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Park Tool Professional Cable And Housing Cutter

Featured Review

“ Better than dikes”

C138_parktool_cn_10_08_m

The Good:

Cuts crips and clean most of the time, Comfy handle, Jaws open super wide (6.90mm), Crimping feature for end caps/ferrules

The Bad:

Not the most secure locking feature, Came loose on me and never cut the same since

Overall Review: In regards to tools for us self-titled “home mechanics,” housing and cable cutters may not be the mostly used tool, but they certainly need to function the best. Spending $10 on cheap cutters can get the job done but often times with frayed cable ends. Dropping $50+ on hyper nice cutters may be a little overkill for the average cyclist who is too cheap or independent to have the work done at their LBS. In search for the best valued cutters, I purchased the Park Tool CN-10 cutters. After 5 years of use, here are my impressions: Out of the Box: The Park Tool CN-10 cutters look and function Read More »
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Vital MTB member dirtworks911
14755 dirtworks911 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/14755/avatar/c50_10514455_771835879581_189563491686125955_o_1450673946.jpg?1450673027 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/all 04/09/12 4 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/setup 1 23 47

Gamut Podium Flat Pedal

Vital Review

“Tested: Gamut Podium Flat Pedals”

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by Fred Robinson Considering we pretty much have three contact points connecting us to our bikes, we’d argue that the pedals might be the most critical in terms of fit, function and feel. That said, over the past seven-or-so years we’ve seen a pretty big change in what’s available as far as pedal shape, weight and profile. We don’t recall exactly when it happened, but it seemed like, all of a sudden, there was a huge race between pedal manufacturers to make the thinnest pedal possible. Some of the resulting pedals were, excuse the pun, flat-out terrifying. One pedal that came along during that period was the Point One Read More »
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Vital MTB member FredLikesTrikes
18548 FredLikesTrikes http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/18548/avatar/c50_IMG_0045_1428943983.jpg?1428943532 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/FredLikesTrikes,18548/all 09/14/12 133 3 255 167 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/FredLikesTrikes,18548/setup 29 202 56 40

RockShox Reverb Stealth B1 Dropper Post

Featured Review

“ Redemption of the Reverb”

C138_2017_rockshox_reverb_stealth_b1

The Good:

Effortless initiation. Smooth motion. Durable!!!

The Bad:

At $471, the price could turn some people away.

Overall Review: I’ve owned a number of RockShox Reverb Stealth (A2) dropper posts and it seemed that the durability declined with each one I got. This got so bad that I contacted my LBS and filed a warranty replacement (on a post that was less than 2 months old!) Sram sent out a replacement Reverb Stealth and to my surprise, it was the new B1 version. For those new to dropper posts, the RockShox Reverb Stealth was known to be one of the best performing and smoothest dropper posts out there. Many people began to experience issues with the Reverb’s durability and performance. The most common issue was a defect on the Read More »
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Vital MTB member dirtworks911
14755 dirtworks911 http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/14755/avatar/c50_10514455_771835879581_189563491686125955_o_1450673946.jpg?1450673027 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/all 04/09/12 4 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/dirtworks911,14755/setup 1 23 47

Race Face Atlas Cinch Cranks

Vital Review

“Tested: Race Face Altas Cinch Cranks”

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Bred from a long tradition of quality and durable products in the component arena, the Race Face Atlas cranks have been a mainstay in the Canadian company's product line for years. Originally designed with an all-mountain and a freeride model, Race Face had refined the design over the years creating a single Atlas crank described as being a “do-it-all” crankset that could handle anything from aggressive trail riding to downhill laps. Known for its durability, strength, and an affordable price tag while giving riders the ability to add some flair with their trademark color options, could Race Face update the Atlas crank enough Read More »
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Vital MTB member Lucent
16 Lucent http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/16/avatar/c50_IMG_0810_1401977666.jpg?1401976735 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/Lucent,16/all 07/28/09 8 23 49 68 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/Lucent,16/setup 2 23 8 229 24 1

Race Face Chester Flat Pedal

Vital Review

“Tested: Race Face Chester Flat Pedals”

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by Justin Schroth Thanks to a market flooded with pedal options, it has become increasingly more difficult for brands to distinguish themselves and standout a sea of anodizing. Race Face looks to break free from their traditional mold (pun intended) of aluminum platforms with the new Chester pedal. The Chester is a composite pedal that looks to offer durability and function at a more reasonable price tag than their metal counterparts. Race Face Chester Features Weight: 356 grams (per pair) 110 mm long x 101 mm wide x 15-18.44mm thick Nylon composite body Chromoly steel axle Sealed bearing // bushing system Cartridge Read More »
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Vital MTB member Lucent
16 Lucent http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/16/avatar/c50_IMG_0810_1401977666.jpg?1401976735 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/Lucent,16/all 07/28/09 8 23 49 68 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/Lucent,16/setup 2 23 8 229 24 1

