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The Sanitas Tap Root: Win A Singlespeed Ti Hardtail With Downcountry Geo

The Sanitas Tap Root is a handbuilt singlespeed titanium hardtail with a slack head angle and long reach on the progressive end of downcountry. It's made to fly up hills and shred down them, and you could win it in Wheels Manufacturing's Ultimate Bike Giveaway.

Written by: Bruce Lin

Published on:

Posted in:Bikes

One of the fun things about mountain biking (for me at least) is choosing a bike to suit specific trails and riders. With so many different types of mountain bikes available, modern riders are spoiled for choice. But one niche has been a bit underrepresented: the downcountry hardtail. 

Many XC hardtails stick to shorter 100mm forks and less progressive geometry that don’t inspire confidence on gnarly terrain. Trail hardtails are beefier, with 130mm+ travel forks, but often don’t feel spry enough to race. For true downcountry aficionados, the dream mountain bike might look something like this:

  • A handbuilt titanium frame
  • A lightweight 120mm Rockshox SID fork 
  • A slack (<66-degree)  head angle
  • Longer reach 
  • Maybe some sliding dropouts for singlespeed shenanigans 
Titanium hardtail bike build

If that ticks all the right boxes for you, then this Sanitas Tap Root I’m featuring today might be the bike you’ve been waiting for. Our Master Tech, Jose, built the frame up last week for Wheels Manufacturing's Ultimate Bike Giveaway. TPC has teamed up with Wheels, Sanitas, and several other brands to make this giveaway possible. One lucky winner will receive this Sanitas Tap Root titanium hardtail plus other prizes. 

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Frame: Sanitas Tap Root (Large)

Sanitas tap root frame

Sanitas is a custom titanium framebuilder led by the father-son team of John and David Siegrist. 

John founded DEAN Titanium Bikes in 1989 and designed and built custom bikes for Merlin Metal Works, Ibis Bicycles, EverTi, Form, Haley, Ionic, Sampson, Jade, Stoemper, Red Tail, Vynl, and more. His son David built his first titanium frame in his early teens. Together, they build their frames one by one at their base in the cycling hotspot of Durango, CO.

Sanitas Tap root

The Tap Root is John and David’s take on a downcountry hardtail. The frame is built with size specific straight gauge 3/2.5 titanium tubing and weighs between 3-3.5 pounds depending on sizing. 

The geometry is progressive, aimed at rougher, steeper, and more technical trails. The frame is designed around a 130mm fork, but with a more XC 120mm fork, the head angle stays fairly slack around 65.5-degrees. The size large has an impressively long 487.7mm reach. Paired with the head angle, the Tap Root will feel more stable than most XC-oriented hardtails. 

Tap rootdown geometry

The stock geo chart shows the bike's aggressive nature. A 120mm SID fork sheds weight and sharpens things up a bit for more XC-oriented riding. 

sliding dropouts

The frame uses a T47 threaded bottom bracket, can clear 29 x 2.6” tires, and has sliding dropouts which allow it to run a singlespeed or geared drivetrain. It is valued at $3750.


Singlespeed Drivetrain: Ignite & Wheels MFG

Ignite catalyst cranks

A singlespeed build was chosen for this giveaway build, which should delight some and disgust others. Either way, it’s cool. If you don’t have a singlespeed or if you’ve never tried one, this rig might be the perfect addition to your quiver. 

The Catalyst Cranks and Fire Rings chainring are made by Ignite Components. These unique cranks are made in a machine shop in Allamuchy, New Jersey by engineer and machinist Ian Colquhoun. They’re light for alloy cranks (510-550g) and use Generative design to make them strong enough for Enduro use. 

Wheels MFG SOLO XD singlespeed kit

The cranks spin on a Wheels Manufacturing T47 Outboard bottom bracket and drive a Wheels SOLO-XD Single Speed Conversion Kit for XD Hubs with an 18t cog. 

Cockpit: Ritchey & WTB

Ritchey WCS handlebars and stem

Ritchey provided the cockpit with a 760mm WCS Rizer bar and 45mm WCS Trail stem. Under the stem is a Wheels Manufacturing Pro Aluminum Headset Spacer Kit.

WTB saddle and grips

WTB provided a Volt Fusion Form saddle and Wafel Clamp-On grips. It has a Ritchey WCS Carbon post, but the frame is routed for a dropper post should you want to ride/race on terrain more technical than the Leadville Trail 100 (this bike is capable of SO much more). 

Wheels and Tires: Hunt & WTB

Hunt Trail Wide MTB wheels

The Tap Root rolls on a set of Hunt's Trail Wide wheels wrapped in 29 x 2.4” WTB Rangers. The alloy Trail Wide wheels have a 30 mm internal width to support wider 2.4”+ tires. Wheels Manufacturing provided thru axles for the front and rear. 

Protective Coating: Pelli Bike Care

Pelli graphene

Before being built, the frame was coated in Pelli’s RideRepel Graphene Protection. Titanium is corrosion-resistant and generally doesn't need this, but adding a protective coating will repel water, dirt, and dust to keep the bike cleaner. 

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Pelli graphene

Pelli’s RideRepel is easy to apply and uses Graphene for an impressively durable protective coating that can last up to 9 years.  

Additional Prizes: TPC & More

Sanitas bike giveaway bike build

Winning this giveaway will get you one sweet custom-built bike plus much more… 

TPC Gift card

A $250.00 gift card to TPC to put toward components, apparel, accessories, or a new or Certified Pre-Owned bike. 

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The coffee ride

4 digital gift cards for The Coffee Ride worth $25 each that you can use to get caffeinated. Josh, the owner, is TPC's former photographer and he knows how to roast beans. All his beans are freshly roasted and delivered to your door. He even makes a high-quality instant coffee that is my go-to for camping trips.  

Ornot bike bag

Gear up for adventure with bags and apparel from Ornot Bike. Ornot will provide is Ecopak Handlebar Bag and Seat Bag, along with a Bamboo + Organic Cotton Trail Shirt and a pair of their Cargo Bib Shorts. I like Ornot because they're Climate Neutral Certified, make kits domestically, and use recycled fabrics.

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Tailwind starter pack

Tailwind Nutrition will provide a Rapid Hydration Variety Pack and a Starter Kit, plus a Tailwind neck gaiter and 22oz Purist Bottle. Tailwind has been my preferred drink mix for the last year ever since I discovered how well my stomach tolerates it. To hold your Tailwind-filled bottles, you'll get a pair of stainless steel King Cages that will last as long as the frame and keep bottles secure so they don't eject on the trail.

King cages

To get the bike (and all the other prizes) to your door, BikeFlights will provide shipping with it Bike Box Large (BBL).

Sanitas tap root
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