Early Carbon MTB

The Kestrel MXZ, one of the earliest production carbon mtb frames. I remember seeing one as a kid at the LBS in Florida. Seeing this photo, I can’t believe I thought this bike was so HOT back then. Look at those elevated chainstays, or “E-stays” as they were called. OMG, they eliminated chainslap! Technology was amazing! I remember the brand Alpinestar had E-stays too. Sure road bike style and form have changed a lot since the 1980s, but it’s nothing compared to offroad bikes.

Kestrel MXZ (photo from claremontvelo.com)


I owned a e-stay Alpinestars back in the early 1990’s. it saw me through several seasons racing in muddy England. Excellent mud and tyre clearance and no chain suck, In these two respects my current (2012 design) FS bike is inferior to the e-stay design.

Ready made for a belt drive conversion…

I remember the GT thermoplast MTB frames that came out (and failed) before this. The (curvy) shape of things to come.

If you are referring to the GT STS Thermo it was made in 95 while the above kestrel was late 80s

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