Pro bike: Steve Smith's Devinci Dixon Carbon

Downhill-lite setup for Stevie Smith

Sometimes a downhill bike isn't actually the best machine for downhill racing. Canadian racer Steve Smith (Devinci Global Racing) headed south this past spring to race at the Sea Otter Classic but given the relatively tame course, he pushed his usual Devinci Wilson Carbon aside in favor of a much lighter Dixon Carbon enduro rig.

Despite having about 60mm less travel at either end and vastly different geometry, team mechanic Nigel Reeve told BikeRadar that Smith still, "wanted it to feel as much like his downhill bike as possible."

Smith went low and slack for the Sea Otter downhill

Part of bridging that gap came from setting the Dixon Carbon enduro machine in its lower and slacker setting for a 347mm (13.7in) bottom bracket height and 67-degree head tube angle. Reeve said the suspension feel is similar as well even with just 145mm of travel out back and 160mm up front.

Reeve wouldn't go into specific details as far as the internals were concerned but stressed that friction was reduced as much as possible to make the suspension ultra-supple. However, both the RockShox Pike RCT3 fork and Monarch Plus rear shock were also set up with more progressive spring rates than stock, "so he can push it as hard as he wants but not feel like he risks going through the travel."

Steve smith (devinci global racing) competed at the sea otter classic downhill aboard this devinci dixon carbon: steve smith (devinci global racing) competed at the sea otter classic downhill aboard this devinci dixon carbon
145mm of travel out back and 160mm up front

Other SRAM goodies include a signature Steve Smith Truvativ Blackbox aluminum handlebar, Avid X0 Trail four-piston hydraulic disc brakes with Smith's name sealed beneath the clear coat on the carbon fiber lever blades and comparatively tiny 160mm stainless steel rotors, a short-cage SRAM X0 Type 2 rear derailleur, 170mm-long Truvativ X0 DH carbon fiber crankarms, and a Truvativ stem and seatpost.

Smith used a SRAM PG-1070 cassette out back as well although one that was slightly modified. Instead of the usual ten cogs, Smiths' customized cassette has just eight with a very tight 11-19T spread plus a carbon fiber spoke guard to guarantee that an errant derailleur cage won't ever ruin his run.

Other special touches include a lined upper cage on the e*thirteen LG1+ chain guide for quieter running, a special Schwalbe Nobby Nic 4-Cross rear tire with harder center rubber and softer side knobs, custom etching on the ODI Lock-On grip collars, and a number plate that's backed with several strips of thick tape to give it a little more structure and decrease noise. Reeve even uses his own zip tie setup for the derailleur housing and brake hose that's supposedly less constricting.

Total weight as pictured is 12.56kg (27.69lb).

The devinci dixon carbon uses dave weagle's split pivot suspension design: the devinci dixon carbon uses dave weagle's split pivot suspension design
The Devinci Dixon Carbon uses Dave Weagle's Split Pivot suspension design

Complete bike specifications
FrameDevinci Dixon Carbon, size Large, low bottom bracket setting
Rear shockRockShox Monarch Plus w/ custom valving
ForkRockShox Pike RCT3, 160mm travel
HeadsetCane Creek Forty, 1 1/8-to-1 1/2in tapered
StemTruvativ Holzfeller, 50mm
HandlebarsTruvativ Blackbox Steve Smith Signature, 780mm
Tape/gripsODI Ruffian Lock-On w/ custom etched collars
Front brakeAvid X0 Trail, 160mm
Rear brakeAvid X0 Trail, 160mm
Brake leversAvid X0 Trail, 160mm
Chain guidee*thirteen LG1+
Rear derailleurSRAM X0 Type 2, short cage
Shift leversSRAM X0 trigger
CassetteSRAM PG-1070, 11-19T 8-speed
ChainSRAM PC-1091R
CranksetTruvativ X0 DH, 170mm, w/ 38T e*thirteen GuideRing chainring
Bottom bracketTruvativ press-fit GXP
PedalsCrankbrothers Mallet 3
WheelsetEaston Haven 26"
Front tireSchwalbe Hans Dampf tube-type, 26x2.35in
Rear tireSchwalbe Nobby Nic 4-Cross tube-type, 26x2.25in
SaddleSDG Fly
Seat postTruvativ Stylo T30
Critical measurements
Seat tube length, c-t480mm
Tip of saddle nose to C of bars (next to stem)501mm
Saddle-to-bar drop (vertical)+40mm
Head tube length145mm
Top tube length611mm (horizontal)
Total bicycle weight12.56kg (27.69lb)
James Huang

Technical Editor, US
James started as a roadie in 1990 with his high school team but switched to dirt in 1994 and has enjoyed both ever since. Anything that comes through his hands is bound to be taken apart, and those hands still sometimes smell like fork oil even though he retired from shop life in 2007. He prefers manual over automatic, fizzy over still, and the right way over the easy way.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: Up in the Colorado high-country where the singletrack is still single, the dirt is still brown, and the aspens are in full bloom. Also, those perfect stretches of pavement where the road snakes across the mountainside like an artist's paintbrush.
  • Beer of Choice: Mexican Coke
  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA

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