Field Test: Scott Ransom

Nov 28, 2018 at 10:26
by Paul Aston  


PINKBIKE FIELD TEST
SCOTT RANSOM 900 TUNED

The bike’s 64.5° head angle means that it’s a comfortable descender. When you consider the long wheelbase too, it’s clear what sort of riding this bike is aimed at.

Words by Paul Aston, photography by Trevor Lyden


2019 marks the return of the Ransom. It used to be Scott’s do-it-all bike back in 2009 before enduro became its own discipline. It rocked 160mm of travel, tipped the scales at around 30lbs and had a funky looking pull shock system dubbed the “Equalizer”.

With the Genius happily taking its place as the trail bike in Scott's range, this leaves the Ransom to fill the gap between that and the Gambler downhill bike. With 170mm of travel front and rear and 29" (or 27.5+ wheels), the new Ransom blurs the boundaries between enduro, freeride and downhill but climbing still receives a nod with the TwinLoc system.
Ransom 900 Tuned Details

Travel: 170mm front and rear
Wheel size: 29" or 27.5" (700 Tuned)
Frame construction: carbon
Head angle: 64.5º
Chainstay length: 438mm
Sizes: S, M, L, XL
Weight: 29.10 lb / 13.20 kg (size L)
Price: $7,500 USD
More info: www.scott-sports.com

The geometry is modern but arguably still slightly conservative, considering its intentions (and the similar numbers found on its trail brother, the Genius), with a 64.5° head angle, 467mm reach on our size large, 438mm chainstays and a 75° seat angle.

This 900 Tuned model features a Fox 36 FIT4 fork, SRAM X01 Eagle 12-speed drivetrain, Code RSC brakes, and wheels and finishing kit from Syncros to arrive at the $7500 USD price.



Pole Machine review


Climbing

As a 170mm travel enduro race bike, the Ransom has well thought out geometry for climbing and Scott’s own TwinLoc system makes the suspension sit up in its travel in climb mode.

That said, it still climbed better after I had adjusted the seat so that it was as forward as possible and angled the nose down to help get my weight further forward on the uphills, which suggests that the seat angle could be steeper. Unfortunately, the TwinLoc system still keeps the fork high in its travel. It does tilt the bike forwards slightly but would climb even better if the rear end rode higher and the fork sagged more.

I found the bike’s rear suspension supportive in open mode, which is surprising considering Scott’s choice to spec all of their bikes with the TwinLoc system. There's a bit of shock movement if you're standing up and cranking with the shock in the fully open mode, but nothing too crazy, and it was more than acceptable on all but the smoothest of climbs I took the bike on. Plus, the additional levels of traction really helped when things were exceptionally steep or rough.



Descending

The bike’s 64.5° head angle means that it’s a comfortable descender. When you add the long wheelbase to the mix, it’s clear to see what sort of riding this bike is aimed at. I do feel that the ride would have been enhanced with even more aggressive geometry and it would have been nice to see a slacker head angle, which would increase the bike’s stability even further. Yes, considering their Genius trail bike, that has 150mm travel and a 65º head angle, is not an enduro bike it would have been nice to see another degree knocked off the head angle to get it into real downhill bike territory.

Although there are plenty of arguments either way for fork offset, I found that the lower 44mm offset number really helped with the bike’s steering stability in high-speed situations, particularly when there were lots of uneven smaller bumps, such as natural roots and rocks that fed back their input into the bike’s bars. Equally, the bike didn’t feel especially twitchy, and I liked the feeling of needing to make positive inputs to change the bike’s direction.


Pole Machine review


Pros

+ Good looking, well-specced bike
+ Fantastic on big hits
+ Light weight
Cons

- TwinLoc system compromises suspension
- Geometry could be more extreme given its intended purpose
- EXO casing tires on an enduro race bike






367 Comments

  • + 114
 I've noticed that the testers want these bikes to climb well, for their intended purpose, yet they are claiming that a 64.5 degree head angle is not slack enough for this bike, and the others alike. I understand the Stumpy Evo drops into that DH bike head angle category but not every manufacture should have to follow suit. These bikes still need to climb and it doesn't make sense to design them with a head angle and supporting geometry to have them perform closer to a DH bike when you should buy a DH bike if you're that serious. Just my two cents, maybe I'm just bored at work and babbling.
  • + 15
 HA has got nothing to do with climbing if rest of the geometry is spot on, you can go sub 64 and it still will climb better than 67 angled mess.
  • + 36
 @Mondbiker: I understand, and I don't disagree. A slack head angle with the supporting geometry will likely be a great bike. The comment that caught my attention and warranted my rant was the following:

"it would have been nice to see another degree knocked off the head angle to get it into real downhill bike territory."

This isn't a downhill bike; yes it's main purpose is to rip descents but it still needs to climb to the top, so Scott engineered it to do both.
  • + 26
 It feels to me that this review was all just opinion. By the sounds of things the two very gravity oriented reviewers would like it to be even more gravity oriented - DD tires, slacker HA, remove twinloc, X2 shock. But equally the configuration they have here is a good one? All of those changes would make it go uphill worse. For a different rider this might be bang on the money.
  • - 10
flag Mondbiker (Dec 20, 2018 at 12:14) (Below Threshold)
 @tom666: for a different rider hardtail could be bang on as well, just saying...
  • + 20
 @tom666, to be fair, we are talking about a bike with 170mm of travel here...
  • + 10
 @mikekazimer: travel is only one aspect of a bikes intended use.

I don't think anyone looks at the specs on this bike and thinks Scott only intended for it to be good for the down only
  • + 9
 @mikekazimer: Pole Machine field test ready? Razz
  • + 13
 @mikekazimer: It's 170mm travel but it isn't a downhill bike. It's supposed to pedal well enough to be ridden all day or all weekend at an enduro. I feel like it's been designed and specced with a lot of pedalling in mind - like you have to do in most places. Relatively few areas have uplifts super nearby. So it's cool and fine that you guys would prefer a less pedal friendly and more gravity oriented spec - I love bike park laps as much as the next guy - but I don't think that it's a flaw of the bike or that Scott should ditch the twinloc.
  • + 11
 @tom666: I agree, except for one part of the bike: the shock. A Fox without piggyback will most likely overheat when actually using 170mm travel for extended amounts of time. A (DP)X2 would have been better and expected for this price.
  • + 12
 @ZSchnei climbing and pedalling are related but separate characteristics. Smile

@tom666 TwinLoc would be great if it dropped the fork instead of holding it at full extension, and if it was bolted to the standard X2 shock that the bike deserves. The shock specced is impressive even without a piggyback, but at this level we'd rather see the non-proprietary damper.
  • + 2
 @brianpark: You got me there.
  • + 2
 @mikekazimer: A 29" bike with 170mm of travel to be exact. That's only 20mm less than the Session 29. Perhaps it should have XC geo?
  • + 7
 Fully Agree. Bikes like the Torque Capra etc have about the same numbers. Pinkbike seems to have the only reviewers complaining about 65 not being slack enough on these machines. You can keep on making bikes slacker, but surely at one point they start becoming less fun and more cumbersome. I wish they would get some average bikers as guest reviewers. My fat mate always suggested he should become a tester so he can judge how a bike handles a weighty fella.
  • + 17
 @vesko, and yet imagine the complaints if we had testers who weren't very good riders aboard these bikes...
  • + 8
 @mikekazimer: so because his mate is fat, you assume he can't ride ? Safe bet tbh !
  • + 7
 This year I've ridden 4 different bikes with head angles ranging from 63.5 to 67 degrees and travel ranging from 120mm to 170mm, all on the the Downieville DH, pushing max effort and every single one came in within 30 second of each other with no mechanical issues or crashes. I have to imagine you'd need to ride an extremely steep trail for something in the 64-66 range to truly and honestly be too steep.
  • + 1
 Personally for the riding I do in vancouver, I would love a 64/63.5 HA mini dh bike with 180mm both ends, that I can pedal if I absoluuutely have to but if Im honest with my self I probably shuttle my trail bike more than pedal
  • - 1
 @vesko: definitely not taking riding/bike advice from a fat dude.
  • - 1
 @vesko: I would say most of the pb reviewers are average riders. Most of them do not have real racing back grounds. They have just been riding for a long time so have loads of experience and good fitness.
  • + 2
 @ZSchnei: It has 170mm of travel so it is closer to DH than trail bike...63-63.5º HA would be perfect on this bike.
  • + 1
 @iJak: I think these two testers would like that bike very much!
  • + 2
 @aceface17: same to me - this is why i ride a Spindrift
It's not an enduro racebike - probably a litle behind that Ransom in climbing, but for sure it is equal in descending... with a price tag way under 50% of it.
And i can choose my spec!
  • + 2
 @ZSchnei: changing the head angle by a degree won't change the bikes climbing ability.
  • + 1
 @aceface17: Maybe overfork and angleset something like a Torque. But if you really shuttle most of the time while needing to pedal in a pinch, how about a dropper post and wide range drivetrain on a DH bike with a straight-ish seat tube?
  • + 1
 Zach, I agree...
  • + 5
 For 7.5k pluss tax...it Shoud climb, fly,glide,dive and cook...
  • + 3
 @Mac1987: I dont agree about the shock. Their enduro team arent overheating them and I suspect they put them through more grief than most of the rest of us can
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: I agree on this, your testers shred and honestly I don't care what the average rider has to say about it because they don't have the experience to judge whats good and what doesnt at speed, it was nice seeing the bikes being punished on the trails I raced on earlier this year. I dont know if I agree that 64.5 deg head angle isnt slack enough, I've ridden the specialized and the transition patrol and I didn't like them that much. I've had the front end push too much in corners at those extremes. Maybe its down the bike setup, idk.
  • + 2
 @mikekazimer: So brands should get the seat angle correct in large and x-large. It's not rocket science just good design. I like that fact that Aston is starting to point out the obvious. Brands have a build a different mold for the different size front triangles (and should stop being cheap a build scaled rear triangles for each size too) so steepen up the seat angles for the larger frames (which obviously are ridden by taller & generally heavier riders).
  • + 3
 @Mondbiker: It becomes increasingly difficult to keep a slack bike upright in steep, techy climbing. Does anybody care about technical climbing anymore? I dunno.
  • + 1
 @ByStickel: Perhaps not so much the people buying 170mm mini dh bikes?
  • + 2
 @SintraFreeride: there's just so many people on here saying slacker is going to make climbing worse...but after being on a pole with "extreme" geometry... everything people thought they knew go outs the window.
My Machine pedals amazing, granted I am no tech climber, but hey - get's me up the hill without feeling gassed with all the DH like excitement.

