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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife's bullit is getting pretty beat up and it is time for a new bike for her likely next spring. Over the last coupe seasons the weight of her bullit has crept up over 40lbs and it is deffinately a bit too heavy for her. We ride a lot of intense DH...Whistler a couple times a year, Mt7 in Golden BC (home of the Psychosis DH race and a ton of insanely steep terrian) bike parks at Fernie, Panorama and Silverstar etc. While watching her ride lately it has become clear to me that her Bullit is too big for her to handle easily. She isn't that small (5'6") but I always though a medium was too big for her but she was convinced a small would be too small...but she now agrees that her bike is awkward for her.

I bought a VP-Free this year and am still blown away with it's performance. Problem is I think even the small Free would be too big for her. I'm thinking a small Nomad would be a great fit and would work well for our riding if used with a 7' dual crown. Anyone here ridden a Free and a Nomad for DH? She rides aggressively and loves really steep terrain. She does smaller drops (4 feet max). I would really like to keep the overall weight to around 35lbs with a ligth dual crown and 2.5" folding tires.

How do you Nomad riders feel about the bike for this type of use?
 

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noMAD man
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It sounds like it could work well for her. I think your overall weight might go up a little more than 35lbs., however. The reason would be wheels and tires mainly, and the fork would up it a bit more too...and all of this would depend on the rear shock selection. My large Nomad weighs 33.4lbs. with CrossMax XL wheels, reasonably light tires, and a 5.5lb. fork. For your wife's use, a slightly beefier wheelset may be in order, and for sure the dual crown 7" fork is going to be at least a pound heavier...probably more. You may be surprised to find that a Bullit and Nomad are about the same weight...I have both bikes. The Nomad would pedal way better and has a better overall geometry than the Bullit IMO. I think she would experience a noticeable performance increase even if the weight didn't drop dramatically.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Even if I can't get it much lighter it would help a lot to just get a smaller frame...I told her a medium was too big but once again....you know how it is. If a Nomad is as snappy feeling as my Free is compared to a Bullit it would be worth it just for that...My free weighs just as much as my old bullit but feels 5 lbs lighter when riding.

I was considering going with a Boxxer World Cup for both the light weight and the easy adjustability...I'm tired of trying to find light springs for DH forks. Next year the 888Air will be out as well but I think it would be a little too big for a 'Mad.

How does teh Nomad feel compared to a bullit squish wise? With a soft setup I assume it feels as plush as a bullit but pedals better? I really need to get her on one and see how she like sit. I need to ride one for myself as well but I'm afraid I'd get upgraditus again and want to dump the Heckler for one:D
 

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Freeriding Feline
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Gary:
Don't rule out the Free. I'm 5'7" and ride a medium frame, it's 42 pounds. Pedals amazingly. I bring it out on local trails sometimes, but it's mainly used at the bike park.
The VPP bikes feel so different than the single pivot bikes. More maintenance but I believe it's soooooo worth it.
Good luck.
Kat
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wow, 5'7" on a medium Free? I already have a Free myself so I know all about how they feel. My medium free feels as big or slightly bigger than my large bullit did and the general agreement is that the free runs one size larger than the bullits...since her medium bullit is too big for her I'm assuming a small free would be as well. I think she would benefit from a smaller bike anyway but I have no experience with the Nomads.
 

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noMAD man
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The biggest thing I notice between the Bullit and Nomad is how superior the rear reacts to successive, fast hits in rocky terrain. The Nomad can even be pedaled through some of these heinous conditions, whereas the Bullit gets quite choppy in the same situation. My Bullit and Nomad weigh almost the same with almost the same exact suspension components, so I think I have a pretty good heads-up comparison.

Yes, I certainly agree with how the VPP makes the bike pedal much lighter. Acceleration, climbing, and harsh terrain pedaling are definitely improved. Gary, have you considered using something like a 66SL for this bike? It's an excellent air fork that has extreme burliness and goes to 170mm. Seems like it would be ultra-tuneable for your wife, and I'd bet it would suit a Nomad better for aggressive riding. Just a thought for options.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks TNC that is exactly what I was looking for in a comparison with the Bullit. I am deffinately considering a 66 since I just realised that the Boxxer world cup can't be reduced to 7" and I think 8" is a bit too much.
 

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Lord of the Chainrings
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Dang, I'm envious! Wish I could get my wife to ride!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Mudd said:
Dang, I'm envious! Wish I could get my wife to ride!
It truely is a double edged sword. You have no idea how much I would love to do more guys only all out as many runs in a day as possible trips...oh well, being able to ride every weekend without any nagging is worth having to stop a wait every now and then.
 

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Yeah, my rides with the wife are a bit slower.... She's just not as throttle-happy as I am on the trails.... And it especially irritates her when I go bombing down a rocky chute yelling "NO BRAKES!" :D

But I still'd rather have a wife that shares my passion for MTB'ing.... It makes expensive upgrades so much easier to justify.
 

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Hardtail Freak
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I need a wife :)

SuperKat, you must have a long inseam to feel comfortable on a medium sized VPF. I'm 5'11 with 32" inseam and the medium VP Free is juuuuuuuuust right.

GaryM: I also agree that a 66sl or 66rc would be the best match for a Nomad. It will help keep the weight down, but is tuneable, has 7 inches of squish and is burly enough for intense dh'ing.
 

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Gary - I should be able to answer your questions.

I'm 5'7", 160 lbs, and ride a small VP Free with a Fox 40. Stunning bike for Whistler or shuttling the Shore. Weighs in about 38 lbs. For the type of riding you described, this is the bike I would have recommended. Small would be ideal for her height. However, you suggested you want to keep the weight below 35 lbs.

So in that case, she should go with the Nomad. I often ride my wife's Medium Nomad on the Shore and it rocks (she has the DHX Air, 2.35 tires, Fox 36 fork, around 30 lb XC/Freeride build). I took it to Whistler Bike Park once, and while it's not as slack and solid as the Free, it's still pretty sweet. You might want to build it up beefier than my wife's, but you won't regret it - it's a great bike. Regarding sizing, in the Nomad, you wife would probably want the Medium.

To sum up: Small VP Free would be perfect, but if weight is a concern, go with the Medium Nomad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks a lot for the response. I would likely build up the Nomad a little beefier with a 66 and 2.5 kevlar tires with a chain guide. Since it will be a DH bike only I was thinking a small would be the best fit...I'm afraid the medium will be the same size as her medium Bullit which is a little big for her. My shop has a small 'Mad they are going to build up for her to try and check out the sizing. I would love to get a Free for her because I love mine so much but we both think she would benefit from a slightly smaller shorter travel bike even in the bike parks...it would be way easier for her to throw around and preload off lips etc.
 

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That is going to be one crazy ride. I presume you'll put a DHX 5.0 instead of a DHX Air. You might consider a Ti spring if you go with a coil. Once you're in for that kind of money, it's a phenomenal upgrade (I put one on my Free). Also, don't dismiss the Medium. I have not tried the small but I have to tell you the medium fits me and my wife great and we're about the same height as your spouse - it's a much tighter cockpit than the VP Free or the Bullit. Good luck!
 
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