Constant Varying Arc is Niner’s unique and patented, award-winning mountain bike suspension design. The CVA system is the only established suspension design on the market that was optimized around the 29” wheel since inception. Because of this fact, CVA has solidified its reputation for remarkable pedaling efficacy while remaining fully active around today’s larger wheel size while our competition struggles to adjust their suspension systems. More powerful than reading about CVA is to join us at a Niner Demo and experience it first hand.
Why is CVA important when talking about mountain bike suspension? Many suspension designs, especially some parallel link designs, try to achieve pedaling efficiency by anticipating what size chainring will be used most, and are then targeted at the ‘virtual’ pivot location this creates. This means that the potential for pedaling performance will always be compromised if not used with the design specific chainring size.
CVA works very differently from other suspension designs. CVA’s linkage system works independently of chainring size and isolates pedaling forces by creating an ‘instant center’ location in front of the drivetrain. To illustrate, when a rider cranks on the pedals, the chain is trying to pull the lower link down and away from the bottom bracket, and the upper link in its regular, upward rotational path. Because of the lower pivot’s orientation, the force from chain tension pulls the two linkages in opposite directions regardless of chainring size. This effectively isolates the drivetrain from the rear triangle, and since the rear triangle is one piece, these opposing forces cancel each other out. That means the only outlet for pedal force is turning the rear wheel, and that’s exactly what you want.
CVA also manages chain growth to further isolate pedaling forces from suspension performance. Past the rearward-most position at sag, the axle path moves in towards the bike at a gradual, Constantly Varying Arc. This ensures that there is minimal chain growth throughout the length of travel, which reduces pedal feedback in the drivetrain while cycling the suspension, essentially isolating it from the fully active movement of the suspension design.
Coupling pedaling efficiency and fully active suspension is the ideal scenario for any mountain bike. Certainly economy of motion is critical when talking about race oriented and cross country bikes. And even though most longer travel, trail bike riders aren’t counting seconds overland or on the climbs, efficiency is just important for them. Put simply, CVA’s efficiency can help any rider go farther, faster and have more fun.
The adaptability of CVA across a broad range of full suspension bike categories is mirrored by its suitability when considering wheel sizes on those bikes. CVA has a great track record when used with 29” wheels, but with the introduction of 27.5” plus wheels we’ve sought to expand the application of the system beyond what we’ve historically done. The JET and RIP are offered in both 29” and 27.5” plus versions that share the same suspension feel and efficiency. These bikes beautifully illustrate what a robust and capable suspension system CVA has become.
Ultimately, there are many variables in suspension, but history has shown us that we did a lot of things right the first time with CVA. It’s proven itself an incredibly robust suspension platform that has only gotten better with the enhancements we’ve made along the way. But don’t take our word for it; see for yourself. Go test ride a Niner full suspension bike.
CVA IS PATENTED (U.S. Patent No. 7,934,739)
CVA is a unique, award-winning suspension design and has been recognized with a US Patent.