Latest Product Reviews

RSS

Race Face Turbine dropper Seatpost

“Most unreliable post I have tried. Buyer beware.”

C138_2015_turbine_dropper_post_2

The Good:

Short height allows longer travel post in some frames.

The Bad:

Horribly unreliable. Sent my 150mm back 3 times in 6 months.

Overall Review: I have gone through many droppers searching for a reliable option. Had spotty luck with reverbs. Had a Thompson fail. Then this new post with a mechanical braking mechanism comes out. Great right, seems like someone might have figured out a good reliable system. Well 2 friends and I each ordered up a 150 version (the best option for over 125mm dropper option we thought) Less than a month later I bought my girlfriend a new bike that came with a 125 which was too long so I replaced it with the 100mm version. All is well for 3-4 weeks when friend #1's dropper starts loosing air pressure. A week or so later mine does Read More »

Race Face Next R Cranks

Vital Review

“Tested: Race Face Next R Carbon Crank”

C138_p5pb14630287
Race Face has over the past couple of years been busy expanding their lineup of cranks to the point where they have an option available for any riding style and any budget. However, that is not to say that there isn’t room for something more – and for 2017, that something is the R family of components. In case you wonder what the R stands for, it’s rally. And rally, as we all know, translates to riding your bike. Slotting into the range in between the ultra-light Next and the DH-rated SixC product families, the Next R carbon cranks aim to combine the best of two worlds in a package that should be up for pretty much any kind Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member iceman2058
94 iceman2058 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/94/avatar/c50_johan_1385064431.jpg?1385063576 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/iceman2058,94/all 08/01/09 751 94 1111 1686 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/iceman2058,94/setup 62 390 4315 119 29

2018 Rocky Mountain Instinct Carbon 50 Bike

“Rocky Mountain Instinct Carbon 50”

C138_instinct275plusgeo

The Good:

Carbon fiber front triangle

The Bad:

Aluminum rear triangle

Overall Review: Rocky Mountain Instinct The Rocky Mountain Instinct is a great full suspension mountain bike for a trail and cross-country rider, because of its frame, wheel size, and suspension. First, Rocky Mountain makes five frames for the Instinct. There are two aluminum models that Rocky Mountain offers. One model that has a carbon fiber front triangle and an aluminum rear triangle, and two models that have a full carbon fiber frame. The difference in weight between all of the frames is only a couple of pounds. This is because on a carbon fiber frame, they have to beef up certain parts of the frame so that it is strong Read More »

Race Face Turbine dropper Seatpost

Featured Member Review

“Race Face Turbine dropper Seatpost”

C138_2015_turbine_dropper_post_2

The Good:

4 travel options, low psi suggesting longer service intervals, saddle stays locked in place when lifting bike from saddle, plenty of set-up and trouble shooting guidance.

The Bad:

Lever sold separately, mandatory 2-3mm lever play for proper performance

Overall Review: If I could travel back in time, ten years from now and told you that dropper seatposts were going to become a standard component in biking you would probably be pretty stocked. If I told you that you’d be spending $350+ for that very dropper post, you’d most likely be a lot less excited. Well, It’s the year 2017 and that’s where we find ourselves. There is good news however because, since so many companies are making droppers now, you can find them for around $200 and even less if you buy used. Ever since the dropper posts started taking off, one thing has remained a struggle. Has anyone made a completely Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member dirtworks911
14755 dirtworks911 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/14755/avatar/c50_14881538_1588539877838281_1800798274_o_1477766735.jpg?1477766635 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/all 04/09/12 6 2 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/setup 1 2 38 97

Guerrilla Gravity The Smash Frame

“A fast, versatile and efficient ride”

C138_2017_gg_the_smash_raw

The Good:

Fast, versatile and efficient. RAW aluminium!

The Bad:

The serif on the lettering makes for easy pealing, limited standover height might be an issue for some.

Overall Review: I’ve ridden over 150 miles on The Smash, here’s what stands out from my experience, YMMV. But first, here’s a little POV action: 2 minutes | Riding a Guerrilla Gravity The SMASH! https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-CojT6fpEpDU-ZNkRBNbqw You can browse myYouTube channelfor other POV filmed on the Smash. FAST! This bike really like to go fast, I can see why it's written on the top tube. It feels likes the bike generate speed by itself. It’s pleasure to ride hard and to attack even the mellowest trails. As GG puts it:Here at Guerrilla Gravity, we build highly-refined mountain bikes that are optimized for speed. I can Read More »
Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member zeGG
45330 zeGG /images/default/avatar/c50.png http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/zeGG,45330/all 09/28/17 2

2018 Giant Trance 2 Bike

“2018 Giant Trance 2 XT Drivetrain”

C138_trance_2_2018_color_b_neon_red

The Good:

Love both Fox Shocks and all the adjustability. Swapped out the SLX for all XL components including 32T from chain ring and cranks. Went with the Sunrace 11x46 cassette and KMC Gold-SL chain. Love the 2.4" High Roller IIs

The Bad:

Had to change out the seat for a MTB team saddle. Giant saddle was a little tough.