The way i see this - 2 extreme ends
XC bike climb = 100%, descent = 10%
DH bike descent = 100%, climb = 10%

these new 29 Long travels can be very close both extremes - Climb = 85% Descent = 90% (eg. Pole Machine/Stamina) just that they don't because something is always missing - not enough travel, not slack enough or seat angle not steep enough. Which is why I want to see how machine stacks up to these big companies
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: My weighty mate still comfortably clears all the jumps on A-Line and then some. He doesn't even know what a head angle is. If you want to get a bike into "real DH bike territory", get a DH bike. Or a Commencal clash. Wait, cancel that, it's got a 65 head angle...
  • + 1
 @ByStickel: Not really if the bike has a long front end and a steep seatangle 76º and + the front end won't lift off the ground.
My bike has a 62.5º HA with a 76.2º ST 520mm of reach and 460cm CS and it is by far the best climbing bike I have ever had!
  • + 1
 @iJak: Having a PoleEvolink myself I can confirm that they and Nicolai/Chris Porter have really redefined what geometry is good for climbing,
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: good point.
  • + 1
 @CM999:
Since the only inline shock that Fox sells is the DPS, which overheats on long descents, is this shock completely custom made and if so, why doesn't Fox sell this not-overheating inline shock sperately? A lot of people with frames that don't accommodate piggyback shocks with waterbottles would be stoked.
  • + 64
 Looks like Adam couldn't get the fork to bottom out. Maybe check for spacers?
  • + 23
 No, there aren’t any in there. I’m sure Wink
  • + 3
 Judging by the tires, that shot was taken before full compression.
  • + 1
 I was wondering if it was with the twinlock engaged
  • + 1
 tires rebound that pressure before the sus fully compresses...watch any slow mo compression videos
  • + 46
 29" and 170 travel...safe to say a more capable DH bike than anything we had 5 years ago.
  • + 18
 Maybe in certain aspects, but theres scenarios where 30mm more travel is gonna be noticeable and 5 years ago there were still good choices for dh. It is more versatile for sure and a bike I would love to own
  • + 24
 @ejopdahl: I can think of plenty of places where I'd rather be on my 7 year old DH bike than any enduro bike I've ridden.
  • + 1
 For sure
  • + 1
 15 years ago maybe, a 5 yr old V10 would destroy this
  • + 2
 10 to 12 years maybe, not 5. we had 650B for 2014 models and 800mm bars
  • + 41
 Can't get enough of huck-to-flat photos. Keep 'em coming!
  • + 7
 That fork flex in the photo is insane. Wonder how head tube angle and how the fork compresses are related to the flex. Cause this photo looks like the fork is compressing more than others with the slacker head angle.
  • + 3
 @dtimms: Came to say the same thing. Plus this shot is of the fork mid-travel where the other ones have been near bottoming out. Either way pretty eye opening to see the flex
  • + 3
 @dtimms: Also could be optical illusion but looks like the stanchions are shifted to the front side of the crown. Clapped demo fork with sloppy bushings?
  • + 4
 @kookseverywhere: I wonder why it wasn't mentioned in the final thoughts(CONS) that there was excessive fork flex and the Fox 36 Fit4 was unproven?
  • + 5
 @rivercitycycles: YUP! Fox should bring back the Zoch 66
  • + 1
 @PhoS: Look at the chainstay rub from heals, I think this bike has been ridden a bit so the fork might be needing new bushings.
  • + 5
 @dtimms: the slacker the head tube, the more stress on the fork when landing straight or on the back first (because the forces from the tires will be at a greater angle to the stanchions).
  • + 1
 You guys think the 36 is flexy? hahahaha

Also the fit4 is unproven? I'm riding it on my bike...seems to work fine.

Also any telescoping fork binds under huck to flats or really any off angle impact, it just matters if the other forces over ride it, its just the nature of the design. You can pick up one of those TRUST forks and avoid this
  • + 2
 @kmg0: I was being sarcastic! Mike had used that phrase after reviewing a Giant with a DVO rear shock that had a seal issue
  • + 24
 Sooo... by the way this review reads it'd be better with a 63.5 HA because it's actually a downhill bike? Since when have any of those numbers been 'conservative' for enduro bikes?

Throw in the obligatory jab at EXO casing, but forget to mention that despite it's 170 extreme super enduro nature there's no piggyback shock, zero mention either of the unique changeable progression shock, nor any comment about the use of Fit4 over Grip 2.

I'm not sure I took any useful info out of this review.
  • - 11
flag bike2850 (Dec 20, 2018 at 12:06) (Below Threshold)
 they are "conservative" when you compare it to bikes in transitions lineup. they were the first to go slack head angle steep seat tube and offset fork. there bikes have a 64 degree HTA and they perform beautifully. After they released there geo labeled SBG other companies started to follow suit with offset and HTA but they are still not as "radical" compaired to the transitions. i think that transition has set a new standard for long travel 29 bikes with there sentinel. looking at it from that perspective yes these other bikes are a bit conservative.
  • + 17
 @bike2850: LOL at Transition being first at anything, first in states maybe.
  • + 19
 @NickB01, those points are all mentioned in the video - skip ahead to 6:15 and 7:37 for the suspension discussion.
  • + 0
 @Mondbiker: who did it before them? genuinely interested. especially the short offset thing were there others to produce that before Transition?
  • + 6
 @bike2850: Chris Porter from geometron bikes was using shorter offsets in 2015-16 offering it for customers, experimenting with them even earlier by using fork lowers form 26 inch forks. When it comes to geometry, there isn´t many people out there who were pushing industry in this direction more than him.
  • + 14
 @bike2850, along with Chris Porter, Whyte were also using reduced offset forks before Transition.
  • - 3
 deleted
  • + 4
 When the first 650b Giant Reign came out in 2014, it did so with custom offsets on the Pikes that came with it.
  • + 19
 I think what makes me laugh is that they complain about EXO casing tires. In all the videos they are riding in they are blessed with black hero dirt and almost perfect trail conditions.

I have ridden EXO casing tires forever in the rockiest, dustiest, dryest, tire slashing conditions in SoCal. I have flatted once in 5 years and it was a huge burp. I am 215 geared and ride in the top 5% ( that's top 100 times out of about 10000 on some DH trails) on almost all DH trails in Laguna. I do understand that for racing DD is better because of the risk of flatting and ruining your race. What i don't understand is how they flat tires so much. Maybe you should try not smashing the bike through everything you ride and actually avoid the rocks that flat tires.

I really don't understand how these 150-160 lbs rider/testers destroy tires and wheels. I think maybe you should learn not to take terrible lines and then maybe you would not flat every week.

