Review: From desert dust to Midwest muck on the Intense ACV 27.5+ Full Suspension MTB

Intense ACV 27 plus mountain bike new 2017 sedona review-23

Intense ACV 27 plus mountain bike new 2017 sedona review-26

At this current point in mountain bike history, it’s more surprising when a company has something to show us that isn’t Plus or Plus compatible. The new option seems to be spreading quickly, mostly due to the fact that the newest generation of 29ers can be an either/or scenario.

Intense is doing things a little differently.

Rather than offer a bike that can convert back and forth between two different wheel sizes, their new ACV is focused on fat. Well, mid-fat. The ACV is built around the stock 27.5 x 2.8″ tires and has a geometry that is tuned to match. During our annual pilgrimage to the Sedona desert, we got a sneak peek at what Intense had in store for their newest model. And in what’s becoming standard practice for the company, we received an ACV of our own to review on our home trails ahead of the launch to see what makes this Plus sized bike tick…

Continue reading “Review: From desert dust to Midwest muck on the Intense ACV 27.5+ Full Suspension MTB”



At this current point in mountain bike history, it’s more surprising when a company has something to show us that isn’t Plus or Plus compatible. The new option seems to be spreading quickly, mostly due to the fact that the newest generation of 29ers can be an either/or scenario. Intense is doing things a little differently. […]

Posted in Actual Weights, Bicycles, Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike, Reviews11 Comments

Intense floats in on new ACV 27.5+ mid travel full suspension platform

Intense ACV 27 plus mountain bike new 2017 sedona review-28

Intense ACV 27 plus mountain bike new 2017 sedona review-28

Earlier this year during the launch of the new Spider 275 C, Intense said the new bike was just the tip of the iceberg. Thanks to the expiration of the VPP patent, their product line was due for an overhaul – just in time for the introduction of new technologies like Boost and Plus. It should come as no surprise then that the next installment of the JS-Tuned story is the new ACV 27.5+ mid travel full suspension bike. Named after the acronym sometimes used for hovercraft, the Air Cushioned Vehicle is a play on the additional cushion the plus tires provide.

Earlier this year we got our first look at the new bike in an environment that could use a little extra cushion – the red rocks of Sedona, AZ. The latest installment in the plus bike surge (with more to come very soon from other makes), the ACV puts an Intense spin on plus sized full suspension…

Continue reading “Intense floats in on new ACV 27.5+ mid travel full suspension platform”



Earlier this year during the launch of the new Spider 275 C, Intense said the new bike was just the tip of the iceberg. Thanks to the expiration of the VPP patent, their product line was due for an overhaul – just in time for the introduction of new technologies like Boost and Plus. It should come […]

Posted in Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike2 Comments

Review / Tour: American made Saris Freedom SuperClamp is a quality rack option for almost any bike

Saris Super clamp review factory tour usa america built made-33

Saris Freedom SuperClamp 4 bike rack review fat bike fatbike compatible (26)

Today, America celebrates its independence. Along with the constant fireworks and everything red, white, and blue, it also reminded me of the little American flag on the back of the Saris Freedom SuperClamp rack. There’s often quite a bit of talk around products that are made in the USA. It doesn’t always equate to a better product, but it certainly still means something. Just ask one of the roughly 200 employees at Saris’ Madison, WI factory. It’s not hard to see that domestic manufacturing is something that Chris and Sarah Fortune find as a source of pride. After purchasing Graber in 1989, the pair rebranded it as Saris – a combination of Sarah and Chris.

