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  1. #1
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    Upgraded alloy RIP 9 alloy to RIP 9 RDO - awesome!

    I bought a medium alloy RIP 9, XT build, last spring to replace an Air 9. I loved it right off the bat and started mountain biking more (had started riding mainly road). I decided to start racing a bit this year and splurged last week - just bought a blue RIP 9 RDO, XX1 build, size large. I decided to change frame size since I was running a 100mm stem on my old RIP and felt like I was too far in front at times. I had A LOT of seatpost showing (5'10.5", long legs, short torso) so I decided to go with the large RDO and 70 mm stem.
    The dropper post is ordered and en route but I picked up the bike to get it on a maiden voyage today. I moved over my Chinese carbon rims/hope hubs wheels so wheels/tires were the same as from my Alloy Rip.
    First ride today on rails I have done MANY times before with multiple short but steep 10-15min climbs, XC single track, and a cool high-bermed descent. This bike ROCKS! My legs weren't in condition to set any PR's today, but I came close with what felt like much less effort compared to what I had to put out with the alloy RIP. The RDO was much smoother and more plush, AND climbed great. I wanted a 30t front ring, but that is also still on order so there temporarily is a 32t ring on there. My alloy RIP was 2x20 with a 24t small ring in front and 36t granny. An equivalent granny would need a 28t ring for XX1, so my granny today was essentially 2 gears harder. I only looked for an easier gear once and couldn't believe how well the RIP RDO climbed. I know that on a good day and pushing at race pace, I'll kill my previous climbs. The alloy RIP already descended beautifully, but I felt even better on the RDO, in part I'm sure due to the larger frame and shorter stem. I was pleasantly surprised that a tight downhill switchback that has never felt great before seemed easy today (actually easier both up and down).
    I am not a big jumper, but the small jumps, rollers, and drops that I did just felt effortless with the RDO. The lighter weight is noticeable on takeoff and in the air and the landing is softer. Can't wait for a different ride with more/larger drops and jumps.
    XX1 worked beautifully - quiet, simple, and it just plain works! Maybe not worth the price of upgrading a current bike but worth it if building up a new bike.
    Can't wait to take it up the longer mountain climbs (and descents! ) in a few weeks.

    Anybody contemplating the switch (without breaking the bank), DO IT!

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2


  2. #2
    Carbon & Ti rule
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    Nice upgrade.

  3. #3
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    Any insight into bike handling with the 70mm stem?
    Any switchbacks?

    My rip rdo came with 100 but I am shortening it up a bit and trying to decide. Leaning toward 80mm.

    Also, found I preferred my saddle moved quite a bit forward in the clamp, any opinions here?

    Thanks.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redball409 View Post
    Any insight into bike handling with the 70mm stem?
    Any switchbacks?

    My rip rdo came with 100 but I am shortening it up a bit and trying to decide. Leaning toward 80mm.

    Also, found I preferred my saddle moved quite a bit forward in the clamp, any opinions here?

    Thanks.
    The bike handled beautifully with the 70mm stem...but it also had the full 780 width handlebars (my old one was 680 to 700). I felt like I cornered high-speed corners much better than before and my weight was naturally more centered in the bike. I liked the ultra-wide handlebars, but they are ridiculous on singletrack and I was encountering brush I've never touched before! I had enough trouble passing people on singletrack in our race last week with my old bike with 680-700mm wide handelbars due to clearance issues, that I decided I couldn't leave them at 780. I cut them down last night to 740, so I'll see how it feels tomorrow. If it feels the same, I'm keeping the 70mm stem. Otherwise, I may have to go up to an 80mm.

    I have my saddle actually back in the clamp to the maximum mark on the saddle rails. I always think that saddle position fore and aft should be determined by leg/femur length not cockpit length. So if your saddle is that far forward because of the reach, then you should be able to move it back a bit and will be very happy with an 80mm stem. If it is there for you legs to fit/pedal correctly, you might feel cramped going with a shorter stem, unless you widen your bars.

    There weren't many tight switchbacks on that ride, but there will be on tomorrows ride/race. The one switchback that stood out from my ride, though, is a tight one with a steep pitch right in the middle of it. I felt like going up it was equivalent, as far as control is concerned, with my old RIP9. It was easier to accelerate up due to the lighter bike, but handling was not too different. I was thrilled when I went down it, though - it seemed WAY easier than it had ever been before, despite the center being more rutted out. Perhaps I just got lucky and hit it right, but I think the setup for the RIP RDO was better for me (Large frame, 70mm stem, wide bars) compared to my older RIP9 (Medium frame, 100mm stem, narrower bars). It certainly never felt twitchy from the short stem nor did the wide bars make it feel sluggish.

  5. #5
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    Very detailed response.
    Thank you.

