Commonground bikes combine the stable, planted feel of a 26 inch hardtail with the flickable, simple ride of a 20 inch BMX. It's not a traditional cruiser, and it's not a traditional 24 inch dirt jumper. In fact, it's not traditional at all.
down and nerdy.
take a closer look at exactly what sets commonground apart from traditional designs.
Similar to their 20 inch brothers, BMX cruisers put the bottom bracket above the axles, and use their same steep head angle. But commonground frames keep you below the axles and behind the front wheel. The ride is more akin to that of modern 26 inch hardtails, which have nearly the same head angle. But there's more to front ends than just red lines and protractors...
A bike's "trail" is the distance beween the point at which the front tire touches the ground and the spot where an imaginary line, cutting through the front axle intersects the ground. More trail makes for a forgiving but sluggish feel while less trail offers quickness but sacrifices stability. The commonground offers more responsive steering than 26 inch hardtails, but remains much more relaxed than a BMX.
It's a shame there aren't more 24 inch hardtails out there. They share the relaxed geometry of 26ers, their wheels are stronger and lighter, and they offer more room for riders who want shorter rear ends and, presumably, lower standover. But the only available adequate suspension forks are designed for 26" wheels, which forces the top tube at least an inch higher than it could be. Shortening the length of the fork can help, but will affect the rest of the bike's geometry. The cornerstone of the commonground design is that it maintains a comfortable head angle, but abandons the concept of suspension altogether. The three to five inches of extra clearance makes way for steezier turndowns, tables, cans, you name it.
The commonground handlebars are just as well thought-out as the frames they were designed for. Their 7.25" rise bring the rider up to about the same height that a 2" rise bar would on a traditional hardtail, and slightly higher than that of a BMX bike with a 10" bar. BMX stems come in a variety of rises and drops, so you'll have no trouble finding a height that works for you. At 30.5" wide, they match the width of modern hardtails and can be cut to your preferred size. But their upsweep is what really sets them apart. Traditional BMX bars are intended to rest in line with their frames' steep head angles, so they have a relatively flat 1 to 2 degree upsweep. But the commonground bars lay back a full 6 to 7 degrees slacker, and needed a more generous upsweep to keep them feeling comfortable. Their 5 degree upsweep and 8 degree backsweep make these bars a must-have for your commonground build.
Perhaps most importantly, commonground bikes are made in the USA by FBM. The rider-owned, upstate New York BMX manufacturer embodies the spirit shared among all riders. Our handlebars and forks are made in southern California by equally legendary BMX manufacturer, S&M.
Framesets and complete builds are ready to ship. Browse the options hereor feel free to contact me for a custom build.