4li2k73z Share your Vital activity on Facebook (More info)

awol12's Product Reviews

Added a product review for SRAM PG-950 9-Speed Cassette 4/25/2015 7:12 PM

Smooth Shifting All Day


The Good: Smooth shifting Multiple gear ranges Inexpensive SRAM/Shimano compatible

The Bad: Heavy Steel


This came as an OEM cassette and has provided years of flawless shifting. This cassette comes in at a budget friendly price and offers great quality as well.Compatiblity with SRAM and Shimano makes changing/upgrading other components a simple task.

This cassette shifts very smoothly and any shifting issues I have encountered have come from the derailleur and not the cassette. The cassette stays super clean and sheds mud and other debris on its own.

The SRAM PG 950 is easy to find with many online retailers and offers multiple gear ratios to fit different styles.

Whether your are running this as a weekend warrior or a daily rider it will not disappoint.

This product has no reviews yet.

Added a product review for Race Face Narrow/Wide Chainring 4/25/2015 6:36 PM

Narrow/Wide = Simply/Awesome!!!


The Good: Light and strong Variety of colors Variety of sizes DIY simple setup

The Bad: Color wears fast


Does Race Face do anything bad? Cause the Narrow/Wide ring is spot on and near perfect in every way. SRAM kicked off the whole 1X setup, but Race Face made it accessible for the masses by creating this bolt-on simple and inexpensive ring.

I have been riding a 104 32T for about a year and have been so happy with it. I bolted it up to a slightly heavy Gravity StepUp crank set and it really brought new life to these cranks. I was never using the big and spent most of my time in the middle, so it was a no brainer to get rid of all the extra pieces that weren't being used and just adding unneeded weight.

Set up was super simple and only required some smaller chainring bolts. I went with Race Face hardware and also their bolt shims, but you could use any type of chainring bolts and washers that fit.

Adding the narrow/wide also makes riding and maintance so much easier. Having the narrow/wide means no more thinking about what front ring I should be in, all I need to worry about is where I should be in the back. Going to one ring in front also means no more front mech to maintain or additional rings to check. This makes riding and the whole bike much more simple.

Only minor, and very minor, complaint is how quickly the color wears off. The color has only worn off the teeth so far, and since they are in constant contact with the chain that is no surprise, but I image that color will wear from the rest of the ring fairly quickly too.

Overall I am highly satisfied. Others have mentioned dropped chains, but I have not dropped one. For anyone that goes mostly downhill or spends their time on fairly flat trails will definitely love a 1X setup and you can't be the simplicity and price of the Race Face Narrow/Wide.

This product has 6 reviews.

Added a product review for Syncros AM20 Handlebar 4/21/2015 6:09 PM

Just Not Enough


The Good: 31.8 Freeish

The Bad: Small Width Flexy Scratches easy


This was oem bar and came within a week. This bar really isnt' much more than an inexpensive filler for a complete bike. The bar is way to thin at only 670mm and felt super cramped when riding. This bar was also flexy for being thin. Any time going over anything bumpy or really pumping and this bar moved at the ends.

Only good part was that is a 31.8 so that leaves lots of options with the stem for another bar. This bar wouldn't be bad for a city/commuter bike were you want a mountain bike feel, but aren't going to be hit a lot of rough terrain.

This product has no reviews yet.

Added a product review for Topeak Alien II Folding Tool 26 Function 4/20/2015 7:02 PM

Lots of Tools in a Small Package


The Good: Great variety of tools All metal tools Chain holder Break apart design

The Bad: Pocket heavy Not a shop tool replacement Plastic can flex


Topeak's Alien line of multitools has been progressing for sometime now and this version is top-notch. The Alien has a great variety of tools and the metal constuction feels solid, but the plastic frame can be flexly for certain jobs.

The break apart design is one that sets this tool apart and allows you to integrate the different sides. The chain breaker is a great example as it uses the hex wrench to turn the breaker pin in. The breaker works so well on this tool that I have never purchased a more shop specific one. Also love the included chain holder, fits perfect and means no more homemade ones from spokes or other wire.

