4860 - 20/03/2018 14:00:13

The RockShox Lyrik has long been considered one of the best enduro forks money can buy. But the competition is getting fiercer each year and it was time for RockShox to step up their game and make a great fork even better. We tested the new RockShox Lyrik RC2 and will tell you why there’s a good reason to rejoice even if you own one of the older models. The new RockShox Lyrik features a Charger 2 RC2-damper and an optimised DebonAir air-chamber. Travel options 150-180 mm | Wheel sizes 27.5″ and 29” | Price € 1,109 googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); When developing the new Lyrik the engineers at RockShox focused on three fundamental questions: How can we improve small-bump response? How can we improve performance under load (i.e. when braking). What can we do to reduce the rider’s fatigue? .embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; } In order to achieve their development-objectives, RockShox gave the Lyrik RC2 a major overhaul – and all of the changes happened on the internals of the fork. The result is a new friction-optimized DebonAir air-spring with a revised spring-curve and a Charger 2 RC2 damper with even more adjustment options. In addition, the new Lyrik is now available with a shorter offset in both 27.5” (37 mm offset) and 29” (42 mm offset) wheel sizes. The colour options are red and black. Interestingly: The Lyrik is also available with up to 180 mm travel for 29” wheels. The decisive updates hide inside the core of the new RockShox Lyrik. The DebonAir air-spring and the new Charger 2 RC2-damper-cartridge. The new RockShox Lyrik is available with 150 to 180 mm of travel… … and different offset-options. The casting of the Lyrik remains unchanged. The shorter offset is achieved by changing the fork-crown. Less friction and more volume – the DebonAir air-spring Most of us will associate the DebonAir name with RockShox’s rear-shocks. But behind this popular name stands a larger negative-air chamber with better response and an optimised spring-curve. With their latest update, RockShox increased the negative air-chamber of the Lyrik by a whopping 42 %. As a result, the new fork is now even more sensitive over small bumps and offers more support especially in the mid-stroke. We will come back to this later. The new DebonAir logo on the stanchion tells us more about the inner life of the fork All forks and shocks have one big enemy: friction. If this is too high your fork won’t absorb impacts effectively nor recover from compression the way it should. If you serviced your fork from time to time you’ll probably know how badly friction can affect the performance of your suspension. In order to reduce friction inside the new Lyrik RockShox introduced an updated CNC’d-aluminium seal head with integrated bushing to replace the previous plastic-version. This apparent small update is said to reduce friction significantly. According to Rockshox the new seal head glides inside the airshaft 73% smoother in the initial stroke. This figure is said to reach 86% with directional changes such as the transition between compression and decompression stages (Stick Slip-Friction). And of course you can adapt the spring-curve to your personal liking by playing around with the air-settings and by adding or removing tokens. Left old, right new: thanks to the new machined-aluminium seal head with integrated bushing RockShox reduced friction significantly. Two small air-intakes let the air flow directly into the air shaft. This allows for an increase in volume of the negative air chamber The new DebonAir air-chamber is also sold separately as an upgrade for previous Lyrik, PIKE and Yari models and costs € 47. More adjustment options for a perfect setup With the new Charger 2 RC2 cartridge RockShox customers and riders will be able to tune their fork with even more precision. The new Lyrik RC2 features an external dial that allows you to adjust the rebound and the low/high-speed compression settings. By turning the high-speed-dial you preload the shim stack in the internals. You have five clicks at your disposal where the middle-click corresponds to the setup of the previous non-adjustable Charger 2 cartridge and two more clicks each side allow you to set the fork either firmer or plusher. The low-speed compression dial has 20 clicks. An upgrade many riders have been waiting for: the externally-adjustable high-speed compression dial on the Charger 2 RC2-damper   The new RockShox Lyrik offers coil-feel with the adjustment options of an air spring. The high-speed compression dial of the new Charger 2 RC-2 cartridge has five clicks. The central position corresponds to the setting of the old non-adjustable damper. The new version of the damper now features two additional clicks in each direction to set the fork either firmer or plusher. The new Charger 2 RC2-damper cartridge is also available as an upgrade for all 35 mm RockShox Lyrik and Yari models. Its price: € 259-349. Dialling-in the new RockShox Lyrik is quick and easy but the settings are different from the previous version. Throughout our test we ran the fork mostly with one less token than with the older version. The new RockShox Lyrik RC2 on the trail Despite the cold German winter we had a chance to test the new RockShox Lyrik RC2 thoroughly. We escaped to the sunny mountains of South Tyrol and tested the new Lyrik on the dusty, rocky trails of Latsch. Straight after we jumped on a plane and flew to the southern hemisphere where we put the new Lyrik through one of the toughest, most