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Jon J

Jon J

Salt Lake City

Jon J's Passions

Snow Skiing
Road Biking
Mountain Biking
Triathlon

Jon J's Bio

I grew up on Colorado's Front Range, and have now spent extended time in Wyoming and Utah as well. Salt Lakes 4K elevation is the lowest I've ever lived at.
After me knees had had enough of running competitively in college, I transitioned to XC mtn bike racing. A great cardiovascular system and lower leg strength made the transition very easy. Now a days with a family I race less, but like to get out for a ride any chance I get. I'm the Yeti Cycles brand ambassador here at Competitive, and have ridden Yeti's for 10 years now. I'm currently loving my SB95c and am happy to answer any questions regarding all things Yeti.


“FOLLOW” ME FOR REVIEWS ON CYCLING GEAR & DON'T HESITATE TO CALL FOR ALL YOUR GEAR QUESTIONS AND NEEDS AT (801-736-6396) EXT. 4378 OR EMAIL ME AT JJAKUPCAK@BACKCOUNTRY.COM


Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on April 12, 2016

BIgger. Faster. Stronger.
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I had the pleasure of spending a pre-launch weekend in Moab aboard the SB5.5. If I could have brought the bike home with me, I would have, but I'€™d also need to bring all the rocks home as well. The SB5.5 only further blurs the line of a bikes capability along the trail/all-mountain/enduro spectrum.

Full disclosure, I'm a Yeti guy, the ASR, ASR-5c, SB95c, SB5c, ASRc have all spent time in my garage, and the SB4.5c presently is tenured there.

Forget all you preconceived notions about a €"œlong travel" 29er. "€œA 160mm fork will feel too raked out and wander up climbs"€ -€“ wrong. "€œThe wheelbase will be too long and hamper maneuverability" -€“ wrong. "€œ29ers are dumb€" -€“ wrong again.

I'€m 5'€™7"€, and rode a medium SB5.5 with ease and comfort. The Switch Infinity heart of the 5.5 stays true, and will claw its way up anything as long as you keep the pedals turning. Going up the Amasa Back jeep road, and Hymasa trail, the 5.5 felt similar to my 4.5. Efficiency wasn't an issue with the additional inch of rear travel, and the 160mm Fox 36 could be pulled up steeps and step-ups with the ease of my 140mm Fox 34. Where the 5.5 separates itself from its shorter travel sibling, as it should, is once you point it downhill. It'€™d been 3 years since I'd last descended Porcupine Rim on my then ASR5c, the SB5.5 made 2013 feel like the dark ages. The Fox 36 came to life will all of its 160mm of "keep your teeth in your head"€ travel. The Infinity link feels supple and bottomless; a coworker took the 5.5 off a 6 ft drop; all he was asking for at the bottom was another bottomless token for the fork. This bikes wants the A lines, and the faster the better.

As Yeti puts it, this is a purpose built bike, and the spec follows suit. No plus-size tire shenanigans on this machine. A meaty 2.5 Minion DHF tire breaks the trail, and aesthetically brings proportion to the Boost 110 Fox 36 fork. The Float X Factory DPS shock sits in back, and will leave you asking "What happened to that rocky section?"€ A Reverb dropper is stock on all complete offerings, and all come in at less than 29lbs.

Geometrically, the SB5.5 proves form equals function. The medium frame has the same 90mm headtube length as my small 4.5 to keep things balanced, standover is lower too. The wheelbase for a medium is 1168mm, 20mm shorter than a medium SB6, and only 3mm longer than the SC Hightower that uses a 140mm fork. The 66.5 head angle keeps things stable at speed, but the paired 73.6 seat angle makes that fork feel shorter on the climbs.

If you have any other questions about the SB5.5c, or any of Yeti'™s offerings, don'€™t hesitate to give me a shout. My direct contact line is 801-736-6396 x4378, e-mail is jjakupcak@backcountry.com

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on December 21, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

My head measures 55cm, and the small was not going to happen, couldn't even get in over the crown of my head. I'm always between S and M for helmets, and based on Bells size chart, I was hoping the small may give a lower profile fit.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on December 21, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Construction on these boots is great, and the materials, closure, and design give a strong first impression.
In terms of sizing, i feel the boots run large. I've always worn a US 8 and all my cycling shoes have been a EU 41, and I've always had a pinkie finger's width of room between my toes and the front of the shoe. Lake equates a US 8 to a EU 42 in their size chart. I tried on a 40, 41, and 42, and the 41s fit best, I had on a slim sock, but there was still room if I were wearing a warmer winter sock. The 40s weren't too small, but wouldn't have had room for a thicker sock. The 42s had more room than I needed. As for width, I don't wear a an E size shoe or anything, but my feet probably lean towards the wide end of normal. These weren't narrow feeling, and I didn't feel like the wide variant would provide a better fit.

