from Sedona, AZ
Date Reviewed: July 2, 2000
Strengths: Very agile,performs great in fast single track situations,a cross between steel and aluminum in compliancy and feel, verrry light and quick. suprisingly stable on righ trails.
Weaknesses: maybe a little flexy in sharp technical ascents
When I bought this bike I was making the switch from a fully suspended bike to a hardtail due to my increased competitiveness in racing. I had rode the trek and m2 recreationally and was not sure how I would adjust to the difference of racing a hardtail. I took the bike to the Mc dowell race in Phx and placed 2nd in a very compeptive vet class on only my 2nd time on it. It weaves and bobs around obstacles like Sugar Ray Leonard did in his prime. Be careful! The bike is so fast you can actually go so fast that hand eye coordination may not be able to keep up (dislocated shoulder and concussion: my fault,not the bike's) it is so very capable of high speed youve got to watch yourself. my race setup weighs an honest 20.7 lbs. I have ridden other bikes and dont feel this bike is as stiff as people are making it to be. Today I descended Devils Staircase for the first time as the ultimate test for bike stability and it passed the test. I am very please with this bike and am still learning the intricate little things to master this bike. I highly recommend it if you have the money and are a serious rider that bikes often. this is a bike with real potential in that in the last 3 to 4 mos. my race speeds have increased an average of 2mph since last year.
Similar Products Used: trek 8900,voodoo zobop,specialized m2
Bike Setup: race: crossmax wheelset,kenda kozmik lite rear, maxis minataur front, chris king head set,titec straight bars, SRAM 9.0 gripshifts xtr cranks brackets and derailers,white bros. ul72 front shock, titec seatpost,time atac pedals,xtr brakes
Ale x Dangel
a Cross Country Rider
from Newburyport, MA,USA
Date Reviewed: June 29, 2000
Strengths: The bike is sooooo lite ! Mine's around 20 lb.! The bike handles single track like hot butter on fresh popcorn. The bike is fast like everyone says, but not as fast as a slightly heavier aluminum frame like the Klein Attitude due to rear triangle flex (Small diameter tubing.)
Weaknesses: I was soooo surprized to see everyone saying this bike is "stiff" or harsh. I beg to differ. This bike is not like a traditional aluminum framed headbanger. I find it to be even soggy in sprinting and steep climbs. The first time I rode one it felt slow, (I used to race Klein, but have retired and enjoy the more forgiving ride of the Sobo.) It definitely can not compare to the stiffness of the Klein.
Great bike for the money if you can stand the voodoo spec'd components. Lighter does not exist, Period. Great forgiving ride, super geometry (ala Joe Murray), Handles singletrack like it was born there.
Buy this bike if you enjoy a cool ride that will reward you with lightness and quickness. Avoid it if you want raw power to the metal. Just not as stiff as everyone makes it out to be.
Bike Setup: Race Face crank, Ti BB, CrossMax, 99'Sid XC, Syncros 120/15 (shorter stems rule!!), Syncros bar, Kore Elite post, SRAM 9.0 shifters, derailleur and brake levers, XTR brakes, IRC Notos tires, Greenlite tubes, upgrading to Time atac pedals soon...
a Cross Country Rider
from Lakewood, NY
Date Reviewed: May 27, 2000
Strengths: Weight, Looks
I was fortunate enough to win this bike on the MTBR Birthday Scavenger Hunt Contest. Pretty cool Huh...
WOW... this is FAST. This is by far the fastest feeling bike I have ever ridden. Very stiff frame makes you feel that everything you do is going towards making this bike go faster.
I have only ridden it a few times, but it is very quick. Going up is amazing, and going down is much like any Alum HT. It is a jackhammer.
The fork is super plush and the mix of components are great. With a little work (and unfortunately a LOT of money) you could get the Sobo down to 20lbs.
Anyone looking for a "Top of the line" HT, look no further. You will not find a faster/lighter bike. This is a RACE bike. If you are looking for a real comfort HT look for a steel bike.
As for value, I have to give it 5 flamers as I didn't pay anything for it, and the overall rating gets 4 (-1 for the jackhammer).
Bike Setup: Exactly what you see in the picture above. Answer SX R fork, mix of LX XT.
from Meridian, Idaho
Date Reviewed: December 25, 1999
Strengths: Smooth, light climbing machine. Scandium rocks The VooDoo guys are fun to talk with,and informative.