  6. #6
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    I got to race the new RIP9 RDO this week. Not a very technical course in terms of rocks or drops, but a fast course with lots of bermed high-speed descending switchbacks as well as plenty of swoopy, turny, fast singletrack. Many people were racing hardtails. The bike handles SO MUCH better than my alloy RIP9 did in those types of corners and switchback situations. It may simply be the change in frame size (from Med to Large) and setup (from 100mm stem to 70mm stem; 680mm bars to 740mm bars) that I went for, but regardless I'm thrilled! I used to feel like the front end was about to wash out unless I really nailed my weight fore and aft. Now, I do not have to think about my positioning anymore and the bike just rails. It is very quick to respond to steering input, but does not feel twitchy at all. Somehow, it is more stable descending and yet seems to be telepathic when the trail gets curvy. Climbing was great before, but now is of course a bit better with 3 pounds less to haul up the trail!
    Once again, the XX1 worked beautifully and it was nice to never have to shift a front derailleur. I am running a 30t in front and never spun out, even on the doubletrack runout (flat) at the end of the race.
    I did cut the 780 bars down to 740 before the race because the singletrack is pretty narrow and it can be tough to get enough room to pass people. I'm sure it would have been even harder at 780! I did not notice the difference much having ridden it once at 780 and then once at 740, though it was a completely different type of ride. The bars are still 6 cm wider than my previous ones, but feel perfect now.

  7. #7
    Carbon & Ti rule
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    The Rip9 RDO really does work much better than the 2012 Alloy rip9 & not just because of less weight.

    I have a friend that was riding a Jet9 RDO & he is quite fit & a good climber, But does lack bike skills & braveness.

    Allan from Niner in New Zealand came for a ride with us & made the comment that he doesn't need a bike that helps his strengths but 1 to help his weakness.

    So we talked him into buying a Rip9 RDO & it has picked up his ridding a lot, just the sure footed ness of the bike has him pushing much harder.

    We went for a ride last night in the wet & mud with some nice long down hills that were rutted in places & I was quite surprised how much faster he was on a trail he had never ridden before & the conditions were not the best for riding.

    I'm looking forward to one day ridding the new Alloy Rip9 as I'm sure it to will be a big step up from the 2012 Alloy Rip9

  8. #8
    fnInt(1/x^2,x,0,1)
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    Super nice build!

    What's your saddle height, center of BB to top of saddle? I'm considering a large also, just wondering how much post I'll have sticking out too -I'm 6'.

    Thannks

  9. #9
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    Re: Upgraded alloy RIP 9 alloy to RIP 9 RDO - awesome!

    Quote Originally Posted by fleanutz View Post
    Super nice build!

    What's your saddle height, center of BB to top of saddle? I'm considering a large also, just wondering how much post I'll have sticking out too -I'm 6'.

    Thannks
    75.5cm (29.75") top of saddle (lined up above seat post clamp) from center of bottom bracket; which is 24.5 cm from the seat tube clamp.
    I'm about 1.5 cm from having the entire stationary part of the Reverb 125mm post buried in the frame.
    I'm 5'10.5" but with long legs. I'm assuming you have measurements from your current bike to compare to, but my legs are almost the same length as a more average proportioned 6 footer...unless you have short legs, large should be good. :thumbup:

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

  10. #10
    swag ho Administrator
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    I've been riding the RIP 9 for a couple of months and I wrote a review here:

    Tested: Niner 2014 RIP 9 125mm Travel Trail Bike | Mountain Bike Review
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Upgraded alloy RIP 9 alloy to RIP 9 RDO - awesome!-img_9973.jpg  

    IPA will save America

  11. #11
    Daniel the Dog
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    I would wait for V2 to pick out the bugs in the teeth of V1 RIP 9.

  12. #12
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    One of my co-workers is letting go of his L frame Rip RDO to keep his Jet. I have been on an alloy M frame rip for the past few years (gen 1 hydroformed) and loved it and had not even considered upgrading until he put his up for sale. Is the difference worth a few $$$ to upgrade? I already have a 140 fork on mine, but the thought of a little extra rear travel and weight reduction are tantalizing, particulalry since the M frame get a little small on me at times as I'm 6'. It's a subjective question I know, but his price is not letting me forget about it.

  13. #13
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    Tough to call on price comparisons.... That is up to you.
    I am 6'1" tall average proportions and 220 in weight. Never rode an aluminum Rip. Coming off a too flexy Epic in size large and into this Rip RDO in size large. Put a 140 fork on it. And it is a a big bike. Reduced stem from 100 to 70 and this helped quite a bit. I didn't build it for light weight, but went trail XT and sturdiness. I think it pedals really well for amount of travel. Impressed with rear suspension and overall handling. Really nice bike. I will weigh mine up next chance I get and let you know.
    Also, to answer question directly.... Is the upgrade in weight savings worth it?
    Probably not, but as I understand it, the bike has other positive attributes to the older Rip such as suspension and handling refinements. So don't buy just for weight, buy for total package. Hope this rambling helps.

  14. #14
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    Yeah, I know the chainstays are a touch shorter and the head angle is slackened slightly, but those aren't killing me now so I didn't take them to be game changers. What I do find occasionally is that mine is built on the sturdier side and weighs in around 31 lbs, where as his is coming in around 25-27 I think. I could probably swap my wheel set up (hadleys + flows) and drop some weight, but at that point I'm getting close to the difference in swapping bikes.

