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12 MIN READ TIME

THE VERDICT

You might want to get your tiny violins ready at this point, because this has been a pretty tough review to write. What do you say about three excellent frames, all guaranteed to make even the most hand-wringing Guardian reader feel a surge of patriotism, and all extremely well suited to their intended purpose, without typing a load of gushy nonsense? One thing I can say is that while they’re all very good, they would all favour a slightly different type of rider and terrain.

The 18 Bikes No 9 is the most thrashable frame in the test, and not just because it has a paint job that wouldn’t make you cry if you scratched it. While 18 Bikes is keen to play down its geometry, it’s still the type of design that some bike companies are only just starting to catch up with. It also manages to be a hoot to ride, instead of slowing everything down to bullet time. There are some issues with the size of frame I tested, mainly the clearance at the seat tube and the harshness of the rear triangle, but a longer model might be a taller person’s dream hooning machine.

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About Singletrack

Editorial: Wear Sunscreen Chipps lifts the veil on the uneconomic world of newsagent magazine sales. UK Adventure: Going Over To The Dark Side Shorter winter days mean you can do a dawn raid without having to get up too early. Classic Ride: The South Downs Blue skies, chalky trails and endless riding make for a perfect combination. Tom Hutton takes on the trails around Cissbury Ring. Column: Jason Miles It’s not all about chafing and suffering in Jason’s endurance racing world. Sometimes it’s about haunted helmets… International Adventure: Letting Go And Finding Flow Some journeys aren’t about the miles ridden. Amanda explores the trails of Denmark, while unwinding some of the twisty singletrack in her head. UK Adventure: My Grandad’s Head In A Jar Adam Batty gets rad with his dad and his dad’s dad. And all thanks to some electric bicycle help. Keeping Track Of Time At The Trans-Provence 2019 saw the final Trans Provence. Tom Hill looks back on what made the event so special, from the unique view of those riders not racing, but working the course every day. Column: Still Going After a mere 20 years, Chipps reckons his SPD pedals are just about needing a service. UK Adventure: Making It Up In The Lake District Drawing a line on a map and following it over the roof of the Lake District is certainly one way to see the Lakes. Follow Chipps and Nigel Page to see if it’s actually a good one. Bike Test: British Steel Not just designed in the UK, but cut, mitred and welded here too. Three aggressive hardtails on test from 18 Bikes, Shand and Stanton are put to the test. International Adventure: Verbier By Train Can we really appreciate the places we ride if we’re helping to destroy them by getting there? Mark took a low carbon approach.

Other Articles in this Issue


Singletrack
Now, how did those lyrics go again?
Sanny and Dene head out on a pre-dawn mission proving that winter shouldn’t be a barrier to fun.
They say variety is the spice of life – how hot do you like your spice?
Jason Miles takes a good long look at himself. With his eyes half shut…
Amanda takes a few days to ride and decompress in Denmark. Along the way she finds food, friends, trails and adventures, but most of all, she finds balance.
Adam Batty welcomes back a lapsed member of the mountain bike club to enjoy the views.
Tom Hill reflects on the phenomenon that was the Trans-Provence, and his part as a small cog in its machine.
Chipps gets soppy about a scratched old pair of pedals from the last century.
Nigel Page and Chipps strap on luggage and join forces again. This time to ride a completely made up North/South traverse of the Lake District.
Three contemporary steel hardtails made by hand in the UK from 18 Bikes, Shand and Stanton. And we mean made, not just assembled.
Price: £900.00 (frame only) From: 18 Bikes, 18bikes.co.uk
Price: £995.00 (frame only) From: Shand, shandcycles.com
Price: £699.00 (frame only) From: Stanton, stantonbikes.com
You might want to get your tiny violins ready at this
Mark and Vic look at a different way of getting to play in the mountains with bikes. By train.
Emma and Carly show how much fun you can have by being badly prepared and under-equipped in France’s bestknown mountain bike event.
Andi catches up with Damien from Production Privée, the enigmatic Andorran bike and component company.
Sometimes alcohol and high spirits can get in the way of a race to the point that some people let themselves down a little. So much so that we’ve toned this one down, to hide the guilty.