Ragley Bikes Blue Pig Custom Build  2014 Mountain Bike Review

Ragley Bikes Blue Pig Custom Build 2014

Reviews / Hard Tails

Ragley Bikes 14,406

At A Glance

Ragley describe themselves as a hardcore hardtail company with the design ethos of “long front centre, slack head angle, steep seat angle and FUN”. As soon as the bright yellow Blue Pig left the box it was obvious that it more than met their ideals.

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With a steel frame, slack head angle, long travel fork and dropper post, there was no denying what the Ragley Blue Pig was designed for - thrashing singletrack!

On The Trail

Although named after a farmyard animal, if I had to compare the Blue Pig to anything it would be that of a Jack Russell, full of energy, over excitable and ready for absolutely anything, even if it should know better!

With the slack head angle and long top tube, the Ragley instantly feels relaxed and comfortable, urging you to attack and be ready for fun. Hitting runs that I’d last hit on a full-suss, I was reminded how much fun a hardtail can be, launching off roots, pumping every undulation the trail had, this pig had me squealing! If you’ve not ridden a hard tail for a while be prepared to remember what it is like when the going gets rough. You’ll need to remember the skill of picking your lines and pointing the bike down the path of least resistance to get the most out of it. Thankfully the Blue Pig is very good at tracking and the Manitou Mattoc Pro fork is great at sticking the front wheel exactly where you want it.

The steel frame offers a degree of suppleness over aluminium and small trail chatter and buzz gets eaten up especially if you allow your body to suck up as much as you can. Once I got dialled into my old hard tail skills and awoke the beast within I found myself really pushing the bike hard down the trails and reaping the rewards. In the corners you can enter them hot and know that the back end will track all the way round as you pump the bike for more speed, leaving you to exit faster than you went in.

I felt a bit like the pinball wizard as I picked my lines and hammered along with a rather stupid grin on my face. The geometry on the Blue Pig really inspires confidence and the long, low and slack lines will have you launching off things you probably shouldn’t, but the bike handles it all like it’s just another day in the office.

What the Blue Pig does so well is offer a level of performance at a very reasonable price, allowing you to get a fantastic bike that will be more than happy on a local XC loop, whilst equally being happy on the bigger more mountainous trails that are out there. Hardtails so often get overlooked these days, but the Blue Pig deserves some attention, if you want fun, frolics and ferociousness right out of the box, then this brightly coloured beast delivers on all fronts!

Tech Heads

The 26” wheeled 4130 steel Ragley Blue Pig has had a recent geometry update and a new triple-butted tubeset. Upfront you will find a 44mm head tube, opening up wide fork choices when combined with the right headset combination. The frame is designed around a 130/140mm fork with an external headset cup, or a 150/160mm fork with an internal cup. As you would expect from a hardcore hardtail there are ISCG05 tabs and the frame can take up to 180mm discs.

As the Ragley Blue Pig is available as frame only, the UK distributors (Hotlines) put together a custom build for us using Ragley bars, stem and saddle, with the rest of the package including a RockShox Reverb dropper post, and Shimano SLX gears and drive train. It was then finished off with other parts they distribute, such as a Blackspire chain device, Manitou Mattoc Pro Forks and Nukeproof finishing kit.

Ragley Blue Pig Custom Build

Seat tube: 406mm
Effective top tube: 585mm
Head tube: 110mm
Chain stay: 425mm
Wheel base: 1110mm
BB Drop: 20mm
Head angle: 66.5˚
Seat Angle: 72˚
Reach: 391mm
Weight (Frame only): 5.82lbs

Overall

When you first look at the Ragley you know that it’s been designed for one thing, having a laugh in the woods. The in-your-face paint job perfectly suits the bikes personality. If you want to put a smile on your face, then jump aboard and find out what the fuss is about! The Blue Pig is immensely fun for throwing around and attacking the trails hard, and it’s also a very good value bike that won’t hurt your wallet.

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This review was in Issue 30 of IMB.

For more information visit Ragley Bikes

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By James Cornford

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