Sagar-1.jpg
LONG TERM REVIEW

Review: 2021 Rocky Mountain Altitude C70

Words Graham Driedger
Photos Deniz Merdano (Gavin Kennedy & Graham Driedger where noted)
Date Nov 30, 2020
Reading time

Rocky Mountain set out to fill a tall order with the 2021 Altitude; capture the top of the EWS podium, and give amateur riders a platform to push themselves into more aggressive terrain and higher speeds. Seeing as Jesse Melamed piloted the all-new Altitude to win two out of three Enduro World Series stops of 2020, I'd think Rocky is wearing the humble Canadian version of a Cheshire Cat grin.

The 2021 Altitude C70 is an incredibly composed machine which climbs efficiently for a 160mm bike and dances and sends over terrain you'd regularly choose to walk. I'd be lying if I told you I want to give the bike back. For my initial impression of the 2021 Rocky Mountain Altitude C70, including details like geo, spec, and pricing head this way.

DSC03769_denizmerdanodenomerdano_altitude.jpg

Rocky Mountain Altitude C70 Key Features

  • Intended Use: All Mountain/Enduro
  • Size Tested: Large
  • Rear Travel: 160mm
  • Frame Material: Smoothwall Carbon
  • Wheel Size: 27.5" S/M, 29" dedicated to M/L/XL
  • Suspension Layout: Smoothlink four bar
  • Ride-9 geometry adjustment + 2 position chainstay = 18 geometry modes!

Geometry

The 2021 Altitude features modern geometry, but sticks to safe middle-ground numbers instead of going ultra-progressive. Rocky Mountain specs their Ride-9 geometry chip at the lower shock mount, which offers a litany of geometry options. It also alters the suspension's spring rate, which I'll discuss later. The Ride-9 settings allow riders to fine-tune the Altitude to suit a terrain spectrum from steep and chunky to lesser angle flow. Furthering the adjustability equation is a two-position dropout flip chip, giving a 10mm fore/aft chainstay length adjustment.

Ride-9 Numbers:

Due to the staggering amount of numbers associated with the Ride-9 geometry adjustment chips, I'll list the values of position 1 (slackest/most progressive) and position 9 (steepest/most linear). For the full set of geometry values, here's Rocky Mountain's Geometry Chart.

Ride-9 Geometry numbers in Position 1 (slackest / most progressive) and Position 9 (steepest / most linear)

Position 1 Position 9
HA 64.4° 65..5°
STA 75.4° 76.5°
CS 438-448mm 436-446mm
Reach 474mm 486mm
WB 1249mm 1248mm
Screenshot_20201119-103257~2.png

The Ride-9 geometry adjustment alters angles and suspension rates.

Bike Setup

I prefer the nasty steep stuff, therefore I started in position 1, offering the slackest angles and most progressive shock ramp. Eventually I settled into position 3, slightly reducing the linkage progression. The 478mm reach was instantly comfortable, the 75.8° seat angle feels very efficient for pedalling without cramping the cockpit. The 64.8° head tube angle is moderately progressive, but rest assured, the Altitude is incredibly composed in very steep terrain. For those who want slacker, an angle set is easily pressed in.

I primarily ran the long dropout setting. I made the mistake of switching to the shorter dropout position before riding what I'd consider one of the steepest and deepest of the North Shore locale. Off the bat, a steep rock face leads into a high speed, wide open loam chute. This drastic geometry alteration affected the stability in an unanticipated manner. I exited the rock too fast, bouncing and tripod-ing down the soft loam chute, luckily pulling my foot back to the pedal, narrowly avoiding a catastrophic wreck. Lesson learned - geometry adjustments shouldn't be done before committing to high-stakes trails in the middle of nowhere. As Rocky Mountain suggests in their incredibly detailed technical manual: Make gradual, incremental changes, take notes, and be methodical. Don’t adjust in a hurry before a big ride. Take your time and enjoy the process. Noted! Now that winter is bearing down on local trails, speeds have decreased, and I've been running the short dropout position confidently.

Ride-9 Position 3 Geometry numbers w/ Long Dropout selected

HTA 64.8°
STA 75.8°
CS 447mm
Reach 478mm
WB 1249mm

Rocky Mountain recommends 30-35% sag for the Altitude. I was most comfortable at 30% in the rear end. Fox recommends 15-20% sag for the 36 fork, I settled at 19%.

