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T.H.E. Maxi Guards

Vital Review

“Tested: T.H.E. Maxi Guards”

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It's tough to find one thing that's good for everything - this holds true for bikes and knee pads. When it comes to bikes, a nice slack 5 or 6-inch travel trail bike is the choice of most savvy folks who can only have one bike in their garage. It may not be the best downhill machine, but it'll do, and it's not the best climber, but it sure is fun on the way back down. When it comes to knee pads, the same concept applies - protection, comfort, durability, breathability, and more variables are all at play. At first glance, the new T.H.E. Maxi Guards, first introduced at Sea Otter 2012, look to be equivalent to that Read More »

Leatt DBX Pro Neck Brace

Vital Review

“Leatt DBX Pro Long Term Test”

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Last fall, I reviewed the Leatt DBX Pro. Now that I have been using the brace for the nearly a full year, my opinions haven't really changed much. It's still the best thing going at the moment. Despite a few spills and normal wear and tear over the last year, the brace still looks practically brand new. The padding is easy to remove and clean (not having Velcro to deal with really makes everything easier to clean), so the white portions have retained most of their brightness. The spring loaded hinges are still working like they did right out of the box. In addition, the crashes didn't seem to impact the structural Read More »

Shimano SLX M666 Disc Brake

“Solid Brakes”

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The Good: Well priced, great stopping power, low maintenance, easy to install, tool free reach adjustment, comes with those finned pads

The Bad: I can't think of any

Overall Review: These brakes are awesome. You really can't beat them for the price. I haven't had to do any maintenance on these since I got them. Shimano brakes in my opinion are also the easiest to bleed. They have tons of stopping power. I run these on my freeride bike and have used them at multiple bike parks and tons of downhill runs. I've never had to use more than one finger on these brakes. The reach adjustment also works great. My brother has ridden his avid codes the same amount as me or less and they are in need of a bleed and mine are not. The bottom line is if you want dependable, strong brakes and you're on a budget get these brakes!

Giant STP Frame

“:) i love it!!”

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The Good: the frame has is stronger all around, i love the geometryt of this frame. headtube angle is just right for me.

The Bad: nothing is wrong its a giant

Overall Review: great frame the price is great for the frame and good geometry

SixSixOne Recon Gloves

Vital Review

“Tested: SixSixOne Recon Gloves”

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The Good: Breathability // Comfort // Thin palm

The Bad: Short wrist closure // Lack of protection

Overall Review: Product Highlights Dimple mesh upper for precise fit Micro fiber sweat wipe Silicon printed finger tips $29.95 MSRP Riding Impressions Breathability and comfort - this all-mountain glove was designed with these two things in mind. Featuring full-mesh-backed fingers and backhand, these gloves stay cool while riding. The thin but durable palm leather offers good grip, precise lever feel, and doesn't bunch. Both the index and middle fingers feature silicon gripper coating for increased control and grip on levers. While not offering much tree-punching protection, the Recon Gloves offer much more than a bare hand in the grip Read More »

Crank Brothers Kronolog Adjustable Seatpost

Vital Review

“Tested: Crank Brothers Kronolog Adjustable Seatpost”

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by Brandon Turman This past March, Crank Brothers introduced the Kronolog, an all-new adjustable seatpost based around a simple mechanical design concept - that of a bar clamp. The post boasts 125mm of infinite adjustment, comes in 30.9 or 31.6mm diameters, and weighs an impressively light 493 grams with the remote. If you're unfamiliar with the inner workings of the post, take a moment to revisit this "First Look" feature that we prepared when the post was first launched: As you can tell by watching that slideshow, when we first got our hands on it we were pretty impressed. Everything from the fixed cable Read More »

RockShox Boxxer R2C2 Fork

“The Official "Budget" DH Fork”

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The Good: 1)Smooth with fresh grease/oil
2)Adjustable- High/low speed compression and beginning/ending stroke rebound
3)Relatively Cheap
4)Easy to rebuild
5)Relatively light

The Bad: 1)Needs to be rebuilt all of the time for best performance
2) It's flexy
3)Doesn't come with the correct amount of oil

Overall Review: The Good: 1)With fresh oil in the lowers, a rebuilt damper, and a ton of slick honey on the seals the fork feels really good. The problem is that the feel doesn't last. I went threw countless sets of seals/dust wipers on this fork. 2)The fork is quite adjustable for the price. You get three springs which can easily be swapped out if you do not fit the stock spring rate, and a multitude of adjustments(Bottom out, high and low speed compression, and beginning/end of stroke rebound) 3)The $850 price point puts this fork in a price range that your typical downhill rider might actually be able to afford. 4)The fork Read More »

Shimano Saint Hydraulic Disc Brake

“The Only Brake I Will Ever Buy”

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The Good: 1)Reliability
2)Power/Modulation
3)Easy to Bleed
4)Lack of brake fade

The Bad: 1)The metallic replacement brake pads tend to squeal like a pig.

Overall Review: Good: 1)I've been using the same set of Saint brakes since June of 2009 and only a month ago did I have to bleed the brakes. I probably ride roughly 30-35 bike park days per year and shuttle at least once per week. I've never experienced another brake that I've never had an issue with. Just replace the pads as you ware them down and you are good to go. If you do run into issues, I've found there is usually a Shimano tech at most West Coast races and they will not hesitate to get you sorted out. SRAM may lead in the warranty replacement department, but that doesn't help you if they aren't at the race. 2)The Saint Read More »

SixSixOne Evo Carbon Camber Full Face Helmet

“661 evo carbon helmet”

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The Good: 1. it's fairly lighter compared to other carbon helmet
2. Sun visor is flexible so it won't break easily
3. air ventilation is great
4. click on lock

The Bad: bad graphic, less graphic choice
and, 661 should redesign it to better suit Leatt and other neck brace

Overall Review: It's a great value vs price for a carbon helmet

SixSixOne Evo Carbon Camber Full Face Helmet

Vital Review

“Tested: SixSixOne Evo Carbon Camber Helmet”

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The Good: Lightweight // No goggle interference issues // Meets or exceeds several safety standards // Reasonably priced

The Bad: Shape limits helmet cam mounting options

Overall Review: Product Highlights 3k Carbon Fiber Construction Removable, washable liner Inner channeling links intake ports to aid ventilation Weighs 2.1 pounds $299.95 MSRP Riding Impressions For 2012, SixSixOne introduced an all-new lightweight downhill specific helmet. With a great, comfortable fit, light weight and good styling, the Evo Carbon is a continuation of SixSixOne's progressive helmet design. Large vents located under the visor and at the back of the helmet encourage airflow and keep your head cool during riding. Goggle fit and peripheral vision wasn't an issue with the well designed eye opening. Read More »