Who else is loving their Vertex 970/990?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Proud lame eBiker
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    Who else is loving their Vertex 970/990?

    Recently sold a 970 and a 990 an both customers can't stop raving about them. One guy just got off a Scott RC 29er so he's got some serious comparative creed.

    On his, the 990, we installed set it up with a DT-Swiss XMM carbon steerer/crown fork and also built him up some killer light race wheels. DT-Swiss 190ceramic hubs(105g front/207g rear) Sapim CX-Ray spokes, DT ProLok nipples, Stans Crest rims, all 32 hole, and shod them with some Racing Ralphs(520grams). Oh, and used the XTR ICE rotors. Who boy, those things are liiiiiight!

    Rims/spokes/nipples/hubs/tape/valves came in at 1385grams for the set. Not bad. Not bad at all. And for a full 32 spoked wheel as well. Nice!

    With two carbon Blackburn cages, and Crank Bros. 11 ti pedals, the COMPLETE medium BIKE came in at 20.12lbs. Yesssss, it's that light!


    At any rate, I'm kinda shocked I haven't heard more chatter about these bikes as Rocky seems to have surely hit one out of the park with these, in my mind.


    Any other Vertex 970/990 riders want to share their first hand experience?
    www.velocitybicycles.comWhere customers become friends, not simply a dollar sign.

  2. #2
    ups and downs
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    This rider seemed to be enjoying her 990...
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    I'm a member of NSMBA and IMBA Canada

  3. #3
    aka Gumbo
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    About a month ago I got a 970 with the standard RM build, my only change was to run tubeless with Stan's. It has been a very sweet bike to ride so far. Mostly it has just been on fairly easy New England woods terrain but I did bring it to "Vietnam" and put it through some tough rocky riding but without doing the drops and it was fine on that (except for some big ring tooth damage, I am used to having a bashguard).

    I am looking forward to my first season of doing several races so that was the primary reason for buying it. The Vertex is my first 29er, first carbon mountain bike frame, and I am coming off a full suspension bike as my primary ride. So it is no mystery that it is lighter (weighing in at 23.5 lbs according to a bathroom scale), faster, climbs better etc. The bike is fast and fun and very responsive. Running low pressure in the tires gives me plenty of cushioning and I don't plan on being in the air muich, although the bike could probably handle it, me not so much.

    No rides over 2 hours on it yet but I don't have any indication that it will be any harder on my body than the FS. Also have not raced yet so I can't report on that but all indications are that it will be great in that capacity. My only negative is that the rear derailleur is slow to respond, Very very happy so far. Also, the owner of my LBS where I purchased it just bought a 990 to race on this year and he could get anything he wants to ride.

    With my limited experience I can't really compare it to other brands/models of 29er carbon hardtails. I did recently rent and ride a Niner Jet 9 in AZ and enjoyed that as well, but it was a heavier aluminum FS bike. There are some pix of my bike in a previous RM thread I started a while ago. I have only ridden the Vertex since getting it!

  4. #4
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    990 rsl

    got my 990 rsl and am shocked at how much I love it. I figured it would be a little porky feeling, the wheels would be a little sluggish, the fit would be different and I didn't expect to love it. my first ride was almost 4 hrs and I had no soreness or anything. my other rig is a 26er element team from last year and I think it's a toss up for which bike is better. I can't sing the praises of the element enough. love that ride. it handles everything so well and is very light. the 9er is just as good. it is lighter, super fun, doesn't feel like a pig...the advantages of a 9er are pretty obvious after a very short time on it. mine is full xtr and the gearing is great for a bike this light. I went 28-40 up front. sold on that bike and have to say that rocky has hit everything out of the park for a few years now. the vertex is less expensive and lighter than the top end trek offering, the element looks killer and is undeniably one of the best F/S MTBs of all time, they are on a streak and can do no wrong. the guys on bike rumor have an element MSL built up under 23 lbs and it is a 5 inch travel all mountain (ish) bike. that weight is nuts for a race rig even.
    in closing... the vertex is the best vertex yet in my opinion and rocky has a real winner on their hands.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by adub1978 View Post
    got my 990 rsl and am shocked at how much I love it. I figured it would be a little porky feeling, the wheels would be a little sluggish, the fit would be different and I didn't expect to love it. my first ride was almost 4 hrs and I had no soreness or anything. my other rig is a 26er element team from last year and I think it's a toss up for which bike is better. I can't sing the praises of the element enough. love that ride. it handles everything so well and is very light. the 9er is just as good. it is lighter, super fun, doesn't feel like a pig...the advantages of a 9er are pretty obvious after a very short time on it. mine is full xtr and the gearing is great for a bike this light. I went 28-40 up front. sold on that bike and have to say that rocky has hit everything out of the park for a few years now. the vertex is less expensive and lighter than the top end trek offering, the element looks killer and is undeniably one of the best F/S MTBs of all time, they are on a streak and can do no wrong. the guys on bike rumor have an element MSL built up under 23 lbs and it is a 5 inch travel all mountain (ish) bike. that weight is nuts for a race rig even.
    in closing... the vertex is the best vertex yet in my opinion and rocky has a real winner on their hands.
    I agree that Rocky is knocking it out of the park right now. All their bikes are solid from top to bottom. I am riding an element MSL, had a vertex 29 see and am rolling on a solo RSL road bike right now too. I love the look of the new carbon vertexes.

