The Killswitch on PinkBike.com

2011 Black Market Killswitch - Previewed

Nov 25, 2010


Black Market, the originators of arguably the most influential dirt and street frames on the market, have stirred the pot and spread their wings into the world of slope style to produce an equally bad ass slope machine. Carter Holland and the rest of the crew at Black Market Bikes have done the work to know exactly what slope style riders need and want and the result is the 100mm travel Black Market Killswitch.

Check out what the Killswitch has to offer!



Black Market Killswitch


Black Market's origins are deeply rooted in BMX; therefore, keeping things simple, clean, and effective seem to be a priority as portrayed by their newest addition to the family - the Killswitch. In contrast with the Mob or Riot, the Killswitch is manufactured from a 6061 T6 custom aluminum tube set, opposed to the traditional chromoly.  The decision to fabricate the Killswitch from aluminum was a wise one.  Although hardtails flow amazingly on flexible high carbon chromoly steel tube sets, the same is not true for full suspension frames.  Aluminum is stiffer, lighter, and more responsive than steel, which are all essential traits for a full suspension bike, nor will pivot points ovalize as easily when constructed with aluminum.
Black Market's origins are deeply rooted in BMX; therefore, keeping things simple, clean, and effective seem to be a priority as portrayed by their newest addition to the family - the Killswitch. In contrast with the Mob or Riot, the Killswitch is manufactured from a 6061 T6 custom aluminum tube set, opposed to the traditional chromoly. The decision to fabricate the Killswitch from aluminum was a wise one. Although hardtails flow amazingly on flexible high carbon chromoly steel tube sets, the same is not true for full suspension frames. Aluminum is stiffer, lighter, and more responsive than steel, which are all essential traits for a full suspension bike, nor will pivot points ovalize as easily when constructed with aluminum.
The first time I rode a Killswitch was last spring, when Black Market rider Justin Wyper received his prototype.  To my astonishment, the Killswitch handled exactly like a hard tail as I rode steep jumps and tall berms. Pivoting around the 12.5
The first time I rode a Killswitch was last spring, when Black Market rider Justin Wyper received his prototype. To my astonishment, the Killswitch handled exactly like a hard tail as I rode steep jumps and tall berms. Pivoting around the 12.5" high bottom bracket, the Hammer Link floating suspension system felt to offer an extremely stiff and responsive rear end that does not hinder pumping or preloading - this is essential to maintaining speed throughout a set or increasing speed in transitions. This may be the reason for the popularity of the Killswitch, not to mention that it is available in black, gray, purple, and the limited edition polished finish that you see here. One of the goals while designing the Killswitch was to create a bike that handles very similar to a hardtail; this was done by setting parameters on the geometry and working the suspension around that. The Killswitch is available in small with a 21" top tube, medium with 22" top tube, and a large that uses a 23" top tube.

BlackMarket Killswitch details:

  • • Black Market’s Hammer Link design with 100mm of travel
  • • Handmade from 6061 T6 custom tube set with precision cnc’d linkages and yokes
  • • Replaceable nylock nuts and/or threaded inserts at all bolt locations
  • • Custom tuned X-Fusion 02 RCX rear shock 6.5” x 1.5” stroke (included)
  • • 44mm Black Market cartridge sealed bearing headset (included)
  • • Travel - 4"/100mm
  • • Weight - 7 lbs. 10 oz. with shock
  • • Seat clamp - 34.9mm (included)
  • • Seat post - 30.9mm
  • • ISCG 05 mounts
  • Black Market Bikes
  • • $1399 USD MSRP

As slope style events continue to push the envelope with gnarlier jumps and features, riders are demanding small full suspension bikes that can take the punishment.  The Killswitch has an ample 100mm of rear, progressive travel accompanied by the custom tuned for Black Market X-Fusion O2 RCX rear shock (6.5
As slope style events continue to push the envelope with gnarlier jumps and features, riders are demanding small full suspension bikes that can take the punishment. The Killswitch has an ample 100mm of rear, progressive travel accompanied by the custom tuned for Black Market X-Fusion O2 RCX rear shock (6.5" x 1.5" stroke). The O2 RCX was tuned specifically for the Killswitch and slope style and dirt jump riding. The engineers and product designers at X-Fusion collaborated with Carter and Black Market to design a shock which has a large emphasis on high platform suspension systems, in other words, ensuring that the rider does not initially blow through the travel on the terrain leading up to the jump or feature. Furthermore, the 02 RCX has four compression adjustments and finer tuned positive and negative air chambers which all contribute to a more stable ride. The adjustability of this slope style machine accounts for its stability.
Due to the shock choice, geometry, and weight, the Killswitch can be utilized for many genres of riding including slope style, dirt jumping, and even trail riding.  However, the bike definitely excels on big jumps that hard tails may not be stable enough to ride.  With a relatively steep 69 degree head tube angle and a short wheel base, the Killswitch is easy to control and maneuver.  In addition, the Killswitch features an incredibly low stand over which makes for great leg clearance over the top tube and a bit of grace if you miss the pedals and happen to ball-ride out of a landing.
Due to the shock choice, geometry, and weight, the Killswitch can be utilized for many genres of riding including slope style, dirt jumping, and even trail riding. However, the bike definitely excels on big jumps that hard tails may not be stable enough to ride. With a relatively steep 69 degree head tube angle and a short wheel base, the Killswitch is easy to control and maneuver. In addition, the Killswitch features an incredibly low stand over which makes for great leg clearance over the top tube and a bit of grace if you miss the pedals and happen to ball-ride out of a landing.

Black Market Killswitch geometry

Head angle69 degrees
Top Tube22"
Chainstay16"
Bottom Bracket height12.5"
Stand over26"
Wheelbase41.25"


Some other notable features of the Killswitch include an effective and industry standard 1 1/8
Some other notable features of the Killswitch include an effective and industry standard 1 1/8" integrated, zero stack head tube, replaceable horizontal drop outs with derailleur hanger (optional vertical dropouts), and replaceable Nylock nuts and threaded inserts at all bolt and pivot locations. A Black Market zero stack integrated headset is included in the frame and shock package.

Check out Black Market Bikes for more!


As snow lies on the ground here on the West Coast of British Columbia, the Killswitch remains dormant for now. But keep a look out later in the year as I give the Killswitch a run for its money and a full riding review. In the meantime, let's hear what you think of BlackMarket's 4" travel slope style bike - put those opinions down below!

-Reece Wallace

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