b r and I did a 40 mile 1800m climbing day yesterday Selkirk to 3B natural descent through Walkerburn, another natural descent, up Innerleithen to the top of Minch, quick trail centre descent then the southern upland way back to the 3B and another couple of natural descents then back round to Selkirk.
Some tight twisty and steep stuff, some flat out fast straight stuff and the usual drops berms etc
I've got a Titus Fireline with a 120mm x fusion slide built up with 2x10 with a 42 expander, which tips the scales at 26lbs with a hans dampf front and mountain king rear, which will be my most recent comparison.
I'm on a loan bike at the moment (long story) which has revelations in stead of the pike, but the weight difference is less than 100 grams and the full (20" frame) build with a pair of time xc6 pedals comes in at 32lbs with tubes and stock tyres - I will be going tubeless, but I wanted to go for a ride first.
First impressions are that it's a BIG frame, I wanted to stick with the 35mm stem and have long arms so decided to go with the large - it's given me the space to breathe and I like the attack position, the front wheel and bars are far enough in front of me that I can really move my weight about between the two wheels without feeling like I'm going over the bars and after riding it properly, it has been the right choice for me. There's not much room for the reverb to go any lower (approx an inch) - but standover is fine with that big kinked drop in the top tube... but when I'm riding that doesn't really matter anyway!
First off pedalling - there is very little bob from the back end and the front end stays put and goes where you point it. You will need to take a wide line in to tight switchbacks, but that's the best way to carry a bit of momentum through anyway. The back wheel tracks the ground well and provides acres of grip on steep and tech climbs and in loose dirt manages to find enough bite too.
I'm used to a slightly narrower bar (720mm vs the 760 that comes on the bike) so the first descent (2km 171m) going into the usual Yair tight narrow twisty singletrack through the trees I clipped the bars on a couple of trees and with the longer front end than I'm used to ran slightly wide through the first couple of corners, but adjusted to that quickly - use an aggressive attack position and the front end really goes where you point it and the rear wheel tracks easily over imperfections in the trail, allowing you to pump the terrain at every opportunity for more speed. The trail has a lot of the woops that you get through pine woods and then opened up into a very overgrown but fast narrow winding string of trail that has seen better days - big holes in there that are hidden by the overgrowth, but again just pointing the bike in the right direction it rolled through everything and tracked well. First descent - first KOM...
It definitely takes a bit of effort to get it up to speed - big wheels, and big heavy tyres - but once it's there it just keeps the momentum going and you can carry all that speed through terrain and corners with ease.
The last descent we did was incredibly wet and slick and despite understeering a couple of times it was very predictable and I was able to bring the front wheel back in line.
It's the first full susser that I've been able to manual - the front end pops up easily and over things.
I did have a number of pedal strikes - but that had all but sorted itself out by the end of the ride I've gotten used to being able to b*tch crank on the hardtail to help it through and over things where you can't do with the full suss once it's well into its travel.
Build - I'll need to play around with the settings on the CCDB, but so far the back end has done exactly what I wanted with minimal fuss, the Revelation is mostly excellent, though could do with a bit more ramp up - it's very plush but also very linear, so can be bottomed out quite easily on G-outs despite running 20% sag. The Avid trail brakes have ample power and superb feel.
The X01 drivetrain shifts positively, though I will miss the multiple upshifts of the XTR shifters on the other bike - will have to keep an eye on longevity, and the reverb is solid as you would expect.
The X0 hubs engage very quickly and sound great, the pacenti rims are wide, but from other's experiences they are rather ding-able so will probably need to keep a reasonable amount of pressure in the tyres to prevent rock strikes.
I managed to set several PRs on climbs and set about a dozen on descents including 3 KOMs - so it's definitely no slouch!