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  1. #1
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    New to the family - Mach6 content

    Hey guys, a new Pivot guy here (kinda, I owned a 2012 429A). I recently was offered the opportunity of a lifetime for a bike geek, a position at Pivot Cycles. As such, I picked up a Mach6 to replace my Knolly Endorphin. Today was the maiden voyage and I thought I would share some thoughts on the Mach6, which goes about its business quite a bit differently than the Knolly.

    Since I'm a bike geek, I went with a medium Electric Blue and had to go with the XX1 build kit. This is my first bike with a 1x11 drivetrain. I went with the XX1 kit for a few reasons, weight being one, and I really wanted to try the SRAM Guide RSCs. I have been running Hopes for what seems like forever, and the reviews of the Guides had me intrigued, more on that later.

    I built the bike up yesterday, it came in at 26.9lbs with Shimano 540 clipless pedals, really impressive, and at least .5lbs better than I expected. The HR2s are a bit porky, I have had great luck with the DHR2 as a rear tire, it is about .25lbs lighter and provides excellent traction and rolls better than the HR2. I have a Thomson Covert dropper on the way, and I really missed it today. I was a late adopter of droppers, but now I can't live without them.

    The first thing I noticed about the M6 was the fit. I have been through several threads on here with respect to sizing, and I chose to go with a medium. I'm 5'10", 32" inseam, and a maybe longer than average torso. All the bikes I have ridden in the past were mediums, and I love the fit of this bike. I know the trendy "Enduro" geometry tends towards a longer front-center and reach, but the reach on the M6 felt perfect to me. It is about .75" shorter than the Endorphin and I'm running the stock 60mm stem on the M6 vs a 70mm stem on the Endo. The M6 offers a more upright and comfortable position, I experienced no lower back pain, which I can at times on the Endo on longer rides with extended tech climbs. I found that my positioning on the bike has engaged a few different muscles, or at least in different proportions, so it will take some time to build these muscles for optimal efficiency on the bike.

    One climb in particular stood out to me today, there is a grunt up to a saddle on Gila trail, it has a short steep pitch, and after our monsoons is littered with rocks from golf ball to grapefruit size. Throw in some ruts and tombstones and you have a climb that requires your attention to clean it. It's the type of climb that everything has to be right to get through it, not to mention is a grunt just getting to this segment, so you re already breathing hard. Today I just flowed up it. I didn't have to shift my weight to keep the front end from wandering, I could just focus on the my line and pedaling. The bike held traction well, and the HR2 3Cs were helpful too. This was when I knew I was going to get along just fine with this bike.

    A bit earlier in the ride, we descended 620 (Pyramid) which is more of a hiking trail. The descent is about a mile long, and has something like 37 switchbacks (or something like that, I counted once). This is a ride I would normally clean, the recent storms have made it a bit more challenging. The M6 has a shorter wheelbase than many of the bikes I have owned in the past, and it really helped. I cruised through the switchbacks with ease. Here is where the Guides shined. I have always appreciated the modulation and control of Hopes. I would take modulation over power all day long, especially here in Phoenix where traction is limited. The Guides provide both. I have a 180/160 rotor setup, and I come in at about 200lbs geared up. The Guides can't compete with the Hopes in bling, appearance, or lever shape, but they feel really nice, and are super quiet. I love the additional power that the Guides offer. If these turn out to be as reliable as the media reports say, then SRAM has a winner. It was nice to be at the bottom of the descent and not be experiencing arm pump.

    I'm looking forward to getting more time on the bike, I'm really digging it. I LOVE the color, it's really nice in person. The 36RC2 is coming around nicely. I really have a love for the MRP Stage, but this 36 just might stay on this bike.

    I'll report back as I get more info and dial in the suspension.

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  2. #2
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    Congrats! I have exact same bike and build but in Large. Love the Guides too. Lighter tires are the only change I'm looking for on this bike.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for taking the time to do the write up. Cleaning the Pyramid descent as a first ride on a new bike is a testament to your bike handling skills. Nice!

    How does the Mach 6 stack up to the Chili? Curious. No comments about carbon vs aluminum? I used to be frame material neutral but not after a couple of months on an Ibis HDR. Frame has to be carbon from now on.

    If you decide you would rather put the MRP on your Mach 6 I would be interested in your 36.

    Congrats on the job at Pivot. Based on your posts, it should be a dream job for you. Good luck.

    Thanks,
    Bob

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobo_krkk_NIN View Post
    Thanks for taking the time to do the write up. Cleaning the Pyramid descent as a first ride on a new bike is a testament to your bike handling skills. Nice!

    How does the Mach 6 stack up to the Chili? Curious. No comments about carbon vs aluminum? I used to be frame material neutral but not after a couple of months on an Ibis HDR. Frame has to be carbon from now on.

    If you decide you would rather put the MRP on your Mach 6 I would be interested in your 36.

    Congrats on the job at Pivot. Based on your posts, it should be a dream job for you. Good luck.

    Thanks,
    Bob
    Thanks Bob. Yes, this is a dream job, and I'm honored to be part of the Pivot team.

    The M6 and Chili really share nothing in common. The Chili is a beast, heavy, and slower pedaller. It's not terrible, but after being on the M6 it is very noticeable. I would say the M6 is closer to the previous generation Endorphin in it's suspension action, I would describe it as sporty/fast. Like many bikes, the M6 gets better with speed. It is very supple on the small stuff, it nearly erases all the small stuff. I will say that the Float X on my bike is better supported than the demo bike I rode, but is a bit harsh on high speed hits. This is not a frame issue, but rather a Float X issue. The Float X is a position sensitive damper vs a speed sensitive damper. After riding bikes with custom tuned suspension for so long, it is noticeable. I am going to work on dialing it in, but may go to either a CCDBA, or have the Float X tuned by Avy, I'm confident that either option will resolve the issue.