Since then Saris has acquired CycleOps, and PowerTap, bringing even more production in house. It was here in Madison that I got my first look at their impressive manufacturing facility as well as the beginnings of the Freedom SuperClamp. Before I knew it, there was a brand new rack bolted to my car and I was trying to figure out how to stuff a different 4 bike hitch rack inside my car for the long drive home. After seeing exactly how the rack was made, I had a chance to put some serious miles on the Freedom SuperClamp to see how it held up. Fortunately, being American made isn’t the only thing it has going for it…

Continue reading “Review / Tour: American made Saris Freedom SuperClamp is a quality rack option for almost any bike”



Today, America celebrates its independence. Along with the constant fireworks and everything red, white, and blue, it also reminded me of the little American flag on the back of the Saris Freedom SuperClamp rack. There’s often quite a bit of talk around products that are made in the USA. It doesn’t always equate to a better product, but […]

Posted in Clothes-Gear, Factory Tour, Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike, Reviews7 Comments

M60 Forty Plus widens the ENVE M Series of carbon wheels

Open plus mtb ENVE M60 plus carbon wheels rims-12

Open plus mtb ENVE M60 plus carbon wheels rims

The latest carbon hoop from ENVE is rolling out of shops as we speak. Not surprisingly, this time it’s an even wider version of their M60 Forty for, what else? Plus bikes. We’ve been seeing teasers of the new wheel and then finally got a chance to see it in person on both the Open One+ above and another soon-to-be-released bike from a different brand. Much like the original M60 Forty, the M60 Plus is meant for aggressive riders who still want to use a plus tire in the neighborhood of 2.8 to 3.0″.

Combined with the Open One+ build above, the new ENVE rim helps to make plus hardtail builds under 20 lbs (!) possible…

Continue reading “M60 Forty Plus widens the ENVE M Series of carbon wheels”



The latest carbon hoop from ENVE is rolling out of shops as we speak. Not surprisingly, this time it’s an even wider version of their M60 Forty for, what else? Plus bikes. We’ve been seeing teasers of the new wheel and then finally got a chance to see it in person on both the Open […]

Posted in Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike12 Comments

Framed circles around carbon fat bike wheels spinning on DT Big Ride hubs

Framed Carbon affordable carbon fiber fat bike wheels with DT Swiss Big Ride hubs

Rolling big no longer means rolling heavy, and now rolling light doesn’t mean rolling expensive. Or, at least, not too expensive. Framed has made a name for itself offering carbon and alloy bikes at very affordable prices, and now they’re rolled out this set of carbon-rimmed fat bike wheels to provide a similarly well-spec’d budget offering to wheel upgrades.

The rims are 80mm wide, are tubeless ready and (they say) ready for “any abuse you can throw at them.” Full specs, weights and pricing below…

Continue reading “Framed circles around carbon fat bike wheels spinning on DT Big Ride hubs”



Rolling big no longer means rolling heavy, and now rolling light doesn’t mean rolling expensive. Or, at least, not too expensive. Framed has made a name for itself offering carbon and alloy bikes at very affordable prices, and now they’re rolled out this set of carbon-rimmed fat bike wheels to provide a similarly well-spec’d budget offering […]

Posted in Fatbike9 Comments

Friday Roundup – Cycling Odds & Ends

Explore-MN_craft-beer-ride

Specialized-Foundation

  • Specialized partners with Stanford to understand exercise effects on cognition – With support from the Specialized Foundation, Stanford research is working to better understand how cycling and general exercise can build a better foundation for kids learning with ADHD. Ongoing research has suggested that exercise has an effect on brain function and especially the ability to understand and process learning in children with ADHD. Specialized’s own Mike Sinyard has struggled with ADHD since childhood, and discovered that his mood and ability to concentrate improved after time spent on the bike. With that in mind, last year Sinyard launched the Specialized Foundation, dedicated to funding research and cycling programs to improve the lives of children. Stanford researcher Allan Reiss, MD connected with the foundation and is expanding work on brain development and disorders that affect children, using neural imaging to identify how genetics, environment, the brain, and behavior all interact in children, and how to develop interventions to help them live to their fullest potential. Really interesting work that begs to be looked at even more…

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Specialized partners with Stanford to understand exercise effects on cognition – With support from the Specialized Foundation, Stanford research is working to better understand how cycling and general exercise can build a better foundation for kids learning with ADHD. Ongoing research has suggested that exercise has an effect on brain function and especially the ability to understand and […]