I do understand that accidents happen and things break but at the frequency you are breaking and flatting maybe its your riding and not the product????
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: live in Colorado and have seen no end of torn tires. Most of my friends run DD rear, I even cut a DD in an extreme pinch flat in Moab, and I only weigh 145lbs. Was in finale after the EWS when everything was super blown out and we were averaging 4 flats a day on the shuttles I was on.
  • + 1
 @catweasel: I'm not saying its not possible, what i am saying is that from the videos that terrain looks almost perfect. Colorado like Socal is rocky.
  • - 1
 @Snowsed341: It is easy to slash or burp an EXO casing tire. All you have to do is run them under 40psim haha. But seriously they probably destroy them because they want to run lower tire pressures to get grip and of course the sidewalls are paper thin and thus can't cope with that. I'm 132lb and have ripped singleply tires but then I do run them 14-17psi...
  • + 5
 @SintraFreeride: 14-17 psi means wrecked wheels and destroyed tires. Tire pressure is personal but at that psi you are asking for issues.

I generally run 23F - 25-27R
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: this is AMAZING !! perfect observations.
  • + 2
 @Verbl-Kint: yea but the reign went for longer offset at 51mm
  • + 1
 @SintraFreeride: I honestly believe it´s easier to slash tires at higher pressures as the tire is too hard to flex away from impact so there is no other way for impact to go other than cutting the tire. Sound fairly logical eh? Obviously softer tires are prone to pinchflats, but those can be solved to large extent by tire inserts, however slashing sidewalls, there isn´t much you can do, it´s possible to slash DD or even DH casing if you are unlucky.
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: I agree. I have cut 1 tyre in the last 10 years of riding every week
  • + 1
 @Spech: They did choose a higher offset but at 46mm. Standard offset for a 650b Pike was 42mm.
  • + 3
 @Snowsed341: I can't agree more with you. For that kind of grip EXO tires are more than ok. I also ride very rocky trails at home and although I get flats sometimes, I'd choose EXO over DD all the time, just because they offer some kind of resistance and are very light. That's why they exist. It makes you choose better lines and being smoother also. You don't need to smash every single root or rock. Also, 15 psi?! You guys are crazy!
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: That is why I run Procore insert now. Can run the front 12-15psi and the back 14-17psi with no problems. My tires grip like glue on off camber roots now Wink
  • + 1
 @PabloMoll: Yeah but I'm 60kg with kit...so I can get away with super low pressures. Before procore I ran supergravity tires at 18-20psi with tubes
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: I'm guessing you have never been to whistler
  • + 1
 @gnarnaimo: and i'm guessing you have never ridden in Socal!!!! We are not blessed with hero dirt daily. We are riding harsh, rocky unforgiving dusty, dry terrain. We don't ride groomed bike park laps or maintained trails.

I am actually jelly of what you get to ride, but most of us in the southwest watch these videos and laugh when you guys are complaining about dry conditions. I grew up riding in England (similar weather to PNW and Whistler) and the dirt in that hemisphere reacts very differently to what we experience.

Recently we received a few days of rain. It just dried out a week later but the rain created rut city, loose rocks everywhere and actual trail work has to be done to rebuild the trail.

I am not discounting that you guys have some very rocky terrain, but i am commenting on the sections of trail that are being ridden in these videos.
  • + 2
 @SintraFreeride: at tire pressures that low how is the tire not folding over in hard cornering. Why would you want to pedal around a wheel that weighs a ton when you can just inflate your tires to what is required. Procore is for racing and running 14 psi in the front is asking for your tire to roll over.

I guess i just don't understand the logic of riding pressures so low. I am assuming we are talking about tires in the 2.3-2.5 range. If you are running 2.6+ i can understand why the lower pressures are needed.
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: Fair enough! I have ridden socal, and a bit of other southern stuff.. I know how rocky it is. Whistler is loaded with all types of terrain, from perfectly groomed to raw, rough, rocky terrain. There's plenty sharp, jagged rock there. I think they are just displaying the stuff that videos best, and I doubt they video'd everything they were riding there.
  • + 1
 @bike2850: check out the Chris Porter interview PB did back in 2017

www.pinkbike.com/news/the-interview-chris-porter-2017.html
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341:

I've also been on EXOs on Stans wheels for years consecutively with zero flats. I'm not far from there and smash similarly rocky trails regularly. I definitely want more casing for the bike park but I never felt the need for anything more on the trail bike. Sounds like some of these guys missed the memo on realistic tire pressures.
  • + 0
 @Snowsed341: The tires aren't rolling off the rim because a) I run wide rims and b) procore locks the tire onto the rim. I have tested 10-11psi but then there is too much tire squire though in a straightline the grip is insane. I would rather have a wheel that weighs a tad more, provides grip and safety and protects my rims from flat spots. Sure I could run EXO tires tubeless with 40psi but then I'd be crashing all the time or riding super slowly. I am taking about Schwalbe 2.35 tires which are the same as Maxxis 2.5 tires. Now if you have a different setup and it works for you then more power to you. Personally I have tried different setups and this is the best for my type of riding and alpine terrain. When I hit the bikepark I run the tires a tad higher 15psi front and 16-17psi rear. For regular XC/trail I'll go down to 14psi front and 15psi rear. For super tech slow riding I'll go even lower.
  • + 1
 @SintraFreeride: holy hell thats low pressure. I have friends with Cush core who wouldn’t ever run pressure that low. I would have assumed no one runs pressure that low but it is interesting to see that it works for you.
  • + 1
 @SintraFreeride: I also run Schwalbe MM and HD 2.35 not sure I would ever go down that low but if it works for you then i guess it works. I also weigh 215 geared and pretty sure my wheels would be destroyed at that psi.
  • + 1
 doublepost
  • + 0
 @bike2850: @Snowsed341 I weigh 60kg (132lb) with gear and have a 180mm travel bike so I can get away with it. I used to be a trials rider so I know how low you can go before smashing rims.
  • + 1
 @SintraFreeride: Fair enough man, makes sense.
  • + 23
 Yesterday, 65 degrees wasn’t slack enough. Today, it’s 64.5. When will we be satisfied?!
  • + 6
 when it matches transitions 64 degrees
  • + 12
 to be fair, owning a Sentinel, I've yet to find a downside to the 64 HTA....
  • - 4
flag bike2850 (Dec 20, 2018 at 11:34) (Below Threshold)
 @Klainmeister: Thats my thoughts exactly. and i believe if im correct transition was the first to go really slack with short offset with SPG correct?
  • + 2
 @bike2850: SBG, yes. It's interesting because I ride a mix from rolling foothills to Angel Fire DH courses on the Sentinel and there's no spot that I find the 64 HTA is a deterrent. It's just fun and climbs fine.

Now, the super steep STA, that causes some issues particularly on rolling terrain where you don't want your dropper down all the way (it tries to throw you a bit too forward) or flat terrain where you aren't using your hamstrings most effectively.

