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  1. #1
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    Ferrentino on the Ripley

    Exclusive: Dream Bikes-the Extended Version

    More or less lines up with my demo experience. It's a great read.

  2. #2
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    Does Mike still work for Santa Cruz bikes?
    Go get that KOM "You Deserve" - http://www.digitalepo.com/index.php

  3. #3
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    Ferrentino on the Ripley

    Sounds like he needed the Pike DPA/Talas or a 140 fork.


    simenf - brainwashed by the big wheel mafia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TahoeBC View Post
    Does Mike still work for Santa Cruz bikes?
    Hasn't for a year or more I think.

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    Honestly think that's the first and only time I've seen someone complain about flex on a Ripley. Also not sure why he didn't opt for a 140mm fork given the type of riding he knew he'd be doing.

    Maybe he was doing some old coworkers a favor by sandbagging the review a bit?

  6. #6
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    Ever reviewer and every rider is different. Some people don't like the ripley and some do.

    Some people like single speeds and some don't. It's whatever floats your boat I guess

    At least we now know he "doesn't give give a sh** how clean a bike looks"

  7. #7
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    I seriously doubt he dropped 10 grand on a Ripley so that he could write a quite fair, but not completely positive review. I'm also going to go out on a limb and suggest he's capable of telling the difference between front and rear suspension performance.

    The Ripley has a relatively firm and progressive feeling rear stroke. That's great for many applications. But for a lot of folks, myself included, it would prevent it from being a "one bike solution." If I could afford to have two full suspension bikes, a Ripley would absolutely be one of them.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by hillharman View Post
    I seriously doubt he dropped 10 grand on a Ripley so that he could write a quite fair, but not completely positive review. I'm also going to go out on a limb and suggest he's capable of telling the difference between front and rear suspension performance.
    Unless I misread something, he clearly states this bike was not purchased "out of pocket". He had a green light to purchase anything.

  9. #9
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    Great review. I experienced the same issues with my Ripley.

    Quote Originally Posted by hillharman View Post
    Exclusive: Dream Bikes-the Extended Version

    More or less lines up with my demo experience. It's a great read.
    Yes, the Ripley is a great ride. BUT:
    When you buy a 6000 $ bike , it should not creak after a few rides. and if it does, it should be fixable. My Ripley kept creaking.
    Maybe the 2015 Ripley 2.0 will be better. Untill then, i'm Moving on to a Santa cruz Tallboy LTC.

  10. #10
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    Fairly thorough compared to most reviews we see these days. When it comes to multithousand dollar bikes I would sure like to see more than a few paragraphs however.

    Internal cable routing... Creates a lot of problems. Routing cables down under the downtube is clean and simple and effective. Aesthetically, downtube routing gets you 99% of what internal routing gives you. A frame at this price range should have absolutely zero problems with cable routing. It is such a simple issue and simple fix there should be no excuses.

    120 mm of travel is no mans land. Perhaps if your trails dictate this sort of bike to be best then go for it otherwise as an all rounder I think it is a poor choice. 140 mm travel on a multi link bike with new rear shock technology pedals extremely well. No need to shorten the travel. While I still like hardtails and purebred cross-country racers, I've evolved to where I find 120 mm travel cross-country land. And all-purpose quiver killer it is not.

    Creaking pivots. Totally unacceptable. A frame costing this much should not creak. I am assuming the creaking is coming from the frame and not components.

    If I had a dollar for every post that recommended a longer than specified travel fork as a panacea for poor downhill performance...

  11. #11
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    on the topic of flex, i agree with Mike that the Ripley does have a bit of noticeable flex if it's pushed hard into corners and/or ridden back-to-back against a less flexible bike like the Pivot 429C. I had a chance to do just that at Outerbike last year and the Ripley's flex was very noticeable. That being said, they are too different bikes with different goals, especially comparing the 429c with 120 fork and the Ripley with a 140 fork. I'm having a difficult time, personally, choosing between each bike bike for my area and type of riding... though I'm leaning towards a bit of flex.
    For me, the only option on the Ripley should be a 140 fork, specially with the Pike. That combo is nearly perfect or almost everything from cross-country to mild free ride. My dream would be for Ibis to build a bit stiffer frame to match the Pike fork and better cable routing while addressing all noise issues. Are you listening Hans?
    "You can become a very fast donkey, but you'll never be a thoroughbred..."