Weaknesses: None yet, time will tell if I should have bought Ti
This bike rides great, much smoother than my SWORKS. No more bucking bronco feel when riding over the rough stuff. I like to climb more than descend, but this bike descends great and has made my rides more fun.
the light wieght and rigidity of the frame make for fast acceleration. power transfer from the pedals to the wheels seems instant. no energy lost. the harsh ride due to the stiffness of the frame a lot of people write about in my case is overcome by staying relaxed and letting the body roll with the punches in a way. i hope that made some sense.
My new Sobo arrived from California, customized with the correct length stem, upgraded 747 pedals, a budget but reliable XT/ESP package, and a SID-XC fork - all of which I had carefully picked out from their website. The result... If you like your current bike, don't ride this one! The stiff, yet comfortable Scandium frame makes this Russian beauty an incredible feather weight cross country racer. My Sobo is hovering around 22lbs now, with plenty of room to upgrade to lighter components when my budget allows. As is, it has given my legs new-found confidence on climbs. The only problem so far has been some grit getting into the stock Ahead set (although conditions were very sandy after hurricane Floyd demolished several creek-level trails where I ride). A Lizard Skinz headset protector should fix the problem.If you haven't already, go check out VooDoo's website at www.voodoo-cycles.com and build your own custom spec'd dream bike with their virtual bike builder. I'm now riding mine!
This bike is afiery but elegant XC thoroughbread. Because of it's incredible lightness and geometry, (allowing for a shorter stem and more responsive handling) the Sobo climbs effortlessly and floats over obstacles that may have actually been obstacles previously. It can be accelerated with the slightest push and begs to be threaded through tight singletrack. Out of the saddle, this bike flies. By the same token, it does take some skillful body english to dial in your climbing and desceding posture. The Sobo will probably really shine on the race course where there is a lot of undulating terrain and nothing is outrageously technical. It is, at the very least, extremely well-suited to the Bay Area haunts (e.g. Mt. Tam, Saratoga Gap, Corte Madera) but could be equally at home on slickrock or Pennsylavania singletrack. The finish work on the Sobo is superb (a la Kinesis) and the geometry is classic yet progressive (sloping, longer top tube; shorter chainstays). As a 5'11', 180 lb rider with a very long reach, the 19.5 frame is perfect and allows me a comfortable cockpit with a 120mm 0 degree stem. Enjoy!!
Similar Products Used: Specialized M4, Fisher Mt.Tam & Paragon
Bike Setup: Full XTR; RockShox SID, RealWheel X-517 CD wheels
from Oakland CA
Date Reviewed: August 31, 1999
Strengths: Light. Strong. Long top tube for those never ending climbs. No creaking from the bb. Nice welds, very clean. Geometry is nice for sigletrack.
Weaknesses: Seems to have a similar feel to aluminum. You feel every little pebble. Not for all day riding.
This is a really fast bike. It handles well on the tight technical singletrack. Voodoo seemed to have put a lot of time into this frame, the welds are perfect. If your looking for a fast short-course cross country or dual slalom bike, this may be for you. It is very light!!!!!
Weaknesses: Because of the frame's stiffness, the ride can get a little harsh
I currently ride an IF (Reynolds 853 steel) and have ridden two other steel bikes and one aluminum. Based on my collective experience riding both steel and aluminum, here's what I have to say about the VooDoo Sobo. This is an ideal frame for cross country riders. It's stiffness approaches that of aluminum frames, however, it does have just a bit more give. Its stiffness makes the bike a good climber while its light weight allows for quick accelaration. Rides: I took this bike for a ride on Kennedy Trail in Los Gatos. With almost 4 miles of pure climbing, this bike's stiffness helped me to climb efficiently. Soquel/Demonstration Forest: This trail has some of the fastest, sweetest singletrack in the area. The one thing I'll say is this bike will help you blaze through this stuff! Its slight give at the rear helped me to negotiate tight turns, while its overall stiffness allowed me to accelarate quickly out of the turns.Descents: Check your speed! The light weight and stiffness of this bike will allow you to descend fast, however, be prepared to take some of the shock. Like I said, this bike is stiff!Recommendation: If you're not too concerned about non-rotational weight, try a shockpost for a little comfort. I used this bike with both a stiff post and a USE shockpost. The shockpost balances this bike perfectly as it allowed me to pedal, while seated, over bumpy stuff.