Sunday 10th May 2009.
Trail: Epic Hash Batang Kali
Machine: Banshee Pyre
Fork: Epicon RLD 100mm
FD: XT 09 top clamp
Crank: Race Face Ride DH
Pedal: Crankbrother Smarty
Wheelset: American Classic Mtb 26
Tyre: Panaracer FireXC pro 2.1 front and rear
Brakes: Avid Elixir CR
Headset: FSA Orbit
Stem: Truvativ 90mm
Handlebar: Bontranger X
Grips: Lizard Skin
This is my comment on riding Pyre Banshee, base on what I know and feel. I have no understanding in the engineering of a bicycle so my opinion is just base on my feelings.
The trail was 55kM, the first 20 KM was an easy trail. Most of it is flat with some small climbing. I notice that there in no pedal bob during the ride, even if i turn off the propedal function. This certainly make the trail feels like I am gliding on it. VF4B sure work well on flat terrain, responsive during a sudden sprint and sprinting away with the bike is not a problem at all. Nice!!
I try turning on both setting Propedal on and off while taking a hard corner. Using minimum braking power I can feel the bikes taking the corner without a problem. There is no flex, the swing arm is very rigid but it swallow all the bumps with an ease. Try a hard a corner with maximum braking power and swoosh the tail to make a turn. Again the bike handle it smoothly and respond very well to rider and trail condition. Good boy!!
There are lots of climbing for me to test the bike too. As you can see, my bikes is using a 100mm fork and reverse stem setting. So my bike look a bit lowered. For a long smooth climbs the bike is good and doing well.For technical climbs, since the rear arm is so rigid but active the technical part is a lot easier. Each time the rear hit a bump or obstacle the VF4B system brings the arm up and forward. What I am trying to say is, the bike actually pull it's rear arm by itself as we go on a bump. That actually have a different effect on my riding, making it much easier. Smiling Happily!!
River crossing, mean I have to carry my bike on my back. Since the frame of Pyre is much more solid and tough.Plus the VF4B system the bike is actually a bit heavy. Crossing the strong current river with the Pyre on my back...ughhhh...I am grinning here!!
Downhill is the most preferred part of cycling for everyone, Same goes to me. There is a steep downhill section in our ride today, a good place for a test. Without even stopping to check the downhill part I just bluntly go down. Again Pyre live up to its name. Handling is not a problem, easily clear the section in less than 2 minutes. Laughing like mad people!!
Overall the Banshee Pyre is a good bike, the VF4B work. Would i recommend this bike to my friend? Ooooo yes, yeah baby yeahh!! The bike was design to take all the things that can be thrown by XC to All Mountain rider...