But otherwise, it's the best bike I've owned by a longshot.
  • + 4
 @bike2850: Chris porter was using shorter offsets couple of years ago, as a matter of fact they were consulting him during development of SBG. He also recommended going slacker than 64 but that would be too brave for USA I guess.
  • + 1
 @Klainmeister: cant summarize my feelings more accurately then you have. after watching and reading these reviews i am more and more happy that i own a sentinel. because the suggestions in these reviews for frame geo mirror the numbers on that bike! props to transition for setting the bar high and forcing everyone to scramble to catch up.
  • + 0
 @Mondbiker: thats interesting that he wanted to go even slacker. your probably right about scarring people away even i was worried to buy it without ridding it, i went off of friends feedback instead. i think a slacker head angle would defiantly scare some off because of this. do you happen to know how slack he wanted to go?
  • + 2
 @bike2850: he said something along the lines of "get it below 63 to feel real magic" if I remember correctly, but
I´m sure he would also say go longer in the CS lenght to go with it as he views geometry as a complex topic, not collection of separate numbers. CS lenght is still pretty short on Sentinel, reach and WB aren´t huge either, but it´s a bit more progressive than most mainstream manufacturers.
  • + 0
 @Mondbiker: wow that would be super crazy maybe in a few years after people adjust.
  • + 2
 @bike2850: The thing is most people who try such unusual (I don´t want to use extreme as it isn´t even close) geometry tend to find it absolutely normal, almost weird by how normal it feels for riding. Guys from Geometron are successfully riding bikes with HA between 61-62, the single crown fork flex becomes issue at that point though, which is one of the reasons they use lowered fox 40s or others dual crowns. Whey you realise that Fabien Barel was racing(and winning) with sub 58deg HA quite some time ago...63 is not extreme even for trail enduro bike.
  • + 22
 www.instagram.com/p/BrnxEflFRBC once we hit this point.
  • + 0
 @Mondbiker: fair points and your right, the sentinel does feel quite normal.
  • + 1
 @brianpark: I like ALU frame for flexxx lol. Why aren´t we already there?
  • + 6
 It would be interesting to lookup the HA of all of last years winning Enduro bikes to see how unenduro they are lol
  • + 11
 @mfoga, it'll be even more interesting to remember these comments, and then look at the results in 2020 and see what head angle those bikes have.
  • + 2
 @Klainmeister: Agreed, the Sentinel ruined a lot of bikes for me.
  • + 2
 @poleczechy: funny, i'm being downvoted but I doubt many of those people have spent a lot of time on a Sentinel, which to me is where all these bikes are headed. Oh well.
  • + 1
 @mfoga: our current enduro bikes have slacker head angles then our M9s did LOL!!!
  • + 1
 @Klainmeister: I noticed as well... I got your back.
  • + 1
 @Klainmeister: I couldn’t agree more. I have a carbon sentinel and it’s truly unbelievable how versatile this thing is. It climbs so well and is an absolute blast downhill, super stable. I still can’t believe it every time I ride it.
  • + 2
 63-63.5º is pretty good for all around riding. Under that you better be riding steep stuff 70% of the time or it isn't worth it.
  • + 1
 Not sure when but I am more than happy to ditch my 71 degrees for 65 when pointing the bike down hill. I look at the stuff I was scared of on the old XC bike and after riding a slacker Enduro Bike I think to myself how paltry those descents I was afraid of were. I wonder how I would fair taking my XC hard tail down the same DH and jump tracks I have had fun on my Enduro bike.....
  • + 14
 I understand PB's reasoning, but more and more I think that the sb150 was put in the wrong category. We're in an era where geometry and burliness define a bikes intent and capability moreso than 10-20mm of travel. 3 bikes in and it sounds like the SB is still the most capable on test.
  • + 26
 Yeah this is fair. I ultimately felt that the Bronson vs SB150 comparison would be the most interesting, and maybe in hindsight I'd organize them differently.
  • + 12
 Uh-oh here come the Yeti Fanboys.
  • + 7
 @brianpark: The SB150 should have been in this group and the SB130 should have been in the trail/enduro catagory.
  • + 2
 @brianpark: Can we get the SB150 included in the super enduro comparison as well? If it's burlier than the category it was placed in, I'm wondering how much gap there is between it and the Ransom and Firebird. No I'm not a Yeti fanboy... Just a fast bike fanboy.
  • + 18
 @hugebiff, the filming wrapped up a while ago, so we unfortunately won't be able to deliver that for you. Having ridden both, I can say that the gap between the two isn't massive. The Ransom does have that extra 20mm of rear travel for when things get really rough, and I'd say that it has slightly better small bump sensitivity than the SB150, although it's really close - both bikes are great performers when it comes to the level of grip they provide.

The SB150 is the better climber, no question; there's no need to use any levers on the rear shock, and the steeper seat angle is also beneficial.

In a head-to-head race I don't think there would be a clear winner - both bikes have plenty of podium potential.
  • + 0
 @KillaK801: You found me out! I lusted after my highschool chemistry teachers pre-colorado yeti, once rode an sb5 in a parking lot, and live about a mile from the yeti HQ. Bonafide fanboy.

Nope! Just an observation based on how I've interpreted the field test reviews.
  • + 7
 But then they would have rode it hard enough to have to report about all that chainstay flex and tire rub... Smile Jkn
  • + 13
 @stiingya, please leave that dead horse alone. Dead Horse
  • + 5
 @mikekazimer: are you saying that in a flat fire road climb race, throwing the switch on the Scott to fully rigid is still slower than the yeti full squish?

I always get the feeling that nobody takes Scott up on the potential of TwinLoc. At Galbraith, everyone just climbs the fire road with their suspension "on".
  • + 2
 @Mtmw: There's no way... I've owned both bikes. I still have the Ransom.
  • + 3
 @Mtmw: absolutely, the twinloc is superb it you use it.. like all the gears on your cassette.
I've seen reviews that complain about the twinloc under the bars when the dropper lever should be the priority.. Scott give you that option and supply a second lever allowing a regular 1x style lever to be used.
  • + 12
 Guys...I'm a bit surprised about all the ''cons'' about the Exo tires. Maxxis doesn't even offer DD 29'' tires with decent width. Bike companies do spec EXOs because they will not Spec DH Casing Tires. If they would have specced DH tires, your initial toughts would have been '''ah the bike is too heavy''. If they would have specced DD tires, tires would be 2.3'' wide and you would give cons about ''tires not extreme enough''.
  • + 1
 I have DD casing WT 2.5" tires, that's a pretty decent 29" tire width I agree, some people knock the weight, but I'd rather get to the bottom of the hill with tire intact vs. the other option.
  • + 4
 @ZSchnei: Minion DHR2 and DHF are not offered in 29x2.5 in DD. Only High Roller 2 in Maxx Terra Coumpound which is there ''hard'' coumpound not ideal for Front Tire.
  • + 2
 @basmajor: You're right, and I speculated that you may have meant the DHF and DHR specifically. I wasn't sure so I mentioned the specs of the High Roller II that I'm running.
  • + 2
 Aggressor comes in 2.5 DD, but not as much of a slam dunk as the DHRII. Really wish that was available in DD and 2.5
  • + 1
 Schwable Super Gravity Tires come in 29". Been great for me and the Addix compound is definitly better.
  • + 1
 For '19 we get a DD Assguy, at 1310g so not much lighter though. Also an 2.5 EXO DHF Maxxgrip at 1060g. Those will be my new front tires. I run a 2.5 DD Aggressor out back.
  • + 10
 Scott just can’t get away from the extra buttons and levers can they...

Every time I read a review by Paul, it seems like he’s comparing every bike to the GeoMetron, which he clearly loves. Comments always seem to center around “SA could be steeper, or HA could be slacker”. He’s clearly a very good rider, but also clearly has pretty extreme preferences, which always seem to come through in his reviews of DH bikes and bigger enduro bikes. Having ridden a GeoMetron around briefly, I can say that they’re beautiful, weird ass bikes - good weird for some, bad weird for others (me).

Question to PB: are these reviews in the field test based on opinions of one dude (article author), or of several of the PB testers?
  • + 4
 This is my hang up with him as well.
  • + 1
 Several.
  • + 9
 Every time I read:

"That said, it still climbed better after I had adjusted the seat so that it was as forward as possible and angled the nose down to help get my weight further forward on the uphills, which suggests that the seat angle could be steeper."

All I'm going to do is think it needs a 10mm longer stem and that the chain stays are probably too short.
  • + 2
 Ya almost every bike ends up like this...especially if rider is on a large.(6ft)
  • + 3
 I adjust my seat like that on every bike I ride! Is that odd?
  • + 6
 @jrocksdh: problem is you've got bike designers trying to keep up with what's fashionable to reviewers. A lot of them are like the ones here on Pinkbike. The changes for shorter chainstays went on and on, bike companies made them shorter even though the mess with balance. Stems must be stubby and bars must be mega wide. That was easy enough to change. Reach must be longer. Slowly getting there. Seat tubes must be steeper. Also slowly getting there. Meanwhile not a single designer from a major manufacturer seems to look at the good old seat to grips measurement. It's such an easy thing to measure, and most people have a fairly definable comfort zone for seated climbing up steep grades.

Stems are now 35-50mm on a lot of bikes. That's down from 60-90mm a few years back.
Reach has increased enough to compensate.
But now steep seat tubes are costing us another 25-50mm. Still waiting for that to come back...
  • + 1
 @yzedf: The XL has a ~670 horizontal TT, that's not a short cockpit...???
  • + 1
 @stiingya: that's 5mm longer than a 2015 giant reign, which came with a 10mm longer stem. Ground breaking stuff :eyeroll:
  • + 1
 @yzedf: Do you sit for downhill?
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: talking about seated climbing. Try to keep up.
  • + 1
 @yzedf: But if the saddle is already slammed, longer stem will be more likely to induce backache in terms of seated pedaling. So much hinges on toptube length at ride height. If the actual STA were a couple of degrees steeper, this would be corrected. It's even worse on the new Reign. If Ransom had geo of Smash, but with a 64 degree HTA, that would be truly pedally and downhilly. As it sits, it's a high-functioning but travel-handicapped DH. Forward rotation of rider occasioned by steeper STA and slight reach increase effectively lengthens chainstay via weight redistribution. Twinloc is a cruel joke as it fixes the S/HTAs at their slackest in lockout mode with fork at full extension. The best one can do at this point in terms of rider compartment length (short) vs wheelbase (long) is Pole, and it's the actual STA that allows it.
  • + 2
 @yzedf: you don´t need longer bike to climb as you sit down and don´t move around. You need longer cs to match longer front end. Try to keep up Wink
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: my second post talked about the fashion of short chainstays. Caught up yet?
  • + 2
 @yzedf: Didn´t read your first post, sorry, at least we can agree on that. However longer top tube is anything but helpful unless you are on wrong sized bike to begin with, but with anything else other than Pole or Geometron that´s pretty much impossible with Reach/toptube ratios.
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: that new Geometron with the different extensions that can be changed looks promising for running based on rider size but also preferences or even riding location. Way out of my price range though, so I ended up with a one year old reign sx for under half price of new.
  • + 1
 @yzedf: Well reign is reasonably sized for american brand, it would be my favourite if I had to buy "mainstream" bike, or maybe second after nukeproof mega.
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: Toptube//STA//stack fail. Not 29". Don't forget Raaw Madonna
  • + 1
 @ceecee: I am not a fan of 29ers, so no problem for me Smile Raaw madonna deffo has some priorities in line with Geometron, they focus on durability not weight and that´s admirable.
  • + 2
 @yzedf: very valid regards the steep seat tubes. I think they mess up the position for seater riding on flat / mild climbs. It spoilt the Nukeproof Scout I had.
  • + 1
 @yzedf: nobody said it has to be ground breaking. Just that it's not a short cockpit...

