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Guerrilla Gravity Gravity 1 Wheelset

Vital Review

“Tested: Gravity 1 Wheelset by Guerrilla Gravity”

C138_guerrilla_gravity_gravity_1_wheelset
Review by Fred Robinson // Photos by Ian Collins Guerrilla Gravity is taking a unique approach with their custom handbuilt wheelset program. Unhappy with the direction the bicycle industry pushes riders in with regards to price vs. performance, Guerrilla Gravity created a custom wheelset program that seeks both value and performance in an effort to, in their own words, “make things less cost-prohibitive for the people, but still make things they're stoked on.” In order to provide a product that satisfies both their price and performance standards, Guerrilla Gravity uses select off-the-shelf products that should, Read More »
Rate review: +1 Up Down
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 7 786 68 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/FredLikesTrikes,18548/setup 33 238 71 57 1

Troy Lee Designs A1 Helmet

“Most Enduro”

C138_2016_drone_white

The Good:

Looks and Fits better than any helmet around. Lots of protection, works with glasses and goggles on most heads..

The Bad:

price, still not quite as many colorways as we'd like to see,

Overall Review: The A1 is by far and away the best fitting helmet we've tried - we know what you're thinking; fit is subjective, and you're right, but this one seems to fit almost everyone who tries it on. The guys at Troy Lee did a great job tailoring the A1 to it's target audience - it's about as enduro as you can reasonably look. By that we mean that it works well with goggles and has plenty of protection (more occipital protection than just about any other half-shell) all that and it vents surprisingly well.
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Vital MTB member HutchsBikes
30885 HutchsBikes http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/30885/avatar/c50_Hutchs_logo_sprocket_black_1399338739.jpg?1399337913 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/HutchsBikes,30885/all 05/05/14 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/HutchsBikes,30885/setup 2 3

2013 Specialized S-Works Enduro Carbon 29 SE

“Top dollar, Top dog”

C138_2013_specialized_s_works_enduro_29_se_fsr_rear_end

The Good:

It's Fast. Really Fast.

The Bad:

The price, clearly. Few can justify spending 10g's on a bike, but those who can will appreciate a ride that is truly next-level. Also, in reference to the factory build: A bike of this caliber probably ought to come with carbon bars, and we certainly prefer a shorter stem. Shorter even than we might run on it's smaller-wheeled brother, so as to quicken the steering of such big wheels.. We've found that it behaves quite nicely with something around 40mm. Wider bars are nice too. Other small frustrations are the proprietary rear hub spacing, and shock mounts. but we understand that both are concessions that must be made for a bike to handle the way this one does.

Overall Review: In fact fast is a bit of an understatement, If you've ridden wagon wheels before you're acutely aware of their propensity for gathering speed, but the likelihood is that as soon as you encountered the need to change direction, quickly or otherwise, the frame that held them began to feel real big. Not so with Specialized's E29 - it's only 6mm longer than it's 26-inch-wheeled counterpart, and once you've overcome the novelty of looking down at a giant front tire, you'll likely forget that you're aboard a 29er at all. Even in the more affordable Comp version (which is not light, by the way) this bike's Read More »
Rate review: +4 Up Down
Vital MTB member HutchsBikes
30885 HutchsBikes http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/30885/avatar/c50_Hutchs_logo_sprocket_black_1399338739.jpg?1399337913 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/HutchsBikes,30885/all 05/05/14 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/HutchsBikes,30885/setup 2 3

Renthal BMX Single Ply Grips

Featured Member Review

“great minimalist grip”

C138_49150

The Good:

light, long lasting, cheap

The Bad:

none so far

Overall Review: My go to grips in the past were the Odi ruffians lock-on, but I was I was looking for something even more minimal. I purchased the kevlar version which is supposedly the tackiest and the longest lasting. I was not disappointed. The grips are super light and even thinner than the ruffians since there isn't the plastic core that the lock-ons rest on. I cut the flanges off of the end with a razor blade and it mounted up with a little elbow grease. If you have access to an air compressor I would recommend going that route. I was a little concerned about grip slippage since these aren't lock-ons these haven't given me any Read More »

Race Face Narrow/Wide Chainring

“Benchmark bolt-on”

C138_wide_black

The Good:

The narrow/wide tooth profile is an absolute must-have on any 1x setup. Ditch your chain-guide and actually improve chain-retention, for less than $40. Absolute no-brainer.

The Bad:

A bit louder than the Sram offering, but that's really splitting hairs.

