Why That Bike? | YT Capra

If you've ever cruised our Bike Check section, the largest collection of badass bike builds on the internet, you know that Vital members spare no expense when it comes to radifying their rides. Always on the hunt for a backstory, we reached out to the owners of these six direct sales destroyers to find out what went into each project. 27.5 or 29, factory build or custom, these sick sleds all have one thing in common: they're built to go hard. What do their owners have to say about them?

nickb01's YT Capra 27 CF Pro Race

Age: 28

Where do you live? Christchurch, New Zealand

Favorite local trail to ride? Too many to list, right now I’m enjoying Loess Rider and Swingers Party in the Adventure Park.

Why did you pick the YT Capra? It’s a smooth big hitting bike almost as solid and plush as a proper DH bike, but still has really decent trail bike manners, so I don’t feel the need to have a separate trail bike and DH bike. For a bike of its size it’s a capable climber and pedals really well.

Is this YT Capra your only bike? No, I have a YT Dirt Love DJ bike, and a Giant Propel road bike.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? I had two previous MK1 Capra’s before switching to the MK2, but before that it was a Giant Reign.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? It was pretty much perfect as-is, but I changed the saddle to a Kevlar SDG Fly, grips out for Sensus Lite, and my Fox Transfer lever didn’t last long so now have an e*thirteen TRS+ lever on there.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? The 180mm Fox suspension package is a winner, though the TRS cassette works really well too. 

What would you change on it? I’d like a Grip2 damper in the 36, and think I’ll try the new LG1 EN tires with a semi-slick on the back. I’d also love to have XX1 11 speed as I like the feel and adjustability of SRAM, and don’t feel the need for 12 speed.  

Did you have any concerns buying from a Direct-To-Consumer brand? Yes, I was worried about the sizing, but I read enough reviews and feedback to feel reasonably confident, and 3 bikes later I’m still on the same size (L)! I do all my own mechanic work so servicing wasn’t a worry for me. 

How long do you plan on riding this bike? I like to keep my bikes fresh, and wouldn’t mind swapping frame colours, so may get a 2019, but I’ll likely stick with the Capra for a while.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? I’ve been tempted to build up a custom YT Jeffsy with 150mm Float X2 out back and 160mm 36 up front, but would also like to try the Yeti SB6, Trek Remedy or Commencal Meta V4.2. Dream bike though is Neko’s Worlds Tues, or one of Loic’s Bruni’s Demos!

View nickb01's bike check.


mrbunj's YT Capra 29 CF Pro

Age: 47

Where do you live? Carlsbad, CA

Favorite local trail to ride? La Costa Preserve.

Why did you pick the YT Capra? Frame Geometry - XXL size, long reach, size specific chain stays and low seat tube/stand over (I’m 6’4” and fit is a challenge). Color scheme...love the red on black. Oh...and the price for the spec was super attractive.

Is this YT Capra your only bike? Yes.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? Yeti SB5.5c custom build with IBIS 942 wheels. 

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I swapped out the wheels and tires for Santa Cruz reserve carbon 30’s with Maxxis Minion DHF and Aggressor tires both in 2.5". ODI lock on grips, Fabric seat, Real World Cycles bottom bracket (recent), otherwise stock.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? It handles very well for a big bike, and it’s just so much fun to charge down a trail on it. And the color scheme with subtle logos is great.

What would you change on it? Needs a 200mm dropper instead of stock 150mm.

Did you have any concerns buying from a Direct-To-Consumer brand? Not really. I know the early YT’s had some frame issues, but they have gotten past that. I am a decent DIY mechanic and wasn’t worried about bike set up (I did need help dialing in the shifting but it’s perfect now). The rear brake was not great until I had it bled. Plus I bought my prior bike from Jenson so almost the same experience even though the brand was not mail order. The biggest risk was that I bought this within a week of release and didn’t know if the geo on paper would translate to the real world. But it did, so all good! Now they are sold out for eternity.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? Until I’m too old to ride trails that need this level of bike OR when I am done paying college tuition for my 2 kids.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? If I were replacing this bike, I would likely go Yeti SB130. If I were adding to the quiver, I’d go for a lighter trail bike like a Canyon Spectral or an Intense Primer or Trek Fuel.