The 2015 Giant Reign? You mean the year they didn't even import XL bikes to the US? Great argument.

What kind of seatpost angle did that come with? How far over the rear wheel do u end up while climbing? May not matter to some but at 6'3" it's important to me...
  • + 1
 @stiingya: I ride a 2017 reign sx, I'm just over 6'3" and I ride a large. I've got short legs and I ride a lot of tight, natural trails that are more suited to hiking than biking (both up and down). To run a 170 dropper the post is slammed and it's still 3mm too high for my preferred shoes and pedals. Seatpost angle is the new fashion to replace the shortest chainstay possible fashion. I really don't care, I've ridden bikes from 72 up to 76 (whatever a xl sentinel has) and for me it makes no difference in my riding whether we are talking power or traction. Hell, that sentinel was the worst climbing bike I've ridden other than my DH bike.

It's all about preferences. I hate super short chainstays, I wish head tubes were taller, 495mm seat tubes are nice, I really like slack head angles, I prefer a balanced feel front to back with a bit of pop and I can't stand a bike that requires a climb switch.
  • + 1
 @yzedf: #1 from other comments they have been riding a Pole Machine. So likely all of their field test feedback is "tainted" by a bike that was not included in the field tests that has some pretty extreme geo???

#2 if your tall but have short legs than it makes sense that a slack STA isn't as big a deal to you. Most tall people also have long legs which mean were sticking the seat WAY up in the air. the farther UP it goes also the farther BACK it goes due to the angle and you end up further over the rear wheel and then on steep terrain your bike sits further into the rear travel throwing your weight even further to the back. A steep STA fights against that. A steep STA and extending reach so that your cockpit length stays the same is essentially optimizing your bike for the two extremes of steep UP and steep DOWN. (which for most is where you want your bike to excel?) Fortunately if you find them too steep it's easy to use a layback post and if needed also size down to get to "old school" geo feel.

But, I kinda don't get your logic when your on a bike with a really long reach and an old school slack seat tube angle and you have to size down to a large because of it. They extended reach without steepening their seat tubes and it just makes them feel really long and stretched out, you have to be flat back like a roady for seated climbs on those things!!! Smile

Also, your downhill bike must be a pretty decent climber? OR your Sentinel shock/set up was really clusterflucked...?

It sounds like we at least both can agree on taller head tubes? Smile (of which Giant has usually been really good about)

On the climb switch thing. I have never rode a switch infinity. So maybe it is really the holy grail of plush but also a supportive climbing platform? But so far every bike I've spent time on that had some kind of mechanical system/leverage curve to create a climbing platform was never as plush. I mean it's not that it's detrimental, various DW, VPP, Maestro, etc. You get them feeling good and it seems like they are totally plush and all. But then you go back to a Horst link in Open and it just feels like it's so much smoother... It's like when you ride a new fork VS one with the seals broke in and the stiction worked out? I mean honestly I'm good with most modern suspension designs. And for sure there are tons of bikes I've never rode on, or rode enough to know. Just think that there is still merit in a climb switch. Heck, when my legs get tired it doesn't matter how good the suspension is. I'm still flipping that switch! Smile

Anyway, Santa Claus is coming to town...
  • + 10
 That was a brief written review (can't watch video at current computer). Clearly Paul Aston only likes 76+ degree STAs.

Should mention the bike has no ISO mounts as this rules it out for some.
  • + 3
 Really no iso mounts? how dumb is that! that should defiantly have been mentioned.
  • + 1
 It looks like a part of review is missing. There is no mention of suspension quality during descending and no final conclusion ...
  • + 1
 @lkubica, our field test articles don't have a "Pinkbike's Take" - they're not as in depth as our longer term written reviews.
  • - 4
flag lkubica (Dec 20, 2018 at 12:14) (Below Threshold)
 @mikekazimer: Nethertheless you listed a negative "TwinLoc system compromises suspension " which is never mentioned in text, at least not in descending mode. This is only in the vid, where you talk about the lack of proper adjustments. For me, this text is incomplete. I mean, if you have pros and cons, I should be able to track any of them in text with at least two-three sentences of explantion.
  • + 3
 @lkubica, the text is meant to supplement the video, not be an exact transcription. For more written riding impressions, you can check out what Alex Evans thought here: www.pinkbike.com/news/first-ride-scott-ransom-900-tuned.html.
  • + 11
 @lkubica: Good Lord, what the hell is wrong with you? How many should statements do you live by? This pothole shouldn't have been here. That porta potty should not have urine on the floor. This summer should have been longer.
  • + 5
 @lkubica: you sure are picky about free content
  • - 7
flag lkubica (Dec 20, 2018 at 13:34) (Below Threshold)
 For f*cks sake, this was just my private opinion about this text. If this is like it was meant to be, then great. I do not expect that this text is a transcript of vid. I just think that absolutely vital part of this vid has no mention in the text. Free or not, I thought that your aim was to create a piece of text which is clear, logical and captures most important aspects of the vid. For me, as a reader, the text is not 100% clear without watching the vid. Probably it is also not clear for other readers also. To put it differently, I tried to help, not to attack anyone. Criticism is not hate.
  • + 8
 Ok, just watched the video, and it was a proper review once I watched the video. Great job guys and good info all around. Thanks for being straightforward about the bikes' relative strength and weaknesses in the reviews, particularly over the last couple of weeks.
  • + 12
 170 mm on an xc shock... next!
  • + 9
 XC Shock, far from it bud. The review from bike mag when in to a lot more detail about the build of this bike for sure worth reading.

www.bikemag.com/2018-bible-summer-camp-mammoth/tested-scott-ransom-900-tuned-7200
  • + 1
 i kinda agree with you and like they said in the review if scott would just drop there twin lock and go for a better shock the bike would be better because of it.
  • + 0
 @bike2850: i dont think the Non-Reservoir shock holds it back, its that the TwinLock just doesnt work as advertised for climbing to justify it. Most mortals wont see any advantage to a reservoir shock, especially with a non-rez having a custom tune. Its a marketing ploy the industry is good at selling.
  • + 1
 @PHeller: I disagree that mortals dont need a reservoir shock. i have ridden a dps and a dpx2 and there is a noticeable difference in feel at the end of long descents. the dps would heat up and start to loose its ride characteristics, it felt harsher and less controlled. i dont feel this on the reservoir shock and i am not even a crazy good rider. and if you look at it for what the bike is intended for, ridding really hard, a different shock would be beneficial. even though most riders are not going to reach the full potential of this bike those that do or come close will be looking for the extra performance a reservoir shock offers.
  • + 1
 @bike2850: actually what they said was they could do without the front twin lock and instead put the grip2 dampener in there. Which is a fair point
  • + 1
 @bike2850: this is definitely not a DPS. I race enduro and DH, have a few dozen 2000’ descents on my ransom, it doesn’t get anymore warm than my previous x2. Give it a try before knocking it. It’s a lot bigger than a regular dps.
  • + 9
 Always liked the looks of Scott bikes, just a shame that the twinloc system ruins it. Fine on an XC bike, not on a 170mm enduro bike.
  • + 4
 You can take it off...
  • + 0
 @yzedf: Easy enough to do on the fork, but difficult to do the shock unless you like not having any control over compression damping in the shock
  • + 3
 @AD4M: The fork I think is the most important bit to remove, remote shock is something I've dreamed about... coming from an old 2012 Spark owner with no Twin-Loc due to aftermarket shock and fork.
  • + 4
 @AD4M: It's amazing on the shock.
  • + 5
 @AD4M: I've demoed this bike, with a lot of trepidation about that shock but was blown away. It's definitely not an XC shock as a lot of people suggest, the bike was way more composed than my TR Sentinel but outclimbed it too.
  • + 2
 People have been so oversold with marketing for big heavy shocks that everyone thinks they need one. Me? Im waiting for a lightweight, non-resevoir shock with all the adjustments of big shock. MRP Airshock, perhaps?
  • - 2
 @AD4M: my trail/enduro/AM bike runs a coil without a climb switch, I'm not the target audience for a air shock with climb switch. The video said that it was useless anyway, so I stick with my first comment. If you're looking at xc type uphill performance they make a much better bike for that.
  • + 0
 The twinlock is the reason I didn't buy a Genius. You get an overcrowded bar, cables everywhere. What's wrong with flipping a climb switch before and after the climb ?
  • + 2
 @PHeller: you mean DB inline air?
  • + 1
 @yzedf: Most people I have spoken with seem to take it off on the Fork but like it for the Shock.

