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BIKE TEST: Yeti SB5C

IT’S BEEN ONLY A TAD MORE THAN THREE YEARS SINCE YETI introduced its ‘Switch Technology’ suspension platform on its ‘SB’ (Super Bike) line of full-suspension rigs, drawing accolades from longtime Yeti lovers while also converting new members to the tribe. We at Bike were early advocates of the company’s flagship Switch Technology bike–the 6-inch-travel, 26-inch-wheeled SB-66–and we reveled in the countless hours of trail time spent aboard that capable all-rounder.

All bikes

48 Hours on the Kona Hei Hei Supreme and the 24 Hours of Old Pueblo

02.24.2012

Writing a review of a bike during a press camp is like saying you’ll marry someone after the first date. There simply isn’t enough time to get entirely used to a bike after a brief ride or two.

Santa Cruz Shredfest in Sedona

02.22.2012

The international assemblage of irreverent mountain-bike hacks gathered at Santa Cruz Bicycles’ big-wheeled bike launch in Sedona, Arizona, has embarked on its third day of riding—and the fleet of shiny new 29ers has long since been covered in thick layers of Sedona’s famous terracotta-colored dust.

Bike Test: 2011 Trek Top Fuel 9.8

02.02.2012

You’d be hard pressed to find a sub-par bicycle in the over-five-grand category. Heck, you’d be hard pressed to find a questionable bike in the three-grand category these days. Simply put, there are a lot of good bikes out there. Trek’s 2011 Top Fuel, however, is exceptional.

Bike Test: 2011 Felt Virtue Expert

01.30.2012

Felt Bicycles, as a company, has a decidedly XC racer-ish flavor to it. There are more hardtails in the 2012 line up than full suspension bikes, which is sort of a rarity these days in the bike business. And when it comes to the long-travel end of the spectrum, Felt offers their five-model Virtue series.

Bike Test: Specialized Enduro Pro

01.23.2012

The Enduro has been a mainstay of the Specialized line for more than a decade, and in that time it’s morphed from a gangly dualie with an anemic 4.5 inches of rear squish, to the space-age gravity beast you see here.

Bike Test: Kona Abra Cadabra

01.05.2012

Our goal was to design an enduro bike that would climb like an XC bike and descend like an all-mountain bike. The Cadabra is designed to transition between climbing and descending mode intuitively, no switches necessary. Pedal forces keep the Magic Link from engaging for shorter, more linear travel, while speed and bumps engage the linkage for more deeper, progressive travel.

Bike Test: Rocky Mountain Slayer 70

01.03.2012

“Our goal was to create the best all-mountain/enduro bike possible. It needed to be light (sub 30 pounds) and pedal well on long climbs, yet have enough travel (6.5 inches) and burl to tackle the steepest. gnarliest descents. In short, the perfect “one bike” for all terrain.”

Bike Test: Transition TR250

12.28.2011

Aesthetically speaking, Transition’s TR250 stands out from the other big-travel bikes in our test. Out on the trail, the Transition proved just as unique: It’s a nimble-yet-fearless, mini-DH bike.

Bike Test: Cannondale Jekyll Ultimate

12.22.2011

By Joe Parkin Cannondale Jekyll Ultimate $8,000 / cannondale.com Maybe it’s just me, but Cannondale’s new Jekyll is one powerful finalist in the Most Anxiously Awaited New Bike category for 2011. Perhaps it’s the unique and complex Fox Racing Shox DYAD RT2 rear shock that can change the Jekyll’s rear-travel characteristics at the flip of […]

Bike Test: Intense M9-FRO

12.16.2011

By Brice Minnigh Intense M9-FRO $3,150 (frame with Cane Creek Double Barrel shock) / intensecycles.com When we first began riding this blood-red Intense M9-FRO almost a year ago, we were so blown away by its penchant for pure speed that we likened it to Slayer and Sepultura: Fast, uncompromising and relentless. After several months—and many […]

Bike Test: Specialized Safire FSR Pro

12.02.2011

Specialized Safire FSR Pro $4,500 / specialized.com

Bike Test: Jamis Dakar XCT 4

11.21.2011

Before testing the Dakota D29 hardtail for this year’s Bible of Bike Tests, I hadn’t climbed aboard one of Jamis’ offerings for a long time. In fact, the last time I can remember goes all the way back to when this magazine was a toddling two-year old. I enjoyed the company’s hardtail 29er so much that I jumped at the chance to see what they’re capable of in the full-squish department. Jamis did not disappoint.

Bike Test: Tomac Supermatic 120-1

11.18.2011

One of the newest additions to the growing Tomac line is the Supermatic 120. This new trail bike wrangles 4.7 inches of rear suspension out of an all-carbon frame that weighs just five pounds (including rear shock). So, yeah, it’s damn light. The real motivator, however, behind building the Supermatic out of carbon was to boost stiffness. Joel Smith, Tomac Bikes’ owner and principle designer, has said that his goal with the Supermatic 120 was to create “a trail bike with cross-country sensibilities and downhill capabilities.” It took just a few miles of particularly nasty singletrack to confirm that this is more than just idle talk.

Bike Test: Dual Review – Rocky Mountain Element 70 MSL

11.16.2011

From the Designer The Element MSL is designed to be one of the stiffest and lightest 120-millimeter bikes on the market while still retaining the qualities that Rocky Mountain is known for: race pedigree, rough-and-tumble durability and technical descending prowess. By developing some new technologies, we were able to hit our performance targets and create a bike that rides like a Rocky should. —D'Arcy O'Connor

Bike Test: Norco Range 2

11.14.2011

The Range is Norco’s new all-mountain model. Bucking the carbon-fiber trend (for now, at least), Norco crafts the Range’s carcass out of 6061-aluminum. The main frame is a sexy mix of hydroformed tubes replete with nice touches, including integrated dropper-post cable guides and a set of finger holds, molded into the rocker link, which allow for easier portaging during hike-a-bikes.

Bike Test: Breezer Cloud 9 Ltd

11.10.2011

Lively and carbon are two words not often used in the same sentence unless prefaced by the word ‘not.’ Somehow, however, Joe Breeze managed to meld these words nicely together. The bike had a playful feel, when pushed through corners and mobbed though rock gardens, usually reserved for steel or high-end aluminum frames.

Bike Test: Dual Review – Intense Tracer 29

11.08.2011

We wanted to make a 29er for the non-29er crowd—no disrespect intended—a burly 29er that was made to thrash and play, yet still had the finesse to hammer uphill and on the flats. We wanted to build a bike that would be ahead of its time and would define the category. —Jeff Steber

Bike Test: Devinci Wilson RC

11.05.2011

The completely redesigned Devinci Wilson is a radical departure from previous incarnations of its downhill platform.

Bike Test: Specialized Epic Comp Carbon 29er

11.02.2011

It was no surprise when Specialized issued a 29er version of the Epic last year. If ever there was a bike that cried out for a big-wheel makeover, it was this one. The Epic is a dyed-in-the-wool racer.

Bike Test: Yeti SB-66 Pro

10.27.2011

By Brice Minnigh Yeti SB-66 Pro $6,150 / yeticycles.com We at Bike were among the first few journalists in the world to get some shred time on Yeti’s brand new all-mountain bike, the SB-66 Pro—which features a completely redesigned suspension platform intended to make it the company’s best-pedaling bike to date. In what felt like […]

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