Why That Bike? Evil The Wreckoning

Ifyou've ever cruised our Bike Check section, the largest collection of badass bike builds on the internet, you know that Vital members spare no expense when it comes to radifying their rides. Always on the hunt for a backstory, we reached out to the owners of these six sexy The Wreckonings to find out what went into each project. From the sneakily understated to the out-and-out custom shredder setup, there's something here for every taste. Which one is YOUR favorite?


AMERICAN's Evil The Wreckoning

Age: 32

Where do you live? Albuquerque, NM in a van down by the Rio Grande

Favorite local trail to ride? The illegal ones, obviously!

Why did you pick the Evil The Wreckoning? Uncle Kevin (aka Dr. Evil) told me it was time to be a big boy and to ride a big boy bike. That's the Wreckoning!

Is this Evil The Wreckoning your only bike? No, I also have an Evil Following that contests the Wreckoning as my favorite bike.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? I had my Following before I got a Wreckoning but before that I had a Nomad. You can ask my friends how I liked that bike. lol

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I ride and race the OEM builds on both my bikes except for the wheels.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? The fact that I can go on 30 mile xc rides, win enduro events on it, race DH on it, and all without changing a single part.

What would you change on it? The only thing I can think of are the ball bearings the Luke Strobel through in my down tube when he shipped me the bike. I think that's team issue though, no need for anyone else to worry about that upgrade.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? Until Kevin Walsh kicks me off the team... but I think I'm safe. He told me that I'm lead tambourine.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? Well, I've heard there is so new stuff in the works over at Evil. I think we might see a long-ish travel E-Fat bike called The Vomiting. I might like to try that!

View AMERICAN's Bike Check


Good Guys' Evil The Wreckoning

Age: 39

Where do you live? Upland, CA

Favorite local trail to ride? Santiago Oaks in Orange, CA.

Why did you pick the Evil The Wreckoning? At 6’ 5”, a 29er is a natural fit for me. Moreover, I like the speed that the wheel's size maintains in addition to its ability to roll over anything in its path. Beyond the usual 29er banter, I wanted a long travel bike with a slacked out head angle, long wheels base, long top tube and long reach. For the type of riding I do, I needed a bike with 160mm travel in the front and rear. The Evil was everything I was looking for. It’s stable at high speeds, takes hits well, and climbs great.

Is this Evil The Wreckoning your only bike? No, I have several bikes. I have Intense DVO tracer T275 Carbon that has a very similar custom build as the Evil. Also have another alloy Intense Tracer 275 that I keep as a back up bike and to tow the kids around on the trail-a-bike. Lastly, I keep a Niner WFO9 in British Columbia for when I’m up there for a short trip and need to ride the North Shore, Bear Mtn, or Ledgeview.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? The Wreckoning was a direct replacement for another Niner WFO9 that I had. Last November I snapped the Niner frame in half riding at Hulda Crooks in Redlands, CA. The WFO9 was a great long travel 29er, but I do wish the cockpit was longer. The Evil was a great replacement because of it’s long top tube and reach; I feel great on it.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? This was obviously a pretty serious custom build. I had Roys Cyclery here in Upland, CA build the bike. They are one of the few Evil dealers in SoCal. They did an excellent job on the wheel set. We custom powder coated the spokes blue to match the Evil Frame. The spokes were laced to some Industry Nine boost hubs and some Enve M70 hoops. The Rental Duo stem was also taken apart and powder coated orange to match the orange components like the pedals, hubs, chain, etc. Ronnie Dillan at DVO Suspension custom tuned the Diamond fork for me because I am a big guy and put components through a beating. I replaced the factory Rockshox Monarch with a Cane Creek DB CS. Lastly, I’m a big fan of The Walking Dead. I felt that theme would look great on an Evil, so I enlisted the help of NL Designs in Europe to make custom Evil, DVO, Cane Creek, and Enve graphics that tied in the characters from the Walking Dead comic book series into the bike. I love how it came out.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? That’s a tough question but if I had to choose, I’d say the wheel set. I love custom wheels. All my bikes have them. This set takes the cake. Industry Nine hubs are some of the best hubs on the market. The I9 engagement compounded with the stiffness of the Enves makes this bike a dream to ride. Once you mix in the colors and graphics, it's now very unique to me.

