2019 Devinci Troy Carbon 29 GX Eagle LTD

Vital Rating: (Outstanding)
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2019 Devinci Troy Carbon 29 GX Eagle LTD Matte Black/Bronze
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Tested: 2019 Devinci Troy 29 GX LTD

Blurring the lines between play and plow

Rating: Vital Review
Tested: 2019 Devinci Troy 29 GX LTD

The last time we spent some miles aboard the Devinci Troy was back in 2016 during Vital MTB Test Sessions. At the time, we were impressed with the (then 27.5) bike’s ability to be pushed hard. A lot has changed since our last ride. With new standards, shock mounts, suspension improvements, wheel options, and geometry tweaks to look forward to, we were excited to spend a few months aboard the latest Devinci Troy to see if all the updates would retain the qualities we liked and refine those we weren’t so thrilled with. With three months of ride time under the tires, it's time to fill you in on our findings.

Highlights

  • Carbon DMC-G frame with carbon link
  • 29-inch wheels
  • 140mm (5.5-inches) of rear wheel // 160mm (6.3-inches) front travel
  • Split Pivot suspension // Metric 185x52.5mm Trunnion shock

The last time we spent some miles aboard the Devinci Troy was back in 2016 during Vital MTB Test Sessions. At the time, we were impressed with the (then 27.5) bike’s ability to be pushed hard. A lot has changed since our last ride. With new standards, shock mounts, suspension improvements, wheel options, and geometry tweaks to look forward to, we were excited to spend a few months aboard the latest Devinci Troy to see if all the updates would retain the qualities we liked and refine those we weren’t so thrilled with. With three months of ride time under the tires, it's time to fill you in on our findings.

Highlights

  • Carbon DMC-G frame with carbon link
  • 29-inch wheels
  • 140mm (5.5-inches) of rear wheel // 160mm (6.3-inches) front travel
  • Split Pivot suspension // Metric 185x52.5mm Trunnion shock mount // Coil compatible
  • Asymmetric construction
  • Super Boost Plus rear hub spacing (12x157mm)
  • Two-position adjustable geometry
  • Molded downtube and chainstay protection
  • Threaded bottom bracket
  • Post mount 180mm rear disc brake
  • Weight: 30.9-pounds (14.0kg, claimed, size medium without pedals)
  • Zenith, red, and black/bronze color options
  • MSRP: $5,799 USD as tested

Strengths

  • Pedaling efficiency
  • Capability and versatility – Excels on both pumping or plowing terrain
  • Excellent "real world" style build kit

Weaknesses

  • Wide rear end
  • Tall stack height
  • Small bump compliance isn't ideal

Devinci's Top Priorities for the Troy 29

According to Devinci MTB Engineer, Chris Benoit, the key design goals for the new Troy 29 were as follows:

  • Elevate riding experience: Update geometry, change flip chip location for ease of use and improved stiffness, update suspension to metric sizing with trunnion mount, and tune frame stiffness to provide a very capable yet dynamic ride.
  • Meet upcoming market demand: Threaded bottom-bracket, larger tire clearance, front ring clearance while keeping short chainstays to preserve the riding characteristics Devinci is known for, and utilize Super Boost Plus rear spacing.
  • Make it tough/durable:A lifetime warranty on these bikes means they need to stand the test of time.
  • Main priorities for the suspension:Similar kinematic progression, update for metric shock, new spring curve developed in partnership with RockShox in Colorado.
  • Dedicated 1X drivetrain
  • Update the anti-squat for 29-inch gearing and Troy-specific center of gravity.

Geometry

For the sake of comparison, it is worth noting that geometry numbers are nearly identical between the Troy in 27.5 and the newer 29-inch variety. There are only slight adjustments to allow for bigger wheels on the Troy 29. Like its predecessor, the new Troy features adjustable geometry by way of a flip chip that is now located at the lower shock mount. We rode ours in the High setting for a couple of weeks, however we’ve settled in more comfortably in the Low setting. This slackens the head angle by a half-degree to 66-degrees. The new geometry numbers aren’t pushing boundaries by any means, but small refinements have been made to ensure that the Troy satisfies the masses. Reach numbers have grown slightly to 465mm (size Large in the Low setting), while chainstay length remains fairly short at 432mm.

