The Sea Otter Classic has always been a springboard for new Foes Racing frames and this year continued the trend with three all-new or updated aluminum platforms for model year 2013: a revamped downhill machine, two new trail bikes, and an aggressive hardtail for when any amount of travel is still too much.
The new 29in-wheeled version of last year's Shaver 'Ultra Trail' retains that bike's hard-hitting personality, single-pivot rear suspension design, 142x12mm through-axle dropouts and clever modular ISCG tab system for easy replacement in the event of a hard impact. The stoutly built rear end shortens slightly to 5-5.5in of travel but retains the same sensitive 2.3:1 single-pivot leverage ratio as the 26in bike.
Geometry is modified to suit the bigger wheels, too. Head tube angle steepens to 68.5° and the chainstays grow by an inch but curiously, the seat tube has slackened by 2° and the bottom bracket is also 0.4" higher on the Shaver 29. Claimed frame weight is 7.3lb (3.3kg) and suggested retail price will be US$2,399 with a FOX Float rear shock when it begins arriving in stores in eight weeks.
The 6.3-7in FXR is completely fresh for 2013, featuring a new monocoque-style top tube, a curvier hydroformed down tube, and a revamped 2.3:1 leverage ratio on the single-pivot rear end. The front derailleur switches to a direct mount style and the rear end is sized for 150x12mm through-axle hubs. Suggested retail price is $2,499 with a FOX DHX Air rear shock and projected availability is this September.
Foes' new FXR features a new linkage design with a 2.3:1 leverage ratio, 6.3-7in of adjustable travel and an 8lb frame weight
Downhill riders get a revised Hydro platform for 2013, which switches from a conventional round seat tube to a monocoque-style piece that Foes say is both stronger and lighter than before, plus a new tapered head tube to replace last year's 1.5in front end. The single-pivot rear end still offers 8.25in of travel and a low 2.3:1 leverage ratio for supple, bump-eating performance. Suggested retail is $2,599 with a FOX DHX RC4 rear shock.
Foes introduced the Hydro downhill bike last year and have already made a few big improvements for 2013
Finally, there's the new SSV 'play bike' hardtail for use with 140mm-travel forks. Strength and stiffness are the key traits here, with a massively burly monocoque-style top tube, a hydroformed down tube, a machined chainstay yoke and enormous stays. The threaded bottom bracket is set up for either a multi-chainring or single-ring setup with replaceable ISCG tabs and the rear end sticks with conventional 135mm quick-release open dropouts. Suggested retail price is US$1,199.
New from Foes is the SSV hardtail 'play bike', designed for use with a 140mm-travel fork