Trail Bike Versatility with Cross Country DNA
It’s about time a company made a bike like this. With the 2013 Instinct, we’ve taken what we learned from our many years of making great cross country bikes and added some trail-destroying 29er attitude. With 130mm of SmoothLink™ rear travel and RIDE-9 adjustable geometry, the Instinct caters to all-day epic riders wanting a more capable bike when things get rough. Or, when things get really rough.
Our RTC-29™ Geometry has proven to make for an extremely nimble and playful ride. We gave the Instinct those same handling characteristics, but also enabled riders to customize the ride with our new RIDE-9 adjustable geometry and suspension rate feature. With RIDE-9, the rider can tune the ride to suit anything from pure cross-country riding to heavy-duty trail riding.
Making a longer travel 29er that mows down trails is one thing, but it has to pedal and climb well too. That’s why we carefully selected the suspension and parts packages to favour efficiency and light weight. Add that to the pedal neutral SmoothLink™ suspension and incredibly stiff ABC™ pivots, and the Instinct is no one trick pony.
Riders looking for a 29er with serious climbing and descending guts should follow their Instinct.
Research & Development Process
The term ‘Research & Development’ tends to be used loosely in the bike industry. We don’t want to speak to what others do, but for Rocky Mountain R&D is a cornerstone in our business. Arguably, we pool more resources in R&D per bike than anyother brand. It’s this commitment to constant innovation that has elevated our brand to where we are now – making some ofthe most innovative products in the industry.
Our team of engineers in Vancouver has the luxury of a full prototype and test facility just steps away from their desks. An idea can be born in a meeting room, drawn on the computer and turned into a prototype in a matter of days. This close connection to the prototype and testing process allows usto be as creative and move as quickly as we want. It’s not unusual to see one of our engineers holding a welding torch or operating the CNC machine. We feel that it’s critical to always know how our bikes go together.
Then the really fun part of the R&D process happens: riding. Our staff is made up of avid mountain bikers and we often head out with our teamathletesto put concepts to the test on some of the most demanding terrain in the world. Sometimes an idea is approved or killed in one short ride and sometimes it takes months.
We pride ourselves on our R&D process that helps us make the innovative products we do, always with the ultimate goal of creating the best riding bikes possible so you can Love the Ride for years to come.
Rocky Mountain Proprietary Technologies: SmoothLink Suspension
Rocky Mountain’s patented SmoothLink™ has been referred to by at least one reviewer as the ‘Holy Grail’ of suspension systems,because it delivers active bump absorption without compromising pedaling efficiency. A big statement, but science backs it up,and please bear with us on the techno-speak for a moment.
SmoothLink™’s design characteristics mean that a line drawn through the main pivot and the rear pivot is always above the rear axle at all points of travel. This is the key differentiator between SmoothLink™ and other suspension systems. The lower linkage member is virtually parallel to the Average Chain Torque Line (ACTL), at all points of travel. THIS is the key to bob-free suspension, since the two are parallel, the chain tension cannot act on the suspension.
Force at Rear Wheel Curve:
Every bike manufacturer will show you a different suspension rate curve for their frame and try to demonstrate to you how their design is superior. However, these curves are all dramatically different, and unless you have a degree in rocket science, indecipherable.
The question riders should ask is how does each curve really FEEL on the trail? We want to change the conversation, and demonstrate what happens with the force at the rear wheel. This is what you the rider will actually experience on your ride.
With SmoothLink™, the force increases steeply at first. This is the platform, giving you a firm pedaling sensation. Once the rear wheel moves through the threshold it flattens out, climbing linearly, giving you that smooth, buttery feeling mid stroke. In the end stroke, the forces begin to climb more steeply again, controlling bottom out. It becomes more and more difficult to reach the hard, bottom out feel, preventing the rider from getting thrown from the bike under heavy impact.
This is what the rider will actually feel: the force at the rear wheel. Hard to push through the first 20mm (propedal). Pro pedal blows off and give smooth, linear feel to 100mm. Suspension ramps from 100-130mm to prevent harsh bottom out,which can throw the rider off.
