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Intense 951 opinions please

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by weedkilla, Jun 12, 2012.

  1. weedkilla

    weedkilla Monkey

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    So here's the thing.......

    I can get a 951 at a reasonable price - but I've never ridden one.
    Some quick background, I'm 6' 0", I've ridden a Sunday for the last couple of years and quite like it. Its a medium and I would like a longer bike. I've fitted it with a Fox rc4 and run fairly low spring weights and I like my bikes sitting low in their travel. I'm pretty much a hack - even though I've been racing for 15 years and I like a bike that is forgiving. Fast is good too :)

    I've been internerding hard and obviously opinions are divided on the 951, particuarly the rising rate leverage ratio on the shock and the way it sits low in its travel.
    My thoughts are that I can turf the Fox rc2 that comes as standard and fit a vivid as it is a more linear shock, and one I am happy tuning if required. I would imagine a B tune would be a good place to start - but am happy for any advice.
    I also found that the 951 has very low levels of anti squat and am concerned about how it pedals.

    Obviously the 951 has been out for a while and is well past the hype stage and hopefully some of you now have some balanced opinions on the bike that you are happy to share. I'm just a sucker for a bargain and dont want to swap to a bike that is not really faster

    Thanks.
     

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  2. daisycutter

    daisycutter Turbo Monkey

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    from mtbr


    Product Description

    Initial availability in 2011. Your order holds your place in line, your card is not charged until your frame arrives and shipsTo you.This isThe newest revision ofThe proven Intense 951 frame. For 2011Theyve droppedThe "FRO" designation and gone with simply "951".Intense has incorporated many ofThe proven 951 features, but also added some specialTweaks like a lighter, hydroformed downtube and a standard Fox RC2 shock. Its made in America just like its big brother,The M9!TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS


    Review Options: Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

    Reviews 1 - 6 (6 Reviews Total)
    User Reviews

    OVERALL RATING:

    VALUE RATING:

    Submitted by Jeff shep a Weekend Warrior from Redcar England

    Date Reviewed: March 19, 2011

    Strengths: Very strong, fast in out of switch back, sweet in the air.

    Weaknesses: None :)

    Bottom Line:
    This bike is sweet, fast smooth, rails corners, and mint in the air
    Expand full review >>

    OVERALL RATING:

    VALUE RATING:

    Submitted by Mudd a Downhiller from Fallbrook, SoCal

    Date Reviewed: December 8, 2010

    Strengths: The faster you take it, the more stable and flickable it gets! Love the progressive feel of the rear suspension. The more I ride it, the better rider I become! G3 dropouts and rear travel adjustability. 83 mm BB. VPP suspension sticks to the ground like velcro. 1-1/2" headtube.

    Weaknesses: Q-factor limits your crankarm selection.

    Bottom Line:
    The 951 is the natural progression of ride rigs for someone who likes to aim at the nastiest obstacles on the DH circuit. For me, with the Hammerschmidt setup, I can go AM on this 8-1/2" travel rig and still rock the rocks, and climb to the top! For me, it's the "natural progression" coming off a Santa Cruz VP-Free/Socom and a V-10. The 951 has the best attributes of both V-10 and the Socom/VP-Free platforms.
    Expand full review >>

    OVERALL RATING:

    VALUE RATING:

    Submitted by 8664 a Downhiller from Switzerland

    Date Reviewed: October 20, 2010

    Strengths: piece of art

    Weaknesses: ----

    Bottom Line:
    this bike make me all days happy!!
    Expand full review >>

    OVERALL RATING:

    VALUE RATING:

    Submitted by stejam a Weekend Warrior from Redcar, England

    Date Reviewed: July 27, 2010

    Strengths: This bike rails corners and is so easy to handle in the air,

    Weaknesses: None yet noted

    Bottom Line:
    I feel this is the best DH bike i have ever through my leg over, the bike weighs in at 38.5 lbs
    Expand full review >>

    OVERALL RATING:

    VALUE RATING:

    Submitted by dhmacko91 a Downhiller from dublin

    Date Reviewed: November 1, 2009

    Strengths: speed, cornering, jumping

    Weaknesses: cant find any weaknesses yet...

    Bottom Line:
    overall the bike is amazing, the cornering on it is unreal. ive had the bike for in and around 3/4 months now and i cant find a problem with it! the bike is very very plush when you first sit on it, but when riding it doesnt feel as plush as you would think. the bike soaks up every bump and carrys speed very well, also the frame is abnormally light!
    great purchase could not be happier!
    Expand full review >>

    OVERALL RATING:

    VALUE RATING:

    Submitted by ekripper a Downhiller from Salt Lake City

    Date Reviewed: July 6, 2009

    Strengths: braking, cornering, stable at speed and in the rough.

    Weaknesses: need more time on bike to find any weakness.

