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FSA Afterburner WideR Wheelset

Vital Review

“Tested: FSA Afterburner WideR Wheelset”

C138_aft_mtb_f

The wheelset market is forever getting more and more competitive, especially around the $500-$600 mark. Quality wheels with strong rims and good hubs can be found complete or built at this price point, so anything less than very good will inevitably fail to make much of an impression here. Read on to find out how FSA's new Afterburner WideR hoops held up to our testing. Strengths Straightpull hubs give purposeful look Covers most current axle spacing standards Comes with tubeless rimstrip (not installed) Compliant ride without excess flex Fast rolling Weaknesses Graphics stickers seem a little out of place with Read More »

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Vital MTB member Zoomlinski
2655 Zoomlinski https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/2655/avatar/c50_91001400_1272558654.jpg?1290157451 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/Zoomlinski,2655/all 04/29/10 1 19 27

Manitou Mattoc Pro Fork

Featured Member Review

“High Performance, High Value”

C138_manitou_mattoc_fork_red

The Good:

Surprisingly stiff chassis.
Great feeling air spring.
Low weight.
User serviceable and tuneable.

The Bad:

Tooled through axle.
Reverse arch may present issues with mud and hose routing.
Proprietary tools.

Overall Review:

The Mattoc easily stands up to its competition in the form of the Rockshox Pike and Fox 34 in a more tuneable and cheaper package. As a lighter rider (65Kg) I have long felt that the market leading forks from the big brands are overdamped. Those forks have to please a wide range of riders and I found myself just outside of the range of externally adjustable damping. Though, even if you’ve never found a problem with the damping range of your fork, the user tuneable damping (and air spring) of the Mattoc is a feature that you just don’t get with a Pike or 34. Excited at the prospect of tuning the fork myself (with the help of Read More »

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Vital MTB member ThomDawson
37573 ThomDawson https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/37573/avatar/c50_19E51A3E_7D30_4EFF_BEE4_40775FFB8D65_1512067770.jpg?1512067278 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/ThomDawson,37573/all 09/15/15 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/ThomDawson,37573/setup 51 72 3

2018 Canyon Spectral CF 9.0 SL

Vital Review

“First Ride: The All-New 2018 Canyon Spectral”

C138_spectral_cf_9_sl

The 140mm trail bike market is a crowded one. Depending on where one looks it could be XC, trail, all-mountain, enduro… you name it. Canyon’s new Spectral doesn’t really seek to check any box in particular – instead, Canyon designed their new trail machine to fulfill the needs of the go anywhere, ride everything mountain biker. No labels, no niche, just get out and have a laugh with your friends and ride whatever comes around. Part long-legged XC bike and part enduro weapon, the new Spectral has an interesting combination of frame design and component choices that will likely appeal to a wide variety of riders. As a Read More »

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Vital MTB member hurricanejoel
27998 hurricanejoel https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/27998/avatar/c50_IMG_0156_1462806162.jpg?1462805225 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/hurricanejoel,27998/all 10/17/13 1 92 4 30 25

2018 Norco Sight C 29 1 Bike

“Makes all mountain riding fun again.”

C138_sight_c1_29

The Good:

Super responsive and playful. Still holds its line at speed. Great climber. Amazing components.

The Bad:

A tad stiff in the rocky chunder (but really that's to be expected for a 135mm travel bike).

Overall Review:

I love this bike. It's made my all around riding much more fun. The platform transfers pedal strokes to forward momentum extremely well. This makes the cross hill and uphill sections of your ride more fun. Yes, I've written "more fun" twice now. The bike still absolutely rips on the downhill. The solid Fox 36 up front helps here but the rear suspension is really solid and supportive as well. It is not as 'plush' as my 160mm Enduro was but I'm not going back to that platform again because those bikes, as versatile as they are, are still a bit of a slog on steep uphills and long xcountry. The Norco Sight will still ride every Read More »

2017 Evil The Wreckoning X01 Eagle Bike

“2018 Evil Wreckoning Ride Review & Impressions Video”

C138_the_wreckoning_x1_blue_three_quarter_front

The Good:

Endless DH capabilities || Stable || Cool Factor

The Bad:

Bad Pedal Bob || Limited Rear Tire Clearance || $$$

Overall Review: <p>Hello everyone! I got a change to do a ride review on one of my bucket list bikes in the Evil Wreckoning. Man is this a DH monster. I could honestly see myself slapping a DH fork on this and just having it be my DH bike. It was that good. Anyways, check it out and let me know what you think. If you have a Wreckoning, let me know if my thoughts mirror yours or if you have any advice on set up to make climbing a little better. Considering this as my next bike. </p>
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Vital MTB member TamiJean
29160 TamiJean https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/29160/avatar/c50_CMeagher_160612_0817_1511384188.jpg?1511383676 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/TamiJean,29160/all 01/09/14 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/TamiJean,29160/setup 8 3 12 5

