Cannondale Flash 29er 2 29er Hardtail

DESCRIPTION

  • Frame: Flash Alloy 29, Si BB30, double butted
  • Rims: DT Swiss X470 29
  • Hubs: Cannondale Lefty SL, 32 hole front
  • Spokes: DT Swiss Competition
  • Chain: KMC X9 9-speed

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 17  
[Jul 31, 2013]
Nico

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Frame, wheels, fork.
Brakes
Light

Weakness:

Tires
Not so good component for the Price (ex: cranks)
Would have preferred a 2x10 setup

This is a very good bike. Frame is light, stiff and very nice (looks like a carbón frame, shaped are worked). I measure 1.80m but I had to take a M frame which fits perfectly.

Wheels WTB i19 are quite light for a bike of this Price, which is good for a 29er. They come tubeless ready (stripped sealed) which is very good, but it costs me a lot to put them tubeless, imposible with floor pump (with Schwalbe RR tubeless ready), the tires are really loose so there is no good sealing before popping. Could not do it on a gas station pump, I had to remove the valve core and use a 6 bars compressed air hose, and now it s fine. Wheels are quite stiff.

WTB nine line tires are OK but pinches a lot and are not so grippy, this bike diserve better tires.

Brakes are really good. The problem is thar Storm SL rotors are too much "holed" and makes noise because the pads (7.3, magura worst quality) are entering the holes... The solution is to chamfer the pads, it Works fine but you wouldnot expect doing that on a 2000 USD bike.

Bike is comfy, I cannot be sure it s due to the SAVE system or to the 29ers.

Crank is basic shimano, I would have preferred a BB30 as the frame comes ready. Stock BB (shimano BB51, non drive side) died after 2 months, I think it's a bad luck, I changed them for BB70.

Lefty is really stiff and nice. Needs a time to break in. It's so good you forget you have a fork, but still I find the Fox plushness feels better (but not necessarely IS better). Front Wheel is difficult to disassemble but You don't need to remove it to change a tire!

cannondale components are good (seatpost, stem, bar...)

So this bike climbs well, descend well, it's stiff but quite comfy, can handle XC racing or trail riding, and the lefty is the perfect touch.

[Apr 12, 2013]
Andrew Devlin

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

This is for the 2013. QUICK. Amazed at the speed this thing picks up. Feels super light & turns well. Left works great for the intended purpose of XC. This thing climbs like crazy. I feel 2x fitter on this thing.
Got a great deal from my LBS :) Love the looks & strange looks from people wondering where my Rt fork is ;)

Weakness:

Ground clearance, low Bottom bracket. Watch out on rocky trails as I found out last week at speed. The brakes do not have much feel but stop you (will upgrade as I am picky with breaks & feel). Stock tires are great on single track & pick up speed great, but they don't work well on rocky stuff.

Great XC bike. You will fly over the trail & eat up the up hills (until it gets technical) . I am coming from an All Mountain Bike so my reference is from that angle. This bike has blown my mind on the right XC trails :) super fast & great handling. Would love some more ground clearance but I will adapt. It has made me a better rider by needing to pick my lines rather than ride over everything on my All Mountain. Now I am getting to the top of the hills fresh & having more fun riding. If you are a XC ride you will love this bike. If you like more aggressive trails you may want a back up too. I would not want this to be my only bike (unless XC is my only ride) Overall Awesome from what it is made for & looking forward to trying my hand at some races this year!

[Sep 13, 2012]
craneneck
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Handling is predictable and stable even in tight fast single track. Surprisingly bump complaint (for a hardtail). Lefty fork is excellent. Lefty lockout feature is easy to use and great for long road/gravel sections. X7, X9, Avid spec mix gets the job done.

Weakness:

No tubeless option with stock Sun rims. SRAM crank scratches easily, it looked 2 years old after a few rides. Jury is still out on stock Schwalbe Rapid Rob tires. Jokes about the "other half of your fork" from your riding buddies.

I really struggled with the decision to replace my old FS 26". I needed a fast bike that was comfortable over long distances and could handle tough single track gracefully. The Flash has lived up to the challenge. Cannondale highlights the short wheel base and tight handling on their website. I completely agree, despite feeling like a big bike (in size large) it rips through turns confidently. Also, like many 29" hardtail bikes, it's an excellent climber. Even on quick ups on rocky terrain, the rear end sticks to the ground without any drama. Finally, this is a versatile enough bike that you'll feel perfectly comfortable riding around town one day and then another day racing along side some higher $$ rides. With that said, this is a go-fast bike, it might not be comfortable for more casual riders.

