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Cycling Sports Group (GT, Mongoose, Schwinn, Cannondale and recently Iron Horse) invited DOWN Cycles and other select shops to a multi day seminar/dirt demo in Park City Ut this past June. I extended my stay a few days and took a road trip down to Moab with a couple 2010 GT’s locked and loaded.

GT Sensor

Other than parking lot tests, I never properly thrashed around on a new GT. I always admired GT’s attention to detail and trick suspension design. Ironically, before I was a dealer, I primarily rode only GT bikes. For crying out loud, GT was my first grass roots sponsor!

In park city I tested the GT Sanction on lift access runs at Deer Valley. The Sanction was a spot on bike for this type of riding. 6” travel was enough to bomb almost all the runs and hit them fast and clean. I took it down the national course. I rode ninety percent on the track, but walked it through the Barney Rubble rock garden. I also didn’t feel confident enough to hit the big drops. I tried not to fall in love with the bike since it will only be available as a UK bike for 2010. Say good bye in 2010 to the Sanction state side.

I also tested the GT carbon Zaskar. This bike is scary fast! It rides extremely light and has stable geometry for high speeds (this is a good thing because you will only ride at high speeds). If you’re in the market for a lightning fast XC racer, consider the Zaskar. It is an unfair advantage on an XC loop as far as I’m concerned (even though I took the town lift to the top). Every other bike you ride will feel like a pig after riding a carbon Zaskar. I won’t be right for a while after that experience.

2010 GT Sensor

Moving on to the bike that stands out as my favorite of all time, a new model for 2010, the GT Sensor! I tested it out in Park City and fell in love. This is the bike I took to Moab along with a Force. The Sensor is a 5” trail bike with perfect geometry, a longish stroke rear air shock (low leverage ratio) and a rock solid build kit. The bike I tested had a full XT build, Fox air rear with lock out and Fox Float RL, 15mm fork.

From what I was told, the GT Sensor will be priced very competitively. The frame is alloy and is not available in carbon fiber. Handling is superb and the suspension is absolutely perfect! GT got the suspension balance nailed down on this new design. 5” trail bikes should be quick to accelerate and this bike rockets to speed thanks to the stiff swing arm and dialed in, no slop suspension links. What amazed me most is the positive rider to ground feedback. In other words, this bike does not feel like mush at all. The rider can feel what is happening beneath him, but is not being punished. The bike can be pumped back up to speed without any loss/absorption from inefficient suspension. I feel that the long stroke air shock has a lot to do with the Sensors dialed in ride quality. The shock is not working hard thanks to a low leverage ratio.

The Sensor’s ride is lively and inspirers confidence. I actually liked this bike much better compared to the more expensive 6” travel GT Force. I’m not sure how keen I am about 6” travel XC rigs. They just feel like too much bike for XC. The GT Sensor is my next trail bike for sure. Get ready to read crazy positive reviews when they’re released. The 2010 GT Sensor is simply fun to ride, easy to ride at speed and crushes anything you throw at it!

6 Updates

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Occasionally I get to demo high end bicycles. I lucked out when Marin bikes hand delivered me a brand spanking new 2009 Mount Vision 5.8. Much to my surprise, Marin offered up the bike to me for a few weeks! To say I was flattered is an understatement. From the get go Marin knew, with utmost confidence, that I’d love their bike and the Quad Link suspension.

What attracts a buyer to consider purchasing a particular bicycle? In my opinion the look of the bike/ first impressions are most important. I would think the name brand weighs in next, then, I feel that positive reviews certainly help, good warranty, price/value may also seal the deal.

Marin bikes resemble no other suspension design in the industry. Marin takes an unconventional approach to suspension perfection by combining a true four bar link with a high forward pivot. This design creates a bike with a longish swing arm. This look is unconventional and invokes strange and sometimes annoying comments.

Obvious to me, the Mount Vision is an XC bike. With a steep head angle of 69 degrees and 4.7” of rear travel, this bike shouts XC. Funny thing, other riders (even experienced riders) would ask me if I was riding a DH bike. To some, the huge swing arm resembles that of a long travel DH bike. This scenario played out many times in my shop and out on the trail. Some people love the look; others think the frame looks odd and is too bizarre for their liking.

I like the look of this bike. Maybe the DH rider in me could care less how robust the swing arm is. I feel the bike has a well balanced, artist look to it. I can appreciate the attention to detail and I’ve always sided on “form follows function”.