Overall Review: This bike has taken me to the next level.  Very confidence inspiring with its suspension travel and the 2.4" wide Maxxis High Roller II tires.  It shreds twisty singletrack, climbs very confidently, and takes rocky/rooty descents like a champ!  

Leatt DBX 3.0 Enduro Full Face Helmet

Vital Review

“Best of Both Worlds? We Ride the New Leatt DBX 3.0 Convertible Helmet”

C138_helmet_dbx_3.0_enduro_v1_blue_lime_1_2
With the rise of enduro, and more specifically the actual racing discipline, the good old helmet has found itself the subject of much attention recently. Combining near World Cup-level tech and speed on the downs with long, grueling climbs means that your helmet now has to offer full-face levels of protection yet still remain breathable enough to cope with long, hot climbs. One solution that has seen a bit of a renaissance lately is the convertible helmet, where the chin bar can be removed for better ventilation on the way up the mountain. Leatt joined that party at the end of 2016 with the launch of their DBX Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member iceman2058
94 iceman2058 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/94/avatar/c50_johan_1385064431.jpg?1385063576 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/iceman2058,94/all 08/01/09 751 94 1111 1686 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/iceman2058,94/setup 62 390 4315 119 29

Race Face Next R 35 Handlebar

Featured Member Review

“Race Face Next R 35 Handlebar”

C138_race_face_next_r_35_handlebar

The Good:

Awesome graphics, natural feel, stiff and supportive yet dampen small bumps well, just a really good bar.

The Bad:

For a "enduro" option, they weight just as much as the "DH" SixC.

Overall Review: Earlier this year, Race Face came out with a new component lineup to meet the demands of one of the fastest growing disciplines in the industry, Enduro. The called it Next R and it fits, snuggly in between the XC Next and DH SixC product lines. I get my hands on a new Next R 35mm rise bar and with just a short few weeks on it, here are my impressions: Out of The Box: Pulling the Race Face Next R carbon bars out if their packaging, the first thing I ask myself was if I accidentally ordered a SixC bar. I then realized the decals were different but besides that, the profile, feel, and weight were nearly identical. Made to Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member dirtworks911
14755 dirtworks911 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/14755/avatar/c50_14881538_1588539877838281_1800798274_o_1477766735.jpg?1477766635 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/all 04/09/12 6 2 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/setup 1 2 38 97

Ibis 3D Forged Stem

Featured Member Review

“Ibis 3D Forged Stem”

C138_ibis_3d_forged_stem_02

The Good:

Good looks, good shape, decent weight, oversized 5mm steerer bolts, great value

The Bad:

narrow bar clamping surface allows for a bit of flex on aggressive trails.

Overall Review: I just picked up a new Ibis HD4 and wanted shed some light on stock Ibis 3D stem that came on it. With a few rides on it’ here are my impressions: Out of The Box: This stem appeared to be an average stock stem that comes on pretty much every middle grade bike. This was, until you look at some of the finer details of it. The first thing I noticed was that, however “stock” this stem is, Ibis put some effort into giving the 3D some flavor. That flaver is a simple “Ibis” band around the center of the stem. The best part is that it’s not overpowering like other stock stems which means you can potentially put it on a different bike Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member dirtworks911
14755 dirtworks911 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/14755/avatar/c50_14881538_1588539877838281_1800798274_o_1477766735.jpg?1477766635 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/all 04/09/12 6 2 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/setup 1 2 38 97

Maxxis Ardent Tire

“Utterly mediocre. Not up to Maxxis standards.”

C138_ardent

The Good:

Was stock on new bike, so I didn't pay retail. Performance on first half dozen rides was tolerable.

The Bad:

Almost any other tire on the market climbs, rolls & corners better than the 2.25" Ardent. Even if you get them free, you'll still have to swap them out every dozen rides since the side knobs decay so quickly.

Overall Review: Riding in my part of Northern California takes place 90% of the time on "cheesgrater": hard-baked clay imbedded w/ decomposed granite. This surface is merciless & quickly reveals which tires can go the distance. Even in Maxxis' harder-wearing Dual Compound rubber, the 2.25" version of the Ardent is NOT that tire. The Ardent's small knobs shred quickly: the staggered side knobs are the worst culprits, shredding visibly from first ride on due to poorly-placed sipes just a few mm from edge of knobs. Across the board, Ardents roll slower, corner worse on hardpack & loose soil, and offer less climbing traction than competing Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member BergMann
45298 BergMann /images/default/avatar/c50.png http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/BergMann,45298/all 09/21/17 1 1