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Added a comment about product review Purpose Built Top Level Enduro Bike, But Beware of New Shock Technology 9/15/2017 11:21 AM
David.Max

I'm no fan of proprietary parts either, but when Trek introduced the knock block it actually struck me as a good idea... To the extent that I am considering putting the Acros version of the idea on my next bike. That said I've never interacted with a knock block equipped bike in real life so maybe there is something that I'm missing here.

The main benefits I can see is never having your fork over rotate after dumping the bike in a crash. As a pure bred race machine this makes sense to me. While racing I have had crashes where I have to flip the bars back 180 degrees before I can get going again. This is just one more thing to do that costs seconds while the clock is ticking. Obviously the best thing is to simply not crash, but if you can build in a simple feature that can minimize the potential time lost in a crash that seems like a good thing to me. Being able to run run shorter cables and clean up the cockpit a bit and since you don't have to allow for the over rotation of the fork seems like an ok knock on benefit benefit.

Like you said its not a make or break feature, but I would be curious if had any more thoughts to share on why you're opposed to it, especially since as I understand it it doesn't require you to use a Bonrtager stem.

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This product_review has 32 comments.

Added a comment about video Intersection | Micayla Gatto's Mixed Media Ride 9/7/2017 12:27 PM

Cool vision and neat execution of it... Think I would have liked to see the art overlays taken even further into the surreal/psychedelic realm, but really that's just and opinion and everybody has got one.
Props for doing something different!

As a side note, it's kinda funny to notice that she's rocking the pink and red jersey and helmet from Ferda girls... Like she said though, colour rocks!

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This video has 1 comment.

Added a comment about feature Transition Patrol vs. Patrol - See How the 2018 Compares 8/28/2017 9:33 AM
David.Max

As another taller rider, I'm excited to try these out. No way to say for sure without having ridden one, but based on what I've heard so far I'm seriously interested in a Sentinel as my next bike. As far as the seat tube angle is concerned, the actual seat tube angle doesn't look crazy steep, like on say a Pole, so my intuition is that once you have 180mm + of seat tube extended up from the frame that it will still be a reasonable pedalling position. Overall it seems like fighting the front wheel less and not being so deep in the sag while climbing will make up for whatever is lost.

In the end, pedalling position can be further tuned by moving the saddle on its rails. Its not a widely available option, which is too bad, but 9.8 offer interchangeable 0 layback and 25mm layback heads on their Fall Line posts allowing riders to really play with what works for them. I haven't checked with them on this, but it also looks like you could run the 25mm layback head in reverse if you wanted to experiment with steeper seat tube angles. My one concern right now is that on an XL the 640mm top tube might be a bit short for me when combined with a 40mm stem. That is also a product of the steep seat tube angle, so like you said there are no free lunches, just good compromises.

Out of curiosity how tall are you and based on the numbers would you see yourself on a L or an XL?

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This feature has 45 comments.

Added a comment about feature Transition Patrol vs. Patrol - See How the 2018 Compares 8/26/2017 4:30 AM
David.Max

Can anybody explain why the seat angle gets slacker as you go up in size? Across the range from an XS to an XL it goes from 78.4 to 76.1, dropping about 0.5 degrees per frame size. This is something that Transition has been doing for some time and I've always struggled to understand it. A taller rider will almost always be running more seatpost than someone on a smaller frame, moving their weight further back when they are climbing. This is then further exacerbated by slack actual seat tube angles... I really wish that companies would publish this number along with the virtual seat tube angle.

I'm 6'4 with a 38" inseam, meaning that I run a lot of seat post. On my Nomad with a similar length seat tube to an XL Patrol I have about 225 mm of post above the frame. With that amount of post extending from the frame the actual seat tube angle makes a notable difference in where my weight is centered for climbing. I'm really intrigued by the SBG concept, but I'm also really struggling to understand the logic involved in slackening the seat post angle as you go up in size. If anyone here would care to enlighten me I'd really appreciate it.

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This feature has 45 comments.

Added a comment about news blog Introducing Race Only Springs 8/15/2017 11:13 AM
David.Max

Not to take anything away from these springs which look really cool, but whatever happened to this?

http://www.vitalmtb.com/photos/features/INTERBIKE-Part-2-Some-of-the-Latest-and-Greatest-for-2015,8119/MW-Industries-Carbon-Composite-Bellows-Shock-Spring,82137/bturman,109

It looked like a really interesting tech that would allow for almost infinite, modular rate tuning... I don't know enough about belleville washers to know if they can be scaled down enough to work in a fork, but I'm kinda surprised that this hasn't made it to market for rear shocks yet. Any thoughts?

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This news blog has 20 comments.

Added a comment about feature WINNING BIKE - Jesse Melamed's Rocky Mountain Altitude 8/15/2017 11:07 AM
David.Max

Second that.
Also what fender and GPS is he running? The GPS looks kinda surprisingly big and awkward ....

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This feature has 28 comments.

Added a comment about feature BIKE vs. BIKE - Richie Rude's Yeti SB6 27.5 or Cody Kelley's Yeti SB5.5 29er 5/29/2017 12:41 AM
David.Max

Yup, me too!
Super insightful and interesting for all us bike nerds!

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This feature has 6 comments.

Added a comment about product review Review - 2017 Rocky Mountain Slayer from Vital MTB Test Sessions 5/4/2017 7:20 AM
David.Max

It's interesting to see how different people can experience the same bike. My time on the Slayer was limited to a single test run in Squamish, but I found it was a bike I could just jump on and go. The demo bike was set in its slackest setting and I was concerned that climbing might be a handful, but I didn't really find it hard to keep the front end down and the taunt pedal response meant that I could just put the power down and it would zip up the trail. On the way down I actually found it to be quite sprightly and playful, responding really well to rider input and picking up speed as I pumped terrain. I felt like my weight was well balanced and centred on the bike and I didn't really experience the front wheel pushing that you mentioned.