    I also can't seem to get away from replacing rear shifter cables + housings on a regular basis as the drag gets to be pretty high with all the dust in CO and the way it wraps around the frame. About 3x more often than my hardtail. Do the new frames route the deraileur cables differently?

  15. #15
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    Re: Upgraded alloy RIP 9 alloy to RIP 9 RDO - awesome!

    Quote Originally Posted by B. Rock View Post
    Yeah, I know the chainstays are a touch shorter and the head angle is slackened slightly, but those aren't killing me now so I didn't take them to be game changers. What I do find occasionally is that mine is built on the sturdier side and weighs in around 31 lbs, where as his is coming in around 25-27 I think. I could probably swap my wheel set up (hadleys + flows) and drop some weight, but at that point I'm getting close to the difference in swapping bikes.

    I also can't seem to get away from replacing rear shifter cables + housings on a regular basis as the drag gets to be pretty high with all the dust in CO and the way it wraps around the frame. About 3x more often than my hardtail. Do the new frames route the deraileur cables differently?
    Are you moving your build as is over to that frame? If so, I think you can only expect a 1.5-2 pound weight loss (especially since you are going up a frame size also). I suspect the rest of the weight difference is due to the build. I think my upgrade shaved 3.5 pounds because I went from full XT to SRAM XX1 with XTR brakes. Wheels and post were carried over...

    That said, though I originally did it to drop weight for racing, I would do it again in a heartbeat for the improved handling which is a night and day difference IMHO. I thought the alloy RIP performed very nicely...until I rode the phenomenal RDO! I imagine the large RDO will be a better fit for you too.

    So if the deal is that good, I say go for it (and I hope you notice the improved handling too).

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

  16. #16
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    Re: Upgraded alloy RIP 9 alloy to RIP 9 RDO - awesome!

    As far as cable routing is concerned. The rear deraileur cable is fully housed the entire way from the shifter to the deraileur. The housing/cable goes internal to the downtube starting at the headtube and comes out before the bottom bracket at which point it stays external along the chainstay.... At any rate, with it being fully housed, I'd imagine it will gunk up less than the alloy RIP if you have exposed cable in some areas.

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

  17. #17
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    The Rip9 RDO is a huge older upgrade over the old Rip9 alloy.

    I'm 6 ft & ride a Lge & it fits great.

    There is a good drop in weight over the old Rip9 alloy, but just looking at the weight savings would be selling the Rip9 RDO short.

    The pedal platform is much better, The frame is stiffer & rails corners so well & is just so smooth for a bike that pedals so well.

  18. #18
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    Sounds good, and thanks for the feedback!

  19. #19
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    you should try M sized RIP. I'm 6'2" tall and came from an L frame, tried the M sized and loved the handling. Niner recommends if your are in between sizes, get the size down.
    Just my opinion though.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by LostDog99 View Post
    you should try M sized RIP. I'm 6'2" tall and came from an L frame, tried the M sized and loved the handling. Niner recommends if your are in between sizes, get the size down.
    Just my opinion though.
    Really ?

    What seat height do you run ?

    Most seat posts are to short for me to be able to get my seat height high enough on a med.

    Also I find it much easyer to keep the front wheel on the ground with the Lge on really steep climbs.

    I'd love to see your setup.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by muzzanic View Post
    Really ?

    What seat height do you run ?

    Most seat posts are to short for me to be able to get my seat height high enough on a med.

    Also I find it much easyer to keep the front wheel on the ground with the Lge on really steep climbs.

    I'd love to see your setup.
    This is what it would look like.. On the Niner carbon seat post, it is at the no. 4 level. didn't measure it though. On my experience, a smaller bike is easier on the climbs too.


  22. #22
    Carbon & Ti rule
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    Mmmm
    That's a very long stem & for 6'2 that seat seams low.

    I run a 50mm stem & wide bars on my Rip9 RDO, On the steep climbs I find having the weight of the wheel, fork, front brake further forward.

    The bars to front of seat on your bike looks longer than on my Lge.



    Quote Originally Posted by LostDog99 View Post
    This is what it would look like.. On the Niner carbon seat post, it is at the no. 4 level. didn't measure it though. On my experience, a smaller bike is easier on the climbs too.


  23. #23
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    it's a 100mm stem, i can opt for a bit shorter stem and move my saddle backwards but so far this is ok for me. . the seat height is just perfect for me. almost straight legs when seated. give Medium frames a try and you will be surprised how agile you will be if you come from a Large frame. It's more fun.

  24. #24
    Always Learning
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    Quote Originally Posted by LostDog99 View Post
    Let's talk about what really matters. I've got more room for my water bottle on the XL...

    P1010066
    The 14 warmest years have all occurred in the 16 years since 1997.

  25. #25
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    LOL. Nice one. mine fits nice and tight. so works well for me.

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