|Original advert, note the fork and disc brakes!|
There have been many things written about the Mountain Cycle San Andreas, pioneer, classic, icon, while all of these are true they have been extensively written about before, so here is only a brief history lesson.
Mountain Cycle was formed by Robert Reisinger and unleashed the San Andreas in 1991. He brought for the first time a monocoque full suspension frame with adjustable sub frame, suspension fork and disc brakes. Just one of these would of been remarkable but all of them together...
The San Andreas first came on my radar when a UK journalist called Paul Smith had one, it featured as a full page poster in MBUK and was/is the only picture of a bicycle I ever had on the garage wall. I loved the fact it looked like a 500cc GP motorcycle with the engine removed, ultra tech and ultra cool in a world full of steel rigid bikes.
In 2003 the company for which I work became the UK distributer for Mountain Cycle, so I had to have one. We sold the frame set in two guises, DH with a 190mm eye to eye shock (Van R or Van RC) or XC with a 165mm (Float RL or X-Fusion). So a San Andreas XC in red with an x-fusion coil shock (cheapest option) came my way.
|My first San Andreas, note 'official' VPS shock position|
When we took over distribution of Mountain Cycle the production had just moved to Kinesis USA, but most importantly all of their frames were all still hand made in Mountain Cycle’s traditional Portland home. The frame featured an up-rated cartridge pivot bearing, a new VPS new shock shuttle and was compatible with a new bolt on fork stop to prevent damage to the frame caused by triple clamps.
|VPS mount top hole, 165mm shock|
One new upgrade I have made that makes a massive difference is to swap out the old FOX Float to a ROCO Air LO, more modern damping keeps the back end in check and because the ROCO is a low pressure unit it has enabled me to lose about 50psi of pressure.
In summery the San Andreas is now old tech, it has a high pivot, it bobs a bit and doesn’t have much travel ... Of course none of these matters, cycling is about much more than that. In a world of big corporate cycle companies with instantly forgettable models the Mountain Cycle San Andreas still stands out today as something very special.
|note: 140mm fork set up, VPS mount second from the top, 165mm shock|
|What's better than one San Andreas? Two!|