Kona is constantly evaluating and adjusting our frame designs as rider demands and technology change. However, rather than re-inventing our designs every season based on the latest trend; rather than making our older models obsolete by re-inventing the wheel every year, we choose to fine-tune our proven designs.
For instance, while the sloping top tube mountain bike design that we pioneered 18 years ago has been largely imitated, we have continued to improve function with significant and subtle refinements. Even the first Kona road bikes we made for ourselves in 1990 used a sloping top tube and straight forks—design innovations now ubiquitous in the pro peloton.
Rather than rush into dual suspension by buying someone else’s design, we took two years to design, develop and test prototype after prototype until we settled on the Kona Walking Beam 4-Bar Linkage System in 1996, now the standard for dual suspension design. We did the same when developing our Magic Link technology, which, since it’s release in 2008, is quietly revolutionizing the ride capabilities of all-mountain/enduro bikes.
We’re proud to say that Kona is an independent and rider oriented company that strongly believes in doing things our own way. We don’t innovate for innovation sake. We do it only when we’re absolutely positive it’s going to make a profound improvement in the ride performance of our bicycles.
out our entire line of bikes. Most notably, our Cadabra 100-160mm variable travel backcountry bike uses a Scandium frame, a testament to our commitment and faith in one of the world’s most rigorous materials.
• Light as titanium
• More durable than carbon
• Half the weight of steel
• Five times stronger than aluminum
• Fast as light
• Lifetime warranty
Aluminum is one of the most widely used tubing materials in the bicycle industry. The material is mixed with other elements creating alloys with different ride characteristics and properties. Kona uses butted 7005 aluminum extensively throughout our entire range of bicycles. A tough, durable, affordable, light and dependable alloy, 7005 delivers great riding performance for years and years.
STEEL IS REAL
We’ve never given up on the original mountain bike material. You’ll find the simplicity, strength, comfort, resilience, and playfulness of steel sprinkled throughout our line of road, asphalt and mountain bikes.
Hydroformed tubing is a forming technology that uses a liquid to form the shape of a tube and align its grain structure. At Kona we use hydroformed tubing on a variety of our bicycles. Quite simply, the technology delivers on sound structure and ride performance like no other tubing in the world. The process results in a seamless, continuous, aligned piece of metal—right down to the fiber structure itself.
Hydroforming proves especially advantageous at weld points where it can be flared to increase weld areas, essentially, adding strength without adding weight. The result is a strong, flawless frame with great lateral stability, durability and responsiveness.
KONA WALKING BEAM 4-BAR LINKAGE SYSTEM
Since Kona first introduced the platform in 1996, we’ve been refining and honing the most functional, durable and performance-oriented dual suspension platforms ever invented. That’s why you see versions of our 4-Bar linkage on everything from the Hei Hei XC Race bike to our DH Stab Supreme.
• Function and Durability
Anytime you have a pivot in anything, there is side-to-side movement, or tolerance. It’s what allows the pivot to move freely. When you have pivots that are close together, like in more complicated multi-pivot designs, the side-to-side movement in those pivots becomes amplified, what’s called tolerance stacking. Kona’s 4-Bar system keeps pivots as far away from each other as possible, thus minimizing tolerance stacking. Ultimately, it equates a stiffer rear end, as well a significant decrease in bearing and bushing wear. Another benefit of our 4-Bar system is minimized side load on the rear shock. If you’ve got close pivot points and/or the shock positioned so that it is exposed to lateral forces, you’ve got side load on the shock. Side load causes resistance, which negatively impacts suspension performance. Side load also causes premature seal failures. With our 4-Bar system the rear shock is protected from side-to-side forces. As a result, we have a super low rate of shock problems, as well as a very responsive feel to the rear suspension.
4-Bar allows for a rainbow of different suspension characteristics, after all, this is the suspension platform used for F1 racecars. For XC bikes, we can take an inherently progressive air shock and make the suspension more linear, allowing the rider to benefit from all of the bike’s travel. For downhill bikes, like our Stab, an inherently linear coil shock can be set-up to be more progressive for big hits.
• Plush Factor
Void of gimmicks, with pivots, bearings and the shock itself well supported, Kona’s Walking Beam 4-Bar Linkage System delivers that beautiful, super plush feel we all crave as mountain bikers. Whether it’s taking the edge of a technical XC race course, the burl out of a backcountry all-day epic, or smoothing the brake bumps at your local bike park, our 4-Bar suspension designs deliver bomber plushness, ride in, ride out.
SLOPING TOP TUBE
As the pioneer of sloping top tubes in mountain bike frame design, we’ve since stayed true to all the many positives this design technology brings to the trail. First, it allows the top tube to be longer, providing more room for correct positioning and free body movement. Second, it also allows for more standover clearance, critical on dual suspension bikes due to a higher bottom bracket. Vertically, the frame is more compliant, allowing it to absorb more shock than frames with horizontal top tubes. It also puts the rider in a more secure position for downhill sections of trail.
29er refers to the wheel size of the bicycle. In this case, the wheels are 29-inches in diameter. “Standard” wheel sizes on mountain bikes are typically 26-inches. There is much debate as to which standard is better, but with all the positives and negatives considered, we find it comes down to preference.
The positives, however, for the right rider in the right scenario, are significant. Bigger wheels mean more rollabilty over technical terrain. They also supply more centrifugal force—once a 29er bike is rolling down the trail, you’ll notice the speed, stability and momentum of the bike are significantly increased.