Don't be fooled into thinking this is a pocket tool though, it's not that light. This is a pack tool and a very good one that doens't take up a ton of space. It's also not a replacement for decent shop tools. This is a great trail side, but not built for heavy wrenching. I have found that trying to remove items like cranch bolts or peddles aren't going to happen. This tool won't give you enough tork and it'll hurt your hand a bit.

Overall for the price and variety you can't do too wrong with this one and for the right price it's hard to beat.

This product has no reviews yet.

Added a product review for Shimano Deore Disc Brake M596 4/20/2015 6:27 PM

Deore = Unbeatable Quality and Price


The Good: Solid build Split bar clamp Good modulation Comfortable lever

The Bad: Reach adjustment Sucks to bleed


Got these as a replacement for some Hayes and have always had good luck with Shimano and the Deore line. These brakes stay true to the Shimano way of Deore being a great price point match to great quality.

Feel of these are the bar is sport on. The angle of the master cyclinder puts the levers and a great spot. The levers themselves our a great feel and comfortable. Levers feel great whether you use two finger or one finger braking. Modulation is also smooth and realibable. Reach is adjustable, but would love to have a dial on these instead of the allen wrench adjustability they have.

Setting these up is great and the split clamp is awesome so you don't have to remove everything else on your bars. One complaint with setting these up however is the whole bleed/adding fluid process. Shimano's weird bucket system is way over complicated and should definitely be modified for their more simplistic style fo the past.

All and all another homeroom for Shimano and the Deore line of components.

This product has 2 reviews.

Added a product review for Shimano LX Disc Brakes M585 4/20/2015 6:02 PM

Can't be Beat - If You Can Find Them


The Good: Solid lever Great modulation Easy to Bleed

The Bad: no lever adjustment (reach)


These are some of the best brakes I have ever used. Perfect example of set and forget. Had these for three years and never had a problem with them. These brakes are the perfect example of affortability and excellence that Shimano offers.

Bought these as aftermarket replacements for some mechanical disks and was greatly impressed with them being bleed and ready right from Shimano. Didn't even have to bleed them for entire year.

Brakes always had a solid feel and levers never felt flexy. Modulation is great on these and were the brakes that tought me harder isn't better.

Only thing that would make them better would be reach adjustment, as the levers feel a bit far out. Not gonna knock Shimano too heard on this because that's why they have XT and XTR.

If you can find these get them, great as a back up or regular use, you won't be disappointed.

This product has no reviews yet.

Added a product review for Hayes Disc Rotor V-Cut 4/20/2015 5:23 PM

Too Much!!!


The Good: rotors stay clean includes mounting hardware

The Bad: Heavy draggy feeling


These came stock with Hayes brakes on a complete bike and came off quickly.

Even with all the cut-outs these are HEAVY rotors. From the start these brakes felt draggy and only really slowed when I was clamping down hard. Thought maybe is was just break in and gave them some time, but it never got any better. Switched out the Hayes Light Weights and finally got some good brake feeling.

Still have these rotors, but I think they become a clock or someover cool looking wall art.

This product has no reviews yet.

Added a product review for Fox Racing Ranger Shorts 2011 4/20/2015 5:08 PM

Fox Got it Right On


The Good: Light weight True to size fit Adjustable waist Usable pockets Comfortable chamois

The Bad: Fabric snaggs easily


Great riding short from Fox! Super light weight and comfortable and with the chamois included makes them even better. Fit is spot on. I ordered a 32 and they fit perfect without having to adjust at all, but if needed they do have velcro adjustment in the waist. Length is also perfect; just over the knee when standing and right about it when seated. The length and weight make these shorts that don't get in your way at all. Having the Pro Form chamois is also a bonus. The chamois isn't over padded or under padded, it's just right. Wish more companies would include chamoises with their shorts, go Fox!

Since they are cargos, better talk about those. These are small pockets, but very useful on shorter rides. Perfect size for throw a set a keys on one side and a wallet in the other, but I wouldn't throw much more than that. Since the shorts are very light weight over filling the pockets definately gives a bit of a saggy filling and the shorts rock around a lot from the extra stuff.

Only real complaint on these shorts is the material. The polyester is soft and comfortable, but also snaggs easily. These are not DH shorts or even all mountain really. If Fox toughened up the fabric a bit they would be 5 stars for sure.

This product has no reviews yet.

