Archive for September, 2013

Transition Covert 29 Review on MoreDirt.com!

Review: Transition Covert 29

It feels like a lifetime since I have sat down to write about a bike. Probably because I’ve been having too much fun on the Transition Covert 29er that we’ve got our hands on for review.


If you cast your minds back to my review of the Commencal Meta AM2 29er you will remember that I am a firm believer in the bigger wheel size and I can’t really see any reason why more people who ride around trail centres aren’t onboard wagon wheelers yet but that is a different article for another day.

We bumped into Sean from Surf Sales (The UK Distributor for Transition) manning his stand back at the Fort William World cup and we hatched a plan to review the Covert 29. It hasn’t seen a lot of coverage on any other press outlet in print or online for one reason or another and we wanted to change that!

First Impressions

As with most engineering in the world. If something looks right it usually performs right. I was hoping that the Covert 29 fell in that category.


It certainly looks awesome and not like one of those bike that smacks you in the face and says “I’m using massive wheels!” The low rise wide carbon bars state the real intention of this bike though. It wants to go fast, jump high, rip turns so hard the tyres fall off the rims and still pedal back up the other side.

On the spec side of things… I don’t think that there’s a single part that I would upgrade from how the bike arrived with us and that’s pretty rare. Then again it’s the highest model on offer from Transition with a pricetag at an eyewatering 5125.00 with this build.

Where does the Covert 29 really fit?

The 26” Covert has occupied the 160mm trail weapon slot at Transition for the last few years but for 2013 they decided to introduce the Covert 29 and then Transition pretty much realigned the rest of the trail bike range to squeeze it in including a redesign of the Bandit 29 to give a bit more clarity between the bikes.

Transition settled on 140mm travel, a shortish top tube and tweaked angles from its 26” brother for the Covert 29. In the world of the 29er it’s 68° head angle puts it at the slacker end of things but then this bike doesn’t have intentions like most other 29ers. The complete package adds up to a bike that’s stable, fast, fun and is just dying to be thrashed.

It also has what I would refer to as a “desirable part list” straight from the factory! The model we have got our hands on is the “Build 1” otherwise known as the mutts nuts ($$$). No expense has been spared from the Easton Haven Wheels to the Carbon Bars, XT/XTR drivetrain and Fox Float CTD Boost Valve forks and shock. All this could be yours for the grand sum of over £5000. There’s no denying that’s a hell of a lot of money but you can’t deny you are getting a hell of a lot of bike for your money!

Frame: 6061 Heat Treated Aluminum, 140mm, tapered headtube, 12×142 axle
Fork: Fox 34 Float Fit CTD Kashima
Shock: Fox Float CTD Boost Valve Kashima
Wheels: Easton Haven 29 UST
Tires: Schwalbe Hans Dampf
Brakes: Shimano XT
Cranks: Shimano XT
Rear Derailleur: Shimano XTR 10spd
Front Derailleur: Shimano XT
Shift Levers: Shimano XT
Seatpost: Rockshox Reverb
Handlebar: Easton Havoc Carbon
Stem: Easton Haven

Suspension

The Covert 29 we had featured Fox’s awesome 34 140mm travel CTD Fit Kashima coated forks with trail adjust and the Fox Float CTD Adjust Boost Valve Kashima coated shock which have plenty of adjustment but for me still raised a talking point.


Up front I find it impossible to fault the Float 34’s. Set your sag correctly for your weight, 6 clicks of rebound and hit the trails. The Trail adjust feature is brilliant for someone who tends to be a bit more aggressive and wants either a bit more support from the front end or someone who takes it a bit a easier and wants a plusher ride when in the “trail” mode that added a whole new aspect to how I set up and consequently rode the bike.

The rear end of the bike was a bit of a different kettle of fish.

The Fox Float CTD Adjust Boost Valve Kashima coated shock was plush enough alright but unless you were taking it easy I was just blowing through the rear travel like no ones business.


It’s either a combination of a too lighter tune or just too much volume in the rear shock that was causing the problems but I find it a bit frustrating that when the bike is being spec’d out with the help of Fox the factory set up is only going to work for you if your less than about 11 stone or you ride the bike like a complete fairy.