Contact me with any questions here at Competitive at 801-736-6396 x4378, or jjakupcak@backcountry.com

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on November 16, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I got to ride the SB4.5c at a dealer event this summer, and this bike flat out impresses. The 4.5 was one of the few bikes that felt effortlessly faster on the first ride than my current bike (the much loved SB66, and the Pivot Mach 6 being the others). I previously owned and loved the SB95c, and couldn't wait for Yeti to slap the Switch Infinity suspension into that frame. With the geometry carrying over similarly from the SB95, only the chainstays and rear travel have shortened. The 10mm drop in travel had me initially scratching my head, but the bottomless feel of the Switch Infinity link, and increased stiffness of the Boost fork and rear end left no lack of confidence in pointing the bike down and hanging on for the ride. At 5’7” - 140 lb, frame stiffness is rarely something I notice, much less stress, but the SB4.5c is the stiffest frame Yeti has ever made, and it noticeably holds its line through rough and off camber terrain. The chain stays are also the shortest of any bike in Yeti’s lineup (even the 27.5 SB5), and gives the 4.5c a wheelbase-defying playfulness on the trail. After riding, I was sure the wheelbase was half an inch shorter than the SB95, not a quarter inch longer. After comfortably riding a medium SB5 and ASR with short stems, I opted for the small SB4.5 frame as the smaller 29er frame gives me a more “balanced” feeling, and that again held true. Overall the SB4.5c is the well-rounded trail bike Yeti set out to make, light enough to hold its own on an XC startline, but stiff and slack enough to be able to throw line choice to the wind and put a grin on the faces of those who can hold on and stay off the brakes. Give me a call or email if I can answer any other questions about the SB4.5c: JJakupcak@backcountry.com / 801-736-6396 x4378

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on November 9, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

The Air Liner has quickly become one of my go-to chamois, putting it in company with Assos and Giordana bibs. The 10mm thick chamios provides all day comfort without the "diaper" feeling of other offerings. The bib straps help keep everything in place, and the sizing is true to form. I'm 5'7", 140lbs, and wear a small in just about every bibs (medium in Castelli), and the small Air Liners are on par. Grab a pair and put them on under your favorite baggies, or even consider these as a piece to help keep the sweat down on the trainer.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on November 9, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I got to ride the SB4.5c at a dealer event this summer, and this bike flat out impresses. The 4.5 was one of the few bikes that felt effortlessly faster on the first ride than my current bike (the much loved SB66, and the Pivot Mach 6 being the others). I previously owned and loved the SB95c, and couldn't wait for Yeti to slap the Switch Infinity suspension into that frame. With the geometry carrying over similarly from the SB95, only the chainstays and rear travel have shortened. The 10mm drop in travel had me initially scratching my head, but the bottomless feel of the Switch Infinity link, and increased stiffness of the Boost fork and rear end left no lack of confidence in pointing the bike down and hanging on for the ride. At 5’7” - 140 lb, frame stiffness is rarely something I notice, much less stress, but the SB4.5c is the stiffest frame Yeti has ever made, and it noticeably holds its line through rough and off camber terrain. The chain stays are also the shortest of any bike in Yeti’s lineup (even the 27.5 SB5), and gives the 4.5c a wheelbase-defying playfulness on the trail. After riding, I was sure the wheelbase was half an inch shorter than the SB95, not a quarter inch longer. After comfortably riding a medium SB5 and ASR with short stems, I opted for the small SB4.5 frame as the smaller 29er frame gives me a more “balanced” feeling, and that again held true. Overall the SB4.5c is the well-rounded trail bike Yeti set out to make, light enough to hold its own on an XC startline, but stiff and slack enough to be able to throw line choice to the wind and put a grin on the faces of those who can hold on and stay off the brakes. Give me a call or email if I can answer any other questions about the SB4.5c: JJakupcak@backcountry.com / 801-736-6396 x4378

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on October 5, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Coming from a 22lb Yeti ASR 29er, I was eager to check out Niner's new race offering. Thankfully they obliged, and I was able to throw a leg over the RKT 9 during a pre-release visit. The RKT 9 lives up to the name with the same responsive, power to the pedals, acceleration found int he Jet 9 RDO and credited to the CVA suspension design. Riding in the "medium" setting of the DPS rear shock was more than firm enough, and no bob under hard efforts could be detected. I flipped it to the open for the remainded of the climb, and couldn't feel any loss of efficiency, and was able to claw up loose, scree sections with ease. Pointed down, the RKT 9 was stable, responsive, and felt longer than the available 90mm of travel. As much as new wheel/axle standards can be a pain point, the Boost 110 front and 148 rear spacing were noticeably stiffer, even to a smaller 140lb rider like myself. The bike carved corners with ease and tracked through rough segments as well. I'm 5'7" and rode a small frame with a 90mm stem and felt comfortable and well balanced. I came away from the ride impressed, and would have only preferred slightly wider bars, and would probably throw a 120mm fork on the front. If you have any questions about the RKT 9, don't hesitate to call or e-mail. I can be reached directly at 801-736-6396 x4378, or jjakupcak@backcountry.com