Initial Impressions

The all-new Devinci Troy 29 retains the same boxy look as the previous generation, however up close there are a number of differences. The frame, including the rocker link, is now entirely carbon. The aesthetics of the Troy haven’t changed much, but refined frame protection, internal cable routing, and single-sided hardware are sleek additions to a bike that was already a looker. Another simple-but-useful addition is a two-position bottle mount, which allows for a torpedo-sized bottle in the lower position, or a regular bottle and tube when in the upper position. The upper bottle mount also makes room for a piggyback shock. A threaded bottom bracket now graces the frame, keeping maintenance simple.

The Trunnion-mounted shock provides 140mm of rear travel and is controlled by the Split Pivot design, which Devinci has been implementing for quite some time now. We’ve always been fans of Dave Weagle’s designs, but one drawback of the Split Pivot is that the rear end has a lot of moving parts. What was already a wide rear end gets even wider with the new Troy, as Devinci employs a Super Boost 157mm rear axle. Devinci’s decision to utilize Super Boost spacing wasn’t necessarily their favorite option, however it allowed them to achieve the rear chainstay length they wanted and also offers plenty of room for mud clearance and up to 27.5x2.8 or 29x2.4-inch tires. Our bike came stock with a 29x2.4-inch Maxxis Minion DHR2 WT out back, and there was plenty of space for more rubber. The rear axle is a DT Swiss RWS thru-axle, which provides easy wheel removal, but makes an already wide rear end even wider. Since most riders are carrying a multi-tool these days, we would have preferred something with a flush mount to improve clearance.

At first glance, Devinci appears to have nailed the build kit for the Troy 29 GX LTD. The LTD version sports a RockShox Lyrik fork with shorter offset and 10mm more travel than the Pike that comes standard on other models. The 160mm Lyrik slackens the head angle, while the shorter offset leaves wheelbase effectively unchanged. All of the build kits are smartly equipped, with four carbon models ranging from $4,999 tp $8,799 USD, plus two aluminum models in either wheel size. After scanning the entire lineup, we were stoked that Devinci offered us the GX LTD build kit, which is just about the perfect setup for our needs.

On The Trail

We kept our Troy 29 GX LTD north of the border in Squamish, British Columbia, along with a few trips to the surrounding areas. The beauty of a place like Squamish is that the diversity of weather and riding allows us to test just about every scenario that a bike might encounter. From flow trails to uber-jank, moon dust to fall slop, our Troy saw it all.

With the RockShox Lyrik fork and Deluxe rear shock, setup was straightforward. Both came with one Bottomless Token/Band installed, and we started off with slightly firmer settings than recommended at 20% rear sag. We went this route as our experience has been that we’ve always preferred a firmer setup, and also knowing that the factory-installed Bottomless Token and Bands are generally fewer than we usually like.

Out of the gate, the Troy 29’s reach felt longer than the numbers would suggest, which was a welcome surprise. At 5’11” tall, the Large felt perfect while both seated and standing. Fairly neutral geometry helped us feel at home quite quickly.

With our initial setup, the Troy's performance felt balanced and comfortable right off the bat. The new Troy’s spring curve remains progressive, but slight adjustments and new shock setups have improved the rear end performance throughout the entire range of travel. We eventually settled at 25% sag, where small-bump compliance was good, albeit not outstanding. The tradeoff there is losing some of its lively feel and great acceleration. We found that a few pedal strokes had the Troy up to speed quite quickly, especially for a 140mm wagon wheeler. We tried dropping air pressure and adding Bottomless Bands to improve small-bump compliance while preventing bottom outs, but while compliance improved the bike wasn’t as agile or playful so we went back to an early setup. The Troy is still a fairly progressive bike, so we stuck with a single Bottomless Band and used full travel where and when appropriate.

Devinci nailed it as far as climbing goes.

