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  1. #1
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    2012 RIP 9 v. 2012 Bandit 29

    Been riding a 2012 Transition Bandit 29 since last June (140mm front, 130mm real travel version, not the 2013 120mm travel version.) Thinking about replacing it with a 2012 RIP 9. Since the RIP RDO came out, the price on the AL RIP frame has dropped a lot. Anybody spent time on both bikes? They look pretty similar in terms of weight and build options. With a 140 fork on a RIP (which I plan to run, even though my Reba effectively gets more like 135mm of max travel), the RIP will have a 1.5 degree steeper HA and 1.5 degree slacker seat angle than the Bandit, as well as a shorter wheelbase. I had a Jet 9 for a while and really enjoyed the fit and the ride (but wanted more travel, hence the Bandit.)

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    I think you are looking at more of a lateral move here, not sure it would be a significant upgrade if at all. Might see better pedaling performance with the RIP 9, but I've heard great things about the B29 as well.

  3. #3
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    My friend has an RIP9. I have a '12 Bandit 29. My bike is way, way more fun. That is purely my opinion and I have nothing scientific to qualify that statement with.

    They are both great bikes but I think all you'd be gaining is a tad better climbing stability.
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  4. #4
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    Yes, this would be a lateral move, not a step up or down (hence the head to head comparison question.) I like the Bandit - it pedals well (better than the geometry and suspension design would suggest) and it's a really fun bike downhill. I read the same things about the RIP. I was really looking for real-world riding experience on the two frames when both are spec'ed with a 140mm fork. I sized up to the XL on the Bandit to obtain a longer ETT, but the large RIP has spot-on geometry for me, especially the slacker seat angle. I'm finding on the Bandit that with the 74 degree seattube angle that I have to run a setback post and my saddle all the way back on the rails. The ETT on both would be similar, but the STA on the RIP would be slacker.

  5. #5
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    2012 RIP 9 v. 2012 Bandit 29

    Sounds like you know what you're looking for and have realistic expectations and reasons for considering a switch, so why not? I personally prefer the more upright posture for most of my riding, so a frame with a shorter cockpit and steeper STA works well for me.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by evasive View Post
    Sounds like you know what you're looking for and have realistic expectations and reasons for considering a switch, so why not? I personally prefer the more upright posture for most of my riding, so a frame with a shorter cockpit and steeper STA works well for me.
    I do like the upright position of the Bandit but I have pretty long legs for my height (6'1") and tend to need a bit more pedaling angle. I've found that the optimal STA for me is generally at or less than 73 degrees. I have a offset clamp post on my One 9 and ran a slight setback post on my Jet 9.

  7. #7
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    2012 RIP 9 v. 2012 Bandit 29

    Me, I'm all torso, and 6'3".
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  8. #8
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    I'm actually OK with a short cockpit as long as the STA is slack.

    In any event, this decision is a mere stopgap until I can pop for a Ripley next year. I think Ibis absolutely nailed the geometry on it.

  9. #9
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    Earthpig, I agree with Evasive, sounds like you know what you want. I TOTALLY get where you're coming from on the slacker STA, as I too have quite long legs and used to have to run a setback post with saddle far back on the rails with previous bikes, but not anymore on the Prime - still use a slight setback post, but saddle clamped in middle of rails. After riding the Prime though with much slacker angles than the RIP9 for over a year (in either setting) I don't think I could go back to those sort of steep HTA angles - right now running it in the slack mode with 67.5* HTA and loving it.
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  10. #10
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    What started this whole thought process was trying to find a good dropper post with a setback head. I ran an i900 on my old 575 (until it crapped out at 8 months) and will manually drop the saddle on the Bandit for longer downhills (and then have to stop and manually raise it, of course.) I looked at the LEV - no, Reverb - no, DOSS - no, etc.... I hate to say I'm thinking about changing frames due to the zero-offset-clamp and two-bolt design of most new dropper posts, but hey, I'm a mountain biker with NEEDS, man. The longer legs and concurrent requirement to run my saddle high sort of "requires" the use of a dropper post.

  11. #11
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    Honestly, if that's your only reason for the switch I say save the hassle and money and get one of the single bolt offset droppers. Only just got my X-Fusion HiLo post, but it has the offset and although the single bolt clap, once torque correctly with the supplied anti slip paste have had no troubles - I actually didn't receive the anti slip paste (prob dropped out when customs inspected it) and used anti seize instead, and still no problems torqued to the recommended 150 in lbs. Currently setup using the under the saddle lever and working quite well, not even sure if I'll use the remote

    Quote Originally Posted by Earthpig View Post
    What started this whole thought process was trying to find a good dropper post with a setback head. I ran an i900 on my old 575 (until it crapped out at 8 months) and will manually drop the saddle on the Bandit for longer downhills (and then have to stop and manually raise it, of course.) I looked at the LEV - no, Reverb - no, DOSS - no, etc.... I hate to say I'm thinking about changing frames due to the zero-offset-clamp and two-bolt design of most new dropper posts, but hey, I'm a mountain biker with NEEDS, man. The longer legs and concurrent requirement to run my saddle high sort of "requires" the use of a dropper post.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Honestly, if that's your only reason for the switch I say save the hassle and money and get one of the single bolt offset droppers. Only just got my X-Fusion HiLo post, but it has the offset and although the single bolt clap, once torque correctly with the supplied anti slip paste have had no troubles - I actually didn't receive the anti slip paste (prob dropped out when customs inspected it) and used anti seize instead, and still no problems torqued to the recommended 150 in lbs. Currently setup using the under the saddle lever and working quite well, not even sure if I'll use the remote


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    Remote's are much better IMO,

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by XJaredX View Post
    My friend has an RIP9. I have a '12 Bandit 29. My bike is way, way more fun. That is purely my opinion and I have nothing scientific to qualify that statement with.

