Ibis Carbon Mojo vs. Ellsworth Truth
I'm thinking about a new bike to replace my 5 year old Truth.
Most of the riding I do is slow East Coast technical stuff with very little jumping or drops.
The things I would like to improve from the Ellsworth are:
- suspension travel (many bikes could satisfy here)
- stability (slacker head angle)
A friend has an Iron Horse with the DW-link suspension, and I've been favorable been impressed by the suspension quality on his bike from just riding behind him - I haven't had any saddle time.
So onto a few questions:
- anyone here ridden both bikes extensively?
- what other bikes did you try?
- how durable are the frames? I.e. how does the downtube stand up against a low speed crash into a rock...
I'm also considering the Specialized FSR Epic 120 in carbon and the Ellsworth Epiphany.
Trek 29er convert
I haven't ridden a Truth extensively, but I have ridden a Trek Top Fuel 110, and Ibis Mojo, a Specialized S-Works Epic, Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper FSR, Ellsworth Ephiphany, Ellsworth Moment, and a Yeti 575 (all with either XTR or X.0) and out of all of those I just bought an Ibis Mojo. When I rode the Mojo I was astounded at how stable, smooth, and confidence inspiring it was. Never before have I stepped on a bike and felt so comfortable. I have nothing but good things to say about it. I've owned it for about 6 weeks now and have about 500 miles on it and love it more every time I ride it.
You mentioned the FSR Epic 120. Did you mean the FSR Expert 120? Or the Epic? I'm guessing you meant one of the Stumpjumper FSR models since the Epic only has 100mm of travel and is a true XC bike, where as the FSR is more of an all-mountain bike like the others you're looking at.
I spent a few days on an FSR Expert 120 and liked it. Not as much as the Ibis, but I definitely liked it. It was a good, solid bike, great on the descents, but a little heavy to take uphill. Would I rent one if I was flying to Chamonix to ride? Definitely. Would I buy one to ride on a daily basis... probably not. I'd want something lighter. But I certainly don't have anything bad to say about it.
As for the Ellsworth, I get the Epiphany and the Moment confused. One was too heavy for me, and the other just felt like an XC bike that bounced more. Although I do have friends who like each very much. Several of my buddies really like their Ellsworth Truth's, although the one who has ridden my Ibis is in the process of selling his Truth so he can buy an Ibis. Mine's lighter than his, and it has more travel (25.5 lbs, size L) So I guess I wasn't wildly impressed with the Ellsworth's, other than the Truth.
When it comes to stability, I find it sufficiently stable such that I have no problem on 35 mph descents, and I can also ride logs on it, etc., but at the same time it's nimble enough for tight singletrack. My buddies on 7" travel bikes thought the Mojo is too twitchy when they tired it, but I come from an XC background, not a DH background, so I think it's great. And I've gotta say, switching from 3.5" of travel to 5.5" of travel has done wonders for my riding. It took half a ride to get used to it, but now I won't go back. It's more comfortable, easier, more confidence inspiring, and well, more fun! I'm riding better, I'm riding harder stuff, and it makes me want to ride more often. And that's what a bike is supposed to do, isn't it? Go ride 'em all, and if there's one that really makes you want to ride it more, buy that one! All of the bikes you're looking at are great bikes. Just depends on your style.
As for durability. So far so good. I've crashed it, dropped it, and ridden it hard, and all is well. Given how thin the tubes appear to be on a Truth, if you haven't hurt your Truth, you won't hurt an Ibis Mojo.
I have it built up with '07 XTR, a Fox Talas 140, and a Fox RP23 rear shock. Couldn't be happier!
Hope that helps. Happy riding!
I haven't ridden the Truth, but I ride a lot of slow technical riding and have taken my Mojo to the Moab region for 6 weekend trips (including thanksgiving) since I got it in the beginning of October.
It continues to amaze me at how well it rides technical stuff, the more I ride it the more it feels like I am cheating. The stability and control it gives me is nothing short of amazing, I can't count the number of times I have lifted over a tall obstacle, come to a complete stop part way through it and continued as if I was track standing on flats.
It has also been smooth on the 1' - 3' drops I ride out in Moab and I can't wait to take it to the high single colorado single track in the coming spring and summer, it also gets a 3 week trip to whistler/pembarton/squamish in the summer as well.
I came from another 5" bike before the mojo (a single pivot design - fisher cake dlx2) so the change in suspension up to 5.5" hasn't been a noticable isssue for me - it has been the change in ride feel, particularly up technical challenges that has me grinning from ear to ear every time I take it out for another ride.
I've ridden 3 of the 4 geometry versions of the Truth, pre ICT and 2 ICT versions. Haven't ridden the latest from about a year ago with the more parallel upper swingarm and slightly slacker head angle.
The Mojo is the same weight (using same components). And it completely outperforms in every aspect, climbing (seated or standing) maintains momentum much better whether smooth or rough trail with much less bob and better bump compliance using the longer travel softer spring and very soft damping. Handling is much more stable, not nearly as quick but not slow in response at all. Braking has much better traction. Looks are subjective, but the Mojo Carbon sure gets a lot of positive comments as I ride by.
