Ragley Blue Pig loves nothing more than rolling about in the dirt. The name's been recycled but there's nothing old school about this hooligan hardtail.
A permanent fixture in Ragley’s line up, the Ragley Blue Pig is a 27.5in hardcore chromoly steel hardtail with slack angles and low standover. It’s designed for chucking about on all gradients, up to and including enduro or DH tracks. And, with more reactive 27.5in wheels, it’s equally at home collecting air miles jumping or ripping pump track laps.
Ragley Blue Pig need to know
- A slack-angled 27.5in chromoly steel hardtail that’s designed to rip
- Available in four frame sizes and frame-only option
- Blue Pig Race gets a quality Shimano SLX drivetrain and 4-piston disc brakes
- There’s also a £300 cheaper model with 150mm travel RockShox Yari fork.
Ragley updated the steel chassis last year, and it uses a blend of triple-butted 4130 tubing to tune stiffness and flex in different zones. Warrantied for five years, there’s on-trend, fairly stretched-out geometry, plus latest standards like a bolt-thru 148mm Boost rear axle and internal dropper post routing.
The slim main frame has gussets under both top and downtubes, and a supporting brace at the seat tube junction. ISCG 05 tabs make it easy to fit a chain device which is a good move given how jiggled hardtails can get in the rough stuff.
So the frame isn’t new, but for 2021, there’s an almost flawless kit list including RockShox’s supremely supple Lyrik Select RC fork and a quality Shimano SLX drivetrain. The Maxxis tyres use all the right tread patterns and casings too, including the more protective, mid-weight EXO+ casing and triple compound 3C rubber for superior edge grip and reduced rolling resistance.
Nukeproof’s new Horizon wheels pack 30mm internal rims, a 32-spoke build and thicker sidewalls on the rear rim for extra ding protection – very useful on a hardtail. The hub bearings also get double lip seals and more grease too for better UK longevity.
How it rides
Tweaked over generations and using varied tubing shapes and profiles (and, to an extent, 4130 Chromoly is softer than some steel tubing like Reynolds varieties), Ragley’s frame offers as well-damped ride so it is never overly jarring, and, even with a 63.2º head angle it’s still got a snappy feel to the steering.
On rougher, more downhill-level terrain the rear end follows the ruts, roots and edges as well as you’d expect any hardtail to, and with meaty Maxxis tyres, there’s a nicely muted ride quality on surfaces flecked with small rocks or stones at higher speeds.
With a 308mm BB height and the longer 160mm travel RockShox Lyrik fork, the Blue Pig isn’t quite as slammed as some for carving turns or dragging heels, but you can still snap it in and out of corners though even with the 425mm chainstays. The flip-side being that you get stability on faster, more open terrain. That said, opting for the shorter, medium size frame like I did, does ramp up the urgency in the handling and reactivity.
The relaxed geometry, frame quality and RockShox Lyrik fork really take the sting out of repeated punchy impacts, and the inherent damping in the frame means you don’t get pushed onto the fork as much as some hardtails, which is a plus. Add the natural and neutral steering and comfy climbing position, and the Pig’s recipe is versatile enough for charging down some pretty serious terrain and big days in the saddle.
There’s no escaping £2,200 ticket price. It’s a chunk of cash for a hardtail, but the beauty of Ragley’s package is you can get happy as any pig in the muck without changing a single part.