Fork: Fox 36 Performance Elite

  • Air Pressure: 95 PSI
  • Tokens: 1
  • High Speed Compression: 5 clicks
  • Low Speed Compression: 5 clicks
  • High Speed Rebound: 3 clicks
  • Low Speed Rebound: 8 clicks

Shock: Fox X2 Performance

  • Air Pressure: 240 PSI
  • Tokens: 2
  • Low Speed Compression: 8 clicks
  • Low Speed Rebound: 8 clicks

Tires were immediately set up with Tannus Tubeless inserts. I ran 19 PSI front, and 21 PSI rear.

DSC06307_denizmerdano_jurassicexplorer.jpg

Chundery, tight run outs while on the binders? No sweat.

Ride Impressions

When I received the 2021 Altitude, my level of riding was beginning to reach the highest level of my previous season - albeit with inconsistencies. Prior to throwing a leg over the purple 2021 Altitude (AKA The Bicycle Formerly Known As Prince), Local Veteran Shore slayer/Occasional Ebike lover Trevor Hansen was quick to point out that I'd been skipping many a rock roll/gnarly section on some of my favourite trails. Whatever, Trevor. The parasitic ride regression permeated to many a feature I'd been regularly comfortable on. This change begged questions: Am I riding with a better sense of self-preservation? Am I trying to colour within the lines of "riding safely" due to COVID? Who knows. The Autumnal Chicken Hansen, at 57 years young, is not letting up with his own gnar factor. He pointed out that I wasn't riding like myself - once on the trail - and left me to drag behind in the loam until I was reminded again at beer o'clock, post ride.

I'm not stretching the truth when I say that the Altitude quickly put me at the top of many questionable features I'd skipped on recent rides, upping the bar to include these as standard operating procedures. This was not a gradual ascent either - I'm talking, two or three days. Then bigger features came into focus (such as the Dynamite Roll) which I'd not hit yet, but aspired to, a looong way in the future. Now, riding confidence and traction provided by the Altitude wasn't overt, but one which nudged you into considering capabilities, albeit very quicky. A natural inception of fast progression, if that makes sense.

The Altitude is an extremely smooth, sensitive and composed bike. Many days have been spent shuttling hot laps on the local North Shore mountains, and admittedly, not as many rides have been spent earning my turns by climbing. Whether the climb was via smooth roads or techy up-trails, I'd nearly always use the climb switch on the Fox X2 shock. This firms up the ride significantly, allowing minimal suspension bob. While activated, the climb switch also provides a surprising amount of small-bump compliance, and I've not experienced this on other bikes with the same feature. This gives max grip to slower technical ups, where one needs to manage their weight distribution while pedalling smoothly.

DSC06333_denizmerdano_jurassicexplorer.jpg

The Altitude is eager to give traction to climbs, and carries speed easily on flat areas of trail without wallowing in its 160mm of travel.

The Altitude wants to descend fast. Faster than you want COVID to end. Luckily, this isn't a purebred race machine which only rewards advanced riders. The level of small-bump sensitivity is incredible, and it sticks to the ground like shit on your shoe. Janky, awkward terrain leading into a big move is eaten up easily, which lets me keep my eye on the final prize, instead of getting off line and botching it. Rolling into a local, committing, two-step rock feature begins by snaking through off camber roots, down an off camber rock shelf, to a near-flat island of "safety" (with 20ft of exposure on the right) culminating in a steep, funnel shaped rock face exiting into a loose right hand berm. This complex terrain is swallowed by the Altitude. Then, it tells you to go just a hair faster.

A quick yank of the bars will send the Altitude skyward moderately fast, but what I'm most impressed by is how well it tracks, holding a line through slippery, off camber corners. Cornering feels very supportive, encouraging one to turn a hair later than usual. The Smoothwall carbon chassis feels stiff yet not harsh, and rebounds out of corners rapidly. Grip remains high in steep chunder, daring one to keep off the anchors for a just a little longer. The Altitude isn't a plow, but it can plow - preferring to be quick and light over most features, soaking up big hits, and recovering very quickly. During braking, the Altitude is composed and tells me I can stay further forward than I'd regularly be, particularly in the long chain stay setting. On big hits, the end-stroke progression ramps up smoothly, I've not experienced a harsh bottom out. I'm curious to try a coil shock on the Altitude, for even more supple grip, grip grip grip!