[Sep 02, 2012]
xxx
All Mountain Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
Strength:

I love Cannondale frames, Lefty (generally amazing, but not enough travel on this bike)

Weakness:

AVID brakes! Lefty with only 90mm travel is really weak! For XC okey, not for all-mountain. Shame on Cannondale

With a longer fork it might be an amazing all-mountain mtb. Why is everybody using f.... Avid brakes???

Similar Products Used:

F2000SX

[Jul 08, 2012]
Matt
Racer

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Looks, weight, and components are a great match. This bike would have been perfect with a 2X10 setup.

Weakness:

Bottom bracket came loose after 3 rides. Rear brakes needed adjusting after the first ride.Seatpost creaked until I pulled it out a greased it. Probably overlooked by the guys at the bike shop. Grips are no good and will be the first thing I replace.

This is my first 29’er and first lefty fork. I have been riding a carbon fiber, full suspension bike for the last 8 years. Trek Fuel 100 and most recently a Top Fuel 9.9. I was looking to return to an aluminum frame hard tail. I was also wanting to try this 29’er thing. After 100+ miles on this Cannondale Flash 29’er 2, all I can say is wow!! I am impressed. At 6’4” this XL frame fits me perfectly. The specs are perfect. This bike climbs fast, rolls over anything the Florida trails can throw at it, and is very impressive for a mid level bike. I was initially skeptical of the left fork, now I am a believer! It is better that any Fox or Rock Shox fork I have ridden previously. It soaks up the bumps and provides the perfect amount of feedback. The frame is perfect and I have hardly noticed that I am riding a hard tail. The SRAM shifter/derailleur combo works great. The Avid brakes work great too! I had to re adjust the rear brake after 40 miles, but no problem.

Similar Products Used:

Trek Fuel, Specialized Stumpjumper, Gary Fisher.

[Jun 21, 2012]
Buck
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

"Flash" says it all.
2012 Alloy Flash 29'er 2
It is light! Brakes are great. Lefty lock out makes it really rigid when needed and lock out is really easy. 10 spd. cassette nice. And of course the Lefty is wonderful. All good. I love it! (My Flash is perfectly silent.)

Weakness:

@ 6'4" the XL stock cockpit is a little tight. I have the saddle position tweaked, now need to work on the stem and bar, which seem too low for me (though I'm starting to get used to them). The grips suck.

I loved my Jekyll, but it was old and the Lefty blew. It made more $ sense to get a new bike than repair the old (though I probably will but can now take my time). I had no idea what a difference switching to a 29'er hardtail would make. As if the 7lb weight difference was not enough it is also remarkably comfortable. I can't describe the ride - it is like the Flash is pulling me - this bike just flies. My first ride on my standard mtb loop was 10 minutes faster and I wasn't trying to go faster!!! My first road ride on my standard Blue Ridge Parkway ride was 10 minutes faster!!! I could/can not believe it. I don't think I have ever passed another rider, but yesterday I dropped four fit looking guys riding full suspension bikes on a hill. That was great! :) Once I get my position completely tweaked I think that I and this bike are going to have a long, good time together.

Similar Products Used:

Previous bike was a C'dale Jekyll, which wore out. It was 33+ lbs, the XL Flash is 26 lbs. :)

[Jun 14, 2012]
Jesse
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Lightweight, excellent control with the Lefty, climbs like a ski lift!

Weakness:

A little to much flex around the bottom bracket, squeal from rear brake when not even engaged (likely due to flex), Schwalbe tires aren't "tubeless ready".

I'm 6'1"/205lbs and I ride a 2012 XL frame (the white with orange and black looks sharp). The bike weighs in at 26.2 lbs. with Stan's No Tubes and Crank Brothers Mallet 2 pedals (orange/black pedals match nicely). All else is stock (SRAM X9 rear X7 front derailleurs, X7 shifters, crank, chain, Elixr 3 brakes, Sun Ringle Rims, Schwalbe tires)

I can only compare with my previous bike which had 4-5 inch travel full suspension. However, the Flash rides every bit as smooth as the full squish. It climbs so much better it's ridiculous. I really like how it tracks through turns and the taller tires seems to make it much more stable. The Lefty is remarkable even considering it is 90mm which doesn't seem like much compared to my original free ride bike (something like 140mm travel). The lockout is easily accessible without the handlebar mechanism. This is my first time running Stan's too and I really like it (once the bugs are worked out...the stock Schwalbe tires are a weakness with Stans, they take twice as much sealant).

My only complaint is that there seems to be a lot of flex in the alloy frame. Even with the BB30, the crank area flexes a good bit. It may make for a smoother ride, and considering it climbs so well, I won't hold it against the design (I am very disappointed that Cannondales are not hand made in the USA anymore). Besides, I shaved like 9 pounds compared to my hold bike, which is definitely noticeable positive. The only time I really notice the flex is when I take off from a dead stop and really crank on the pedals to get going.

