Trek had a massive presence at the Outdoor Demo, not only with some big tents and a vending machine but also a huge number of demo bikes for the curious to try. By the looks of the lineup the 6" travel Remedy was by far the most sought after, and for good reason: the mid-travel platforms seem to be everyone's cup of tea lately. We pulled some strings and bypassed the line to get ourselves a closer look at their top end rig, the Remedy 9.
Check out the HD video inside explaining the Remedy's unique features!
2009 Trek Remedy 9
Trek's Michael Browne talks us through the unique features on their 2009 Remedy 9 "every mountain" bike!
Even with the mild heatstroke courtesy of Bootleg Canyon I still managed to take note of how organic the 6" travel Trek looks. I know, it's just a bicycle frame, a tool made to do a job (and do it well hopefully), but I couldn't help appreciating this steed's lines more than most. Each frame tube seems to come together with it's mate at just the right angle as to make it look like it was meant to be. I'd be the first to admit that I should only be lusting after the opposite sex with this amount of enthusiasm, but I'm a man of little self control and the Remedy is striking.
It's in the details.....
The Remedy platform takes advantage of a few neat features, the first being an E2 headtube design. While not entirely new to bicycles, it's actually trickle down goodness from their Madone road frame, it is the first time it's being used on mountain bikes. E2 headtube's have a dramatic hourglass profile, tapering from accepting 1.5" steerer tubes at the lower end to the traditional 1.125" steerer tubes at the top. The goal is all the precision of the bigger tube size, but with non of the stem compatibility issues or weight gains. Before you moan about another new standard, keep in mind that regular 1.125" forks can also be used without any hassle.
Lighter, stiffer, and stronger are every bike companies goals as far as performance is concerned. With it's single piece design (well, it's two pieces welded together, really) it makes do without any bolt on cross members that add weight and complexity.
Trek used bearings with super-special long inner races in certain pivots. Why? Because then when I take it all apart I don't loose the teeny tiny washers that would be hiding in there otherwise.
What can ABP do for you? A lot according to Trek. I for one was convinced that there couldn't be anything new and ground breaking design-wise in full suspension bikes left to come up with. Leave it to a team of trained engineers and suspension wizards to prove me wrong!
ABP takes the pivot which would usually be on the chainstay or seatstay, and places it directly around the axle itself. The intentions are to limit the change of distance between the caliper and rotor as the suspension cycles. Trek is claiming that "ABP allows the brake caliper to maintains a near constant relationship to the disc rotor, which creates less suspension stiffening under braking loads." In simpler terms it should mean that braking has very little effect on the Remedy's suspension action.
I've heard a load of questions about the Remedy, with most of them concerning the ABP system. No, there is no special hub needed. It uses a standard 135 mm quick release hub. The single proprietary part is the extra long QR skewer. The skewer does not hold anything together, just your wheel into the frame like normal.
No funny abbreviations with this one, pretty self explanatory. The Fox RP23 shock is not mounted rigidly to the front triangle, but to the EVO link at the top end and a small extension on the chainstay on the bottom end. This idea is not entirely new to pedal bikes, and actually dates back to the '80s with Suzuki dirt bikes.
There are some real advantages to designing a suspension bike this way. One big advantage is being able to better tune the bike suspension rate due to now having two places to do it, the EVO link and the lower shock mount. Trek has built a slight falling rate into the Remedy's linkage that when coupled with the the Fox RP23 XV's larger than normal air can is claimed to give up that elusive bottomless feel to the bikes travel. Not having one end of the shock bolted rigidly to the frame also means that the front triangle can be built a bit lighter without having to worry as much about hard bottoming forces being fed right into the main triangle.
It's amazing to me the amount of premium bikes out there that still use hardware store nuts and bolts to hold everything together, both for pivots and shock mounting. While it may not affect how the bike performs, you surely deserve more when these these things cost so much to begin with. It's nice to see more and more companies, especially the big ones, finishing off their frames with some nice hardware.
Tapered aluminum main pivot axles. Note the torque numbers on each nut or bolt.
At a hair over 28 lbs. and with 6" of travel the new Remedy 9 looks like a very fun bike. In fact, I know it is as I've spent the last 3 months flogging a custom built Remedy on my home trails. After I recover from Las Vegas you'll be able to read about my build and what I think of the Remedy in a long-term review. Stay tuned....
I was also lucky enough to be able to ride the a Remedy at their Mexico based bike launch (I know, it's a hard life....) You can read about it in both parts, HERE and HERE.
Looking for more info on the Remedy and other models? Head to Trek's website for all the details.