2012 Norco Sight Review

26er Pro Reviews

Norco has been a household name for mountain bikes here in British Columbia, Canada for as long as I can remember. They are a company that is continuously evolving and innovating to meet the demand of the riders, as well as building a bike that can take the punishment of the local terrain.

The Sight is the evolution of the popular Fluid; a 140mm trail bike that is intended to be as happy on the climb up as it is on the descents. There is a lot of new technology that has been packed into the frame, all of which is covered in this previous article. The shorter chainstays, slacker head angle and lower bottom bracket are some of the more notable geometry changes from the Fluid.  It’s offered in five sizes:

This review will be split between myself and Chris to give a couple of different viewpoints. Neither of us have any affiliation with Norco or any other bike company, although we both currently ride Norco Fluid LTs (Which Chris reviewed back in 2008).  Chris and I ride together a lot, and we ride a huge variety of terrain on any bike, Chris has a bias towards very technical descents, I love a good techy climb. I’m 6’ tall, weigh 160lb at the time of this preliminary look at the bike. I love to fiddle with settings, so I am always tweaking looking for that perfect setup for the ride. Chris likes to set it and forget it.

The Bike
The bike provided is a medium 2012 Sight 1. The component spec on the bike is top notch, a full XT group set, including XT wheels, except for the rear derailleur which is the new XTR Shadow Plus. Suspension is handled by a Fox RP23 with adaptive logic, and a Fox 32 Talas 140 RLC fork, interestingly, neither the shock or fork have the Kashima coating which seems like a bit of an oversight on a bike that is kitted out to such a high spec. The cockpit consists of an Easton Haven Carbon bar with Norco branded lock on grips and a Norco branded 60mm stem all turning on an internal FSA headset. A WTB Silverado saddle is mounted to a RockShox Reverb seat post. The bike rolls on Kenda Slant Six tyres. Retail cost on the bike as tested is US $5675

The entire bike has a sleek, fast look to it, the graphics are tidy and the red linkage just jumps out and really ties it all together. The hydroformed tubing is curvy, with some very interesting tube shapes. The curves are elegant and not overly bendy like some bikes, and the headtube on the frame is massive to increase weld contact area and strength. There is a fair amount of room for tyre clearance in the stays; the stock 2.35 Kendas are quite large and there is no issue with space. I would imagine that a 2.4-2.5 tyre would be no problem in the frame, although it would be a bit of a mismatch to the bikes intended purpose. The front derailleur is mounted via a bracket to the chainstay, maintaining optimal positioning relative to the chain throughout suspension travel. ISCG05 tabs are included if you want to mount a chain guide. There are clips for a dropper post cable that run along the top tube, although even after a few rides, there is some scuffing on the paint where the cables have rubbed.

As provided, the cables were a little too long and they rattled around a little bit. I would hope that this is not the case on every Sight, as it is an easy thing to set up when the bike is built and drastically improves the aesthetic appeal of the bike. I tied some of the cables together to minimise how much they rattled around, and will likely shorten them at a later date.

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  • Izzy says:

    I’m really looking forward to the update. I hope this isn’t one of those short reviews that promises a longer-term update but then is forgotten eventually.
    This bike is near the top of my lust list.

    • Biggles604 says:

      The review will go up towards the end of summer. A short term review is written from within the honeymoon phase of ownership, so it’s never truly ideal. After a season of use, there will always be problems and issues, and the true test is whether those issues are deal breakers or not.

  • Lebikerboy says:

    $5675.00 is nuts for an aluminum framed bike…

  • DrDale says:

    Did I miss it, or was weight not mentioned

  • Biggles604 says:

    Weight is just over 27lbs.
    $5700 is the MSRP, and while it is a lot of money, it is an incredibly high spec with nothing on their that needs upgrading. The Sight 2 is much more reasonably priced, and will offer the same great riding performance of the Sight 1, or, there is a frameset available with a RS reverb for $2100, which is really competitive.

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