What would you change on it? Nothing. I was stoked that I got one of the first batches of Evil The Wreckonings with a water bottle mount. I can’t tell you how much the bike industry under values the importance of a bottle cage.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? I plan to ride it until the wheels fall off. However, the industry evolves fast and people like me love seeing all the new products that come out. It’s not intentional, but I seem to be upgrading bikes every two years.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? The only other comparable long travel 29er IMO is the Trek Slash. However, it makes no sense to have two similar bikes. I would like to try the XL Pivot Pheonix for a DH rig and a Pivot Firebird for a 275. I sat on a Firebird at Crankworx in Whistler and felt at home on it. Also, Santa Cruz now makes a XXL V10, which I rode around in Whistler last summer and that felt nice.

View Good Guys' Bike Check


Adrian Putz's Evil The Wreckoning

Age: 17

Where do you live? Ammersee, Germany.

Favorite local trail to ride? The trails around the Andechs Monastery are some of my favorite. I prefer anything fast and steep, but generally the riding gets quite good once you get further into the alps.

Why did you pick the Evil The Wreckoning? After moving to Europe recently, I wanted a bike that was specifically built for the riding that my new home (the Alps) would offer. It also had to fit with my riding style, physique and strength. My riding ranges from bike park to multi-day epics to general Enduro riding and racing. The Evil, given its monster truck nature would be ideal for rough chunky terrain, flattening nearly anything on the downhill while still maintaining a relatively effective climbing ability.

Is this Evil The Wreckoning your only bike? No, in addition to the Wreckoning I have a road/cross bike for general training and spin during the cold winter months, as well as an older Santa Cruz Highball for XC racing.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? Before the idea of the Evil came into existence, I was riding a 2015 X01 spec Santa Cruz Nomad. Fresh off the plane after moving to Europe I embarked on a Trans-alp, a multi-day trip across the Alps from Germany to Italy. During this time, while diving straight into what the Alps have to offer, I learned a lot about the bike, the components´ effectiveness in the new environment, as well as my riding style. Throughout the rest of the summer, after bending or breaking nearly everything but the SC frame, I decided that given the riding and my rate of component destruction, it was time to build a bike that would be better suited to my new environment and evolving riding style.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I customized the build because I had a specific vision of what the Wreckoning could be. I wanted a stiff and efficient package that would take me up and down with minimal worry about parts breaking or getting replacement parts. As a result of having an aggressive and powerful riding style, my components tend to have very limited lifetime, therefore it was especially important to have high durability parts where I would be able to replace nearly any part of the bike, all the way to individual screws. Therefore, I chose the predominantly Hope spec. My choice of One-Ups 50-tooth upgrade, a dual-air fork, and Push Industries incredible Elevensix shock would allow for relatively effective climbing on longer self-powered ventures, and Enduro stage climbs, while trying to temper the Wreckonings gnar-eating dowhill attitude on the way up.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? My overall favorite part of the bike is the Push Industries Elevensix shock because of its incredible performance on the uphill and especially the downhill. Furthermore, I am also very happy with the Spank Oozy Trail 345 rims since they have significantly reduced the amount of tire burping with a tubeless set-up, they are stiff, and they have held up longer than any other rims that I have owned. The One-Up 50-tooth addition is also a game-changer, and Hope's quality and durability is undeniable.

