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  1. #1
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    Rode a Turner Spot today (vs. Motolite)

    I tried a buddy 5 Spot today. A medium 06 with a DHX air, Vanilla fork, all kinds of light Shimano bling, Gravity Dropper, and big tires (2.4 enduro front and 2.35 Nevegal rear). Boy, was I impressed. That thing was plush! It handled the bumps really well (tires certainly helped quite a bit), jumped very nicely (all 5" off the ground that I was able to muster ) and ate up the rocks.

    The geometry of the cockpit was really spot on and did not take any time getting used to. The part that impressed me the most was the climbing ability of the bike (again the tires helped). I'm used to dialing my Talas down on steep climbs on my Motolite, whereas on the Spot I was able to clear some nice techy steep climbs by simply moving my butt forward. While a Talas fork would have been nice, I was able to do without it. For a sit and spin guy like me, the bike is damn near perfect.

    Compared to my Motolite, the bike was defnitely slower (I also use smaller tubeless tires) and it was not as efficient to stand up and mash. If I had to compare, I'd say that the Motolite is quicker and the Spot is plusher (we're talking subtle nuances here, and I ride a small Motolite with a 1.5" stroke RP23) and seems a better climber on the techy stuff.

    As a disclaimer, this is just a very average rider's opinion.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  2. #2
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    cool "short review", zorg!

    thanks!

  3. #3
    not so super...
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    Sounds about right to me
    Nothing to see here.

  4. #4
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    Nice mini-review, zorg! The Spot is a great bike. My buddy has a 5 spot with a Pushed RP3 that I was able to take for a spin and the plushness was just unbelievable. I found it to pedal very well and climb tech stuff with ease. I felt at home on the bike....

  5. #5
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    Nice Review

    One note on your review.... Tires make an enormous difference to the ride and feel of a bike. If you have a chance, try the Spot with the same (or similar) tires that you use on your Moto Lite. I've owned a Spot for a few years. When I put smaller tires on it, it feels like a completely different bike.... quicker... and a better climber.

    I still prefer the grip and cush that I get from bigger tires, but do yourself a favor and try the Spot with the smaller tires before you make up your mind about the two.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Shorts
    Nice Review

    One note on your review.... Tires make an enormous difference to the ride and feel of a bike. If you have a chance, try the Spot with the same (or similar) tires that you use on your Moto Lite. I've owned a Spot for a few years. When I put smaller tires on it, it feels like a completely different bike.... quicker... and a better climber.

    I still prefer the grip and cush that I get from bigger tires, but do yourself a favor and try the Spot with the smaller tires before you make up your mind about the two.
    That's a great point. Actually, during the summer, I use a Weiwolf 2.55LT, so I'm somewhat used to a big balloony front tire. The rear would definitely need to be swapped to my regular Nevegal to have a more meaningful comparison though.

    Sorry to everyone for the mini review. I'm not one to analyze every detail of the bike. All I know is that I got on it, it felt good and the cockpit worked for me. Plus, it's hard over 2 hours to figure out every little nuance.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  7. #7
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    I'l second what Blue Shorts said (it looks like you tried his bike). I seen your Motolite setup (SB8 2.1) and have ridden Endure/Nevegal tires myself.

    Nevegals one of the slowest tires with Enduro only being one of those tires that managed to get slower than Nevegals. Even while using Enduro on the front I noticed it's slowing down bike quite a lot. SB8 on another hand is one of the fastest tires that still has a grip

    On the free-rolling downhill test I did with 2 setups I got following (no cranking just gravity rolling)
    Enduro/Nev combo - 24mph at the buttom
    Resolution/SB8 combo - 32mph

    Also Vanilla fork is quite heavy.
    I used to run tubes like you are, but then I got thorn in my wheel.

  8. #8
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    Yup. My impresion too.
    Motolite is quicker and the Spot is plusher and seems a better climber on the techy stuff.

    The new Spot has more travel 5.5 vs 5.0 for the MotoLite.

    With very rare exception, suspension geometry with snappier acceleration reaction breaks traction easier.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stalk
    I'l second what Blue Shorts said (it looks like you tried his bike). I seen your Motolite setup (SB8 2.1) and have ridden Endure/Nevegal tires myself.