The Troy 29 GX LTD climbs easily and is very well balanced between efficiency and enough suspension action to provide good traction. Whether grinding up a fire road or climbing technical singletrack, the Troy climbs better than most all-mountain bikes we’ve thrown a leg over. The rear wheel tracks terrain effortlessly and we found ourselves cleaning technical, ledge-laden climbs easily in all three compression settings. The longer-travel Lyrik fork remains planted. Devinci raised the bottom bracket very slightly with the new Troy, but it stays fairly low at 339.5mm. Nevertheless, we only experienced a few pedal strikes and we’ll take the blame for bad timing. We always dabble in local cross-country racing (because there’s usually free beer at the end), and while it is hardly World Cup XCO, it is a testament to the Troy’s pedaling prowess that we managed to hold our own among the spandex bandits aboard their much shorter travel rigs. This is not generally the case when we ride 140mm bikes with proper tires. Regardless of what the climb was, the Troy was efficient enough to prevent wasteful suspension movement, but supple enough that rocks, roots, and ledges were absorbed and traction maintained. Devinci nailed it as far as climbing goes.

When pointed downhill, the Troy 29 GX LTD continued to impress. The expectation for the 160mm Lyrik is complete confidence, and while 140mm may not scream “capable,” the Split Pivot rear end keeps right up. When we last rode the Troy back in 2016, we enjoyed the balance between play and plow, and the new Troy has this trait in spades. Like the bike it replaces, the new Troy feels like it has more travel than it does and remains remarkably composed in terrain that has some enduro bikes chattering about. The rear end handles successive hits very well and doesn’t seem to get hung up or pack in. In every scenario that an all-mountain bike might encounter, the rear wheel simply tracks the ground without issue. Compared to some other bikes, we found that our flat-pedal feet remained firmly planted in sections where we might be wishing for clips. Even when dragging our brakes on steeper terrain, the Troy 29 felt solid.

Some bikes that provide excellent traction early in their travel tend to wallow or not leave enough travel for bigger hits, but this is not the case with the Troy as it ramps up nicely without becoming harsh. We used full travel often enough that we considered adding a second Bottomless Band, and had we been racing or spending more time riding chairlifts, we likely would have. Another plus that came along with the progressive suspension was just how much the Troy rewarded pumping. Any well-timed rider input resulted in what felt like "free speed" and more time listening to a great-sounding rear hub. Depending on the venue, the Troy could make a great enduro bike, especially with a couple of part swaps that we’ll refer to later.

...the rear end takes over for plow or play, whichever style you choose.

On rolling terrain, the Troy 29 really shines. The efficiency previously mentioned gets the Troy up to speed, and then the rear end takes over for plow or play, whichever style you choose. The 160mm front and 140mm rear ends are very well balanced; shifts between seated and standing, or transitions between climbing and descending are seamless. Those familiar with Squamish know the trails in the Alice Lake Provincial Park area tend to have a wide variety of features and styles within a single trail, and this is where we found the Troy 29 really shined. The Troy was solid, predictable, and just plain fun in every scenario.

We recall noting that the previous generation of the Troy was a handful at times due to just how progressive it was. While it handled big hits quite well, it transmitted quite a bit of feedback to the rider and not always in a good way: at times, it could be exhausting. The new Troy has quieted this feedback, yet further refines its ability to deal with repeated square edges. Across the board we were very impressed with the latest improvements, and the addition of a bigger wheel option it means that regardless of wheel preference, all riders can play. Users can expect the Troy to handle anything thrown at it, especially the Limited version we rode, which carried speed easily and saved our bacon on more than a few instances. The more we rode the Troy, the more we enjoyed it.

Build Kit

At a glance, it is clear that considerable thought has gone into the Troy 29 GX LTD. We aren’t sure who pushed for including this build for the 2019 model year, but we’re sure glad they did. With the addition of the Limited build, Devinci has joined the list of brands who now offer burlier build kits for riders who don’t mind hauling a little more weight, or sacrificing a half degree here or there in favor of a more aggressive setup. We have always been fans of having these options included, as there is nothing more frustrating than spending a few thousand dollars on a bike only to immediately spend another few hundred replacing wimpy tires, long stems, narrow bars, or worse yet, something more expensive. The fact that a number of bike companies are beginning to recognize the need for builds like the GX LTD is a good thing. Devinci has smartly equipped every model of the Troy, but the $5,799 GX LTD is definitely the highlight.

The cockpit is nicely equipped with 800mm Race Face Next carbon bars mated to a 50mm stem. This setup ought to keep everybody but Greg Minnaar satisfied in terms of width, and there’s plenty of room to cut things down to personal preference. The Troy’s 634mm stack height is on the tall side, and we tend to run front ends pretty low, which meant a slammed stem on our large frame. The SRAM drivetrain, brakes, and dropper are mated cleanly as we have come to expect, with Devinci’s Performance grips rounding out the cockpit. These grips are thicker than what we had previously been running, but within a few minutes of riding we had forgotten about them altogether. Front end = dialed.

