Pang's was the first Edit v2 to hit New Zealand a couple of years ago. Now he's got a typically unique Edit v3, so we caught up with him to see how it's going in Queenstown Bike Park.
We do a lot of custom builds for, and we also sell the Edit v3 frame-only for anyone who wants to build their own. With 20 years of experience to draw on, a mind for tinkering and his own bike shop to work in, Pang has put together an Edit v3 unlike any other we've seen. He's also got an interesting perspective on how the Edit v3 compares to the v2. Read on to find out more.
Who is Pang Anyway?
Pang is one of the co-owners of Vertigo Bikes in Queenstown, NZ. That means he has the dubious privilege of being James' old boss and he's now part of the Airdrop Bikes extended family. If you're ever in Queenstown - and you really should be at some point - you'll find your way into Vertigo Bikes for sure. This is what Vertigo's website has to say about him (see below). It won't help you work out who he is at all, but it is funny and if you ever get to meet him, it'll kinda make sense.
Some say he’s more machine than man, others say he that was sent back in time to destroy the Huck Wizard, some say he was then sent back in time again and in fact IS the Huck Wizard… There’s even a rumour that he just really likes Arnie. Finding out where the legend ends and the truth starts is impossible. Now get to the chopper! However, if you’re lucky, you can meet the man himself and pick his brains on how to huck or maybe just where to get a good yoga lesson.
Years Riding: 20
Riding Background: DH racing, dirt jumping and general hucking since 18, a few years of those chasing the world cup circus around.
Goodyear Newton ST DH Ultimate 2.6 front / 2.4 rear
SRAM X01 1x11
SRAM XG-1180 10-42t
SRAM X01 1x11 Gripshift
SRAM X01 Carbon
SRAM Narrow/Wide 32t in black
SRAM GXP Team
MRP 1x ISCG 05
33lbs with no tools or water bottle
MRP Ribbon Air set to 170mm travel. I've been running this since I got my Edit v2 and have kept it for my V3. It’s a superb fork, a year and a half of issue free bliss, just regular lower servicing. No fancy colours, silly acronyms or complicated damping adjustments, just a great fork executed well, so underrated. I haven't played too much with the whole shorter crown offset thing yet so I don’t know any different, maybe something for the future.
Was recommended to run the Rockshox Super Deluxe Coil from Airdrop’s own fountain of knowledge James “thousand laps” Crossland, albeit with a softer than recommended 300lb spring. I am only 70kg and a very light rider on the bike so I can get away with a softer spring and I also like sitting deeper into the travel on the rear; it just suits the way I ride.
Firm and fast up front and soft and fast in the back. I always aim to run no compression damping, just leave the dials alone. The fork is set up 75psi in the positive and 70psi in the negative so it’s a more aggressive setup. I don’t stress about having super supple small bump performance, I just want the support to plough into steep rough sections which we have a lot of in Queenstown. I think this fork allows this sort of set up due to its pretty compliant (sorry for cliche buzz word) chassis stiffness, its not a harsh ride like a Fox 36 or other forks, it’s a real nice balance of strength and flex. Can’t recommend these forks enough.
As for rear, the Super Deluxe is fairly straight forward to set up, leave low speed wound off, set rebound to fastest and run the spring pre-load as loose as it can. Still got to put a bit more time on this shock but I would imagine I will rip it apart and change the tune at some point more specifically for me.
It's important to me to run the same cockpit on all my bikes and I haven’t changed it for years. Renthal Fatbar and odi longneck lockons. They just feel great and work so well for me. Currently on a 35mm stem too, not fussy on brand as long as it's black.
I finished my bachelor of dentistry this year so treated myself to come carbon rims, thought would try out the new Santa Cruz Reserves (yes we can supply them - Ed). I thought I was done with carbon rims but got talked into giving it another go with these as by all accounts they look bombproof and you get a lifetime warranty. So I am just going to go full YOLO with them, not care about them getting wrecked and see how they hold up. Early days but they feel great, super snappy in corners. Hands are defo getting a bit of a beating on rough stuff compared to alloy as expected but going to play with a softer spoke tension and softer tyre pressures to compensate. Or just man up. I think overall I prefer the feel of alloy rims but will see how this set up plays out.
SRAM 11 speed. Nothing to write home about, don’t need an eagle. Still on the Gripshift programme though, fecking love it.
Magura MT5s. These have spoilt me for any other brake, everything else just seems shit now, these have so much power on tap all the time they change the way you ride. Run Magura brakes on all my bikes now plus they are easy to bleed (ask James).
Flats or Clips?
Flats forever, get yourself on the Deity Tmac (we can supply Deity no problem - Ed) program if you run flats, best pedals out there.
Dropper & Saddle
I've been using the Bike Yoke Revive for the last few months, early days but super impressed so far, has the lightest action of all droppers I have used and the revive feature is pretty neat if you do start getting a bit of a pogo on. Plus the 160mm drop has been the perfect amount for me to never have to move the post in the frame. Saddle-wise my ass loves the OG SDG Bel Air saddle, have em on all my bikes.
Anything You Would Change?
Nothing at this stage, everything I am running right now is the pick of either what I like and consider the best from years of riding and owning a bike shop or stuff I want to try to be able to give honest feedback to customers. The most interesting though is I have been using the Goodyear Newton ST tyres all summer here and being a tyre snob I really throught I wasn’t going to like them but got some to try anyway. Haven’t taken them off and am on my second pair now.
Everything that is my main contact points, so my ODI Longneck Grips, my Renthal bars, my Deity TMAC pedals and the Goodyear Tyres. If these all feel good I can ride relaxed and confident.
Any Secrets or Setup Tips?
Not really, setup is such a personal thing. Although one of the best and cheapest things you can do is to buy a pot of slapper tape and go nuts, put it everywhere and then put some more on. Nothing better than a silent bike.
How Does the Edit v3 Compare To The Edit v2?
So I didn’t really know what to expect here, I kind of thought the bike would ride similarly but just have a few subtle tweaks to geo and be a more refined version of the V2. I had been keeping a close eye on the project from when info started to be released. I had some good chats with James and it sounded like they had built something pretty special here and something ultimately I was going to love to ride. I love Airdrop's company philosophy, it sits well with me, I am not someone who wants the latest crazy long plough machine to dull down the trail features and make riding boring. Give me something that is an absolute riot to ride, something I can use to turn trail features into natural doubles, rip corners to bits, make twisted shapes in the air and then pedal it back to the top with relative ease. The V2 did all those with aplomb, but man the V3 is another level of just pure fun, the rear suspension has a far more progressive feel which gives it a much livelier/playful yet composed feel over the V2. The lower BB and shorter seat tube helps with that too, you feel like you are really sitting in the bike, a feeling I love.
I haven’t been able to wipe the smile of my face since the first ride, it literally makes me feel like a kid again, just being a hooligan in the woods. The first two weeks on it I rode everyday doing everything I love to do from bike park flow laps, steep tech and 1000m plus climbs and it has lapped it all up. To sum up - good bike, goes well....get one. Well done lads.
Custom Bikes Built To Order
Pang's been in the game long time - he's got real depth of product knowledge and experience - so he knows exactly what he wants from his bike. Plus he's always trying out new stuff so he can help out Vertigo's customers. That's why Pang's build is different in many ways to the stock bikes we offer on the site. But custom builds have always been part of what we do here at Airdrop, and if you wanted a bike like Pang's we could built one for you. Or something totally different - that's the best bit.