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5 Products I Loved in 2021: Mike Levy

Dec 11, 2021 at 15:45
by Mike Levy  
As 2021 comes to a close, it's time once again to take a look back at the products that stood out above the rest. The Pinkbike Awards, which are decided by a panel of editors, are on the way, but in the meantime, you'll also be able to read about our personal favorites and some of the items that left a positive impression on each of us. The concept was borrowed from our colleagues over at CyclingTips - you can read their lists here.




Flight Attendant and the Future

It'd be much easier, and definitely more agreeable, for me to type out some virtuous reasons why I don't want electronics on my mountain bike. Maybe I'd preach that I just like to pedal my $13,000 carbon fiber e-machine with a clunky motor and suspension that has more dials than a nuclear submarine while tracking the ride on my iPhone via GPS satellites to just, like, you know, get away from it all, man. I mean, nothing beats leaving modern conveniences behind for a peaceful e-ride in the bosom of Mother Nature, right? Or maybe that my bike, which currently requires absolutely zero maintenance and always runs perfectly, would be instantly sullied by a 25-gram battery that needs to be recharged every few weeks.

But part of my job is to think about what might happen in the future, which is where gets interesting, especially when talking about RockShox's automatically-adjusting Flight Attendant suspension system. By improving pedaling performance with added compression damping, but also defaulting to a fully open-mode when the trail points down, Flight Attendant delivers even more versatility to enduro and long-travel trail bikes that were already becoming crazy well-rounded. And sure, that might not matter to a lot of riders in a lot of places where efficiency isn't even on their minds, especially if they're on 170mm bikes, but it's still a factor for many other people.


Flight Attendant forks and shocks are essentially normal units but with the Control and Motor Modules attached to them. That means they can be serviced on as per usual, be it some quick love in the garage or deeper maintenance.


I can't help myself from wondering what an enduro race bike designed with Flight Attendant in mind would perform like. I'm convinced that a big part of the Grim Donut's speed is how little anti-squat the bike uses, allowing it to have what feels like an ungodly amount of traction. Pop? Not so much, but strap in for a wild ride. Now just imagine that a bike can descend that well but also pedal like an efficient, 130mm trail bike? It's early days, but it might be possible.

There are some electronics that make zero sense to me, just like there are a bunch of normal components that make no sense to me, and I could do without the dumb apps and blinking lights, but it's shortsighted to take a sanctimonious stand against batteries. Especially if you ride e-bikes. Flight Attendant was one of my favorites of 2021 not just how it performs now, but what it could do for us in a few years' time.

Price: TBD / Currently OE-only
More information: Video: Flight Attendant - RockShox's Self-Adjusting Computer-Controlled Suspension






A Bunch of Short-Travel Bikes

Put your hand up if you've heard, and especially if you've said, ''I'd hit this if I was on a big bike!'' Yeah, same here. But with bikes like Rocky Mountain's new Element, Trek's Top Fuel, as well as the Epic EVO, Spur, Spark, and a handful of others, that excuse just isn't going to fly anymore. There are a bunch of reasons for this that I'm sure you already know but that I'm going to list out regardless to make this blurb a bit longer; better suspension (if you have less, it better be good), wheels and tires (lighter, wider, stronger), longer drop seatposts (more party), better manufacturing, and something called ''geometry'' that's apparently a factor as well.


Two completely different approaches, but both the Blur TR and Element are overly capable in their own ways.


I've been riding short-travel bikes like an idiot for a long, long time, and all I know is that I'm having fewer crashes but going faster, taking more chances, and there's definitely way more laughter. The only bummer about all this is that the reason for downcountry existing at all - ''I'd hit this if I was on a big bike!'' - isn't true anymore. Does anyone have some new excuses?

Price: A lot of money
More information: Video: Top Fuel vs Element vs Jet9 vs Trance 29 vs Blur TR vs Lux Trail - Field Test Roundtable






We Are One

I haven't pedaled the Arrival more than a few hundred feet, but I don't need to in order to be a fan of the Canadian company and the stuff they make... which they actually make in-house in Kamloops, BC. Don't get me wrong as there's certainly nothing wrong with sourcing parts and labor elsewhere - that's a different conversation - but it's also very cool to see a local-ish (they're just a few hours up the road) company start from scratch and end up manufacturing their own carbon fiber frames.


