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XTS Moto ride report (no pics, sorry!)

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XTS Moto ride report (no pics, sorry!)

Old 11-20-08, 01:21 PM
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XTS Moto ride report (no pics, sorry!)

Well, itís been together for more than a week and, since I canít seem to get out on weekends, I took advantage of the sunny skies and temps in the mid- to upper-40s and took the Moto for an extended spin on Beacon hill yesterday afternoon.

This was not a gravity day on Beacon - - this was going to be all ups and downs (with a lot of up) to get the feel of this Ďnewí bike.

First off, let me say that I was very pleasantly surprised that it does not behave like a 40 lb. bike; it feels more like a mid-30-pounder (which was what Iíd hoped the build would be). Itís not going to win any cross-country races for sure (although it will get entered, believe me ); but that was not the point of my building it. When the climbing gets real steep, I have my butt planted on the saddle, pedaling in circles and grinding along in granny - - but it keeps going up. I just have to be very cognizant of seating position and pedal smoothly to keep the front end on the ground.

That said, I climbed a tight switchback section out of a gully and cleaned it as well as Iíve done on my hardtail, I believe. Even with the slack head angle. But then, maybe Iím just used to horsing sleds around tight corners.

And when it gets pointed down hill, it just eats up trail; and it BEGS to pop and drop off anything and everything it encounters. I can purposely pick the straight lines between corners - - donít have to wiggle the bars or the bod to chicane the smooth path. Just plow that rock . . . or pop it . . . or ignore it. The bike doesnít care, it just motors through. On the flat sections, once again, it belied its hefty build and accelerated respectably and, with a geometry more to my tastes, let me attack corners harder so that I at least felt like I was riding sections faster than on an XC bike.

It was a pure joy to ride. It had me grinning bigger and more often than I had been on just a trail ride than I had in a long time. The XTS Moto was billed in its day as a freeride/light downhill machine - - a task which, quite frankly, it was not really up to. But slap a long-travel single-crown fork on and a pair of High Rollers and it has found its new calling: a total kick-in-the-pants long-travel adventure/trail/fun bike.

Speaking of the fork: it is the new í09 RST Storm Super. Iíd had zero experience with this fork until yesterday. Parking lot squish test gave me concern that it might be on the soft side; but out on the trail it behaved just fine. Dust lines on the stanchions indicated that Iíd approached its 7 inches of travel at least once; but I never had any indication of harshness or bottoming. And it didnít feel mushy on the climbs where I got into the bottom of the middle ring and just stood up and hammered to the top. Iíll take the trade-off of 6 lbs. of fork for keeping proper frame geometry and for the plushness and rigidity.

All in all, I was real pleased with the bike. Next foray out to Beacon with be with the full face just to see how its manners are on the downhill runs. Just have to figure out that magic length I can cut the seatpost to so that I have a good range of full-extension to slightly slammed. I may not ever be the first one to the top of the mountain on it but Iíll bet that Iíll squeeze a bit more fun out of every ride than most of the group I ride with.
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Old 11-20-08, 02:11 PM
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Sounds like it's just what you were shooting for. Glad it came together so well!
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Old 11-20-08, 02:31 PM
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You made me do it.

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Old 11-20-08, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by never View Post
You made me do it.

Tru dat!
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Old 11-21-08, 04:06 AM
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Nice post,enjoyed the read. Sounds like you did well with the build.
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