SRAM’s GX Eagle drivetrain leaves very little to gripe about. The only maintenance required during our time aboard the Troy 29 was the odd adjustment of the b-tension screw, which we’ve noted is typical for SRAM’s 12-speed drivetrains, requiring all of thirty seconds before rolling out. The GX drivetrain was faultless otherwise. When things got truly choppy, Devinci’s rubberized frame protection muted chain slap effectively. We also appreciated the inclusion of OneUp’s Switch chainring, which meant easy gearing customization when we had steep, sustained climbs on the menu. The Switch setup is advantageous for racer-types too.

What really sets the GX LTD build apart from the others offered by Devinci is the inclusion of the 160mm RockShox Lyrik with a shorter offset.

SRAM's Guide RSC brakes mated to 200mm and 180mm Centerline rotors did their thing without complaint, and we had no braking issues to speak of. The wheelset utilizes an asymmetric Race Face ARC 35 rim and traditional J-Bend spokes, which in combination have been a nice balance between stiffness and compliance. When all testing was completed, the rims had a little more “character” after finding a few sharp edges, but the wheelset as a whole has impressed us. Devinci wrapped the wheels in Maxxis Minion DHF WT and DHRII WT tires, which have a great profile on the 35mm internal width rims.

What really sets the GX LTD build apart from the others offered by Devinci is the inclusion of the 160mm RockShox Lyrik with a shorter offset. While the longer fork slackens things slightly, a 42mm offset keeps wheelbase from growing. When we hopped aboard the Troy, we didn’t bother looking too closely at the build since we prefer that the builds speak for themselves through ride quality and we don’t want to bias our opinion. In the case of the GX LTD, our conclusion is that the front end feels just about perfect. The cockpit components, wheels, and fork are complementary and provide a ton of grip and enough damping that we kept noting just how capable and how well-balanced the bike felt regardless of the mismatched travel.

Things That Could Be Improved

The only potential improvement that we noted is that we felt the GX LTD build deserves just a little more. The Lyrik unleashes the Troy’s potential as an EWS-ready bike. Rather than just adding the fork and calling it a day, though, we would have loved to see Devinci dive right in. The addition of Code brakes, a 170mm dropper, and a piggyback shock could turn what is already a great bike into a full-on mid-travel weapon. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Devinci pro riders, Damien Oton or Keegan Wright, do exactly this at the 2019 Enduro World Series. These changes might add a few pennies to the overall cost of the build, but we’d still be keen.

Long Term Durability

Other than the odd rinse and typical adjustments, we didn’t touch the Troy during the three months we had it. Not a single pivot bolt came loose, no creaks developed, and all of the parts are still running strong. We were curious to see how the relatively complex rear end would hold up, but the bearings remain smooth and no play has developed. Granted, there are a lot of moving parts surrounding the rear axle, so Devinci provides users with a detailed maintenance guide. The frame is also covered by Devinci’s Ride In Peace warranty should any defect occur.

What’s The Bottom Line?

If it isn’t clear yet that we like this bike, let us be clear: the Troy 29 GX LTD is a bike that deserves to be short-listed. It is a very well-balanced, all-mountain bike that packs a punch. The frame features great construction and attention to detail. The suspension has an excellent equilibrium between efficiency, play, and plow, which makes the Troy 29 GX LTD a true all-mountain bike that is very capable. This bike will make just about anybody feel fitter and more talented than they probably might be. Those who favor really pushing it on descents and aren’t afraid to turn trails into rhythm sections will be especially fired up by the new Troy.

Visit www.devinci.com for more details.

Vital MTB Rating

  • Climbing: 4 stars - Excellent
  • Descending: 4.5 stars - Outstanding
  • Fun Factor: 5 stars - Spectacular
  • Value: 3.5 stars - Very Good
  • Overall Impression: 4.5 stars - Outstanding

_______________________________________________________________________

About The Reviewer

Joel Harwood – Age: 35 // Years Riding: 20+ // Height: 5’11” (1.80m) // Weight: 185-pounds (83.9kg)

Joel’s unique coaching background and willingness to tinker with products bring an objective perspective to testing. He dabbles in all types of racing, but is happiest simply exploring the limitless trail networks surrounding his home of Squamish, BC. Attention to detail, time in the saddle, and an aggressive riding style make Joel a rider that demands the most from his products while exposing any shortcomings.