fun enduro races in the world – the NZ Enduro in New Zealand. In our opinion this was the best way of testing a brand-new enduro fork! We tested the new Lyrik on a RAAW Madonna. Thanks to its aggressive downhill-oriented geometry we were able to push the new Lyrik to its limits. Our work-horse: the RAAW Madonna with the brand-new RockShox Lyrik and the overhauled Super Deluxe RC3 shock We started off with the kind of setup we would normally use with older Lyrik models: more or less 15% of SAG, very little compression-damping and two tokens for good progression. But it only took a few downhill-runs to understand that the new Lyrik needs a different setup. With the settings we were running so far we were never really using all of the travel. So we changed the SAG to about 25 %, removed one of the tokens (the new 160 mm version comes with two) and increased the damping. Once the changes were made we moved the high-speed compression knob in its middle position and left it there for almost the entire test (three clicks from closed). The low-speed compression was almost completely open with 14 clicks from closed. Long and challenging stages were the perfect scenario to test the new Lyrik After the changes the Lyrik literally blossomed and unfolded its full potential. What is truly remarkable are the huge amounts of comfort the Lyrik offers. Even after 18-minute-long stages at the NZ Enduro-race we didn’t have to deal with stiff fingers or aching hands. The fork literally sucks up any kind of small bumps and feels much more defined than its predecessor. The new Lyrik is very defined and offers good feedback with a sensitive response Even on long 18-minute descents the Lyrik totally convinced us. Aching hands anyone? Nope! googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-1'); }); Thanks to an increased mid-stroke support, the new RockShox Lyrik only ever uses the exact amount of travel you need and generally sits higher in its travel. The damper works efficiently and its broad spectrum of very defined clicks allows you to tune the fork with precision. Both hard-core racers and less experienced riders should be able to their perfect setup. While the previous model of the Lyrik required a high degree of progression to deal with hard trail-sections with lots of compressions the new Lyrik generally requires fewer tokens. After the race we were fully convinced: the new RockShox LYRIK is better than ever! The front wheel has tons of traction and never sinks into holes, while recovering quickly from hard compressions. The rebound damping is very well tuned and works well in all scenarios. To what extent the enlarged negative air chamber has a positive influence on the rebound damping, we cannot currently say. We are looking forward to further tests. Conclusions RockShox literally nailed it with their new Lyrik! The previous model was already a hit but the revised version is on a different level in all aspects. The new Lyrik is way more sensitive, sits higher in its stroke and feels much more stable than its predecessor. The overhauled version also gives you more feedback and can be easily adjusted to your specific needs. One more detail we really like is that you can upgrade any your older forks with the modern technology of the new Lyrik. We say: Chapeau RockShox – great Job! Also new: RockShox Super Deluxe 2019 For more information head to sram.com Rumble in the Jungle – the Rock Shox Lyrik proved its full credentials in the New Zealand enduro race. The post First Ride Review: RockShox Lyrik RC2 2019 – the new benchmark in the enduro segment? appeared first on ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine.

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4754 - 09/03/2018 08:00:00

Jackson is now being supported by Trek, and we caught up with him at Pinkbike's Squamish HQ to check out his new extra-small Trek Session.( Photos: 10 )

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4507 - 14/04/2018 06:39:16

No bike has been attracting more attention in recent weeks than the Pole Machine. Manufactured using a process that is entirely unique in the bike industry, it calls previously held notions of design into question before you’ve even swung a leg over. But as soon as you do, you will have a completely new world opened up to you. The Pole Machine is one of the most exciting bikes of 2018. We took it to Spain to review exclusively for you! googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); In a time when the comments on almost every new bike are: “looks like a Session” the Pole Machine looks like it must have been delivered by a UFO. Its curved, flowing forms, the asymmetrical shock mount and the extremely low slung top tube (if you can even call it a tube) lend the bike a unique, extravagant look – at least when you’re looking at it from the drive side. Although Leo Kokkonen, the creator of this special bike, has a distinctive design fetish, he is familiar with the needs of riders and is fully committed to the motto: form follows function. The frame is very clean and tidy on the drive side. Looking at the bike from the opposite side, it reminded us of the Centre Pompidou in Paris designed by Renzo Piano. All cables are routed on the outside of the frame in a special recess, except for the stealth dropper seat post hose which enters the frame through the bottom of the seat tube. On the opposite side, the cables are routed on the outside of the frame. With bosses for up to three bottle cages, you can happily leave your backpack at home. One of the main