DSC06131_denizmerdano_jurassicexplorer.jpg

Don't touch your brakes - the bike will suck it up!

Build Notes

  • The newly redesigned 170mm Fox 36 Performance Elite fork is far more plush than the previous 36 (so much that it reminded me of my first Marzocchi Z1 experience circa 1999), with a near infinite amount of adjustability. In my 2.5 months of testing, the new 36 has unfortunately developed the all too common creaky CSU. This is fairly disconcerting, considering the fork has more or less been improved in every aspect other than addressing the creak. Word on the street is that Fox is now beefing up CSU bonds for the new production run of 36 and 38 forks - time will tell.
  • The X2 Performance rear shock offers low-speed rebound and compression adjustment, is very sensitive and feels balanced with the front end.
  • Shimano XT M8120 4-piston brakes are very strong, but I have experienced the wandering bite point. This isn't a deal breaker, but something to be mindful of. A quick lever pump usually alleviates the wonky throw. A 203mm rear rotor would be better suited than the factory 180mm. The Shimano RT-66 stamped rotors are a budget option compared to pricier Shimano Ice-Tech options. On a few occasions after lengthy descending, I thought the caliper had been knocked, but concluded that excess heat had warped the rotor. Lastly, the well-known audible Shimano pad clack showed up, so I attached thin velcro strips between the pad fins and caliper to eliminate the distracting sound.
  • Rocky Mountain paid close attention to local tire desires, with Maxxis Exo+ Assegai MaxxGrip on the front, and Minion DHR2 MaxxTerra in the rear. The soft compound front tire is the proper tool to tackle snotty roots in the PNW.
  • The wheelset is Raceface AR30 rims on a DT/Swiss 370 rear and Rocky Mountain sealed bearing front hub. I dented the rear rim almost immediately, and later blew three spokes out of the front wheel. I was diligent about checking spoke tension regularly, but many spokes loosened to an uncomfortable (lack of) tension, so a regular trip to ye olde truing stand is advised. I'm a heavier rider weighing 205lb/95kg, I don't think these wheels will last too long, I'll likely fit more robust rim when these are toast.
  • The full Shimano XT drivetrain has been flawless, though I did roach a rear derailleur in a clumsy fall, which was my fault. I'd appreciate a bash guard for chainring protection.
  • Contact points are extremely comfortable.
  • Raceface Turbine R dropper post has a light action and has remained trouble free.
  • The finish has held up admirably during many a dirt lay-down. Cables are routed cleanly, and have presented no wear from jostling around.
  • Molded rubber bits near the drivetrain eliminate any audible chain slap. The underside of the downtube is also nearly fully clad in stealthily molded rubber bits, saving the primo finish from rocks thrown by the front tire, and shuttle rash. There's no need to purchase an aftermarket downtube protector.
DSC06164_denizmerdano_jurassicexplorer.jpg

Grippy daze

Final Thoughts

The $8599 sticker of the Altitude C70 is a bit steep, and I'd prefer to see a stronger wheel set, and a more adjustable damper on the rear. Luckily for hard riders, it's fair to say that aluminum rims are consumables, and won't last forever - allowing the rider to upgrade later on. Besides the wheel issues, the fit and finish of small details on the Altitude is top shelf. The cable routing is clean and the bike is quiet. Rocky goes to the nth degree to eliminate suspension friction, utilizing a bearing eyelet on the upper shock mount. The paint is gorgeous. Bearing shields are utilized to keep the muck out. The flip-chip dropout adjustment coincides with a flippable rear brake mount denoting the direction.

