It is a bike that will get you compliments from other riders everywhere you go, because first of all it looks fantastic, and second they know even if they are a little bit faster on their expensive full sus machine, that you will be having more fun. I was actually quite sad to see they had discontinued the Soul earlier this year, pretty much without warning. You would imagine that such an iconic frame will only become more sought after over time.
FULL SPEC Frame: 2015 Cotic Soul 275 (Gen4) Large, Orange. Cotic branded front mudguard and chainstay protector. Stem: Brand-X MTB Stem - 31.8mm, 70mm long. Bar: Nukeproof Sam Hill Series Riser Bar - 31.8mm, 780mm wide, 38mm rise. Grips: ODI Yeti Hardcore Lock-on.
FSA Top cap and some generic carbon spacers. Wheels: Stans No Tubes Arch MK3 on Hope Pro4 (front) and Pro2 (rear) hubs. Tyres: Schwalbe Magic Mary 2.35" (front), Hans Dampf 2.35" (rear), Snakeskin sidewalls, set up tubeless. Brake rotors: Shimano XT SM-RT86 203mm front 180mm rear. Chainring: BLACK by Absoluteblack Narrow Wide Oval XT M8000 32t.
Cranks: Shimano SLX M7000 175mm. Cassette: Sunrace MX8 11-50 black/red.Derailleur: Shimano SLX M7000 11sp Rear Derailleur Shifter: Shimano XT M8000 11 Speed Trigger Shifter. Dropper post: Thomson Elite Dropper (5mm layback).
I built this bike up between the end of 2017 and the start of 2018 from a mixture of new and used parts. I poured love into this bike. I bought the expensive, durable/serviceable items second hand (frame, wheels, fork, dropper post), and wear/safety/geometry items new (drivetrain, brakes, bars etc). A lot more than I'd originally intended, but it was spread over time and I figured it would last me a long time. The forks are X-Fusion Sweep Roughcut HLR, as fitted to the top spec Souls at the time.The rebound, high- and low-speed compression are all adjustable through twisting the cap above or at the bottom of the damper. If you're willing to open her up (HIGHLY recommend getting a bike shop to do this unless you know what you're doing) the travel is actually adjustable between 100 and 160mm. These are currently set at 130mm. The rims are Stans No Tubes Arch MK3 front and rear, which are strong, lightweight and have a great reputation. They are set up tubeless with Schwalbe tyres.
All the rotatey parts are Hope, so built to last and able to deal with British mud, unlike some other offerings. I rebuilt the rear hub with new bearings when I originally got the wheelset as I had to swap the axle from 142mm to 135mm thru-bolt. Has that Hope "buzz" of course!
The dropper post I had serviced back in June 2019 by I-ride, with a full cartridge rebuild. I also replaced the actuation cable. It now rockets back up with force, which is fantastic but you do have to be a bit careful of your crown jewels..
The drivetrain and brakes I bought better than SLX where I thought it was justified. From my research, XT shifter and brakes were noticeable improvements.
The Sunrace cassette has a huge 11-50 ratio which gives similar range to the far pricier 11 speed SRAMs. It's also black and looks cool. AbsoluteBlack hold the patent on the oval chainring hence why I chose them, 32t oval in theory gives the power of 34t with the effort of 30t. No idea if it works exactly like that in practice but the physics make sense.
This was my first 1x11 drivetrain and I never thought I needed more at either end of the range. Having one shifter is so much better! This chainring is also narrow-wide which helps prevent the chain coming off. Honestly even if I was building this now I'd probably pick very similar parts. It really does hit the perfect fun:price ratio.
Condition is obviously not pristine as it's used. There are a few scuffs to the paint around the head tube and around the rear triangle. Tyres have life in them but will be the next thing to need replacing. There is almost no sign of wear on the drivetrain. Firstly, I haven't had much use out of it, sadly.
Probably fewer than 10 rides. I tore an ankle ligament on Crib Goch in May 2018 (not long after I built it) which took over a year to recover from. When I finally went to ride it again I had excruciating knee pain which took days to recover from. Secondly, in reality I've always been a tad too tall for this bike. I'm 6'4", and the size chart for this frame goes up to 6'2".
I tried fitting longer stems but it lead to me always feeling like I was about to be pitched over the handlebars on the downhills. I've come to the conclusion that when I can MTB again I'd want a bigger frame. Sadly the MTB industry's constantly changing standards mean that there's no way this exact combination of parts would fit on a different frame, especially if I wanted a 29er, so the best option is to sell this bike to someone who will cherish it.
Hopefully this description has done it justice. Make me an offer I can't refuse! Collection or a courier service of which I'll use the fastest of the various cycle courier services on offer.
The item "Cotic Soul Gen4 27.5 Large Steel Hardtail Mountain Bike Custom Spec not BFe" is in sale since Wednesday, December 16, 2020. This item is in the category "Sporting Goods\Cycling\Bikes". The seller is "ptothetemple" and is located in Leamington Spa. This item can be shipped to United Kingdom.