    Bottom Line:
    Got a chance to run the 951 demo bike on my favorite local dh runs. When first sitting on the bike it felt very soft/plush in the begining of the stroke. I was a little leary of this initially. After a couple of corners though I was completely comfortable on this bike. The bike squats right down under braking allowing you to really carry more speed into the corners. It really eats up the choppy stuff at high and low speeds well. It took tight corners very well considering it was on the longest setting for the wheel base. It feels pretty lively as well. Not quite as nimble as my 303r but still very poppy and fun! By the second run I was able to carry more speed through all sections of the run than on my 303r which I've been on for a couple of months. For me, this bike just felt amazing and gave me a ton of confidence. This bike could definetly drop time on my race runs! I love my Yeti, but I ordered a 951 today as well. Fastest, most fun DH bike I've thrown a leg over!
     
  3. weedkilla

    weedkilla Monkey

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    Sorry if I didnt make myself clear - that I expected a different level of discussion/opinion on RM than 6 reviews and the only weakness noted was Q factor limiting crank choice!! From old threads it is obvious some monkeys have strong opinions on these bikes, hopefully tempered with some degree of hindsight now.
    Certainly the graphs below show some characteristics that are quite different from the dh bike norm and there might be some people onhere who are keen to discuss.


     
  4. nowlan

    nowlan Monkey

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    What type of terrain are you going to be riding?
     
  5. weedkilla

    weedkilla Monkey

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    South Australia, its either dust or mud, hardly ever in between. All hand built stuff, tends to be pretty narrow. No really "big" terrain,so you tend to focus more on how a bike handles rather than how it absorbs big stuff. Most of our tracks you think you'll be faster on a 6" travel bike - never are, but it feels a bit that way.
     
  6. Sandwich

    Sandwich Pig my fish!
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    That leverage ratio looks really good to me. I'm not as technically adept as some fellas around here, but I rather like a bike with a rising rate, and the falling rate at the start is something I would want for a bit of sag under its own weight.

    Kind of weird to me to see the anti-squirt curve drop off like that. Is that indicitive of a more round axle path, vs vertical or rearword?
     
  7. nowlan

    nowlan Monkey

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    I "Think" the 951 was Intense's way of replacing the Socom. (Which I have many years of experience riding). They have differences, but are both light, DH nimble machines. I had my socom set up with the Slacker dropouts, which if you do the research is similar to the 951 geo wise. That being said, go for it. I went from a socom to an M6 and wish I had of gone for a 951 to be honest. Everyone I know that rides them loves them.
    Go over on MTBR.com in the Intense forums and read about them, lots of good info there.
    I would go for it.

    Also you need to remeber that your going from DW link to VPP which will be different to get used to anyway, VPP is a world of its own.
     
  8. Kntr

    Kntr Turbo Monkey

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    I loved my 951. It pedaled very well. It was a real low bike and I did hit the pedals a lot, but that thing cornered like crazy. I could brake hard before corners and the tire would stay planted on the ground with no skipping. I ran a 100lb softer spring than recommended to get full travel. Im 5'9" and ran a small and it still felt pretty big compared to other smalls I've ridden. Its not quite a plow bike and not quite a playful bike. Its sort of in between. I've ridden/owned a lot of DH bikes and I loved the 951.

    Get it... you will love it.
     
  9. weedkilla

    weedkilla Monkey

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    Yeah, I get that it was designed for less than full on world cup dh -and that is where I live. The vpp thing doesn't worry me too much, I swore off vpp in the original v10, vp free days (I had a short shocked vpfree, and after a boat load of custom shock tunes it was pretty handy) but angular contact bearings and greasable links are enough to try again. The socom never appealed because of the flexy rear end - but the 951 seems a good step ahead.
     
  10. weedkilla

    weedkilla Monkey

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    Kntr, thanks for chiming in.
    Did you always run it with a hammershmidt? The anti squat curves I've seen are for a 38t chainring, and I've seen the odd comment that it pedalled poorly. On paper it would seem to me that it might be a better pedaller with a smaller chainring.
     
  11. Kntr

    Kntr Turbo Monkey

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    Yes, I always ran it with a Hammerschmidt and it pedaled fine.
     
  12. iRider

    iRider Turbo Monkey

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    I think the differences are more significant. Socom is lighter and more of an all-out superlight DH race bike, 951 is rather a privateers/weekend warriors DH race bike. 951 can be set up slacker than Socom too. Intense addressed 'problems' of the Socom (like swingarm stiffness, geometry, 83 mm BB, 150 DO, seatpost insertion depths) to make the 951.

    Is the 951 that you get new or used? Be aware of the fact that there was an updated swingarm released because some of the first production runs had problems. There is a thread somewhere on MTBR about it and how to identify new and old swingarms.

    FWIW: I only demo'd a 951 and after that decided that the 'improvements' were going in the wrong direction, so I didn't replace my Socom. If I hadn't owned a Socom I probably would have bought the 951 (tried a Shocker, Revolt, M6, old Giant Glory and Demo as well).
     
