Yes, I said it. I have a bike just like this-alumunim frame-carbon fork with room for 700x40 tires. Disc brakes and thru-axles make this a sturdy rig for mixed terrain outings.
I find that I can downhill on a bike like this really well-the lighter touch needed for braking means a looser upper body and more ability to control the bike at speed in the loose stuff. Take it from me, I'm a clutz but on a bike like this I have found some speeds that were not in my comfort zone previously.
There were many years that I resisted the disc brake CX thing and I am still on the fence if it is good for CX racing but on the trail this is definitely the way to go, especially for those all-day rides in the mountains.
I have built two other frames like this but this one has the added feature of the internal routing for the rear mechanical disc brake. The Ritchey breakaway/S&S coupler combo was an idea of a customer of mine about a year and a half ago. This new bike was obviously inspired by the two other frames I built.
The bike will have the new Sram wireless 'Etap' shifting system, eliminating the need for any der. cable stops.
The frame will be fitted to a Whiskey #9 fork. The Paragon Machine works 'Poly-drops' are a bit of trouble to work with but they offer a lot of choices for brake mounts or axle specs with just a change of the inserts.
Nothing too modern here, just a straight ahead CX frame in steel. The top tube is nearly level and the tube diameters are a little smaller than what I currently use. No disc brakes, no carbon fork, no Di II, no thru-axles. This is a circa 1998 frame and fork.
The fork has my very last Pacenti P.B.P. crown. I won't be able to get these in the future as Pacenti is shutting down the bikelugs.com site- I'll have to use other stuff once I run out of the stash that I have in stock.
The frame is mostly True Temper with some Dedaccai tubing in the rear triangle and a Nove seat tube. The frame is 3 lb. 13 oz. I wasn't trying to make it light, it just came out that way. It's a pretty small frame.