We Are One Composites Arrival
We Are One Composites Arrival
The Canadian-made carbon frame is gorgeous.


Henry and Matt's conclusion from the summer Field Test was that it's a fun, efficient bike that also happens to be quite the looker. There aren't many out there and they're not exactly inexpensive, but the Arrival sounds like it's an impressive all-around 150mm-travel machine, and you can bet that We Are One is already thinking about what's next. Would you like to see their next bike have more or less travel?

Price: $8,899 USD (as tested)
More information: Field Test: 2022 We Are One Arrival - Efficient & Effective







Less Expensive Bikes

There's always a lot of talk about how expensive our sport is, but sometimes I feel like that's a bit misdirected and probably influenced by how many pricey bikes get reviewed by us and other websites. Yes, bikes and gear can cost an outrageous amount of money, and you'll have no problem spending ten grand if that's what you want to do. There's also no getting around the fact that mountain biking requires, at minimum, a mountain bike, and mountain bikes are just toys that cost money. They're not essential and not everyone will be able to own a mountain bike, but everyone can't own a jet ski either... But our last Value Field Trip reminded me, yet again, that you certainly don't have to spend a lot of money to have a lot of fun.


Calibre Bossnut review photo by Anthony Smith
There are more capable and far more expensive bikes than the Stoic and Bossnut, but that doesn't matter if you just want to go mountain biking.


What is good, though, is that you can probably get a mountain bike for far less money than you'd think by only reading our silly reviews of five-digit hyper-bikes. Once I climbed down from my high horse, I realized that you can find yourself a brand new ride for around $1,000 USD that's literally far better and more capable than what we were riding only five years ago. Okay, maybe seven or eight years, but my point is that it doesn't matter. That's still a lot of money, but you could spend even less by digging into the buy&sell and picking up an older 26" wheeled bike and knowing how to do your own repairs. I'm pretty sure that mountain biking was fun before dropper posts were everywhere, it was fun before we could afford rear-suspension, and it was still fun when our cantilever brakes tried in vain to clamp down on skinny aluminum rims with 2" wide tires.

Mountain biking doesn't have to be expensive. If you really want to do it, find yourself an older, inexpensive bike, then turn off the internet and stop consuming media from Pinkbike; stop reading reviews of $1,500 forks, $700 derailleurs, and computer-controlled suspension that some idiot keeps going on about, stop wondering if wider rims and $130 tires will make you faster, and forget about the latest geometry and dropper posts with three-feet of travel. That stuff is great if you can afford it, but don't let your lack of funds keep you from enjoying riding a bike - any old bike - in the forest.

You can spend a lot of money to go mountain biking if you want, or you can spend a lot less and still really enjoy it.

Price: $500 and up
More information: Video: Welcome to the 2021 Pinkbike Value Bikes Field Trip






The Grim Donut 2

I'm sitting on my shop couch while writing this, feet up on a stool and with Bob Seger playing softly in the background while a wild-looking bike hangs from the repair stand. It's comically long, liable to tip over at anything below 20kph, and pedals worse than an old Rotec with a blown shock. But it's real and we (with help from Pivot) made it even though it was never supposed to work. Now it looks like a kinda-production-ready thing using a dual-link layout that pedals like absolute shit. Thankfully, we also have a set of links designed by an actual engineer to fix that and that'll also let us do some back-to-back testing to see if the Donut's lack of anti-squat was a factor in its speed.

The latest Donut even holds a water bottle and, in an industry-first, there's an optional 'Climb Switch' feature that promises to erase those annoying uphills from your short-term memory.

Stay tuned for more Donut in 2022.

Price: Your dignity on every single climb
More information: Spotted: New Grim Donut Prototype?





199 Comments

  • 490 37
 Not a single gravel or e-bike on the list, Mike?!? I'm taking notes for your performance review here...

