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Liked a comment on the item We Rode the FOX Pros' Bikes, Prototypes and All - Enduro Edition 10/18/2014 9:48 AM

So cool to hear the fast guys talk about their setups, at the end of the day they are just like the rest of us, find a setup they like and feel fast on then leave it, except their idea of fast and ours are a world apart

Added reply in a thread Should the World Cup Downhill season have more races? 10/15/2014 1:58 PM

Interesting. I would have thought it was too costly and too much of a headache to drag a team all over the world all year. Seems like it's the bureaucracy(surprise, surprise) who is causing the majority of the bottleneck in the situation. It has to be ... more ยป

Added a comment about video Winning with Team Robot 10/8/2014 10:13 AM
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Hmm. I recognize some of this as the Sandy Clam. I wonder where some of the other trails lie.

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This video has 2 comments.

Added reply in a thread 2015 Racing Rumours - MTB Musical Chairs 10/7/2014 9:26 AM

Good for Danny! At this point the man should get PAID.

Liked a comment on the item 2014 Red Bull Rampage Results, Andreu Lacondeguy Victorious 9/30/2014 5:45 AM

I go to mountain bike news sites and then get mad when I see mountain bike news there.

Liked a comment on the item Red Bull Rampage Helmet Cam and POV Runs 9/28/2014 5:28 PM

So very not capable of relating to any of that. SIIICK!!!

Liked a bike check Yeti SB66C 9/27/2014 11:48 PM
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Liked a comment on the item Red Bull Rampage 2014 Qualifying Run 1 Highlights 9/27/2014 11:47 PM

The announcer is TERRIBLE. Can we please get Rob Warner to do Rampage next year???

Liked a comment on the item Aggy Goes Deep at Rampage with 76-Foot Drop 9/26/2014 10:21 AM

No jokes about wings here cause he's a monster!

Added a product review for Mavic Alpine XL Clipless Shoe 9/23/2014 7:53 PM
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Might this be the best non-Italian shoe for your feet? Well...minus a stormtrooper mistaken appearance.

Rating:

The Good: Fit, weight, flex, price, grip, support

The Bad: Look, neoprene boot practically useless, pressure points up top

Overall:

So, I had been rocking XC shoes since back in the day where I was dragged kicking and screaming into the world of SPDs. Mashing the pedals on the slippers is great because they're stiff as a 4x8 but because of the top section of my foot they were constantly falling asleep. Why? Well...because they were essentially being smashed against a 4x8 super stiff carbon board. I wasn't quite ready to dive into the world of flat pedals as I've gotten nice and used to the laziness of floating my feet around. Besides, my aging knees creak and moan at the mention of flat pedals. Fair enough.

What would be the compromise? I wanted a shoe that had a good stiffness to it but not so much as to restrict the capillaries from receiving their mandated blood flow to keep the piggies going to market. After all, nobody wants to make it to market and then pass out. Right? I also didn't want to sacrifice the off the bike climbing qualities of an XC shoe(really? they do OTB?) to have a skate shoe look(and grip). I wanted a front box that would maybe flex so that walking wouldn't be painful or torturous or feeling like I had a set of roman 4x8 bricks strapped to my foot like XC slippers can sometimes exhibit. I was also tired of the Cinderella slipper looks of XC shoes(and the required spandex wear) but also didn't necessarily find any skate shoes with lugged soles either. Am I searching like Goldilocks? Am I impossible to please? Bear with me here.

I tried them on at the store and they just slipped on. I'm not Goldilocks. I'm Cinderella. And I'm going to the ball mofo! They fit like a glove. That said, Mavic has always made shoes for me feet(adidas included). I have a high arch and a high arching top half to my foot. Now, while few shoes will deal with the top half of my foot, I also wanted to be able to fit in my orthotics and these have enough volume inside for that. But I found there wasn't a ton of need for the orthotics. The included insoles seem to work just fine. For once, I found myself riding and not feeling like I had to constantly adjust my shoes. I don't seem to have the upper section pressure like other reviewers I have seen across the web. The lacing system works really well for me. It's pretty no nonsense and easy to work. I have even marked the perfect spot with a sharpie to try to attain the perfect fit(knowing it will likely stretch over time). Anyway, I can go to the dance now because the shoes fit. The best part is I can drive to the dance in these if I'm running late. These are the first shoes I've ever a. felt comfortable enough to drive in and b. don't even notice half the time that I'm wearing bike shoes fully laced while driving and c. driven in while not transporting someone to a hospital.

Now, would you be seen at the dance in these? No. Absofuckinglutely not! Well, unless you always rock white pants. They are ugly. Over the years Mavic has never either understood aesthetic or they're just proud French. I'm gonna lean towards the latter because they still insist everyone wants yellow. Luckily, these are the white shoe(the yellow is their top tier). One thing they DO have going for them is they don't use Mavic's ratchet system. I've had little luck with their ratchets over the years and they're like finding a unicorn in a magical forest. I've been lucky enough to find one replacement set over the years. They are just really hard to track down. I wanted a strap. I got a strap. And it's durable as anything out there with super strong velcro. These won't win you any style points but they keep dirt a little bit to make your friends forget about them enough to stop making fun of your moon boots. That said...they're waterproof(minus the tongue which has mesh) enough to keep me comfortable even in the mild winters of the NorthWet. I've worn them in all conditions save for snow and they've never really bothered me and I've never felt like I had to put my shoe covers on them.

