Latest Product Reviews


2014 Yeti SB75 Race

Vital Review

“2014 Test Sessions: Yeti SB75”

Reviewed by Steve Wentz, Evan Turpen and Brandon Turman // Photos by Shawn Spomer and Lear Miller For 2014, Yeti Cycles combined their proven Switch Technology suspension platform and some newfangled 27.5-inch wheels to create the SB75. After having a great experience on the SB66 Carbon and watching Jared Graves lay the hammer down on his SB66 time and time again during the Enduro World Series, it goes without saying that we had high hopes for the SB75. Is the new bike a better version of the original Super Bike, or is it an entirely different ride? Sedona, Arizona served as the perfect testing grounds to see what the new rig has Read More »
Rate review: +4 Up Down
Vital MTB member bturman
109 bturman,109/all 08/01/09 1150 94 6120 1028,109/setup 275 1214 2183 138 41

Fox Racing Women's Flygirl Jersey

Vital Review

“Tested: Fox Flygirl Short Sleeved Women’s Jersey”

by Amanda Richter It was almost spring and I was going a little stir crazy in snowy Colorado. I needed something to hold me over, something to look forward to so I thought “huh, I guess I could get some new kit...” Honestly, I was dreading it - I am not much of a shopper and with women’s cycling clothing there hasn't always been much to motivate me. It was actually my boyfriend who finally sat me down on Fox’s website and made me take a look. That was when I saw the Flygirl for the first time. Could it be? Was it actually possible that this jersey could combine fit and function as Fox claims, all for Read More »
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Vital MTB member La Pata
28909 La Pata,28909/all 12/20/13 2 1 6

SR Suntour RUX RC2 Fork

Vital Review

“Tested: SR Suntour RUX Fork - UPDATED INTERNALS”

Review by Evan Turpen // Photos by Dave Trumpore It's no secret that the long-travel bike market is a tough one to crack into. The numbers of product produced is much smaller than other areas of the market and the performance and quality demanded is of the highest level, because it has to be. As a result of the highly competitive market, many companies and products have come and gone, and some companies won't even dabble in it for fear of never getting a return on their investment. SR Suntour isn’t one of these scared companies, and for 2014 they’ve made the leap into the long-travel downhill and freeride market with the release Read More »
Rate review: +5 Up Down
Vital MTB member E.T.
699 E.T.,699/all 08/31/09 4 8 1 5 47 13

2014 Devinci Troy Carbon SL

Vital Review

“2014 Test Sessions: Devinci Troy Carbon SL”

Reviewed by John Hauer and Jess Pedersen // Photos by Lear Miller The all-new Troy is Devinci’s first stab at the 27.5-inch wheel market. Sporting 140mm of travel and Dave Weagle’s Split Pivot suspension technology, the Troy took the world by storm last season as Stevie Smith rallied the never before seen bike to the top of the podium at the highly contested Crankworx Whistler Air Downhill race. Instantly the internets filled with the news, and demand was born for a bike that had just made the very best debut possible. Curious to see how this bad boy performs under someone other than the reigning World Cup Downhill Read More »
Rate review: +4 Up Down
Vital MTB member bturman
109 bturman,109/all 08/01/09 1150 94 6120 1028,109/setup 275 1214 2183 138 41

Michelin Wild Rock'R2 Advanced Reinforced Tire

Vital Review

“Tested: Michelin Wild Rock'R2 Tire”

by Dave Trumpore Michelin has been quiet for the last few years on the DH and Enduro front, and the Wild Rock'R2 marks their return to the serious gravity and trail bike market. Aimed at today's modern trail bikes, and more specifically Enduro racing this tire is aggressive and especially rugged. Michelin makes three versions of this tire and we tested the top of the line model that retails for $100. Wild Rock'R2 Tire Highlights 2.35" x 26" (Tested), 27.5" (650b), and 29” Tubeless Ready Folding Aramid Bead 50A Magi’X Softer Compound Front // 64A Center, 59A Lateral Gum’X Harder Dual Compound Rear Read More »
Rate review: +3 Up Down
Vital MTB member davetrumpore
1982 davetrumpore,1982/all 02/16/10 5 7 710 1 1 9 2 92 7

2014 Giant XTC Advanced 27.5 3 Bike

“2014 Giant XTC 27.5 Advanced 3”


The Good:

Handling, function of components for price (value), compliance (for a hard tail). I really had a lot of fun on this bike and bested previous efforts put in on MUCH more expensive and lighter XC bikes.