Be safe be well,
Incognito Robin
  • 88 19
 Yea and it was refreshing to not hear about another E-Bike..
  • 54 0
 Royalties for "Downcounty" would have had him covered for life, but I suppose "Pinkers" has gained some traction to supplement his hobby of airbag-less smoke machines while still working for the MAN.
  • 15 13
 @Three6ty: Isn’t any bicycle that has a battery powered something or another an E-Bike? Such as E- suspension, E-shifting and E-seatpost.
  • 27 11
 @Kootbiker: YEP I hate all of it! Smile
  • 30 0
 @Whatajohnny: "airbag-less smoke machines" LOL This is accurate tho
  • 31 0
 @Three6ty: I don't write about those things Wink
  • 5 0
 @mikelevy: RESPEKT!!!
  • 4 1
 notice the the headline is past tense "loved" meaning he has thrown all this yatta aside and moved on to his next flame.... guessing the next article will be "5 things I still love"
  • 34 0
 @thinkbike: "5 Things I'm Bored With"
  • 1 4
 @mikelevy: couldn't you list the Grim Donut as 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5?
Big Grin
  • 3 2
 @Three6ty: Cheer up it’s almost Xmas.
  • 2 0
 @Kootbiker: haha i do feel a little like the Grinch.
  • 6 16
flag warmerdamj (Dec 13, 2021 at 15:51) (Below Threshold)
 What does Incognito Robin mean?
  • 4 0
 @Three6ty: Did you type this on your typewriter?
  • 3 0
 @merlin33: smoke signals
  • 1 1
 CONSIDERABLE CONSIDERATIONS
  • 15 0
 @warmerdamj: No one knows what it means, but its provocative.
  • 2 11
flag Allen82 (Dec 13, 2021 at 22:45) (Below Threshold)
 @warmerdamj:

An excuse to be annoying
  • 1 0
 No BMX bikes...
  • 2 0
 @mikelevy: 5 things I’m bored with is a *wonderful* idea
  • 165 5
 "If you really want to do it, find yourself an older, inexpensive bike, then turn off the internet and stop consuming media from Pinkbike; stop reading reviews of $1,500 forks, $700 derailleurs, and computer-controlled suspension that some idiot keeps going on about, stop wondering if wider rims and $130 tires will make you faster, and forget about the latest geometry and dropper posts with three-feet of travel."

One hell of a sentence and deserves all the upvotes!
  • 14 0
 This article actually had some really great prose - pretty inspired bike / bike culture commentary. That opening paragraph threw shade in alllll the right places. More like this, please!
  • 2 1
 @Lokirides: I gave an upvote but I don't know if this statement is true. It might be true if you are ok to ride some oldschool geo 26 hardtail but anything that won't hold you back when you are riding tralis with friends is way over 1000€ currently.
  • 6 1
 @KalkhoffKiller: You gotta forget about being held back to play this game tho
  • 3 1
 @KalkhoffKiller: if you won’t ride because you’re held back by 26” or steep angles, you’re not being held back by the bike…
  • 1 0
 If I don't buy an $816 dropper post, how will I know I'm alive?
  • 92 0
 Cheap bike related.

Remember the Top Gear episode where they were supposed to test the new Nissan Pixo for 10k pounds or so (the cheapest new car available) and instead they bought a used BMW and a Merc for the same money and tested them instead?

