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  1. #1
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    Epiphany or not?

    I am considering an Epiphany SST2 as I really want a US made frame if possible. I know Taiwan makes quality stuff and I still may go that route if I have to, but it's a personal thing. This will be my first long travel trailbike and I want to make sure the more "seasoned" Epiphany is still comparable with more recent designs. I rode a Trek Remedy 9.8 on local trails yesterday and really liked it. I wonder how much of that sweetness was Trek's ABP, DRCV fork/shock tune, full floater shock, etc. The Epiphany appears to match long travel, with lighter weight than some of it's competitors like the Foes Shaver and Intense Tracer 2. I was also looking at the Ventana El Ciclon, but I keep coming back to the Epiphany. I am considering ordering one from bikebling.com. I'm not sure if their low price gets me a 2011 or 2012 frameset. I called them and had a hard time understanding the guy there. It sounded like he was saying they were out of medium blue frames, but could get either 2011 or 2012 from the manufacturer, presumably with a difference in price. Is there a substantial difference? Did the 2011 have the tapered headtube?

  2. #2
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    I love my epiphany. I got a 2011 ordered through my LBS at a discount. I believe the Ellsworth webstore is currently discounting 2011 models. The 2011 does not have the tapered head tube. The 2012 has .25" more travel at 5.5"...negligible in my mind.

    Ellsworth webstore "Factory Outlet"

    Epiphany SST-1 for $1,695

    The bike climbs like a mt goat (70 degree head tube angle) and I never use the propedal as it's just not needed. There is virtually no pedal kickback or brakejack. It descends beautifully and is on par with other 4-bar linkage bikes. I've had great experiences with warranty service and there is something to be said for made in the USA stuff! The welds are meticulous on my bike...thanks Chuy!

    No brainer at that price!

  3. #3
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    Isn't your 2011 an SST-2?

  4. #4
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    The 2010 frame is the SST-1 non tapered headtube at 140mm (5.5")
    The 2011 frame is the SST-2 tapered headtube at 140mm (5.5") plus some other minor differences from the SST-1.

    I have an SST-1 (blue) frame all buit up and ready to go but haven't ridden it on the trail yet. I can't wait to as it looks great and I hope that it rides that way as well.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by sammon287 View Post
    Isn't your 2011 an SST-2?
    Yes...I misspoke. I got an SST1 in 2011 for a discount cuz it was last year's model. Sorry for the confusion.

  6. #6
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    Before you drop a ton of cash, I'd ride more bikes to see what you like the best. I have an '08 Epiphany and swapped rides for a friends Trek Fuel EX9. The Trek had an inch less travel and rode every bit as well as mine. The Remedy be even better.

    I would not buy another frame from bikebling. I felt hustled after it was over. They advertised free shipping for my frame and wouldn't give it to me only offering to split it. Then there was no 10% discount because the new frames would be coming in by the time my order was processed. There advertising is very deceptive and once they have you on the phone it's like a used car dealer. I couldn't imagine having to use them for warranty service.

    Get the frame from the Ellsworth shop.

    Good luck

  7. #7
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    This is very enlightening. Thanks. I did not get a warm and fuzzy feeling when I called them (Bike Bling) once. I e-mailed with some questions and got an answer like "To save some money on a 2012 Ellsworth, call me at 555-5555". It did strike me as similar to used car sales. If I have to pay full retail for an Epiphany with XT build, then it's out of my self imposed price range of 4.5k. They advertise that package in every magazine for $4,595, and the shopping cart allows you to apply a MBA2012 code for an additional 10% off. I now believe that price was for leftover frames and components, but they told me there were no more medium frames in stock. It seemed too could to be true and I guess it is. The normal retail for that build is around $5,300 and I just have to draw the line somewhere. A $1000 is a $1000. I may see a Remedy 9 in my future for $4200. I really want to buy USA though. This keeps me up at night. I'm spending weeks agonizing over which $4-5k bicycle to buy. More money, More problems, right?
    Last edited by sammon287; 04-17-2012 at 08:38 PM.

  8. #8
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    Have you thought about buying the parts and building it up yourself?

  9. #9
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    I have considered that, but have not priced it out. I didn't think I could match the price on the fork, wheels, and components with the build kits offered by wholesalers. I would like to avoid the headache of buying incompatible parts and having a Frankenbike, but I guess I should look into that further.

  10. #10
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    It really isn't that hard. Price point sells parts pretty cheap. Getting a fork cheap can be tough. I usually just look at used forks either here on on ebay and figure in a 75$ rebuild. You can look around and get really good deals and it is fun to do it yourself. If you don't think you can put it together yourself or have a friend that can help then it might be a pain. Most bike shops will charge you at least a 100$ to build a bike, and it pisses them off.
    I love my epiphany though and would really recommend it.
    Live fast, Die young, Leave a good looking corpse!

  11. #11
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    If you can get the frame from the factory for $1695, you'll have a little extra money for the fork. Build a spreadsheet with all of the parts that you need and then start shopping. When you find the good sales, get a couple of pieces. Before you know it, you're done. I built my son's bike that way and got some smoking deals. I did f-up the head and bought the wrong type, but a friend needed one and liked the price.

