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  1. #1
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    GF"s New Warden...



    My GF got her first trail ride in on the new [to her] Warden frame. Parts were swapped across from a 2014 Pivot Mach 6. AFAIK the Warden is the same vintage.

    So far she's liking it, but she is still getting adjusted to the new bike.



    We are headed out for one of the longer AM rides in our area tomorrow and I'll be riding with her so I'll have a better handle on how the bike is working for her.

    She wanted a bigger frame for more DH confidence so she went from a small Mach 6 to a medium Warden. To give you an idea of the difference the Warden is as long or longer than my large Mach 6.

    We also bumped her fork from 150mm [was closer to 140mm due to a problem with the negative spring and the low pressures she runs] to 160mm.

    We also put a 2.8" tire on the front of the bike which slacks it out and makes her line choice a little less crucial.



    She's going to ride the Warden for the rest of 2016 and then she'll either decide to keep it, go back to her Mach 6 or try another bike.

    We set the bike up in "high" mode to start with as we tend to have pedal strike issues on our trails.



    The Warden frame [w/ seatcollar + axle + HS cups + CCDBA w/ CS] = ~7.9lbs. Her Mach 6 was ~6.9lbs...so 1lb difference which is not bad.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  2. #2
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    Nice upgrade. I've never been a fan of Pivot fit, but I'm also on the tall end of the spectrum. If my GF keeps progressing as she has over the past year, we'll be shopping for a new Knolly for her next season. After showing her pics of D Mutton's carbon Warden, she wants one...bad move on my part.

  3. #3
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    Not if it means you get one too!!

    Build looks great, hope she likes it! Keep us updated.

  4. #4
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    I've been keen on a Knolly for a while. I've almost got a Knolly a couple times now, but didn't quite happen. With a limited bike budget/garage buying a gratuitous bling bike isn't possible. So I am glad we have one in the house finally.

    Although I have geeked out on online photos and ridden with a few Knolly's over the last couple years until I've had this Warden frame in the house I haven't had a good opportunity to really appreciate all the design details Noel and gang incorporate.

    I've got an engineering degree and do QA/QC work at an aerospace composite manufacturer. It's the little details of being done right that make me happy. This Warden frame is well made and the external cable routing has restored my faith in the bike industry.

    I know carbon is all the rage, but a nicely shaped and welded metal frame is a thing of beauty.

    If I did have money to burn one experiment I would like to try is buying AL and carbon Warden frames then build then up with the exact same high end parts kit and ride 'em to tease out the specific differences in how the materials affect the ride. I'm not sure I wouldn't end up preferring the metal frame.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  5. #5
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    My local dealer is on a Carbon Warden and he says it 30% better. He also wants me to demo the ElevenSix shock. I must stay away from him.

    Great looking Warden, and I'm curious as to how the 2.8 will work out on the front.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    Great looking Warden, and I'm curious as to how the 2.8 will work out on the front.
    She's been riding the 2.8" on the Pivot for a few weeks. So far she loves it. Better roll over, more plush ride and more point 'n shoot on the downs. That tire weighs around the same as the 2.4" we took off and she is feeling faster up and down.

    Also slacks out the bike and raises the BB a touch.

    The main downside so far is that the lower ground pressure makes for sketchy traction when you have a slippery surface you have to penetrate to get to sticky stuff that will grip. I suspect she will go back to a 2.4" for PNWet winter riding.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  7. #7
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    6" Reverb installed. Fits great.

    We are off for 4 days of camping and riding at Powell River so it will get a solid test run.

    GF has decided to sell the Mach 6. She'll either keep the Warden or try something else at the end of the year. I asked her if she was enjoying the tech downhills on the Warden and she said yes....so we are making progress.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  8. #8
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    Four days of camping and riding sounds like heaven...

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post


    6" Reverb installed. Fits great.

    We are off for 4 days of camping and riding at Powell River so it will get a solid test run.

    GF has decided to sell the Mach 6. She'll either keep the Warden or try something else at the end of the year. I asked her if she was enjoying the tech downhills on the Warden and she said yes....so we are making progress.
    That cable routing looks different.

