DSC00830 deniz merdano revel rascal emma
First Look

Revel Rascal V2

Photos Deniz Merdano
Reading time

The Revel Rascal V2 is a carbon, 29-inch-wheeled short travel trail bike with 140mm of travel up front and 130mm in the rear. The first Rascal was released back in 2019, and was certainly the bike that put Revel on the map. The new release is a combination of old and new, keeping some foundational parts the same, but adding some as well.

You may be noticing the Revel brand popping up more frequently as the company expands its presence into new markets both domestic and international. The creation, engineering and refinement of the Rascal V2 took place in Carbondale, Colorado, where the company is headquartered. Consisting of a small and dedicated team, Revel takes pride in its craftmanship, rooted in a deep appreciation for bike culture and good times that forms the foundation of the company’s identity.

Revel Rascal Frame Details

  • Available in 5 sizes: S-XXL
  • Carbon frame only
  • SRAM UDH compatible
  • Threaded bottom bracket
  • Canfield Balance Formula (CBF) suspension
  • Integrated headset with carbon bearing seats
  • Internal cable routing
  • Lifetime warranty on frames

Revel Rascal Frame Details

Like the Rascal V1, this bike is offered in a full carbon frame only, however Revel claims the improvements it has made to the carbon layup and the frame itself have made it almost 20% stiffer while still managing to shed 150 grams. New pivot hardware with bigger bearings and axles also contribute to the increased stiffness and durability.

I appreciate it when a bike comes with adequate amounts of basic protection. The Rascal V2 comes equipped with a debris guard and a beefy chainstay and downtube protector. The rear triangle was also updated for UDH compatibility.

Finer details include titanium shock mount hardware, two sets of mounts for bottles or other fun things (3 sets if you fit the XXL frame) and the reassurance of knowing your bike is not factory assembled by a third party, but instead by their own employees. Built with love I'm sure.

Revel Rascal V2 center of curvature

Revel Rascal V2's instant center and center of curvature.

Rascal Kinematics

Rascal Kinematics.


The Canfield Balance Formula (CBF) is a suspension platform that focuses on the center of curvature, which is the intersection of the rear axle at any point on its path with the instant center. On most multi-link bikes, the center of curvature changes locations as the bike moves through the travel, but the CBF design keeps the center of curvature constant. The idea is that this results in a design that doesn’t bob and that allows for more traction and better overall performance through the whole range of travel.

The kinematics on the Rascal V2 are very similar to the original and reflect the core objective of the bike, which is to be playful, capable and versatile.

RascalV2 Geometry

Revel Rascal V2 geometry.


Some significant geometry changes come from adding the XXL frame size, reducing the gaps between frame sizes while slightly broadening the height range. Revel says the Rascal should accommodate riders ranging in height from 5’1” to 6’8”.

The head tube angle stays the same for all sizes at 65.5º, as does chain stay length at 436mm. The effective seat tube angle is 76 degrees, but increases to 76.5 for the XL and XXL frames. Bottom bracket drop and bottom bracket height measurements are constant throughout all frame sizes at 34.2mm and 345mm respectively.

With no alarming geometry measurement, these are all welcomed modifications from the Rascal V1, which had slightly less modern geometry with a 66-degree head tube angle and a 75º effective seat tube angle.

DSC00855 deniz merdano revel rascal emma

With a 65.5-degree head tube angle and a 140mm RockShox Lyrik, this bike will be very capable. It has the ability to accommodate a 150mm fork.

Build Kits & Pricing

Purchasing direct from their website, Revel offers five different build kits depending on whether you upgrade the wheel set: SRAM GX Eagle, Shimano XT, SRAM X0 Eagle and SRAM XX Eagle. They're all available in either Pinot Gnar or Ponyboy colour. Only a cool mountain town bike company can get away with those names. Frame only is also available for 3,599 USD.

