M O N T R E A L - Q U E B E C - C A N A D A


Opus Nelson: Bike Check

by Mike Levy
Feb 23, 2010

Canadian company Opus ventures into the long travel market in 2010 with their brand new Nelson series of freeride machines. Built around a floating pivot rear suspension with 175 mm of travel and featuring a long travel Totem fork, the Nelson 1 that we take a closer look at inside looks to be ready for battle!

2010 Nelson 1
2010 Nelson 1

Read on...
Opus offers two models of the Nelson, the less expensive Nelson 2 at an MSRP of $2960 CAD, and the higher end Nelson 1 that we're going to have a closer look at below. Both bikes are built around the same triple butted aluminum frame and feature Opus's Floating Pivot Point suspension that delivers 175 mm of travel and a 1.5" headtube up front. The top end Nelson featured here has an MSRP of $4160 CAD.

Frame Detail
Opus has clearly put the Nelson 1 together with the demands of high end freeriders in mind. Up front you'll find a 1.5" head tube that not only increases strength and stiffness but will also let you run any fork of your choice down the road, be that the 1.5" Totem that it comes equipped with or a standard 1.125" steerer, or even the latest crop of tapered steerer tubed forks. Opus's choice to use the larger headtube size also allows the rider to fine tune the bar height or even headtube angle by installing headsets with different stack heights.

The Nelson 1  and 2 both sport 1.5
The Nelson 1 and 2 both sport 1.5" headtubes

Hydro-formed top and down tubes curve to provide great standover room as well as clearance for any fork knobs that may have come in contact with the underside of the frame otherwise. If you do barspins on your FR bike, or are planning to, there is nothing holding you back on the big Opus. Cable routing takes a clean route beneath the downtube, although riders who hang there bikes over the tailgate during shuttle runs my take issue with this choice. The rear end is tied together with a 12x135 mm Maxle system for both stiffness and quick removal.

The Nelson's  rear suspension
The Nelson's rear suspension

Suspension on the Nelson is a Floating Pivot Point affair with two short links joining the front and rear triangles. This system can be found throughout Opus's complete line of mountain bikes and is put to good use on the Nelson, the longest travel bike in their lineup. The Fox DHX 4.0 is not mounted to the front triangle, but instead floats between the upper and lower links. All pivots rotate on sealed bearings for durability.

Lower  suspension link. Notice the floating shock mounted just above the  forward pivot
Lower suspension link. Notice the floating shock mounted just above the forward pivot

Geometry for a medium Nelson

Head angle66
EFF Seat Angle68
EFF Top Tube59 cm
Chainstay43.4 cm
Actual Frame Size (seatube length)42.3 cm
Headtube12 cm

Have a look at geometry for both the small and large Nelson here.

The Parts...
Opus equips the Nelson to be a turnkey freeride machine with a nod towards reliability as opposed to light weight. RockShox and Fox tag team the suspension duties, both handled with coil instead of air. Out back a DHX 4.0 manages the 175 mm (6.8") of travel while allowing the rider to adjust rebound, ProPedal, and Boost Valve pressure. Opus spec'ed RockShox's long travel, single crown, 1.5" Totem up front. With 180 mm (7") of travel and adjustments ranging from rebound, preload, and Mission Control, the Totem should be ready for any freeride adventures you have in mind.

The cockpit sees an assortment of FSA goodies, including a Gravity-Lite 710 bar and Gravity-Lite 60 mm stem. Controls are handled by SRAM, Avid, and Truvativ. If you have some big moves planned you'll be stoked to see the use of Code brakes to slow this heavy hitter down. A big 8" rotor can be found up front and is combined with a slightly smaller 7" disc out back.

Other standout components include the not often spotted Geax Neuron tires wrapped around Mavic's EN521 rims, and Truvativ's Holzefeller cranks in a galvanized finish.

Nelson 1 Specs

Frame and SizeOpus Nelson triple butted alloy
•175 mm/6.8" of travel
ForkTotem Coil
•180 mm of travel
ShockFox DHX 4.0
HeadsetFSA Orbit Z 1.5 Deep Cup
CrankarmsTruvativ Holzefeller, galvanized w/ 36t ring
Bottom BracketTruvativ Howitzer
CassettePG950 11-28 9spd
Rear DerailleurSRAM X.9
Shifter PodSRAM X.9
HandlebarFSA Gravity-Lite 710
StemFSA Gravity-Lite 60 mm
BrakesAvid Code, 8" front/7" rear rotors
Front WheelMavic EN521, 32h•Novatec 20 mm hub
Rear WheelMavic EN521, 32h•Novatec 12x135
TiresGeax Neuron 230 TNT
SaddleSelle San Marco Ischia
SeatpostFSA Gravity-Lite

RockShox 1.5
RockShox 1.5" steerer Totem Coil fork

A 12x135 mm  Maxle rear end keeps everything stiff and in line
A 12x135 mm Maxle rear end keeps everything stiff and in line

Visit Opusbike.com to see their other models or for more info about the Nelson series.

1 comment:

Sebastian D. Elster said...

I like your bikes. My favourite is the Bee. I saw it at the Toronto International Bike Show and I loved it: here's my review ;-)