Some representative images of the packing job:
On to the assembly:
When everything is complete and nicely packaged, it’s not hard to put a bike together. I incentivized my ‘wrecking crew’ kids and they were motivated to help put the bike together. It required about an hour of assembly with the cutting of the steer tube as the only ‘involved’ part of the project.
The handlebar was already completely assembled with the controls in place and the drivetrain was in place as well. The dreaded bottom bracket was installed perfectly as it just spun ever so smoothly. It’s not hard but I consider the BB to be the heart of the bike and it has to be installed perfectly.
The spec on this $2500 carbon bike is rated A+ by mtbr. DT Wheels, Elixir CR brakes, FSA SLk bars and controls, SDG Saddle, XT Shifters and derailleurs immediately jumped out at us. I mean really? We’ve had several $7000 bikes that were not spec’d this nicely. It’s easy to say XT or XTR everything but it requires a lot of thought and depth of knowledge to put together something this good for around $1500 for the components.
As we dug in deeper, we really appreciated the attention to detail with logo’d lock on grips and CNC’d stem cap and binder bolt. And finally, we really liked the Praxxis chainrings. We’ve heard so much about this company but this is the first time we’ve seen their product. The quality of these rings and the Aerozine cranks really offers a performance advantage as they are light and they shift very, very well.
There is the Marzocchi Corsa Superleggera front shock though and we were a bit apprehensive about it as we haven’t used a good Marzocchi product in a long time. And after several rides, we still don’t like the fork. The lockout is just too finicky as it was not easy to lock and unlock the fork. And the ride was ok but not really on par with a Fox. We would have been much happier with an XFusion front shock for example that would have delivered the hassle-free performance and still meet the price point demands.
And at the end of the day, the bike weighed in at 22.5 lbs and it looked awesome. It just baffles us that this was achieved at $2500.
And finally, the ride:
This review is not so much about this bike but more about Mountain Cycle and how they conduct their operations. The 29er hardtail was not available at press time so we gave this carbon rocket a go.
We’re happy to report that this 22.5 lb performed as advertised. It shot up the hills as we were able to break some of our hillclimb records with it. The drivetrain is super efficient as this bike can climb all day long. The rear stays are comfortable too when descending or carving singletrack.
The spec is awesome so the wheels were snappy and the light Kenda SB8s just helped this bike accelerate. 1600 gram DT Swiss wheels is a pretty nice touch at this price point. The front shifting is something to note as it can shift well under power. It seems that the chainrings are so hard and nicely ramped that it will move the chain up and down the front rings without the usual flexing and searching common to front rings.
The head angle is a bit steep at 71 degrees and we just had no patience for the Marzocchi 80 mm fork. So we put on a 100 mm front fork and all was well.
In the end, we liked the bike, loved the spec and found a deep appreciation for the new Mountain Cycle brand.
MSRP: US$960 Frame | US$2000 Complete
Note: As of November 15, Mountain Cycle has dropped the price from $2500 to $2000.
Max Fork: 120mm.
Material: Full carbon monocoque front. Matte carbon finish.
Headtube: 1 1/8″ Straight – headset included.
Rear Axle: 135mm QR.
Post Clamp (included standard): 31.8mm, MC Custom Woodman Deathgrip with Ti Bolt.
Sub 22.5lbs – complete build on Medium frame
|Frame||Full carbon fibre construction, monocoque front triangle. Matt carbon.|
|Fork||Marzocchi Corsa Superleggera with remote. 1/18″. Silver|
|Headset||Cane Creek ZS22. Black|
|Stem||FSA OS-150, 100mm 6deg. Black w/carbon face plate.|
|Bar||FSA SLK Low Riser, 660 wide, 18mm rise. Carbon w/red graphics.|
|Grips||MC Speed Foam Race Grips. ‘MC Red’ ano with MC laser etch logo.|
|Shifters||Shimano XT 3×10|
|F Brake||Avid Elixer CR, 160mm. Red levers|
|R Brake||Avid Elixer CR, 160mm. Red levers|
|F Derailleur**||Shimano XT 3×10|
|R Derailleur||Shimano XT 3×10|
|Cassette||Shimano SLX 11-36T [CS-HG81-10]|
|Chain||Shimano SLX [CN-HG74]|
|Crank Set||Aerozine X-12. ‘MC Red’ano with MC laser etch logo.|
|Chainrings||Praxis hard anodized 26, 36, 42T|
|Btm Bracket||Aerozine outboard, ceramic bearings. Gold ano .|
|Seat Post||FSA XC-190 SB0, 400mm. Black|
|Seat Collar||Woodman Deathgrip SL. ‘MC Red’ Ano with laser etch logo and Ti bolt.|
|Saddle||SDG Bel-Air, Ti rails. Red/White with MC graphics|
|Wheels||DT Swiss X1600, w/DT Swiss RWS QR.|
|Tires||Kenda Small bloc 8 1.9, Kevlar bead|
|Cable housing||Jagwire, Kevlar braid|
|Cable ends||Jagwire, sealed.|