Out of the box the Wilson was impressive to look at for the first time. The frame had a good feel too it and the weight felt centrally located. The finish on the Wilson was also notable as it was clear that Devinci prides itself in being made in house. Looking over the frame makes us sure that they have good QC workers who take pride in their work. All parts were clearly buit and made with care. A lifefime warranty on the frame helps enforce that point even further.
The lower carbon fiber guard on the Wilson is bold and covers a big area where rocks and impacts can occur on downhill bikes. Devinci also beefed up the impact guard’s mounting holes as well and we’ve had no issues with its durability. Big bearings throughout the frame as well to ensure smooth actuation. Replaceable ISCG-05 adapter plate was invented by Devinci and a nice touch to an already feature-full frameset.
Once built, it was time to saddle up and ride the Wilson. With the first runs out of the way a few positive things became apparent quickly. The Wilson has a good deal of standover so getting over the bike was easy. The rear end felt stiff and a general stiffness across the whole frame was quickly apparent. The spring on the Large frameset with an RC4 was a 325lb spring and we found that a 275lb spring provided a better feel at the rear wheel for an 180lb rider. Lighter riders will most likely need a pretty low spring rate. Sizing wise the riding position felt a bit small compared to other Large bikes we’ve rode and I’d personally peg the large aimed at riders up to roughly 6’2″. After sorting out the new bike feeling, we started to form some more concrete opinions on how the Wilson rides.
If there is one world i’d use to summarize the Wilson it would be balanced. The Wilson I felt was quite predictable in just about every situation and its general weight is centrally located giving it a peppy feel even though its not the lightest frame on the market.
Dave Weagle’s Split-Pivot suspension system was used on the Wilson and the partnership is working out quite well as the Wilson rode impressively well. The higher main pivot helps the rear suspension work well when the trail turns rocky. The Split-Pivot setup helped the rear end track well and pedal decently well to boot. The Wilson absorbed medium and big hits while still providing good traction and grip at the rear wheel. The 8.5″ of travel on the Wilson has some progressively so as you progress deeper into the travel it maintains a good position in the stroke.
There are geometry chips in the rear dropout to allow you to tweak the geometry of the bike (scroll to the bottom to see the geometry chart) to suit your style and needs. The rear end is fairly short so snapping it around or getting it whipped around felt natural. The Wilson corners and jumps with confidence. I believe that the centrally weighted frame paired with the suspension kinematics gave the bike a lot of confidence in these areas.
I could see room for changes such as a revised mud guard that allows for more coverage near the shock from mud that can get kicked up from the rear wheel. The rear nuts that hold the geometry chips in the rear can feel a bit soft. Getting adequate grip on these with a crescent wrench was hard given the shallow nut height so i’d suggest using a cone wrench if possible. The rear brake cable routing looks quite clean but I found that an extra cable tie was necessary to keep it in place and perhaps some revised routing would be beneficial here. The central part of the Wilson frame is stiff and beefy, but it doesn’t offer a ton of clearance between the crank and frame. This give you less room for heel clearance between the frame area. In addition, the rear triangle is wide on the Wilson so heel clearance can be tight.
The Wilson has got a lot going for it and I’m certain Devinci will continue to find ways to make this bike even better. They’ve added an XL size option for 2012 as well which should suit taller riders looking to get a Wilson in their stable. Devinci takes pride in building bikes and it shows in their final product. The Wilson is a curvy bike that has a sharp look to it. Devinci’s partnership with Weagle using Split Pivot paid off here as well and it shows clearly once you swing a leg over the bike.
If you’re looking to purchase a Devinci for yourself we suggest checking out a reputable dealer like Fanatik Bike in Bellingham, WA. They are an experienced dealer with a strong background in what gravity riders are looking for in a bike. They can help you out!
For Part 2 we’ll take you through some of the builds we tried on the Wilson. If you’re curious to see how a Wilson is built you can see how below in their factory.
Video: Devinci Factory – Wilson being built
Moving on to some of our build shots:
Boxxer Build Parts List:
Po1nt One Split second stem with a Truvativ Boobar
Headtube – Cane creek 40 series headset
We also got a 2012 FOX 40 and some new Michelin tires so we tried them out as well on this build.
FOX 40 / Michelin build:
non drive side
FOX Racing Shox has improved their 40 for 2012 in a variety of ways. Check out the details on the changes in our article here. The big 2.6 Michelin Wild Grip’r Descent is much like the Comp 32 Michelin used to make. Massive volume that has plenty of cushion and traction over rough terrain.