Overall Review: If you're one of the many people running a 1x setup, but still have yet to shell out for XO1 or XX1, this is the only way to go. Chain management has never been better, and the versatility of the 104 BCD is unmatched. Then you look at the price tag - there's probably no better way to improve your AM, FR or DH bike for $35.
Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member HutchsBikes
30885 HutchsBikes http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/30885/avatar/c50_Hutchs_logo_sprocket_black_1399338739.jpg?1399337913 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/HutchsBikes,30885/all 05/05/14 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/HutchsBikes,30885/setup 2 3

Lizard Skins DSP Grip

Vital Review

“Tested: Lizard Skins DSP Grips”

C138_lizard_skins_dsp_grip_black
Review by Justin Schroth and Joel Harwood // Photos by Justin Schroth Lizard Skins recently applied their DuraSoft Polymer (DSP) technology to their mountain bike line, allowing them to create a grip that does not require an inner plastic sleeve or lock-rings. The result is a grip that is super lightweight with a soft feel and thin profile. Previously the DSP material was used to make bar tape for road bikes, touting improved durability, increased shock absorption and superior grip in all conditions. Curious to see how the DSP grip stacks up against a sea of other options, we mounted a few pairs and hit the trail. DSP Grip 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 8 233 25 1

FSA Afterburner Stem

Vital Review

“Tested: FSA Afterburner Handlebar and Stem”

C138_fsa_afterburner_stem
Review by Dave Trumpore // Photos by Dave Trumpore and Gary Perkin FSA’s Afterburner line of mountain bike components have suited cross-country and trail riders quite well over the years, offering reliable and lightweight performance. The lineup includes handlebars and stems, which come in various rise, width, and length options. The alloy stem was recently redesigned to reduce weight, and has a new faceplate as well. Let’s see how the combo faired on trail. Afterburner Handlebar Highlights Material: AL7050/T6, Triple-Butted, Tapered and Shot-Peened Clamp Size: 31.8mm Width: Low Riser - 630, 685, or 740mm // Flat - 600, 620, Read More »
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Vital MTB member davetrumpore
1982 davetrumpore http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/1982/avatar/c50_89971110_1266365822.jpg?1290155202 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/davetrumpore,1982/all 02/16/10 5 7 710 1 1 9 2 92 7

FSA Afterburner Handlebar

Vital Review

“Tested: FSA Afterburner Handlebar and Stem”

C138_fsa_afterburner_bar_low_rise
Review by Dave Trumpore // Photos by Dave Trumpore and Gary Perkin FSA’s Afterburner line of mountain bike components have suited cross-country and trail riders quite well over the years, offering reliable and lightweight performance. The lineup includes handlebars and stems, which come in various rise, width, and length options. The alloy stem was recently redesigned to reduce weight, and has a new faceplate as well. Let’s see how the combo faired on trail. Afterburner Handlebar Highlights Material: AL7050/T6, Triple-Butted, Tapered and Shot-Peened Clamp Size: 31.8mm Width: Low Riser - 630, 685, or 740mm // Flat - 600, Read More »
Rate review: 0 Up Down
Vital MTB member davetrumpore
1982 davetrumpore http://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/1982/avatar/c50_89971110_1266365822.jpg?1290155202 http://www.vitalmtb.com/community/davetrumpore,1982/all 02/16/10 5 7 710 1 1 9 2 92 7

Race Face Narrow/Wide Chainring

“Great affordable upgrade”

C138_wide_black

The Good:

light, lots of teeth options, cheap, it works!

The Bad:

not really a bad, but I recommend using with clutch derailleur

Overall Review: As others have said, get the number of links and chain tension correct and you'll be golden. I'm running a 30T and 11 x 32 on a 9speed setup with a clutch rear derailleur and haven't dropped a chain. I had a chain guide but have since removed it and haven't regretted my decision. Been on this setup for a year now and have no regrets. I ride in fairly rocky terrain and like to jump, hit drops, and pop off of natural trail features. The chain has miraculously stayed on when in the past I've always had to run a chain guide. If you want to run 1x, for the price, it's hard to choose anything else.

Topeak Pocket Shock DXG Pump

“good reliable shock pump”

C138_474075

The Good:

compact, accurate readings, tough, reasonable price

The Bad:

none really

Overall Review: I've had this pump for about 2 years now, and I use it for a couple of bikes that have both air forks and shocks. It's compact enough that I always drop it in my hydration pack when I ride. The air valve works and I always get accurate readings. There's a little air loss when I disengage from the valve but I attribute that mostly to the air trapped in the hose. When reattaching it the pressure readings remain consistent. I've dropped it many times on rocks and pavement and it's held up. No broken glass or off-readings. Basically, this is a good  shock pump that is accurate and reliable. I don't have to think about it which means that it's doing it's job!