The Breezer Repack is Joe Breeze’s first modern full suspension bike, and it’s managed to introduce a pretty unique design without having to reinvent the wheel.
First, a bit of background: Breeze was one of the original mountain bikers along with Charlie Kelly and Gary Fisher, which is where the Repack name comes from. He built the first mountain bike in 1977 to compete at Repack, and that bike is now in the Smithsonian.
The reason it took so long for him to make a full suspension bike is that he and his team spent a lot of time evaluating different platforms. Eventually, they partnered with Sottogroup, which helped develop Yeti’s Switch System and others.
Two years in development, the result is the M-Link, which stands for Mid Link and combines the benefits of systems like Horst Link (FSR) and dual short links (VPP, Maestro, DW Link, etc) and remove their disadvantages. Primarily, they wanted to keep short chainstays and have a rigid, fixed rear triangle. That gave them tight geometry and a solid, flex free rear end. That led to the design shown here, but it ended up providing more benefits than they could have imagined…
They say the problem with short links is the bearings are rotating a lot, and they’re doing it frequently with rapid accelerations and decelerations. This amplifies any friction in the pivots. The flip side of that is the pivot at the very back of the stays like on a Horst Link, which has more potential for flex. By putting the pivots in between the two, they get a very smooth, minimal rotation of the bearings while still maintaining a rigid rear end. They’re also able to maintain good control over both wheel path and chain growth.
Chainstays are 438mm on a 160mm travel bike, which ain’t too shabby.
All pivots are using sealed cartridge bearings. Tire clearance within the rear triangle is respectable.
There’s also ample wheel clearance at the seat tube thanks to a slight bend where the main top tube intersects. This shows full extension (left) and compression (right) of the rear suspension. I didn’t get a chance to ride it, but pushing and sitting on the suspension felt very supple.
The front triangle uses his D’Fusion tube shaping, which creates a “D” shaped section at the front of the downtube and headtube to handle the stresses at that high impact space. Other details include a PF92 bottom bracket to allow for a wider chainstay yoke. Dropper seat post routing runs under the top tube.
Given that it’s been in development for so long, I asked if it was originally planned as a 650B bike. Joe’s response was sort of muffled as to the original concepts, but said 650B is the right choice for a bike like this. By way of justification, he says it’s an all-mountain, Enduro oriented bike with geometry made take advantage of the fulcrum points created by the slightly higher front axle and relatively lower bottom bracket. This means a slack-ish but raceably steep 68°.
The Repack Team Edition shown here is the top model. Retail is €3,699, US pricing coming soon. Two other models will be available below this one.
This isn’t Joe’s first full suspension bike. He made the Twister and Tornado came out in the mid ’90s and used the Sweet Spot (aka URT) suspension from John Castellano.