Kestrel CSX Bike Bike 1998 or Older

Kestrel CSX Bike

User Reviews (33)

Showing 1-10 of 33  
SethMax   Racer [Sep 13, 2001]
Strength:

This bike handles perfectly. It is the most incredibly delicious singletrack-munching corner-carver out there. Frame is hideously strong. I break everything and it took me 5 years to break this.

Weakness:

Old-school geometry. If you run a suspension fork, you're hating it Chopper Boy. Personally, I like that laid-back image.

This bike is perfect. Yeah, you can whine about the goofy geometry from the days of yore, you can whine about the heavy (for a carbon) frame, you can whine about chainsuck and chippy gel-coat paint (welcome to the world of composites), but it's perfect. They retail for about forty grand but you can pick them up everywhere for change you should be able to find in your couch, I guess because nobody knows what a Kestrel is and folks are generally afraid of carpet fibre shredders. I bought mine for $400 as a quick fix for a Yeti ARC that I'd just destroyed. I had a race coming up the following weekend and I needed a ride. After the first ride, I pulled over, removed the seat from the frame and... well, never mind. Let's just say that I'd trade half of the girlfriends I've had in my life for this bike. It's awesome and if you're still holding on to the old rigid-fork thing (like I am) there isn't a better bike. I raced (and was competitive) in everything from Expert CC to Pro slaloms to gear-class BMX to Expert downhill. ON a hard tail. With a rigid fork. I had a sweet full-boinger downhill bike built at the time but usually chose to ride the Mighty Kestrel. It's that good. I eventually de-laminated the bottom bracket shell and decided that it was time to cash it in and replace the old girl with the latest greatest technology. Biggest mistake I ever made. Luckily I only paid $50 for the OCLV. That's about all it's worth. At any rate, I'm a has-been now so my riding any better equipment than the Trek is just plain insulting to the good riders out there. Five flamin' chili dogs.

Similar Products Used: Replaced it with a Trek OCLV carpet-fibre rig. It sucks out loud in comparison to the Kestrel, although it's the second best full-stiffy carbon rig out there. It's stupid-light but it handles like a soapbox derby car. Trust me.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Milky   Cross-Country Rider [Jul 21, 1999]
Strength:

Fast (very!)
Comfortable
Light

Weakness:

Geometry post SID fit
Paint Chips

Awesome.. who needs full sus when you can ride a carbon fibre machine like this?.. Blisteringly fast.
The geometry >>isThe first time I rode it, I knocked 15 mins of my PB for my local 20mile route.. and it is gonna go down further this weekend!
Everyone is right about the paint chips though, but just touch it up and who can tell right?
I'm a heavy guy but I haven't found any cause for concern over strength, it just feels strong and responsive all the time.
Pure and simple: it is sex on two wheels! :-)

Similar Products Used: Long-time Stumpie Diehard
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
John   cross-country rider [Sep 23, 1998]

This bike is a dream come true. I disagree with the last review, I weigh in at 240lbs, and hammer my bike about 60 to 70 miles a week, I haven't had a problem, ever, and have owned the frame for 3 years. I've ridden all materials, hell, I've even ridden other carbon hartails, nothing compares to this bike.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Garen Meguerian   cross-country rider [Mar 13, 1998]

One ride on this baby and you'll be asking yourself: did this bike descend from heaven? The answer, little Timmy, is a resounding Yes! The first time I climbed on this bike, it performed so well that I thought that it was equiped with an internal combustion engine. It comes to life with each pedal stroke and springs up mountains like a doe in heat. It even takes a ton of abuse on those screaming downhills; BTW I weigh between 170 and 185lbs (depending on the season). After ditching my old aluminum bike (Miyata Elev. 2000), I can't ever imagine going back. Carbon forever.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Stephen   cross-country rider [Jul 23, 1997]

After trying various frame materials and going from hardtail to dual suspension, I found that the CSX was the perfect balance. I slapped it together with a Mach V SX and XTR parts and have never been more happy. On the scale it's not as light as an OCLV, but it sure feels light when riding. The rear end takes the edge off bumps that would normally kick your ass on an aluminum hardtail. The only problem I've had is a cheap seatpost binder (I've got a made in Japan model-- Kestrel claims to have upgraded the seatpost clamp on 97 models) which resulted in broken threads and a seatpost that is held in by an OSH bolt, nut, and loctite. In addition, the paint flakes off too easily. However, the frame's performance and looks more than make up for it.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Kevin   Weekend Warrior [May 26, 2000]
Strength:

Excessively light-weight. Very rugged, resposive.

