Here are 3 examples of 'traditional' cross-country hardtails. The black one, later re-finished in metallic burnt orange, is my first frame (finished on 24 December 2006); the grey & blue ones are later examples of the breed. All the frames have a Reynolds 853 front triangle, and stays in either Reynolds 725 or Columbus Zona. Designed around a 100mm travel fork, the frames feature cowled dropouts with a detachable rear mech. hanger and bucket bush rear caliper mounts.
I built this little frame for my eldest son when he was aged 11 and 4’10” tall; this is about as small as I felt a 26” wheeled mountain bike could go. 165mm crank arms allow a low bottom bracket height; a short (100mm) head tube keeps handlebar height to a minimum, and a steeply angled top tube aids stand over.
With this yellow 'technical XC' bike my intention was to create a less racy bike and to take advantage of the 410mm long Thomson seat post allowing an unusually short (15.75") seat tube for a 5' 11" rider. Designed around a 130mm travel fork, the frame features sliding rear dropouts to my own design, along with a ring reinforced head tube and oversized Columbus down tube & top tube. This has been my regular ride ever since completion in September 2010; it can cover the distance on an all day ride, but really brings a grin to my face when the going gets technical.