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    Fairly thorough compared to most reviews we see these days. When it comes to multithousand dollar bikes I would sure like to see more than a few paragraphs however.

    Internal cable routing... Creates a lot of problems. Routing cables down under the downtube is clean and simple and effective. Aesthetically, downtube routing gets you 99% of what internal routing gives you. A frame at this price range should have absolutely zero problems with cable routing. It is such a simple issue and simple fix there should be no excuses.

    120 mm of travel is no mans land. Perhaps if your trails dictate this sort of bike to be best then go for it otherwise as an all rounder I think it is a poor choice. 140 mm travel on a multi link bike with new rear shock technology pedals extremely well. No need to shorten the travel. While I still like hardtails and purebred cross-country racers, I've evolved to where I find 120 mm travel cross-country land. And all-purpose quiver killer it is not.

    Creaking pivots. Totally unacceptable. A frame costing this much should not creak. I am assuming the creaking is coming from the frame and not components.

    If I had a dollar for every post that recommended a longer than specified travel fork as a panacea for poor downhill performance...
    Couldn't agree more...I really wanted this bike and still do. Unfortunately I can't justify buying it without looking around at other offerings due to some of these issues.

    Part of me is hoping that if I hold off long enough; ibis will release a more polished version of the Ripley and I can purchase that.

  13. #13
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    I don't disagree. I LOVE the ride of the Ripley, and I find it a perfect endurance race and aggro-XC bike. Built light with a 120mm fork it's really fun to ride (I have a BronsonC for rowdier days.) Really efficient, snappy, fun bike.

    That said there are certainly some refinements that are needed. I think we can all agree that the cable routing is not good. The Bronson is so much simpler, quieter, and generally better (top of downtube to swingarm, all external). The zip ties around the cables in side the frame to keep them quiet and the metal steerer tube protector are pretty bush-league. And even with all cables routed perfectly per Ibis's spec, there are several places that get massive cable rub, like inside of the clevis and the upper shock mount area.

    I've experienced pretty limited creaking in the ~3 months I've been on the Ripley. It does happen from time to time, but seems to come and go; not sure why.

    All in all it's a great bike, and I can't think of one I'd rather have. But these relatively minor issues do bug me, and keep it from being a PERFECT bike, in my opinion. Here's hoping the folks at Ibis can find some more elegant solutions to these issues.

  14. #14
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    I've had my Ripley since last October. To date, I can't recall any creaking from what would be the frame (only the SPD pedals, and some lube on the cleats/pedals fixed that). I don't notice any flex, even when carving into corners. I'm not an aggressive rider. I just like getting out and riding singletrack

    Cable rub points, indeed, there are a few. I noticed I was getting cable rub on the inside of the clevis, on the side of the head tube, and also under the rear derailleur housing on the top of the swingarm. I placed shelter tape patches in all those areas.

    I found the front derailleur cable housing kept getting sucked up into the frame whilst riding. It kind of crept inwards, and has resulted in scoring on the housing from the entry/exit (depending on which direction one is talking ) in the headtube. I had to add another zip tie to the cables after the exited the frame, and that seems to have fixed it.

    I like the Ripley. I went to this from a 92 Merlin hardtail with a 100mm SID, so I'm loving it. Sure there are some improvements that could be made. Hopefully if Ibis do end up with some improvements, I kind of hope they can be "retrofittable".

  15. #15
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    Ferrentino on the Ripley

    I test rode an XL Ripley in the fall and was completely put off by the back end flex. Granted, I'm a tall guy and over 200 lbs but every time I pushed the Ripley hard into a corner it just didn't want to go where I wanted it to go. Honestly, I've never ridden a bike with so much back end wag.

    I'm sure glad I rode one before I decided to buy one. Would have been a waste of money for be because of its inability to hold a hard line.
    SC Tallboy C : SC Nomad 3 : Giant TCX SLR : Giant Propel Adv SL

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    If I had a dollar for every post that recommended a longer than specified travel fork as a panacea for poor downhill performance...
    I don't know what you mean here, since the Ripley is clearly stated by Ibis to be designed for a 120mm or a 140mm fork. Most of the complaints about the Ripley I've seen in reviews seem to be related to the reviewer wanting better (often more stable) performance during fast downhills, yet the reviewed bike had a 120mm fork. If you want the best downhill performance, you should go with the 140. That why I put a 140mm Pike on my Ripley, and I don't notice the negative traits on downhills.

