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  1. #1
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    Altitude 70 '11 vs Slayer 50 '11

    Oh my not an easy one guys... I went to the LBS and so far he could get me an Altitude 70 or Slayer 50... He still need to make phone calls for Slayer 70.

    Here's the thing : I don't know what to choose at all ! Our local center consist of rooty, rocky, muddy trails. Lots of technical steep climbs and very little light freeride with about 2-3 drops of 3-4ft max. The second nearest MTB center have similar trails.

    I currently have a somewhat okay XC bike Kona One20 primo. I kinda dislike the fact that the 120mm fork is **** and I kinda fear for my life everytime I descend something technical and steep.

    I also have to say that I actually tried an Altitude 70 on a demo day. It climbed everything I could throw at it very much better than my current bike and I didn't have this sensation of fear in descends as much. I loved the ride. But then again, I'm starting to enjoy small jumping around and do small drops there and there as I feel more in control now.

    So... tough choices eh? An excellent climber with decent descend abilities (altitude) or something a bit more suitable for descends and probably a bit less good for climbing (slayer). And finally, which one would be better spec wise ? I have the weekend to think about it as I'm doing the final decision on Monday @ LBS.

    Thanks
    Last edited by Wanny; 08-19-2011 at 03:59 PM.

  2. #2
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    The big difference is head angle and descents. The Altitude has a more XC head angle which some people find a bit twitchy on steep descents, but makes it a great handler on uphills and flats. The Slayer has a much slacker head angle to make it better for steep descents. That will make it a bit tougher to keep it pointed where you want on steep uphills, but from a pedaling perspective they should be pretty similar.

    A dropper seatpost will help make the Altitude more comfy on descents since you can get your weight lower and further back but it still has a steeper head angle which makes the steering response faster. If it felt good on your test ride, the Altitude will be lighter and more nimble, if the Altitude still felt a bit sketchy on the steepest descents, then the Slayer would solve that problem in exchange for a bit more steer wrestling on uphills.
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  3. #3
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    Got a Slayer, freaking love this bike. My father just picked the Altitude 50 which he likes but my Slayer rides much better. My slayer climbs like a beast and flys downhill faster then I can, you won't be disappointed either but Slayer gets my vote

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the reply guys. If we look at part specs only, which one seems better? I'm kinda used to Shimano XT stuff but really don't know about sram. Can both bikes take a good beating or one is more durable than the other?

    Compare: 2011 Slayer 50 vs 2011 Altitude 70 - Pinkbike.com

  5. #5
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    I have run SRAM for years but have used Shimmy as well, I like SRAMS 1x1 ratio triggers and find them easy to tune but that's just me. I would worry about the frame over components because they can always be changed out with better stuff if needed or when and if they brake.

  6. #6
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    It is about the frame's geometry

    Parts spec can be changed/upgraded if need be, but the frame's geo is something you'll have to live with.

    I think the decision has to come down to your riding preferences (as already mentioned by RUH)... e.g. I like to climb, cruise along flowy trails, etc, but I love to go down hill over small jumps and drops and in my near future I want to hone my downhill skills, therefore the obvious choice for me was the Slayer; a bit more armor-- 36s, 20mm thru axle, larger dia tubes etc.

    The Slayer, though a wonderful bike, has its drawbacks as compared to a more xc oriented bike (though this might speak more to my skills than to the bike). Going up techie uphills or switchbacks seems to make the front tire wander a bit and really steep and loose hills causes the front tire to lift (even with the upright seat tube angle). Finally, the weight of the Slayer (though light in my book) is heavier than the Altitude. Now, these things really don't matter much to me (this coming from a guy who spent the last decade on an XC bike). Heavier bike= get stronger, techie uphill= develop new skills.

    I am enjoying my Slayer and I am able to do things on this bike (a real confidence building bike) that I wasn't able (or rather didn't have the guts) to do on my xc bike.