More complete build pictures can be found at the bottom of the build section.
We bolted up a Saint caliper M810 to the XTR Trail brake up front and couldn’t have been more pleased with the results. The power comes on smoother than with the current Saint lever with less aggressiveness and still has ample power when things turn hairy.
XTR Trail rear caliper with sintered pads. There is an impressive amount of power out of these new XTR trail brakes. Don’t let the XTR branding fool you into think they’re not up to the task.
The Wilson has pretty good clearance for big tires. The rear triangle is wide compared to some other companies which can be good and bad in ways as you get more clearance but also loose heel clearance the wider you go. The rear cable routing on the Wilson is clean but we found the rear brake cable needs an extra zip tie to ensure the cable stays out of harms way.
The rear lower shock eyelet is somewhat exposed to getting debris kicked up onto it if you don’t have a fender or guard to help keep this area clean.
Shimano Saint cranks keep on ticking day after day and remain some of our favorite cranks to use due to their durability, weight, and stiffness.
Straitline Components 36t race ring, LG1, Saint M810 (165mm) cranks, and Po1nt One Podium pedals. Deadly combination here that we’ve been having good success with. The Straitline ring is pretty new to the scene and so far we’ve been impressed with its hard ano finish. It still has its shine and is still looking as new, which is more than we can say for most of the current crop of anodized colored chain rings out there currently that can wear through after the first ride.
Po1nt One pedals are some of our favorite flat pedals, as they deliver in durability, grip, and profile. There’s a reason why lots of companies are coming out with similar designs to the Po1nt pedal.
XTR short cage rear shadow derailleur tucks in nicely out of harms way. The integrated cable routing exits the frame cleanly as well.
Industry Nine hubs and spokes. Tons of engagement (120points/3degrees or convertible to 60points if you don’t need the full engagement) in a lightweight package. We’ve covered the details of the Industry Nine hubs and wheel system in details before so do a quick search if you’re keen to learn more. We laced these up to some EN521 rims and so far they’ve held up well. Fabien Barel and a few others have been known to run these from time to time so we were curious to see how they’d hold up and we’ve been impressed so far. One benefit is that the profile isn’t as tall as a Mavic 721 as this is a more disc specific rim so getting dings in the rims seem to be improved given the smaller rime height.
Front Industry 9 20mm wheel with some thick DH spokes. These wheels are stiff.
The Schwalbe Muddy Mary (Vert Star compound) offers good grip in a wide variety of conditions ranging from wet to dry.
Thomson makes beautiful components and their seatposts are some of our personal favorites on builds. We topped it off with a WTB Silverado saddle that we also like to use on our downhill bikes.
Extra complete build shots
This update is Part 1 of 3.
Video – 2 Minute Drill with the Devinci Wilson
You can also watch this video on Vimeo, YouTube, or MPORA
In the video above we run through some of the key points to the 2011 Devinci Wilson. Take a look to see what the Wilson has to offer and its high points.
Our Wilson frameset came with:
Devinci Cycles changed their entire game for 2011. Brand new and redesigned bikes they took a went down an entirely new road! The 2011 lineup includes Split Pivot model bikes like the Devinci Wilson featuring Dave Weagle’s patented Split Pivot technology.
Upon first glance you may ask, What is Split-Pivot?
“SPLIT-PIVOT separates acceleration forces from braking forces in the suspension The system reduces excess suspension compression due to acceleration forces, and at the same time reduces excess compression due to braking forces.
Braking neutrality can be tuned independently of acceleration characteristics, and leverage rate curves can be tuned to meet the needs of the application.” – http://www.split-pivot.com
Split Pivot technology aside, the Wilson has changed even more from previous iterations. To quickly name a few high points it has revised geometry, big pivots and bearings, tapered headtube, tubing upgrades, downtube carbon fiber guard, low leverage suspension design, and ample stand over.
SickLines has the largest verified weight database. Be sure to check it out to see how these and other parts compare
|Manufacturer||Model||Year||Weight in grams||Pic.|
|Devinci||Large frame only||
|Devinci||Carbon fiber guard||
|Devinci||QR Seat Post Collar||
|FSA||Headset (ZS44 / ZS56)||
|FOX||RC4 10.5 x 3.5 Damper||
|FOX||325lb 3.5″ Steel Spring||
|FOX||RC4 Shock Hardware (25mmx8 & 20mmx8)||
The 2011 Wilson is made in house. You don’t see that from many manufacturers in today’s era of Taiwan and China production capabilities. Devinci’s in house Canadian factory builds these with love and it shows in the final product. Each piece on the frame we received was torqued, and ready to roll right out of the box. They even pressed in the included headset.