The '07 Specialized has returned to Horst link drop-out pivot geometry and shouldn't need as firm damping or brain platform lockout as the earlier decade FSR de-evolution towards ICT suspension geometry required. The Horst-link suspension is a distant second in performance quality in comparison to dw-Link. Current ICT performance is worse than a quality monopivot design (although the high end platform shocks hide the difference well).
Hi everyone - thanks for the many comments and answering all my questions. One thing I forgot to ask was whether anyone who has posted is on the smaller side weightwise. I weight between 140 and 130 depending whether its winter trim or summer trim, respectively. I suppose that the softer damping and softer spring will mean that the Ibis will be even better for me compared to the Truth than heavier folks, right?
Another question I have is whether folks here have spent alot of time doing log pulls and East Coast type riding on their bikes such as some of the non-big drop stuff at Lynn Woods here outside of Boston, for instance.
I meant the Specialized full carbon frame (must be S-Works) with 120mm of travel. My apologies for not Google searching in advance of posting.
Since I cannot probably test ride an Ibis very easily, I will definitely have to borrow my friend's Iron Horse to get a feel for the suspension performance.
Again - thanks for all the helpful comments. I am most interested in people's impressions of the ride, and I think this forum (other articles plus this thread) has given me as accurate as a view as I can get without actually riding the bike.
Its funny that you mention Lynn Woods, because this is the main location that I was riding when I developed dw-link. If there is one place that I have ridden that will really let the system shine, Lynn Woods is the place. Get to some steep climbs and just start pedaling. Let the bike's traction and compliance eat up the roots and small rocks.
Since every rider and their type of riding is different, it's sometimes difficult to answer bike comparison questions. However, I felt inclined to reply for the following reasons:
-The FS bikes I've owned and ridden extensively are (in order): Trek Fuel, Ellsworth Truth, Ellsworth ID (still have), and now the Mojo Carbon.
-I also live in MA, so I'm sure we ride the same trails
-I'm 5'9 and weigh 140-150, depending on season.
-based on your post, we both aren't looking for big jumps/drops
Funny b/c your question regarding downtube/bb abuse was probably my number 1 concern. First thing I noticed when I got the frame is that this area is really beefed up, you can tell there are more carbon layers there. This area has sustained hits from logs, rocks, and roots. I know the carbon doubters out there are just waiting for cracked Mojos to start turning up...but I have to say, I just can't see it. Unless the hucksters start riding them of course.
It is the perfect trail bike for our terrain. Very efficient and seems to have endless travel.
Derby has some great technical posts on riding the Mojo. Most of it is over my head, but some solid data points form an experienced rider....
integrated headset issues?
Thanks for the replies regarding riding around Boston here!
Another question I have about the Ibis is the integrated headset. Do the bearings ride on carbon, or on a steel pressed in cup? If the latter, can the cup be replaced?
It rides in aluminum, I thought.
Originally Posted by albertclew
The Mojo uses two aluminum cups that are bonded into the frame. They cannot be replaced, but they could be re-faced. That said, we haven't seen significant wear on the cups with any of the portotypes that have seen the most service time.
Horst-link is still the only completely active design out there. Some would consider it to be
Originally Posted by derby
too active, but suspension preference is really a subjective thing. Because the Horst-link
design completely isolates the rear wheel from the drivetrain, the rear wheel is free to
follow the contours of the trail, making Horst-link the best design overall for traction,
especially up loose climbs. It also will not suffer from any susp. induced pedal feedack,
although the latest dw-link and VPP designs do a pretty good job of neutralizing this.
I havent ridden a dw-link, but I'm assuming its a pretty good design based on what I've
read here on the 2 dw-link manuf. forums. Horst-link will be more susceptible to pedal-bob
issues, but the platform shocks work reasonably well to neutralize this; if youre a
smooth pedaler, pedal-bob should not be a major issue on a well-executed HL design.
Just to reiterate what folks on other forums have said, it can be the greatest
susp. design in the world, but if its poorly executed, it will still be a crappy ride.
Geometry should be the number one consideration when purchasing a bike.
There are plenty of susp. designs out there that will perform adequately well on the
trail, but if the geometry isnt right, then you will not enjoy the ride.
My Mojo arrived 2 wks ago & now am feeling guilty because my 06 Truth is collecting dust. I'm 5'8 and weigh 130 and generally dont do jumps or drops over 1ft.
The Mojo is so stable that I now have the confidence to do all the log rolls and bigger drops/ jumps. The climbing and decending ability on loose rocky terain is just amazing, so much that all I do is look for the roughest line and take that to test the traction, and am coming away from each ride grinning with excitement.
The Truth is faster out of corners in single track, but not by too much, and climbs quicker except when on loose rocky terain.
Hope this helps you and others in their bike buying decision.