    Sounds like a fun decision to make!
    -T

  7. #7
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    So today I went for a ride. Here's my run : doing some steep climbing first then some up/down flowy trails and then some descends with jumping around and even a 3-4' drop for the first time. So according to this run, would you guys go for an Altitude or Slayer. Looks like to me that Slayer would be better eh?

    After all, I'm really just worried about Slayer's ability to climb. But you guys seems to tell me that it still climb really well.

    So Slayer 50 '11 hum? If the LBS can find me a Slayer 70 tomorrow, do you guys think it's worth it over the Slayer 50 ?

  8. #8
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    WRT to geo, the Slayer 70 comes with a TALAS fork, which can be dropped to 120mm thereby steepening the head angle to help with climbs, although I don't know what geo that it would move to.

    Personally I would go with the Slayer as it has ISCG tabs that allows for a hammerschmidt. I would rather be slower going up than nervous and unconfident going down.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Zoidberg View Post
    WRT to geo, the Slayer 70 comes with a TALAS fork, which can be dropped to 120mm thereby steepening the head angle to help with climbs, although I don't know what geo that it would move to.

    Personally I would go with the Slayer as it has ISCG tabs that allows for a hammerschmidt. I would rather be slower going up than nervous and unconfident going down.
    Got ya.

    If some other people want to express their opinion, feel free. I still have a few hours before I decide for once. It's leaning toward the Slayer so far.
    Last edited by Wanny; 08-21-2011 at 02:51 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Zoidberg View Post
    WRT to geo, the Slayer 70 comes with a TALAS fork, which can be dropped to 120mm thereby steepening the head angle to help with climbs, although I don't know what geo that it would move to.

    Personally I would go with the Slayer as it has ISCG tabs that allows for a hammerschmidt. I would rather be slower going up than nervous and unconfident going down.
    Dropped to 120... but where would that put the bb? I'm afraid I would be smacking the pedals on rocks I was trying to ride up and over. Also, he is looking at the 50 - no talas.

    "rather be slower going up than nervous and unconfident going down" -- great point!

  11. #11
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    One of the last posts metioned the 70....

    Dropping mine (although a Magura Wotan on a SXC) from 160 to 120 I don't notice pedal strikes.

  12. #12
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    Well good news and bad news guys. They had no slayer at all. On the other hand, I got a brand new Altitude 70 '11 at a discounted price (-800$ off the MSRP). A bit disapointed inside but at the same time I'm drooling like a kid because I had a freaking blast on the Altitude when I demo'ed it.

    It's all good because I enjoy climbing as much as descending can't wait to ride it a lot.

    You can now say welcome to the rocky family?
    Last edited by Wanny; 08-22-2011 at 08:09 AM.

  13. #13
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    Welcome. Post pics when you get a chance!

  14. #14
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    Holy christ! LBS just called me. They shipped the wrong bike. He said to me that they actually shipped an Altitude 70 RSL and that he will still sell it to me at the same price. So I got a 4800$ RSL '11 at 3200$ !! I just CAN'T wait to get it now !!!!!

  15. #15
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    upgrade! that's a nice deal.
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  16. #16
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    Two words : Mind blowing. Coming from a Kona One20 Primo, this thing freaking fly ! It is fast fast and fast. I climbed like I never did and descended with much more confidence. I really got lucky to strike a deal like this! Rock on Rocky

    First mud









    I already bent the third gear but don't worry I didn't plan using it anyway :P I will also put some tube around the smoothlink so it doesn't get eaten by the chain.

    Lastly, the rubber ring on my rear RP23 completely reached the bottom. Is it normal or should I redo the sag ? The LBS said it can be set to 30% sag, but I'm not really sure.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockyuphill View Post
    You might try a 10psi bump up in rear shock pressure to see how that feels. Was that ride with or without the ProPedal engaged?
    Well I clearly saw that open it reached bottom way too easily. So I decided to Propedal for the ride and it still reached the bottom. I'll try that I'll go buy a shock pump.

    Why is my post above yours ahah?

