The history of Chumba is one with a somewhat rocky past but it appears the brand has finally hit smooth trails with its recent rebranding and relaunch. When a couple of guys from Austin, Texas took over, they had one thing on their minds: steel. That and making mountain bikes in Texas, designed to thrash our local trails and still perform in the mountains of Colorado.
Earlier this year, we looked at their 29+ Ursa model and yesterday, I met the Chumba team out at Pace Bend Park, a 45 minute drive from Austin, to shred their new made in Texas Stella 29’r hard tail.
It’s easy to see why I’m so excited about these bikes. First, they’re made in Texas, second, they’re steel but the most important part to me is they really rip. With a 70.5 HTA and a 73 STA, it’s a perfect geometry for all things XC and even some trail.
The Stella is a go anywhere, do anything kinda bike. Not too racey, not too slacked out and definitely not afraid to get loaded down with bikepacking bags. The team designed this bike to be a good all-around 29’r. Complete with rack mounts…
… and sliding dropouts, you can literally change the Stella’s modus operandi with a few turns of a wrench.
The model I rode yesterday came equipped with a Fox Float 32 fork, a much lighter fork – both visually and its weight – than I’m used to riding. It took a little getting used to, especially coming from a Pike.
The Stella is dropper-post ready, with cable guides in place. Once you use a dropper, you’ll never want to ride a traditional post on a hardtail again.
Run it 142×12 with a Shimano E-Thru Axle or 135×10 QR, singlespeed or geared, even 1x. My preference would be 1×11 with that slider brought all the way forward. Tucking the rear as much as posssible – 443mm.
Ok, details. This bike’s got them. Even small ones like the Texas star on the stay bridge.
… and a bent downtube.
The powder coat looks great, its stance is spot on. Surely I had some negatives? No, not really. It’s a True Temper (selection) MTB with a solid build kit and a dialed geometry. So what’s the price on this bad boy? That’s the best part.
The Stella frame comes in at $1,150 and the Stella completes with Shimano come in around $3,595. Of course, you can add options and built it to suite your needs, just give the guys a call or drop them an email.
Chumba also makes an Ursa 29+ and a Rastro 27.5 trail bike, with a fat bike on the way.