The first 29er from Orange, this bike will be familiar to anyone who knows the British firm’s 26inch bikes, particularly the Five, which it is pretty much based on. This is a devastatingly fast trail destroyer for anyone more speed than air, but don’t discount its technical abilities – it will surprise you with its 26er-style ability. This is a do-it-all cross country bike.
Despite its size, that wheelbase makes lifting the front almost as easy as on a 26er, so popping over bigger roots and rocks isn't a problem, but it’s not as effortless as on the smaller bikes. Speed is the 29er’s primary talent and it soaks up the worst of it with almost unsettling ease, if you've never ridden a 29er before. But once acclimatised, the way the Gyro can attack otherwise questionable sections of roots and rocky trails is an addictive joy. And despite the gyroscopic effect of the large wheels, quick direction changes can still be accurate and feels solid, with the rear remaining planted through the faster turns and not quite out of its depth on the more technical stuff. This is a great all-day, cross country bike that could just be all the bike you’ll ever need.
FRAME AND FORKS
You’d recognise this as a bike from Orange from a mile away, with its archetypal frame geometry and single-pivot swing-arm. And you would
see it a mile away, too, with those huge 29inch wheels, for which the frame and swing-arm – essentially an Orange Five layout – has been designed to accommodate. But Orange have been careful not to lose the familiar ride dynamics of their 26" bikes, and so, although the seam-welded swing-arm is longer to accept the bigger wheel, the wheelbase isn't as extreme as you’d expect and the bike is an agile beast. More tiger than panther, but it’s still a single-minded animal, built to devour the gnarliest of trails. A butted 6061-T6 Reynolds seat tube and curved top tube mate to the seam-welded down tube to form the typically super-tough frame in traditional Orange style, with the iconic single-pivot seam-welded swing-arm The Fox shock provides 110mm of rear wheel travel, with 120mm from the Fox forks, less than on the Five, and with a steeper head angle (69.5˚) and longer chain stays (17.9in), but still a potent mix of the right numbers. Certainly, the Orange Five
, with its 150mm of front fork travel, wouldn't bat at an eyelid at some of the roughest trails, but the Gyro Pro 29er makes up for its numbers with those bigger wheels.
You get what you pay for and the Gyro Pro perfectly balances price and parts with top-notch Hope hub, bottom bracket, headset and EVO X2 brakes. Shimano XT/SLX 10-speed gearing takes care of the power, while a Hope EVO Pro2 hub mated to a Mavic TN319 wheel makes for super-efficient motion and that unmistakable Hope hub coasting soundtrack. The Fox Float 29 Performance fork is new for the 29ers and is top-spec with the usual finite control and adjustability.
This is a perfect first 29er, and if you’re moving up from an Orange 26" bike, like the Five, then you’ll transition to the Gyro well without much adaptation to your riding technique. Just be prepared for the extra speed, and don’t expect to win any races or enjoy uphill sections, but do expect to find trails you wouldn't have considered before. And expect to laugh a lot; this is a lot of fun.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Orange’s first 29 incher, in the Pro spec, is a single-minded all-trail play machine for gutsy riders with a predilection for speed but without wanting to compromise on agility and technical capability.
ORANGE GYRO PRO 29ER FRAME GEOMETRY
ORANGE GYRO PRO 29ER – FULL SPECIFICATION
- Colours: Ice White, Jet Black, Passion Red
- Sizes: M,L,XL
- Frame: Monocoque/6061-T6 OS Reynolds Custom Butted Aluminium Tube Maxle Swingarm
- Fork: Fox 32 Float 29er 120 Performance FIT QR15
- Rear Shock: Fox Evolution Series CTD
- Wheels: Hope Pro II Evo + Mavic TN319 29er
- Front Tyre: Continental Mountain King II 2.2 29er
- Rear Tyre: Continental Mountain King II 2.2 29er
- Shifters: Shimano SLX R Fire +
- Front Derailleur: Shimano SLX
- Rear Derailleur: Shimano XT Shadow + 10 sp
- Chainset: Race Face Evolve XC 10 sp
- Cassette: Shimano HG62-10
- Bottom Bracket: Race Face X Type
- Front Brake: Hope Tech Evo X2
- Rear Brake: Hope Tech Evo X2
- Brake Levers: Hope Tech Evo X2
- Saddle: SDG Falcon Orange Edition
- Seat Post: Race Face Ride XC
- Handlebars: Orange HotRod 700
- Stem: Race Face Ride XC
- Headset: Cane Creek 40.ZS49/10.EC49 Tapered Steerer