  18. #18
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    You might try a 10psi bump up in rear shock pressure to see how that feels. Was that ride with or without the ProPedal engaged?
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  19. #19
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    I'm sure you're past any concern about getting the Slayer. The Altitude is super capable and dare I say more well-rounded than the Slayer.
    You will be able to pound the living daylights out of that frame as it is very stiff but soaks up chatter very well.
    Despite it's claim to fame on it's climbing prowess it makes for a fearsome decender too.

    One area in addition to the chainstay to watch is where the rear derailleur cable housing passes by the seat tube area on it's journey. Due to the suspension motion the housing can rub against the frame at this point.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slowup View Post
    I'm sure you're past any concern about getting the Slayer. The Altitude is super capable and dare I say more well-rounded than the Slayer.
    You will be able to pound the living daylights out of that frame as it is very stiff but soaks up chatter very well.
    Despite it's claim to fame on it's climbing prowess it makes for a fearsome decender too.

    One area in addition to the chainstay to watch is where the rear derailleur cable housing passes by the seat tube area on it's journey. Due to the suspension motion the housing can rub against the frame at this point.
    Thanks for the warning. I'll keep an eye on this area! Man do I want to preserve that frame as much as I can now

  21. #21
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    I was just noticing that the rocker plates look much more svelte than the ones on my 2009 Altitude RSL. Are those alloy or carbon?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Altitude 70 '11 vs Slayer 50 '11-2011_0824new0002.jpg  

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  22. #22
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    Those are the updated carbon version.
    They take advantage of the benefits of carbon as a building material instead of just replicating the shape of the alloy version and there is a small weight advantage. Will Different Bikes be calling us to see if they can order a pair of these for you?
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  23. #23
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    By knocking on them, they seem carbon yes. Anyway, I added like 30 PSI in the rear shock and I still almost bottomed it out hehe I'm gonna add a few more and it should be fine with a 2-2.25'' shock travel. I did sag it with gear now. I'm 205 lbs without gear... I trusted the rear shock setup by the LBS but it was clearly not good... Well it was time to get a shock pump anyway.

    And now I'm gonna dump those Mountain kings. Dear god they're awful in the wet.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanny View Post
    And now I'm gonna dump those Mountain kings. Dear god they're awful in the wet.
    Yeah, I had one ride on those before I punted them. I understand they are much more capable in the Black Chili version though I never sourced those, I just went to something else entirely.
    A nice rolling 2.3 in a sticky compound is the cat's meow on this bike.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slowup View Post
    Yeah, I had one ride on those before I punted them. I understand they are much more capable in the Black Chili version though I never sourced those, I just went to something else entirely.
    A nice rolling 2.3 in a sticky compound is the cat's meow on this bike.
    Well I'm gonna try the 2.35 Minion DHF front & High Roller rear setup I recently set on my old bike. Tho, I might just use High Rollers because I prefered it as a front.

  26. #26
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    I don't know if you need to sweat the rear suspension settings too much. I never found being exact with pressure settings and percentage of sag all that urgently important as it appears that the Altitude has built in room for error.
    Most of the time I (roughly) go with rider weight and I'm good to go.

  27. #27
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    Well let's be honest that 150 psi wasn't ok for a 205 lbs rider :P I'm at 180 right now. Will try 190-200.

  28. #28
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    wow - what a screaming deal. Nice work
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPHcross View Post
    Those are the updated carbon version.
    They take advantage of the benefits of carbon as a building material instead of just replicating the shape of the alloy version and there is a small weight advantage. Will Different Bikes be calling us to see if they can order a pair of these for you?
    Maybe a pair of those and the lighter alloy seat stay too.
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  30. #30
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    It was raining buckets today. I decided to swap the Mountain Kings for a 2.35 Minion DHF / HR setup. Man what a blast I had today. Sure it rolls SLIGHTY less but then I never slid once, so I was actually faster at the end. Highly recommended for the wet season! And when it will be more dry, nothing stop me to add some PSI to get good rolling going.