Specialized SWAT Pro Bib Shorts

Vital Review

“Tested: Specialized SWAT Pro Bib Shorts”

C138_specialized_swat_pro_bibs
Review by AJ Barlas Back in 2014, Specialized released a product that caused a little bit of a stir in the mountain bike world. The release of the first SWAT bib seemed to unintentionally pit those that don’t have an issue with wearing a pack up against those that dislike packs. Those that choose not to wear a pack were generally excited to have a way of stowing some spares and food, while pack lovers just didn’t see the point. Now, two years later, Specialized and a number of other brands have released more apparel capable of holding the essentials. It seems that there is a demand for this among riders, but how do Read More »
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Vital MTB member ardor
19406 ardor http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/19406/avatar/c50_ardor_avatar_1435645277.jpg?1435644564 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/ardor,19406/all 10/30/12 5 3 312 4 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/ardor,19406/setup 2 24 1 92 31 4

Five Ten Maltese Falcon LT Clipless Shoe

Featured Review

“Five Ten Maltese Falcon Race Clipless Shoes review”

C138_5151_maltesefalconltclipless_greyred_web_07

The Good:

Stiff/ grippy soles, good protection, lightweight, comfortable for longer rides. Great shoe for the more aggressive trail rider looking for the benefits of clipless and the benefits of a flat pedal DH shoe.

The Bad:

Not as stiff as an XC shoe (good thing and bad thing), cleats are lower than rubber sole which makes them loud to walk in and slippery if you are not on your toes or heels. Broke cloth eyelet after a month of riding with them.

Overall Review: Mountain bikers have a huge range of shoes to choose from these days depending on style, location, application etc. and it is easy to get caught up in the gimmicks and marketing ploys. I started riding clipless a few years ago and haven’t looked back since, but finding a shoe that ticks all of the boxes has been tough. Enter the Five Ten Maltese Falcon Lt: a shoe that has the protection and grip of a flat pedal shoe but with the sole stiffness and cleat compatibility of a more XC-minded option. When I first looked at the shoes, I was definitely unsure about the looks. It has some of the skate shoe styling Read More »
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Vital MTB member lagocza
32917 lagocza http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/32917/avatar/c50_me_palmer_2_1451276234.jpg?1451275237 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/lagocza,32917/all 10/07/14 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/lagocza,32917/setup 2 3 13

Shimano SLX M530 Clipless Pedals

“Good Pedal!”

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The Good:

Good value, robust, wide platform

The Bad:

None so far

Overall Review: It is a good pedal with a good value for money. I got this pair of M530 with $28, compared to the upper XT and XTR level pedal. Spring tension is easy to adjust . For the first time, I used the weakest spring tension with SM-SH51 single release cleat (cleats included with the pedal). Then, for more comfort, I added the spring tension several turn. And it makes me more comfortable and confidence on the bike. For trail use, I prefer SM-SH51cleat and for commuting (bike to work), I prefer SM-SH56 multi-release cleat. I recommend this pedal!! Five stars.

Maxxis Minion DHRII Wide Trail Tire

Vital Review

“Tested: Maxxis Minion DHRII Wide Trail”

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by Joel Harwood Tire choice is a tough one. Every brand has a variety of tread patterns, casings, rubber compounds, and a never-ending list of acronyms. Maxxis led the industry with the Minion DHF and High Roller for eons, and other tire manufacturers were playing catch up. As more riders and bike manufacturers have transitioned to wider rims, Maxxis has updated some of their classic treads with a wider casing optimized for wide rims. Maxxis’ Wide Trail (WT) casing is optimized for rims with an internal width of 35mm, but also seems better suited to modern trail bikes than the relatively narrow 2.3” casing. It’s Read More »
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Vital MTB member hurricanejoel
27998 hurricanejoel http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/27998/avatar/c50_IMG_0156_1462806162.jpg?1462805225 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/hurricanejoel,27998/all 10/17/13 1 38 4 16 17

2014 Santa Cruz Bronson Carbon SPX AM 27.5 Bike

“Awesome Ride”

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The Good:

27.5 Kashima fork and shock Fox 34 kicks butt.

The Bad:

Heavy tires

Overall Review: I bought this bike in 2014 and it's the best bike I've ever owned. Gt, trek, specialized, this beats them all. Fast smooth and agility are tops when the suspension is set up correctly. I am going to get some lighter tires though for local riding that's not that tech. I did do a DH race on it too and it blew through all that I hit with ease.