GT Force x SRAM Build Update 1

In #95 we pieced together a GT Force with a ton of the latest SRAM and RockShox goodies and I’ve spent the last few weeks putting it through its paces. Thoughts so fars: Rad.

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The SRAM X01 Eagle AXS took a little getting used to and felt a little foreign to begin with. Shifting was ridiculously smooth and almost silent, occasionally leaving me wondering if I’d actually shifted. Shift performance was exactly the same under full load. The hardest thing to wrap my head around was hitting the button 2-3 times if you want to downshift a few gears, as opposed to one big push on a mechanical groupset.

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The RockShox Pike Ultimate is a nice improvement on the existing Pike. Mine’s equipped with the RC2 Damper giving me high & low speed compression adjustments. I’ve been running everything fairly baseline with no tokens and 30% sag. I’ve played with the LSC a little and was impressed that 1-click made a difference; I feel like on previous generations it’s taken a couple of clicks before you notice anything. The fork also sits a little higher in the travel and doesn’t plummet through the initial travel under braking in the same way previous generation Pikes have. The HSC only has 5-clicks, but each of these makes a difference and should offer up more than enough tunability to fulfil your needs.

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The Zipp 3Zero Moto wheels were without a doubt the product I was most interested in on this build and so far, I’m a fan. It’s a tough feeling to describe, being that it’s not one I’ve experienced on a mountain bike before. While it doesn’t make sense, it feels like you’re running 10psi less in your tyres without the negative characteristics of running 10psi less. The rim moves with the trail and soaks up the chatter thanks to its ability to flex laterally but when you pump something on the trail there’s no give. It’s one of those things, tough to describe but once you experience it, you get it. Durability will be the main thing I report back on here unless the rim has some freak characteristics I haven’t uncovered yet.

As far as the RockShox Reverb AXS Dropper Post and rear shock goes; the dropper does exactly what a dropper should do – drops. It’s been reliable and I imagine will only continue to be exactly that. Anything changes I’ll let you know. I’m still waiting on my final rear shock, so stay tuned…


Words: Cam Baker
Images: Cameron Mackenzie

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