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Brian Sweat

Brian Sweat

Park City, Ut

Brian Sweat

Brian Sweatwrote a review of on July 27, 2015

It will save your noggin
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

After having a few seasons(and crashes) on the TLD D3, this year was time to swap in a new lid. After some comparison between the Fox, TLD, and Bell - I went with the Full-9. All are awesome carbon lids. All are rad, with little style differences.

I've laid down in the D3, and it's saved me. But I never took a straight head first wreck on the thing. I unfortunately got the experience of taking a serious head first spill with the Bell - full speed, cased a significant drop, and landed about 12' down straight to the forehead. My head was rung, but at that speed and height, I'm lucky it wasn't much worse.

There's something to be said about wrecking like that and walking(er limping) away. I can't say if any other helmet would've been better or worse in the situation, but Bell made me a believer of their Full-9 after this experience.

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Brian Sweat

Brian Sweatwrote a review of on June 9, 2015

First Impression: Just Send It
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Having been off a DH bike for the last few years, I knew part of me wasn't feeling right. With weight-weenies, xc lycra roadies, endurbros and stravassholes being a dime a dozen here in Park City (I even bought into this mindset for a while), I was looking for something else. When Santa Cruz debuted this bike at Mont Sainte Anne (http://www.santacruzbicycles.com/en/us/news/698) I knew that this was going to fill that void. Santa Cruz' iterations on the V10 have been some of the most anticipated in the industry, and I'll never forget the days on my V10.4(first gen carbon - 26" wheel) in Northern California. After much waiting, planning, and even a warranty on a part(I built the bike custom myself*) it was game on and it surely didn't disappoint.

Once the bike was built and suspension was set, it was time to throw this thing down a hill. The bike crushes it on everything I've thrown at it. Only having ~10 solid days on the bike, I've yet to fully push it's limits. It also needs to make it's way to a race. One of the most obvious points you notice are the big wheels. They track over roots, rocks and medium-sized animals with ease. The bike begs for you to push it a little faster, and is appropriately receptive to any input you send its way. With my current set up, it preloads and pops with exact precision. I've yet to find a flaw with how it rides that isn't user error. Thus far, the only tiny nuissance on the bike is the location of a rebound switch on the Vivid Air. With the frame design, it's a tucked down close to the rear triangle... But whatever, this thing rips.

Once I get some more time on different terrain with this bike, I'll update this review. Virgin and Green River trips are already passed due.

* My build is most comparable with this V10 version, here are my specs:
Fork: Boxxer WC
Shock: Vivid Air
Wheels: I9 Gravity
Drivetrain: X01 DH 7 Speed
Bottom Bracket: Sram GXP
Cranks: Truvativ Descendant
Chain Ring: Raceface 38T NW
Guide: MRP G3 Mega
Seatpost: Thomson
Saddle: Fizik Tundra
Stem: Easton Havoc
Grips: Peaty
Headset: Cane Creek 40 Series
Bars: Raceface Atlas
Brakes: Magura MT7 Raceline
Tires: Maxxis Minion DHF/DHR

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Brian Sweat

Brian Sweatwrote a review of on April 28, 2015

Perfect for Trail Rides
4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

They get the job done on trail rides. I'd never in my right mind trust these on a full DH track, BUT these kill it out on trail rides where some protection is better than none.

Only issue I've ran into: on long rides, where they get moist from sweat / weather, I've rubbed the skin off the back of the tendons behind my knee. Is it annoying? Yes. Does it happen often? No. I'd rather have a little wear and tear on the back of my knee, then shredded and bruised knee caps.

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Brian Sweat

Brian Sweatwrote a review of on January 29, 2015

Not quite right for the job
3 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Having lost a bike off my vehicle's roof, I switched to the hitch mounted rack. At first, the thing worked as intended. After 6 months of use, it was evident that this thing wasn't made to last.

First, the lock pin that locks the rack in position was cheaply made. The ball bearing that secures the pin in place fell out after a few short months. The plastic pin that is connected via a wire to the locking pin to make sure the pin stays on the rack is useless as well.

Second, the arm that I use most frequent started to break down. Instead of moving smoothly, it started to grind and awkwardly click into place... You would often smack the bar arm against your fork in the process. After cleaning, tightening, and problem solving nothing seemed to work.

Bottom line, it will hold your bikes up. However, at the rate the thing started deteriorating I would suggest Thule or Kuat.

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