Zoceli has been teasing their handmade steel 29er Naosm full-suspension enduro bike for over a year now. But after a number of iterations and prototypes, Czech freerider, designer & frame builder Martin Saida seems set to offer his unique short-link, virtual pivot enduro bike to a broader audience.
Zoceli Naosm steel 160mm full-suspension 29er enduro bike
We’ve gotten more used to seeing new full-suspension steel bikes in recent years, but designer/fabricator Saida and his Zoceli bikes certainly didn’t take the easy single-pivot way out. Instead, they go the more complex, tunable route of a short-link four-bar. The result is better rear axle path and shock leverage control, thanks to its effectively variable main pivot point – call it a virtual pivot, but not VPP for any patent attorneys listening.
That allowed Zoceli to focus on building super stiff front & rear triangles, connected together with machined aluminum linkages rotating on durable bearings. So essentially since October of 2019, Saida has been ironing out the kinks in prototype-after-prototype… refining linkages, shock curves, welding tolerances with that thin-wall steel tubing, and of course how best to build in a bottle opener.
A quick side note on naming… Saida has opted for simplicity, if a bit of tongue-in-cheek. In Czech “z oceli” essentially means made of steel, as all of the bikes are. And this bike’s name “na osm” means here for eight referring to Saida’s comment that eMTBers say they’ll go for ride for a beer, so why not just make it 8 instead of just one. Drink responsibly of course, in the pub that’s at the bottom of every bikepark lift after the last run, or in the impromptu #vanlife campground that pops up in lift-served parking lot every weekend.
That kid’s bike you’ll find down the page, “na nanuk” means for an ice cream pop. And lastly, that next gen freeride prototype, “do bordelu” would lead you into a mess (literally: to a brothel) after you jump it off a cliff.
And back to the Naosm… yeah, that’s why there’s a stainless steel bottle opener above the left crank arm.
The 29er Zoceli Naosm all-mountain / enduro bike is welded from butted, thin-wall Columbus chromoly steel tubing – now with a new custom-machined 1.5″ tapered headtube.
Rotating on all sealed cartridge bearings & alloy linkages, the frame delivers 150mm or 160mm of rear wheel travel, depending on shock stroke of 230×60 or 65mm – paired to a 160mm or 170mm fork.
Available in four stock sizes with nice long & slack geometry, claimed frame weight is 3.9kg without a shock (L) – built up around 16kg complete. Not meant to be a superlight for sure, but to stand up to abuse.
The frame features a pressfit BB92 bottom bracket which might drive some steel bike fans crazy, but is said to be crucial to getting the strength & stiffness in that busy area of the frame. It doesn’t get ISCG tabs as standard since Saida says most riders don’t use them, but ISCG05 is available as an option.
A 27.5″ wheeled version of the Naosm is expected this spring.
Other custom built steel MTB options…
If you need something even smaller, there’s the 100mm travel kid’s shredder built on 20″ wheels – Nananuk, at 1.9kg without its air shock.
And this wild prototype 29″ freeride gravity bike with 180mm of single-pivot rear wheel travel, driving the shock on a sliding rail similar to the old Yeti 303 4X & DH bikes – Dobordelu.
Zoceli also builds custom XC & trail hardtails too.
Zoceli Naosm availability?
As of now, you still have to wait a bit longer for the Zoceli.ca website to pop up. In the meantime, you can always reach out via Zoceli’s Instagram where there’s also an email contact, to pre-order a frame.
Or you can even check out the trail clothing company Shredwear.cz where Saida and company will kit you out while you wait for him to return from riding to weld you a bike.