- Bike Checks
The Vital Bike Check section is full of sexy steeds, the most drool-worthy of which get featured as Bike of the Day for us all to lust over. Beyond the obligatory banger build (and maybe a good picture to do it justice), a touch of originality is a sure-fire way to see your pride and joy on the front page for the world to admire. Vital members are a creative bunch when it comes to building bikes, so we wanted to find out more: which brands earned the most BODs in 2016? What suspension do people run? What kind of bikes make it through the selection process? We looked through 329 BODs with frames from 82 brands (!) to bring you answers to these questions and more. Stat Attack!
And the winner is...drum roll...Santa Cruz Bicycles! With a tally of 24 BODs to its name, the Cali crew takes home the top spot for 2016. From the Highball to the V10, Santa Cruz makes bikes for everybody, and they all have one thing in common: lots of riders love to come up with sweet custom builds to turn their frames into special bikes. That also means that if you own one and you want to earn BOD, you have your work cut out for you if you want to impress us.
Was there one particular model that stood out in the 2016 stats? That would be the Specialized Enduro. This versatile and highly acclaimed do-it-all shredder also turns out to make a fine BOD candidate. With everything from wallet-whopping S-Works builds to more modest everyman's rides, the sassy shredder from the big-S is always on the short list when it comes time to pick the BODs - as evidenced 10 times this year.
You probably think you know the answer to this question already, but this Stat Attack showed that one type of bike stands head and shoulders above the others when it comes to building rad rides: the Enduro bike. To be clear: we assigned the E-word label to denote a hard-hitting, 160mm-or-so travel machine built to shred the downs. DH followed in distant second place, with Trail bikes rounding out the podium. At the bottom of the table, Spomer's perennial favorite, the fat bike, proves once again that the important thing is not winning, but participating. #everyonesawinner
After picking a frame, most riders will worry about suspension. No big surprises in the stats here: RockShox and FOX dominate the BOD section as they do on the trail. RockShox holds the edge when it comes to forks, while FOX takes top box in the rear shock department. DVO has come a long way in a few short years, and the green goods are always in high demand when it comes to putting together a dream build with custom parts. Vital-approved color schemes like the one below helped them earn 3rd place for their troubles. Interestingly, just above half (51.7%) of the BODers prefer to stick with the same brand for both fork and shock on their builds, while the remaining half mix and match.
Now you know what's most likely to get you BOD in 2017! If you haven't done so already, make sure you share your bike in our Bike Check section to be in the running for Vital MTB Bike of the Day.