|Like most dropper seat posts, the Reverb uses an air spring to bring it back up when you need to pedal, and RockShox says that you shouldn't run it with more than 250 PSI. The Reverb doesn't need to be run at maximum pressure, though, and lowering it will make it easier for lighter riders to drop their seat out of the way. You can go down to 200 PSI without any issues, which will make a big difference. Don't forget that lower air pressure means slower rebound as well. The easiest compressing dropper post that I've spent time on is FOX's D.O.S.S., which may be worth looking at if lowering your Reverb's spring pressure doesn't make a large enough difference for your son. The D.O.S.S. requires very low air pressure - just 25 PSI at max, but I've used mine with well under 15 PSI. Keep lowering the pressure until it doesn't return, then add 2 PSI with a shock pump until it comes back up again. The D.O.S.S. uses a retracting keyway design and ball bearing internals, which also helps matters. It is a bit heavier than the Reverb, though, and features three set travel positions rather than the infinite adjustment of the Reverb. - Mike Levy|
| It is possible to ride fast and hit technical stuff on a hardtail, but whether it will make you a better rider can be argued both ways. Six months or a year on a single speed, however, will definitely up your game. Single speeds force you to use and to conserve momentum, and they teach you how much energy you waste dragging the brakes everywhere - so a summer on an SS will make you faster on every kind of bike. |
If you ride road bikes, single speeds will feel more natural, because you will be out of the saddle more often and you'll climb based upon heart rate and strength, not a fixed RPM. Sometimes you'll be at 90 rpm and often, as low as 50 rpm, so you need to be smooth and efficient on the pedals. But, it can wreck your knees if you don't ease into it. Start with lower gearing than you think you'll need and then work up to where your friends are over the summer.
I understand the simplicity of the Superfly's rigid fork, but I don't subscribe. Most of your speed will come from not hitting the brakes, especially down techy sections, G-outs and into turns - it won't come from a throwback fork or pushing a taller gear. So, choose a single speed with a capable suspension fork and get tires that grip in the corners. Hood River trails are a perfect place to ride SS bikes. Enjoy the pain and remember to keep your fingers on the grips. - RC
|Your question is one that many riders will soon be confronting now that the beginning of the lift-served bike season is almost here. The Process 153 is certainly stout enough to handle the occasional day in the bike park, although it might take you a couple laps to get accustomed to the feeling of riding a shorter travel bike compared to a slack DH sled with loads of travel. Other than that, the components on both models of the Process are capable of withstanding the punishments of bike park riding, although be prepared to go through brake pads, tires, and possibly rims quicker than you would riding on your local trails - bike parks are hard on all bikes, no matter how much travel they have. If you're looking to turn the Process 153 into even more of a DH machine, I'd recommend swapping out the stock RockShox Monarch rear shock for a Vivid Air (for reference, it takes a 200x57mm, M/M tune). That switch gives the bike a more bottomless feel, perfect for taking the edge off those brake bumps and choppy sections of trail. - Mike Kazimer|
|It all boils down to rubber compound. If you ride with flat pedals, there's nothing that really comes close, grip-wise. Vans had a decent offering a few years ago with their Gravel shoes, but they appear to be no longer in production. Giro have some good flat shoes with a Vibram sole, but if you're after maximum grip, Five Ten take the win every time. You're right about decent pedals, but once you stamp down a fresh sole of Stealth Rubber onto a grippy pedal, you'll probably never use anything else. Five Ten offer a range of shoes for most tastes and needs. - Paul Aston|
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