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Revealed: Ultralight Tomac Carbide SL Full Susp Mountain Bike

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From Tomac: Over three years in development, the Carbide SL is the ultimate in lightweight, stiffness and pedaling efficiency. At a scant 4.4 pound frame weight with DT Swiss carbon shock, it’s one of the lightest XC full suspension bikes on the market, and certainly the stiffest. The Carbide SL can be hammered through anything an XC rider or racer could throw at it.


  • 90mm rear travel
  • 4.4 pound/2000 gram frame weight with DT Swiss shock, large size
  • Optimized carbon fiber front triangle, individual lay ups for each size
  • High modulus carbon fiber with aluminum dropouts
  • Shaped aluminum chain suck protector.
  • Low stand over height with plenty of seat post adjustability
  • Only three sets of bearings means easy service
  • Accepts dual water bottles on all but the small frame
  • Available in S, M, L and XL

Click the images to enlarge (more after the break) and read “more” for additional info and component specs…


The Background
Let’s face it, the buzz on carbon has every bike company out there diving into weaves and resins at an alarming rate. The result is a plethora of poorly though out, designed and executed carbon full suspension bikes. Some may be light, but lack the stiffness. Some may be stiff, but lack the lightness. It seems no one got the formula right…until now. Introducing the Carbide SL, the ultimate in lightweight and stiffness.

It’s no real mystery why weight is a critical element of a bicycle, but stiffness is often a far secondary consideration. It’s really unfortunate, because it translates into greater rider control, improved durability (a stiff package means the bearings aren’t being side loaded) and better suspension action. Being stiff also gives the Carbide SL versatility. Bikes that are overly flexy may be good enough for a two hour XC race, but can’t really handle a rough XC ride. Our goal with the SL was to make a bike that was stout enough for real punishment.

But stiffness and lightweight don’t just come easy. It took three years to develop the SL, and in the end, it’s a masterpiece of hand construction. Additional layers of carbon on the bottom of the down tube and top tube work to distribute loads evenly, stiffening layers on tube sides (when they have the greatest effect in bending) reduction lateral flex, box section top, down and seat tubes to counter lateral bending and rounded tube-sides counteract torsional loading and specific lay-ups for each size. These are just a few of the reasons for the winning combination.

And that’s just the front triangle…the rear triangle is the area that typically sees the majority of flex. The Carbide SL features an all new carbon swingarm. By design alone, the fully triangulated swingarm, attached to the front triangle with a compact hollow-forged link, provides a high level of stiffness. But with focused use of high modulus carbon fiber, we were able to maximize the stiffness without adding any extra weight.

Sold as a frameset at $2599 and a complete bike model, the Carbide SL 1, at $5499.


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