bird am9 review

If you normally ride a medium but want something a little lengthier, chances are you’ll fit nicely on the medium-long, just as I did at 5ft 8in. Thanks!

I’ll admit to being smitten by this bike, and I wasn’t really expecting to be when I first got on it. I really liked the 27.5in Aeris 145, so expected good things from the AM9, especially as my preference for bikes is those with larger wheels. The Aeris AM9, like the 145, strikes a balance between stabilty at speed and sharp handling in the tight and twisties.

The shape of the frame is where Bird really stands out though. It’s no slouch in the turns either and although not as calm through the bar as the likes of Whyte’s S-150 on really high-speed, chattery turns, still carves a mean line at pace — I’d certainly be intrigued to try the AM9 with a fork with shorter offset just as Whyte spec. The steeper seat angle puts your hips nicely over the bottom bracket, so on steep climbs it’s easy to regulate where your body weight is in relation to the wheels. And I was far from disappointed.

While it was in my garage it was without doubt my go-to bike and it’s not an empty garage either. Quite simply the fastest bike available for fast, steep and rough enduro courses. The standard fork for this build is the Yari. BIRD CONSETT IS CLOSED TO VISITORS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. The Aeris AM9 is its first ever 29er bike, following on from a line of successful 27.5 full-suspension and hardtail models. If I’d wanted faster rebound, I’d have struggled to get it much quicker.
If you’re in the market for a new enduro bike, long travel trail bike or all-mountain bike, check out our reviews of those we’ve thoroughly tried and tested. If you like to crank up a hill and then blast down again as fast as possible then I think that we’ll get along just fine.

While Bird is a direct buy brand, you can still visit both its northern or southern HQs in the UK to talk to the team and check out the bikes in person.

The big wheels help move the bike over obstacles where they can’t be avoided. In fact, I may have over indulged a little through the corners, loosening many of the spokes off in the rear wheel after a good few days in the hills and leaving it feeling a touch flexy when really pushing the bike hard. Riding since the age of 13, Technical Editor Tom has ridden hundreds of bikes over the past few years, from aero race bikes to EWS-ready enduro rigs, with a fair few others in between.

And that’s for good reason. Already have an account with us? The head angle is a slack 65.5 degrees and the chainstays are relatively long at 440mm, giving a wheelbase of 1,265mm in Large. Though a relatively small brand based out of the UK, Bird’s approach to bike design and commerce means it’s starting to get noticed abroad (and, yes … It feels like the rear suspension tune is just right on the bike — though bear in mind I was running the compression and rebound valves fully open.

Most likely found in the woods practicing his scandi-flicks.

When you just want to rattle over anything in the way, the 150mm of travel just lets you point the bike and let go of the brakes. What does “enduro” mean though? Where Bird differs here slightly is that pretty much every part on its bikes can be swapped or altered to suit your needs and budget. While I really liked the Aeris 145, I’d go so far as to say that the AM9 is a better bike. A size Large bike comes with a reach of 500mm, at the moment it could be argued that 460mm is ‘average’, so there’s no doubting that this is a long bike. While super short chainstays can make a bike feel playful and easy to wheelie, they also shift your weight towards the rear axle, meaning you have to work harder to load up the front wheel during corners.

I must admit that I was a little dubious as to how the long reach and lengthy wheelbase would translate on the trail. Introduction.

Should you be riding tight, nadgery trails, it’s easy to be precise with exactly where you want, or need the bike to go. And I’d honestly say that were I to go out tomorrow with my own credit card, the AM9 would be right towards the top of my shopping list, especially considering that I could get the whole bike for the same price as the frame of the other bike I so wish to own (the new Transition Scout Carbon…). Though a relatively small brand based out of the UK, Bird’s approach to bike design and commerce means it’s starting to get noticed abroad (and, yes international readers, you can probably buy one!).

I also developed a creak around the bottom bracket area after a few days pummelling the AM9 out in San Remo, Italy, though it was already in need of some TLC before we left the country so it was no huge surprise.

Really long chainstays provide stabilty at speed but also suck a lot of the fun out of riding and can make a bike handle like an oil tanker.

The Aeris AM9 is the enduro bike you have been waiting for.

Already have an account with us? The bike is sensitive in its early stroke, taking care of smaller trail chatter easily, yet it ramps up considerably towards the end of the stroke, so I rarely bottomed the bike out regardless of how ham-fisted my riding was.

The Aeris is Bird’s first foray into the world of long travel 29ers and it’s done one hell of a job. When you ride a Bird your body weight is perfectly distributed between the wheel axles, resulting in supreme stability and confidence.

Thankfully, any worries that the AM9 might feel a little dull or less fun due to all of that inherent stability were quickly put to rest.

The brakes were SRAM Guide RS.

Bird AM9 – Review. All Images and Text Copyright Bird Cycleworks unless otherwise stated. While some of my colleagues love a long bike, I’m not 100 percent sold on super long bikes. Overall, the AM9 offers a seriously well-rounded ride. That said, in order to get the back end of the AM9 feeling as I wanted, it did mean leaving the rebound adjuster fully open, so lighter riders might struggle getting the feel just right.

There’s a Maxle boost spaced back end and a full complement of bearings throughout the frame. When it comes to the geometry, Bird has definitely pushed things a little further than most. It’s seriously fast as well though, thanks in part to that well-centred riding position from which you can really attack the trail ahead. Bird Aeris Am9 Gx Custom Review. Sign in to manage your newsletter preferences. The AM9 comes in four different sizes, including the medium-long you see here. April 26, 2018, 10 a.m. on Bike Radar.

Nice. It’s very much a case of setting the sag and rebound damping then hitting the trail. The medium, the smallest frame on offer, sports a longer-than-normal 452mm reach, though this isn’t exactly crazy. Speed comes easy too and momentum is preserved with very little effort.

Modern enduro racing is a multi stage race where the riders are timed on the fun parts.

This has a reach of 475mm, though the seat tube stands at just 440mm, so there’s even scope to fit a longer travel dropper post should you wish. Don't miss out on MBUK – get your next 3 issues for just £5, Get the next 3 issues of the UK's number one cycling magazine for just £5, Speed comes easy to this big wheeler and while it feels stable at speed, its lively nature keeps things playful and fun when it matters, Well-balanced suspension that offers plenty of grip yet feels supportive when pushed hard; great geometry that gives confidence at speed without limiting any of the fun factor; customisable to suit your needs and budget, Had to run the rebound adjuster on the shock fully open; spoke tension in the rear wheel loosened off, but this was after many days of seriously hard riding, This is Bird’s first attempt at a long travel 29er and it’s certainly delivered one hell of a bike, We’re big fans of the RockShox Lyrik RCT3 fork. The seat angle is steep at 76 degrees. Bird certainly falls into this progressive category. This means you can easily control rear wheel traction and front wheel lift — the old maxim that slack and long bikes can’t climb is an urban myth.

It’s got the length to add that stability at speed and push the front wheel out in front of the rider, allowing you to push the front wheel confidently into corners to maximise grip.

On the hill it doesn’t take long to notice how supple and well-controlled both the fork and shock are as you start tackling more engaging sections of trail.

The bike was built with a RockShox Lyrik RCT3 fork, in 150mm guise, and SRAM’s GX Eagle 12-speed groupset.


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