I wonder how much of my experience is dependant on the bike that I was coming from and fit? I've been riding a generation 3 Nomad for the past 2 seasons and I am quite used to the slack head angle when it comes to climbing. On the Slayer I didn't have any more issues keeping the front wheel in check than on the Nomad and I found the steeper seat angle and the efficient pedalling to make the job easier overall. Likewise, on the way down I found the Slayer was more willing to dance around the trail and respond to rider input than my Nomad, which I would describe as a bit of a 'plow bike.' Previously, I'd never really thought of my Nomad as being 'mushy,' but that is the word that stuck with me when switching back to it after riding the Slayer.

It could be that fit was a big portion of my experience. I'm 6'3" tall with a 38" inseam and long arms. I've never really had the opportunity to upsize a bike, and looking back on it many of the bikes I rode in the past were simply to small. The trend towards longer, lower, and slacker has been a blessing for me and each time I get on a bigger bike it tends to feel better. At the time I bought the Nomad it was on the cresting wave of the new geometry, but since then bikes have continued to grow. The measurements on an XL Slayer effectively make it just about a size bigger than my XL Nomad. The taller stack in particular really seemed to help feel at home on the bike straight away.

Anyhow, I really appreciate your honest reviews and that you call it as you see it, but I just wanted to offer something of a contrasting perspective, albeit based on a much shorter time on the bike.

This product_review has 9 comments.

Added a comment about feature Greg Minnaar's Prototype Santa Cruz V10 29er 4/28/2017 8:08 AM
David.Max

As someone who is pretty much exactly Gregs's size and who had long struggled to find a bike that fits properly until the whole longer, lower, slacker thing came into play I really understand where he is coming from! It's wonderful thing to get on on a bike and just have it feel right, and when you are 6'3"+ there usually isn't an option to upsize! It's just a matter of searching for the biggest bike available and making it work.

To me the bike just looks right and the wheels are totally in proportion with the size of it. I've been a fan of Greg's since I started watching DH years ago and I hope he kills it this weekend! This is racing and may the best combination of man and machine (unpowered) win!!!

This feature has 14 comments.

Added a comment about photo OneUp Pedals 4/26/2017 1:52 PM
OneUp Pedals

OK, thanks!
And now I'm curious...

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This photo has 3 comments.

Added a comment about photo OneUp Pedals 4/26/2017 10:25 AM
OneUp Pedals

Lots of cool bits here to be sure! But I was wondering what happened to the RM Slayer review? Is it going to be dropping sometime this week?

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This photo has 3 comments.

Added a comment about product review Review - 2017 Trek Remedy 27.5 from Vital MTB Test Sessions 4/11/2017 2:55 PM
David.Max

I just wanted to say that I really have been appreciating the thoroughness and detail of your reviews. Brandon and Steve have been nailing it in particular with really thoughtful analysis of how the bikes perform and why that is.

I know this review is about the Remedy, but when are you going to release your Slayer review? I had a short demo on one recently and was really impressed by it overall... to the extent that I'm thinking of trying to trade in my 2015 Nomad for one. I'm eagerly waiting to hear your thoughts on it!

This product_review has 10 comments.

Added a comment about slideshow Toughest Day Ever? Wynner, Wynner - EWS Rotorua Race Day 3/28/2017 5:39 PM
Toughest Day Ever? Wynner, Wynner - EWS Rotorua Race Day

Yup, me too! I love the forma!
That said, I might be in the minority here, but I'd also love the option to keep the audio on, but either turn the music off, or choose a different tune... It's not that it's bad, but its been the same for a looong time!

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This slideshow has 5 comments.

Added a comment about photo Mondraker Dune RR 3/2/2016 1:48 PM
Mondraker Dune RR

Beautiful bike from a design standpoint. I wonder if it rides as good as it looks? I still haven't seen any reviews other than the launch info last summer. How about it Vital?

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This photo has 1 comment.

Added a comment about video The Audi Commercial with Gwin 3/1/2016 5:25 PM

This video has 23 comments.

Added reply in a thread Gearing, What's Really Best? 3/1/2016 1:16 PM

Nice, Thanks for the feedback! Does it feel like it pedals smoothly in the 9 tooth cog?

Added reply in a thread Gearing, What's Really Best? 3/1/2016 8:39 AM

I don't think that a "best" system really exists. It's always going to be dependant on where you live and what you ride. I live in Nelson, BC where the climbs and descents are usually both steep and long . Around here you need a pretty low gear to grind ... more »

Added a comment about feature Bike vs. Bike - Yoann Barelli's Giant Reign or Adam Craig's Giant Trance 3/1/2016 7:26 AM
David.Max

Cheers! Thanks for all the details smile

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This feature has 19 comments.

Added a comment to moreda_5's bike check 2/28/2016 1:32 PM
Bronson 2.0 with Di2 XTR, and extras like Slik Graphics

Sweet build for sure!
How are you liking the e13 TRS+ cassette? On paper it looks like a a really good idea. Are you finding that it shifts well and has reasonable gaps between gears? Also, where did you tuck the battery for the Di2?

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This setup has 10 comments.

Added reply in a thread What Are YOU Most Picky About Regarding Setup? 2/28/2016 12:47 PM

Bar roll seems to be the big one for me. Pretty much straight up and down, if it's rolled back too much it just feels strange! That and brakes. The levers have to be at exactly the same angle to each other and have the same bite point. I've got pretty ... more »