I love the 2021 Altitude. It's a bike which has boosted my riding in a very short amount of time. After seeing a digital maple leaf-wrapped prototype mid summer (Rocky, please put this colour way into production!) I was intrigued to learn that Rocky Mountain was developing a 160mm travel bike, particularly in close proximity to the Slayer release but the Altitude re-establishes its race pedigree with this model. The Smoothlink suspension platform features simple yet elegant lines – not adhering to the current trend of low shock mounting points, but retaining DNA from my high school bike crush, the Rocky Mountain DH Race. The complexities of the Altitude's suspension and geometry adjustability are vast, but the quality of the ride proves that the Altitude is a worthy bike for EWS pros, amateur enduro racers, and trail riders wanting to push their riding to the next level. At 32 pounds, the Altitude can efficiently work all day for the descent, yet is able to smash far harder than I'd originally thought – and I don't think I've come close to finding the limits of this bike yet.

Related Stories

Trending on NSMB

Comments

flattire2
+1 Niels
Brian Tuulos  - Nov. 29, 2020, 11:10 p.m.

Stating the reach changes by 12mm between max steep vs slack settings is misleading. Note the wheelbase changed by a mere 1mm. Again, leaving out stack numbers and only focusing on reach is not a good sizing metric. Sweet bike, on my short list.

Reply

maxc
0
maxc  - Nov. 30, 2020, 6:41 a.m.

I don’t think it’s misleading, it’s likely to be maths. As the front triangle leans back to get slacker, the (horizontal) reach shortens. Meanwhile the slackening of the head angle means the front wheel gets placed further out, and so it’s probably this that means the wheelbase doesn’t change much.

Reply

niels@nsmb.com
+2 Timer Andy Eunson
Niels  - Nov. 30, 2020, 8:11 a.m.

I think what Brian is saying is not that the math is incorrect but that reach on its own does not say much and that it should always be considered together with stack.

Reach and stack together determine the distance between bottom bracket and top head tube or, in a more practical sense, how much space there is for you body in standing position between pedals and bar. The different ride-9 settings only change the angles but not this distance.

Reply

maxc
+1 Niels
maxc  - Nov. 30, 2020, 8:58 a.m.

Aha fair enough!

Reply

Gdreej
+1 Niels
Graham Driedger  - Dec. 1, 2020, 10:06 a.m.

You're completely on the money, Niels. While reach is a metric for me when looking at bikes, stack is 50% of the sizing equation for feel.

Reply

Gdreej
0
Graham Driedger  - Dec. 1, 2020, 10:09 a.m.

I wanted to show the max difference between the steep and slack settings. Sure, reach numbers move slightly and are a small part of the geo package, HA and SA moreso.

Reply

Timer
+7 Grif Niels DMVancouver 4Runner1 jaydubmah Gage Wright MuscogeeMasher
Timer  - Nov. 30, 2020, 6:30 a.m.

Sounds like a really good, very well balanced bike. But this kind of wheelset on a 8.5k bike is shameful.

Reply

Jotegir
0
Lu Kz  - Nov. 30, 2020, 7:56 a.m.

Rocky always skimps out on wheelsets (along with brake rotors and shifters) unless you're getting a 99 level bike. Adding a proper wheelset to many of their bikes takes them from high end to ultra premium. At least in BC that seems to still work, with many people accepting Rocky's place in the Canadian scene. I thought a lot of the 2020 bikes were getting a bit eye-wateringly expensive even before these changes.

But what do I know? 100% of these are pretty much sold already. If you want an Altitude for 2021 you can either pre-order a 2022 or start phoning around and see who still has one. And yeah, it's still 2020.

Reply

tehllama42
+3 Lu Kz Timer MuscogeeMasher
Tehllama42  - Nov. 30, 2020, 9:33 a.m.

Yeah, as much as cheap wheels have improved, I feel like the price should reflect that some of the parts are basically placeholders.  If that was the pricing plan, then setting it up as 'it ships with your winter wheels - go buy some WAO carbon and summer tires on your own', then I'd actually be totally behind it... but at that price, it's hard not to look at slightly inferior direct order options that are 2lb lighter and rocking nicer parts everywhere.

Reply

kperras
+9 Marc Fenigstein Niels DMVancouver Pepe Pete Roggeman Perry Schebel Andrew Major Jonas Dodd Christopher Daniel
Kenneth Perras  - Dec. 1, 2020, 11:02 a.m.

Great review and fair comments on Graham's part. As the PM in charge of this model I do feel the need to address a few comments that some readers have made. 