The Bad:

Nothing bad. The components are not the flashiest or lightest, but all worked great. The stem and bars were a little longer and narrower than I am used to, but maybe just right for this type of bike and intended purpose. The Reba was very firm, which was good in terms of going where I pointed it, but was a little harsh...probably just not enough time on it to get it dialed.

Overall Review: I have been riding bikes all my life and competing in mostly XC and enduro successfull...y the last few years in Cat 1. I have owned or ridden many of the late model XC and enduro offerings, including the Trek Remedy 29er, Giant Trance SX 27.5, Santa Cruz Highball, SC Tallboy, Tallboy2 and Tallboy LT, and SC Bronson. My experience so far with the variety of wheels sizes we now have led me to the idea that 27.5 is more agile, fun, flickable and capable down, but that 29 is faster rolling and better uphill…i.e. that 29 is better for XC. In fairness, riding a 29lb 150/160mm Bronson back to back with a 26lb 100/120mm Read More »
Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member argibson
29334 argibson /images/default/avatar/c50.png,29334/all 01/21/14,29334/setup 1 6 1

Axiom Annihilateair G200LE Floor Pump

Vital Review

“Tested: Axiom Annihilateair G200LE Floor Pump”

by Colt Maule Axiom is committed to helping cyclists ride more and live better, and they have been at it for 25 years. Their products are designed and tested by avid cyclists, so every minute detail is painstakingly considered before a final design is approved. Axiom relentlessly pursue new ways to reduce their footprint, using environmentally sensitive processes and materials in all of their products and packaging. With that background, I was curious to see what they can bring to us riders, so I put their Annihilateair G200LE floor pump to the test. Annihilateair G200LE Pump Highlights 13 x 9-inch powder Read More »
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Vital MTB member projekt roam
3232 projekt roam,3232/all 06/28/10 3 8 236 21,3232/setup 1 5 5

2014 Intense Carbine 29

Vital Review

“2014 Test Sessions: Intense Carbine 29”

Reviewed by Evan Turpen and Brandon Turman // Photos by Shawn Spomer and Lear Miller Introduced in late 2013, the Carbine 29 is the first long-travel enduro 29er from Intense Cycles. It has a full carbon front triangle and carbon swingarm linked together by two counter-rotating CNC’d aluminum VPP links with options for either 127 or 140mm of rear travel. Complete with the well-regarded 160mm RockShox Pike fork, this rig is designed to tackle anything you can throw at it. With that in mind, we pedaled up and pointed it down some of the rowdiest descents Sedona, Arizona has to offer during the 2014 Vital MTB Test Sessions. Read More »
Rate review: +5 Up Down
Vital MTB member bturman
109 bturman,109/all 08/01/09 1150 94 6120 1028,109/setup 275 1214 2183 138 41

Shimano M162 SPD Shoes

“Good shoes but durability issues”


The Good:

Good medium width, good heel hold due to cam buckle, reasonably stiff sole, good walking grip

The Bad:

The neoprene on both top strap began tearing after about a month of use, resulting in a less precise fit

Overall Review: I really like these shoes. They can be had for under $100 online and are a good shoe for trail riding, striking a balance between an XC-style fit and friendly walking performance. The sole is stiff enough but has some give when walking around. Unfortunately the neoprene on both top straps tore after about a month. The shoes are still usable but I need to crank the top strap quite a bit to get the fit I'd like, while the strap used to be more elastic right up against the ankle, making for a precise fit without the same tension. Other than the top strap durability issue, these are great shoes, especially given the price. Unfortunately I would not buy another pair and will looking for something with similar performance but better longevity.
Rate review: +2 Up Down
Vital MTB member D(C)
24430 D(C) /images/default/avatar/c50.png,24430/all 05/15/13 2 13 2

MarshGuard Stash Fork Fender

Vital Review

“Tested: MarshGuard Fender and Stash Add-On”

Review by Joel Harwood // Photos by AJ Barlas Ah winter... The sun seems to set before I leave work and the trails have reached maximum saturation, with consistent rain to boot. Regardless, I have been night riding fairly consistently and making the most of winter here in the Northwest. But nothing ruins a wet weather ride like a face full of mud, or the realization that all the slop surrounding your fork bushings will require diligent removal. The tube and zip-tie fender is a nearly free and simple solution to unwanted muck on one's face, but it doesn't reduce the slop around fork stanchions nor does it last for more Read More »
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Vital MTB member hurricanejoel
27998 hurricanejoel,27998/all 10/17/13 1 38 4 23 17