Would be interesting to see what kind of used bike from 10 years ago or so you can find for the same average price of the upcoming Value Bike Test and throw that in the mix.
  • 54 0
 10 years! bike depreciation only needs 3 years
  • 18 0
 @senorbanana: could go 3, 5 and 10 and see what you get!
  • 1 0
 Anybody want to buy my 2011 SJ evo? If the new 27.5 wheel bikes are "fun bikes" then how bout my 26! It still rips. $5k ten years ago and it still performs pretty well.
  • 1 0
 @Evo6: what colours it ?
  • 5 0
 Reminds me of Street and Strip Supercar in the 1980s. Their “tests” of production cars would include tips on cheap mods to get an extra second (or more) in the 1/4 mile. I recall an article where they got a firebird into the 14s. Same for Pinkbike: test bikes but offer ideas for what small/inexpensive might be done to make a production bike better. And describe the pre/post results of the mods.
www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/street-strip-supercar-1988-oct-vol1-77322246
  • 3 0
 @nrloewen: totally. Like last spring the Rockshox 35 Silver was a problem on at least two of the bikes. How would they perform with a Revelation or a Z2 instead?
  • 2 0
 I agree, I built up a 2005 santa cruz nomad with same newer parts and I prefer riding it to my more modern bike
  • 2 0
 They do that on Enduro MTB with the “Tuning Tips” section
  • 1 0
 @senorbanana: 3 years?! I admire your utmost positive outlook but down here it's barely a year.
  • 2 0
 @Andykmn: or ask “what could improve the RS 35 silver?” Maybe change the oil or seals or modify/drill a passage or drop in a different damper… what small mods could take that fork to the next level? Or how to compensate for it…? Perhaps gains from different tire/insert combo would offset some aspect of the fork (Eg set the fork firm while letting wheel care for small bumps…?)
  • 64 2
 Now that there are 2 iterations, are they the Grim Deeznuts??
  • 18 0
 Got em
  • 47 1
 "Does anyone have some new excuses?"
Yes. I live in USA and don't have health insurance.
  • 7 0
 I was thinking "Warranty Voided due to abuse"
  • 15 0
 I have certainly had the cost of a hospital visit plus the lost wages from an injury on my mind more than once as I've rolled around a big feature. I'd love to challenge myself more but I am the primary income earner in my household and I need to keep the lights on and food on the table.
  • 3 2
 @BlackVR: just move. Literally anywhere else. You can enjoy riding (and life) without that worry on your back!
  • 2 1
 @bishopsmike: so where is this magical place where u can get cut-out of work-and have no worries about your bills(assuming we're not wealthy)
  • 6 0
 @jrocksdh: most developed countries (I know, they must sound magical).

Injured: medical care is covered
Injured seriously enough that you end up missing work: take paid sick days, or paid vacation days, or short term disability, etc.

Honestly just saying that nobody I've ever ridden with at any point in time over the past 30+ years of riding has had "cost of a hospital visit plus the lost wages from an injury" on their mind when looking at a difficult feature. Ever.

And that's a nice thing.
  • 1 0
 @bishopsmike: Must be nice, I have several friends that have these thoughts all the time. It is not so much the medical coverage, as they all have insurance, but when you are your company being unable to perform your work is very hard on you and your staff financially.
  • 3 0
 @jeremystclair: You're right, I didn't consider loss of income if you're self-employed or a gig worker.
  • 3 0
 @jrocksdh: South Africa.
I have medical insurance, so I can go to private hospitals, short term job insurance, so if I can't work for a while my salary is covered and life insurance for the worst case scenario. I'm self employed, so I pay for these myself. My only worry is actually getting hurt, because that sucks, and not seeing my kids grow up, that will also suck.
Maybe our insurance industry is just more mature than the American insurance industry?
  • 1 0
 @mrtoodles: same thing as not having health insurance in the us
  • 2 0
 @bishopsmike: I've honestly looked. Unfortunately emigration is fairly expensive and not actually that easy.
  • 34 0
 why do you only get 5 products vs. kazimer's 10? is he twice as good at skinnies?
  • 93 0
 Nah, @mikelevy is just twice as lazy. I am way better at skinnies, though.
  • 18 0
 @mikekazimer: Mike vs Mike skinny battle? Alternate version involves donut consumption penalties for dabbing or falling off.
  • 65 0
 @garrettstories: I don't do skinnies unless they're not skinny.
  • 5 1
 @mikelevy: we thought you were a donut.. turns out you're a puff pastry?! say it ain't so
  • 14 0
 TIL Levy likes 'em thicc.
  • 6 0
 @mikelevy: so, you um.. do fatties?
  • 2 0
 @mikekazimer: @mikelevy is getting a higher comment-to-loved-product ratio than you. He may be lazier, but he's also more efficient!
  • 26 0
 "I'm convinced that a big part of the Grim Donut's speed is how little anti-squat the bike uses, allowing it to have what feels like an ungodly amount of traction" - this seems to be a persistent internet myth. If you're coasting, anti-squat has little or nothing to do with traction or the ability of the suspension to absorb bumps. Chain pull has some effect if you lock the back wheel but other than that the differences in axle path between say 0% and 100% anti-squat are actually miniscule, and anti squat has no effect on leverage/wheel rate. If you change the links on a short link bike, you're liable to change the leverage/wheel rate with an effect on the ride quality that is greater than that of the change in anti-squat.
  • 5 0
 got em
  • 5 0
 If only there was a nationally renowned suspension shop nearby they could consult on the Donut.
  • 14 0
 Laughs plus an interesting point of view - classic Levy content. The potential of flight attendant, the awesomeness of We Are One, and recommending that folks ignore you are all great things to highlight. Wink
  • 11 1
 "... they can be serviced on as per usual"