    They are both great bikes but I think all you'd be gaining is a tad better climbing stability.
    lol same situation here as well, except that I am the one stuck with the RIP9. I can't complain though...

  14. #14
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    2012 RIP 9 v. 2012 Bandit 29

    I agree with muzzanic, and while I started out with a remote, several of my friends have gone from the handle to the remote and have the same opinion. The dropper post is an order of magnitude better, and the remote is ANOTHER order of magnitude beyond that. It can be a pain and it can be clutter, but once you try it, I suspect you'll like it.

    Heck, I'm still hoping for Mike Levy's dream of a post that drops on its own with the press of a button rather than requiring you to sit on it. Many times when I want to really drop it, I don't want to sit on the saddle, even for a couple seconds.
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  15. #15
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    Meah I know all my trails, I know where I need the saddle slammed and I know where I only need it down a bit and I just organise to suit. Yes the remote would probably be nice, but honestly just one more thing to clutter the bar and one more cable to run. I used the post on my first real ride and hit every kind of terrain from steep, steep downs where I wanted it pretty much slammed to just a bit down and had no issues lowering and raising it. I've ridden for so many years and only ever lowered my saddle on 4 or 5 pieces of trail, that this just a luxury now.

    I'll try the remote in due time, but right now the post is for me, but also for my friends to demo to see if they want one, so swapping a remote from bike to bike isn't such an easy thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by evasive View Post
    I agree with muzzanic, and while I started out with a remote, several of my friends have gone from the handle to the remote and have the same opinion. The dropper post is an order of magnitude better, and the remote is ANOTHER order of magnitude beyond that. It can be a pain and it can be clutter, but once you try it, I suspect you'll like it.

    Heck, I'm still hoping for Mike Levy's dream of a post that drops on its own with the press of a button rather than requiring you to sit on it. Many times when I want to really drop it, I don't want to sit on the saddle, even for a couple seconds.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Meah I know all my trails, I know where I need the saddle slammed and I know where I only need it down a bit and I just organise to suit..
    I know we are lucky here, but I haven't ridden 1/2 the tracks that I do know about & most times I bump into someone on the trails I get told of a heap more that I didn't know about.

  17. #17
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    Dude, our island is 21 x 14 miles at longest and widest points, nothing like NZ, PLUS despite having a crappy memory for all other things, especially names, it's fantastic when it comes to learning stages or trails and memorizing them I mean honestly I could see using the post maybe even more with a remote, but to me honestly, then it'd just be doing it because it was there and not because it's needed.
    Quote Originally Posted by muzzanic View Post
    I know we are lucky here, but I haven't ridden 1/2 the tracks that I do know about & most times I bump into someone on the trails I get told of a heap more that I didn't know about.
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  18. #18
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    I don't like single bolt clamps. I'm the "princess and the pea" with saddle set up, especially tilt. With the i900 (and every other single bolt clamp post I've ever used), I never found a truly comfortable tilt position. That, and occasionally, the bolt would back out and the saddle would find a new tilt position all by itself.

    I also ended up with a bad bone bruise a few years ago from improper saddle set up, which took literally years to heal. When you're riding 50 - 80 miles a week as I do, with the amount of climbing we have, precise saddle position is not a luxury but a necessity.

    At this point, my inclination is to build the RIP, give it a month of riding or so, and then decide which to keep.

  19. #19
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    I'm as "Princess & the Pea" as it gets, I can feel the difference in geo when going from a 2.4" tyre to a 2.2" tyre front or rear, I adjust my saddle height in millimeters as in 2-3 and feel it like a huge difference (I adjust height depending on what shorts I'm wearing I'm so bad about feeling stuff) and I haven't had an issue getting the saddle angle I want on my X-Fusion.

    I guess if you've got the spare cash, then why not, I mean we all know the amount of bikes you're 'sposed to have is X=1, where X is the current amount

    Quote Originally Posted by Earthpig View Post
    I don't like single bolt clamps. I'm the "princess and the pea" with saddle set up, especially tilt. With the i900 (and every other single bolt clamp post I've ever used), I never found a truly comfortable tilt position. That, and occasionally, the bolt would back out and the saddle would find a new tilt position all by itself.

    I also ended up with a bad bone bruise a few years ago from improper saddle set up, which took literally years to heal. When you're riding 50 - 80 miles a week as I do, with the amount of climbing we have, precise saddle position is not a luxury but a necessity.