It’s something you could very easily sort with a volume spacer kit for about £25 or a custom tune but I find hard to stomach when this exact model costs in excess of 5000 of your english pounds.

I feel the word thrashing is getting thrown around alot in this review but thats exactly what the bike requires to get the most from it. For me, the shock isn’t up to it.

Component breakdown

Everything was absolutely flawless but I wouldn’t expect anything less. The shifting from the Shimano XT/XTR combination was crisp and effortless with the chain being kept in check with the brilliant clutch rear mech and MRP 2X guide. It keeps everything quiet and for me a quiet bike is a fast bike.


Shimano I-spec mounted shifters and XT brake combo made for a tidy handlebar setup. It’s a shame that couldn’t be said for the cabling!

The cockpit was roomy but it was hard to make all the hoses and cables coming from the controls not look like a mess. Internal cable routing would be the only answer to this one for me but Transition only provide this on the Carbon Covert. Something they will hopefully address across the range for 2014!


Shimano’s XTR Rear mech was flawless. Crisp shifting, no weight penalty and looks the business!

The Ride

It sounds silly but getting a bike that correctly fits you is 100% my first port of call when testing. I would like to think that all bikes I ride with the intention of review start with the same base feeling so that you can genuinely feel and distinguish the differences between them. Even with the big 29” wheels(Which do actually still feel quite big for my squat 5 foot 8 frame) I felt like the bike as a whole was working really well for me.

The harder you rode it, the further you leaned into the turns and the less time you spent braking the more the bike as a whole played into your hands and the wider your grin became.

Larger wheels provide more grip. There’s absolutely no doubting that, especially when you can get your tyre pressures dialled. There is more rubber in contact with the dirt and consequently for smaller, lighter riders this can make 29ers feel a bit cumbersome and almost like your not reaching the ragged edge with a bike. It’s a hard one to explain as most of the time you may still be traveling the same speed as your 26” wheeled buddies but just in a whole lot more control.


I started to experience this with the Covert 29 but when I’d settled in got off the brakes and took a heap sized spoon of man up I re discovered the ragged edge and oh boy was that faster and more fun a lot of other trail bikes. I had one of the most fun afternoons I’ve had on a mountain bike in a long time. Blasting through bracken and drifting loamy turns I finally understood how the Covert worked, What it was good at and how I could make it work for me. In time spending more time on the bike it was on the whole more of the same and I really struggled to find anything wrong with it for me apart from the rear shock set up.

It only makes me think how awesome the Covert 29 could be if you could set the sag correctly on it!

The bike was great in the air on more freeride type lines and was pretty good at pedalling thanks to Fox climb mode on the suspension and the Schwalbe Hans Dampf’s with a suprising lack of rolling resistance from what is quintessentially a soft compound intermediate tyre. It gobbled up the dreaded false flat fireroad climbs which normally would of had me grimmising!

Conclusion

As big wheeled bikes go the Covert is about as aggressive as they come in the geometry stakes. That slack head angle and small cockpit mean the bike is just crying out to be ridden as hard as you can.


It’s fun, fast and long meaning its stable at high speeds hurtling fire road but pop the seat up and stick it in the granny gear and the Covert 29 will still climb with the same speed and composure only seen in much more cross country focused bikes.

I hate to use the “one for all” term but I genuinely feel that’s what the Covert 29 can provide. It’s a complete big wheeled quiver killer.

What a ride!

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Bike Checks: New Build on a Transition Covert Carbon!

We will be featuring bikes that are build at Tionghin from now and having a bike checks on the complete set up!

Bike Checks on a Transition Covert Carbon!

Carbon to finish the entire Transition Covert build!

We do provide Race Shield protections on your bikes with additional cost on the labour charges too!

Read on..


Complete build of the Transition Covert!


Upfront of the complete build.


Fox 36 Float for the front end.


Cockpit with Shimano XT shifter and brakes on Answer Protapered handlebar.


Front drive train with Shimano XT crankset and front derailleur.


Rear transmission with Shimano XT shadow rear derailleur and cassette.


Hope Pro 2 Evo hubs on ZTR Flow rims.


Fox RC4 rear shock for the bottom end.


Rock Shock Reverb.


Internal cable routing.