Simply put, the Quad Link suspension does everything a suspension bike is supposed to do. I did not feel one bit of pedal feedback. The suspension is unaffected when braking and remains neutral. Small to medium bumps are gobbled up and the suspension ramps aggressively towards bottom out. Sag is easy to set (and also very important to set properly). The FOX rear shock "Pro Pedal" lever is easy to reach if you choose to use it. I used Pro Pedal on fire roads, but the Marin climbs well even in active mode.

The Mount Vision ride is smooth and the bike is a blast to ride. A bike that inspires me to ride again and again is always a winner in my book. Speaking of suspension, the Marin may be too good for XC riding! As good as the FOX Float works up front, it struggles to keep up with this bikes rear suspension. Some riders may become overly confident in their ability to downhill on this bike. A word to the wise, the Mount Vision will pitch you if you over ride her. The BB height is good for clearing rocks and the head angle is responsive and gives the bike a snappy feel, but these geometry specs are not DH friendly.

Negatives: Well nothing is perfect and I have a couple gripes. For one, the Devo WTB saddle was not comfortable and the edges are sharp. I have more than a few black and blues on the inside of my thighs to support this claim. The WTB grips are too fat and squirmy and they’re not lock on. Under extreme g outs, I could feel some swing arm flex. Please keep in mind that I’m a Pro downhiller and I’m riding down very steep terrain that most XC riders would not ride. I’m also spoiled with my King rear hub and can never get used to a Shimano XT. The XT hub has a lot of play/slop to engage forward momentum.

This bike would completely rule the trails with the rear drop outs (and 12mm Maxel axle kit installed) from the Wolf Ridge (Marin’s 5.5” travel bike). These drop outs will fit the Mount Vision, but you would need a new rear hub that is 135mm x 12mm. Why not slap on a King? With this modification, the Mount Vision would be unstoppable!

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I’ve been riding with tubeless mountain bike wheels and tires for the last two years. I have contemplated doing a review on tubeless since I’m still a bit perplexed on whether they’re a worthy upgrade over tube tires or not.

I have to admit that the system does work perfectly fine, but I’ve had some issues over the years. These issues are rather serious and they have me second guessing a positive review. I also wonder if they’re worth the investment or if they’re at all an upgrade over tube tires.

First off let me start with what the advertised, so called, benefits of tubeless systems. Manufacturers will tell you that you can utilize lower tire pressure (for better traction) without the annoyance of getting a pinch/snake bite tube flat. I suppose this statement has some truth to it. Fact is: lowering tire pressure in order to gain traction is something riders will not do for three reasons.

One, running low tire pressure (I assume low pressure for XC is below 30 psi) will dramatically increase your chance of burping air from the tubeless tire/rim bead contact area. Burping will occur if you ride aggressive, blast into turns/berms or jump and land on an off camber. Forget about tire sealant preventing this issue. Tire sealant has not helped my tires hold a bead or has it prevented flats do to punctures.

Second, lower tire pressure is a literal drag to ride. The rolling resistance is very severe and is actually dangerous to ride with either tube or tubeless tires. I’m sure most of you have rode with low pressure before. If not, try lowering your tire pressure and go for a ride. Accept the fact that you’re trying this at your own risk. Most likely, you will scare yourself when the tire flops/rolls from the rim. This unnerving sensation is even more noticeable with single ply tires and skinny rims. Flopping tires are also an issue when running low air pressure on large DH style tires. The skinny is, when your tires roll from the rim, you will temporarily have zero control of your bicycle. I don’t care how good a rider you think you are.

Third reason you’ll never lower your tires air pressure is an obvious one. You have a much better chance of denting the alloy rim with low tire pressure. Not only will your rims suffer possible catastrophic damage, your tubeless tires themselves very often snake bite flat. Yes, straight through the tires rubber casing.

So obviously the advertised ability to safely utilize lower tire pressure with tubeless is a bust. What then are the advantages of tubeless? The only one I can think of is that they eliminate tubes. Without a tube, you will never have another tube style snake bite flat. With tire pressures around or above 30 psi, I have had great success with tubeless!

