Last weekend at the Tweedlove Festival, Shand Cycles showed their latest creation; the Shand Ioma. It’s a steel hardtail with an ultra-slack 60° head tube angle, complete with a Works Components 2° angleset that can take it as steep at 62° or as slack at 58°. Hardcore hardtail, or what? Do correct me if you know otherwise, but we think that could be the slackest hardtail available on the market.
Ioma is Scottish-Gaelic for the word “multi” or “poly”, indicative of the Ioma’s many possible configurations. Designer, Brad Howe, gave us the low down.
The Ioma is the latest steel creation to emerge from Shand’s workshop in Livingston, Scotland. Constructed from a cold-drawn plain gauge Reynolds 631 tubeset complete with Paragon Machine Works head tube and drop outs, the Ioma may just be one of the slackest hard tails we’ve ever laid eyes on. It is pictured here with a 150mm travel Rockshox Domain fork with an axle-to-crown measurement of 578mm. That gives it a super slack head angle of 60°, but thanks to the Works Components 2° angleset it comes with, that can slacken off further to an incredible 58°.
Speaking reasonably, the main function of that angleset is to allow the rider to correct the bike’s geometry back to 60° if they choose to run a shorter travel fork. That said, designer Brad Howe tells us they would approve use of the frame with longer travel forks too, stating that the 58°, or even a 57° head angle, are still well within the structural parameters of the frame.
Shand take a semi-custom approach to sizing. The Ioma is available in S, M, L and XL, each with a seat tube length of 415mm, 430mm, 445mm and 455mm, respectively. For each frame size, however, there are three choices of top tube length and thus three choices of reach. Thus, there are actually 12 frame sizes to choose from. The top tube length options are 620mm, 630mm and 640mm. Reach comes in at 458mm for the 630mm top tube, increasing to around 466mm with the 640mm top tube.
Meanwhile, the head tube length is consistent and short at 105mm for all 12 frame sizes. The seat tube angle is kept at 76° across frame sizes, too, as is the chainstay length at 440mm. Brad tells us it “climbs like a goat”. Wheelbase on the XL with the 640mm top tube length is 1293mm.
Besides the wildly slack head angle, the Shand Ioma has another point of interest. The bike shown at Tweedlove had an eccentric press fit bottom bracket. The Ioma will be sold a a frame only, but also available will the the “adjustable pack”, which includes the aforementioned Works Components angleset, but also an eccentric 47mm Press Fit bottom bracket from Ride Works.
The eccentric bottom bracket with an elliptical orbit was custom designed for the Ioma with the aim of correcting the effective bottom bracket height for different wheel sizes. For a 27.5″ rear wheel, the recommendation is to run the BB in its highest position; for a 29er, the recommendation is to run it at its lowest point, compensating for the height difference in the wheels.
The other benefit of an eccentric BB is that it allows the frame to be set up as a single speed bike, allowing for the adjustment of chain tension. A 24mm version is available for Shimano axles, and a 30mm is available for DUB. Of course, the fore-aft adjustment of the eccentric BB will also impact on the bike’s effective seat tube angle. The range of adjustment at the BB depends on whether you are running the 24mm or 30mm option.
Rear-end dimensions on the Ioma are 148mm x 12mm. That, and the curvature of the Columbus Zona stays give clearance for a 27.5″ x 2.8″ tire, or a 29″ x 2.4″ tire. An internal IS mount is used to mount the rear brake caliper allowing for a maximum rear rotor size of 200mm on all frame sizes.
The Ioma has an internal cable routing option for a dropper seat post but, other than that, all cables are routed externally. However, as each frame is built to order, customers can choose to run those external cables and hoses however they please. The other advantage there is that you can have as many bottle bosses as you want, wherever you want (within reason of course). Living up to its name, the Ioma could therefore be your singletrack slaying machine one day, then a fully kitted out bike packing rig the next.
Pricing & Availability
Shand Cycles are taking orders for the Ioma now. Buy it as a raw frame with rear axle and dropout for £1195. The “adjustable pack” fetches you the frame along with the 2° angleset from Works Components and eccentric bottom bracket from Ride Works for £1295.
On top of that, Shand offer customers a one hour consultation for a custom paint job. For more information on the Shand Ioma, head to the Shand Cycles website.