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on September 9, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I'm a rube when it comes to GPS units, but the Cyclo 505 is easy to setup and use. Functionality is intuitive, and the ability to change the data points displayed on the head unit was easy. My favorite feature was the "surprise me" route builder. This allows you to set a time or distance, and the unit will generate 3 ride options for you, generally varying in the amount of climbing from less to more. Living in a urban area where most road rides had become standard loops, this provided a welcome change. Way-finding on the screen was clear, and the voice commands were given with ample notice. Durability wise I've had no issues. The screen is robust, but has yet to take a solid fall. Glare hasn't been an issue, nor has distortion with polarized lenses. Battery life is well indicated and seems efficient. Bluetooth and ANT+ connectivity are available, but I have yet to set those up. I was dismayed at first that the out front mount did not feature a hinge, but found the material has enough give to snap over the bar. All in all, functionality for the price is tough to beat.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on August 20, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I've used this on my mountain and road bike. I wish it had a hinge, but the material has enough give that it can snap over the bar, so you don't have to remove tape/grips to get it on. It can be run in front of the bar, or I also put it on my mountain bike "backwards", so the unit sits over the top cap of the steerer tube.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on August 5, 2015

Grips and Rips
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

My 741s weighed in at 1680g with rims strip and valves. Tough to beat ofr sub $1500 wheel set. The wide rim provides a noticable larger contact patch. My 2.2 Conti measures more like a 2.35 on the rear. I've been playing with air pressure around 20pis for a 140lb rider. A larger coworker of mine had some sidewall issues and lower air pressures, so it will vary by rider (like any wheel). Stiffness isn't an issue. If yuo have any questions, please gfeel free to contact me directly at jjakupcak@backcountry.com or 801-736-6396 x4378

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on August 5, 2015

Replace and reduce
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

When (or if) your XX1 or X01 ring wears down, drop some weight and boost the aesthetics of your ride with the X-Sync direct mount ring. It mounts directly to the arm on any X01 and XX1 crank, and some previous generation X0 cranks. If you have a BB30 crank, you'll need the 0mm offset variant, and if you have GXP cranks, the 6mm offset is the ring for you.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on July 28, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I'm a rube when it comes to GPS units, but the Cyclo 505 is easy to setup and use. Functionality is intuitive, and the ability to change the data points displayed on the head unit was easy. My favorite feature was the "surprise me" route builder. This allows you to set a time or distance, and the unit will generate 3 ride options for you, generally varying in the amount of climbing from less to more. Living in a urban area where most road rides had become standard loops, this provided a welcome change. Way-finding on the screen was clear, and the voice commands were given with ample notice. Durability wise I've had no issues. The screen is robust, but has yet to take a solid fall. Glare hasn't been an issue, nor has distortion with polarized lenses. Battery life is well indicated and seems efficient. Bluetooth and ANT+ connectivity are available, but I have yet to set those up. I was dismayed at first that the out front mount did not feature a hinge, but found the material has enough give to snap over the bar. All in all, functionality for the price is tough to beat.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on July 28, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These wheels are spot on for any gram counting build. The 1400g claimed weight is precise and includes the valve stems and rim tape. I've got mine on my Yeti ASR carbon. Even running a 2.4 front tire the rim allows fro a good tire profile. They spin up quick and a plenty stiff in the corners fro me. I'm 5'7, 140lbs, so I can't say I stress components to their limit, but I can feel the increased stiffness in corner over my previous alloy hoops. The black labeled DT 240 centerlock hubs are unquestioned in the industry, they spin smooth and keep the weight down. if you plan on running a wider tire front and rear, i might consider the AM version of these wheels. If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail e directly at jjakupcak@backcountry.com or 801-736-6396 x4378

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on July 28, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I have the medium cage for my 1x setup. If yuo're running a 2x, the cage length will depend on your chain wrap, and a 3x system will require the long cage. My drivetrain is a mashup of the XTR rear derailleur and chain, a SRAM X01 10-42T cassette, and a RaceFace Next SL crank. Despite being from 3 different manufacturers, everything works in harmony. The clutch on the XTR 9000 is simple to use, and keep the chain in tension and quiet. I shift, it moves, not much else you can ask of a derailleur.

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Jon J

Jon Jwrote a review of on July 28, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This stuff lasts and lasts, so long it may create bad habits. Shake well, put it on, cycle the gears, let it sit, then wipe it off. I'm not a chain whisperer, maybe it's because this stuff keeps my chain quite, so I never have to worry about it.

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