Added a product review for Troy Lee Designs Sprint Jersey 4/20/2015 1:44 PM

Great All-Around Jersey


The Good: Light weight Price Quality construction Elastic sleeve cuff

The Bad: Nothing so far!


This is my go to, ride anything, all-day jersey.Mesh like fabric keeps you cool and perfect over a base layer t-shirt or nothing at all. Long sleeves don't heat you up, even on hot days, and give that extra bit of protection.

I have been wearing this jersey for a couple of seasons and it has held up great. It's gone through washes and a few really good spills and is still going strong. Elastic sleeve cuffs are also great and stops your sleeves from flapping around when going fast.

For the price and quality you can't go wrong with this one.

This product has 2 reviews.

Added a product review for Kenda Nevegal Tire 4/30/2014 5:08 PM

Not The All Arounder They Claim to Be


The Good: rolls downhills well, good drip on softer trails, wears well, good range of tire pressures

The Bad: lots of rolling resistance, not good going up hill, slippery on hardpack,


I have this in 2.35 Stick-E, but don't find to be all that sticky. Like others have said they are also on the heavy side. On the hardpack this tire doesn't grip the best, but when the ground is a bit soft in the early spring or after a decent rain they dig in quite well. Definitely a good tire for going downhill on softer trails, but a bit to much for peddly trails, going up hill more than slightly or serious hardpack. I have been impressed with how they have worn and I have had no problems with sidewall tears, or knobbs tearing off. I have also been impressed with the range of pressures these tires can take, as low as 26psi and as much as 30psi. Definitely could be a lot worse.

This product has 10 reviews.

Added a product review for FSA Step-Up Crank With Bottom Bracket Oe 4/9/2014 6:37 PM

Heavy, Heavy, and Heavy!


The Good: they pedal

The Bad: heavy, cheaper alloy construction, limited ability to modify


These cranks came as OEM on my bike, as it seems they do on many other mid-level bikes. I have ridden them for two yours with no major problems, but also haven't fallen in love with them. The crank arms are really thick which puts on the very heavy side for a double ring and bashguard. I have also had very limited luck with changing these in anyway from how they came. While I understand that the cheaper the product, the less you can do with it, I can't even find a good way to remove the bashguard to lose a little weight. I've looked around and can't even find a shim or spacer from FSA that allow for removal the bashguard. On the upside though, they do pedal smooth, I have smacked them off a few things with only scratches and scuffs to show for it and the heavier weight should make me stronger when I switch to something lighter down the road.

This product has 3 reviews.

Added a product review for WTB Pure V Race Saddle 4/9/2014 6:24 PM

Comfortable and Lite - Poor Construction


The Good: Comfortable and lite

The Bad: tears easily


Have ridden on WTB seats for 10+ years and have always loved them. Picked this seat up on sale and to replace an old seat that getting uncomfortable. When I got it I was happy with the construction, comfort, and weight. On rides it feels good and when you are in the saddle it soft enough to not hurt, substantial enough you don't feel like you'll fall off, but thin enough in the right places that it doesn't rub and you are able to slide around on it when you need too. The big problem has been the poor construction. The model I have came the "diamond" corners on the rear that are supposed to be tear/rip proof; this isn't so. Both rear corners have tears in them after one season of riding. I haven't even put the bike down that hard and I ride dirt trails, no major rocks are other debris. I contacted WTB about this and was surprised to be told that this was considered normal wear (after only one season) and would be covered by any warranty on construction. Still using it now, but will be looking around for something better as the tears are getting larger as the seat is used.

This product has 1 review.

Added a product review for Hayes Stroker Ryde Disc Brake 4/9/2014 6:09 PM

Cheap Price and Cheap Quality


The Good: Inexpensive

The Bad: Low quality, no power, cheap alloy construction, wiggly handles


Came as OEM and were one of the first items to go. These brakes have no modulation and the only way to get any feelings is to pull them to the bars. And since the handles have a really wobbly, wiggly feel I felt like I was always going to break them. Since they were OEM I thought that maybe there was a bit of air in the lines and that was causing the modulation/power issues so I bleed them. Bleeding did little to nothing at all. Another problem I ran into was the cheap alloy handlebar clamp bolt. The head of the blow is extremely thin and takes absolutely nothing to strip. When trying to make a simple adjustment I stripped a bolt when applying hardly any pressure to loosen it. This was really annoying and took multiple emails to Hayes which resulted with the suggesting of getting a new one at the hardware store. Back in the day Hayes used to be it, but these are brakes a fine a example that they good days may be gone.

