In 1994, carbon fiber frames represented less than 1 percent of the mountain bike frames being pro- duced. Twenty years later, the space-age weavery
has still not come close to surpassing aluminum as the
material of choice for mountain bikers. Our 2013 rider
survey revealed that only 11 percent of you are on
carbon, while 82 percent are riding with aluminum
frames. We take a look back at the carbon class of
1994 for clues as to why the material has yet to find
Mongoose IBOC Pro SX: The Goose stuck with aluminum lugs for the frame construction and only used carbon fiber for the frame
tubes. You will note that on almost all these bikes, bar ends were the rage.
Trek 9800: This Wisconsin company had a jump on carbon fiber
frame technology because of their experience with the material
on their road bikes. Priced at $1799, this bike was considered a
mid-priced bike for this class.
Fisher Pro Caliber: Fisher Bikes had already been purchased
by Trek, so there was an uncanny resemblance between the two
brands’ carbon frames. The biggest difference was that Fisher
used RockShox forks and Trek used their own brand.