Makes sense and gives you good options when riding for on the fly, easy rear shock switching. On the fork it is not necessary and even a hindrance when climbing which is what the TwinLoc system was designed for. As stated, would be better if it pulled the fork down in its travel when activated, if not take it off the fork and leave the fork open and have reduced travel at the rear for climbing which works well on the bikes geometry.
  • + 1
 @Whipperman: For me it was the 2019 Fox 34 fork based on the E-bike version. Specking that up to a Fox 36 I decided to look elsewhere. The Scott Shop was also pushing the Genius over the Ransom.
  • + 0
 @gnarterrorist: most of my riding is either laid back riding with dog rides or high heart rate suffer-fests. Both are situations where, for me, set it and forget it works best. Years of riding hardtails and now doing a lot of DH riding I guess has moved my expectations. I had a full squish trail bike 4-5 years ago with Fox CTD that probably also influenced my thinking (it was unreliable junk).
  • + 7
 We get it, you are awesome and the rest of us that don't destroy EXO tires in 5 minutes suck at riding. Perhaps if you weren't testing in a bike park this would be less of an issue? Need to remember that half the people buying even 160 to 170mm bikes are often riding semi-tame trails. I know the reply is "its an enduro race bike"...ok that's fine, but 90% of people buying this aren't racing Enduros. It's fine to mention the EXO casing point as something for people that are riding aggressive and rough terrain, but laughing and the constant jokes about kids tires bothers me. Otherwise, great review!!! LOL

Also, how many of these "great climbing enduro bikes" are left out there when you add almost a pound of rotating mass?
  • + 3
 Yeah the fact that the reviewers seem to be acting like your average purchaser of these bikes only intends to use it to attend EWS races seems a little disconnected from reality.
  • + 2
 Got that right, but also for competition, EXO casing is often a better choice. For the front it definitely is. Weight is important too, heck even for downhill weight matters and an enduro casing such as EXO or other might be the best choice.
  • + 7
 Consider the following...

EXO tires were spec'ed on my new bike this year and I used them for a single month. I popped them several times (3 times requiring significant repairs), ruining a lot of terrific descents that I had earned so hard. The sidewalls tore up easily and I bent a rim following one of those failures. I thought the new bike was at fault!

I switched to my old bike's exact tire setup (all-mountain, not DH) and haven't had even the slightest problem. And now that I trust my new bike, I'm been riding the same trails more aggressively than ever for months with zero flats.

I ride things that need a really good bike configuration, but I'm nothing special beyond that. In my case, there isn't a shadow of a doubt in my mind that EXO tires were exactly as bad as the jokes being made.
  • + 3
 @tripleultrasuperboostplusplus: I can only assume these descents you speak of have lots of sharp rocks and I don't doubt you tore open the tires. My main beef with the constant EXO bashing by the reviewers (not just this review, many others) isn't that they are lying or anything, it's just the assumption that everyone will have the same problems they've had.

I know Strava is evil, but for reference I have several semi rocky, rooty runs with 400-1000ft elevation changes, often times doing those trails 2-3 times per ride. I am no rocket, but I post decent times, top 10-20% on Strava and my EXO casing DHF is 16 months old and no punctures or tears. It's also seen about 3 days of lift access including one run down a World Cup DH trail (very slowly, no doubt). Also took a trip to AZ last year and rode for 3 days on fairly rocky trails with EXO DHRII front and rear on a rental bike. Never touched these trails before and again, evil Strava showed I was moving at a decent pace. I'm no Martin Maes, but faster than most of the people out there those days. Again, tires were perfect.

I just think some perspective is needed before trashing the EXO casing. If you're the type of rider, riding terrain that's going to tear open EXO casings, you know who you are. If you don't know who you are, you are probably fine with the EXO casing.
  • + 6
 IMO you're over-biked if you're not shredding EXO tires on a 170mm bike.

I love my 6" bike on steep terrain that shreds EXO tires, but it's slow and boring on the tamer trails where you can get away with light tires. I have an XC/trail bike with less travel and lighter tires for those rides, and it's faster, more responsive, and fun.
  • + 2
 Yeah our concerns about the EXO spec on these bikes isn't a huge factor if you ride "semi-tame trails" all the time, but then you're on the wrong bike anyway. These are huge monster-truck bikes meant for smashing rowdy terrain.

We hear that for 2019/2020 a lot of brands are switching to tougher casings, so we aren't the only ones with this perspective.
  • + 10
 I must say... this was the best bike review I have ever seen and better than anything I've read.
  • + 7
 Surprising that none of the "Super Enduro" bikes received overly positive reviews. Curious as to what their ideal Super Enduro bike is that is currently out there. Looking to get a new bike in this category sometime over the next 12 months and was hoping this Field Test would point me in the right direction.
  • - 1
 i agree most of the positive feedback has been on parts which i think is a dumb way to review a bike build not many will buy. but the numbers for geo that they want to see changed on the bikes there reviewing have been accomplished with transition bikes. i own the sentinel and love it but there more super enduro bike the patrol would fit your bill perfectly. i would strongly recommend you check out and ride those bikes.
  • + 1
 @bike2850: Yeah the Sentinel is pretty high up on my list - planning on test riding a bunch if possible.
  • + 12
 I actually think it's a badly defined category industry wide. Pinkbike is calling it super enduro, most of the manufacturers are calling these bikes their enduro. Reality is most of the enduro racers seem to be often riding smaller bikes with big forks (Rocky team on the Instinct BC instead of the Slayer, Santa Cruz on the Bronson/Hightower instead of the Nomad, Specialized on the Stumpy instead of the Enduro etc). These are more enduro bikes for us mere mortals, and more realistically - these bikes are just designed for fun. I'm riding a slayer, and it's great - i'm not going to win uphill racers against an xc bike, but it will get me there with a smile on my face, and the smile turns to laughter on the way down.
  • + 2
 @nzstormer: Truer words have rarely been spoken.
  • + 2
 @nzstormer: yeah, I need more bike than Jesse Melamed to get down modern EWS tracks at pace.
  • - 2
 @bull-dozer I don't they have overly positive reviews as I don't think anyone has a proper Enduro bike out yet that spec'd well. I bet a Pole, Geometron with Code Brakes, EXT rear shock, Ribbon Coil, DD tires, DT Swiss wheels would get nothing but positive remarks. More context here: nsmb.com/articles/chris-porter-geometronnicolai-g1-story
  • - 2
 @jaydawg69: f*ck code brakes lol.
  • + 6
 Slack seat angle with a middling reach measurement. Why can't bike companies get their heads around a steeper seat angle and adding some more reach? The saddle to bar would stay the same but we'd get a better climbing position.
It's like they've been told they can only change two things per new model, when there's a list of half a dozen changes that need to happen.
  • + 5
 Totally agree. Also, why do every change in only half degree increments, only to change it a bit more the next year? Do some r&d with a 45 degree ha, 90 degree seat angle, change everything to the extreme, find the limit and dial it back. Then we dont have to keep having a half degree slacker option every year
  • + 1
 well said! I guess they have been praising this old fashioned geo for so long they just cannot dig their way out this hole without losing credibility.
  • + 1
 76 should be min seat angle with reaches about 465-470 large and 10mm +/- from there for M/xl
  • + 4
 I do have to give Yeti credit that they really went for it with the changes to the SB130 and SB150. Steep seat tube, slack HA, shorter offset fork, space for a waterbottle, and longer reach.
  • + 0
 @jrocksdh: even more importantly it should be actual seat angle not effective BS that isn´t saying anything really.
  • + 5
 I already typed up a comment in another thread about riding bikes with the new geo, not gonna repeat it here. BOttom line is not all of us are sold on it. One of the reasons I really like this bike is that the geo is a bit so called conservative. Honestly I wish I could buy this bike with 10mm less reach (I'm 5'11" albeit with a shorter (32") inseam). I feel the same way about the steep seat angles - I don't like the way it transfers load from my hams to the quads not to mention tends to give me a back ache, and for me I'm able to slide the seat forward enough even on a 73 SA to be plenty forward. And I consider myself a tech climbing specialist so its not like I wouldn't be looking for an advantage if I thought a really steep angle provided it.