  10. #10
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    Glad to hear she is enjoying the DH. I saw a blue Warden in the shop yesterday and it looks great in person.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  11. #11
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    Except the small weight penalty 99% from the riders won't feel any advantage with the carbon frame on the Alu' one
    Your bank manager and your LBS will feel and love the difference

  12. #12
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    Vikb, what is her height and inseam?

    Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by syntheticreality View Post
    Vikb, what is her height and inseam?


    5'6". Not sure about the inseam. I'll try and find out.

    Side profile riding shot may answer your question.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by F.N.G View Post
    That cable routing looks different.
    What looks different?
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    What looks different?
    You ran the cables under the top tube to the rockers, then back to the seat stay. Most run them down the down tube then loop them up to the rocker and to the seat stays. No biggie. I'm sure it'll work fine as long as it doesn't rub on the shock during compression.
    I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth...
    Isaiah 58:14

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  16. #16
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    My GF and her crew on the Powell River BC Bike Race course.

    She was pretty happy with the Warden last weekend. The PR trails are a lot more XC than we are used to at home. It's great we live in a time where 6" travel AM bikes can hang with a trail bike and not feel like you brought a chainsaw to a knife fight.

    GF wants to tweak her suspension a bit more. She's on the low end of the weight range for suspension so it's a bit of a challenge to get it dialled as well as she'd like. I've got some ideas we'll try this coming weekend.



    Life is tough in coastal BC.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  17. #17
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    A wee update. We spent the weekend riding in Cumberland BC. On the ride home the GF told me she wants to sell her Mach 6 and keep the Warden.

    She even got excited and said she might sell her SC Nomad 26er winter bike. I told her not to get hasty. Having a back up bike for uninterrupted riding if the Warden has a mechanical is a good thing.

    On one ride there were 2 other Wardens in the group so she got to enjoy some Knolly stoke.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  18. #18
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    Glad she's loving it! Have you been able to spend any time on it?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post
    Glad she's loving it! Have you been able to spend any time on it?
    No. One she wouldn't let me, but also I am pretty lazy and adjusting the saddle position and suspension would be too much hassle for me.

    Somebody asked me if I was getting a Warden and selling my Mach 6. The answer is no. I love the M6. It's such a great bike. I'm sure the Warden would be great as well, but it's too much $$ and hassle for what would be a very comparable bike.

    If the Knolly 29er gets released and seems like a reasonable fit I'll do my best to get a demo and then I might be joining Team Knolly.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    No. One she wouldn't let me, but also I am pretty lazy and adjusting the saddle position and suspension would be too much hassle for me.
    Haha I can relate to that, I keep trying to convert my Specialized-riding friend, he liked the fit of my bike but I'm about 20kg heavier (it's the home-brew!) so the suspension felt like a rock to him, and since I keep forgetting to write down my settings I wasn't about to let him drop some air from the shock and fork...

  21. #21
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    Those blue frames look amazing.
    Are you guys still having issues with full travel on the Fox fork? The newer models have a negative spring that pretty much fixes that by equalizing it with the positive spring. It's a huge issue on a bunch of different forks with lighter riders and definitely worth the upgrade. We went through 3 forks for mrs jm2e before settling on the Float 36 which is awesome for a bunch of reasons, especially that it gets full 160mm of travel. Try the slacker setting on that bike. Once you try, it's hard to go back. :P
    Knolly Chilcotin
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by jm2e View Post
    Those blue frames look amazing.
    Are you guys still having issues with full travel on the Fox fork?
    We got the new airshaft for her fork and she's now at a full 160mm travel. Cost a few $$$, but she rides a lot so it's worth it.

    Honestly I'm not messing with her bike now. She's digging it and that's all that matters. If she wants to try the low setting I'll make it happen, but she has probably already forgotten that's an option.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post


    My GF and her crew on the Powell River BC Bike Race course.

