When Robert swung by and told us he wanted a bike he could enjoy pedaling up and ripping down for full day rides, we knew it had to be the Niner RKT 9. We went with an XO1 build for precise, poppy shifts, and upgraded from stock where it would make things better.
Stop one was a pair of i9 Ultralights. Carbon wheels are awesome, but not quite worth it in our book. For what Robert said he wanted to do, the 3-degree engagement on a Torch hub was going to be a better improvement, and the better day-to-day experience of an aluminum rim would let the bike get out on the trails whenever it was time. And colored spokes are always good, clean fun.
When e came to the subject of power meters, we decided that the Race Face Cinch meter's weight, simplicity, and battery life were the end of that story. Combined with a burly, but light pair of Next R crank arms, there's not much more to ask for.
Being the dirtbag struggle up, crash down goons that we are, we spec'd a pair of 800x35.0mm Chromag BZA bars and a meaty Chromag BZA stem on there in place of the race-spec 760x31.8's. And we threw a Reverb 1X on, which Niner clearly wasn't expecting most people to do. Andrew got it done, but the effort nearly killed him. Still, despite all the burly parts we used, it still weighs 25.4 pounds! Ridiculous! Ridiculous fun!
Seeing someone's excitement when they collect a bike that is perfect for what they want to do is the biggest reason we keep showing up. And that's why we love having Niner in our repertoire: these bikes are good, clean fun.