Kenda Helldiver Tire

Vital Review

“Tested: Kenda Hellkat and Helldiver Tires”

C138_kenda_helldiver_tire

There was a time when riding Kenda tires was a rite of passage in a mountain biker’s life. The Kenda Nevegal or Small Block 8 could be found at just about every trailhead. More recently, however, Kenda had fallen out of favor with riders as development seemed to stagnate while new tires and technologies from companies like Schwalbe, Maxxis, e*thirteen, and even in-house brands proved to be great options. Upon signing with with Polygon UR World Cup downhill team it was only a matter of time until Kenda produced a new aggressive tread. Their latest effort takes shape with the recent release of the Hellkat and Helldiver tires – Read More »

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Vital MTB member hurricanejoel
27998 hurricanejoel https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/27998/avatar/c50_IMG_0156_1462806162.jpg?1462805225 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/hurricanejoel,27998/all 10/17/13 1 92 4 30 25

Kenda Hellkat Tire

Vital Review

“Tested: Kenda Hellkat and Helldiver Tires”

C138_kenda_hellkat_tire

There was a time when riding Kenda tires was a rite of passage in a mountain biker’s life. The Kenda Nevegal or Small Block 8 could be found at just about every trailhead. More recently, however, Kenda had fallen out of favor with riders as development seemed to stagnate while new tires and technologies from companies like Schwalbe, Maxxis, e*thirteen, and even in-house brands proved to be great options. Upon signing with with Polygon UR World Cup downhill team it was only a matter of time until Kenda produced a new aggressive tread. Their latest effort takes shape with the recent release of the Hellkat and Helldiver tires – the Read More »

Rate review: +1 Up Down
Vital MTB member hurricanejoel
27998 hurricanejoel https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/27998/avatar/c50_IMG_0156_1462806162.jpg?1462805225 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/hurricanejoel,27998/all 10/17/13 1 92 4 30 25

MRP Ribbon Fork

Featured Member Review

“The Ribbon Brings Ultimate Adjustability, Performance and Light Weight”

C138_mrp_ribbon_hose_clip

The Good:

Near infinite adjustability, high performance damper, light weight, superb overall performance.

The Bad:

Lots of adjustments can be overwhelming, and it takes a little time to get it dialed. Not quite as stiff as a Lyric.

Overall Review:

The Ribbon offers more adjustability and performance than any other fork on the market while still coming in at a relatively light 4.2 lbs for the 29 version. With the FullFill negative/positive air springs you can dial in the amount of suppleness you like, using less air in the negative chamber to make it firm off the top or more air to maximize small bump compliance. Then with the Ramp Control you can dial in the progressivity, so you can have a fork that's super supple off the top but resists bottoming out on big hits, or go the other way and make it firm for pedaling, but able to use full travel on more moderately sized trail Read More »

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Vital MTB member kramerica5000
22428 kramerica5000 https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/22428/avatar/c50_IMG_4430_1512485397.jpg?1512485227 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/kramerica5000,22428/all 03/01/13 1 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/kramerica5000,22428/setup 7 2

MRP 1X V3 Chainguide

“Ineffective”

C138_mrp_1x_v3_iscg05_mount_carbon

The Good:

Initially quiet while it works

The Bad:

Too flexy to keep chain in place. no longer quite once you loose the rubber inserts

Overall Review: <p>When the chain do pop out - it shoves the guide upward and ripps the rubber inserts out. since it's on a nerrow-wide chainring - you need a tool to remove the useless guide to reinstall the chain. now your race run is over, the rubber inserts are lost garbage somewhere in the bushes, and the guide is no longer quite and is completly worthless. </p>
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Vital MTB member galb
42001 galb /images/default/avatar/c50.png https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/galb,42001/all 08/09/16 1 1

2017 YT Jeffsy CF 27 Pro

Vital Review

“Tested: 2017 YT Jeffsy CF Pro 27”

C138_2017_yt_jeffsy_cf_pro_27_red01

The wheel size debate is a dead horse beaten into mushy glue by this point. The hatred forged by some toward 29ers is likely rooted in experiences from a time when the only options were Gary Fisher hardtails. The market has matured, and frame, wheel, suspension, and tire selection have come a long way. 27.5 and 29-inch bikes are different tools that excel in different ways. That being said, this tester has a hard time wrangling many 29ers. Remember how Danny Hart had a skid mark up his ass for the first half of the 2017 season? That skid mark is how some of us feel on big wheels. This past February, YT introduced the Jeffsy Read More »

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Vital MTB member k.shiz
14 k.shiz https://p.vitalmtb.com/photos/users/14/avatar/c50_image.jpg?1292282110 https://www.vitalmtb.com/community/k-shiz,14/all 07/24/09 75 23 52 591 101 167 1 261 20 12