    Nevegals one of the slowest tires with Enduro only being one of those tires that managed to get slower than Nevegals. Even while using Enduro on the front I noticed it's slowing down bike quite a lot. SB8 on another hand is one of the fastest tires that still has a grip

    On the free-rolling downhill test I did with 2 setups I got following (no cranking just gravity rolling)
    Enduro/Nev combo - 24mph at the buttom
    Resolution/SB8 combo - 32mph

    Also Vanilla fork is quite heavy.
    The SB8 is the summer tire, which I swapped right after our ride for a Nevegal 2.1. I used J's bike (thanks J), and he runs tubes in his tires, whereas I run mine all tubeless. I managed to use all the travel of the DHX-air at Skeggs, even with the big Nevie.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  10. #10
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    Cool.

    Where are the photos ?~?

  11. #11
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    Indeed it is a rather slow bike

    Your review is just about right on with my experience. The Spot is plush and it is a good technical climber: at crawling speeds and in steps, roots and rocks it works well. On the other end when compared to other bikes, it is not as quick and it suffers uphill in less technical terrain.

    I sold my 5-spot last year mostly because I was disappointed by its performance both uphill and anywhere when some quick accelleration was required. I had a Push Rp3 on it that helped when set in the the stiffest position but not enough. In the plush position the Push Rp3 was a pleasure to fool around and try some nutty uphill stuff, but you simply could not use it for efficient extended trail riding. I used 2.1 to 2.25 tires in the back.

  12. #12
    FM
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    Both fine bikes. Ultimately I think the motolite compares more directly to the Turner Flux (which is lighter). The motolite is kind of a weird combo, it's 5" and has the tubing which can take the abuse, yet the geometry, suspension feel and tire clearance are more XC-oriented.

    Motolite is awesome for epic XC, enduro's or racing, as well as general trail riding. I think it's best built up with a 130mm fork, air shock and light parts. I loved the snappy climbing and durability of my motolite, and I liked the TT/ST lengths. I wish the head angle was 1-2 degrees slacker.

    The 5-spot is a better descender, has more tire clearance, and lower/slacker geometry. You can push the build well up into the mid 30lb range, and the frame will still not be the limiting factor. If you ride everything but live for the downhills, the 5-spot rules. Turner customer service is also awesome.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    Both fine bikes. Ultimately I think the motolite compares more directly to the Turner Flux (which is lighter). The motolite is kind of a weird combo, it's 5" and has the tubing which can take the abuse, yet the geometry, suspension feel and tire clearance are more XC-oriented.

    Motolite is awesome for epic XC, enduro's or racing, as well as general trail riding. I think it's best built up with a 130mm fork, air shock and light parts. I loved the snappy climbing and durability of my motolite, and I liked the TT/ST lengths. I wish the head angle was 1-2 degrees slacker.

    The 5-spot is a better descender, has more tire clearance, and lower/slacker geometry. You can push the build well up into the mid 30lb range, and the frame will still not be the limiting factor. If you ride everything but live for the downhills, the 5-spot rules. Turner customer service is also awesome.
    And that's why I plan on keeping the Motolite as a 4" light bike for those climbing/racing days. The Spot would still be built with air shocks but will definitely be for the technical riding days.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  14. #14
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    The 2006 and older Spots would feel a bit sluggish sometimes when compared to a more firmly suspended bike. That and the low BB were why I never bought one. That said, I have ridden a PUSH tuned (with rockers) and it was way more nimble than the stock one so my initial plan was to get a 2006 and mod it with PUSH rockers and a PUSH tune. But then the 2007 came out and I was given an opportunity to cut past the waiting line.

    The 2007 Spot is a bit snappier and more nimble but has not lost any technical abilities and has saved me a couple of times. I think the firmer ML still pedals a bit quicker than the 2007 Spot but I only truly need help in the really steep or really rocky climbs, where the Spot excels. I ride with guys on ASRs too so it isn't like I'll have the most efficient bike in the group- ever. I'm still thinking of having my Pike and RP23 tuned by PUSH but it's an expensive experiment.

    I certainly would not mind having a 26 lb Moto to complement my 30 lb Spot. You would hear no complaints from me- ever

    One odd thing I have noticed- the HL Spots were less sensitive to rear shock air pressure. It seems to me that the post-HL Spots have a smaller sweet spot or less of a range where they work the best. I have it dialed in now but it takes more work and time- it's either too firm or too plush and almost sluggish. Once you get in that 5-6 psi range, it rides amazingly well and you don't think about the shock at all. The older HL Spot seemed to work well in more than double the psi range. I could be at 160 or 170 and it would still be in the sweet spot- just a tiny bit firmer or plusher. The change in psi results in a bigger feel difference now. It's just an observation I wanted to share in case anyone feels the same way.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    ....