This product has 2 reviews.

Added a product review for RockShox Domain 302 Fork 4/9/2014 5:48 PM

Not the Worst. But Definitely Not the Best.


The Good: Thru-axle, rebound adjustment, travel adjustment, 35mm sanctions, smooth travel down

The Bad: bouncy, no compression adjustment, bottoms out in lowest height setting


This came as the OEM on bike and I haven't the money to purchase a new fork. I don't hate this work, but I definitely don't love it or would buy it as an aftermarket choice. The overall looks and feel are good, minus the very bland chrome sanctions. Fork travel is smooth when compressing, but bouncy on the rebound. I made adjustments to both the travel and rebound, great to have those available, but haven't found a sweet spot that really works well for me. This fork is also very bouncy while pedaling, both on flatter ground and when going up hill. I try not to do to much pedaling up hill, but when I do have to this fork bounces like crazy when you move even a little bit of weight forward. I have also found that when the travel is cranked all the way down the fork has a tendency to bottom out a bit to easily. Since finding this I have kept dialed all the way up to the 160mm setting and left it alone. I will say though on the positive side, it is a strong fork with little to no flex. The 35mm sanctions keep it strong. I also love and have had no problems with the 20mm Maxel. Overall I would definitely not steer towards this fork When money becomes available this will be an item getting replaced asap.

This product has 1 review.

Added a product review for Race Face Respond Handlebar 4/9/2014 5:26 PM

Great Bar, Great Price from Iconic Brand


The Good: Wide, lite, strong, very little flex (if any), clean graphics, rise options

The Bad: more color options would be great


Love this bar! Was looking for something with a low rise and a bigger width, but  didn't  have the money to drop on the more expensive Atlas or Turbine models. When I got the bar I was a tad skeptical if it would live up the Race Face name for the low price; I am not skeptical anymore. The width is great; not crazy wide, but not XC skinny and the low rise is a perfect feel and position. The width opens up the cockpit a bit and feels great for turns. The added width gives some good added leverage to get up and over things. The bars are strong and lite and I have never felt any flex in them whatsoever. I wouldn't definitely recommend these to riders on a budget or anyone not worried about color options. I would say though that I would definitely throw down a few dollars more on this bar if Race Face were to offer some colors besides black.

This product has 1 review.

Added a product review for ODI Lock-On Grip - Rogue 4/9/2014 4:57 PM

Too BIG a Grip!


The Good: Grippy, wear well

The Bad: Too thick and very hard compound, very little feeling, cause hand, arm fatigue, scary small lock-on bolts, spinning on bar


Rode with the Rouges for two years and was always happy until I switched. Found after switching that these grips were too much. The grip compound is hard and thick which translates to very little feeling while riding. The thickness and hardness, I found after changing, actually made me grip the bars harder which caused more hand and arm fatigue while riding. Also found that, that extra grip caused these to loosen up the lock rings and start to spin overtime. I always tightened down to suggested torque, but still has issues and always was a little concerned about over tightening the small bolts ODI uses on the lock rings. I ended up changing to ODI Ruffians and would not go back to these again.

This product has 6 reviews.

Added a product review for Deity Enoki Grip 4/9/2014 4:45 PM

Best Grips Ever


The Good: Mushroom style supper grippy, comfortable, lock-rings hold strong, included bar end caps

The Bad: flanges can get in way of shifters


Like many have always run with ODI, but I thought I would give the Deitys a shot. Was totally worth it! Mushroom grip is great. Never feel like I am going to lose grip and are just as comfortable on a short and long ride. Lock-rings are strong and use a larger bolt compared to ODI, so don't worry about stripping them. Love that Deity includes the bar end caps, like that the just fill in bar hole instead of cover over the entire bar end; lock-ring and all. And you can't beat the price! $20 is inexpensive and replacements grips are even cheaper! Love these and will be staying with Deity for the long haul.