    I suppose this just shows there is no perfect bike for every situation. Clearly there is a trade-off with fork size, and you can get better downhill performance with longer fork, but you will also get more weight and change the other handling a bit. The thing is, this is not a fault of the bike (in fact, it is an explicit part of Ibis' design), so to complain about it without recognizing the trade-off is poor reviewing. It's like complaining about a bike's lack of traction when the bike has small-block racing tires - it's not the bike's fault, and the reviewers should recognize the trade-off, but often they do not.

  17. #17
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    If you've ridden the Ripley through a rock garden at speed, you will have noticed that the rear end is not the pinnacle of plushness. This can result in a squirrelly feeling. You could put a dual crown DH fork on it and this wouldn't change.

    It's a great bike, but it is still sub 5" on the back end, and a relatively firm sub 5" at that. There are plusher bikes out there. This doesn't seem to be a controversial point to make. Nor is it relevant if it's the bike's "fault." Bikes can't be at fault. But the bottom line is that there are more capable bikes going downhill in chunky terrain than the Ripley, including some 29ers. Most of them compromise pedaling efficiency to some extent relative to the Ripley. Even the best bikes out there make some sort of compromise, and the Ripley leans more towards the XC side of the spectrum.

    If you want to read unequivocally positive reviews of your bike of choice, there are plenty of those out there. This review actually does a great job of pointing out the limitations of the bike, and the most amazing bikes have limitations, and that makes it far more useful than the ad copy that passes for reviews in most magazines.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by hillharman View Post
    If you've ridden the Ripley through a rock garden at speed, you will have noticed that the rear end is not the pinnacle of plushness. This can result in a squirrelly feeling. You could put a dual crown DH fork on it and this wouldn't change.

    It's a great bike, but it is still sub 5" on the back end, and a relatively firm sub 5" at that. There are plusher bikes out there. This doesn't seem to be a controversial point to make. Nor is it relevant if it's the bike's "fault." Bikes can't be at fault. But the bottom line is that there are more capable bikes going downhill in chunky terrain than the Ripley, including some 29ers. Most of them compromise pedaling efficiency to some extent relative to the Ripley. Even the best bikes out there make some sort of compromise, and the Ripley leans more towards the XC side of the spectrum.

    If you want to read unequivocally positive reviews of your bike of choice, there are plenty of those out there. This review actually does a great job of pointing out the limitations of the bike, and the most amazing bikes have limitations, and that makes it far more useful than the ad copy that passes for reviews in most magazines.
    I agree that there are limitations/compromises in every bike design. That was one of my points. But my main point is that reviews that complain about downhill handling with a 120mm fork should recognize that handling is better with a 140mm fork.

    And I don't care to read only positive reviews. For example, your comment about plushness and it's usual trade-off with pedaling efficiency is a fair one. But it is a disservice to a review's readers to complain about the Ripley's handling during hard downhills using a 120mm fork when the 140mm fork is clearly better suited for that type of riding.

  19. #19
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    My Ripley has a 140 Fox up front, it's a good choice for anyone that does a bit more aggressive stuff. The Pike must work even better.
    It's great fun on twisty single tracks, the only weakness is that when you hit nasty rock gardens and the terrain gets really bad, you feel the bike is out of it's comfort zone.
    It is a very good XC/Trail 29 bike. (If I ignore the mechanical problems that i wrote about up on this thread).
    The best climbing 29er FS bike that i rode. great fun to corner and jump.
    The flickable feel has a down side - I felt a bit unsecured on a straight line super fast technical downhills.
    I did not notice any flex in the rear end of the bike, maybe because I'm a skinny guy...
    Hope Ibis will get the "Ripley mark 2" done right.

  20. #20
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    Putting a longer travel fork on a bike to improve DH performance is an act of desperation when trying to make the bike something it isn't.

    It raises the BB. It compromises a bike's ability to turn and carve not only on the flats, but also on the DH. It will shine a spotlight on a frames insufficient rear travel and stiffness.