features of the Pole Machine is the way in which it is manufactured. After Leo cancelled the plan of a carbon bike for ethical reasons (more on that in our interview), in his search for alternatives he came across a method long established in other industries. The frame of the Machine is machined, as the name suggests. CNC machines mill the two halves of the frame out of two large pieces of aluminium. The two halves are then joined together using a special bonding process and a few screws. This makes it possible to use 7075 T6 aluminium, as used in aircraft construction, instead of the classic 7005 aluminium, which is much stiffer and more durable but almost impossible to weld. The seat tube is a regular tube, which is inserted, glued and screwed into the two halves. The frame consists of two machined halves which are then glued and screwed together. The frame would be strong enough with the adhesive alone, but the screws provide additional stiffness and security. Once bonded, the screws can no longer be loosened manually. The seat tube is glued and screwed to the two halves   After cancelling the carbon bike for ethical reasons, I had to find an alternative – Leo Kokkonen Details like the shock mount were not yet final on our bike and will be revised for final production. Super practical: a threaded bottom bracket. The shock of the asymmetrical rear end is mounted at a 90° angle to make room for a very low standover height. The geometry of the Pole Machine The Pole Machine delivers impressive numbers: 180/160 mm travel, 29″ wheels, a very long front triangle (510 mm reach in L), a slack 63.9° head angle and long 455 mm chainstays. But looking at individual numbers makes no sense – what matters is the package as a whole. And Leo knows what he is doing, as he has already proven with the Pole Evolink. For the Machine, the numbers have been adjusted to accommodate the increased travel. Most notable on the Machine is the low standover height of 360 mm across all sizes (measured from the centre of the bottom bracket to the lowest point on the top tube). As you can see: Geometries have undergone extreme changes over the years. On the left the Pole Machine in L, on the right a five year old Ghost in XL. Size S M L XL Top tube 577 mm 607 mm 637 mm 662 mm Head tube 115 mm 125 mm 135 mm 145 mm Head angle 63.9° 63.9° 63.9° 63.9° Seat angle 79° 79° 79° 79° Chainstays 455 mm 455 mm 455 mm 455 mm BB Drop 20 mm 20 mm 20 mm 20 mm Wheelbase 1275 mm 1305 mm 1335 mm 1360 mm Reach 450 mm 480 mm 510 mm 535 mm Stack 640 mm 650 mm 660 mm 670 mm The suspension of the Pole Machine The Pole Machine has a full 180 mm of travel at the front and 160 mm at the rear. Pole’s signature Evolink linkage at the rear consists of two short rocker links. During compression, the virtual pivot point rotates around the bottom bracket. Unlike many other manufacturers, Pole relies on a forward-facing wheel lift curve and greatly reduced anti-squat shortly after the sag point to decouple the suspension from pedal input through the chain. The Machine features an Evolink rear linkage in which the pivot point moves centred around the bottom bracket. The kinematic is progressive and offers a lot of support in the middle range of the travel, making it possible to run the shock with low compression damping. In contrast, Pole relies on lots of high-speed rebound damping to keep the bike in full control during hard, fast hits. Paired with very little low-speed rebound damping, this should generate plenty of traction. This setup should also ensure that the geometry remains constant and predictable in steep sections or through g-outs. No air volume spacers are used in the shocks. During setup 28% sag when seated and approx. 25% standing was ideal. Since tokens influence the ratio of positive and negative air chambers, Leo recommends them only for small, light riders. For big riders with an active riding style who are looking for more progression and bottom out protection, however, he advises to increase the air pressure slightly and to close the high-speed compression. The setup of the Pole Machine During setup, it quickly becomes clear that the Machine is not a bike like any other. There was nothing new about setting up the RockShox Lyrik, but Leo recommended we use a little more air pressure than indicated on the fork. We also used just around 28% SAG (seated), which is stiffer than we are used to on a bike of this class. But what is really surprising is the recommendation to leave the rebound or compression damping completely open. You would expect it to feel like you’re riding a pogo stick, but you’d be in for a surprise. Next level tech-talk: Leo has lots of interesting views and theories. The trails in Malaga on which we tested the Pole Machine are very rocky, steep and demanding, with rocks everywhere, waiting to destroy tyres and rims. For this reason, our test bike was equipped with a MAXXIS Double Down rear tyre and the HuckNorris system in both wheels. Puncture protection was paramount. Built up in this way the bike weighed in at about 15 kg. Rocks, rocks and more rocks: on the trails in Malaga, durability takes precedence over weight. Climbing with the Pole Machine Although we got up most of the climbs with a shuttle, there were enough opportunities to test the climbing abilities of the Machine. Due to the very steep seat tube angle (79°) you’re sat comfortably upright despite the very long top tube and pedal in a much more central position than you’re used to on almost any other bike on the market. As a result, you can put a lot