    At this point, my inclination is to build the RIP, give it a month of riding or so, and then decide which to keep.
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  20. #20
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    I'd still rather have a post - even a straight post over a dropper - with a two bolt tilt adjustment and clamp.

    In any event, now that this thread is completely derailed into a dropper post discussion, I suppose bottom line nobody out there who is paying attention has spent any time on a RIP and a Bandit, so I suppose I'll be the first and post my impressions.

  21. #21
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    Take one for the team and get the RIP

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Earthpig View Post
    At this point, my inclination is to build the RIP, give it a month of riding or so, and then decide which to keep.
    I demo'd a ****-ton of sleds before taking the plunge. I was to the point where I almost nixed the idea of a 29er FS because I couldn't convince myself they weren't all truckish pigs.

    Despite that 'new car smell' I'm still quite enamored with the Niner. The only way I can describe it is that it has the same long-legged nimble feel as my last fs, which was an '05 575 (yeah, I've been outta the loop on my ss.)

    Anyhoo, it's a pretty playful rig that I think you should throw a leg over.

  23. #23
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    The RIP gets rave reviews - the only thing I can see anybody complain about is the weight and the paint chipping on the red one. And the Bandit gets rave reviews and deservedly so - it's a ton faster and more nimble than the '09 575 I had and pedals significantly better with less squat and feedback than any single pivot design I've ever ridden. Either way, I figure I win.

  24. #24
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    OK, so I suppose this is now a moot comparison given that Niner has released the new RIP, but after my first ride on my new/old RIP frame, I figure a comparison is in order. I swapped pretty much every component straight over from the Bandit, except the post, stem and bar, so I could get a pretty even frame-to-frame comparison. The RIP is an L and the Bandit is an XL, but they have the same ETT, so I see them as comparably sized.

    Bottom line, both frames have their strengths. The RIP climbs like a banshee. You would never suspect you're on a 29 lb bike with 115mm of rear travel. Not to say the Bandit was a slow climber at all, but the CVA suspension design flat out works (which I already knew having owned a Jet 9 for a while.)

    The RIP geometry is also spot on. I could definitely sense the shorter wheelbase and the slacker seat tube angle. Gets you way back on the bike, which I like. I tried a 90mm stem last night, but it felt pretty stretched out so I swapped on a 75mm stem afterwards. Should quicken up the handling a tad and compliment the slacker STA. I also feel that the 140 travel fork on the RIP is a better fit than it was on the Bandit. For whatever reason, I always felt that the Bandit was a bit "under forked" - it would be better if run with a 150mm fork or a 140mm with a longer axle to crown than the 140mm Reba I have.

    Now, that said, even with the long wheelbase, I'll have to give the initial thumbs up to the Bandit on quick, turny downhills. The low Bandit BB height - while annoying given all the times I smacked a pedal - definitely lends itself to phenomenal handling downhill. The RIP (with a 140 fork) felt taller overall and a little less "whippy" on tight corners. However, this was just the first ride, and it usually takes me a few rides to get the feel of a new frame. The Bandit suspension felt softer too - definitely more plush. However, I need to dial in the pressure on the RIP. Not to say that a firmer suspension is bad, though. My riding lends itself to a lot of climbing and fast, wide open downhills rather than technical/rock droppy slow kind of riding, so a stiffer suspension is good.

    So, even with a stiff headwind on the steeper parts of the climb on my usual "short" loop (10.5 miles, about 1400 feet of elevation), I pulled an average speed on the RIP that is nearly as fast as I can ride the same loop on my 23 lb carbon hardtail. I'd say that's pretty good for a bike with 5.5" of front travel and 4.5" rear travel that has to be at least 29 lbs.

    Again, all pretty much a moot point with the release of the new RIP, but I have to say that there's not much Niner could have done to improve on the prior model.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2012 RIP 9 v. 2012 Bandit 29-903011_10151526138711544_423869141_o.jpg  

    Last edited by Earthpig; 04-18-2013 at 01:13 PM.

  25. #25
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    I just saw this thread. I've actually ridden both the Bandit and the RIP.

    I agree with your impressions on the suspension, the Bandit has a much more linear feel to it's suspension and that it felt a good bit "plusher" at proper sag set ups. I actually ran a bit less sag than was recommended to "liven" up the bike a bit. It wasn't sluggish by any means it just wasn't what I personally liked in the bike.

    The RIP seems to be a better pedaler, feels a bit more lively at the pedals and tends to "pop" a bit better. I agree also with that you feel a bit higher on the RIP which lends less confidence in really digging into the corners. I actually really liked the low BB on the Bandit as it really ripped through the corners.

    I would say that even though the bikes are a linear swap in terms of performance, that they both are fairly different in execution.

    To me, the RIP is a better climber, more efficient pedaler, and an extremely solid all around sled. The Bandit was a great descender, very good technical climber but suffered a bit in comparison on the smoother climbs.

    I tend to think that both companies really show what they are about with these two bikes. Niner I tend to think of more as the XC/Trail bike company and Transition I tend to think of more as a AM/DH company and that both of these bikes really do show that.

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