Manufacturers don't skimp out on any part. It's a careful balance of quality of parts, aftermarket service, and pricing that determines the final spec. Using nicer, branded parts comes at a cost and different customers focus on different components as being vital to their own personal requirements. Sometimes the balancing of spec negatively affects the item that you place the most value on. Maxxis EXO+ vs DD tires are a good example of the endless debate on components. 

Additionally there are many distribution models out there that add to the intricacies of the final price. Today's new Canyon Spectral is a good example of a value-packed bike, but that comes at a cost of lack of aftermarket support in some regions where the bike is sold. This is very much over-simplifying the situation but, in the end, the consumer can decide what they value most and buy accordingly. No hard feelings here. 

If you're set on a Rocky Mountain Altitude and take objection at the spec on the Carbon 70 model due to a few items that you wish were better, you can always spend an extra $400 and spring for the Altitude Carbon 70 Coil. The upgrades over the standard Carbon 70 are Factory suspension F+R, Ice Tec rotors F+R, AND a 350 hub on the rear. Yes it still has AR rims but despite the fact that these are Race Face's lowest-tiered rim option, these are a much nicer rim than some of the options that exist in the reasonably weighted, 30mm wide category. Contrary to someone's comment below, the spokes and nipples are not junk; they are the very reliable DT Swiss Competition 2.0-1.8 butted spokes with loctited DT Swiss brass nipples. These are solid enough to be re-used / re-laced to a Race Face ARC HD rim once you dent the AR rim past it's useful life.

Reply

ohio
+4 Niels Pete Roggeman Lu Kz Jonas Dodd
Marc Fenigstein  - Dec. 1, 2020, 12:37 p.m.

Great to see a product manager engaging like this, 1:1 with customers. Thanks for the responses and details.

Reply

mhaager2
+1 MuscogeeMasher
Moritz Haager  - Dec. 3, 2020, 12:08 p.m.

I hate to come across as difficult here but I just can’t let this go.  I just can’t get past putting what in the big picture amounts to a relatively crappy wheel set on an almost $9000 bike. I am an Emerg doc. That means 2 things: 1. I have a very good income and 2. I have no business sense so maybe I’m totally out to lunch with my opinions, and the profit margins on these bikes are in fact razor thin. However I still balk at the price of bikes these days. 9K is a LOT of money no matter what income bracket you come from. I don’t think you should have to think about upgrading your wheels soon when you spend that kind of cash. I have personally had, and seen lots of friends, free hubs on these kinds of wheel sets fail, and usually it makes more financial sense to buy a whole new wheel than to rebuild it, which just seems so wasteful. I find it hard to believe that companies can’t make still make a fair profit by using their purchasing power up front and spending a little bit more to ensure the consumer is getting a decent wheel set on a 9k bike. Nobody should get DT Swiss 370 hubs ever. In fact DT Swiss should stop making those hubs at all but thats a different conversation. Suffice it to say I don’t think putting them on a 9K bike is justifiable. 

I worry about the ever increasing prices in this industry. In the last 10-15 years it seems like prices have almost doubled. Its not like peoples incomes have increased at the same rate, making this an unsustainable trend IMO.

Reply

sanesh-iyer
0
Sanesh Iyer  - Dec. 3, 2020, 12:15 p.m.

The real issue is salary stagnation not bike prices. Commodities and inflation have driven up pricing, in addition to feature sets.

You're right, people's salaries haven't gone up but that's not Ken's (or cycling as a whole's) fault. That's a whole other socioeconomic issue.

Reply

MuscogeeMasher
0
MuscogeeMasher  - Dec. 5, 2020, 5:38 p.m.

Thanks for weighing in.  Very nice to see as a consumer.  Putting aside spec, I was surprised at the premium over other similar brands for the frame-only option. Is that an exchange rate issue for me here in the states?

Reply

kraf
+1 MuscogeeMasher
kraf  - Dec. 3, 2020, 9:56 a.m.

I'm not sure about comparisons of similar spec from Norco, Spec, or Trek for example, but last years C50/C70 went for $5600/$7400 with perhaps a somewhat lower spec. An $1100 jump to the 2020 C70 is significant. I have a 2017 Devinci Troy carbon with X01 with high end alloy RF Turbine wheels that retailed for $7600. The same 2020 Troy with full XT and RF Vault/ARC rims runs $7500. This spec is almost identical to the 2020 C70 with a higher end wheelset coming in at $1000 cheaper. I love the new Altitudes, but its seems Rocky is pricing at a premium, or perhaps Devinci is positioned as a value brand. If I credit the brand cachet of Rocky I still would like to have seen a higher end alloy wheelset for the $8500 price.

