a Cross Country Rider
from Madrid, Spain
Date Reviewed: June 25, 2010
Strengths: smooth and fast on almost any terrain.
Weaknesses: The torsion seems to move the back brake caliper on heavy riding and needs to be reset every 80km! (a XTR direct mount has fixed this -so far only 100km)
Excellent bike but comes at a premium. Equilink works as stated and i have had no issues with it (unlike everybody else?) Will be riding it for years to come and would only change it for a Trek EVO 9.9 or better if one arrives. A very big step up from my previous rides and would recommend it for road and mountain. Easy uphill bike and smooth downhills (on and off-road).
Similar Products Used: Orbea max flow and Kona coiler
Bike Setup: fox float 32 140mm, XTR dual controls to 160 xtr back and 160 saint 4 pot front, XT crank, Mavic SLR, michelin XCR 2.0 front, Marathon extreme 2.25 rear, Hycross controltech bar, R2M magnesium grip ends, 50/50 pedals.
a Cross Country Rider
from Williamstown, South Australia
Date Reviewed: April 8, 2010
Strengths: It climbs, gets power to the ground and doesn't let "Bob" get to you once set up properly.
The slick suspension components soak up everything I ride through and the XL frame is a good fit for my lanky 90kg frame.
3 year warranty for the frame for the original owner.
Weaknesses: Ahh, where do I begin. The pivots; it's been said already and it's all true. I also had a bottom link break thanks to the afformentioned bolt through the frame breaking.
The front triangle flexes like no other. I run wide bars with bar ends, and at times it feels like the front end is not connected to the back end, especially when climbing out of the saddle. It can also be scary on some rougher faster downhill sections. This is also the source of the next fault/failure mode. My top tube cracked where the front of the seat stay meets it. I believe the flexing of the wobbly front bit where it meets the triangulated and more rigid rear section causes a focal point for the stresses caused by the flexing to work harden the tube material eventually leading to the cracking. Don't hold your breath for Felt to come to the rescue with advice or help on this one. The silence is deafening on my enquiry and request for technical advice for an effective repair. To be fair, my frame is an 07 secondhand and three years old, but some support and advice would be nice.
The steering is also a bit truck like when the forks are at full hieght. I heard they have addressed this on later models.
The only other thing is that the rear triangle is very tight on 2.4 tyres, and gets damaged when debris gets dragged through the minimal gap. 2.3" would fit better if you have/prefer to go phat.
Love riding it despite its faults. It just makes tough rides fun and suits me.
Would I get another one?
If they fix the issues mentioned and back their products and assist the owners better.... Possibly.
For the rest of you, take one for a ride and if it really suits you....? but I recommend that you do your research prior and get something a bit less fragile and better handling, even if it is a poofteenth heavier.
Similar Products Used: Raceline hardtail specked up a bit. Rigid, strong and a long top tube.
A dinosuar roady converted to a dually from a forgotten era. It had about a pound/.5kg of braise on it and looked like it was done in the back shed but it worked great and lasted for years.
Bike Setup: 07 XL Felt Virtue One frame, Fox Talas RCL 32 forks, RP23 rear shock, XTR crank/chain/cluster/derailluers, XT shifter/brakes, XTR 8"/Magura 6" callipers, Mavic UST and XT hubs with 2.4" Kenda Cortez tyres, 680mm riser Carbon FSA OS downhill bars with bar ends, 130mm Scud stem, carbon Easton post, Fizik Gobi seat. About 11.5 kg
from Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA
Date Reviewed: October 26, 2008
Strengths: Is made to climb some seriously crazy technical stuff
Weaknesses: Design flaw at the main rear pivot attachment.
Flexy front triangle compared to Cannondale bikes I own, so does not inspire confidence when descending.
The frame weight for my XL size is 6.4 lbs. so it is not too bad, but not having a lefty fork adds some extra weight.
Now to the point. The FULLY THREADED pivot bolt goes through a 2 piece welded pivot and bottom bracket housing which is welded to the main frame. It contains a left and a right side. For the pivot "hole", the right side is threaded and the left side is not. It is just a hole the size of the outer diameter of the FULLY THREADED bolt. The main frame is ALUMINUM and the bolt is made of STEEL. Can anyone guess what is going to happen? The THREADED BOLT "bites" into the ALUMINUM main frame in a matter of a few rides. After about 3 rides I noticed quite a bit of play in the rear triangle. Wedged the front wheel so it could not move and grabbed a pedal in the down position and moved it back and forth. There is a ton of play down there. I finally took it apart to see what was going on. I couldn't believe what I saw. To say the least I was highly disappointed that Felt (or any "reputable" bicycle co.) would let something like this be sold. Felt would not respond to my email and when I did talk to a sales rep, he was very nervous about the issue. When the LBS contacted his rep, he said they knew about the problem and supposedly a fix was in the works but not until 2009!?! fu@kin bullsh!t. And to top it off, I was going to have to pay for it. My dealer said that the 2008 models supposedly resolved this issue. I would have though any moron would have known better that to put out crap like this.
