Evil The Following demo from Wrench Science, I was amazed.- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    Evil The Following demo from Wrench Science, I was amazed.

    I never really give 120 travel bikes much thought, demoed a Pivot 429 plus tire, and rode it 1/4 mile, returned it for a Firebird (awesome!). So, when Henry at Wrench Science, Berkeley, said to try The Following, I was skeptical. Well I am blown away. What a fantastic bike! Size Medium w/ Rockshox rear shock, FOX 34 set to 120mm, ENVE/I9 wheelset, Shimano XT 1 x 11, and Vittoria Morsa 29 x 2.3 f/r. My own bike is 140 rear/160 Pike, so this is very different.
    I took The Following to Rockville park, and tried to bottom out that 120 rear end for 3 hours, no dice! The DELTA link IS legit. I hit one jump about 3 feet to flat landing, did not even feel rough. Amazing. All day I was hitting technical rock climbs and obstacles, and this foreign bike felt like my own. I cleared one 50 foot anaerobic climb that Ive only made 3 of 20 tries on my own bike on dry trails. Get this, I cleared it on The Following in wet grass/mud. I was pumped! I forget how well 29er wheels put down the traction. The modern 29er full suspension bikes are so much better than what was offered 5 years ago. Considering the ENVE rims, I lowered pressure to 24 PSI vs usual 26/27 on MY alum rim bike, I was not worried about hurting ENVE hoops at slow motion Rockville. Traction was incredible, and these are not the best mud tires. I use STRAVA, I Set a personal PR on about 7 sections, from 1- 7 minute sections. I think this is very impressive on a bike that is not mine, and I am a tad tired from riding this week. Additionally, the tire choice for wet conditions could have been better, and it was wet all day. Greasy rock sections, and slippery mud, but The Following hooks up with the right technique.
    As far as the feel of the bike, I feel like I was sitting IN the bike vs on it, which is great. The FOX fork rides a bit too high for me, Im a Pike guy that rides a 65 degree head tube angle on personal bike. So The Following frame felt great right from the begining (Ibis bikes are like this). Once I got used to the less slack front end setup, this bike railed all my favorite turns. I pulled front end up, and slammed into some boulders, and the EVIL bike just firmly compressed and rolled right up stuff. I use alot of weight shifting to get rear end up the rock faces, rather than pedaling, and the 29er wheels are easier to roll over rocks than my smaller wheeled bike. Downhill sections (and there are not many nor long ones at Rockville) are laid to waste by the big wheels, compliant nature of DELTA link, and this bike smoothes out the bumps as well as my 140 travel rig. Very surprising ramp up ability of the Following makes it ride like a longer travel bike. Its just that simple.
    Henry from Wrench Science, said the flip chip was setup more cross country, and I am sure this bike would behave even better for my style of riding with the slightly lower bottom bracket. I only had 1 or 2 pedal strikes this ride, which is less than usual for Rockville. I will tell you this, if I had taken more time to set up fork, adjusted brake levers to my style, and had a 2.4 Front mud friendly tire, I could have shredded even harder (Is that smart?). I learned something about the highly capable, short travel bike that is The Following. Trust me, treat this bike as a 140 rear, because the DELTA link can handle what you dish out. If you are on the fence beacause of the 120mm specification, all I can say is ride one. TRY to bottom out the rear end when set up correctly. I am surprised at the bottomless feel.
    A few words about me, to qualify that Im not a newbie. I ride 200 days per year, been riding since 1975, climbed 400,000 ft, I am not good enough to be a real racer, but I can put the hurt on a bike if my line choices get lazy. I rode the snot out of this, would love to flog it down Downieville, or Whole Enchilada (the 29er hoops are SO efficient, its got to help for a 5 hr ride). I dont know, WHO gets to test bikes on all their favorite trails except bike industry guys. I was happy to ride this for a day.
    Last edited by hoolie; 02-23-2017 at 05:44 PM.

  2. #2
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    Try to post a few pics

    Evil The Following demo from Wrench Science, I was amazed.-img_4608.jpgEvil The Following demo from Wrench Science, I was amazed.-img_4649.jpg

  3. #3
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    Turn your ipad si

    Too bad the new photo installer on MTBR adds photos sideways, it used to be super easy.
    Evil The Following demo from Wrench Science, I was amazed.-img_4660.jpg

  4. #4
    Captain One Lung Administrator
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    Great review!

    It sums up my feeling about The Calling except for the monster truck wheels and I have a sweet Pike. Henry at Wrench Science did me right and set up my bike so perfect that on my first ride I set PRs without much effort because I was just having fun. I expected to need a few rides to get acquainted with my new bike but it just felt perfect from ride #1.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
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    Thanks guys for the great words! I hope to continue to assist all the MTB riders here in the bay!

    -Henry

  6. #6
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    JC Wages, where did you take Evil for the first ride?

  7. #7
    Captain One Lung Administrator
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoolie View Post
    JC Wages, where did you take Evil for the first ride?
    I rode Auburn. Confluence was down and Culvert was a mess so we hit Manzanita, Stagecoach, Flood and Mossy. It was crazy wet but so much fun! I PRd a section without even trying. It was supposed to be a casual ride to exercise our legs. haha

  8. #8
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    Man, that is a great place, I have only done trifecta 3 3/4 times. Haha, I bonked once, took the bridge back, wah wah. Dying to get back to Auburn.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoolie View Post
    All that---
    This. Every damn time I ride my following. Have never regretted this decision for one moment, and spent a good amount of time really questioning my sanity when I went all in on a 120/29er.

    The think tank at Evil is at the next next level

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