Charge Duster frame £350

Cool and compliant

BikeRadar score 3.5/5

Nobody has done a better job of establishing a super-cool brand image recently than Radstock-based Charge Bikes, and the bikes themselves are quality performance pieces.

The Duster is their chromoly trail hardtail, based around high-spec double-butted Tange Prestige tubing – a brand that old-skool mountain bikers will know and love.

The geometry, with a 71° head and 73.5° seat angle, is classic too, and the reinforced head tube means you can stick in a longer fork to add some stability if you want. Either way you’re getting a well-balanced and eager bike that’ll eat up the trail miles.

A skinny 27.2mm seatpost and the natural twang of the Tange tubing gives the Duster a sting-saving skip and hop feel when you rattle through the rocky stuff.

While it’s not cheap, at under 5lb it’s reasonably light, and the next generation frames will use a lighter and more lively feeling double-butted rear end. The graphics can be complemented with Charge’s ever-growing accessory collection.

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