Put your hand up if you remember those wild Rotec downhill bikes that were once raced by Eric Carter, among others, from back in the day. With their long swingarm that pivoted around the bottom bracket shell, moto-link style rear suspension, and tiny down tube paired with a massive top tube, they were unlike anything out there at the time. Those bikes and the Rotec name didn't stick around, though, and things moved on without them.
New ownership in 2001 saw Rotec show a few new designs over the years, including the RL9, a downhill sled that used the Lawwill suspension layout, but it's only now that the Washington-based company looks to be on the rise again.
The new bike that they're hoping to ride back into relevance is the 2018 Revert 5.o, a short-travel machine penned with enduro and gravity riding in mind. Rotec says that it's designed to be a "simple, lightweight gravity influenced frame with hydroformed 6061 tubing,'' and a chip at the rearward shock mount can be flipped to have the Revert 5.o deliver either four or five-inches of travel.
Rotec's bikes were well known for their concentric bottom bracket pivot, and that continues on the Revert 5.o, although they're now calling it "Shared Pivot Technology.'' The single pivot layout is all about simplicity, it seems, and Rotec claims that it also delivers an "outstandingly stiff rear end." And speaking of rear ends, the 142mm wide sliding dropouts play nice with both 27.5'' and 26'' wheels, and it can even be setup as a single-speed (without the need for a spring-loaded tensioner) due to the concentric bottom bracket pivot as there's zero chain growth.
The frame is ready for an internally routed dropper post, an ISCG 05 chain guide, and it sports a threaded bottom bracket shell. Rotec will offer two sizes: a medium with a 381mm long seat tube and 423mm reach, and a large that has a 406mm seat tube and 448mm reach. You can get a Revert 5.o frame sans shock for $1,499 USD, or pay $1,799 USD to get one with a DVO Topaz shock.
Rotec also had their downhill rig, the Lawwill Nine, on display in their booth. While not new, the Nine is certainly worthy of a second look. The bike's Lawwill rear suspension delivers, you guessed it, nine-inches of travel, via a DVO shock that's driven directly off the swingarm. Of course, it also pivots concentrically around the bottom bracket, but the rear axle is attached to an upright rather than to the swingarm, and the shock is compressed from both ends as well.
The Lawwill Nine can accept either 27.5'' or 29'' wheels thanks to adjustable geometry, and it has a 63-degree head angle and 343mm bottom bracket height.