I've left the page open in my browser for over a week now, and I'm still not sure exactly how I feel about the new T1 SFA.
The way I see it, there are two options.
1) It's awful.
2) It's great.
I suppose one could argue that there's a middle ground between those two, but I've never been much for compromise. Grey doesn't interest me. And compelling arguments can be made for either side:
1) It's awful. T1 has gone from making recognizable, niche-filling frames to joining the masses in the sub-five-pound, Supertherm, skinny-tubed dune buggy category. The new GB has a lot in common with the new FBM Howler, which is all well and good, except why not just get a Howler? Also, someone at Solid forgot to remove the mockup chainstays and put in the capped ones. Those things are so—wait, those are real? Um, not to nitpick, but it seems odd when a pegless pedal grinder's signature frame has a sketchier chainstay/dropout junction than an old Skyway T/A. And the uncapped/capped style, blech. It just looks unfinished.
2) It's great. About time T1 joined the party. Making unique frames that are worshipped by old kooks is a cool concept and all, but it's not a sound business plan, especially when the BMX pie is getting smaller and smaller and being sliced into more and more pieces every day. Romanticize T1 all you want—long live the Barcode!—but the reality is that if you don't offer a sub-five frame these days, fond memories are all you'll have left. And hey, at least it has chainstay brakes and takes a seatpost clamp. Small victories. Plus, if Garrett likes it, who the fuck are you to hate on it?
I suppose if I'm gonna be realistic, I have to lean towards the latter. I want T1 to survive, and if doing a four-pound, five-ounce frame helps them do it, more power to 'em. (Putting out the goddamn stem someday would help, too.) But I still hate those chainstays.