some interesting reason for passing on the intense or the turner.

    thanks tho,

    jeff

  25. I did purchase the Blur LT last Fall as my personal steed, but personal steeds don’t last too long in my house… the LT was an awesome bike though. Just got to make room for new 09 bikes to test.

    Regarding passing on Intense and Turner, they are a bit more expensive and just weren’t in the budget for this season.

  26. after riding both bikes Blur Lt2 and mojo SL ,I went with the mojo ,the lt did handle better at high speed, but the mojo felt like u were riding on a cloud going down, and an angel going up THIS THING HAS WINGS.for crosscountry u cant go wrong , For me this was a no-brainer but for someone that wants a dh-xc bike Lt all the way

  27. Great revewi, thanks for posting. I just ordered my new blur, I’d like your opinion on the size i’m ordering. I’m 5.11 190lbs. I felt very comfortable on the medium frame and the bike shop thought that was the right size for me too. I thought that was fine until i saw you were on a large. I know its about personal preference, but does it sound like im going too small?

  28. @Nick

    Definitely personal preference. I felt very comfortable on the Large, but I’ve been known to size down on some frames from time-to-time. You’ve really got to get to know the typical top-tube measurement that you prefer. I know I like mine in the 23.5 range so I can have a shorter stem.

    If you want a super-flickable bike the Medium should be just fine. Out of curiosity did you try the Large?

  29. Yes, I just went back today and tried the large (old blur tho). The medium definetly felt better, felt like i could english the bike a bit more than the large when i need too. But since i’m kinda new to the sport so I don’t want to make a rookie mistake of thinking smaller is better. Like when new skiers buy big comfy boots. Got another question now if you don’t mind.

    The shop mgr is trying to get rid of his 2008 bikes and offered a trek remdedy 8 for 3k instead of ordering the Blur. From the blur descriptions I read, its exactly the bike for the type of riding i ride. Techincal, mild dh and earn my turns. But that remedy is loaded, for only 3k. Any thoughts?

  30. If it’s comfy, it’s all rider preference. Don’t feel pressured into buying another rig though either.

    The 2008 Remedy 8 has the new ABP suspension design, right? If so, I’ve heard really good things about that bike. It doesn’t have the clout of a Santa Cruz on the trail, but if it’s spec’d anything like the 2009 Remedy 8, that’s a dialed-in bike. What fork is on the Remedy?

  31. Yes, it has the ABP and seems to be the same setup as 2009 with the Lyric 115-160mm fork. Both bikes weigh about the same, 30 lbs so its hard for me to tell if the extra travel on the Remedy will kill my climbing. Remedy stand over isn’t as good as blur (2 inches more). I can’t really compare the ride since they don’t have new blurs yet, all I can really go off right now is reviews.

  32. The new LT2 is a great bike… it’s too bad you can’t do a side-by-side. It surprises me that they don’t have any LT2’s in stock actually. They’ve been available for a year now.

    Is the Remedy your size, or is it a stretch? The spec on the Remedy 8 sounds sweet though.

  33. Yeah, the component group is what is causing my second guessing. The medium is a close fit. Top tube is just under an inch bigger than the medium Blur. The stand over, on paper is 29.5 inches, i’m a 31 inseam. Since i like the feel of a small bike, i guess i like flickability. Does all the extra travel on the remedy cut down on the flickability, or is that just my perception?

  34. Wow… I’m surprised at the lack of standover on the Remedy. What size? I think you’ll be just fine with the Blur in the Medium. For a freeride bike, I typically like it a little smaller because it does feel more flickable.

    The Remedy should have a solid pedaling platform and still remain flickable. Could be a perception thing.

    Honestly, you can’t go wrong with either bike.

  35. Jason, thanks so much for your help. Buying a new bike turned out to be equal parts fun and stress. Decided to get the medium Blur. I’m sure my first descent will wash away the stress part.

    Again, great review, very helpful.

  36. Jason,
    finally, finally received my new 09 blur lt! (after 6 weeks) swapped out small block 8 for nevegals, and am testing out selle max light saddle. but – no water bottle mounts! my local ride is 6miles, so no camelback necessary. do you have any suggestions?

  37. Hey Jeff… glad you got the new LT… excellent choice. But, yeah, the lack of water bottle mounts is kind of lame for quick rides.