You will become very aware of how often you run over thorns and also how often you weaken the tires bead when you switch to tubeless. A few companies offer tubeless tire repair kits, but frankly, not one has worked for me (and yes I’ve tried them all). The simple truth is, you must carry a tube with you wherever you go and I also recommend a heavy duty section of rubber for side wall repairs. Some duct tape is also a good idea to keep with you to hold that rubber piece in place when repairing side walls.

A C0 2 cartridge does not have enough volume to blow up a tubeless tire on the trail. A compressor is the only way to fill a tubeless tire with a strong controlled blast of high pressure air. You will need to install a tube during trail side repairs.

I’ve yet to wear a tire out on any of my tubeless tires. I’ve had to replace every tire long before it wore out do to damage to the tire casing, rendering the tire useless (unless I ran a tube). This expensive issue is annoying to say the least.

My tires are always low on pressure before every ride losing up to 15 psi overnight (unless the tire is brand spanking new). Pressure loss is hard to detect and almost impossible to repair if you find the cause. Some pressure loss comes from a loose tubeless valve. This is usually an easy fix, unless you over tighten the external o ring, knurled nut and twist/rip the internal rubber seal. (This happened to me while the bus pulled up to shuttle up to LPS in Moab Utah).

Tubeless tire selection is pretty decent. Many award winning tires are unfortunately only available in tube style, such as Stick e Nevegals. Maxxis offers a wide variety of tubeless tires, but still no mud tubeless tires. I’ve been riding the Maxxis Igniters and they seem very good for east coast conditions. They’re great on rock and hard pack and worked well in Moab and at the Kingdom trails in Vermont. They fall short in slick conditions and I wish they were a bit softer. Maxxis XC tubeless are 70a duro.

I recommend tubeless tires to riders who are competitive. Many a race has been lost due to a tube pinch flat. Riders who have a fat wallet and a lot of patience are also good candidates for tubeless. Weekend warriors should stay clear of tubeless. I feel that most riders will suffer with problems with tubeless. Tube systems work pretty well and are pretty easy to work on trail side.

In the long run, most riders will end up running tubes in the tubeless tires. I’ve battled the tubeless system tooth and nail. As of now, I have a leaky tubeless Igniter on the front of my bike and a Cross Mark on the rear with a tube since the tires bead is weak, not enough to bulge the tube, but just enough to leak all the air if set up tubeless.

In other words, I’ve been beaten by tubeless tires. I have surrendered, forced to run tubes inside this sophisticated, brilliantly engineered, tubeless work of art.

2 Updates

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5/20/09, 75 degrees, Sunny and the dirt is tacky. EC, his mechanic Sniper, and my GT bicycles rep Adam Andre all hit up Blue Mountain Reservation for a shop ride. We filmed a bit of XC on XC bikes at DH speeds. The vibe was positive, the GT bikes are stellar and everyone had a killer ride!

I bounced around on the GT force bikes and was very impressed. These bikes are fast! They're also very lightweight and simply gorgeous. The craftsmanship is top shelf and the build spec is impressive. I also hopped aboard EC's Proto GT Fury. The Fury is the first production full carbon fiber DH bike (I know, I know, BCD has been building full carbon DH rigs for years). The Fury rides just as you'd expect, like a full on World Cup custom bike. The rear suspension felt, well, pretty much perfect and the bike accelerated easily. I was impressed to say the least.

Best of all was the good times had by all! We had a blast tearing around my local trails and I was proud and excited to have a world cup racer and all time legend of the sport amped on trials I built. EC even gave me props on my riding and filmed a bit with me as well!

Thanks again to Team GT for visiting my shop!ecgec

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I’ve tested a few products recently that have simply astonished me. Every once in a while a product comes along that is technologically light years ahead of the rest and the pack will have to try and catch up.

I have been testing out a new chain lube, CHAIN-L on all of my bikes from Cross to DH. I was always a wax lube type of guy do to the clean trailside repairs and general bike cleanliness, but CHAIN-L has converted me. I now understand the benefits of an oil lube. Besides having the best name ever conceived for a chain lubricant (say it fast), CHAIN-L is by far the best chain lube I’ve ever applied to my bike.

CHAIN-L is actually rather thick oil. I admit I was a bit nervous during the initial application. This lubes viscosity resembles that of honey, but when used properly, your bikes chain and associated components will stay clean. (Just follow the directions and make sure to wipe down your chain after the ride).