Components List
Frame: 2014 Transition Covert Carbon 26 Medium
Fork: 2013 Fox 36 Float RC2 tapered
Headset: FSA gravity tapered sealed headset
Wheels: Hope Pro 2 Evos hubs on ZTR Flow EX rim and Wheelsmith DB14 spokes
Tires: Maxxis High Roller front and rear 2.35
Bar: Answer Protaper DH low riser bar
Grip: ODI Rouge lock on Grip
Crank: Shimano XT Double crankset
Brake: Shimano XT Disc Brakes
Rotor: Shimano XT Ice 6 bolt rotor 180mm front and 160mm rear
Stem: Transition Temple Lite stem in 50mm
Seatpost: Rock Shock Reverb
Pedal: Wellgo BI64 Pedals
Cassette: Shimano XT 11t – 36t
Shifters: Shimano XT Shifters
Rear derailleur: Shimano XT shadow plus
Front derailleur: Shimano XT double e-type
Chain Guide Device: –
Chain: Shimano XT 10 speed chain

Stay tune for more upcoming new builds and bike checks!

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Atomlab products are in!!!!

2013 Atomlab Pimplite Rim
Stronger. Lighter. Faster. Tough as hell.

2013 Atomlab SupreliteSL Rim
Stronger. Lighter. Faster. Nothing epitomizes our slogan more than our rims. This year we are introducing the SupreliteSL. The Suprelite SL rims are a tubeless, ultra lightweight 25mm wide all-mountain/XC rim.

2013 Atomlab Suprelite Rim
Stronger. Lighter. Faster. Nothing epitomizes our slogan more than our rims.

2013 Atomlab Pimp DHR Rim
Stronger. Lighter. Faster. Nothing epitomizes our slogan more than our rims. The Pimp2/DHR is 34mm wide with loads of strength. Construction to reduce the flat spot/dent problems of the original Trailpimps, but they’ve still got a largely indestructible reputation on the trails.

Atomlab Torque Nipples
Torque nipples are lighter and stronger than standard brass nipples. They not only lighten each wheel by over 20 grams, their wide alloy interface creates a stronger, stiffer wheel. The Torx socket back (instead of a slot for a flathead screwdriver) makes it easier to build wheels and the large wrench interface makes it much easier to tension the spokes. Also, the connection at the spoke hole has a larger pivot range which reduces the stress on the spoke.

2013 Atomlab Pimplite rear hub
Precision machined. Our amazingly reliable Pimplite hubs are CNC machined and feature our enhanced 102-click engagement system. They are also some of the lightest thru-axle hubs on the market. You can feel the difference.

2013 Atomlab Pimplite front 20 hub
Precision machined. They are also some of the lightest thru-axle hubs on the market. You can feel the difference.

2013 Atomlab Pimplite micro-drive Singlespeed kit

2013 Atomlab Pimplite Singlespeed kit

2013 Atomlab Pimplite chain Tensioners

2013 Atomlab Pimplite WRX Pedals
Atomlab wrote the book on the modern platform pedal. We created the first extruded CNC pedal that started it all 16 years ago. We also innovated the modern DU/I-Glide bushing design. We’ve continued to push pedal technology forward with our new Pimp and Pimplite 100% CNC machined pedals – Light, smooth, and indestructable.

2013 Atomlab Pimplite DJ Handlebars
Once again, stronger, lighter, faster is the perfect way to describe our bars. These 750mm wide bars are made from 2014 aluminum which is incredibly light and strong and is more resistent to snapping than 7005 or 6061. These are the last bars you may ever need.

2013 Atomlab Pimp Seatpost

2013 Atomlab Headset

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Bike Checks: New Build on a Transition Covert!

We will be featuring bikes that are build at Tionghin from now and having a bike checks on the complete set up!

Bike Checks on a Transition Covert!

Yellow it is, bits and pieces build to all mountain machine.

We do provide Race Shield protections on your bikes with additional cost on the labour charges too!

Read on..


Complete build of the Transition Covert!


Upfront of the yellow build.


Fox 34 Float CTD for the shock absorber.


Cockpit with Shimano XT brakes and Sram X0 shifters.


Crankset on wolf tooth ring and Straitline pedals!


Rear transmission with Sram X0 rear derailleur and cassette.


Hope pro 2 evo hubs on Nuke proof rims made by Sun ringle.


Shimano XT cooling fin brakes.