For some reason I can't stand the phrase "as per." Compared to that pleonasm, "serviced on" is totally chill.

"As per my previous email" was apparently voted one of the most annoying things ever written.
  • 14 0
 Attached, please find my agreement.
  • 9 0
 Sounds like you're over-exaggerating, @zeeman. As per this Mirriam Webster entry "as per" is a perfectly fine expression www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/as%20per. They are not coequals, but the honest truth is that the meaning of "as per" is in close proximity to if not an exact replica of "according to". Also, pleonasms are a free gift to feed one's linguistic curiosity.
  • 10 0
 Is “as per” more or less annoying than people who don’t read emails and keep asking the same (often off base) questions?

I’m voting “less”
  • 8 0
 Sorry, live valve and flight attendant and just bad. Unpredictable complex and expensive suspension is going in the opposite direction it needs to. Properly designed short travel bikes are sick and long overdue. Fast XC bikes that can ride all the double black lines with skill are just the best. Making bikes more reliable, serviceable, longer lasting and affordable should be the main thing pushed IMO. Good design, geo, reliable brakes, gears and suspension shouldn’t be costly or hard to maintain.
  • 9 1
 " but you could spend even less by digging into the buy&sell and picking up an older 26" wheeled bike and..."

Imma have to stop you right there. Have you SEEN the 26" offerings? I just spent two miserable years trying to source good parts for mine and those mof'ers are easily the most delusional on any bike forum in terms of used market valuation... and now I would like nothing more than that size wheel to die off like everyone else so whatever chode hoarding all the Mavic Crossmax's can get f*cked, probably for the first time since 2006.
  • 2 1
 Sorry to tell you. We are more than two months after the last production date of 26" Xmaxes, so it is fair to assume they have all died anyway.
  • 7 0
 Sweet! Levy loves batteries on bikes, that means in a year or two axs and flight attendant will have gone the way of plus size tires and trust forks, right? Only joking, well mostly joking.
  • 11 0
 I still love the Trust fork I have, but it just doesn't absorb bumps well enough for me to use it in Squamish haha
  • 9 0
 am I stupid enough to buy the GD2 sight unseen? ... yes
  • 4 0
 I'm gonna wait for the GD3 with the linkage bottom bracket.
  • 1 0
 It's screaming for a SID...
  • 10 1
 Bob Seger???