This chain lube will make you a faster rider! I immediately noticed my drive train was totally quite, the bike was easier to pedal and accelerated much faster! I’m sure many racer types consider this product a secret weapon.

Your bike will shift much better with this lubricant and you will have less wear issues with your chain and gears. My shift from 1 to 2 on the front rings is now instantaneous and I’ve never experienced one iota of chain suck since I’ve been using this lube.

I’ve found that chain lubrication intervals for east coast mountain biking is around every 5th ride, (with wax lube, every 2nd ride). Sure, your chain may attract some dirt, but the dirt will not make its way into the chains bearings as this is the area of the chain that CHAIN-L protects best.

DOWN Cycles is now a dealer for CHAIN-L and a 4oz bottle sells for a reasonable $12 and last much longer compared to other brands.

You just have to love these new technical innovations!

Chain L

5 Updates

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A brutal winter is upon us. Do yourself and your bike shop a favor and prepare now for the warmer temperatures. The following Tech Tip is a simple way that you can check the condition of your bikes rear suspension:

Temporarily remove your rear shock and rear wheel. Cycle your swing arm through full travel. It helps to have a bike stand, but you can perform this tip without one. Watch out for bikes with front derailleurs. Shift into 2nd gear before lifting up your bikes swingarm! Some swing arms will hit the front derailleur when it is in 1st gear and cause headaches.

You should be able to move the rear triangle/swingarm though full travel with very little effort. If you feel or hear noise/friction, you have problems. Usually FS bikes need pivot work after a hard season of riding. Many bikes are blamed for bad performance only because they have not been maintained properly.

While you’re at it, check your cables running to your rear brake and shifter. Make sure they’re not rubbing on the frame or being pinched. Also keep in mind that your shock will bottom out long before your rear tire touches the seat/seat post.

Another smart thing to check is your frame/rear shock alignment. Eyeball your suspension links, where your shock mounts and where the front of the shock bolts to your frame. These locations should be parallel to one another. In other words, you’re checking to see if your rear shock is under unnecessary side load. Your shock will dramatically affect your quality of travel if it is under side load pressures. Your shock will also suffer premature failure operating under these extreme forces. You can usually see issue’s with frame alignment when cycling the suspension into full bottom out. I’ve seen bikes that were more than a 1/8” out. This issue is usually not rectified by your bike shop. You will need to warranty your frame if it’s out of wack.

I remember a customer who complained that his BMW race link suspension worked horribly and he wanted to sell the bike because of this. Now I know that the BMW bikes are amazing from first hand experience! I did this exact test to his bike and couldn't believe how contaminated his links were. It was amazing that the suspension worked at all. I could hardly move the suspension with no shock installed!!! Needless to say, many dollars latter, his bike was repaired and he was blown away by how well it now performed! So get on it people, pull that shock off and inspect your bike. Now's the time to drop it off for service as DOWN Cycles is open in the winters (winter hours, so call first). I'm pretty sure everyone out there is pumped for spring; don't let mechanicals hold you back from riding at your best on that first warm sunny day!
Suspension Cycled at Full Bottom Out

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Happy Holidays to everyone! 2009 will be an interesting year for the industry to say the least. Exciting new products are now available (or are soon to be) such as the Hammerschmidt 2 speed internal front drive.

I can't wait to see how this system will effect future frame designs. I can't say I'm not worried about the increased drive train wear associated with a single granny front drive. That poor 24/26T is under extreme stress and riders are going to destroy chains constantly. Only time will tell.

Being a rider all my life and running the shop for ten years, I've seen my share of shady designs that thankfully died out. It is amazing to watch the evolution of the bicycle unfold before my eyes. You can buy an amazing MTN. bike for around $750!

This crazy economy may end up benefiting all cyclist in the long run. I'm sure you'll see more people building their own bikes and components from garages (this is how most industries start out in the first place). If America has one thing going for it, it is innovation. What we now need to survive is pride.

Many companies that advertised "Made In The USA" have buckled and now use overseas companies to build their bikes. I know they need to stay competitive, but this must have been a painful decision for them to make. Frankly, I have to wonder if some of their decision was based on greed.

Every US rider should rally up and purchase goods made only in the USA! I'm proud to say that all the bikes in my quiver are built right here!

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Anyone reading this post should stop reading and start packing the car for a trip to Plattekill!