Point being everyone has different wants in a bike, not everything needs to be 64HA, 75SA, 470mm reach and 44mm offset to be good.
  • - 2
 @preston67: if you are a "tech climbing specialist" you are not sitting on the seat for those climbs. So SA will not affect that type of climbing. Where it matter is long seated sitting. Thats where the benefit comes into play. I do agree that not every bike should be the same. I have a 150, and my measurements are almost exactly as yours are, but I wish it had another degree of steepness to it.
  • + 4
 @rzicc: Au contraire my friend most nasty climbing is sitting spiced with moves. I've seen people that can climb short sections of tech standing up it is one technique but they fatigue quickly and it doesn't work on the super steep. But that's a debate for another time.
  • + 10
 The brits are so hard to please ????
  • + 12
 True.
  • + 4
 @mikekazimer: should’ve given them a cup of tea and a slice of Victoria sponge and they’d have cheered up a bit, failing that go with a kebab and a can of stella Big Grin
  • + 8
 It's why Morrissey happened.
  • + 2
 @TheR: he doesn’t go much on kebabs, which explains a lot Smile
  • + 1
 @muggomagic: Was that Victoria sponge or Victoria's sponge? I get so confused.
  • + 5
 It lacks half a degree here and there.
It should have had the other shock.
The tires are wrong.
I've had to adjust something.
Climbs exceptionally well for what it is (what are those, not even the reviewers know: they seem to want all bikes to be DH but still climb well).
I can't believe it's better than the Yeti/SantaCruz, so it isn't.

*All the reviews.
  • + 6
 Oh shit, I just spent tons of cash for a Slash 29 and it turns out that in 1 year it's geometry came from bike of the year to useless conservative shit!!! Frown

Well at least it's pretty.
  • + 1
 Suck it up buddy, that's what I do with mine. Big Grin

Did your's come in British Racing Green like mine??
(the real reason why I bought it, geo and specs be damned - colour is where it is at in mountain biking) Wink
  • + 1
 @gnarterrorist: na, it's grey and black, 9,7. ;_;
  • + 5
 This reminds me of sport bike tests. They take them to the track and critique how they corner at 160 miles an hour. When the overwhelming majority of sport bikes spend their lives commuting back and forth to work each day and occasionally looking cool on Friday nights! Smile

What they should do is also do a "race version" with the grip2 and X2 with normal bar stem and DH tires and let the customer order it that way if they choose.

That way you can be all enduro-bra right off the salesroom floor if that's your jam. (Or if you actually spend more time racing than trail riding, etc.)
  • + 1
 Canyon actually used to sell their Strive enduro bike in a normal and race version, with the race version having burlier components and longer reach. They don't sell different versions anymore unfortunately.
  • + 8
 Only $7500? What is this, the cheapest bike in the test?
  • + 2
 The Pivot is $1,700 more expensive... the Devinci $1,500... And for what? Is it just a brand thing?
  • + 1
 @fullmetalski: i agree it dosent make much sense especially when the pivot still has xt brakes on it. just through on the saints!
  • + 3
 @fullmetalski: Carbon wheels is not a component thing?
  • + 1
 @gnarnaimo: forgot about that haha. there is your answer.
  • + 7
 I know right!? Since when did PB started reviewing for peasants? Cheap bikes like that should one be sold in walmart
  • + 0
 @gnarnaimo: those compensate somewhat for the high price. Saints or comparable brakes are to be expected for a hard hitting enduro bike at these prices though.
  • + 3
 @Mac1987: Codes directly compete with Saints and are spec'd more often on dh bikes than trail/enduro bikes... So...
  • + 1
 @gnarnaimo: I wasn't talking about the Ransom, but about the reference made to the Pivot running XT brakes, although I now see that it runs the dual piston version. That's perfectly fine, although for these prices I expect the best of the best (and yes, Codes are fine).
  • + 1
 @Mac1987: Well you did quite me, and I wasn't talking about the pivot.
  • + 6
 would have loved to see a Pole in the super enduro category. Seem to tick all the editors boxes...slack ha, very steep sa and long chainstays
  • + 11
 We weren't able to get one in time for the Field Test, but I've been putting the miles in on a Machine for a long term review. Look for that in the next couple of months.
  • + 1
 Ok! Looking forward to that
  • + 7
 Running mine with a Grip2 damper in the fork and X2 and it is superb
  • + 1
 the X2 on the ransom fits fine?
  • + 3
 My 910 just came in and I'll be swamping out the fork damper sometime in the next month or two as well. Curious how much of an improvement the X2 was, I was thoroughly impressed by the stock Nude TR when I demoed it.
  • + 1
 @Hejsa: Yes you just cant use the climb switch but it not necessary.
  • + 3
 @briceps: The Nude shock tune is great. The X2 is a great option for someone who does not want to fuss with the Twin Lock or wants to have more custom control over the shocks setup as the Nude shock has only rebound and the linear / progressive 2 position switch adjustment.
  • + 1
 @brolo: I'd love to see what coils are available for it. I don't plan on swapping out the rear but coils are just so sexy. I emailed Push and they said the 11-6 wouldn't fit.
  • + 1
 @briceps: is it enough progressive for a coil shock?
  • + 1
 @easyslorider: honestly no idea. My time on it was limited enough to not know for sure and I haven't been able to ride my 910 due to a bad injury. Without looking at the curves I would say from the reviews and my handful of runs it would work great with a coil, that being said it doesn't need it, coils are just rad.
  • + 3
 This 'new' Ransom looks like 15 other bikes on the market. Yawn. At least the original the had it's own look.

@Paul Aston: The old Ransom doesn't use a pull shock. You could swap the Equalizer 2 with something like an rp23 IIRC. The old Genius had the pull shock Equalizer 3.
  • + 1
 Came here to post this. It was just a very high-pressure push shock. I had to set mine at over 400psi (yeah 400) to keep a proper sag, and it kept leaking oil at that pressure. It was pretty awful! Had to swap out the frame eventually.
  • + 1
 @olijay: Somewhere around 385psi for me IIRC LoL The OG Ransom's were 165mm rear travel not 160mm as noted by the reviewer. But whatevs...
  • + 7
 Do they still sell bikes with Shimano? Every test had SRAM drive trains.
  • + 0
 haha they still do but eagle is the hottest thing right now so it makes sense to spec that so they can sell there bikes.
  • + 2
 I have the 19 genius I have swapped the fork out to a 36 with 160mm, 44mm offset. I still have the twinloc attached for the rear and use it all the time. The head angle is now at 64.5 as per the ransom and I prefer the bike massively to the patrol it replaced. Scott just need to dump the twinloc off the fork as it comprises it to much.
  • + 6
 What are all these "box's" everyone keeps wanting to tick?
  • - 4
flag bike2850 (Dec 20, 2018 at 12:29) (Below Threshold)
 they want a transition sentinel or patrol
  • + 10
 Ever had a tick in your box? No thanks!!!
  • + 1
 I'm intrigued. The only inline shock Fox sells is the DPS, which overheats on long descents. However, most people that have tried this bike don't mention overheating. Is this shock not based on the DPS? Does it have special cooling technology or a larger amount of damper oil?
  • + 2
 I feel like the tire complaint would be similar to bikes coming with pedals. Everyone wants something different so put something cheap and people can tailor them to their liking? Bike is siiiiick tho. Id love to have one
  • + 17
 Specing exo tires is just a way for the bike to look lighter on paper but anyone who is buying a 170mm bike is going to want something burlier.
  • + 5
 The exo and DD or DH versions of these tires are virtually the same price
  • + 5
 True, but if enough manufacturers read these reviews, we won't have to do an expensive tire swap on day 1 with our new bikes!
  • - 3
 Oh no! Tire swap for my new 7500 USD bike is soo expensive :**(
  • + 3
 What if every review the testers put on their choice tires to keep that factor constant.
  • + 2
 @Endurbro404: I like that idea. give a good or bad rating on the tires, and then put minions on everything
  • + 3
 My demo had the EXO PLUS casing on the rear. I thought this was the spec and not standard EXO?
  • + 4
 To summarise the category " it's not a pole or a nicolai/mojo so it sucks"
  • + 2
 Just want to say thanks for the great reviews. I really like how critical Alex and Paul are — they call it like they see it.
  • + 2
 I absolutely love my Ransom. My bike came with EXO+ casing tires which seem to be a perfect tire for an enduro bike from what I understand.
  • + 0
 This is getting silly. One thing is rider preference. However most of those who ride enduro bikes or compete in enduro don't use downhill tires, which is where DD tires stand in comparison with every enduro tire from every other brand. I have destroyed many enduro tires from many brands, but actually never an EXO. I don't want to see another remark against EXO tires being on the spec unless the testers actually destroy one...
  • - 1
 I've put 7+ patches in a rear 2.5 exo in a single season. Running 27-31psi on 30mm rim. I'm 185 wet.

Tire does not hold up to exposed rocky terrain like bigsky resort has.