Weakness:

Price may put it out of range for some riders.

Just an update for anyone reading these posts trying to get a feel for the CSX. I posted earlier a couple of posts down. I did get rid of that Vetta seat, (ouch) and bought something softer. This bike is bringing me into the mountain biking world. It's very pleasurable to ride. I'm enjoying it quite a bit. The frame is STRONG. Don't worry about the darn thing cracking or breaking. I've fallen a number of times getting used to these clipless pedals, (ouch). I don't think I've even scratched the frame. I run the bike pretty hard and I've dropped a foot or two off of ledges while riding and no problems. The biggest factor is I tip the scales at 265 pounds and this bike can take it. I ride a 19". This bike is so fun to ride that I'm claiming a new hobby! If you're thinking about buying one...just do it. You'll be very satisfied too.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Gordie Kool   Downhiller [Apr 23, 2001]
Strength:

Very rugged. Comfortable sitting position. Downhills fast. Climbs easy.

Weakness:

Paint chips easy. Old innertube on chainstay will protect it, not to mention give it an aggressive appearance. Chainsuck, used to get it. Changed drivetrain to reduce it.

This bike is bad! (Bad meaning good- real good). It's fast, comfortable and could take some punishment. I tip in at 180+ and never had a problem. First ride, I couldn't help thinking how comfortable on downhills; where the bike seemed to be an extension of my body, screaming down technical descents. The plush way to crush is what comes to mind. Haven't noticed climbing problems based on geometry specs. Climbs are easy (of course depending on me). Downhill is orgasmic. And CSX screams for serious action. Very tough. Should come with standard rock ring.

Similar Products Used: Had crappy specialized and GT before.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Brent   Cross Country Rider [May 10, 2000]
Strength:

Light, comfortable, fast and, most importantly, FUN!

Weakness:

I put a Lizard Skin on the chain stay because the when the chain slaps it the paint chips and makes a very unnerving sound! I laid it down a couple of years ago and wound up dinging the top tube pretty good with the handlebars. Top tube now has a bit of flex in it that was not there before. Factory will repair it for a nominal charge but it hasn't bugged me that much yet.

Fast ride that has taken more abuse than I thought carbon fiber could handle. This bike has handled big hits/drops much better than Stumpjumper's and Zaskar's I've ridden with! I have been impressed with Kestrel's customer service and would recommend this bike to someone looking to upgrade from their first or second mountain bike.

Similar Products Used: I've ridden steel bikes made by Trek and Yokata (sucked!)and aluminum bikes by Specialized and Cannondale. I have not ridden any other carbon fiber bikes.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
scott tsilis   Cross Country Rider [Apr 30, 2000]
Strength:

very stiff. very light. no lateral flex.(and i'm a 190 plus rider). gorgeous looking frame. mines orange

Weakness:

paint chips easy. impossible to find and fit bottom-bracket mounted front derailler.

this bike rocks on the singletrack descents! nothing compares. climbing ok if you can keep the front tire on the ground. very solid feel. went through three shimano front deraillers before i gave up and mounted one that mounts to the seat tube. kestrel told me it wouldn't void my warranty since they run their team bikes with that derailler anyway. basuically if you like to weave down hill fast and tight then this is the bike for you. if you need help on the climbs then you should avoid this bike. it takes extra work to keep the front end down on the steep ups.

Similar Products Used: trek oclv
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Kevin   Weekend Warrior [Apr 30, 2000]
Strength:

WOW! I'm riding greased butter. So smooooth and soooo fast that I should check for a motor! Actually, since I'm not a racer/pro, it's almost too fast! Red flags!!! I ride in rolling hills, nothing extreme..but boy..what a ride.

Weakness:

Well, I'm not sure there are any glaring ones. It's a sweet ride.

I passed up a Jamis Diablo for this ride, and couldn't be happier. You wouldn't BELIEVE what I paid for this bike! It pays to shop around. I made a deal with a dealer on Ebay on got the bike delivered to my door for 1/3 the MSRP! Thats right! Oh my-oh-my..how could it get any sweeter?

Similar Products Used: What could compare?
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 33  

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