Very few things can live up to the excitement of getting a new bike. Whether you are buying a complete or building it from the ground up, a new bike will have you grinning from ear to ear. In this review, our customer Daniel picks up a brand new Evil the Following MB frame to build up. Read on to see what parts he picked out for it!
The Evil Following MB is my first venture into full suspension mountain bikes and I'm amazed at the increase in capability over my hardtail! I had been pouring over reviews on the internet for months researching, reading specs, trying to decide which bike would be the best for my riding style and capability.
I looked at long travel, short travel, mid travel, 29er, 27.5, and every configuration imaginable. Ultimately I decided on a few priorities. First, I wanted something with enough travel that I wouldn't be wishing I had more. Second, I wanted something that pedaled efficiently. Third, I was looking for something different than what everyone at my local trail was riding, as in not the usual suspects from Specialized, Trek or Giant.
With that in mind, I had it narrowed down to a bike with 120mm-130mm of travel. I felt that this would be enough travel for me and not a bear on the ascents. While poking around on YouTube and several bike forums Evil immediately caught my eye. Being a boutique brand with some very unique features it definitely filled the "different" requirement. Based on the travel I was looking for I ended up deciding on the Following MB. It wasn't only the travel that swayed my decision but I also really liked the new geometry of the MB and the trunnion mounted rear shock of the newly updated model. In addition, the many reviews about the delta suspension on the Following feeling "bottomless" despite being only 120mm had me sold.
As usual, it was a pleasure ordering from Worldwide Cyclery and the special order transaction went seamlessly with great communication and quick delivery. I had my new Evil in less than 2 weeks and was ready to start building up my new ride.
For a fork, I paired my Following MB frame with a Fox Factory 34 with 120mm travel. I decided to build it up with 27.5 rims and some Maxxis plus sized (2.8) tires. I also fitted it with a 1x10 SRAM GX drivetrain pulled from another build.
After riding this setup for about a month now all I can say is this bike is amazing! The suspension feels very plush and yet I haven't felt it bottom out yet. The only tuning I've done is set the sag per Evil's recommendations 30% rear and 25% on the Fox 34 up front. With this setup, I am using about 95% of available travel in the rear and about 90% up front. This bike soaks up everything I throw at it and begs for more. Amazingly while being very plush and compliant over bumps, drops, and jumps I notice very little efficiency penalty when it's time to go uphill. There is definitely some kind of voodoo in that delta suspension! Whatever it is I love it! Aside from the suspension, the beefy carbon frame is super stiff. I feel no flex even when plowing into corners and dancing through rock gardens.
With the 27.5 wheels, the bike is super playful and I find myself popping off of every rock, root, and bump that I can find! The plus-sized tires coupled with the plush suspension offer ridiculous grip even on the slippery wet terrain I'm riding on this time of year in New England. The bike is very stable at speed and inspires confidence when cornering. I definitely feel like a much better rider on this bike than I actually am. The only negative to this setup is I am experiencing a fair amount of pedal strikes which may prompt me to try a 29er setup in the future to raise the bottom bracket height a little.
Speaking of bottom brackets, so glad this bike has a threaded one! No creaks, squeaks or any noises coming out of that sucker at all! I've had no luck with press fit BB's in the past, props to Evil for this little detail that makes a huge difference. The included FSA headset has also been flawless and silent as well.
In closing, this is definitely the most capable bike I've owned. The quality thus far is top notch and I've had zero issues. I have absolutely no reservations about not getting a bike with more travel, which was one of my biggest fears in buying a full suspension bike. If you're looking for a mid travel bike that loves to go downhill while not an anchor going back up, this is your bike!