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  1. #51
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    Interesting thread and civil discussion. I think most of us have a hard time articulating as well as understanding leverage curves and the differences between a single pivot and a DW-link and how that translates to differences in the ride. LcNuvue's comments are spot-on as well as Stripes who goes more by feel. After all, it's all about the ride and both are good. So, I'll add mine.

    My first Ventana was a 4" El Salt which I eventually upgraded to 5" rockers. When that broke I got the first iteration of the El Ciclone. When that broke I got the next one. I'm sure the newer pivot location has helped but in all cases, the suspension bobbed and suffered from pedal strikes. Some of that was the RP23 with mid-stroke wallow. Getting it Pushed helped but not nearly as much as going coil.

    Loved the active suspension on the downhills but all three Ventana iterations did not corner nearly as well as the 2010 5-Spot that I'm on (160 mm Lyrik). Some of it is head angle but some is bb ht as well as frame design. In a call to Sherwood he told me he designed his bikes to be fun and didn't worry about the other stuff. Interestingly enough, he wasn't big on coil shocks but the ride was indeed fun.

    In contrast, the 5-spot is a much better climber but it's not as plush on the downhill. I would describe it as more nimble, firm, and it goes where you point it. Both are stiff bikes. Pedal feedback on the 5-spot is not noticeable with 2x10 unless I'm running a 24t chainring. Rear shock is either a Pushed Monarch Plus or MX tune coil. Would I go back to Ventana? Probably not but the bikes are beautiful and the customer support, like Turner, is the best.

    Also, to echo Stripes comment regarding Pivot I didn't like the implementation on the Mach5. Felt way too much like a xc race bike but I haven't tried a Firebird or the 5.7. I rode an Ibis Mojo SL for a day and I would consider that or the HD if I was still in the market for another DW-link bike. Very interesting, how they are all so different.
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  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockman View Post
    Interesting thread and civil discussion. I think most of us have a hard time articulating as well as understanding leverage curves and the differences between a single pivot and a DW-link and how that translates to differences in the ride. LcNuvue's comments are spot-on as well as Stripes who goes more by feel. After all, it's all about the ride and both are good. So, I'll add mine.

    My first Ventana was a 4" El Salt which I eventually upgraded to 5" rockers. When that broke I got the first iteration of the El Ciclone. When that broke I got the next one. I'm sure the newer pivot location has helped but in all cases, the suspension bobbed and suffered from pedal strikes. Some of that was the RP23 with mid-stroke wallow. Getting it Pushed helped but not nearly as much as going coil.

    Loved the active suspension on the downhills but all three Ventana iterations did not corner nearly as well as the 2010 5-Spot that I'm on (160 mm Lyrik). Some of it is head angle but some is bb ht as well as frame design. In a call to Sherwood he told me he designed his bikes to be fun and didn't worry about the other stuff. Interestingly enough, he wasn't big on coil shocks but the ride was indeed fun.

    In contrast, the 5-spot is a much better climber but it's not as plush on the downhill. I would describe it as more nimble, firm, and it goes where you point it. Both are stiff bikes. Pedal feedback on the 5-spot is not noticeable with 2x10 unless I'm running a 24t chainring. Rear shock is either a Pushed Monarch Plus or MX tune coil. Would I go back to Ventana? Probably not but the bikes are beautiful and the customer support, like Turner, is the best.

    Also, to echo Stripes comment regarding Pivot I didn't like the implementation on the Mach5. Felt way too much like a xc race bike but I haven't tried a Firebird or the 5.7. I rode an Ibis Mojo SL for a day and I would consider that or the HD if I was still in the market for another DW-link bike. Very interesting, how they are all so different.
    I'm also glad it's a civil discussion.

    The RP23 and CTD have not felt right to me on any bike. The X-5, the new Ciclon, and even the Mojo HD with the large volume reducer in it. On the Ventanas, it just wallows mid-stroke and on the HD it just blows through the travel midstroke. The large volume spacer helps a bit, but that shock still doesn't feel right. Running a Push'd RP23 in the past was an improvement, but that shock still sucked. I will be replacing it with a Monarch Plus on the Mojo HD. If it weren't for the high BB, I would have kept my X-5.

    Both the Ventana X-5 and Ciclon ran great with either the Monarch Plus or the CCDB (that was the best for that bike). The CCDB was the best though, because you could really dial out a lot of the bob and the bike would feel awesome in it. I wish I could run coil (without a piggyback) on the small HD, but it's limited space on that frame. Then again, I was pretty limited on the small new Ciclon too.
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  3. #53
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    I wish I had the CCDB, but that bugger is EXPENSIVE!!!!!

  4. #54
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    I ride an X-5 and have never ridden a DW, VPP, Maestro or any mini link type bike for that matter. In the group I ride with, I'm usually in the front or just off the front on the DH and just off the front on the climbs. Would a mini link get me to the front of the pack and keep me there?

    Kind of joking, but would it make a difference?
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  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by LncNuvue View Post
    I kind of walked into this forum and took a huge #2 on the sofa. Sorry about that guys.
    I don't think so, You stated it an honest talk about the differences in suspension designs. A lot of good experience posted here. I too had a 2007 Ciclon.........