Everything I know is wrong. Frown
  • 12 3
 Right? It kills me every time - Seger is definitely not on my list of things I love.
  • 3 0
 @mikekazimer: does not fit the tats, alien fascination, mini love and all around Levy-ness that we have grown to know and (maybe) love....
  • 15 0
 I heard Mike Levy likes to ride against the wind
  • 3 0
 @mikekazimer: what? Your Mdou Moctar/Bob Seger Venn diagram doesn’t intersect?
  • 5 0
 Levy has always been running against the wind
  • 57 0
 @mikekazimer: On a lone and lonesome highway east of Vancouver, you can listen to the engine moaning out it's one note song, you can think about Tim Hortons, or the bike you rode the day before. But your thoughts will soon be wanderin'
The way they always do
When you're ridin' Down Country
And there's no double-doubles for you
And you don't feel much like ridin'
because 2 piston brakes are poo
  • 9 0
 @nzandyb: Amazing
  • 4 0
 @VtVolk: Yet he's still the same...
  • 6 0
 @MtbSince84: we need to turn the page and move on here
  • 1 0
 Bob Seger can be heard in many mechanics stations in the Seattle area. First 3 albums plus Turn The Page.
  • 2 0
 This caught my attention too! But for the good! I fuckin LOVE Bob Seger, glad Levy shares the same appreciation for good tunes!
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer: I had assumed the inclusion of that reference was the result of a lost bet.
  • 1 0
 @nzandyb: Did anyone else hear the Metallica version in their head while reading this?!
  • 1 0
 @bluemonkeywrench: As an ode to @mikelevy the lack of saxophone in the Metallica version just won't do.
Levy is clearly a master of three things: contentious MTB opinions, swooning the ladies with his tasteful collection of saxophone-featuring vinyl, and convincing said ladies that his taste in automobiles is necessary to compensate for his other 'gifts'.
  • 1 0
 @nzandyb: I literally sang your comment. If this doesn't get gold on the next podcast...
  • 9 0
 But did he like the end of the F1 season ???
  • 38 2
 Nope, that was a bummer how the end of the race was handled. I don't mind that Max won - he's a beast - but the FIA should be embarrassed by that manufactured ending. I know a lot of newer fans loved it, and I can't argue with how exciting it was, but as someone who is a fan of car racing, that was unacceptable and embarrassing for the sport as a whole. Then again, I guess everyone's talking about it, so what do I know.
  • 3 0
 @mikelevy: here's to hoping the FIA gets it together for 2022
  • 23 1
 @focofox37: I should add that Micahel Masi just wanted to finish under green instead of yellow flags, which is commendable, but the cost for Saudi Arabia's contrived ending is, at least for me and many others, an asterisk beside Max's World Championship. That's not fair to Max, Lewis, or the fans who deserved a real ending to the race rather than one dictated by a need for excitement. F1 has skirted the sport/entertainment border a lot over the years, but this was too far. It was the best season in the history of F1 yet this is what's on a lot of fan's minds. Bummer.
  • 4 32
flag Kootbiker (Dec 13, 2021 at 15:33) (Below Threshold)
 @mikelevy: The best driver won, get over it. Most people are tired of the Hamilton/Merc show.
  • 20 0
 @Kootbiker: Try reading my replies again... I don't care who won. And it doesn't matter if everyone is tired of whoever is winning. It's about Grand Prix being a sporting event, not a concert or movie or anything else. Protocol was not followed because the race director wanted to end under green and keep it exciting more than he wanted to follow the rules. Anyone who loves fair racing and knows the rules should disappointed in how it was handled, NOT in the outcome.

I don't care who won, dude. That's not the point Wink
  • 16 0
 @mikelevy: The crappy part is that Lewis undoubtedly deserved to win that race... but that Max (probably) deserved to win the title. So we have the right result, but in a tarnished way. I think they should ban tire changes under the safety car and set the pit lane speed limit WAY lower during VSC's (so you don't gain an advantage by pitting under the VSC).
  • 12 0
 @nzandyb: Yup, that's exactly it. Luck comes and goes throughout the year, but that was savage for Lewis. f*cking Latifi is Glock but against him this time haha!

Agreed on the tire change ban and pit stop limits - I think it'd make them less of a wild card moment. On the other hand, it makes for excitement but those tire changes are brutally unfair. Lando got screwed a few times this year by that.
  • 5 0
 @mikelevy: *Felipe Massa sitting at home drinking Tequila listening to 'What Goes Around Comes Around' by Justin Timberlake with a smile on his face wider than the gap Glock left at Juncao for Hamilton.
  • 6 0
 @mikelevy: Old mate Fernando seemed to think it was the right thing to do...

