Santa Cruz Hightower LT CC XX1 Reserve

published by bktr on 17/10/2017 15:34:44


To say our first Hightower LT to go out the door was a special one would be a wild understatement. Santa Cruz’s latest offering – a do it all 29er long travel trail bike – has been on a lot of peoples’ wishlists since its release earlier this year, but not many of them will be going out with a spec list like this one! This top-of-the-range Hightower LT ticks pretty much every box – with high spec components from SRAM, Fox and KS – as well as a very special wheelset.


First up is the suspension. The rear end of the bike is kept in check with Fox’s new Float DPX2  piggy back shock. This game changing air shock has tons of adjustability, making finding the correct tuning a doddle. Naturally, the shock has been paired up front with a set of 150mm Fox Factory Float 36s. We’re going to be sending the LT’s proud owner out with our ShockWiz in a couple of weeks time so he can get the suspension dialled in and running perfectly.


Going with anything other than a gold SRAM XX1 Eagle drivetrain would be sacrilege on this build. Anyone who has ridden with an Eagle drivetrain will know that the 50 tooth cassette cog is an absolute life saver on long and technical ascents – and anyone who hasn’t ridden with one should really give it a go!


Hiding somewhere behind that SRAM XX1 eagle carbon crank set is a Chris King threadfit bottom bracket. Chris King components are chose for their reliability and durability, as well as the fact that they are pretty bling! Normally we would match this up with a Chris King headset, but unfortunately King are yet to produce an integrated headset to fit the new Santa Cruz frames – this is the same for the Tallboy, Chameleon, Hightower and Nomad. There are rumours that a King option will be available in the near future, but for now we’ve had to stick with a Hope headset.


SRAM’s Guide Ultimate brakes are some of the best on the market – providing a unique balance of stopping power and modulation. If you’re a rider who prefers to have consistent control over your speed, rather than mindlessly locking up your wheels every time you brake, then the Guides are a great brake to look at. The Ultimate model features a great deal of adjustability, so you can really dial in the way the brake feels. Also featured on the Guide Ultimates is a carbon lever blade, because why not?!


As with the vast majority of our high spec builds, this Hightower LT has been lovingly Invisiframed by Sam. If you’ve ever tried to Inivisframe a bike then you’ll know just how skilful this job is  - try and do it on your own and I give you about 30 seconds before you’ve permanently encased your lovely new frame in about a trillion cat hairs. If you want to protect your bike, you really are better off leaving it to the professionals!

One part of this build is missing, however, as we are still waiting for its very special wheelset. This will be our first customer bike to be going out with Santa Cruz’s new Reserve wheels on i9 hubs – and I very much doubt it will be our last. Unfortunately there is still a couple of weeks wait for the Reserve wheels, so our customer has had to settle for our demo set of Mavic XA Pro Carbons. It’s a tough life!

At Biketreks we are lucky enough to build a lot of very nice bicycles and have a great depth of knowledge about the best components to suit your riding. If you would like to discuss anything from a cheap but reliable custom bike-packing hardtail, to an ultra-lightweight cross country marathon bike, then we’re just a phone call away. In the meantime we’re going to be making a few amendments to our Christmas wishlists.