The Wilson packs in 8.5″ of travel out of a 10.5 x 3.5″ stroke shock. Our Large frame pictured here came with a 325lb spring as well. Sizing wise the Devinci was available in 2011 in three sizes, Small, Medium and Large. For 2012 they are offering an XL as well. Once built up and after some saddle time, we felt the 325lb spring was a bit much for an 180lb rider. Ideally this spring is more for a 200lb+ rider. We swapped the spring out and tried a 250, 275, and a 300 on the Wilson. At 180lb the 275 seemed to be the right ticket and Dave Weagle also shared with us some settings he felt worked best for 180lb riders. These settings were a good starting point for us and perhaps will prove useful to you as well.
“Here are the latest and greatest damper settings for a 275 spring:
Bottom out volume: full open
Reb: 7 out
HSC: 6 out
LSC: 12 out
If you were to try a 250 spring, I’d suggest:
Bottom out volume: full open
Reb: 8 out
HSC: 5 out
LSC: 11 out
Sizing wise, the Large Wilson felt a bit small compared to most of the other large DH bikes on the market we’ve tried out. For 2012, the Wilson will also be available in an XL option which we were glad to hear.
The Wilson features a tapered headtube (ZS44 / ZS56) . They included an FSA zero stack headset as well and had it pressed in but we took it out to snap some detailed pictures.
The beatuiful paint on the Wilson is hard to capture in a picture as there is some sparkle in the black paint as well. The decals are cleanly applied underneath a clearcost and overall we were impressed with the build quality of the Wilson.
The rear derailleur cable runs through the swingarm for a clean look.
The pivot and bearing setup on the Wilson were smooth. You can see some of the machining and detail work they’ve done inside the frame.
The bottom bracket and lower linkage are machined. The shock is actuated with this lower pull link system. Devinci invented a splined ISCG system some time ago and its a neat system. We’ll talk about hat further down however.
The shock sits offset in the frame slightly
Devinci use a beefy Carbon Fiber downtube guard on the Wilson. This guard helps deflect any rocks / debris that you might run into or kick up on the downtube. Its not uncommon to see dents here on downhill bikes and Devinci went the extra mile here. The mounts are reinforced (you can see a beam in the top bolt is welded between the tubes for additional strength).
Carbon downtube protector
Profile shot of the downtube guard.
This is the adapter plate that connects to the splined adapter on the frame. This lets you get some additional adjustability in clocking your chainguide as well as offering a replaceable option should you strip out a chainguide bolt. Neat system that i’m sure others will begin to pick up on. Additionally should some different standard come about, Devinci Wilson frames would be able to adjust by making a different adapter without significant re-tooling.
the adapter plate site on this splined interface. It is sandwitched snughly once you install the bb cup.
2 geometry positions to switch between a low and a high setting. This adjust the bottom bracket height, wheel base, chainstay, and head angle. See the geometry chart below for details.
Unscrew the big allen bolt on the end of the dropout to adjust the geometry chip. There are two brake mount holes to accommodate the two positions.
Chips can be flip-flopped for the second position
Additionally, you can swap which side the axle comes out by swapping the drive/non drive side chips. Out of the box our axle unthreaded from the driveside but we swapped it out so after this picture it unthreads from the non drive-side. These big nus we felt were a bit soft and wouldn’t mind seeing this bolt firmer.
Inside shot of the chip system. These chips are held snugly by the bolts on the outer edge so nothing moves around here when you take out the axle. A very clean setup for adjusting geometry.
Two brake bolt holes to accommodate the two geometry settings
We found that Devinci’s catalog had a more accurate geometry chart than what was printed on the website currently. You can see the details below. Some numbers will vary as you can adjust the fork height and tire selection. For 2012, an XL model will also be available. ST= seat tube, HA = Head Angle, TT = Top Tube, CS=Chainstay, WB=wheelbase, BBH=bottom bracket height, SOH = Standover height, HT = headtube length
To purchase, visit Devinci.com to find your closest dealer. Devinci has been working hard to acquire new USA dealers (and Global dealers too) so if you haven’t visited recently there are quite a number of places to get a Devinci from in the States now.
Stay tuned to learn more about the 2011 Devinci Wilson and our thoughts on it this week.