    The 5-spot is a better descender, has more tire clearance, and lower/slacker geometry. You can push the build well up into the mid 30lb range, and the frame will still not be the limiting factor. ......

    mmm.... why is Turner fretting over a 36 on a Spot then (the headtube I believe) ?~?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    mmm.... why is Turner fretting over a 36 on a Spot then (the headtube I believe) ?~?
    purpose...same reason as the ML can't use a fork over 145mm.... the riding "that comes with the fork" is not what it's designed to do... of course..a lot of us use big forks for more comfort at speed...not hucks... but it is easy to see why there are limits on these things...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by crisillo
    purpose...same reason as the ML can't use a fork over 145mm.... the riding "that comes with the fork" is not what it's designed to do... of course..a lot of use use big forks for more comfort at speed...not hucks... but it is easy to see why there are limits on these things...
    geez, you got wiser with moderation

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    geez, you got wiser with moderation

  19. #19
    "El Whatever"
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    Nice review, Zorg!!
    Check my Site

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warp
    Nice review, Zorg!!
    hey you got replaced by Rapid Edward on the Titi forum !~!

    Great to see you taking care of Giant

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    mmm.... why is Turner fretting over a 36 on a Spot then (the headtube I believe) ?~?

    Yeah, definitely an intended use thing, in my opinion. I do see a few with 36s but if those riders are running them at 160 all the time, they should probably be on a RFX. Sometimes I'm tempted to put on a 36 for those gnarly descents where I get closer to praying/cursing real fast but maybe I'll just avoid them altogether or bail on a few drops

    I'm getting too old to start eyeing 3'-4' drops and I'll prob be safer on an all-carbon XC machine with 30mm of spacers on a QR fork and Arch wheels.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    Yeah, definitely an intended use thing, in my opinion. I do see a few with 36s but if those riders are running them at 160 all the time, they should probably be on a RFX. Sometimes I'm tempted to put on a 36 for those gnarly descents where I get closer to praying/cursing real fast but maybe I'll just avoid them altogether or bail on a few drops

    I'm getting too old to start eyeing 3'-4' drops and I'll prob be safer on an all-carbon XC machine with 30mm of spacers on a QR fork and Arch wheels.

    I'm putting a 36 on an Endorphin

    I'm getting too old to ride an All Carbon Mountain XC machine with a QR flexy fork (in other words my skills are decreasing and I need a big stiff fork to compensate ).

  23. #23
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    I am considering taking another approach. I may need to be on a bike that will collapse on a drop over two feet. It also needs to flex three inches to either side when taking ahard turn. That way, the flex and the collapse factor will make me ride safe and stick to 12" drops only.

    By the way, that Endorphin is sweet and deserves the 36, knowing how tough that frame is to begin with. Knolly is another company that refines a solid design and build some fantastic bikes instead of playing around with fancy gibberish. However, I hear it is a very active design as well. You did very well in choosing that bike

  24. #24
    FM
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    mmm.... why is Turner fretting over a 36 on a Spot then (the headtube I believe) ?~?
    I think one distinction is the 5-spot feels pretty good with a fox 36 (or similar) fork, while the motolite geometry gets kinda whacked out.

    It's not really a good area of comparison, since neither bike was really designed to run 160mm forks

    But I think the difference is in the BB height and head angle. The 5-spot has a low BB, slap a 160mm fork on there and the bike becomes slack, but not too tall. The motolite has a taller BB and steeper angles, with a big fork it just ended up feeling tippy and nervous to me. I drink alot of coffee, that combined with the motolite and a tall fork, lets just say I rode off trail a few times.

  25. #25
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    The wheelbase may also be longer that the ML. I haven't looked into the difference but I would think there is at least an inch or 1.5" longer wheelbase on the Spot. Of course, someone will probably come by and prove me wrong in a minute.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    I think one distinction is the 5-spot feels pretty good with a fox 36 (or similar) fork, while the motolite geometry gets kinda whacked out.

    It's not really a good area of comparison, since neither bike was really designed to run 160mm forks

    But I think the difference is in the BB height and head angle. The 5-spot has a low BB, slap a 160mm fork on there and the bike becomes slack, but not too tall. The motolite has a taller BB and steeper angles, with a big fork it just ended up feeling tippy and nervous to me. I drink alot of coffee, that combined with the motolite and a tall fork, lets just say I rode off trail a few times.

    I sold my ML for the same reasons you did. Some whisky in the coffee helps .

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    I sold my ML for the same reasons you did. Some whisky in the coffee helps .
    just some?

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    I am considering taking another approach. I may need to be on a bike that will collapse on a drop over two feet. It also needs to flex three inches to either side when taking ahard turn. That way, the flex and the collapse factor will make me ride safe and stick to 12" drops only.

