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My Battle with Elbows (5 Elbow Pads Back to Back) - Oct. 23, 2020, 9:02 a.m.

I’ll be 40 next year and have 2 very young kids. If I get hurt my partner has to shoulder extra child care. I’ve been wearing elbow pads on most rides for a few years and on the gnarlier stuff adding shin guards. I also wear 661 protective shorts and they have saved my hips/pelvis more than once. This year I’ve added upper body protection and a full face for gnarlier stuff. So thanks for the review. I’ve been using the TLD speed elbows which I had to stitch narrower at the top to stay on my scrawny arms but aside from that they’ve held up still. Still I’m looking to replace them soon and will likely get the 7iDP. Appreciate the review.

Plain Parts - Compelling Sentiments - Oct. 16, 2020, 10:37 p.m.

I feel this is more applicable to road components than mtb for obvious reasons. I acquired a bike with 10 speed campagnolo chorus from ‘00 around ‘09. At the time road was still 10 speed. I rode that bike for a while but eventually sold the frame. I’ve rebuilt the shifters and replaced the hoods and they’ve been on a few bikes. They’re currently on an early 80s Reynolds 531 tubed frame from Switzerland, paired with the original chorus rear derailleur. I ride that bike to work a lot, and it’s running 1970s record brake calipers. These brakes were produced with very little change for almost 20 years. The same bike also sports my first edition sram rival 180mm compact crank set in silver and a syncros ti post, a Chris king no logo grip nut headset and dia compe gran comp stem. I’m even using authentic mathauser pads in the Campy holders. I used to pick out all the old centerpull Scott/mathauser pads out of the bins at ocb and cut them shorter to fit the record holders. The pads are probably 40+ years old and I think I’m on my last sets, they still perform better than most new pads.

Min-Maxing North Shore Rubber With The Bontrager G5 - Oct. 12, 2020, 10:27 p.m.

Hmm lots of talk of either DH or cushcore but what about that glowing review on this very site of the new Tannus insert? Has only one NSMB writer tried them? I’m intrigued by their claimed 150g weight, combined with an EXO + that will still be a lot lighter

Park Tool Sliding T-Handle Torx Set - June 17, 2020, 9:01 a.m.

Thanks for this. I immediately wanted the Allen version when these came out and while I’m sure they have a use case I pretty much always teach for my Wera keys since I got them a year ago. I know I don’t need them and after this review my desire has been taken down a notch. I have one black t-25 park p-handle that handles most torn duties and is entirely adequate. I also have master craft ratchet driver and tire bits that works great on rotor bolts.

Park Tool Sliding T-Handle Torx Set - June 17, 2020, 9:01 a.m.

Thanks for this. I immediately wanted the Allen version when these came out and while I’m sure they have a use case I pretty much always teach for my Wera keys since I got them a year ago. I know I don’t need them and after this review my desire has been taken down a notch. I have one black t-25 park p-handle that handles most torn duties and is entirely adequate. I also have master craft ratchet driver and tire bits that works great on rotor bolts.

Close Your Eyes & Cut Your Bars - March 29, 2020, 10:26 a.m.

Bar, like rear center, should be proportional. Most make them in one width with a flex profile to match. When you cut them they become stiffer and assuming the rider is smaller and lighter that is an unfortunate compromise. They should come in more widths to begin with. Being tall, most XLs could be longer still for me and I could probably ride 820 mm bars. I have 780 and 800 on my main bikes now and both feel fine. I notice the difference when I move from one to the other buy there isn't much adaptation. 760 would definitely feel too narrow. My Partner has my old 740mm full width Easton Haven's on her bike. The first thing I did when it arrived with 800mm stock bars was swap to a shorter stem and bars.

Rotor's 12x Cassette Ridden and Reviewed - March 12, 2020, 11:22 a.m.

I live in a dry climate with several trips to the BC coast each year. After every ride I wipe and brush and then lube and wipe. My last 3 bikes have all been sold with the original cassette and a new or newish chain and were running just fine with life left. I realize that if I lived on the coast I might not be so lucky, but modern cassettes last and last. I have GX eagle cassettes on two bikes.

Deviate Cycles Presents The High Pivot Highlander - March 11, 2020, 12:50 p.m.

Alex D, that spreadsheet is nice for someone trying to get seated fit I guess, but it doesn't help someone calculate the effective seat tube angle. I only care about figuring out REAL effective seat tube angles at actual saddle height. It's not easy with the information given by most brands.

Someone give Banshee an award for their new geo charts! Transition should also be applauded for reporting it at an assumed seat height (but it would be nice if they also published what that height is*). Most brands just report it at stack height which isn't very helpful. It also makes them look progressive (ahem, looking at you santa cruz) when in reality they are still on the conservative side. 

*Transition was happy to provide it by email.

Deviate Cycles Presents The High Pivot Highlander - March 6, 2020, 7:51 p.m.