    I only have a few rides on the M6, and I still need to work out my cable routing, and dial the suspension. However, the M6 is very efficient. Using my angle finder on my phone, it shows the head angle of the M6 with the 36 at 65 degrees. The Endo is 67, and I can say after today that the front end of the M6 is more planted and climbs very well.

    Riding the M6 requires a totally different technique than Knolly bikes. Some of it is due to the shorter reach, some of it is due to the suspension, and some yet is due to my technique. Both bikes beg to be ridden aggressively and fast, and I struggled with it today because I was pretty tired on the bike.

    I would say the most noticeable traits of the M6 are the weight and the pedaling ability. I just need more time to get used to the bike. Looking forward to more saddle time.
    Employed by Pivot Cycles - www.pivotcycles.com

  5. #5
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    Congratulations on your new gig. Now get an anonymous screen name and start feed us those Pivot secrets.

  6. #6
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    I have the same bike but with XTR brakes and a Pike up front. I agree with you about the rear suspension and I'll be getting a DB Inline within the next month or two. All the reviews are solid and a friend just demo'd one and said the difference is night & day. I've been very happy with my Mach 6.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    I have the same bike but with XTR brakes and a Pike up front. I agree with you about the rear suspension and I'll be getting a DB Inline within the next month or two. All the reviews are solid and a friend just demo'd one and said the difference is night & day. I've been very happy with my Mach 6.
    I've always been a proponent of Avy's custom tuning. I've owned several of his shocks and for cartridges. I would like to stick with the Float X, but due to its limited tuning options I may send it off to Craig for some love. I'm also quite interested in the BOS Kirk, I've only heard good things about it. I've owned a few different CCDB coils (No experience with the Air) and was never really impressed. I found that they were really spikey on fast square edge hits, which we have plenty of here in Phoenix. If I do buy a new shock, I may just have to go with the BOS, and try something new.

    I'm still working through the 36 setup. I think I'm getting a bit closer. I just need to get out to the mountain for a solo ride and spend some time dialing things in. Overall though, I love the bike. Once I get this bike dialed, I need to work through the next big decision, Mach4 or Mach429SL?
    Employed by Pivot Cycles - www.pivotcycles.com

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiSS'er View Post
    I'm still working through the 36 setup. I think I'm getting a bit closer. I just need to get out to the mountain for a solo ride and spend some time dialing things in. Overall though, I love the bike. Once I get this bike dialed, I need to work through the next big decision, Mach4 or Mach429SL?
    I had my first ride on the new 36 Float this weekend and was quite impressed. I have an avy cartridge that should fit in it out of the box (from the Fox 36 VAN) but I don't know if it is worth the weight penalty at this point. I will be interested incomparing notes on tuning this fork.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by nybike1971 View Post
    I had my first ride on the new 36 Float this weekend and was quite impressed. I have an avy cartridge that should fit in it out of the box (from the Fox 36 VAN) but I don't know if it is worth the weight penalty at this point. I will be interested incomparing notes on tuning this fork.
    Luca,

    Would you mind sharing with me your setup data? I think I was running way too much rebound and compression. I get the feeling that the Fox is more responsive to spring rate changes and keeping the dampening more open. I have not used a Fox fork product in many, many years.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiSS'er View Post
    Luca,

    Would you mind sharing with me your setup data? I think I was running way too much rebound and compression. I get the feeling that the Fox is more responsive to spring rate changes and keeping the dampening more open. I have not used a Fox fork product in many, many years.
    Brandon, take these settings with a grain of salt. I have just started tuning the fork and the trails I rode this weekend were very fast and swoopy with some waterbar drops and smooth airs. No rough square edges or big holes to deal with.

    My weight ready to ride: 175-180lbs depending on water, pads, etc

    Air pressure: 70psi / 35mm sag standing on the pedals with nose on the stem
    LSC: 15 clicks out
    HSC: 3 clicks in
    Reb: 6 clicks out.

    I used ~140mm of travel in these conditions and shouldn't have used any more on these trails so the air pressure is in the right ballpark, i may try to drop it to 65psi and see how the fork rides. Right now, it feels like I am riding the air spring more than the damper (very different from Avy cartridge). Rebound was a hint fast but made the fork quite responsive and lively. I'll give it another ride before I dial it in a click or two.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by nybike1971 View Post
    Brandon, take these settings with a grain of salt. I have just started tuning the fork and the trails I rode this weekend were very fast and swoopy with some waterbar drops and smooth airs. No rough square edges or big holes to deal with.

    My weight ready to ride: 175-180lbs depending on water, pads, etc

    Air pressure: 70psi / 35mm sag standing on the pedals with nose on the stem
    LSC: 15 clicks out
    HSC: 3 clicks in
    Reb: 6 clicks out.

    I used ~140mm of travel in these conditions and shouldn't have used any more on these trails so the air pressure is in the right ballpark, i may try to drop it to 65psi and see how the fork rides. Right now, it feels like I am riding the air spring more than the damper (very different from Avy cartridge). Rebound was a hint fast but made the fork quite responsive and lively. I'll give it another ride before I dial it in a click or two.
    Thanks. I'm setup with similar air pressure, but running only a few clicks from fully open on the both LSC and HSC. I have a feeling it will take some time to get things where I want them. As you stated, it feels very different than the way Avy goes about it, so I may just need an adjustment period.
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