So last night was an interesting TFIT in a number of ways, Steve F had his new RC3 Monarch Plus resplendent on his FSR and Bob M was demoing an Orange Four Pro from Cycleworks to see how it compared with his trusty Orange 5 26er.

Steve reported all was good and groovy with the shock but Bob was slightly less than convinced about the Orange. I think it was a good looking bike but without a doubt the frame was too small for Bob (a medium) and the headset was as tight as “Yorkshireman at the shops”.

It’s also (or at least the demo one was) twitchy as bananas on the trail. As with all modern bikes it’s “all out front” but the bike did not feel stable when the speed increased when compared to our other bikes, and in particular, in my opinion, Bob’s Scout.

Now speaking of the Transition Scout – last night’s TFIT was somewhat special for me as I managed to get to Cycleworks in Haslemere before closing and I picked up my new ride – and OMG she’s a beauty!

My new Scout frame has been augmented with a Rockshox Pike 150mm at the front (to marry with the Rockshock RT3 Monarch at the back) as well as a Rockshox Reverb Stealth B1 dropper.

The rest of the kit is a direct swap over from my Transition Bandit, (Kore, XT 1×11 with Blackspire go and stop kit with Hope on Hope wheels) and although there are some definite cosmetic improvements to be made (purely for vanity reasons…) including new grips, custom headset cap, red seat clamp and stealth stickers for my Pike – but essentially she is good to go.

So I very rapidly and roughly pressured up the fork to recommend level and the shock to get roughly 30% sag (definitely need to work on this when time permits to get it right) and barreled out of the door for a pre-TFIT and then TFIT ride.

Initial impressions – well the Pike was a revelation – although 10mm more than the build kit forks you get with a Scout I think I have very much made the right decision. Comparing a 2017 Pike with my 2013 Fox Kashima 140mm is a bit like comparing Apples and Aardvarks (things have soooo moved on technology wise) I have to say that hands down the Pike wins the favourite bounce battle. It’s an awesome piece of kit and tamed Marbles with ease, particularly in conjunction with the Monarch at the back in “Giddy Up” mode.

The Reverb B1 is also a massive improvement on my old Reverb dropper. Apparently Rockshox have re-designed the internals and again, initial impressions are it’s just brilliant. Very smooth and very controllable when compared to my old Reverb and the internal routing (mandatory for a Scout frame) is superb.

I was slightly worried that putting on longer travel forks would stuff up climbing on the Scout but I have to say – not in the slightest. The Scout feels super planted heading upwards and is, as Transition say, very ready for riding up and down hills! However, it’s the down bit where all the fun begins – the Scout just simply rocks. It’s a nimble, enthusiastic, trail monster and OMG it made me feel (if not look!) good. I love it – there – I’ve said it.

So a massive thanks to Tom P@Cycleworks for all his help building up the Scout – let the pre-Les Arcs shenanigans begin!

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