Rocky Mountain Proprietary Technologies: RIDE-9 System
Riders come in all sizes and ability levels, and the terrain they ride varies. Featured on our 2013 Instinct, our patent pending new RIDE-9 System enables the rider to customize geometry and suspension rate to their riding style and weight, so they can truly Love the Ride.
Nine possible geometry and suspension rate configurations are possible thanks to two interlocking inserts. By having two nested shockmounts, we have a much greater range of adjustability. Rotating these pieces manipulates the position of the rear shock affecting the head angle (67.7° to 69.3°), seat angle (73.7° to 75.3°), and bottom bracket drop (40mm to 20mm) of the bike, as well as the force required to bottom out the suspension.
The dual rotating inserts allow for nine different positions. By moving the shock forward, the geometry slackens and the suspension rate becomes more progressive, giving greater bottom out resistance for aggressive downhill trail riding. When you move the shock backwards,the geometry becomes quicker and the suspension more supple, for ripping around on technical singletrack and better climbing traction.
When you move the shock upwards, it requires a higher air pressure to support the rider at sag. This is beneficial to lighter riders, allowing them to run “in the sweet spot” of the shock, and not wind up with an under pressurized shock, which feels overly harsh. Conversely, when you move the shock downwards, a heavier rider won’t need as much air pressure, increasing shock and seal durability, and keeps the damping range usable.
Rocky Mountain Proprietary Technologies: ABC Pivot Technology
Our patent pending Angular Bushing Concept™ (ABC) pivots represent a paradigm shift in high performance suspension linkage in the most literal sense. ABC™ pivots consist of an angular contact polymer bushing which rotates on a tapered alloy pivot. By carefully controlling the tolerance of these pieces, we are able to specify a torque value on the pivot and can eliminate binding, which has been, until now, impossible. The more you tighten a typical bushing system, the more the pivot will bind. Not so with ABC™ Pivots. And get this; they’re lighter, more durable, and laterally stiffer than a cartridge bearing. On Instinct, we saved 120 grams by switching to ABC™ pivots while increasing rear end pivot stiffness by 105 percent. Yes, you read that correctly; ABC™ pivots are more than twice as stiff than a sealed cartridge bearing. Plus, they need almost no maintenance – just clean the contact surfaces from time to time.
We first introduced ABC™ Pivots in 2011 on Element RSL and MSL and most of our customers are still riding the same bushings that came on their bikes. The technology has been such a success for Rocky Mountain, that it was a no-brainer to use them on2013 Instinct. The result is not only one of the stiffest and lightest trail bikes on the market, but one that also requires less maintenance.
2013 Instinct Features:
1. 142mm E-Thru Rear Axle
We put a lot of hard work into making Instinct’s frame one of the stiffest in the industry, so there was never any doubt whether to use a 142mm rear axle. Not only is it the stiffest setup possible, wheel changes are easier than ever.
2. Internal Cable Routing
A bike with such clean lines should have clean cable routing. Instinct’s internal cable routing keeps things tidy, and importantly, is very service friendly. No fishing around with a coat hanger and headlamp needed!
3. Rear Shock Remote Cable Routing
With many remote options available for the new generations of rear shocks, cable routing is an issue, but we allowed for them with clean routing.
4. ISCG-05 Chainguide Mounts
For Super-D and Enduro style riders, we spec’d ISCG-05 mounts so you need not worry about dropping your chain.
5. “Stealth” Dropper Post Routing
Tired of ripped hydraulic lines or that loop of cable bunching up when you drop your saddle? Both are a thing of the past with Instinct’s “Stealth” routing.
6. Seat Collar Sleeve
We often ride in monsoon-like conditions and it’s a shame when a super light frame fills with water. Our proprietary rubber seat collar sleeve helps keep things dry inside.
Instinct’s wide BB92 bottom bracket shell provides a stout and stiff foundation for its oversized seat tube and down tube.
8. DRD Hanger (970 only)
The Direct Mount Derailleur hanger eliminates the upper knuckle on Shimano derailleurs to improve shift accuracy and consistency
through a stiffer derailleur interface. It also improves wheel, brake rotor, and derailleur alignment when installing the rear wheel, making it the easiest dropout and hanger system on the market to use.