View mrbunj's bike check.


utopiaarch's YT Capra 27 CF Pro Race

Age: 40

Where do you live? Semarang, Indonesia.

Favorite local trail to ride? Ngaduman, Mt. Merbabu.

Why did you pick the YT Capra? I picked the Capra because I need an enduro bike with the longest travel. Plus, the Capra is able to take a dual crown fork.

Is this YT Capra your only bike? No, at the moment I also have an Intense M16 Carbon and a Focus Jam C.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? This bike replaced a Pivot Firebird 27.5.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I bought the complete bike and added some hop-ups like tires,  wheelset, crank, handlebar and titanium bolts.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? The bike is very stable and the rear end is amazing. Very smooth!!!

What would you change on it? I wish it pedaled better (compared to the Pivot Firebird).

Did you have any concerns buying from a Direct-To-Consumer brand? Honestly, here in Indonesia, shipping and customs are a pain in the ass. Recently I claimed warranty due to a broken front triangle. I had to wait almost 2 months just to received confirmation about my warranty issue because I had to ship the parts to Taiwan by myself. My replacement parts did not arrive yet, and when they do I'm afraid I'll have to pay import tax again.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? I don't really know, meanwhile she pleased me so muchhhhhh!

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? I'm waiting for my Pivot Firebird 29 this Christmas!

View utopiaarch's bike check.


majki1978's YT Capra 29 CF

Age: 40

Where do you live? Bielsko-Biala, Poland.

Favorite local trail to ride? The enduro trails network in Bielsko.

Why did you pick the YT Capra? Best value for money.

Is this YT Capra your only bike? No.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? Kellys Swag, an enduro rig with 160 mm travel.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? I customized it slightly: WTB saddle, changed fork spring for 170mm DebonAir and changed rear travel to 170 by removing the stroke limiter, installed a smaller chainring, swapped tires for Bontrager 29x2.6 and went with a 170mm seatpost instead of the stock 150mm.

What’s your favorite part about the bike? It's awesome!

What would you change on it? Nothing, now! 

Did you have any concerns buying from a Direct-To-Consumer brand? Nope.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? 3-4 years.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? Maybe I would try a DH bike.

View majki1978's bike check.


Spumpie's YT Capra 27 CF Pro

Age: 37

Where do you live? Philippines / Singapore

Favorite local trail to ride? Mt. Ugo, Patiis DH track and Bataan Enduro/DH tracks.

Why did you pick the YT Capra? Perfect geometry/sizing for me. Long wheelbase, perfect for enduro and DH riding.

Is this YT Capra your only bike? Yes!!!

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? 2017 Specialized S-Works Enduro 650b.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? Custom. Replaced the cockpit, I prefer to use my old setup (Magura brakes, Deity bars and Renthal stem). I also used my bombproof DT Swiss 240s with 471/511 combo wheelset. Lastly...Maxxis tires all the way!

What’s your favorite part about the bike? The frame and suspension. I’ve ridden a medium sized Nomad 3 and S-Works Enduro before, they felt small especially when riding steep trails. Got the large size frame and it was damn perfect for my riding style. Able to use it on XC, enduro and DH tracks.

What would you change on it? Thanks to Bryan Regnier for showing that the Capra can handle DH forks. Just got my 40’s and excited to try 'em on!

Did you have any concerns buying from a Direct-To-Consumer brand? Nope...this is perfect as we are saving lots of $$$.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? As long as I have it.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? None!

View Spumpie's bike check.


Wholesome_Folsom's YT Capra 29 CF Pro

Age: 29

Where do you live? Bellingham, Washington, USA.

Favorite local trail to ride? It may sound a little cliche considering all the epic trails in the area, but one of my favorite trails is on Galbraith mountain. I love doing a quick top to bottom down Evolution to Pump Track to Atomic Dog. I grew up in the flat lands of North Carolina where there is no shortage of BMX style dirt jumps, but the single track is all entirely flat with no jumps. The thing I love about Galby is how I get the opportunity to take that BMX style to the mountains with the plethora of jumps incorporated throughout all the trails.