Fox DHX RC4 to finsih the rear Covert handling.

Components List
Frame: 2014 Transition Covert 26 Medium
Fork: 2014 Fox 34 Float CTD 150mm tapered
Headset: FSA gravity tapered sealed headset
Wheels: Hope Pro 2 Evos hubs on Nuke Proof rim and Wheelsmith DB14 spokes
Tires: Schawble Hans Dampf front and rear 2.35
Bar: Nuke Proof riser bar
Grip: Transition lock on Grip
Crank: Shimano XT arms with Wolf tooth 34t chain ring
Brake: Shimano XT Disc Brakes
Rotor: Avid G3SL 180mm front and 160mm rear
Stem: Kore 31.8 clamp diameter stem in 50mm
Seatpost: Truvativ seatpost
Pedal: Straitline Amp Pedals
Cassette: Sram X0 11t – 36t
Shifters: Sram X0 Shifters
Rear derailleur: Sram X0
Front derailleur: –
Chain Guide Device: –
Chain: FSA 10 speed chain

Stay tune for more upcoming new builds and bike checks!

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Bike Checks: New Build on a Pivot Mach 6 Carbon!

We will be featuring bikes that are build at Tionghin from now and having a bike checks on the complete set up!

Bike Checks on a Pivot Mach 6 Carbon!

The Mach 6 has been in development for over two years and the excitement brewing behind this bike is nothing short of explosive. This has honestly been the hardest secret for us to keep quiet. However, knowing the level of bike we’ve developed makes the unveiling of this incredible machine that much sweeter.

The Mach 6 isn’t like anything else in our line-up. Hell, it’s not quite like anything we’ve built before! It’s an all new machine designed from the ground up to optimize the 27.5” wheel platform and take the growing Enduro racing scene by storm. The Mach 6 is built with the singular purpose of going faster than anything else in the most aggressive terrain (both up and down).

The Mach 6 features the next generation of long travel dw-link design. With features like 6.1” (155mm) of travel, a low BB height (13.6”), longer top tubes, lower stand-over, and a slack head angle (66 degrees), built around an ultra stiff and responsive carbon chassis, the Mach 6 is a bike designed to push your capabilities and reward those willing to push the limits. We optimized the design with internal top tube cable routing, internal dropper post routing, ISCG 05 tabs, and a look that screams of speed. The Mach 6 absolutely rips for the aggressive trail rider.

The faster you go in technical terrain, the more confidence it provides. The Mach 6 rewards the pro enduro rider with new found levels of speed and performance and the enthusiast, a bike that will take your riding confidence to a whole new level.

We do provide Race Shield protections on your bikes with additional cost on the labour charges too!

Read on..


Complete build of the Pivot Mach 6 Carbon!


Customise demo build for everyone.


Upfront of the complete build, one and only for now!


2014 Fox 34 Float CTD racing shock.


2014 redesign Fox Upper legs.


Cockpit with Shimano XT brakes and shifters.


Internal cable routing for clean and mud protection.


2014 Fox Rear Shock with piggy back and CTD equiped with tuned for the DW-Link.


All new Wolf tooth chain ring to remove any chain guides upfront!


Shimano XT shadow Plus rear derailleur and cassette.


Atomlab Super Lite rims and Profile racing hubs.


204 points of engagement!


Rear braking with Shimano XT Ice rotors and pads.


All new linkage for the Mach 6.


The carbon!


Answer AM stem.

Components List
Frame: 2014 Pivot Mach 6 Carbon 27.5
Fork: 2014 Fox 34 Float CTD 150mm tapered
Headset: Pivot tapered sealed headset
Wheels: Sun Ringle Dirty Flea front and Profile Racing 204 Elite rear hubs on Atomlab SupreliteSL rim and Wheelsmith DB14 spokes with Atomlab Torx nipple
Tires: Kenda Nevegal front 2.35 and Kenda Honey Badger rear 2.35
Bar: Pivot Carbon riser bar
Grip: Pivot lock on Grip
Crank: Shimano XT arms with Wolf tooth 30t chain ring
Brake: Shimano XT Disc Brakes
Rotor: Shimano XT Ice 180mm front and 160mm rear
Stem: Answer AM 31.8 clamp diameter stem in 60mm
Seatpost: FSA SLK carbon seatpost
Pedal: –
Cassette: Shimano XT 11t – 36t
Shifters: Shimnano XT Shifters
Rear derailleur: Shimano XT Shadow
Front derailleur: –
Chain Guide Device: –
Chain: Shimano XT 10 speed chain

Stay tune for more upcoming new builds and bike checks!