My first experience riding at Plattekill began in 1995. One would assume I'd have the place memorized. Quite the contrary, I always seem to stumble on (or bring back from the dead) new trails.

The network of trails at Plattekill are so vast, it is simply impossible to mentally map them out. Trails become even less recognizable during the Fall season. Some trails are so old they're new!

Are you stressing on the economy? Put it behind you! Yesterdays weather was pristine, the trails mint and the views spectacular. I've DHed at almost every resort from Whistler to Mt Saint Annes and no place can compare to Plattekill!

The DOWN Cycles crew had a spectacular time this past weekend! Top off the best conditions all year with three old school Brooklyn TMX's and you got yourself a recipe for DOWN.

Beers, Bro's and _ _ _ _. Put a smile on your face, get up to Plattekill and fill in the blanks for yourself. The place should have been packed 10/19/8. I think we counted 20 riders in all on the mountain. So very strange???

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Once again the Chain Stretcher race is upon us!

This weekend October 5th Blue Mountain Reservation will host the 2008 "Chain Stretcher" Norba sanctioned XC event.

The WMBA crew always picks the choice trails for the race and this year is no exception. The length of the track has been reduced to less than 8 miles per lap (racers request) and "My Favorite Trail" and the Peekskill sections have been dropped. Both Upper and Lower SIS, Stinger and a section of Mix Monster will keep things interesting.

DOWN Cycles is offering up $150, $75, $50 CASH prizes for any team riders who place 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place finishes! Just ride with the jersey and fly the DOWN colors for the race!

Speaking of prizes, DOWN Cycles is also donating some very cool swag for all race winners for the Beginner and Sport Categories! Pint glasses, filled with socks and or chain checker tools (I thought would be appropriate considering the name of the race), stickers, water bottles, T shirts etc..

Good Luck to everyone who signs up. I will be out there once again trying to fight off leg cramps. This year I'll be on my EWR. Yes, I have decided to not race on my IF cross bike.

A heads up to everyone: The new section of Mix Monster is open! I rolled up Sunday ready to help with the new section and the trail was already done! I think the guys finished in like 4 days!

Anyway, I got some fresh tracks on some familiar terrain as the new section of Mix Monster crosses directly over some of the old renegade DH runs. This new section of trail rides best one way and is thrilling to say the least. I can't say I don't miss the wide open pinner section of old, but the new line has it going on with techy off cambers, some steeps and packed in rock gardens.

This trail section is not in the race,thankfully, as it need to be broken in and feels like you're riding on flat tires.

A huge thank you goes out to the guys who dedicated their time and energy to build those stream crossing rock gardens! A lot of time was spent cutting in shelves to ride on as well.

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Down Cycles 10 year anniversary party!!!

Thank you to all the customers who support the shop. This Saturday August 16th 2008 is a celebration for all to enjoy. Come by for the event and meet Eric Carter, professional mountainbike racer for the Mongoose Team.

That's right, Eric Carter the legend is coming to my rinky dink prison, I mean DOWN Cycles to sign some autographs, chit chat with the droolers and eat some pizza/burritos. Maybe you'll get some swag if you time it right.

We are setting up a bunny hop contest to keep everyone occupied. It's not going to be one of those sanctioned contests. Just a bunch of knuckheads hopping over a pole.

This event should be pretty chill, good times, bikes, food and your favorite rider of all time, EC stylin and profile-in.

This event is going down (it's all about down) on Saturday August 16th. Eric Carter is in the area for the Jeep DS race that's at Diablo Freeride Park the following weekend. He's building the track for Diablo, so he should arrive around 3:00 or so. Call DOWN Cycles if you need further information.


From South: Take Rt 9A North to Rt 9 North (9A N merges into 9 N around the Ossining area). Get off the Montrose Exit. Make a right off the exit (you can see the shop from the exit ramp) and we are the 4th drive on the left. 2015 Albany Post Rd. Do not plug this address into your GPS. Your GPS will send you in the wrong direction!!!

From North, Taconic State Parkway: Get off the "Underhill Rd" exit. Make right off the exit ramp. At bottom of Underhill Rd, (road ends) take a right on Rt129. Take Rt 129 all the way into the town of Croton (Watch out for the cops in town). At second light take right (follow signs to Rt 9 North). You will go through 1 light (cross over Rt 9a, Albany Post Rd) and the entrance to Rt9 North will be on the right. Get on the high way and now follow the directions I have above "From South" to get to the shop. I know it sounds weird to now be south of us, but trust me this is the easiest way to get to the shop.