Why did you pick the YT Capra? I can't lie, I honestly picked the YT for likely the same reason almost everybody else gets one: price. I don't work in a bike shop or have any industry deals but I ride at a high enough level that I really need (i.e. want) a high end bike but can't justify paying retail. Before the consumer-direct business model, this left the only option to purchased used. I was in the market for a new long travel 29er to replace my wallowing Evil Wreckoning, and when YT released all the information and the price on the new Capra's, I almost instantly clicked "Add to Cart".

Is this YT Capra your only bike? I grew up racing downhill on the South East circuit, as well as lots of street and dirt jumps, so it's hard for me to justify only one bike. Although modern day trail bikes are labeled as quiver killers, a 160mm travel bike ain't gonna cut it at the pump track, and at Whistler a downhill bike really does trump all.  I ride a dialed 2013 Yeti Dirt Jumper set up single speed with two brakes and a Fox 831, and a 2017 Specialized Demo 8 carbon for those shuttle days. I will say my YT is the bike I predominantly ride the most.

What bike did this replace / What bike were you on before this? My trail bike before the Capra was the Evil Wreckoning, which I liked but I was in search of a slightly longer and slacker bike for all the steep high speed trails in the area.

Did you go for an off-the-shelf build or did you customize the build? YT only offers their bikes as complete builds, so I went with the Pro version that is one step below the Gucci Pro Race. The main difference is carbon wheels, which I didn't feel I needed to spend another 1000 dollars for. Another big difference that I'm not entirely sure I understand is that the Pro Race has 170mm travel front and rear while the Pro and all the lower models have 160mm travel (in 29er mode). It wouldn't cost too much to upgrade the air sleeve on the 36 to 170mm, and I've considered trying it but since I have a downhill bike I haven't quite felt justified needing that.  Other than that, the stock Pro build is top notch, but I did upgrade the stock e*thirteen wheels and tires to my set of Industry 9 Torch J bend hubs on Easton ARC 30mm rims. I also upgraded the Fox Transfer 150mm dropper post to the 185mm Bike Yoke Revive, which so far has been worth every penny. I have long legs and can't get enough range out of a 150.  

What’s your favorite part about the bike? I love the way the bike rides, the faster and rougher the trails the more it eats it up. I installed a larger volume reducer in the rear shock and I love the way the bike ramps up for all the big hits and the steep lips. I ride a size large and it's definitely the biggest large I've ridden to date, but I'm getting used to it. With the 2.5 tires and 800mm bars, it feels like a downhill bike. It's set up stock with Code RSC brakes with 200mm rotors, a chainguide with a bash guard, and a beefy build throughout, so it's amazing how it only weighs 31 pounds and shreds downhill. 

What would you change on it? The paint quality. The paint seems to chip too easily. I've owned the bike for 6 months and it has several chips on it. It doesn't seem to scratch much just chip off. I'd also like to try the bike with a reduced offset fork and a Cane Creek angleset to slacken it to 64.5. My roommate rides a Transition Sentinel that at first I thought was entirely way too slack but now I want to try it. This wouldn't be ideal if you use the bike for tame trails, but that isn't what this bike is designed for and the level of the riding in the PNW puts it to the test.

Did you have any concerns buying from a Direct-To-Consumer brand? So far this is my first consumer direct bike and I haven't had any issues. The bike came in a very professional package with solid instructions and even included the tools needed to build it up. I have not yet had any warranty-related issues so I can't speak to that potential problem yet.

How long do you plan on riding this bike? I got the bike in April of this year, and I'll likely ride it through the winter before selling it to get a new bike. It honestly may just be another Capra, to be determined, but I usually try to get a new model each year to sell it before the value tanks too much.

If you could get another new bike (any kind/type) right now, what would you get? Honestly, I think all the new high-end bikes are solid these days, so while I want a shreddy long travel 29er, it will most likely boil down to what bike I can get the best price on. I'm partial to the local brands of Transition and Kona, but it's too early to say.

View Wholesome_Folsom's bike check.


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