Benefits of the Big Wheel:
• Rolls over obstacles easier—thanks to simple physics, 29” wheels skip over bumps better than 26” wheels, offering a smoother, faster ride, especially on broken ground
• Stability—bigger wheels have higher pivots, meaning that a rider is “deeper” in the bike, requiring more force to pitch the rider forward, over the bars
• Longer wheel contact—bigger wheels enable tire tread to stay in contact with the ground more than a 26” wheel, improving cornering and float
• Superior momentum—rollability, stability and longer wheel contact all add up to speed. Speed is good.
Short for Drop Out Performance Enhancement, D.O.P.E. is a floating brake system that allows suspension to be fully active while under full brake. A big deal when you’re ripping down the chattery, chundery downhill trails of the world. The system also offers the ability to fit several rear hub types and remains in the frame during wheel removal. For 2010 the Kona D.O.P.E. System sees improved dropouts to increase stiffness and strength with stronger bolts and an improved interface. Our engineers have added a third bolt and clevis that can’t spread under side load even if the other two bolts were to get loose. The result is a bulletproof and stiffer than ever D.O.P.E. system.
• 135mm for all standard QR and 12mm through axle hubs
• Thrust bearing floater design eliminates side-to-side play
• Light, machined floater body with thrust bearings
• Remains in frame during rear wheel removal
• Standard equipment on Stab Supreme, Stab Deluxe, Stinky Supreme and Stinky Deluxe
• Available as aftermarket upgrade for use on the 2010 Stinky, Stinky Six, Minxy, CoilAir, CoilAir Deluxe and Coilair Supreme.
Three years ago we imagined a bike that could change. By only listening to the forces of trail and the rider, this bike could adapt to best maximize performance on any given situation, instantly, instinctively. Today, that bike has Magic Link.
For the mid-to-long travel range of dual suspension mountain bikes, like our all-new All Mountain Cadabra series, and our existing Freeride CoilAir series, bikes designed to both climb and descend exceptionally well—not to mention accelerate, corner, even jump, without using any gimmicks or external adjustments to change suspension virtues or geometry, Magic Link is the answer.
Imagine a mid-to-long travel bike that’s designed to excel when it’s climbing or pedaling really hard: nice linear rear travel with steeper head and seat angles and a more upright riding position.
Now imagine that same bike when it’s going downwards, braking or hitting big bumps. Not ideal. Well, imagine that same bike with the ability to change its rear travel: more progressive, with softer suspension in the initial stages of travel. Not only that, imagine the travel on this bike could lengthen, while its geometry changed to slacker head and seat angles, with an improved wheel path.
Keep in mind these aren’t two separate modes. The Magic Link is constantly reacting to all of the forces acting on it, and it’s not like an on/off switch. It’s never “stuck” in one mode. It just does what you need. Sometimes it is in-between modes, or cycling between modes, but there’s no sudden feeling of change, such as an abrupt alteration of the bike’s geometry. The rider is unaware of what’s going on, just having fun, riding like a bat out of hell, up and down. That, friends, is magic.
1.5-inch head tubes have a larger diameter than standard 1-1/8-inch head tubes to accommodate larger fork steer tubes and beefier bearings—gear which is known to be significantly stronger and more impact resistant.
At Kona we use 1.5-inch headsets on our line of Stinky freeride bikes, our Stab downhill bikes and the notorious Five-0.
Magnesium is the perfect metal for use in applications where stiffness and weight are crucial. At Kona, many of our rear suspension rocker plates are made of magnesium for improved suspension performance, efficiency and low weight.
By having the headset bearing located inside the heat tube, rather than the top and bottom, you’re able to achieve a whole array of advantages when it comes to front end stiffness and overall performance. With an internal headset, the head tube is able to take the stress directly, resulting in less play, stronger, improved ride characteristics, and better bearing performance. Basically, like a good friend, an internal headset is sharing the load, every molecule in the materials distributing forces more equally.
Unbeknownst to most of us, when we torque on the pedals, not only are we propelling the bike forward, we’re also pulling the rear wheel over to the drivetrain side of the bicycle. It is the one element of bike design that’s not in perfect balance.
Asymmetrical stays help to stiffen the rear end. The drive-side stay is straight, while the non-drive takes advantage of no chain rings and chain, incorporating a better structure to improve rear end stiffness. By putting strength where it is needed, pedaling stiffness is greatly increased.
COMPACT REAR TRIANGLE
Short chain stays and seat stays provide a perfect balance of stability and power transfer when out of the saddle and hammering. Shorter seat stays also have less deflection during braking and accelerate quicker than longer stays.
TAPERED HEAD TUBE
You’ll notice many of Kona’s All Mountain and Freeride bikes, like our Dawgs and CoilAirs, now come with a tapered head tube: 1 1/8-inches at the top, 1.5-inches at the bottom. For bikes using suspension forks, especially longer travel models, a tapered head tube provides more support at the intersection of the top tube and down tube. In short, more diameter equates to a stronger weld surface.
In addition, more girth at the bottom of the head tube better distributes shock force, prolonging headset bearing life. Thanks to a bigger bearing where most of the stress is located, the design also allows for a stronger steering position, improving balance and giving the rider more control in rough terrain.
T TH = Top Tube Length
STA = Seat Tibe Angle
HTA = Head Tube Angle
RC = Chainstay Length
FC = Front To Center
WB = Wheelbase
FL = Fork Length
OF = Fork Offs et
BBH = Bottom Bracket Height
SO = Standover
HT = Head Tube Length
BBS = Bottom bracket Size
FD = Front Derailleur Clamp Size