I'm still in two minds about the whole thing. But three comments.
1. Merc were dirty as their tyre strategy didn't pay off, had the crash happened 2 laps earlier, we would have ended up with the same result, but with rules followed to the letter, or Merc pitting for softs, and Lewis with the win.
2. Masi has to go so they can clean slate the race director role/process for next year. It's been a hard year for him with everything going on, but I think he's given the teams too much rope, and it needs a hard reset.
3. Masi was prob pissed at being told how to run his race earlier by Toto in regards to safety cars/virtual safety cars, and being hounded by RBR earlier as well. F1 need to put an end to that nonsense of trying to lobby during a race.
  • 6 0
 @mikelevy: for me, it was the inconsistency over the season as a whole that I want them to clean up. That's a statement I think most fans can agree with. Good news, 2022 is a reset for the manufacturers, perfect opportunity to set the record on track limits, red flags, safety, and penalties.
  • 4 0
 @mikelevy: I watched it in disbelief, realizing that the FIA and UCI evolved from the same piece of pond-scum.
  • 6 0
 Levy when will I be able to get Flight Attendant linked to my heads up display Pit Vipors and my Trail Forks Pro+ Ben Cathro in ear pace notes?
  • 6 0
 Hopefully never as that sounds like my nightmare. My ideal FA bike has no lights, no beeping, and no apps. And you can set it up that way if you want.
  • 11 0
 @mikelevy: Cathro whispering cornering tips in your ear when you're riding? With heads up display trail map, bike settings, soil moisture content. You can even get a ghost of Cathro riding infront of on the heads up, and order a craft beer straight from your bike before you arrive at the pub.

Get with it, the future is now old man.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: soo.... Regular suspension?
  • 3 0
 I was able to throw a leg over the new Element C50 this past weekend and it's wild how much it feels like my old (but not so long ago) 2019 Instinct BC edition. The numbers are even more progressive actually, and at the time I felt like what I had was an enduro race rig.
  • 4 0
 Imagine how dope it would be to have the upper clamp on the grim donut chopped so you can use one of the stanchions for holding donuts.
  • 11 0
 I might not cut down my next steer tube now
  • 10 0
 We've considered 3D printing a donut holder. Stay tuned.
  • 5 0
 @DizzyNinja: Hands-free donut ingestion peg!
  • 10 0
 @mikelevy: finally @brianpark is going to print something with some actual bike related value. Wink
  • 10 0
 @IMeasureStuff: Just wait until you see what he's already made for the Donut. It's literally the only product that's made me excited in the last five years #gamechanger
  • 12 0
 @VtVolk: Oh boy, I'm trying that hot line on the wife tonight!
  • 2 0
 @VtVolk: Can confirm that 'Hands-free donut ingestion peg' was not something my wife was willing to fund a Kickstarter for.
  • 5 0
 "some quick love in the garage or deeper maintenance" - I've always said I read PB for the articles.
  • 2 0
 "I never thought I'd be commenting on a PB article, but..."
  • 3 1
 Less expensive bikes, huh? I remember buying a Trek Slash 9.8(GX build) in 2018. It was roughly $5500. I went to my local Trek store the other day and saw a current year 2021 Slash 9.8(GX build) for $7500. That's a $2000 jump on the same trim in less than 3 years. Now I know there have been both minor and major improvements, but it damn sure isn't $2000 worth on the same trim and level of bike. Shit's gotten out of hand.
  • 3 0
 Thats nothing. Have you seen the price of bacon lately?
  • 2 0
 Of course that bike costs a ton of money right now, but that's not what I was talking about.
  • 5 0
 Santa! Trade these cookies if ya bring me donuts!
  • 5 0
 This must have been written before TimBiebs dropped.
  • 4 0
 I am conflicted about that.
  • 3 0
 @mikelevy: oh come on dude, we all know you're a Belieber.
  • 1 0
 @oldmanbucksaw: The guy is just jealous...
  • 2 0
 Looking at this list, is We Are One Arrival getting the bike of the year (contender: Rocky Element)? Is suspension of the year going to Flight Attendant (contenders: 34 and Ext Era V2)?
  • 2 0
 WAO said they are looking into selling a different link for the Arrival. The bike is dual crown rated so I don't think we'll have to wait for a new bike to get a WAO with more travel.
  • 3 0
 Since Canada is bilingual, shouldn't the second version be the Grim Deux-nut?
  • 3 0
 I'm only one-lingual so nah
  • 2 1
 you know your concentrating when your tongue is sticking out on the downhill run. will send you some tootsie pops Levy so you can let us know how many licks it takes to get to the center of a tootsie roll pop.
  • 2 0
 One of the most authentic articles posted on PB in a while. I respect the words written about less expensive bikes. As they say, comparison is the thief of joy.
  • 5 5
 Disappointed in the love for Flight Control. Super lame. Should win an award for the most gimmicky product if the year. SRAM would've won every year since their inception. SRAM, especially RS is proof that marketing is more important than the product.
  • 20 2
 Have you tried it?
  • 4 1
 @mikelevy: Such a simple question. 8 hours if radio silence.
  • 2 1
 @mikelevy:
I Infact have. I have also spent a time on Fox's offering of essentially the same thing.

