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Nov. 6, 2014, 4:07 p.m. -  AndrewR

#!markdown The recent Dirt 'review' mentioned that the Nomad did not feel balanced front to rear. Whilst I disagree I would say that the bike has a sweet spot and performs like a race car when you are in it and does not feel so 'on point' when you are not. I agree that the body has to be centred and that there has to be weight over the front wheel to get the best out of the bike. I have climbed stuff more easily that I did on my Blur TRc and that thing has a 68 degree headangle (which was consdiered slack in 2012!!). Rider set up is pretty key to getting the most out of it and the correct saddle position for climbing (and some knicks under the shorts) certainly help. I have dropped the stem back to 40mm which makes it decidely direct (almost twitchy) in the steering department and despite the trend towards stupid wide bars on everything (I am 6'2″ and 200 lbs BTW and happily ride 780 mm bars on my V-10.5C) I have just cut mine down to 760 mm and I am far happier all round. I started with the SC 800 mm bars but did not get on with the sweep angle so moved to my old faithfuls, Answer DH 780 Carbon bars and ran them at full width for about six weeks. If I cared about my climb times I might go back to a 50 mm stem. Suspension, Pike and Monarch are quite sensitive to the air pressure, gone are the days of needing 15 psi changes to feel any difference in performance. I am trying to get a shock pump that can accurately deliver and measure 2 psi increments because I believe that you can feel it especially in the forks. My main gripe is that I think that suspension on an advanced bike should have seperate LSC and HSC so that the bike can be tuned for rider input and trail input. The rebound knobs on the RS stuff also have very vague detents. That said the Pike is delivering near BOS levels of plushness and the Monarch has amazing small bump compliance and works well in the mid travel. On pedalling this bad boy one must remember to keep momentum (helped by the 650B wheelset) or to half pedal because even with 170 mm cranks you are going to whack a thing or two on a VPP bike, not as often as on the Blur TRc but it still happens and luckily I view pedal bearings as an expense/ wear and tear item. Finally ENVE wheels (well they don't have to be ENVE but let's say well built carbon wheelset with a decent inner rim width), a total game changer. No arguments at all about how good they are and how well they handle. I hope more people get to enjoy riding a Nomad. Happy trails.

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