Scott’s Ransom combines huge travel with impressively light weight and a fork and shock that can be firmed up to help it soar up the climbs, but its mismatched suspension can be frustrating.
The four-bar Horst-link rear-end drives a custom Fox shock, which can be tuned with volume spacers or made even more progressive at the flick of a switch.
Additionally, Scott’s TwinLoc remote lever firms up the compression damping (front and rear) on the first push and effectively restricts rear travel to 120mm.
In order to fit the Fox 36 fork with its lockout, Scott has specced the FIT4 damper, which is noticeably less supple than the GRIP2 unit available elsewhere. The Syncros wheels and finishing kit performed well enough, but Shimano’s four-pot XT brakes developed an inconsistent bite-point.
Scott Ransom 910 ride impressions
Starting with 30 percent sag, the Ransom’s rear suspension feels lazy and sluggish when pedalling. There’s considerable pedal bob and the bike squats deeply into its travel when pointed uphill. This makes the 75-degree effective seat angle feel much slacker.
Pushing the TwinLoc remote lever once helps, because the suspension becomes a little more stable under power and falls less far into its stroke when climbing. Push it again, and the suspension locks out at both ends, eliminating bob for a super-efficient sprinting set-up.
Scott’s TwinLoc system allows the fork and shock to be firmed up or locked out via a lever under the bar.
It also keeps the rear suspension higher in its travel, which steepens the climbing geometry. The fact that the fork locks out too counteracts this to some extent, because it means the front end sits higher and the fork stops absorbing bumps.
I soon disconnected the fork’s lockout cable to steepen the climbing geometry further. This made the Ransom a rapid climber, but I needed to toggle the lockout regularly as the terrain changed, to avoid that ‘mushy’ pedalling feel.
Also, I’d prefer a steeper seat angle, to get my hips over the pedals when climbing. The slack seat tube, combined with the long reach (500mm, XL) and 55mm stem, makes the distance between the saddle and grips quite long. I found this a little too stretched when seated for extended periods.
I increased the pressure in the shock little by little until I had 25 percent sag, but this raised the bottom bracket (BB) height, making cornering less predictable.
Even with this set-up, the suspension felt out of sync front to rear. Push hard into a corner or bombhole, and the shock ploughs through its travel much faster than the fork does. This makes for an unbalanced feel because the bike’s geometry changes mid-turn.
As we’ve reported with other models, Shimano’s four-pot XT brakes soon began biting at different points with each pull of the lever. Russell Burton
Point it down a rough, root-infested run, though, and the Ransom is in its element.
The rear suspension is super-active, tracking with minimal feedback and no loss of momentum. The slack head angle, short fork offset and long wheelbase make it immensely stable at speed, especially through pinball terrain.
Despite the soft suspension feel, I never bottomed out, even with the shock in its more linear setting. This encourages a gung-ho attitude to airtime.
The custom Nude shock is tuned for suppleness but feels soft, especially relative to the fork. Russell Burton
But even when descending, the suspension is far from perfect. The fork’s FIT4 damper feels harsh over high-speed hits, and on long, rough tracks the shock gets firmer and rebounds faster towards the end, making the back-end feel unsettled and high.
I measured 20 percent sag after one three-minute rocky track. All air shocks are affected by heat, but I didn’t notice this with other bikes tested recently that use piggyback shocks.
Also, the long (for an enduro bike) stem makes the steering feel disconnected. A shorter stem helped on steep, twisty tracks, but made the suspension imbalance feel worse.
With a new shock and tuned fork the Ransom could be a phenomenally fast enduro machine or bike park ripper, but it’s already an expensive bike.
Scott Ransom 910 geometry (XL)
Seat angle: 75 degrees
Head angle: 63.9 degrees
Chainstay: 17.4in / 44.2
Seat tube: 20.08in / 51cm
Top tube: 26.42in / 67.1cm
Bottom bracket height: 13.78in / 35cm
Wheelbase: 50.79in / 1,290mm
Stack: 25.24in / 64.1cm
Reach: 19.69 / 50cm