Well, I had to find a hard (turned out to be titanium) thin walled tube so that I could drill out the pivot hole were the bolt bit into it and put the tube in there to fix it. This is not any easy accomplishment, but it works now and there is not play after many rides. Fu@k Felt.
Okay enough venting. I made the frame into a 69er which is a 26" rear wheel and a 29" front wheel with 100mm travel G2 offset Fox. The bike I tested with the 26" front wheel and 130mm front travel rode like crap because the bike's HA is way too steep. The 29" front wheel solves this and it rides beautifully except that the front triangle is a little bit flexy for my taste. The rear triangle(now that I fixed it) is actually stiffer that my Cannondales, but the rear is not as important for handling. Downhill sections are a little scary because of the flex. It is sort of like riding 2 bikes at the same time. The front and the rear being the 2 bikes. On the technical uphill though, this thing rocks like no other I have experienced.I got a deal being that it was an '07 model, but IF the '08 is fixed then that would have been the way to go. Still would have the flexy main frame problem.
This whole experience is proof that you can't trust inexperienced riders to give you information about complex products such as full suspension mounatin bikes. People I contacted about their bikes bave me the thumbs up about the '07 frame. They are totally oblivious of the rear pivot problem because of their lack of any kind of awareness or experience. Reviews that claim this or that are a bunch of crap 90% of the time. I've been riding for almost 14 years and just won my age group for the state series in expert category. With a mechanical engineering degree and a physics degree you decide which post you should give more weight.
Bottom line: Buy another brand!
Similar Products Used: I own a Cannondale Prophet and Carbon Rush.
Bike Setup: Fox G2 100mm fork with a 29" front wheel which raises the front end about 30mm from the speced bike. It has an almost 70 degree HA and the front end has no floppy (chopper) feeling.
Bike is speced out pretty nicely and weighs about 28 lbs.
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: May 30, 2008
Strengths: Light weight, durable, supple, and stiff
Weaknesses: Lots of pivots.
There are two different types of Felt Virtue Frames in 2007, and one in 2008. This review is for the 2007 All-Mtn version, the difference being a slightly shorter top tube, slacker HA, and larger down tube than XC/Marathon version.(2008 is XC.) I purchased this frame because it does what they say it will do and that is cure all the drawbacks that keep hardtail riders off of full-suspension. First, this frame does NOT lock out. It is a fully active 5" travel full-suspension rig. The "Equilink" is the key. Except for this link the suspension design is like most available now with a double linkage, except the angles on the links are extreme. The "Equilink" ties these two linkages together in a way that completely eliminates chain input. Not kind-of, I mean COMPLETELY. With an RP23 shock in the full-open setting (no pro-pedal) it rides super smooth, and climbing is soooo easy. The harder you pedal, the harder the "Equilink" works to neutralize chain input leaving the suspension to do exactly what it should which is allow the tires to follow the trail. On steep climbs you can look down and see that the shock is working real hard, lots of movement, but it is NOT bob, it is ONLY trail input. I'll say it again, BOB IS GONE! The only time you get bob on this bike is when you leave the pro-pedal full open and spin a high cadence. This will cause the bike to bob a little due to reciprocating weight, not due to pedal-bob. This bike is a dream to ride. Super fast and way smooth. The only drawback is all those pivots need to be retorqued at regular intervals when the frame is new as the bearings will seat a little in their pockets with use. Easy to do though, because the torque specs are laser-etched on the caps. Go to a Felt dealer and try one of these bikes out. It is the unsung All-Mountain hero! Follow the instructions on the shock rocker for proper set-up and go have the ride of your life. I can tell you I'm converted. Jim Felt knew what he was doing here.
I got an XL 2010 Felt Virtue 1 frame last year as a crash replacement for an '08. I don't like the slacker Head angle. Is anyone interested in a slacker bike and want to trade an '10 for the '09 version of the bike.
The bike went from a 70° with a 130mm RS [atc 51cm] to 69° with a 120mm Fox [atc ... Read More »