    She was pretty happy with the Warden last weekend. The PR trails are a lot more XC than we are used to at home. It's great we live in a time where 6" travel AM bikes can hang with a trail bike and not feel like you brought a chainsaw to a knife fight.

    GF wants to tweak her suspension a bit more. She's on the low end of the weight range for suspension so it's a bit of a challenge to get it dialled as well as she'd like. I've got some ideas we'll try this coming weekend.



    Life is tough in coastal BC.
    Hey vik, I'm hoping you can supply a little more info about the trails in Powell River. I'm heading up to the Sunshine Coast for my bachelor party at the end of June and we're thinking about camping near Powell River as all of the sites at Porpoise Bay Provincial Park near Sechelt are full. The group of guys that I ride with all have 6" travel bikes and I ride a Warden. My concern is that the trails seem to be more on the XC end of the spectrum, which is not our preferred type of trail, our preference is more AM (Bellingham, N Shore, Squamish type of trails). We'd spend 2 days riding around Powell River, do you think there are enough trails with decent vertical to keep us satisfied? Thanks!

  24. #24
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    I rode Powell River on my Warden and it was more cross country than DH. Fun, but we didn't bother with our knee pads. We rode what our local contact took us on so it may not all be like that.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by matsf View Post
    Hey vik, I'm hoping you can supply a little more info about the trails in Powell River.
    Disclaimer I rode there 3 days on one trip so don't take my opinion as the last word.

    So the good news is I rode my 6" bike there [Mach 6] and had a good time for 3 days. Good enough that we are going back this year for 4 days with a crew. We stayed at the Inland Lake Prov Park campground. It was very nice.

    The bad news is there were two descents in the whole trip where I made use of my bike's geo and travel.

    It's BC trail riding so it's not boring or stupid easy, but it's not gnarly and challenging either. Think of it this way if you guys are going to drink hard the trails may be as challenging as you need!

    If that doesn't sound good I'd suggest Cumberland [particularly Forbidden Plateau] as an alternate destination in the area. It's got some more challenging riding, a great campground and a fun little apres ride scene to celebrate the bachelor party. Travis is a local and can give you some excellent suggestions.

    This ride had some of the more challenging riding on it: https://ridewithgps.com/trips/10022079

    This day was fun and had one solid descent: https://ridewithgps.com/trips/10022076
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  26. #26
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    Thanks, Travis and Vik, that's really helpful!

  27. #27
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    Forbidden Plateau has been logged quite a bit and the snow has prevented me from getting up there. I plan to check out the lower trails this week.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    Forbidden Plateau has been logged quite a bit and the snow has prevented me from getting up there. I plan to check out the lower trails this week.
    Hopefully the trails can be salvaged.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  29. #29
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    We are still riding our winter bikes here on Vancouver Island, but with nicer weather around the corner we took the time to get the GF's Warden ready to rip all summer.

    - sent shock away for service
    - serviced fork
    - new rear tire [2.5" Vittoria Morsa]
    - new saddle [Selle Anatomica NSX]
    - setup suspension and tested it

    Now that I have an Endo we'll be Team Knolly this summer.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  30. #30
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    It passed the obligatory stair-test?


    I'll be interested to see how guys find them both, I'm guessing since they're both mediums you'll switch it up occasionally?

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post
    It passed the obligatory stair-test?


    I'll be interested to see how guys find them both, I'm guessing since they're both mediums you'll switch it up occasionally?
    No I didn't mess with her setup last year to ride her bike. I'd need a setback post and a longer stem than she uses. Not to mention I weight 70lbs more so the suspension would need some tuning. I'm too lazy for that.

    I am keen to see how I like the Endo. Got some wheels built up, but my carbon rims are deep enough that I needed to order longer stems to set them up tubeless. Just as well. The trails are still a sloppy mess so I might as well ride my 9yr old SC Nomad with fenders!
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  32. #32
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    I know the feeling, I'd love to try convert my Specialized riding friends to the Knolly goodness, but I've got a good 15kg or so on both of them and can't be bothered mucking around with the suspension!