Revel was kind enough to send me a flipping nice bike. I’m testing the SRAM X0 build but with the RW30 V2 carbon rims instead of the Crank Brothers Synthesis Alloy Rims that would have come stock. The RW30 rims come stock on the top spec SRAM XX build of course, and that bike retails for 10,499 USD. With the current & depressing 1.35 conversion rate, you’re looking at just under 14,200 Canadian Dollars for that build. Yikes. Still way cheaper than having a kid, though.

The more reasonable and still very adequate SRAM GX and SHIMANO XT builds are 5,999 and 6,999 USD, respectively.

Rascal Revel V2 Review Bike Build

Fork: RockShox Lyrik Ultimate 140mm
Shock: RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate
Drivetrain: SRAM X0 Eagle Transmission
Brakes: SRAM Code RSC
Rotors: SRAM HS2 180mm front & rear
Cockpit: Trail 1 The Crocket Carbon Handlebar & The Viking Alloy Stem 35 x 40mm
Dropper Post: BikeYoke Revive 2.0 (125mm on the small, 150, 175, and 200 on M, L, and XL/XXL respectively)
Saddle: SDG Radar Lux-Alloy
Bottom Bracket: SRAM DUB WIDE BSA
Front Tire: Continental Kryptotal-F Trail 29 x 2.4 Soft Front
Rear Tire: Continental Xynotal Trail 29 x 2.4 Endurance Rear
Wheels*: Revel RW30 V2 Rims w/ Industry Nine Hydra Hubs

*Wheels not to spec, upgraded from Crankbrothers Synthesis Enduro rims with Industry Nine 1/1 hubs

First Impressions

The folks at Revel say this bike likes to go fast, and they’re not exaggerating. Switching over from my mullet trail bike (a Specialized Stumpy EVO) this thing is a little firecracker, as a short travel trail bike should be in my opinion. I’ve only taken it out on a handful of rides but we are getting along well so far. It's also very quiet.

The pedaling efficiency and minimal bobbing while climbing makes my regular lunch lap seem way too easy. I feel well supported through the travel on technical climbs as the Rascal reacts well to quick changes in power output. It's extremely snappy and keeps traction through the pedal stroke. It’s also very light: my size small weighs 31 pounds (14 kgs) without pedals. That’s around 1.5lbs lighter than my daily driver (with MX wheels) and very noticeable as a 130-lb rider.

It is a very capable and fast descender, requiring the rider to be an active and confident participant. Riding on low angle playful trails, you’re doing no favours holding this bike back from its full potential. It is extremely reactive to suspension loading as I found myself overshooting my regular jumps. Taking it into some steeper and more technical terrain will be the challenge as I noticed the 65.5º headtube angle right away and started to tame down my riding.

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The RW30 V2 Rims are Revel's Fusion Fiber carbon wheels.

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Overall this bike has exceptional build quality and a really nice finish.

The full review will come out in a couple months after I get some good hours in the saddle, and I will be looking at tweaking the cockpit for some steeper terrain while also maximizing the playfulness and versatility the Rascal has to offer.

For the past few years I have gladly watched and cheered on my friends who were brave enough to endure the Whistler Back 40. This year, I was peer-pressured into signing up for this massive suffer fest and Revel has kindly allowed me to keep the bike long enough to race on it. This type of race is best on a short travel trail bike that can handle gnarly descents and long, steep climbs. Stay tuned to see if Ponyboy and I will survive 27 switchbacks...

Tags: Revel, Rascal
Posted in: Bikes - Trail, Features, Gear

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+8 Christian Strachan WasatchEnduro shenzhe finbarr Emma Le Rossignol rolly jhtopilko vunugu

Great intro. I think I'd love a CBF bike, as they seem to be at least one of the current kings of combining snappy pedaling with good compliance.

But oh my what has the mtb world has come to when a 130 mm bike is "very light" at 31 pounds?! :-)


-2 jhtopilko ohio James Hayes rolly Bryce Borlick Lee Lau

I'll admit to giggling slightly that Emma noticed 1.5 lbs of weight difference. 