This product has 4 reviews.

Added a product review for Shimano XT M772 Shadow 9-Speed Rear Derailleur 6/2/2013 2:45 PM

Smooth Operator


The Good: Clean shifts, reduced chain slap, different cage lengths

The Bad: No clutch, no barrel adjuster


This derailleur showed up as an OE part, but the XT name is always appreciated when looking into Shimano parts. This derailleur is a good mid to mid-high level 9-speed derailleur option. On the trail the derailleur is very quiet and smooth. The Shadow Tech does a really good job of limiting chain slap, I only really hear noise over the really rough stuff. This shifter also moves very well. If you have it set up properly you won't find this derailleur under shifting or over shifting.

One complaint would be the lack of a clutch, found on the Shadow+ derailleurs. I know you can get the clutch with an upgrade, but it would be nice if Shimano had one derailleur with all the tech in one line instead of 2 or 3 different derailleurs under the XT name. My other little gripe is no barrel adjuster on the derailleur. I know this is kind of an old school thing, but I always liked having the little extra bit of adjustability if the barrel adjuster at the shifter wasn't enough.

Overall another awesome derailleur from Shimano that would be comfortable on anything from am XC to a DH bike.

This product has 1 review.

Added a product review for Shimano SLX SL-M660 Shifter Pod 6/2/2013 10:31 AM

Mid-Level Awesomeness


The Good: Two way shifting (push/pull), custom side to side positioning, crisp index shift, easy to use cable port

The Bad: All plastic casing, no shift level adjustment, no I-Spec compatibility


The SLX shifters came as OE on my bike, but I have been really impressed with what Shimano has done with them. They are a very good choice for a mid-level shifter. My shifters are a 2x9 set up with no gear display. Shifters have a nice crisp index shift, that isn't too hard or too soft. Once you are in a gear you know, and it's definitely not a shifter that will allow you to be in between two gears. Do wish they came with a lever reach adjustment, but this is a feature that you'll find on more expensive shifters.

These shifters do have one really nice custom adjustment feature. The SLX shifter pod and handle bar bracket are two separate pieces. By doing this Shimano also made it so the shifter has multiple side to side positions allowing you to "slide" the shifter closer or further out. Wish that these shifters would have been included in Shimanos new I-Spec, but the SLX SL-M670 I is.

One last thing is the ease of service. The shifters, like many, have a small hole in-between the shift levers for changing out the shifter cable. I recently did this and was done in no time at all. Just make sure to take your time putting the cap back in so you don't strip it out, it is only plastic.

Overall I think this are a great mid level shifter and in the year I have had have done me well. These are shifters that once replaced will definitely be kept as a back up or make their way onto another build.

This product has 2 reviews.

Added a product review for ODI Ruffian Lock-On Grips 6/1/2013 3:38 PM

Good Feeling Grip, Some Lock-On Ring Concerns


The Good: Knurled/diamond pattern, thin grip, great feel, plenty of grip space, no hand slippage

The Bad: Lock-on bolts strip easily, thinness causes quicker wear, bar end caps pop off


Switched from the ODI Rogue to the Ruffian for more feeling, which the Ruffian definitely offers. The Ruffian still sticks with ODIs' tradition of strong grips with great sticky rubber. The Ruffian is a thinner grip pattern that offers a lot of bar feeling, but you don't feel like you are ever going to lose your grip. Also with some thinner grips you feel like to have to hold on tighter since there is less material, but this isn't the case with the Ruffians. I have had these for a year and haven't seen a whole lot of wear, but imagine with less material there will be less life.

One big complaint I do have is in the lock-on ring department. I got the Ruffian grips as refills because I already had the ODI lock-on rings. In my past experience the rings popped onto the grip easily and stayed on. With these Ruffians I actually couldn't just snap on the lock-on ring like in the past. I could get on side of the the lock-on ring on, but then the other side wouldn't snap in. I ended up using a rubber mallet to "massage" the lock-on ring on to grip. While not the greatest way to do it, it worked.

Another issue I have is with the head size and strength of the lock-on ring bolts. While I know these need to be small and light it is really easy to strip these out. Definitely have to be very conscience of how your are tighten them and loosening them.

This product has 11 reviews.