    There may be an actual product for this, but what about attaching a cage to the back of the seatpost using zipties? So long as you don’t have to re-adjust the saddle and if you use a small bottle, it just might work.

  38. Jason, good idea! under the seat not good for dropping the seat on descents, but “under” the down tube is working with a piece of innertube to protect the frame and keep it from sliding.
    thanks!

  39. Hi Jason,
    How do you think the Blur LT2 will ride with Lyrik U Turn 115-160? I have been waiting my LT2 since May and it’s now in the country there is an issue with the fork I requested. I asked for Pikes – sold out. I asked for Revelations – sold out. Not my choice seems to be Lyriks or 32 Talas. What are your thoughts?
    Cheers

    • Should ride pretty well actually. With the ability to drop it down to 115 on the climbs, the head-angle should be good for steep climbs. I dig the Rockshox Lyrik and I think you’d like it too.

      Alternatively, the Fox 32 TALAS 150 with 15QR would be a stellar match for that bike, or even the Fox 36. Lots of options… don’t despair that you can’t get the Revelation or Pike.

  40. Thanks Jason. Appreciate the help. Think its the 32 Talas but only 140 still it’ll be good. I hear the Fox forks need more servicing than Rock Shox. This could sway me ha ha.

    Thanks again

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  42. Jason,
    Great review. I know its a while since you have been on this bike but I was hoping to get a few thoughts from you. Currently I am looking at either the Carbon LT, ALU LT or a Nomad. Thinking that even if i get a Blur i will still put a Fox 36 TALAS up the front as well. Not terribly sure if i should get the Nomad for just a little more beef and stiffness for when the going gets tough or should just get the Blur for being able to build it up a bit stronger and not have as much of a weight penalty.

    What are your thoughts on sizing? I have heard that they are a little on the small side and at 5’10” i am on the cusp of being on the medium or the large. I would prefer to be running a smaller stem for a bit more directness at the controls. Should i be looking at the large or grab a medium with a shorter stem say 70mm?

    Cheers

    Damien

  43. Damien… you’d be most comfortable on a Large for sure. I’m 5’11” and the Large is perfect with a 70-90mm stem. Whether you go carbon or aluminum, you’ll definitely enjoy the ride. Make sure and spend some coin on a good set of wheels to go along with it.

  44. Thanks for the reply Jason.

    What do you think about the Nomad Vs Blur dilemma?
    It will depend on what the minister for finance will let me spend but the nomad is a little cheaper for me if that makes any sense but the price i can get a Blur for is pretty darn good as well. (I am in Australia where bikes especially are rather expensive)

    As this will be the bike i have for the foreseeable the last thing i want to do is get the wrong frame. On the plus side with the amount of players in this section of the market i am happy that i have narrowed it down to 2!

    Cheers

    Damien

  45. “Minister of Finance”… ha! I know that game and it’s good to be in good standing there, my friend.

    If you are set on getting a 36 up front, I’d go with the Nomad. While it will provide a little extra cush on the LT, I’d say the head angle would be a little slack for responsive handling.

    That said, I’m completely guessing as I rode the LT with a 140mm fork. However, I felt the front end wander a little bit with a 140… But, with the TALAS, you could drop that thing down a bit. I dunno man… it’s really a hard call since the bikes are so similar.

    I guess I’d just go back to my original thought… Fox 36 on the Nomad and Fox 32 on the Blur. I think that’s the proper setup for each rig.

  46. Thanks for your advice, though i think i am slightly more confused now than i was before!!! Ha!

    Hopefully i will be able to test ride one of them soon to form a better opinion on the issue.

    • Sorry to confuse you… that’s just my take. The LT is really built around a 140mm fork while the Nomad is built around a 160mm+ fork. Both are confident all-mountain bikes but both are pretty similar actually. I’ve seen a few LT’s with a 36 up front, so I know it’s kosher, but I just don’t know how it rides.

  47. I found the sizing questions on here quite interesting. Im looking at a BLT2 at some point in the near future too and am having the M vs L debate. Im 5’9″ so you’d think a M would be best. Problem I have is I have a really long back so top tube length is quite important. I currently have an ’09 SC Chameleon in an L and that has an even longer top tube than the L BLT2 at 600mm. I run this with a 100mm stem and find it perfect. I think I’ll end up with the large LT2 as well, but dont want to make the wrong desission. Hmm. Good review by the way.