No problems yet with DD

Why kind of terrain do your tires hold up on?
  • + 1
 @sam2222: This for example: photos.app.goo.gl/jhpJgSgiy9yeJ7uB9
Maybe it's not the most aggressive. I've never actually pinched in there. And maybe I haven't used EXO tires at the rear much. Now that I think about it the reviewer may have a point. It's just that all the races for the national enduro cup this year would have been fine with full EXO. I have pinched Schwalbe's SG tires at previous seasons and started using a DH tire at the rear because of that, and then moved to DD when it came out, but this year there really was no need, and the lighter the bike the better. So like I said, it depends. Maybe this bike could be considered overkill for the Portuguese enduro cup as well.
  • + 1
 @sam2222: Or maybe having 29" wheels and 170mm at both ends like I did this year actually lightens the impacts on the tires... A point to consider.
  • + 1
 @sam2222: I've been weighing around 200lbs+gear. Use 28-30psi at the rear, 23-26 at the front.
  • + 2
 Something apparently tamer than the photo I posted also destroyed me a Vittoria Martello tire this year. It all depends on how rocks line up. If a sharp edge is pointed at the tire it's done...
  • + 2
 I dunno. I'm going to hold out for a sub 30 pound 60 degree head angle single crown 200mm travel 29er before I start getting excited.
  • + 1
 Could just detach the forks lock out cable so it sits further in the travel while climbing? I loosened mine on my 2018 genius. Seemed to solve any problems regarding siting up high while climbing
  • + 1
 Yeah I loosen the barrel adjuster on the fork cable for most trail riding, but I tighten it up for longer endurance type rides and events. Anytime I stand up for pedaling it’s really nice to have less diving up front, a noticeable energy saver. 2018 Genius
  • + 1
 That is an awful of money for alloy wheels and mid level suspension. From all accounts this bike is an absolute machine, but just imagine this with a top spec 36, Coil shock, carbon wheels and some proper rubber...my word.
  • + 1
 I've won six cat2 enduro races on EXO front and back. Risky? Sure, but if you have core strength and can unweight the bike constantly then any rider can be the equivalent of a 120lb rider as they go over objects.
  • + 1
 I always get the vibe that Scott is holding back on really cutting loose on their bikes and playing it just a little too safe.
  • + 0
 Can someone please explain how a 10 year old metal ransom with 160mm travel weigh the same as the new one thats made of super expensive carbon everything? Wheres the progress?
  • + 2
 One the rolling parts are way more robust, and I would be willing to bet the new Ransom frame isn't worlds lighter, however, is sooo much stronger and stiffer.
  • + 1
 It didn't . Only the Ransom Ltd (full carbon) version got under 30lbs.
  • + 3
 They were absolutely shredding on that bike.
  • - 1
 no Float X2 (or even a piggyback for that matter), or Grip2 Damper for $7500??? I don't want to hear any more complaints about Yeti's pricing! Least with the 150 you get the best suspension (arguably) on the market right now. Scott is a way bigger company and could afford to make less and still sell a killer bike. Yes you get X01 vs GX but id rather have GX. Easier and cheaper to upgrade that than a fork or shock. Just my thoughts.
  • + 1
 X2 nor Grip2 enable the use of the twinloc setup. The new nude has ramp adjustment but an X2 shock and grip2 damper are entirely retro fittable.
  • + 2
 Seems like Paul definitely should have been on an XL given his preferences...
  • + 3
 So all the Super Enduro bikes suck...?
  • + 9
 Nah, they're all quite sick. Nothing's perfect though, and for the price they go for it's worth being detail-oriented.
  • + 2
 Not sure where you gathered that from. The devinci one was brutal tho.
  • + 1
 I think maybe...it's a culture thing with the Europeans. They just come across as stuffy and stiff to us. Have to read reviews from multiple sources to get a good feel for how a bike rides. Everyone has their own "preferences" even Pinkbike.
  • + 2
 I'd give my left nut for one of these
  • + 1
 I feel you @paulaston. I keep looking at his hands as well wondering what's going on!
  • + 2
 Did anyone notice the insane flex on the drop test?
  • + 2
 Dude obviously went to political address hand gesture school. Very pro.
  • + 2
 Codes the best brake... hahaha
  • + 2
 what is that integrated bar stem combo?
  • + 1
 Why would i need enough room for a coil shock and an air shock with a piggy back?
  • - 1
 because this shock will heat up over long descents. a coil eliminates that problem and a piggyback helps reduce that effect.
  • + 4
 @bike2850: mbr did a 12k meter descent Enduro race in their head to head review of the Ransom and the SB 150. They didn’t have a problem with the nude tr rear shock. They just wanted a grip2 damper 36 ????‍♂️
  • + 2
 @bike2850: whooooosh
  • + 0
 @sledshed: well then why aren’t any enduro pros ridding a dps shock? I guess the piggyback also comes with more adjustments which could be why the feel better as well.
  • + 2
 @bike2850: I'm not saying that piggyback shocks don't help control heat, more just that for one reason or another it doesn't seem to be as much of an issue with this particular shock. Seems like most reviews I'm reading/watching the shock feels great, the tune is good, the only reason most are complaining is the lack of compression adjustment.
  • + 2
 Nice looking bike but way out of my price range
  • + 1
 I've said it before and I'll say it again- Too many cables at the bar. Looks gross, seems gadgety. No thanks.
  • + 0
 Can you guys include whether the bikes are available as a frame only option? That plays a role of whether a bike is even on my radar.
  • + 1
 only in Tuned guise... HMX frame, nude TR, 36 and hixon bar.
The frameset only price is more than the full build HMF front/Alloy rear 910 though.
  • + 3
 check the website! takes less time than waiting for responses that you'll have to double check anyway....
  • + 2
 Not a single word about suspension performance while descending?
  • + 2
 i'm pretty sure that the old ransom did not have a pullshock system.
  • + 1
 It didn´t. Pullshock only came after on the Genius.
  • + 1
 Can anyone help me out? I'm not quite sure what the difference between the Grip 2 and the Fit 4 dampers are.
  • + 0
 the fit 4 daqmper only has low speed compresion adjustment,open,trail,and firm, and rebound. the grip 2 damper has low and high speed compression and low and high speed rebound. also i think the stroke is designed a bit different to give it a better feel even before you dial in the adjustments.
  • + 1
 @bike2850: larger negative spring which is why the top end is more sensitive. I think it also has a larger bottom out bumper.
  • + 1
 Why don't you let Paul talk haha. this bike looks sweet but to much bike specific product for my liking.
  • + 4
 Check out the Vital mtb review on this bike......
  • + 2
 @KillaK801: Yeah, seen that and the Vital mtb one.
  • + 2
 @KillaK801: yeah it is pretty sad when the Bike mag reviews on these bikes are better than Pinkbike (And include more bikes)
  • + 1
 @Bikerman36: same, I've ridden this one, and I had a similar experience with it as the Vital review. Really enjoyed this one.
  • + 2
 @Nathan6209: Yeah, I had a demo for one week in the Lake District. Awesome climber and DH. The demo had the new EXO + casing which I thought was standard on this bike?
  • + 1
 @Bikerman36: i think the exo plus might be the sweet spot for oem product. haven't tried them out for myself yet though...
  • + 1
 @alexcgevans is a camera hog. Smile
  • + 1
 Tempted with this one. Anyone else tried it?
  • + 2
 I have it and love it most capable bike I've ridden. My last two bikes were the new specialized enduro and a Nomad.
  • + 2
 twinloc is the shizal
  • + 0
 I'm guessing Firebird, Ransom, Spartan as the pecking order for the PB testers.
  • - 1
 Love these first impression quick reviews but I’d like to see them in a larger spread of bikes, not just enduro rigs.
More trail/AM bikes please?
  • + 1
 Looks to be channeling a slack angled "Norco Sight" Smile
  • - 2
 29er in a small size? Why even bother? Too tall for small riders and their too small for medium and big riders! I’ve never seen a review on a small 29er, ever!
  • + 5
 29ers seem to work well in small size for the xc and ews professionals.
  • + 3
 The wheels go over the ground, they interact with the ground. The ground doesn't change depending on the rider's height. A small size 29er makes just as much sense as an XL 29er if you can get the geometry to work right for the rider without compromising it. The only reason not to have large wheels on a size small would be if you end up with toe overlap or too much stack height or something like that.

Do people seriously still think that rider height and wheelsize are in any way related? It isn't 2007 anymore.
  • + 1
 The random is handsome
  • + 1
 Random comment
  • + 0
 Sounds like y’all need to ride a Transition Sentinel.
  • + 0
 Deja-vu
  • - 3
 I thought in real life no one rode 29ers with anything in mind but pedalling. But I must be wrong bacause all the reviews are for 29ers... Oh Frown
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