  6. #6
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    Got a van full of demo bikes and T-shirts. I'll be traveling the western US doing Rocky demo's. Check out bikes.com to see the tour. Gotta keep the bikes but I sure don't want to cart around these. Shirts and socks!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocky-CO View Post
    Got a van full of demo bikes and T-shirts. I'll be traveling the western US doing Rocky demo's. Check out bikes.com to see the tour. Gotta keep the bikes but I sure don't want to cart around these. Shirts and socks!
    Hope to demo a 970/990 Vertex at sea otter. It's steadily climbing up my list of next bikes.

  8. #8
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    Vertex

    We will be at Sea Otter with a fleet of bikes. We will definitely have medium and large carbon vertex's.

  9. #9
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    I want one so baddd, but they are sold out, done making them untill 2013!!! so bummed.. gonna have to buy the 970 frame and build one up I guess. what are the differances (if any) between the 990 frame and 970? or is it just componet spec.?

  10. #10
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    frames are identical, just the components differ btw 990 and 970 Vertex

  11. #11
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    Rocky could also try to track one down at another dealer as well if you are interested in the 990.
    Try emailing [email protected] or let me know which size and I can do it as well.

  12. #12
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    Rocky Co: Very interested in the 990, I work at a shop in San Diego, we just became a dealer, I called the other day and I think it was Jeff I spoke with who said you were out of mediums until next year

  13. #13
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    Just got my 990 yesterday, already knocked 1 lb off. Converted to tubeless, replaced the 180 front rotor with an Ashima 160, changed a bunch of heavy bolts & grips.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackattack View Post
    Just got my 990 yesterday, already knocked 1 lb off. Converted to tubeless, replaced the 180 front rotor with an Ashima 160, changed a bunch of heavy bolts & grips.
    the stock Maxis tyres can save a bit of weight too, I swapped mine out for Racing ralphs which shaved a bit more off. I also did the same with the rotors 180s were a bit overkill for the way I ride although I did gain a bit after putting in a 400mm seat post

    Jackattack, what bolts did you swap out?

  15. #15
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    I test rode the 970 at the Santa Cruz bike festival. Here are my observations.

    The frame: This selling point of the bike. Even with mid range specs this bike climbed and descended really well. The frame is very light but I could not feel any flex. It also did a nice job absorbing some of the road chatter. The geometry seems spot on and after about 2.3 hrs I was still fresh. The overall finish and paint job look very good for a bike that has been through the demo wars.

    The specs: This is a mid range set but the SRAM 2/10 was smooth and had all the gear range I needed. I do wish the front derailleur was a 9 not a 7 so it can be an all SRAM 9 group. The Easton seat post and stem are fine but the handlebar seamed thin and did not absorb vibrations very well. The DT Swiss wheels felt heavy but for the price they are not bad . The Formula brakes were not nearly as good as my Shimano XT. They needed adjustment but even without the front rotor rubbing on the brake pad they would not be as confidence inspiring as Shimano. The Gobi seat was not my favorite but that's just personal preference. Maxxis Icon tires were awesome.

    I'll put the 990 which comes very well specked on my short list of next carbon hardtail.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiggs1974 View Post
    the stock Maxis tyres can save a bit of weight too, I swapped mine out for Racing ralphs which shaved a bit more off. I also did the same with the rotors 180s were a bit overkill for the way I ride although I did gain a bit after putting in a 400mm seat post

    Jackattack, what bolts did you swap out?
    I've been stocking on ti & al bolts all winter so most bolts have been replaced. I also bought a pair of Maxxlite 29 tires which weight 345 g each, much lighter than the Maxxis tires that came with the bike. The bike now weighs 20 lbs with pedals.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackattack View Post
    Just got my 990 yesterday, already knocked 1 lb off. Converted to tubeless, replaced the 180 front rotor with an Ashima 160, changed a bunch of heavy bolts & grips.
    picture please!

  18. #18
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    Vertex 990

    I just picked up a large Vertex 990 two weeks ago, and I love it. I am coming from a Niner Air9, which I really like but the Rocky Mountain geometry takes the cake! It feels less like a monster truck and more like a sports car! I swapped out the cranks with Race Face Next, converted to tubeless,ESI grips, and went with XTR for the rear derailleur and shifter. 21 lbs with EggBeater 2 pedals.
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  19. #19
    crebanker
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    I love my vertex 970. unbelievable bike!

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