That's quite literally the difference between a bowel movement or not. Nobody notices that on a 30 lbs+ bike.


0 jhtopilko Lee Lau

For the downvoters, anyone want to argue the point that 1.5 lbs is pretty much invisible on a 30+ lbs bike? Or at least that you can actually notice that general weight difference?

I'm sure on a wheelset, or tires you can, but overall weight changing by that  much... Probably not.



Not a down voter, but I think I'd notice the difference if I took a 1.5lb poo before a ride or waited until after


+1 jhtopilko

Full/empty 750ml water bottle is probably a better equivalent. 

About a 1% change in total system weight for a light rider. 

Perceivable? Probably/possibly by a very in tune rider. 

Noticeable on an average mountain bike ride? I think that's pushing it...



People who aren't strong would notice I suppose, I agree with 1.5lbs is hardly anything considering the rider weight of 130lbs.


+6 paradox@Goet Kos Pete Roggeman WasatchEnduro Falltricky jalopyj

I'm a huge fan of CBF suspension. How it pedals and floats over bumps and how it rails corners especially in size small and medium bikes with short stays.



Just wait for the Vampire. ;)



I’ve never ridden Paul’s corners so fast


+6 Deniz Merdano BarryW dhr999 Cooper Quinn Emma Le Rossignol Jonthehuman

Good luck on the Back40! That Rascal is living the dream in BC right now.

-Team Revel


+6 Cooper Quinn justwan naride HughJass Emma Le Rossignol Pete Roggeman Deniz Merdano

Bike reviews AND family planning advice: you’re really taking it up a notch Emma ;)


+1 ohio

The Canfield Tilt, with a touch more suspension, a little more aggressive geometry and alu frame is an absolute trail weapon. It's very efficient, more capable than the travel would suggest, but most importantly, and absolute blast to ride. Coming from a v1 Sentinel with Cascade link, it is noticeably more engaging and fun in moderate terrain, and has 80 to 90% of the capability when it gets steep and rough.


+1 ohio

Did the pivots that connect the rear triangle to the yoke get beefed up for version 2 (I think this hardware is bigger on the Rail 29?)?

I rode a rascal on the shore/sea to sky for about a season and it was quite capable for 130mm, but at the same time it felt kinda light duty (but I'm a 200lb rider). 

I had problems with those pivots and had to glue them into the frame with bearing retainer to keep them from moving around. They creaked and cracked and probably would have worn out the rear triangle eventually if not glued. I don't love that they're in single shear. 

In general I spent a lot of time trying to keep all of the pivots in good health. It also sized up a little small for me, I am 180cm with a long torso and was on a large, I would have been keen to try an XL but the seat tube would have been too long for me to run a long travel dropper. 

The CBF itself is excellent though. 

The back 40 looks awesome but looks like the prescribed maximum time for completion is about 5 hours, I'm not convinced I could complete it in time, but that's something to aspire to. :)

I love that type of riding and love the type of bike associated with it, not quite xc, not quite Enduro. Just Sea to sky trail riding I guess.



They did refresh the bearings so that they’d be more inline with the Rail 29 and Ranger V2. Bigger bearings, less of them, and easier to maintain.



Looks really great!!



I really enjoyed the Rascal V1. Would love to see you guys experiment with a150 fork to gage the differences in overall capability.


-1 James Hayes

Looking forward to this review. Love the yellow even if I think CBF bikes look a little 'busy' but with how they are supposed to feel I'm certain I could get over that.


+1 BarryW

If you think that's busy, wait until you see the electric version Barry.


+2 ClydeRide Lee Lau

Looking forward to your comment :D


-2 ohio James Hayes Bryce Borlick Lee Lau

We're talking about my comment huh?


As noted above I'm dead certain you can't tell the difference of 1.5lbs. So maybe that can set off the 'Barry made a comment' insanity. 

But really Emma, I love reviews, I'm just an annoying pedant that wants bike reviews to be more pedantic. What can I say? ;-)


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