    Good luck

  12. #12
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    sizing

    Hi, does anyone own a medium epiphany sst2 which they could measure for me? I have a few dimensions I'm curious about. Namely, they say they lowered the BB to 12.3" for 2012, but I've heard that this isn't true. Also, there is no reach measurement on the website.

    To calculate reach, you take a piece of string with something heavy on it so it becomes a plumb line, and run it down from the middle of the top of the head tube (not the headset or stem... the top of the head tube part of the frame itself, right in the middle of the circular opening of the head tube), drop this line down vertically, and then measure the distance from the BB to the string, horizontally, parallel to the ground.

    Here's a diagram of reach:
    bikegeo.muha.cc/
    It's the top red line that measures horizontal distance from the BB to the Head Tube.

    Can anyone do this for me on an Epiphany SST2? Medium frame is preferred but I would take specs on this for a large or small too.

    Thanks.

  13. #13
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    There are many "newer" bikes out there, but that doesn't mean they have made any big strides regarding suspension design. Shock design, on the other hand has evolved much, but your epiphany will come equipped with one such shock.


    Ellsworth ICT design is very effective in isolating the suspension from braking and pedaling forces, which translates into a bike that feels absorbing all impacts no matter in what situation or trail condition. Their existing designs, I am sure, each year undergo engineering to make them lighter, stiffer, suppler, otherwise they would end up with obsolete products. If they dont seem more up to date may be only from lack of advertising.

    That it is the right bike for you, only you can determine that. The Epiphany is a XCish type of trail bike with aggresive geometry (70 degree head angle) designed to be as light as possible. So make an effort to try different bikes, if you find one that suits you better, well, better for you.

    I bought the epiphany frame because I wanted a trail bike with XC geometry and sharp feeling. Very very few bikes around with these characteristics!!!!

  14. #14
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    I've built 3 bikes myself and learned the hard way on the first build. Make sure the parts you get are the correct size and length for YOU. Bar width, cranks, seat post, gearing, etc can get a little confusing if you don't know what you are looking for. On the bright side, MTBR is a great place to research.

    I bought my frame at Wrench Science online. They have a great measuring system which can give you information on stem length, frame size, and such. I'm sure there are many other places that do this too but I went through these guys. They weren't bad to deal with, I bought 2 bikes through them.

    Good luck
    2009 Black Ellsworth Epiphany built to my spec's...

  15. #15
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    Building a bike takes more time and effort. But for me, it is well worth it. With the sales on components going on, you can build a bike for less money than a complete. As .40AET and Hammy713 said, a spreadsheet and MTBR are the two most valuable tools to use.

    The best thing is picking out which components you want. Most of the time, complete bikes offer wheel sets that are too heavy for me. I also like tubeless and usually prefer different (usually knobbier) tires.

    And of course, there are color preferences for different components.

  16. #16
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    I agree with glance2, I prefer to build my bikes. There is something to be said for having everything you want on your bike.
    2009 Black Ellsworth Epiphany built to my spec's...

  17. #17
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    I bought my Epiphany from BikeBling in November of 2011. it came with 2012 Fox RP23 and Talas fork, both with Kashimi Coat. I got excellent service and a good price. I've bought a lot of stuff from them since then...tools, some parts...My only complaint is that they're slow getting the stuff to me.

    I tried buying a closeout frame from Ellsworth before I bought this bike...but the ONLY medium frame they had was a pink one, which I just couldn't live with, so I wound up buying a new one. I wound up buying the whole bike, cause I liked the spec and couldn't buy the parts any cheaper separately. However, my bike came with Ellsworth's XC wheelset, and if I had it to do again, I'd have opted for the AM wheelset. I didn't care too much at the time cause I was planning on running my Crossmax's on it anyway, but I ultimate put the XC wheels on my Truth, and found them to be too light for my fat ass. I think the AM set would have been fine, and I like their rims and hubs..I just think that the 24 spoke wheels are useless for anything really aggressive.

    As for my Epiphany...well, I love it. For comparison, I also have a Yeti ASR5C, and a 2009 Ellsworth Truth (sst.1). The Epiphany is my favorite of the three. It turns better than the Yeti, and has the best suspension of the three. It's slightly longer and slacker than the Truth, but that's a good thing, IMO, for a lot of the riding I do. The one area where the Yeti owns the Epiphany is descending... not a surprise, as it's longer and slacker, with a lower BB than the Ellsworth.

    If I had one complaint about the Ellsworth, it would be that I've seen a couple of them with dings in the downtube...it's pretty thin material. I built a hard kydex rock guard for mine that took care of that possibility. I've had zero issues with either of the two Ellsworths I have now, or with the 2002 Truth I used to ride (which my wife rides now). My Yeti, OTOH, is waiting for a replacement rear triangle right now, because the original one broke (and I didn't even crash).

    The Epiphany (medium) with a complete XO 3x10 groupset and 2011 Mavic Crossmax STs weighs right at 25 lbs, but this is with a Loaded carbon handlebar and TR Racing Ralphs, and without the rock guard I mentioned above.

    Oh, one other thing...I was talking to a guy at Ellsworth a while back, and asking about my 2009 SST.1 Truth...I was trying to confirm what year it was made. He told me that they no longer categorize their frames by 'model year', but by model..(sst.1, sst.2, etc.).

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