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2017 Pivot Firebird Carbon Pro XT/XTR

Vital Review

“Review - 2017 Pivot Firebird Carbon from Vital MTB Test Sessions”

C138_2017_pivot_firebird_carbon_blue_red_with_pro_xt_xtr_1x
With a complete overhaul for 2017, the Pivot Firebird gets some key geometry updates inspired by its downhill counter part, the Phoenix, complete with a brand new dw-link suspension layout. Featuring 170mm of front and rear wheel travel, the Firebird comes prepared to handle the gnarliest trails. We were stoked to get this bad boy out on some of Tucson, Arizona’s rocky, loose trails during Vital MTB Test Sessions to find out if these changes result in big gains. Highlights Carbon frame 27.5-inch wheels 170mm (6.7-inches) of rear wheel travel // 170mm (6.7-inches) fork travel dw-link suspension design Internal Read More »
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Vital MTB member bturman
109 bturman http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/109/avatar/c50_profile_1487817150.jpg?1487816891 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/bturman,109/all 08/01/09 1137 94 6156 1023 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/bturman,109/setup 275 1223 2223 147 41

Atomlab Pimplite Stem

“Good, until it stripped”

C138_29854

The Good:

Nice reach, perfect for 25.4mm bars (duh) perfect positioning overall.

The Bad:

One of the face-plate bolts stripped out, due to user error. My fault that it happened.

Overall Review: Would recommend, just be careful when tightening down.
Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member DanTheBikerMan
41873 DanTheBikerMan http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/41873/avatar/c50_IMG_0483_1489355832.jpg?1489355271 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/DanTheBikerMan,41873/all 08/01/16 1 3 2 1

2016 YT Jeffsy CF Comp 1 29

Vital Review

“Review - YT Jeffsy CF 29 from Vital MTB Test Sessions”

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YThas made quite the leap into the suspension bike arena in the last few years. They've had notable freeriders and slopestyle riders before, but now with UCI World Cup Downhill Champion Aaron Gwin and some enduro racers on their side they have really moved into the big leagues with the bikes they have to offer. The Jeffsy 29 is one of their newest offerings, sporting 29-inch wheels and an ultra progressive suspension system they have come to be known for. As their first trail bike, it's designed to be an "everyday" ride. We put it to the test during the 2017 Vital MTB Test Sessions. Highlights Carbon frame 29-inch wheels Read More »
Rate review: +2 Up Down
Vital MTB member bturman
109 bturman http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/109/avatar/c50_profile_1487817150.jpg?1487816891 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/bturman,109/all 08/01/09 1137 94 6156 1023 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/bturman,109/setup 275 1223 2223 147 41

Stan's NoTubes ZTR Flow Rim

“Awesome rims”

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The Good:

These rims were incredibly easy to set up with my maxxis exo tyres.
good price too.
very lightweight

The Bad:

annoying that they came with the stick on the inside of the rim. i had to buy label remover to be able to get it off.

Overall Review: i noticed the improvement between these and my giant rims straight away when i got out to the trail head. i found that i could corner much more aggressively and ride faster.

2016 100% Racecraft Goggles

“Amazing goggles for the price”

C138_50110_167_02_noseguard

The Good:

Great FOV
Spare lense is a bonus
Tear offs and goggle bag were a great surprise
rarely fog up

The Bad:

The adjustment on the strap tends to work its way loose over time. i hardly noticed this out on the trail though.

Overall Review: I have used a fair few goggles since i started riding yet these stood out the most for me for the following reasons. - they work well with both full and half face helmets - well ventilated and nice and comfy - rarely fog - great range of colours - awesome price

2016 Giant Reign 27.5 2 Bike

“A lot of bike for the money”

C138_reign_275_2_yellow_blue

The Good:

Get fairly decent spec for a low price
nice geometry - bombs the descents and climbs pretty well
wide handlebars as standard is a bonus

The Bad:

No lockout on the rear shock is a bit annoying

Overall Review: After buying this as an upgrade to my norco fluid dualy, i noticed the difference straight away. I was incredibly suprised to see that it climbed better than the fluid as it was heavier with more aggressive travel/geometry. No matter what i have thrown at the bike it has eaten it all up. I would definitely recommend this bike.

Kali Protectives Savara Full Face Helmet

“Decent beginner full fave”

C138_he256g00_black

The Good:

Light
Well ventilated
Works well with most goggles
Nice sturdy visor
Could fit a GoPro hero session underneath visor
Plenty of spots to mount an action camera

The Bad:

Felt a little flimsy
Metal seatbelt type buckle rusted easy
Clear coat paint started to peal off after about 6 months

Overall Review: Having used both a TLD d3 and a Savara, I can easily say the d3 is worth the extra $. However, this helmet is nice and light and still offers much more protection that a half shell for the money.

