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  1. #1
    Long Live Long Rides
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    XCL 6 month check-up

    I have had my XCL since April and it has been through quite a bit of riding. Until August I was in Tacoma Washington riding rooty soft forest trails, and since then have moved to Grand Junction,CO where rocks are the rule.
    Verdict: The XCL is a great bike for handling anything I can throw at it. I have been fortunate enough with our relocation to get to ride 3-4 times per week in Grand Junction, Fruita, and the surrounding mountains. The only thing I changed from my original build (A little upgrade...) is that I have given in to my forbidden love of bar ends. They are just like that girl in High school: They're not cool, and everyone makes fun of me for staying with her, but they feel just right. But I digress...

    I did drop the rear pressure 5 lbs and the front 10 lbs to help with the rocks out here, and I am amazed at how well the XCL soaks them up. Even more amazing is how this bike climbs (especially with my ugly bar ends!). As long as I can keep turning the cranks, it holds traction and rolls up and over the horrible lines I choose. It actually seems to glue loose rocks to the trail for better grip!

    Since much of my riding lately has been checking out new trails I can easily say that I can't think of a better bike to handle the unknown. Up, down, rocks, roots, tight and twisty, or swoopy singletrack, this bike really handles it all verry well.

    A couple of pics (not riding, sorry - I'm on my own most of the time)
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Spin-stabilized
    Reputation: bailout's Avatar
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    Nice little set of pictures

    Thanks for sharing. The second pic looks like a fun section. How did the XCL handle it? Where you wishing it was slacker up front or was it just right? I think I'm getting an XCL and not an EVO. I just love epics and I'm too light to haul the EVO around all day. That way, when I get a park bike, It will be one without compromise .
    Hey man, wanna go for a klunk?

  3. #3
    Long Live Long Rides
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    Honestly, I still walk that section. I have figured out the line for about half of it, but it's still too much at once for me.
    I come from a pretty XC back ground so the XCL feels good to me. WIth the fork at 140mm I start to feel more slackness than I like for anything pointed up. I spend almost all my time in 120 with quick changes to 140 when I know I'm headed down for a while. I think the XCL would be a very good epic bike: Nimble enough to be good fun.

  4. #4
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    I've had mine 6 months too! I've changed the brakes from Shimano XT to Magura Louise FR, a shorter stem, and bigger rotors. I've ended up doing quite a bit of DH and it's awesome. I haven't felt like I've needed a bigger bike yet!

    But maybe if I had bar ends like those, I'd like to climb a bit more!!!

  5. #5
    Surfing trails
    Reputation: Nevegal's Avatar
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    Those look like great places to ride. For bar ends try the Cane Creek Ergo - they fit on the very ends of the bar and are ergonomically shaped to fit your palm. And when using them the heel of your hand and your wrist will be behind the bar and your thumb and knuckles will be a little in front of the bar. It sounds funny to try to explain but they are oh so comfortable!! Once I tried them I never wanted to go back to basic "cow horn" bar ends.

    And yes the XCL is becoming my do-it-all trail bike. Mine is just a few grams shy of 30 lbs. but I can toss it around very well and feel so confident on it! I have a 130mm fork on it and when I hit the lockout and make sure I have the ProPedal on the RP23 engaged I can climb as good as I can on my hardtail that is 4 lbs. lighter! The XCL is one awesome bike!!

  6. #6
    Long Live Long Rides
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    versitility

    I just think it's great that using the same frame I use for XC you can go into downhill. How do you like the Louises? The ones on my tandem have a persistant rub.

  7. #7
    Long Live Long Rides
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    Cane creek

    I dig the cane creeks. My wife uses them on the back of our Ventana tandem and loves them (and they don't gouge the backs of my legs!) I actually like the forward position my ugly LP's allow for tough climbs and for stretching out on flat roads and trails. It's funny: Until I tried the bar ends with this bike, I wouldn't have thought a 120mm fork would climb well.

  8. #8
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    Slight rear rub

    Quote Originally Posted by Trails4Two
    I just think it's great that using the same frame I use for XC you can go into downhill. How do you like the Louises? The ones on my tandem have a persistant rub.
    I originally only wanted them due to the pink dangerboy levers. My rear rubs a bit...but it just needs another shim, which I can't find. I think the original pads wore weird too, so they need replacement.

    I'm not the best downhiller...I need brakes that stop when I want them to. With the shimanos I sometimes needed the death grip to make them stop...but the maguras are one fingered braking all the time....for that, I can deal with the odd rub.

    I'm tempted by 2-piston brakes...but I've heard horror stories of them.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bailout
    I think I'm getting an XCL and not an EVO. I just love epics and I'm too light to haul the EVO around all day. That way, when I get a park bike, It will be one without compromise .
    I think you'll be happy with that solution. I'm a bigger guy so the heavier Evo isn't a problem on long rides, but I just put a short stem and riser bars on her to make her more "park", and I'm definitely paying a price on climbs. When I go to Tahoe to hit up some epics involving long climbs, I'm putting the long stem and maybe flat bars back on.

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