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First Look: Manitou Mattoc Fork

Manitou hasn’t had a top level 160mm fork in a number of years, but for 2014 the company is coming out swinging with the introduction of the Mattoc, their high end, air sprung all-mountain fork. In development for almost two years, the fork has 34mm stanchions and will be available with 140, 150 or 160mm of travel for 26” and 27.5” bikes, with an additional 170mm option available for 26ers. External adjustments include low and high speed compression damping, hydraulic bottom out, and low speed rebound.

Manitou Mattoc Details:
Intended use: all-mountain/enduro
26”/27.5″ travel: 140, 150, or 160mm
170mm available for 26″ only
34mm stanchion tubes
Dorado air sprung
HSC, LSC, rebound, and hydraulic bottom out adjustments
Tapered steerer
15mm HexLock thru axle
Weight: 1877g (Pro), 1990g (Expert)

What makes the Mattoc especially enticing is its use of technology borrowed from Manitou’s Dorado downhill fork, a fork heralded for its plush feel and excellent adjustability. Like the Dorado, the Mattoc uses independent oil seals and dust wipers to reduce the chance of leakage or blow outs, and a hydraulic bottom out adjuster that controls the last 32mm of the fork’s stoke separately from the other compression settings. The Mattoc also uses the Dorado’s large volume, low pressure air spring, which is designed to be moderately progressive throughout its stroke for a controlled, bottomless feel.

A look at the fork’s internals reveals a number of well thought out features in the Mattoc’s new Multi Control Compression (MC²) damper, particularly the way that the high speed compression (HSC) damping is adjusted. When the external HSC dial is turned it adds more preload to an internal shim, accomplishing the same feat that adding a thicker shim would do, but without the need to pull apart the fork. Low speed compression (LSC) damping is changed via a tapered needle oil system – turning the external knob alters the volume of an orifice, changing the fork’s damping characteristics. There is also the option to add on a handlebar mounted remote to change the LSC on the fly.


A closer look at the Mattoc’s MC² compression damper. The far left portion is the hydraulic bottom out control, and just to the right of it, above the o-ring and below the silver ports, is the high speed compression shim. Low speed compression is altered via a needle valve inside the damper.

The Mattoc’s shim-based rebound damping is adjusted by turning the dial located on the bottom of the right leg. Turning the rebound dial controls a taper needle oil system, with different shim stacks available from Manitou for riders that want to fine tune the fork’s rebound damping. This high level of tuneability should make the Mattoc especially appealing to garage tinkerers, a fact that Manitou took into consideration when designing the fork. They wanted a fork that the end user could rebuild at home, reducing the downtime that occurs when sending a fork away to be serviced.


The Mattoc’s compression and bottom out resistance control dials are at the top of the fork, and the air valve and rebound adjust are at the bottom. The Mattoc uses Manitou’s signature reverse arch, and has separate oil seals and dust wipers.

The Mattoc Pro weighs in at a claimed 1877 grams, and the Expert is reportedly 1990 grams. The weight difference comes from the Pro’s use of a cartridge based rebound damper. The Mattoc Pro will retail for $860, with the Expert’s price still to be determined. There will also be an even lower priced Comp model that uses a different air spring. White and black color options will be offered as well.

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Wolf Tooth Chain Ring are here!!

Wolf Tooth Chain Ring
Wolf Tooth chainrings are machined from 7075-T651 billet aluminum on precision CNC equipment and anodized black. Our tooth profile requires much more machining time and tighter tolerances than a standard chainring but the results are worth it. Say goodbye to bent and misaligned chain-guides and say hello to easy drivetrain setup and maintenance. Best of all, you are not locked into just one drivetrain brand or a specific crankset — we make chainrings to fit almost everything.

All Wolf Tooth Components products are proudly made in the USA.

  • Colour: Black
  • Size: 104 x 32t, 104 x 34t, 104 x 36t

Grab them fast while stock last.

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