Reply

Jenkins5
+1 4Runner1
Jenkins5  - Nov. 30, 2020, 8:15 a.m.

Seems to be a trend for all bike companies not just Rocky. Using a component company's lowest end rim on such a high end bike isn't fair to the end consumer or the component company, since you get less than stellar reviews on a softer aluminum sleeved rim....IMHO they could throw on an SLX or Aeffect crank and change the rims to something welded higher end alloy and still make the same amount of profit...

Reply

D_C_
+2 Niels Gage Wright Metacomet 4Runner1
DMVancouver  - Nov. 30, 2020, 8:36 a.m.

Personally, I couldn’t be fussed whether the bike comes with AR or ARC rims. The weight difference is minimal, and I’d kill either after a season.

But give me a decent rear hub to build that new rim onto. Any time I have ran cheaper hubs, it has not worked out well for me. Having a rear hub fail is expensive; not only do you need to get a new hub (since many lower-end hubs are not easily serviceable), you need to get the wheel rebuilt as well. And usually a rear hub failure means walking home.

Sadly, DT 370s on an $8000 bike is increasingly normal.

Reply

LoamtoHome
+1 4Runner1
Jerry Willows  - Nov. 30, 2020, 9:03 a.m.

it's not about weight in regards to AR or ARC rim but the metal and how they are joined. A 9k bike with taxes is going to be 10k really quick. That's why the used bike market is so hot right now.

Reply

D_C_
0
DMVancouver  - Nov. 30, 2020, 9:19 a.m.

@Jerry Willows - it would be interesting to know how much more durable the ARC actually is compared to the AR. In my experience, all rear alloy rims are toast after some time riding them. The only factor I have found to increase longevity is going with a heavier, DH-rated rim. But an alloy rim is a wear item, in my opinion, and I don't mind product managers going with the AR if they need to find a place to save money (though it would also be interesting to know how much it actually saves at the OEM level).

In contrast, replacing a rear hub is expensive enough that I would put it in the 'buy nice or buy twice' category.

Reply

Jenkins5
+1 DMVancouver
Jenkins5  - Nov. 30, 2020, 3:22 p.m.

Higher end rims (like ARC, DT 1700, e13 Plus) are made of welded 6069 aluminum where the lower end rims are typically made of softer sleeved 6061. I've killed an AR rim pretty quickly but have had ARC and e13 Plus last multiple seasons....I agree with your hub comment too though. Should be at least a 350 at this price!

D_C_
0
DMVancouver  - Nov. 30, 2020, 3:43 p.m.

@Jenkins5 - good to know! 

My last bike came with Race Face ARC Offset 35s and they didn't do all that well. After a few months, the rear had several dents. I've had the older Race Face/Easton ARC rims as well, welded but made of 6061, and they dented quite easily too. It's tough to say if the 6069 ARC Offsets were an improvement. Stan's MK3 (6069, welded) rims I've had have also suffered a similar fate. I generally run 26 psi without inserts in the rear, and weigh about 170 lbs. I don't think any of these are bad rims. This is just what happens.

The rims I have had the best luck with are the Chromag BA30 and older Stan's Flow EX, both which are overbuilt with an extra rib in the cross-section, and come at a weight penalty.

tehllama42
+5 Niels 4Runner1 Tim Coleman Graham Driedger MuscogeeMasher
Tehllama42  - Nov. 30, 2020, 9:29 a.m.

I feel like this is a brilliant review, not just because it's a bike I'm extremely interested in, but it showed me exactly why I'd probably be happier rocking my instinct deeper into the next decade than originally planned, because $8k for a bike of this type doesn't sound drastically nicer than throwing $2k of parts at my current ride that is already extremely good, and that's a lot of carbon bits I can throw at what I hae working well already.
That's a price delta that lets me throw carbon cranks at a bike that doesn't need the weight savings.

I do now really want to try the long-shock&mullet approach on my older Instinct to get similar travel figures, and see where that puts me for speed on the same trails.