    By the way, that Endorphin is sweet and deserves the 36, knowing how tough that frame is to begin with. Knolly is another company that refines a solid design and build some fantastic bikes instead of playing around with fancy gibberish. However, I hear it is a very active design as well. You did very well in choosing that bike


    Thanks Flyer.

    I can't wait to see how the Endorphin goes with the Roco TST Air .

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    Some whisky in the coffee helps .
    Agreed... That's why I have a nice flask of Scotch here in my desk's drawers...

    Maybe that's why Col. Eddie replaced my arse at Titus.
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  30. #30
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    This jewel dusts turners, motolites, and leaves Giants in a trance!

  31. #31
    FM
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    I sold my ML for the same reasons you did. Some whisky in the coffee helps .
    Would be interesting to compare the effects of whiskey vs. beer

    The Endorphin is a great choice! I've had the pleasure of riding with Noel a few times and talking bikes, the guy can ride and he's super nice to boot. On top of all that, he's about the most knowledgable dude I've ever met when it comes to bikes. Stoked to see your new rig and hear you report...

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    Would be interesting to compare the effects of whiskey vs. beer

    The Endorphin is a great choice! I've had the pleasure of riding with Noel a few times and talking bikes, the guy can ride and he's super nice to boot. On top of all that, he's about the most knowledgeable dude I've ever met when it comes to bikes. Stoked to see your new rig and hear you report...
    Thanks mate. I made the big long spreadsheets and comparisons of who knows how many bikes, but could not look past Knolly at the end of the day. I think the medium Endorphin geometry will fit me well. I had a fleeting moment where I thought I should have got a Delirium T, but ended up going with an Endorphin with a 36 Talas RC2 and Roco TST Air.

    A single malt works best for high stakes nerves. Beer suites fast DH runs.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    Thanks mate. I made the big long spreadsheets and comparisons of who knows how many bikes, but could not look past Knolly at the end of the day. I think the medium Endorphin geometry will fit me well. I had a fleeting moment where I thought I should have got a Delirium T, but ended up going with an Endorphin with a 36 Talas RC2 and Roco TST Air.

    A single malt works best for high stakes nerves. Beer suites fast DH runs.
    Dingo, what's that stuff in your avatar?
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warp
    Dingo, what's that stuff in your avatar?

    Fo's intense DH tire on the scale

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warp
    Dingo, what's that stuff in your avatar?
    Remember the heady days when Fo was building up his RFX (and rebuilding it) ?~?

    And, he got an idea in his head that he needed 3lb 2-ply tyres on it ... and it came to fruition.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by crisillo
    Fo's intense DH tire on the scale
    Fo counting grams???

    How goes that line??? "Counting grams is sooo ghey"??
    Check my Site

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warp
    Fo counting grams???

    How goes that line??? "Counting grams is sooo ghey"??
    Who else would put 2-Ply tyres on a scale

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warp
    Fo counting grams???

    How goes that line??? "Counting grams is sooo ghey"??
    of course it is ghey..and that's why Fo weighed them to prove that he was an un-ghey non-weight weenie..... which worked exactly as a double negation does

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    Who else would put 2-Ply tyres on a scale
    ditto

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by All Mountain
    Who else would put 2-Ply tyres on a scale


    Nobody's as ghey... I should have known better...
    Check my Site

  41. #41
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    That was awesome. Fo only got that RFX because everyone else was buying one at cheap. I really like Fo, though probably not as much as tscheezy does.

  42. #42
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    Comparisons

    Quote Originally Posted by zorg
    I tried a buddy 5 Spot today. A medium 06 with a DHX air, Vanilla fork, all kinds of light Shimano bling, Gravity Dropper, and big tires (2.4 enduro front and 2.35 Nevegal rear). Boy, was I impressed. That thing was plush! It handled the bumps really well (tires certainly helped quite a bit), jumped very nicely (all 5" off the ground that I was able to muster ) and ate up the rocks.

    The geometry of the cockpit was really spot on and did not take any time getting used to. The part that impressed me the most was the climbing ability of the bike (again the tires helped). I'm used to dialing my Talas down on steep climbs on my Motolite, whereas on the Spot I was able to clear some nice techy steep climbs by simply moving my butt forward. While a Talas fork would have been nice, I was able to do without it. For a sit and spin guy like me, the bike is damn near perfect.