    If you want a better band aid, start with a shorter stem, wider bars, bigger rubber...

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by hillharman View Post
    If you've ridden the Ripley through a rock garden at speed, you will have noticed that the rear end is not the pinnacle of plushness. This can result in a squirrelly feeling. You could put a dual crown DH fork on it and this wouldn't change.

    It's a great bike, but it is still sub 5" on the back end, and a relatively firm sub 5" at that. There are plusher bikes out there. This doesn't seem to be a controversial point to make. Nor is it relevant if it's the bike's "fault." Bikes can't be at fault. But the bottom line is that there are more capable bikes going downhill in chunky terrain than the Ripley, including some 29ers. Most of them compromise pedaling efficiency to some extent relative to the Ripley. Even the best bikes out there make some sort of compromise, and the Ripley leans more towards the XC side of the spectrum.

    If you want to read unequivocally positive reviews of your bike of choice, there are plenty of those out there. This review actually does a great job of pointing out the limitations of the bike, and the most amazing bikes have limitations, and that makes it far more useful than the ad copy that passes for reviews in most magazines.
    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    Putting a longer travel fork on a bike to improve DH performance is an act of desperation when trying to make the bike something it isn't.

    It raises the BB. It compromises a bike's ability to turn and carve not only on the flats, but also on the DH. It will shine a spotlight on a frames insufficient rear travel and stiffness.

    If you want a better band aid, start with a shorter stem, wider bars, bigger rubber...
    LOL, two pos reps given

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yody View Post
    LOL, two pos reps given
    Remember, we're looking at a 5lb frame with 120mm. Nobody is saying this is going to be a downhill monster. With that said, plenty of racers have shown the Ripley can be quite capable in enduro races if setup correctly. (using a 140mm fork)

    For Ibis-sponsored racers who have access to others frames like the HD or HDR, seeing them choose a Ripley for an enduro race shows the bike is capable downhill...

    Bikes of the Enduro World Series - Finale Ligure, Italy - Pinkbike

    Racing Enduro World Series Round #1

    Jeff Kendall-Weed's Ibis Ripley at the Santa Cruz Super Enduro - PIT BITS - 2013 Santa Cruz Super Enduro - Mountain Biking Pictures - Vital MTB

    Tommy McGrath with his Ibis Ripley at Bend Oregon Enduro - 2013 Bend Oregon Enduro Pit Bits and Pro Bikes - Mountain Biking Pictures - Vital MTB

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pelly_NH View Post
    Remember, we're looking at a 5lb frame with 120mm. Nobody is saying this is going to be a downhill monster. With that said, plenty of racers have shown the Ripley can be quite capable in enduro races if setup correctly. (using a 140mm fork)

    For Ibis-sponsored racers who have access to others frames like the HD or HDR, seeing them choose a Ripley for an enduro race shows the bike is capable downhill...

    Bikes of the Enduro World Series - Finale Ligure, Italy - Pinkbike

    Racing Enduro World Series Round #1

    Jeff Kendall-Weed's Ibis Ripley at the Santa Cruz Super Enduro - PIT BITS - 2013 Santa Cruz Super Enduro - Mountain Biking Pictures - Vital MTB

    Tommy McGrath with his Ibis Ripley at Bend Oregon Enduro - 2013 Bend Oregon Enduro Pit Bits and Pro Bikes - Mountain Biking Pictures - Vital MTB
    Not saying it can't be ridden downhill quickly and with much enjoyment. But you'll notice it's the only 120mm travel bike in all of those lists.

  24. #24
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    this is the first I've read of the ripley rear end flex.

    Can anyone coming off an ibis mojo / sl compare the flex? Tough question, I know.

    I've ridden a ripley more than once, but all parking lot spins. And all with carbon wheels. Felt pretty stiff!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man View Post
    this is the first I've read of the ripley rear end flex.

    Can anyone coming off an ibis mojo / sl compare the flex? Tough question, I know.

    I've ridden a ripley more than once, but all parking lot spins. And all with carbon wheels. Felt pretty stiff!
    I never noticed flex on the Ripley while I was riding it. The next day, when I took my HD out on the same trails it became apparent. The HD felt super stiff in comparison. Apples to Oranges though.

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