The word DEFCON refers to the defense readiness condition of the armed forces. Get it? “DEF” (defense) “CON” (conditions). There are five different levels of
DEFCON, numbered from one to five, with one being the most
urgent. A DEFCON Level 1 situation means the United States
is anticipating imminent war, which requires a maximum level
of readiness and a finger on the big red button to launch the
nuclear warheads. So, when Jamis decided to name its new
enduro rig the Defcon 1, Jamis must have been certain it was
ready for action. We brought one of these sleds to our favorite
enduro-type trails to put it to the test and see if it could really
“turn the keys” and declare war on the trails.
WHO IS IT MADE FOR?
The Defcon is an enduro bike with enough travel to handle
the gnarliest of trails. The slack geometry and plush suspension are built to ride fast and take chances on technical
terrain. It’s also built light enough to handle climbs to earn
those descents. Make no mistake; this is a high-end machine;
however, Jamis does an excellent job building value into its
bikes, so the Defcon is an excellent choice for any aspiring
enduro racer who doesn’t have an energy-drink sponsor but
still wants to stand on the podium. Oh yeah, we forgot to
mention it makes a heck of a great trailbike too.
WHAT IS IT MADE FROM?
The Defcon is an aluminum bike built with 160 millimeters of travel via the Jamis MP4 suspension design. It’s a
single-pivot design that uses a rocker and swingarm setup
to optimize the linkage and provide a supple but progressive
spring curve. That’s fancy talk for “it works on the small stuff
but doesn’t bottom out on the big hits.” The bike rides on
high-end Enduro cartridge bearings throughout, which are
designed for longevity. The Defcon sports a very modern
geometry that’s capable of handling the toughest enduro runs
or the most technical trails—short of a World Cup DH course.
The bike comes in several versions, all of which deliver great
bang for the buck on components. Our top-end Defcon 1 also
comes with a 142-millimeter rear axle, tapered head tube,
10-millimeter oversized suspension hardware and mounts for
any type of derailleur you want to ride with.
JANUARY 2017 / MOUNTAIN BIKE ACTION 49
Nuke the Trails