Some of the greatest innovations have come out of garages, as Santa Cruz did many years ago. Founded in a tiny garage in Santa Cruz, California, this iconic
company has made a name for itself in the mountain bike
community with its extensive line of bikes designed to be the
best rigs on the trail.
Over the years Santa Cruz has made its mark with its
VPP-equipped bikes and helped legends like Greg Minnaar,
who set records with his 18 World Cup wins. In 2015 Santa
Cruz was sold to Dutch conglomerate Pon Holdings, the same
group that owns Focus and Cervelo. Since it was acquired by
Pon Holdings, Santa Cruz has pushed to expand its line while
still offering riders the same commitment to quality.
WHO IS IT MADE FOR?
There are essentially two ways riders can equip their Tall
Boys—with standard 29-inch wheels or more trail-orientated
27. 5+ wheels. Riders looking for a more efficient, capable
cross-country rig will find themselves drawn to the faster
29-inch wheels. The progressive geometry of the Tallboy will
allow riders to rip just about any flowy trail or aggressive XC
racecourse no matter which wheel size they choose.
WHAT IS IT MADE FROM?
The Tallboy comes in a few different versions, from aluminum to high-end carbon. All the bikes are designed with
110 millimeters of VPP suspension and 120-millimeter forks.
If riders find themselves drawn to the 27. 5+ wheels, Santa
Cruz beefs up the front suspension to 130 millimeters. Santa
Cruz built a flip chip into the upper link to keep the geometry
consistent when riders swap wheels and forks. The Tallboy
uses Boost spacing in the front and rear to accommodate the
plus-sized wheels and will accept anything up to a 3-inch-
Santa Cruz claims that both frames share the same stiffness and strength of the CC level, which is almost a 1/2-
pound lighter and built from higher-modulus carbon. The front
triangles are laid up and cured, and the design uses continuing fibers around the tube junctions to maintain strength. The
CC frames are a little more expensive than the entry-level
carbon frames. Our test bike is priced at $6600.
BIKE TEST / SANTA CRUZ TALLBOY
Big or tall—take your pick