Photos by Jessie McAuley

Specifications

Product Devinci Troy Carbon 29 GX Eagle LTD
Model Year 2019
Riding Type Trail
Rider Unisex
Sizes and Geometry
S (low, high), M (low, high), L (low, high), XL (low, high) View Geometry
Size S (low, high) M (low, high) L (low, high) XL (low, high)
Top Tube Length 583mm, 581mm 606mm, 604mm 630mm, 628mm 654mm, 652mm
Head Tube Angle 66.0°, 66.5° 66.0°, 66.5° 66.0°, 66.5° 66.0°, 66.5°
Head Tube Length 95mm 105mm 115mm 125mm
Seat Tube Angle 74.5°, 75° 74.5°, 75° 74.5°, 75° 74.5°, 75°
Seat Tube Length 400mm 440mm 460mm 495mm
Bottom Bracket Height 339.5mm, 346mm 339.5mm, 346mm 339.5mm, 346mm 339.5mm, 346mm
Chainstay Length 432mm, 430mm 432mm, 430mm 432mm, 430mm 432mm, 430mm
Wheelbase 1167mm 1191mm 1215mm 1242mm
Standover 710mm, 715mm 724mm, 729mm 746mm, 751mm 760mm, 765mm
Reach 425mm, 430mm 445mm, 450mm 465mm, 470mm 485mm, 490mm
Stack 616mm, 613mm 625mm, 622mm 634mm, 631mm 643mm, 640mm
* Additional Info Adjustable geometry via flip chip
Wheel Size 29"
Frame Material Carbon Fiber
Frame Material Details Carbon DMC-G (Devinci Monocoque Carbon - Gravity) frame, chainstays, and seatstays, molded rubber downtube protector
Rear Travel 140mm
Rear Shock RockShox Deluxe RT3 Debonair, 185mm x 52.5mm trunnion mount
Fork RockShox Pike Charger 2 RC2 DB, 15x110mm Boost axle, 42mm offset
Fork Travel 160mm
Head Tube Diameter Tapered, 1.125" top, 1.5" bottom
Headset FSA Orbit 1.5 Zero Stack
Handlebar Race Face Next R, 35mm clamp, 20mm rise, 800mm width
Stem Race Face Turbine R, 35mm clamp, 50mm length
Grips Devinci Performance, lock-on
Brakes SRAM Guide RSC, Centerline rotors, 200mm front, 180mm rear
Brake Levers SRAM Guide RSC
Drivetrain 1x
Shifters SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed
Front Derailleur N/A
Rear Derailleur SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed
ISCG Tabs ISCG05
Chainguide N/A
Cranks SRAM GX Eagle, Super Boost
Chainrings SRAM GX Eagle, 32 tooth
Bottom Bracket SRAM DUB 73mm threaded
Pedals N/A
Chain SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed
Cassette SRAM XG1275, 12-speed, 10-50 tooth
Rims Race Face ARC35, 35mm inner width
Hubs Race Face Vault, 6-bolt discs, 32 hole, 15x110mm Boost front, 12x157mm Super Boost rear with XD driver
Spokes Stainless 14g with Nylok
Tires Front: Maxxis Minion DHF, 3C, EXO, TR, 29" x 2.5" WT
Rear: Maxxis Minion DHR II, 3C, EXO, TR, 29" x 2.4" WT
Saddle SDG Fly Mtn
Seatpost RockShox Reverb Stealth, 1x remote
Seatpost Diameter 31.6mm
Seatpost Clamp Standard single bolt, alloy CNC, 37mm, black
Rear Dropout / Hub Dimensions 12x157mm Super Boost
Max. Tire Size 29" x 2.4"
Bottle Cage Mounts Yes (single); three bolt set gives two placement options
Colors Gloss Red, Gloss Zenith Green, Matte Black/Bronze
Warranty Lifetime frames; 1 year pivots, paint, and decals
Weight 30 lb 14.5 oz (14,020 g)
Miscellaneous Split Pivot suspension
Asymmetrical construction
Internal cable routing
Price $5,799
More Info

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