    Highly satisfied with the bike

  31. #31
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    I had the same experience with my MKs but the rear tread was pretty worn. I got convinced to try their new trail kings w/the chili. They were marginally better and has to really drop the psi to dangerous pinch flat territory. I tried out a nevegal with sticke on the rear it the grip was amazing. My local terrain doesn't really let me rip anyways and same thoughts as you, since I'm not slipping as much I'll be faster in the end anyways!

  32. #32
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    alright, you people are on tires. I have original mountain kings 2.2 on my bike. In slightly dryish hard packed clay... I break loose. The chili compounds have interested me. The nevegal sticke sounds interesting. I was wanting to get a more tight tread pattern with grip. How about a couple of personal Altitude or Element hands on opinions on similiar dry clay dirt conditions.

  33. #33
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    If you're on dry hardpack clay the Race King 2.2 Supersonic or Protection in Black Chili is the ticket, super fast rolling, super on hardpack, and good on loose over hardpack. It is freakishly good on sand and pea gravel for no good reason that I can see.
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  34. #34
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    So here are my thoughts on the Altitude RSL after a dozen of rides.


    1. Mountain kings 2.2. Get rid of them asap! They're clearly hard/medium dry only tires.

    2. The BB is or feel much lower than my previous bike ahah! I already hit the 3rd gear pretty much on rocks that it's just a bashguard now I also hit the pedals on the ground a bit sometimes. I just need to readjust.

    3. Downhill, uphill or flat trails : I'm just faster than before. Period. I'm even having some speed adrenaline rush now :P

    4. Great pedaling efficiency. Still tweaking the rear shock pressure because the more I ride with the bike, the more I'm hard on it and confident.

    5. That damn raceface seatpost is always going down no matter how hard I'm clamping it. I tried to gently scratch horizontally the post with sandpaper and it seemed to help. It is annoying to get off the bike and put it back up.

    6. I think I'm rough on the bike (that's why I questionned on having a Slayer) but the bike held good so far. It will probably need a rim job () soon as those poor rays are gonna hate me.
    Main bike : Altitude RSL 70 '11
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  35. #35
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    Hey guys, my Fox float RP23 recently developped a squeak noise when it is moving. I don't know if it is closely related to the fact that I've put even more pressure (around 200 psi, I weight 205lbs). Anyone else got this before? Would an Air Sleeve maintenance from the fox manual fix it?

    Some people says it will go off after some time. Some say that my seal can be broken. Some say just to rebuild it... It is fairly new. I'd say about 20-30 hours of riding in pretty rough conditions tho.
    Main bike : Altitude RSL 70 '11
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  36. #36
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    Happened to me a while ago and replacing the seals didn't do anything. I sent it to PUSH for a rebuild and tune. They fixed the squeek.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Zoidberg View Post
    Happened to me a while ago and replacing the seals didn't do anything. I sent it to PUSH for a rebuild and tune. They fixed the squeek.
    Thanks for your response. Well it also started to leak some air only when it is working. So I guess I've blown the seals and it also explains the small noise that sound like someone is squeezing a mouse.

    And damn, during one of my ride, one of the screw on the top eye of the rear rp23 untightened itself and create quite a huge play I wasn't so happy when I discovered that at the end of the ride because I never noticed it and I still blasted the trails like usual... Can you believe it? We have enough rough vibrations here to make a linkage screw untight itself...

    I'm gonna bring it to the LBS anyway. It needs to be checked by professional eyes and retuned before I kill it.
    Main bike : Altitude RSL 70 '11
    DH bike : Aurum 2 '12

  38. #38
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    My limited understanding is that there are 2 levels of service for a shock. Level 1 is replacing the seals and can be done by an LBS. Level 2 is a rebuild and tune and most LBS do not have the know-how or capability. That is where PUSH or Fox ProTune (in the US only I think) or anyother 3rd party aftermarket shock/fork business comes in. But then again I've read posts on MTBR on how to do a level 2 service on a shock at home so maybe there are some LBS techs that can do that too.

    Good luck!

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