Before my new bike (see my Ibis Ripmo Dream Build) this was my work horse. It's ridden the Barton Creek Greenbelt back trails (it's happy place) along with the rest of Austin's gnarly goodness, Flagstaff AZ, Bentonville AR, Western PA, and even shuttled and shredded Spider Mt. For an 8 year old bike that had two owners before me, this bike could do it all and did.

The frame is a 2012 Santa Cruz Blur LT2.1. At the time this bike defined the all mountain segment even though it was on the verge of getting passed by with the 29er movement, and the current long, low, and slack geometry trend. This frame is an odd duck in that it is a 26er with 135 QR rear drop outs, but it has a tapered head tube and ISCG-05 tabs.

The stock fork was replaced by the original owner with a Fox 32 Vanilla FIT RL with 140mm of travel and the blue coil. It has a straight steerer tube though, so it's running a reducer on the crown race for the Cane Creek 40 headset. This drives the compatibility filter on here nuts!

The drivetrain is SLX 1x10 with some OLD XT Hollowtech II 9spd cranks that I swapped out chainrings for a HOPE narrow/wide 32T middle ring and a RaceFace bash ring on the outer ring. So, it's a cobbled together mess but it works.

The brakes are my Hope Tech2 X2's with gold sawtooth rotors from the bike I had previous to this one. These things are over 10 years old and still are some of the best feeling brakes I've ever used...and they're only on their 2nd set of pads!! These brakes are why my Ibis has Hopes. They are like having ABS on your bike

The wheels are DT Swiss M-1700s that I got used and re-laced the rear hub to a DT Swiss EX471. One of my favorite videos is Aaron Gwin riding that rim all the way down after he flatted at the top. He rode most of the way down a WC Downhill course with the tire flapping around the frame and that rim held up. After seeing that, I figured it could handle anything I dished out. This wheel set basically comes with DT 340 hubs and their star ratchet. I meant to upgrade the rings to the higher engagement 54T ones, but I never did. This has been a rock solid wheelset.

For tires I've run anything from Maxxis Ardent front/Ikon rear combos to Geax Gomas front and back to Maxxis ADvantages and WTB Weirwolf LT's (discontinued RIP). It really just came down to what I could find good deals on and if I had a big ride destination to gear up for.

The cockpit is also kind of made up of parts I had laying around. The stem and spacers were from a swap meet, and the saddle was a take-off from a friends Pivot. The Easton Haven carbon bar was actually from my other bike which I bought for it's combo of weight and strength. It's held up very well. The dropper post is the newest addition to the bike and was only added a few months before the planning of my latest build. It's a PNW Cascade 125mm dropper with external routing since the frame is too old for stealth routing. I had a couple of issues installing this post. First, the seat post collar on this frame is pretty high up. I have the post bottomed out as far as it can go and the saddle is just barely low enough at full extension to be acceptable for my inseam. Second, there wasn't an obvious cable route on the frame. Luckily for this frame they put two different cable bosses for the front derailer on the back of the seat tube depending on if you ran Shimano or SRAM. I drilled out the SRAM boss and used it to route the dropper remote cable up to the actuator at the seat collar. lt works perfectly. The third install issue was with the remote itself. Initially the post came with PNW's Puget 2X lever. The ergonomics didn't work for me and it was sticking, causing my dropper to not lock down. I contacted PNW and received amazing customer service. I run an Oi Knog bell on the left side of my bar and it turned out that it was causing issues with the placement and functionality of the 2x lever. I was able to replace that remote with the LOAM Lever (for a price) and I've been super happy with the feel ever since. The guys at PNW were so easy to deal with that I chose to use a PNW post on my new build as well.

This bike and I have some really great memories together, but it's time to move on. Now the high schooler next door who's getting in to riding will be able to learn some things from this ride. Paying it forward.

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