Banshee Rune First Impressions
Following on from the wheel size post from, er, a bit too long back…
…the Banshee Rune can be run as a 26er or 650b (27.5er). This is good news IMO, if only because it allows a frame upgrade by swapping all the bits from your 26er whilst still giving a bit of future proofing or choice depending on how you see things. To change wheel size you just fit the relevant set of dropouts. The dropout height is also adjustable to give 3 different geometries. The one I rode was in it’s 650b guise. Many forks these days do 26 & 650b with the same fork, which is great for the indecisive!
I got the chance to ride one whilst helping take groups round Dalby’s demo route for EDS Bikes. The Rune is a 160mm travel frame & was set up with a Rockshox Pike fork & Cane Creek DB Air shock at the rear. The shock had the ‘climb’ switch on it, for …climbing, but I left it open all the time & it still climbed pretty well. In fact it climbed easily as well as any 125 – 150mm frame I’ve ridden.
If you’re like me, climbing well is good, but of no use whatsoever if the thing doesn’t descend!
Happy to say it went down one of the black descents faster than I’ve ever been & it seemed happier in the air than anything else I’ve ridden 🙂
This isn’t a substitute for actual jump technique! I’m happy on the jumps, but this frame inspired extra confidence.
The Pike fork was great, although the fork model is up to you. The Cane Creek air shock performed extremely well, the back end of the bike tracked the ground as you’d want it to, although part of that has to be down to the frame design as well.
Although a Canadian brand, Banshee are apparently designed by a Scottish chap. He actually lives in Scotland as well & so the bikes have mud clearance. Yey! Another nice touch is that the bearings are deliberately standard sizes meaning you can use any quality bearings that are the correct size.
When I look at a suspension frame, I tend to look at how a bump will work on the pivot points. On some frames a hit seems to impact a bearing more than rotate it & to my mind this will wear it out quicker. The Rune looks like the bearings won’t be stressed in this way & so I would guess they’d last well. The design seems to give a nice stiff frame laterally which helps keep you pointing where you want & other bits of good design include the stays being built from a kind of rectangular figure of eight cross section to add strength whilst keeping the weight down a bit.
Not sure what the weight was but it didn’t feel heavy to lift & rode a bit lighter than it felt as well.
I always feel I should be honest & say something bad if it needs saying, but in the 4 or so demo laps I did I couldn’t find anything negative! The funnest bike I’ve ridden in a long time & I want one..!
Apologies for the lack of pics, I was riding & my GoPro hasn’t arrived yet! But here’s some video of a Banshee rider trying to break his bike…
3 thoughts on “Banshee Rune Quick Review”
Hi, I have a large and I’m 5’11” so it’s supposed to only just fit me. It has plenty of TT clearance & when I tried a medium although it was really chuckable it felt a bit short reach.
I would maybe fit an even shorter stem at some point. If I had the choice I would have a size in between the M & L size.
May i ask what frame size were you ridding ? is it in line with what Banshee recomend ?
So, if you wonder about the authenticity of reviews…
I guess I have nothing to gain from saying nice things about a bike or component, I’m not sponsored by anyone.
Anyway, I was impressed enough by this bike that I’ve acquired my own frame & forks from EDS Bikes recently.
Look out for a more in depth test at some point, but after just a few weeks I’m still impressed! The standard shock settings are pretty good, I’ve tweaked them a bit, as Cane Creek suggest you might want to, but they’re not far off standard. However, it’s worth pointing out that you can get the shock to feel pretty much however you want.
What I’m struggling to get my head around is how versatile the bike is for a 160mm frame. It flies downhill off-road but isn’t a pain to ride on tarmac. Quite pleasurable in fact…