What would you change on it? If I could change anything, I would possibly get carbon wheels, such as Wheelworks Flite Wide Carbon with the lifetime impact damage guarantee in order to reduce the weight of the bike for racing. Furthermore, I will most likely purchase a Huck Norris system as well as more protective All Mountain Style Tape in order to up the durability of the build.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? I plan to ride this bike as long as the carbon frame seems to hold, however at the rate at which paint and carbon is chipping that may not be very long. Furthermore, if a new game-changing frame innovation, lighter gearbox systems, or any really revolutionary worthwhile changes in components come along, I will most likely try to sell what I can in order to upgrade. If I am able to join a team in the future that provides support in the form of a bike and components, I would also switch bikes.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? If I could get a new bike, I would try to get the new 2017 Specialized Enduro 29er. The Specialized seems to be a very well- rounded Enduro rocket and given its various innovations seems relatively future proof.

View Adrian Putz's Bike Check


Gil Levy's Evil The Wreckoning

Age: 33

Where do you live? Yokneam, Israel

Favorite local trail to ride? Wadi Raham, Eilat

Why did you pick the Evil The Wreckoning? I tried the bike and I was amazed by its versatile nature. Climbs well and descends like hell on wheels.

Is this Evil The Wreckoning your only bike? Yeah!

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? Transition Patrol Carbon 2016.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? Custom.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? I think it's the Race Face Turbine R wheels.

What would you change on it? The rear shock, I would change the Monarch to a FOX Float X2.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? I don't know, at least until after the summer (after heading out abroad with the bike).

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? Evil The Following.

View Gil Levy's Bike Check


Packersean's Evil The Wreckoning

Age: 52

Where do you live? Santa Barbara, CA

Favorite local trail to ride? Cold Springs

Why did you pick the Evil The Wreckoning? Because it is a long travel 29er with aggressive geometry but steep enough seat tube to climb well. Exceptional reviews. I had a last gen Enduro 29, was looking at the 2017 Enduro and realized the Wreck had nearly identical geo. I like smaller bike companies so I went Evil.

Is this Evil The Wreckoning your only bike? No, I have a Pivot Phoenix DH bike and a Pivot Les hardtail.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? I sold my prev. gen Enduro and my Ibis HD3 to build the Wreck.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I almost always do a custom build as I did with this bike.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? Suspension. I have the PUSH Eleven Six on it and that combined with the FOX 36 and the Evil Delta system provides an amazing suspension.

What would you change on it? A minor thing. I would put the name “Wreckoning” somewhere on the frame.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? 2 years max.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? The brand new Pivot Phoenix.

View Packersean's Bike Check


DownhillColorado's Evil The Wreckoning

Age: 40

Where do you live? Dillon, CO

Favorite local trail to ride? Lenawee Trail. Ride the access road on the front of A-Basin ski area, take a break at the patrol hut up top and enjoy the views at 12,500 feet, then it's a descent of over 3 miles of fast and rocky terrain. It's technically challenging for sure.

Why did you pick the Evil The Wreckoning? I wanted a long travel 29er that could take the abuse of Keystone Bike Park laps, but still be a capable trail bike. I was looking at a Trek Remedy 29 until a friend passed along an article on a bike that Evil was coming out with. After obsessively comparing geometry numbers between the Wreckoning and a few other bikes, I called Evil and talked to Chip. We talked for half an hour about this bike and he had me convinced that I'd like it. I felt pretty good about supporting Evil after that conversation and got on the pre-order list shortly after.

Is this Evil The Wreckoning your only bike? Yes.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? This bike replaced my 2012 Trek Slash 8 and 2010 Specialized Demo 8. Both were great bikes, but I can honestly say my Wreckoning out performs them both.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I built it from the frame up, slowly ordering parts until the frame was available.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? The DELTA system. Other than on long fire road climbs, I leave the shock wide open. It pedals well and snaps out of corners, but uses the travel when I need it to.

What would you change on it? I'm going to change out the saddle, maybe do an 11-46t XT cassette with a 36t up front.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? Hopefully for years. I don't want to think about having to fund another bike build like this anytime soon!

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? Our winters are long here so a fat bike has been on the wish list for awhile.

View DownhillColorado's Bike Check


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1 comment
  • lev

    2/26/2017 2:51 PM

    I'd like the same job Adrian Putz has