My point is that many brands reporting an effective seat tube angle of 75-76 are reporting it at stack height while the actual seat tube angle is making the effective slacker than reported at real saddle heights. 

So for me, at 835mm of saddle height, I'm slacker than the "effective" most brands are claiming. At my seat height, the effective seat angle of the highlander is actually 76 degrees, whereas on most brands it is slacker than 76. So for a tall dude, that's pretty exciting.

I tried to build a calculator for STA when Effective seat angle at two different stack heights are known. My methods are flawed but...

at 835 mm seat height, a Hightower is around 74.5 degrees, a yeti SB 150 is around 75.5. These bikes both report and effective STA in the XL(or XXL) as steeper than 76 degrees, but they're both slacker than the Highlander. Can you see why I am stoked about the actual seat tube angle being the effective?

Deviate Cycles Presents The High Pivot Highlander - March 6, 2020, 1:24 p.m.

EXACTLY! (the sarcasm doesn't come through the internet) seriously though some of the actual seat tube angles out there are absurd. Look at niner or canyon. If you're tall those bikes will put you way out back. Have the seat tube actually inline is a super nice hard tail (I originally considered some sort of "the way all other bikes have been made for 100 years or something" since this is mostly a FS/modern mtb thing (i'm not a fan of kinked tube hardtails either). The short chainstay fad is partially to blame for this phenomenon as you can see longer travel 29ers sometimes get very slack in the actual, it's aweful. Thankfully short chainstays are going out of style!

2020 YT Jeffsy 29 Pro Race - Out of the Box - March 6, 2020, 10:37 a.m.

Standard 44/56 I believe. Same as my sentinel. I actually have a 1 degree on my work bench now going into the sentinel to steepen it to 65 for a fun experiment so see if it makes it a little more fun on mellower trails.

Deviate Cycles Presents The High Pivot Highlander - March 6, 2020, 9:13 a.m.

Is the Actual and Effective Seat Tube angle THE SAME!? It sure looks it, what a novel concept! I wish more MTBs could be made this way. If it is, the Effective STA for tall riders will be up there with the best of them since most drop below 76 degrees at full extension for tall riders making this an attractive option.

2020 YT Jeffsy 29 Pro Race - Out of the Box - March 4, 2020, 1:35 p.m.

Looking forward to riding impressions. I'd personally choose the Pro version as I think it's better value. Though in 2019 it would have been the pro race for sure. I was thoroughly impressed with packaging and attention to detail when I built up my partners Jeffsy in 2018. The little rubber entry/exit grommets do not stay in place so hopefully the updated ones work better. The nice thing about the head angle being a little off the mark is that it's easily changed by up to 2 degrees with an angleset. Want to keep that steep 77.5 seat tube (yes!) and have a 64.5 degree head angle? No problem, pop a 2 degree angleset in there and you have something that goes toe to toe with the most progressive enduro bikes from the big brands including longer chainstays on the bigger frames. The Jeffsy is still on my short list. As you pointed out the XXL compares with most brands XL, it's a bonus that they have more sizing choice!

2020 Norco Sight – Build Your Ride - Feb. 28, 2020, 9:57 a.m.

Just want to say I was stoked to see this review forthcoming. I'm similar in height to AJ (1cm taller I think) and similarly apey. I'm about 25 lbs heavier (damn dude, you are roadie svelt!). 

Anyway, the sight is the most exciting new bike from a major brand for me. The only other bikes that have me interested are those from Privateer, Pole, Nicoli etc... european brands pushing the geometry envelope. Currently, I'm on an XXL sentinel and it doesn't climb the best. The geometry numbers of these two bikes are very similar with identical reach, head angle and fork offset, but norco pushes the rider further forward (17mm shorter ETT!!!) and extends the chainstays by 10mm. I think this will translate into better climbing traction for tall individuals and I wonder if the further forward position will also make it feel a little more spirited on the climbs. The sentinel can feel bogged down if your shock PSI is not at the higher end of the scale, which has the trade off a bit less planted and stable on the downs. My XL Pole Taiga fatbike has 470mm chainstays and the traction is otherworldly coming off the conventional XC fatbike geometry. This has me convinced that longer chainstays are going to improve climbing for taller riders. My other data point for the benefits of longer chainstays for taller riders is going from a 2015 XXL Instinct BC edition to a 2018 XL Instinct the chainstays got significantly shorter (452mm RC to 436mm) and the 2018 was a far less stable downhill smasher than the 2015 was even though travel numbers and front center numbers were similar.

WTB Verdict 29 x 2.5 Front Tire Reviewed (w Judge Rear) - Feb. 14, 2020, 10:52 a.m.

The side knobs looks like they are already disintegrating in the close up photo. That was my experience with the vigilante I ran for about 8 days of riding in Sedona (yes Sedona is super hard on tires), but I can easily get a season out of a maxxis tire without the knobs decaying like that. Since I can see the decay in your photo I'm still going to look elsewhere, but it maybe that's the cost of performance. I don't know. I'm curious to try some of the new Vittoria offerings.

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