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Summer is now in full effect and the DH race scene is on fire! Racing on the weekends is all fine and dandy, but what are we doing to stay fit during the week?

Some riders weight train, some push their big bikes up local runs, and some ride a bit of XC. "XC" stands for cross country for all you die hard DHer's that only own one bike.

DHer's that love to ride/train on the XC bike will be happy to know that their now is the perfect hardtail/XC bike for us! Most XC specific bikes have geometry designed, well for XCer's. Downhill riders prefer geometry that is completely off the scale as far as XC racers are concerned. Any bike can be pedaled to the top of a mountain, but their true colors shine coming back down.

Training on today's hardtails is hairball scary for the DHer who pins it around turns and down steeps. Lets face it, we are going to charge full speed regardless of the bike we are on. The problem is, we get pitched and injured while we are trying to simply stay fit.

Low and behold, EWR to the rescue. Eastern Woods Research built a hardtail frame back in the day designed for aggressive riders. They called it the "Woods Bike". They're now back in business, producing the "Original Woods Bike". Long as a truck, low and slack, this is the bike we have all been waiting for.

I'm riding on a size large (17.5" with a 24.5" top tube). I slapped on a 70mm Thompson stem, DeeMax with 2.1 tubeless and got myself a ripper. Finally I can ride my XC bike in the attack position (chest over the bars, elbows up) and not worry about the consequences.

The OWB is full chromoly, has got some strange, lugged disc vertical drop outs, is 1 1/8 and is made with love. As of now, two sizes are available, 15" and 17". $1300 may not seem cheap, but I must say, she's worth every penny! Good times brother. Down Cycles can get cha one if ya likes. We require half down for deposit. Special order color will tack on another bean.

Cheers, AJ

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Avalanche has released hydraulic bottom out cones, similar to the cones they use in their high end DHF fork, for the Marzocchi 888 forks! These quality parts mount inside the forks lowers and slow down the ending stroke bottom out with hydraulic pressure.

With the Avalanche tapered cones installed, harsh bottom outs are a thing of the past. Finally your DH fork can be set up soft for supple performance without any worries of destroying the fork on the big hits!

I tested the cones on my 2007 Marzocchi 888 RC2X. I had an entire season on the fork without the cones. Like all Marzocchi forks I have owned, the 07 888’s bottom out is harsh. I’m sure most of you are familiar with the metal to metal clank that alerts you that you have used up all 8 inch’s.

I took this same 07 fork off a G out on a local training run that always bottomed my fork. Many times my wrists would hurt from the impact. I prepared for the worst, suddenly, no bottom out, at least no perceived bottom out. Upon closer inspection, my fork used up 7 7/8” travel.

Buyers/Riders should know that with the cones installed, 7 7/8” travel is all you get. The cones take up a bit of space internally, but this issue is a small price to pay for the performance upgrade.

So there you have it, the cones do the job! I have beaten my fork to death trying to bottom it out “clank” style. The Avalanche cones simply take the hit and butter out the forks bottom out. This upgrade is a must for aggressive riders. You will ride with more confidence and less wrist fatigue. Both races and freeriders will benefit from this modification.

The AVA Advantage 888 Bottoming cones can be installed at DOWN Cycles!

1 Update

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The first year 2006 Mongoose EC-D was impressive, well everything but the tribal graphics.8| The EC-D seemed to come out of nowhere, spanking the competition with performance and affordability. For 2007, mongoose nailed the graphics and really didn’t change much else as far as frame design. The 2008 Goose has a bunch of functional upgrades that make it that much more desirable!

=> Read more!

4 Updates

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^:^^XXX!A few years back I wrote an article about a new type/style of bicycle, “Freeride” bikes. I couldn’t help but wonder if this style of bike was a fad. I suggest you read this old article first before continuing on.

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10 Updates

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I was inspired to venture into uncharted waters after reading an article in Bikehouse magazine. The story was about a fellow who felt he was addicted to cycling and would make an attempt to abstain for thirty days. Needless to say, kicking an addiction is brutal for anyone and he was beaten after only eleven days. Inspired and just a bit curious, I also decided to test my will and abstain for as long as possible from mountain biking.

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