of power to the pedals using the musculature in the back of your legs and buttocks, like you’re spinning. As usual for a bike of this class, you won’t get up the mountain in record time, though with the Machine you will do so efficiently and relaxed. Even in steep sections, the front wheel stuck to the ground. And despite the slack head angle, the front wheel doesn’t tip from side to side in slow in technical sections. Thanks to the steep seat tube angle and upright sitting position, you’ll get to the trailhead in a relaxed manner. The revelation – descending on the Machine The question you’ve all been asking: how does the Pole Machine descend? In two words: blisteringly fast! Despite the unusual geometry, it only takes a few rides to get used to the handling of the bike, and you automatically begin to use the brakes less and less. The biggest adjustment is probably how far ahead you’ve got to read the trail. Due to the effortless speed the Machine carries, you have to look much further ahead than usual. But even if you do let your guard down for a second only to be surprised a rock garden, the bike, with its enormous reserves, will hold your line without flinching. With almost endless reserves, the Pole Machine irons through the roughest sections. One of the Machine’s greatest strengths is its balance. You’re placed very centrally on the bike and so have lots of room to throw your weight around. The weight distribution between the wheels is very balanced, and it’s easy to keep the front wheel weight and in control through curves. If you think that a bike this long can’t cope with tight trails, you’re wrong. Of course, the Pole is exactly the opposite of a BMX and manualing down the road does take more effort, but on the trail, you can still easily manual through rollers and pop off ledges. When things get really tight, you’ll be forced to reposition the rear wheel regardless of the bike you’re on, and the Machine does so without problems. On a bike this long, you have tons of room to move. The balance is excellent and so even tight, winding sections pose no problem. Manuals on the road require a lot of physical effort, but you’ll get through rollers on the trail with ease. The biggest difference between the Evolink 140 and the Machine isn’t only the manufacturing process and the associated optics, but also the increased travel. Compared to the Pole Evolink 140, you don’t immediately feel the Machine’s increased travel at the rear. While the suspension of many bikes currently on the market is very plush with a lot of sag, the Pole gives significantly more feedback without being harsh. Over small bumps, the fast low-speed rebound provides a lot of traction, but with harder hits, the rear end willingly goes through its travel without feeling harsh or uncontrolled towards the end. This is where the Machine differs from the Evolink 140. It remains calmer and more controllable through hard, blunt, high-speed hits. Nevertheless, it is still very lively and agile – despite the enormous wheelbase. The bike is also very balanced in the air. We wouldn’t go dirt jumping with the Machine, but high-speed jumps are easy to master. The support offered by the rear suspension, set up with less sag than usual, also helps in keeping the front wheel weighted, since you don’t sink in towards the rear of the bike. On top of that, you’ll be able to generate a lot of speed on the Machine on flat sections by pushing it through dips in the trail. Even at high speed, the handling is very precise, but without sacrificing flex and comfort due to exaggerated stiffness. We had no objections about the spec. The new RockShox Lyrik with a full 180 mm of travel worked flawlessly. The SRAM XX1 Eagle drivetrain is in a class of its own and the SRAM Code brakes with large 200 mm rotors always provided enough stopping power. We were particularly impressed with the NEWMEN EVOLUTION SL A30 wheels which, despite their low weight and some nasty snake-bites and flats, easily withstood all the abuse we threw at it. Guaranteed fun – the new Pole Machine. googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-1'); }); Pricing and availability The Pole Machine will be offered as a frame-kit as well as two complete bike options. The price is € 3,450 for the frame including shock, € 5,500 for the Machine TR version and € 6,950 for the top Machine EN version as ridden by us. The first frames are already in production, and the bike will be available from June this year. For further questions, simply write an e-mail to: service@polebicycles.com A superbike made in Finland! Conclusion The Pole Machine is a real superbike. Similar to a supercar, the faster you ride, the better it gets. It offers an unprecedented degree of stability and control. It takes the horror out of the scariest trails without feeling sedate or undefined on flat sections. Oh, and there’s the look and the manufacturing process: this bike is a one-of-kind masterpiece! Climbing  | Descending  | Stability  | Agility  | Value for Money  – a bike as unique as this has its price Pros – unique look – pushes your self-confidence to the next level – balanced handling – simultaneously composed and lively Cons – not easy to manual For more information head to polebicycles.com The first ride left a big impression on us, and we are very much looking forward to a long-term review! The post First Ride Review: Pole Machine – Challenging the Status Quo appeared first on ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine.

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