Let's get to the performance...shall we? Well, I was looking for a good stiffness but a decent front box flex. Wow! It's like Mavic was listening to me and heard my siren call. They have a great stiffness to them on the back 2/3. As a matter of fact they're likely not an XC super T89a24.1104 OSHA carbon footbed missing soccer spikes up front but I'm yet to say "man I wish these were more stiff!". The front toe box flexes for hike-a-bike and is the perfect balance. They are like wearing the perfect footbed with the right flex for real mountain biking. We're not tiptoeing through rocks like an XC racer. We're mountain bikers. We have suspension. But when we screw up and have to get off or you're rehiiking a section these are as comfortable as they get with superb grip. I had no issue with cleat clearance either. Using my Time cleats there's plenty of space all around and I've never had issues clipping in.

So, really, is there much to fault with these? No. They're light, they have the perfect flex, they fit great(on my feet) and at $120 they're a complete steal. What's to dislike? Well, unless you're a total Star Wars nerd they're pretty stormtrooper-like and the neoprene cuff on the top is relatively useless(I get a lot of small pine needles and pebbles inside). Even more important: they're really hard to find! But if you can find them you should try them. They're a well thought out and well executed shoe for the every man who uses cheater pedals.

This product has 3 reviews

Added a comment about product review Tested: Magura MT7 Disc Brakes 9/23/2014 6:32 PM
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Know what I love about seeing reviews on Vital? The fact that it's on a used bike and not being tested on a $12k rig. Let's us know that the user really knows the bike and knows what to expect when changing a component rather than judging based on riding some hot new super bike. Kudos!

This product_review has 8 comments.

Liked a comment on the item Rapid Fire: Geoff Gulevich 9/19/2014 6:28 PM

Added a comment about feature Vital MTB Weekly Photo Comp - Presented by Fi'zi:k 9/19/2014 6:34 AM
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Nobody seems to get off on those anymore.

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This feature has 3 comments.

Liked a comment on the item Vital RAW - Best of 2014 9/18/2014 10:58 AM

idk, Pinkbike's format probably would have been better.

Just kidding Vital, that was freakin' awesome!

Liked a comment on the item Vital RAW - Best of 2014 9/18/2014 10:58 AM

Zero transitions, zero filters, zero f-cks given - what a compilation...full-on and rowdy, just like we like it.

Added a comment about video Vital RAW - Best of 2014 9/18/2014 10:58 AM
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This video has 36 comments.

Added a product review for Fox Racing Launch Pro Knee Guard 9/13/2014 7:31 PM
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Bombproof protection that won't let you down

Rating:

The Good: Tough, rugged, stout, kevlar stays in tact, pads stay in place, cheap

The Bad: Bulky which leads to sweaty knees in warmer climates, slide on only so you have to wear them all the ride.

Overall:

I finally got tired in my old age of wrecking(especially in wet winters) and bruising or scraping my knees. No, I'm not down on my knees as much as you may be thinking. But on a slick log over in December you can end up bouncing all your body parts and bruising more often than not. Also, with the advent of enduro riding(sarcasm) you just HAVE to have pads now, right? Not one to be left out on the trend I got my 800mm bars and knee pads.

All kidding aside these things have fit well from day one. I don't have robust legs and wear a size medium in these pads. They have always been good about staying in place and don't feel obtrusive while pedaling up hill. As a matter of fact they feel comfortable in all situations. The only time you're REALLY gonna notice these is on a warm day and having to pedal hard. These aren't very breathable because they have protection everywhere but right behind your knee. So you are going to sweat in these bad boys. But the protection is worth it. It's a hard plastic knee pad surrounded by a kevlar cover and believe you me that kevlar works! I have had some high speed wrecks where if I wasn't wearing knee pads my knees would be torn up. The side pads do their job as a firm foam.

These come in at a great price point and hold up over time. After a year and a half and at least three major wrecks(with a broken clavicle in there) they show one nick on the left pad. I know I've ground to a halt on the pads twice and you wouldn't even know it. I keep washing them and they look just as good as day one. I highly suggest these to anyone. If they could make them so that you don't have to slide them on and they would stay in place I'd easily give these a 5. Otherwise they get a 4.5. Superb product.

This product has 2 reviews

Added a product review for ODI Lock-On Grip - Rogue 9/13/2014 7:23 PM
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This would likely be the grip for those who want a fat grip

Rating:

The Good: Locks on with no problem

The Bad: The thick grip isn't made for my hands, heavy, spendy

Overall:

My bike came with these initially and I thought I liked them. Well, at least I liked them for the climbing portion of the trail. They offered a lot of cush for pulling on the handlebars. When it came time to go downhill though my hands cursed the very existence of all that padding. I wasn't into the cush and my hands started to hurt after extended downhills. The issue became exacerbated with repeated days in the saddle. I believe I found these to just be too thick for my paws and had to resign them to the parts bin. I ended up going for some ODI Vans grips and have found those to be my thickness.

If you need big grips these might be your ticket. I prefer thin grips and the feel they offer. It's kind of like saddles...to each their own.

This product has 6 reviews

Liked a comment on the item 2014 Power Rankings - Armchair Racing Recap 9/11/2014 7:46 AM

You mean like what happened when we DID ask.... HERE? HA! We'd at least expect the collective wisdom of "the trenches" to have coughed up Troy's name, he did end up winning after all. Back to the media room with that lot.