2017 Yeti Beti SB5 Carbon XT/SLX

Vital Review

“Review - 2017 Yeti Beti SB5 Carbon from Vital MTB Test Sessions”

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One of Yeti’s most popular bikes, the SB5, has a twin sister in the Beti lineup. For 2017 the bike received a number of sweet updates atop women’s specific contact points, a lighter shock tune, and a gorgeous paint job. Built for “hard charging women who want the ideal trail bike,” we dropped in on Tucson’s Mount Lemmon during Vital MTB Test Sessions to find out if the second generation Beti can back up the bold statement. Highlights Full carbon frame 27.5-inch wheels 127mm (5.0-inches) of rear wheel travel // 150mm (5.9-inches) fork travel Switch Infinity suspension design Tapered Inset headtube Internal cable Read More »
Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member bturman
109 bturman http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/109/avatar/c50_profile_1487817150.jpg?1487816891 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/bturman,109/all 08/01/09 1137 94 6156 1023 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/bturman,109/setup 275 1223 2223 147 41

Knolly Endorphin Frame

“Knolly - Making Kick Ass Aluminum bikes - Endorphin 27.6 2017 Review ”

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The Good:

for me, the debate of carbon vs aluminum seems to be outdated. The cost is not worth 1-2 lbs of savings for me these days and the Knolly Endorphin reminds of of why i started riding bikes in the first place. This is coming from someone who owns carbon and AL full suspension bikes. This bike absolutely rips. It is so nimble and playful and that is with a pike 150 up front. I am a bigger build at 5'10" 190 lbs and I ride a medium, This thing wants to pop, flick and jump off every little feature it can. the rear linkage made me a little hesitant at first, but man... traction traction traction! rather your climbing a tech section full of rocks and roots, or ripping through some groomed berms, this bike holds it down. the 130 rear really holds it own, and I have yet to feel under-gunned on any of my my rides. I was incredible impressed how stable it felt, especially on the faster stuff. This bike is just plain fun and reminds me of why i started riding in the first place.

The Bad:

I have only owned this bike for a few months now and I really don't have anything bad to say at this point. When riding some more techy terrain, keeping up with my buddy's on their 160/150 bikes was a little tough as they could blow through the gnar sections while I was a little more thoughtful of my lines. To combat that, on the flatter sections of the trails, I was able to enjoy myself a little more popping off roots and rocks... I think the rear linkage makes me questionable for the long term, and will be interested to see how long the pivots and hardware hold up.

Overall Review: As I have read elsewhere, it is downhillers trail bike. I am no downhill rider, but spend 90% of my time on trails on the east coast.. but man is this bike fun. Going back to what I said earlier, this bike reminds me of why I started riding in the first place. Not getting caught up on components, weight, what materials my frame and wheels were made of... but simply just got me excited to go ride my bike. If you want to have fun, and you are an aggressive trail rider, don't look past the Knolly Endorphin 27.5
Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member 615regular
43662 615regular http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/43662/avatar/c50_IMG_6863_1485986851.jpg?1485985915 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/615regular,43662/all 02/01/17 10 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/615regular,43662/setup 2 4

POC Joint VPD Air Knee Pad

“Overall - Good Set of Pads ”

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The Good:

POC is known for their protection gear. They cover the basis across two major outdoor recreation sports, biking and skiing, and with the focus on two sports and not 7, i think it allows them the time, money and research to provide quality products. That being said, this is a great pair of kneed pads, especially for the downhill enthusiasts. Even though, this is the VPD Air knee pad, considered to be their lighter duty knee pad, they still provide an abundance of protection, which is good and why we wear these things. They breathe relatively well, but of comfort and breathability are your main concerns, I personally would look elsewhere.

The Bad:

A few things that bothered me about these knee pads. 1) this is suppose to be POC's "light duty" knee pad. Well they are, but they aren't when you are comparing them to other like knee pads, say the Dakin Slayers, or Fox Launch. The POC really do provide great stiff, protectio, but they aren't that forgiving when it comes to pedaling, especially when you are climbing just as much as you are descending. 2) Don't breathe very well 3) only one strap, on top that grabs the thigh. I personally would prefer a strap that grabs the calf, or just right above it so when you are descending, through technical terrain, you don't have to worry about the pads sliding down your legs. most people legs get slimmer from top to bottom and the top strap is pointless once it loses its grip and begins to slid down your leg. 4) not recommended for long days in the saddle.

Overall Review: Now it may seem that my Bad may outweigh the good in this review, but don't get my wrong, I think this is a great pair of knee pads and POC is known as a industry leader in the protection market. But, when this is their light duty knee pad, and you are comparing to what I would consider, other true light duty knee pads, these are not at the top of my list. these get 4 out of 5 for me, as they are still on my shelf, and I will wear them on the days when I know descending > ascending but there is still some pedaling involved. ..but if you're looking to crank out 20-30 miles in the saddle, I would look elsewhere. Thanks for reading and feel free to ask any questions or address any of my statements above!
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Vital MTB member 615regular
43662 615regular http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/43662/avatar/c50_IMG_6863_1485986851.jpg?1485985915 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/615regular,43662/all 02/01/17 10 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/615regular,43662/setup 2 4