Posted in Advocacy, Fatbike, Mountain Bike, Where to RideLeave a comment

Surly Dirt Wizard grows more powerful with new 27.5 x 3.0″ size

Surly Dirt Wizard 275 x 3 plus tire  (1)
Photos c. Surly

Surly’s Dirt Wizard was one of the first plus size tires available, only it was launched in 26 x 2.75″ for their Instigator. Just about the time that Surly is rounding out their range of Dirt Wizards with a 27.5 x 3.0″ offering the rest of the industry seems suddenly interested in 26+, but that’s a story for another day. The news here is that after releasing the 29″ version of the magical tire back in 2014/15, the time has come for the much anticipated middle size to have its day.

If you’re looking for an aggressive 27.5+ tire with a weight-be-damned attitude, the newest size of the Dirt Wizard may cast a spell over you and your bike…

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Surly’s Dirt Wizard was one of the first plus size tires available, only it was launched in 26 x 2.75″ for their Instigator. Just about the time that Surly is rounding out their range of Dirt Wizards with a 27.5 x 3.0″ offering the rest of the industry seems suddenly interested in 26+, but that’s […]

Posted in Fatbike, Mountain Bike5 Comments

How much rolling resistance do fat bike tires really generate?

Bicycle-Rolling-Resistance_schwalbe-jumbo-jim_testing-rig

Bicycle-Rolling-Resistance_schwalbe-jumbo-jim_testing-rig

No one ever says “I want more rolling resistance with my new set of tires”, but it isn’t always easy to really know what you are getting into. On road bikes it seems like there are maybe two simple questions to predict rolling resistance: is the tire expensive, and is it really light? If you answer yes to both of those, you have pretty good odds of getting a fast tire. Not guaranteed, but it’s a decent start. On the mountain bike, it seems that the correlation between high cost/low weight and low rolling resistance isn’t so clear, and when you take the leap to a fat bike, that just goes out the window.

So that’s where independent testing comes in, and no one currently seems to offer a more comprehensive list of tires with a repeatable test protocol than Jarno Bierman of Bicycle Rolling Resistance in the Netherlands. His latest round of tests pits 8 fat tires against each other to see how much 4” tires are really trying to slow you down. Check out which fat tires fare the best, and even get a look at how the real difference between butyl and latex tubes and tubeless adds up…

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No one ever says “I want more rolling resistance with my new set of tires”, but it isn’t always easy to really know what you are getting into. On road bikes it seems like there are maybe two simple questions to predict rolling resistance: is the tire expensive, and is it really light? If you answer yes […]

Posted in Fatbike35 Comments

First Impressions: Riding the Pivot Switchblade in 29 and 27.5+ on Moab’s best trails

Pivot switchblade long travel 29 27 plus full suspension mountain bike-2
Pivot switchblade long travel 29 27 plus full suspension mountain bike-12
Photo c. Pivot Cycles/Lear Miller

For the launch of their newest bike, Pivot did things a bit differently. After showing up to Moab, the only information we were given on the Switchblade was that which we could detect with our own eyes. The bikes were set up to our exact specifications, pressures dialed, and pedals installed. Soon it was time for dinner so we could be up bright and early to hit the trail.

As we boarded the Whole Enchilada shuttle, we knew that the bikes we were about to ride were capable of running 27.5+ or 29″ wheels, and that they were longer travel than anything we’ve seen from Pivot with the big wheels. We also knew we were in for the quintessential Moab experience as we climbed to the highest spot currently open on the famous Porcupine Rim Trail.

It was no secret that our first ride on the Switchblade would be on 29″ wheels. We just didn’t know just how much fun the next few hours would be…

Continue reading “First Impressions: Riding the Pivot Switchblade in 29 and 27.5+ on Moab’s best trails”



For the launch of their newest bike, Pivot did things a bit differently. After showing up to Moab, the only information we were given on the Switchblade was that which we could detect with our own eyes. The bikes were set up to our exact specifications, pressures dialed, and pedals installed. Soon it was time […]

Posted in Bicycles, Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike, Reviews8 Comments