  13. SCARY

    SCARY Not long enough

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    I need more of these green square things^^
    Corners great,really lively and fun to ride,pedaled well,nice and light .Smashes rocks,ramps up really quick,cranks take a beating bb too low for having alot of rocks and boulders.
     
  14. kickstand

    kickstand Turbo Monkey

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    I have only had one run on a 951, and I am comparing it to my specialized big hit w/fox 40.

    My bike is a medium, my friends 951 is a large. The two BIGGEST improvements I noticed right away were how much better it pedaled and cornered. We have different tires, his bike is set up stiffer then mine (he's a good 15 lbs heavier and MUCH faster) but I noticed it seemed a bit more playful as well. Overall it felt a lot stiffer, my bike feels mushier. I don't know if that came from the tires, the suspension, or the bike, but it is what I noticed.

    I liked the bike and felt like if I had some set up time into it that I could really make it work for me, espescially the cornering aspect. My buddy corners like a mad man, I am wondering if the 951 has a lot to do with that now based on kntr's comments.

    I just posted in another thread that I would like to upgrade my frame and a 951 is one of the bikes I am considering.
     
  15. intensified

    intensified Monkey

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    i'm no tech dude but gotta say i love my 951. i rode a sunday prior and swapped it for the 951, both were size large. i did consider a medium 951, i am a creature of habit though. great bike, seems to pedal really well to me and gets it done.

    i like it better than the sunday, pedals only almost killed me once on this one, the sunday bit me a few times.
    i use shimano dx pedals and a boxxer on the front.
     
  16. bdamschen

    bdamschen Turbo Monkey

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    A properly setup RC4 on the 951 also feels pretty good. I love mine to death- it's one of the most fun dh bikes I've ever owned.

    In comparison to a sunday- it sits deeper in the travel and feels much more plush though rough stuff. It also feels like your center of gravity is more toward the back of the bike when riding. I have the G3 drop outs and prefer to run mine in the steepest HA setting for that reason.

    If you're looking for an all out bike to race- look at an M9. If you're looking for something a little more fun and poppy- look at the 951.
     
  17. weedkilla

    weedkilla Monkey

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    Thanks all, I really appreciate the "real world" review option, long after the "wow its super awesome and rad" has worn off. Think I may just have to finally get an intense after lusting for one since the Cairns worlds in..... I dunno, 1996.
    Even after lots of years and lots of bikes, if I cant demo something it still gives me the cold sweats to buy it!
     
  18. Zark

    Zark Hey little girl, do you want some candy?

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    I had a 951 fro for a little over a year and a half. I'm on an m9 now. The 951 had a lot of good traits and some I could do without. Cornering was its biggest plus. It is tenacious in that department, low and grippy. Pedalling was also good, but somewhat mushy. More on that in a minute. The rising rate suspension made springing off lips funner than any previous sled I've had.

    The negatives of the 951 are also what made it jump and stick so good. The rising rate suspension made the bike sit very deep in the travel, but was almost impossible to fully compress. That made for some issues on the trail, hitting big obstacles while already deep in the travel was harsh stuff. Increasing the travel made this worse. The rising rate makes for a conundrum. set the suspension to sit at the correct sag point and never get full travel or sag deep and loose some of the hop pedaling magic. Sagged past the sweet spot the 951 had more notion than I liked.

    The m9 has a much better feel overall. It still corners amazingly, pedals well and springs off the lips of jumps. But it is so much better in the rocks and big hits. The sag set correctly resulted in a balanced feel.
     
  19. SCARY

    SCARY Not long enough

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    I need more of these green square things^^
    I noticed how much less my legs hurt going from the 951 to the m9,due to the progressive suspension on our rough,rocky terrain.-(951 was still more fun,I just prefer faster)
     
  20. Kntr

    Kntr Turbo Monkey

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    I agree 100%. I use to hit my pedals all the time on my 951 because I had to run soooo much sag to use the travel. I ran about 40% and I only bottomed it out once when I came off a 10 ft drop and landed at the top of the tranny almost to flat. The bike cornered awesome and pedaled great. I had the G3 drop outs and ran it in the middle setting for awhile until the rear triangle cracked. The tire would rub in the short setting. Intense hooked me up with the newer triangle without the G3 and new bottom link. The newer bottom link made less noise and required less maintenance.
     
  21. hmcleay

    hmcleay i-track suspension

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    weedkilla,

    mate, I'm from SA too.
    the 951 has very low amounts of anti-squat, making it pretty boggy when pedalling.
    It's the kind of bike where you just want to point and shoot, and let it plough through the rough stuff.

    If you're coming off a Sunday (which pedals pretty well), you're going to notice a big difference.
    In my opinion, the Sunday is much better suited to Adelaide race tracks, rather than the 951.

    However, if you're still keen on it, at least it will give you a good understanding of the vast differences between these bikes.
    Who knows, the 951 may suit your style of riding better than the Sunday.

    Hope that helps.
    Cheers,
    Hugh