Got it built on Saturday and took it out for the inaugural ride on Sunday - 24 miles with just over 2000 feet of climbing. Sorry, no trail pictures, next time....
Trail included fire road and single track, some switchbacks and logs, no drops or big jumps.
I'm impressed - it rides like a couch compared to the Epic, plus the seating position is a lot more laid back, which I like. The seatpost lowered about an inch during the ride and when I went to tighten it the black plastic thingy broke.
The Vanilla front fork (130mm borrowed from a friend) sure rides well. It seems like a nice match for the RP23 and the bike. A little more travel and I think I might be there. Don't know if I'm going the Talas route - the Vanilla is sooo plush. Everyone that comments about the Vanilla and some that switch seem to regret it. Honestly I didn't feel like I needed to lower the front end - even on the 15% plus grades - and I have like 8 spacers on there.
I did notice some odd creaking when really hammering on the cranks. I think it maybe because I don't have the correct number of spacers on the XTR cranks and need one or two more links in the chain. I will address those and see if makes a difference.
Also need to watch the bb height - through a couple rocky areas it was close.
Best part was the climbing - for a bike with almost 6 inches of travel it should not climb this well. I didn't even use the pro-pedal - no need in my opinion. I set the sag to about 20% and off I went.
Overall I think this bike will be great for 90% of the riding we do - climbing, single track, bombing down the hills, etc... Not sure if it will be something I'd take to Downieville or not, we'll see (anyone here done this?)
One more thing - Nokons are perfect for this bike. It allows you to route cables however you want. Takes some patience to get them together, but it works and looks fantastic.
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Thread: First ride impressions - Mojo