Overall, with the 29er wheels, lighter frame, and Stan's No Tubes...I am in no way regretting going to a hard tail from a full suspension. The Lefty is every bit as good as people say and I look forward to getting another 8 years out of a top quality bike.

Similar Products Used:

Former bike: 2004 Trek Liquid 25 (Free ride full suspension 26er)

[May 31, 2012]
machine4321
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Upgraded to this bike from a $700 bike. All I can say is it is worth every penny. When looking for a bike i was compairing this the scott scale and stumpjumper. The others had a slight advantage in some componets but didnt have the same quality in the fork. The lefty is an absolute marvel. It sounds weird but I dont notice it working. Just plush, never to soft and have never felt it bottom out. Stiff, very very stiff. The first time I hit the front brake i noticed the positive feel. The stiffness was also very noticable while turning and just tracks amazing.

The front end is very very light. The back end a bit heavy in comparison but its not noticable while riding.
This is a 2012 model and weighed in at 25lbs 5oz completly stock.

As far as the components:
Elixr 3.. These have the new rotors and work great. Pretty powerfull decent in noise. He back gets a bit noisy when to dirty. So far very happy with them.

Sram x7 shifter and x9 derailer:
Very crisp and fast. Tried an xt set up amd hated it. To soft in the triggers but it was and older bike.
Love the matchmaker set up, really cleans up the bars.

Cockpit was a perfect fit for me. I wouldnt change it. Mabye lighter stuff someday.

The bb30 is incredibly stiff and feels like im getting the power down really well.

All in all im hooked on this bike. Cant see my self having anything other then a lefty.

Weakness:

Well as much as I love the bike it has its querks.

part in the lefty came out and lost all its fork oil in the fork. It has to go back to be rebuilt. They said the damper will be replaced and all bearings and races as well.

Creaks!!!
Saddle creaks every time I move.
Handle bars creak when pumping up hill.
BB creaks when pedaling hard in the saddle.

Allthis has been fixed with lube. But it will happen again.

Derailer hanger was striped from the factory. Also the crank was loose.

Amazing bike. Has its querks but worth it. I can ride so much faster and smoother on this bike then my last.
Took 2nd place at my first race. Been riding for a year.

Similar Products Used:

09 stumpjumper
Devinci cameleon

[Apr 17, 2012]
Hi Ho silver and away !
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Fast !, climbs like my loco moto ie- a mountain goat. It kinda rides like a F.S. "kinda". It's stiff yet gives in on the back end!/? Gets "LOOKS" ! Tracks so well, like a bloodhound!

Weakness:

Didn't care for the handle grips? I'll replace when needed. First thing I replaced was the saddle! Makes me giggle way too much on the trail!

Got a 2010 at a L.B.S. $1350 + tax ! Middle of winter and it comes with a lefty! Yea- I would be silly not to snag it; right! First ride, felt strange But soon felt like I was in a cockpit. Handles like it's on rails ! You ever seen that dog sticking its head out of a window at 60 m.p.h tong flapping in the wind ? That's me now ! Here's a silly fact, on my other bikes my best lap at local bike trail was 67 minutes! Just pulled a 52 minute lap ! Is it the bike or dose the bike me faster ? Hmmmmmmm - ? Who should buy this bike ? Honestly I don't know. The price of a carbon frame has come down so much that all my friends are hooking up!

Similar Products Used:

Pacific, mongoose, specialized, giant, K2, Titus.

[Mar 05, 2012]
Puzman
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Light, stiff, yet with SAVE stays is very comfortable for a hardtail. Neutral (or should I say natural?) geometry: handling is point-and-shoot without being twitchy, and the cockpit is plenty roomy. (I'm 5'8", 30" inseam, and ride a Medium). Good spec for the price. Oh, and the Lefty is awesome!

Weakness:

Stock tires are so-so. Would like more standover. Other color options?

Fantastic 29er hardtail. Stiff, efficient, and absolutely devours technical terrain. Descends steep drops without ever feeling like I'm gonna go over the bars, and climbs like a monkey on crack; almost feels like cheating. The Lefty is ridiculously stiff and feels pretty damn plush for a 90 mm air fork. Can't go wrong with this one.

Similar Products Used:

Coming from a 26er FS background (Titus LocoMoto, Yeti 575) and rode a GT Zaskar 29er for 1 season, which I traded in because my back was hurting (even with a Thudbuster). Don't know if its the longer TT or the SAVE stays, but with the Flash, my back pain is gone.

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