By Vernon Felton
Photos and Video by Dan Barham
“The only Buyer's Guide that matters.”
How's that for a ballsy statement? Yeah, it's arrogant as hell, but bear with me for a second.
Now in its third year, Bike's Bible of Bike Tests is entirely different from every other cycling Buyer's Guide and here's why—we actually test the stuff in our Guide.
Every year we ditch the office, our spouses and pets, and camp out for a month of bashing shiny, new stuff on some of the toughest trails in the country. The end result? Well, it's not long-term testing (this is just a month of building bikes, riding them, breaking them back down and such), but the words you read in our Bible come from real-life trail testing.
There's nothing else like it in the bike industry. Almost every other "buyer's guide" is simply a smattering of studio photos and the editors' best guess at which products should be worth your while this year.
That, in a word, blows.
Which is why our Bible of Bike Tests is different. We ride. We beat on things. We accumulate injuries. You, in turn, get words that are based on honest trail time.
Want to check out 2012's best bikes, forks, disc brakes, travel adjust seatposts, and wheels? All of our Bible of Bike Tests content (as well as all of our regular issues) is available on both your iPhone and iPad.
Here's a short clip of our photo shoot for the XC bike test opener. This is Ridgeline trail in Dupont State Forest—after a few miles of mellow, rolling climbs (though by your 5th or 6th lap of the day, it stops seeming "mellow"), you're dumped onto several miles of swoopy, buff, singletrack nirvana. If we seem addled and groggy in the video, it's because I forced everyone to get up at 5 AM that morning to capture what became our cover photo for the issue (the glowing, slickrock image). At this point in the morning, all we wanted were five heaping plates of shrimp and grits. This explains why Dan Barham is talking like a very cultured zombie, Brice is drumming on tires and Squirrel is identifying spiders trailside. There also may or may not be a scene in here in which Seb Kemp is showing his arse to the camera… it was that kind of morning.
We’ve added a new feature to the Bible of Bike Tests download:
← When you see this icon on a page, tap it and it will direct you directly to not only the manufacturer’s website, but directly to the webpage of the product we reviewed.
To download your copy of the Bike magazine Bible of Bike Tests click here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/bike-mag/id469444271?mt=8