Reply

Ddean
+3 DMVancouver Timer Graham Driedger
Ddean  - Nov. 30, 2020, 10:38 a.m.

Everything needs to be considered in context. When you shred the Shore like Graham does, parts break.

Great review. Great bike. The wheels would probably be fine outside of BC :)

Reply

Timer
+7 Velocipedestrian 4Runner1 Ddean olaa ManInSteel DMVancouver MuscogeeMasher
Timer  - Nov. 30, 2020, 12:58 p.m.

True, buts its not just the fact that they broke under a hard charging rider. I'ts the fact that every single piece in that wheelset is the cheapest entry-level option in the manufacturers lineup. And to add insult to injury, the cheapest front hub that DT makes was appearently too expensive for this 8.5k bike.

Would a DT EX 1700 (or similar) have lasted longer? Maybe. Would it be worth keeping the hubs and spokes to lace up a new rim instead of throwing away the junk and buying a new wheelset? Definitely.

Sorry for the rant, high end bikes with bad wheels is just a pet peeve of mine.

Reply

D_C_
+1 Deniz Merdano
DMVancouver  - Nov. 30, 2020, 11:45 a.m.

Nice review, Graham! I enjoyed reading that. Sounds like the bike pushed you to send it. Has the confidence carried over to riding your personal bike?

Reply

denomerdano
+3 DMVancouver Tim Coleman Graham Driedger
Deniz Merdano  - Nov. 30, 2020, 1:18 p.m.

Word is that this review was written by proxy, and Graham "over my cold dead hands" Dreidger is hiding in the woods with the Altitude waiting the winter out.

Reply

werewolflotion
+1 4Runner1
werewolflotion  - Nov. 30, 2020, 2:44 p.m.

Beating a dead horse here, but these Fox CSUs and Shimano bite point issues are becoming ridiculous. Known issues that ARE fixable, and with the brakes it's from the get-go and with the fork it's after 2.5 months??? That is absurd and unacceptable year after year after year for products from age-old brands supposedly known for quality. Bike looks fantastic otherwise, Rocky has been killing it.

Reply

Dogl0rd
-1 Jonas Dodd
Dogl0rd  - Nov. 30, 2020, 9:11 p.m.

Is the bite point stuff just the nature of using mineral oil? Do we know the reason?

Reply

Timer
+1 Jonas Dodd
Timer  - Dec. 1, 2020, 2:03 a.m.

Other mineral oil brakes don't have issues like that (e.g. Formula, Magura).

Reply

hece
0
Henrik Martikainen  - Dec. 1, 2020, 12:54 a.m.

I don't think the Shimano RT-66 rotors are stamped? They look machined to me and they are rated for sintered pads. Fine option unless you have the long descends and really need the extra cooling provided by the ice-tech rotors.

Reply

Timer
0
Timer  - Dec. 1, 2020, 2:08 a.m.

I actually prefer solid steel rotors over ice-tech. Not sure if they have fixed it by now, but early ice-tech rotors broke down under extreme stress. The aluminium wasn't heat resistant enough, would become soft and get squeezed out of the rotor.

Reply

sanesh-iyer
0
Sanesh Iyer  - Dec. 3, 2020, 11:34 a.m.

Would love to see photos of this. I've seen delamination before but that was when we were using two Saint Calipers on a single 8in Rotor (axle mounted) a for two wheels on a 10hp 400lb + driver dune buggy . Those were on more modern rotors though.

Reply

sanesh-iyer
+2 Pete Roggeman DadStillRides
Sanesh Iyer  - Dec. 1, 2020, 9:29 p.m.

In defense of cheap wheelsets, that's the one part that doesn't change year over year. I usually put my new shitty wheelsets on my old bikes when I sell them. 

I think the A30 is the model that piques me. For the price of the C70 Coil, you can get an A30, upgrade to a whole bunch of baller parts that don't creak, and build up a hard tail with the leftovers. Two bikes for the price of one. Neither is carbon, but that could be a Pro.

Reply

ohio
0
Marc Fenigstein  - Dec. 3, 2020, 9:15 a.m.

Great find. That A30 seems like a killer bike for the price, whether you leave the parts on or not.

Reply

Please log in to leave a comment.