School's In on Cypress

Mar 11, 2005
by Tyler Maine  
A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of getting my ass handed to me on Cypress while riding with Dan of On Top bike shop and Steve Mitchell of Banshee bikes. Through out the day we rode trails like Pre-Reaper, Paul Hogan, Fire Hose and Family Guy. The beauty of these trails is the lack of, man made stunts, but the abundance of natural, sick terrain that kept you on your toes and over your bars. (well me at least).I myself ride a hard tail and believe that, that bike can be ridden any where, well this is true, but I also know how much more your body loves you at the end of the day on a big bike. Since I was the only H/T in our group I started to feel it by the second run. This feeling of lagging behind led me to check out what my riding partners were running these days. There were 5 of us on this outing, but 3 of us weren’t LOCO. So I took to inspecting the 2 local’s rides and this is what I came up with.

Dan’s Machine:
-2005 Be One Team DH with all the fixings:
-’04 Dorado, System 3 MRP chain guide, Hope Mono Ti-6 brakes, Bones Cranks, Mavic Tubeless rims with Michelin rubber and SRAM drive train.

Steve’s New Toy:
-2005 Banshee Scream with bits from all the companies he’s now pedaling:
-’05 Boxxer Team, System 3 MRP chain guide, Hope Mono Ti-6 Brakes and a SRAM set up too.

So you probably noticed the trend between these two bikes already as did I. I went to Steve and asked him to give me a run down on the components and why I was seeing more set ups like his and Dan’s. First he pointed out that he too used to ride a H/T, but that was years ago and he’s just smarter than that now. Also that he does regularly ride his Block 8 Journeyman, but not on the trails we were sessioning today.

“Here are a few words on some of the products we talked about. These are sort of new highlight products that stand out in the ‘05 lines."

MRP system 3

The system 3 is a new chain tension device from MRP that is aimed at the free ride market. A fully closed in single ring set up that accommodates a smaller ring and more ground clearance than a "World Cup". This is for versatility in terrain other than just the race course. The system will fit almost any bike, whether you have an upper or lower swing arm and it comes with an ISCG mount or it can be installed on a BB with an adapter. The best feature is the cost savings over other models...the System 3 retail is $270CDN. With all the same quality machined aluminum and sealed bearing rollers as the rest of the MRP line. Watch for a clear poly and carbon model next.

HOPE Mono TI6 disk brakes

The mono TI6 is the only 6 piston mountain bike brake on the market. Not only does it look totally bad ass with its machined, anodized black, 1 piece caliper and floating aluminum/stainless steel rotors. But the power, modulation, and adjustably make this brake one of the easiest to use. Where's the Titanium at? The pistons in these brakes are made of Ti, not only for light weight, but the heat insulating qualities of the TI matched with the large surface area of the 6 piston brake pad keep this brake cool on the long descents. That means no brake pump! Also new for '05 is the option of hope steel braided cables. These brakes are the ultimate in braking front or rear. Some local pros are running a TI 6 in the front and a hope mono M4 in the rear, stating that it gives a bit more grab in the rear. Decide for yourself, retail for a TI 6 is $570CDN or M4 for $450CDN. Steve Peat won on em, check out

BANSHEE scream

The Scream is Banshee's flagship bike. The original long travel "big drop" free ride bike it comes new and improved for '05. With their trademark kegger head tube, cold forged incorporated bb/rear pivot/ ISCG mount, and shock mount, an internal I beam inside the rear chain stays and seat stays, and with 8 inches of rear travel this bike is solid and smooth! There is 3 travel settings and 3 wheelbase settings which makes this a very versatile bike as well. Banshee will customize your order with whatever rear shock you want or whatever component package if you choose a full build. Check out

Well I’d like to thank Steve and Dan for guiding Radek, Mical and myself around that day. There’s nothing like good trails and good friends.

Happy Trails,


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