Just something else for rich cyclists to show off to their friends.
  • 5 1
 @z-man: LV takes the opposite approach of FA, despite them both trying to make bikes pedal better. But yeah, I can see why many riders would agree with you. I just hope they feel the same about so many other silly things on their bike and aren't just hating on LV/FA because they use batteries.

I just picture people hating on FA while having the latest $8,000 enduro bike in their garage with a $1,000 fork that has dials they don't need, carbon wheels they don't need, carbon cranks they don't need etc. Or even an e-bike. I might even say that your point could be applied to almost anything we use and you're just drawing your personal line where you see fit, which is 100% fair. I understand not wanting to use LV/FA, but seem of the arguments against it seem very hypocritical to me.
  • 3 0
 Mike. You need to get custom decals for that fork, with donuts for both the "O" in Fox and the "0" in 40.
  • 4 0
 Donut's for all!
  • 3 0
 Huck to flat on a hardtail? :puzzled:
  • 3 0
 @mikelevy , where did you get that 'occupy bike seat' sticker from?
  • 4 0
 I think from Dirty / drunkcyclist.com many years ago.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: Wow, drunkcyclist... haven't thought of *that* URL in a long, long time.
  • 2 0
 Grim donut with Maxxis white labels?? Oem parts maybe mean a production bike??? Unlikely but speculating is fun.
  • 1 0
 Less expensive bikes?!?! Nowadays you're looking at $1000 CAD for a Norco XFR, how the hell can you say LESS expensive bikes?!
  • 2 0
 Another way to look at it: For the price of a high-end fork, you can get an entire bike that's literally all you need to go mountain biking. Part of the issue isn't the costs, it's expectations and thinking you need things that you don't need. From the perspective of someone who's been doing this for 25+ years, that $1,000 bike is absolutely incredible.
  • 2 0
 Anyone else hear Mike's voice while reading this? His writing matches his face uncanny
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy - did anyone who tested the Arrival also ride the ‘aggressive trailbike’ field test bikes? Seems it would also fit into this category alongside the stumpy Evo?
  • 2 0
 The Arrival looks like a shark in the water
  • 2 1
 Everyone look out for our boy Mike, the e-bike shills are likely to come after him with implements of modern convenience.
  • 2 0
 So .... you are testing Flight Attendant on the Donut then?
  • 1 0
 The photo looks like it has live valve on it. Which is odd since Levy and Henry shat on Live Valve in the field test. Let's hope that's a custom storage box in the photo.
  • 2 0
 @reindeln: No Live Valve on it, just standard Fox stuff.
  • 1 0
 As much as I have minimal interest in owning flight attendant, I'm glad it exists because it's just cool technology.
  • 1 0
 How hard are you going to tease this time with the Grim Donut 2?
  • 3 0
 Spring of... 2023.
  • 3 0
 @mikelevy: SWEET! That's at least a couple years earlier than everyone else at this point!
  • 2 0
 @Vudu74: Certainly quicker than V1 haha
  • 1 0
 Nice bit of writing @mikelevy
  • 1 0
 FloatX on a bike with a dual crown fork?
  • 1 0
 Padded shorts???? WTF!
  • 1 0
 Nice Gullwing.
  • 1 0
 ANOTHER AWESOME BLOG!
  • 1 0
 Now gojakoffacat
  • 1 1
 Who makes $130 tires lol
  • 2 0
 I exaggerate sometimes.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: I don’t think that’s an exaggeration, id take a set of my ideal tires for $130 right now…

obviously you weren’t at veloswap Denver… where you could get used sets of tires for as low at $60 as long as you weren’t concerned about things like tread, or sidewall cords showing…
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