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  49. Just thought I’d share that this very review bike has been hitting terrain from 15500k above sea level in South America to 700ft above sea level in Illinois…and keeps on giving. The original front triangle met an unfortunate ending with a tree, the hangar is now helicoiled to the rear triangle, the paint is missing all over the place, but it just won’t give up..!

    I’ve done lots of upgrades along the way, but my recent swap to a 2011 Talas 150mm gave the bike all kinds of new life. I’d recommend it to any Blur rider with some all mountain terrain – 150 is great up front on this bike.

    Anyway, I spent a lot of time trying to find the best bike out there, but at the end of the day this bike has been killer each and every day…even when ripping down terrain well beyond XC/All Mountain. I don’t know if it’s the best, but it’s one of the best investments I’ve made and we’ll leave it at that.

  50. Matt

    Sounds like your LT2 has been sufficiently loved! Glad you’re still liking it more and more. It’s amazing what a new fork will do for a bike… the 2011 Fox 32’s are amazing!

  51. Jason, I have a fitting question:
    Four years ago I have purchased a Medium Blur Classic. As soon as I got it I have changed my front fork to a Talas 140 and a longer up right stem, and set the seat as far back as possible, to accommodate my long legs. Weight of the bike was 26 lbs (due to XTR components). Going downhill was great, going up was not as efficient (however, the bike was so light !!!). I did not pay attention to that until last weekend, when my friend noticed my feet went further than my knees on the climb. Then, I tried a Large Blur. The Blur (33 lbs) climbed like nothing through steep roots … I could not believe it, while my Medium Blur Classic (26 lbs) was jumping all over the place, front wheel popping. Then I analyzed the size of the Medium Blur Classic, I noticed my body was going too far back on the seat. There is no more adjustment I could do on the bike to properly fit on. So I am now looking at a Large 2005 Blur LT frame (sitting in my garage). Would it be crazy to jump from a medium to a large? I am only 5 7”, but have long arms and legs (32”). Based on the Santa Cruz size chart, I am definitely a Medium … though it is obvious to me that I need more space. What would you suggest? Thank you!

  52. Laura… I don’t think you’re crazy for wanting a more properly-fit bike. Santa Cruz bikes are notoriously-small. I ride a Large (5′ 10″) and the Medium is just too dang small for me. You’re a good 4″ shorter than me, but it sounds like your longer legs are maxing out the Medium.

    In short (err… tall), you’re not crazy.

  53. I finally went to a bike shop where they did a bike fit for me. They used a medium Mojo SL (beautiful bike), and recommended a long stem. For now I will give the large BLT a try and fing the answer on the trail. Thanks a lot, Jason and by the way, GREAT review!!! Happy trails! L.

  54. I rode a 2011 Blur Lt with 650b wheels. Since I never rode the LT with 26″ wheels, I can’t give you a review. Yet, I can tell you I loved the way the 650b wheels felt. What a confidence booster! I am torn between the LT2 with the 650b wheels and a 29’er (Transition Bandit 29). I am going to hopefully demo a Bandit 29 soon. One question: the LT will come with a Fox Float 32 140mm fork. Will the bigger wheels have an adverse affect on the geometry? The bb height is high already, add the 650b wheels, and it gets higher. Although I didn’t really feel any top heavy-ness after riding the LT for two days, I was just wondering if you had any thoughts on my situation.
    Mr. K

    • You are the first person I’ve heard of riding the 650b’s on the LT, so it’s hard to say. Sorry for the lack of help, on the 650b’s. If you like the LT, why not go with something in the 120mm range as a full-on 29er. There are tons of great options in that range now that I’d suggest taking a look at.

  55. Well, I bought a 2012 SC Blur LT 2.2 w/ 650b wheels. Stan’s Flow rims with Nevegal tires. Fox Talas 36. I went for my first ride today! Beautiful!! I just need an adjustable seat post. I am waiting for the new KS Supernatural that is coming out this Spring. I was worried about bb height, bigger hoops, and bigger fork. The bike feels fine. It needs some tweaking, of course. Do you know how the head angle changes with the 160mm fork compared to the 150mm fork?
    Thanx, Mr. K

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