  33. #33
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    We installed a Mudhugger rear fender on my GF's Warden since Vancouver Island weather has been really wet this spring and she wanted to ride her "summer" bike despite the mud. The fender fits the Warden well and install was a snap. She'll pull it off as soon as we get a couple weeks of dry weather.

    She took the Warden to Squamish this weekend. As I was loading it onto our vehicle I noticed a major clunk in the suspension. Investigating further her upper shock bolt was sticking 0.5" out of the bike! She has just finished a jump/drop clinic last week so she is damn lucky it didn't break killing her frame and maybe her as well.

    Before I fixed it I showed her the problem and what it felt like. I don't look after her bike unless she identifies there is a problem since 1. I can't ride her bike and judge a lot of the important stuff like tire pressure/suspension settings since I am 70lbs heavier and 2) she rides without me a lot so I figure she needs to have a basic understanding of how to keep her bike running. I don't expect her to fix stuff, but she should know when there is a problem so she can let me know and/or take the bike to a LBS.

    The bolt was destroyed since she had been riding the bike for a while with bolt only partially installed. Luckily I had just rec'd two spares from Knolly based on the thread discussing upper shock bolt issues in this forum. So I was able to get her rolling in 5 mins instead of hanging up the bike and ordering hardware from Knolly.



    Hopefully she'll be a bit more aware of what's going on with her bike in the future.

    On the positive side she was really happy to be back on the Warden after a few months on her winter bike. She was riding strong and didn't have any crashes.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  34. #34
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    My GF wanted some lighter tires installed than the Nobby Nic 2.6" and Morsa 2.5" set she had on her Warden. So I threw on a set of 2.3" Morsas. They look tiny by comparison. We'll have to see how she likes them after rolling on bigger rubber for a while.



    Sadly she's managed to strip the threads out of the linkage at the upper shock bolt so we can't tighten it at all. Knolly doesn't have any stock of spares for a couple weeks so we'll just get a longer bolt and throw a nut on the outside for now to get her back riding. It's kind of crazy how she destroys bikes.



    She asked to borrow my Endo so she could ride today. I said no and gave her my 10yr old SC Nomad Mk2. She texts me and says the chain keeps going off the big cog into the spokes....didn't do that when I rode it last. She has a magical touch with bikes!
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  35. #35
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    I'm curious how she likes the size of the warden, since she formerly rode a size small? I currently ride a small Endo, and (I think) the fit is right, but I'm still curious how the Medium would feel.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2sharp7 View Post
    I'm curious how she likes the size of the warden, since she formerly rode a size small? I currently ride a small Endo, and (I think) the fit is right, but I'm still curious how the Medium would feel.
    She's liking the fit. She knows and cares nothing about geo charts or sizing. As long as the bike works for her. She's running a 50mm stem on the Warden and a non-setback dropper with the saddle middle of the rails.

    She didn't complain about the fit of the small Mach 6, but she likes the way the Warden descends better. Given they are similar bikes I am chalking that up to the longer WB and bigger reach.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  37. #37
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    Well for $2 worth of longer bolt, a washer and a nut we fixed the GF's upper shock mount bolt. Not beautiful, but it works and if this is her long term solution we'll paint the nut black to be more stealth.

    Thanks to Knolly HQ for offering to help with a fix if we were local [sadly we are across the water on Vancouver Island] and thanks to our local Knolly dealer Sooke Mountain Cycles for brainstorming the DIY angle which we ended up going with.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  38. #38
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    My GF is loving the semi-slicks for their speed. So far it's been a little cooler and wetter than a typical Van Isle summer so the trails haven't gotten quite as dry and loose as usual So that's favouring the less knobby tires. I'll be interested to see how she likes them in another month or two.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

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    Well after a month of use my GF's done with the semi-slick Morsas. They were reasonably worn when I gave them to her and conditions have gotten dry/looser since then. She's finding traction on steeper climbs a problem.

    So we ditch those tires and she's got some fresh Continental Trail Kings in 2.4" width to thrash on the Warden.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

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