    Compared to my Motolite, the bike was defnitely slower (I also use smaller tubeless tires) and it was not as efficient to stand up and mash. If I had to compare, I'd say that the Motolite is quicker and the Spot is plusher (we're talking subtle nuances here, and I ride a small Motolite with a 1.5" stroke RP23) and seems a better climber on the techy stuff.

    As a disclaimer, this is just a very average rider's opinion.
    If may want to try the same tires on the Moto, not to mention the fork. What size was the Turner? Sounds like you're having fun and that's whats important.
    J.O.R.B.A. More than just tm. WWW.JORBA.ORG

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    I really like Fo, though probably not as much as tscheezy does.
    I'm perfectly willing to make this a competitive thing.
    My video techniques can be found in this thread.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by tscheezy
    I'm perfectly willing to make this a competitive thing.
    ok, can we add Blackie to the list ?~?

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by zorg
    And that's why I plan on keeping the Motolite as a 4" light bike for those climbing/racing days. The Spot would still be built with air shocks but will definitely be for the technical riding days.
    Time to drop the Mojo card: Instead of having 2 bikes you just need one. It is called a Mojo, it is designed to run either a 140 or a 160 fork (check out this thread for a Lyrik Mojo http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.ph...92#post3688792, you can use a Fox 36 that is one of the forks endorsed by IBIS, or a Marz 55 or DT 150) and can be used as a great climbing/racing day bike or as serious AM just by switching the fork. Compared to my 5-spot there is simply no comparison, way faster and better climbing, great downhiller with absolute neutral riding

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    This review sounds pretty spot on to me. Of all the bikes I've ridden, the Moto is definitely no where near the plushest, which is odd since most of the other horst link bikes I've ridden have been pretty cushy. Especially my friends' Stumpjumper FSR. But The Moto just does its job despite that.

  47. #47
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    I'll add another review to this thread. I rode/demoed a 2008 Yeti 575 today at the local loop (Soquel Demo Forest). It had a bunch of XT-XTR parts, RP23 and a Float fork. The bike was nice and light, and rolled really well. I also really liked the cockpit with its short top tube and wide bars. However, I really did not like the rear suspension. It always felt too harsh and not sensitive to small bumps. Coming back to the parking lot, we checked the sag (about 25%) and took off some air pressure, but I still could not get that plush feeling. It's really too bad as otherwise, the bike felt really good (okay, I really hated the Yeti saddle, but that's a personal thing). Anyway, my take away is that the 575 is really a long legged XC bike. Not a bad bike by any means, but not the bike for me, especially not after riding a Spot.

    On a separate note, I took the Ibis Mojo for a 2mns ride in the dirt parking lot, and that thing feld way plusher. Obviously, I would need more seat time to make a personal opinion, but it felt pretty good. It'd be nice to take it for a real spin, and see how it feels on the downhill. Anyway, next bike I want to demo is a Blur LT2 at Downieville this summer.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by zorg
    I'll add another review to this thread. I rode/demoed a 2008 Yeti 575 today at the local loop (Soquel Demo Forest). It had a bunch of XT-XTR parts, RP23 and a Float fork. The bike was nice and light, and rolled really well. I also really liked the cockpit with its short top tube and wide bars. However, I really did not like the rear suspension. It always felt too harsh and not sensitive to small bumps. Coming back to the parking lot, we checked the sag (about 25%) and took off some air pressure, but I still could not get that plush feeling. It's really too bad as otherwise, the bike felt really good (okay, I really hated the Yeti saddle, but that's a personal thing). Anyway, my take away is that the 575 is really a long legged XC bike. Not a bad bike by any means, but not the bike for me, especially not after riding a Spot.

    .
    did the 575 feel harsh both with propedal on and off?

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by crisillo
    did the 575 feel harsh both with propedal on and off?
    Yep. I feel bad about my negative review since the Yeti folks were really nice. I'm sure that others with more experience on the bike will chime in with more complete reviews.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  50. #50
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    Couple more reviews:

    In June I rode (mostly downhill) a Santa Cruz BLT2. It felt way too firm on the small stuff, but was very well balanced and took the big hits really well. It'd be perfect for somebody who wants a firm trail bike.

    Today, I rode the Ibis Mojo (an SX model) for a few miles, going up a steep fireroad and going down a rocky single track. Gotta agree with everybody that the Mojo rides lighter than it is. On the buff parts, the bike feels like it's easy to pump and really carry the momentum well. On the rocky bits, it did not seem as stable, nothing bad, but I would say that it'd be a tad less stable than the Motolite or Spot. On the uphill techy bit ,that bike floats (very sweet). The Mojo seems like it's begging for a 150 fork on the downhill. Overall, tons of fun and a very plush ride.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

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