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  6. #56
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    I'm really happy this discussion has taken off and I wish there was more of this kind of dialogue on the forums. Regardless, given that I'm the one who asked the leading question, I think it's fair to report that I have officially ordered a new 27.5" Turner Flux. This is largely a matter of my outstanding experience with the folks at Turner and my love of the DW link suspension. I will also say that I intend to immediately replace the Fox CTD Evo shock with a tuned Monarch RT3 that I've ordered for the task from Suspension Experts in Asheville, NC. I liked the Spot with an RP23 ok, but my experience with it echoes those cited here. True love came in the form of a Pushed RT3 on the Spot, so I'm going that way on the Flux immediately. I'm migrating parts off the Spot, including a Pushed 2010 Fox 32 float 140mm 26" fork with straight steerer tube that I've been running a Pacenti 27.5" TL28 rim and Neo Moto on for a couple of years. The A-C is 510mm on that fork as it is on the 120mm 27.5" fork that is OEM on the new Flux, so rather than possibly go backwards on performance, I've ordered the frame only and will keep the fork I like right now.

    Thanks to all of you for the frank comments, both publicly here, in PMs, or on the phone. It's apparent that both brands make great bikes and we all have our own experiences and ideas about what works or doesn't work for us individually. As it should be.

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  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    So question for you since I don't get suspension designs (again, this is what I feel):
    Most suspensions seem to be designed around the middle ring (32T). I found running a 30T 1x10 setup on the Ventana was the best to get rid of the bounce. Does running larger rings also impact the amount of chain growth a DW link gets?

    It seems to be the case, because running that same configuration (30T front, 11-36 rear) on both the Mojo and the Ventana seemed to get rid of the bounce on the Ventana, and I've never felt the chain growth on my Mojo with that configuration.

    If I ran a 28T on the Ventana, I felt like all it wanted to do was bounce and I was back to playing stupid suspension tricks (shimmed shock, lots of compression, etc). The 28T felt better on my knees/hips, but it was misery on the Ventana for uphill ride quality (bounce). Forget riding it in the 32/22 double I had: it was just too much bounce and I was tiring myself out fighting the bike (masher, not a spinner, and it's not changing anytime soon).

    I run a 38/26 double now on the HD and I still do not get any noticable-to-me chain growth. And I can climb in it without any propedal being engaged.

    It seems that Shimano and SRAM get this, because they've all but done away with the 22T and 24T granny gear to get rid of these type of characteristics (supposedly better pedaling, but I can't find a 24T granny gear for a Shimano double and that would be better than a 26T for me). Note I haven't tried the XX1 or X01 to know how those are configured; I'm talking strictly from the double rings.
    Yah, generally speaking - most suspension systems are optimized for the middle ring. The older generation Ventana's werent really optimized for anything. The pivot was lower than a 22t granny. So even in the granny gear, the older ventanas still squated a whole lot.

    They've since raised the pivot quite a bit -so you're going to get some good antisquat in the granny gear (if you run one) and decent antisquat in the middle ring.

    If mountain bikers decide that 3 rings up front isnt necessary, designing good pedallin suspension bikes will become simpler - and this will eventually allow us to focus on other things, like suspension activity under braking for example.

    I stil like my granny gear, though for things like $2 hill and the climb up to Star Lake.
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  8. #58
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    DW link comparison?

    Quote Originally Posted by Porch View Post
    My .02: forget about BB height. You will notice more pedal strikes for the first few rides, and once you adapt the only thing you'll notice is how much better your bike handles.
    Well said and very true, IMO.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sock Monkey View Post
    Did you use the regular double barrel or the double barrel air shock?

    I am considering upgrading the shock on my new V
    On my X-5, I ran the regular CCDB since the air wasn't available then. On the 2nd gen Ciclon, I also ran the CCDB only, the air version wouldn't fit since I ride a small frame. Not sure what size frame you ride, but you may want to check and make sure it fits before investing in it.
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  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Yah, generally speaking - most suspension systems are optimized for the middle ring. The older generation Ventana's werent really optimized for anything. The pivot was lower than a 22t granny. So even in the granny gear, the older ventanas still squated a whole lot.

    They've since raised the pivot quite a bit -so you're going to get some good antisquat in the granny gear (if you run one) and decent antisquat in the middle ring.

    If mountain bikers decide that 3 rings up front isnt necessary, designing good pedallin suspension bikes will become simpler - and this will eventually allow us to focus on other things, like suspension activity under braking for example.

    I stil like my granny gear, though for things like $2 hill and the climb up to Star Lake.
    Great thread. I'm tuning in.

    Are the DW link designs also tuned into, or affected by, differing chain rings (differing chain angles)? I suspect so. Chris Cocallis makes a great point in an interview where he alluded to how proper suspension function is somewhat dependent on the chain moving from ring to ring. When the trail goes up, riders move to the granny, which changes the chain angle and will typically induce an increased measure of anti-squat.

    CCDB... I was stoked to hear CC has added an "on the fly" lever to their DB, that allow you to bump up the LSC. A big plus for SP and FSR designs. What I've found however is that on many shocks that do this the amount of LSC is way overkill. I spoke to CC and the response I got was along the lines of the LSC knob, when thrown, will radically increase the amount of LSC on the system...

    ...Too bad. Unless you've got a really bad suspension design, you only need a slight increase in LSC to dial out squat on climbs !!! Like the old RP3s I liked how one could "pre-dial" the amount of increased compression added when you flipped the lever.


    I am baffled by how many shock designs, both fork and rear, implement a "Trail" or "Climb" setting that adds so much LSC or "thresh hold" you go so far beyond dialing out squat - you also dial out the suspension!

    Kind of "too much of a good thing" affair.


    IMO, what would really get me to pull the trigger on a Ventana would be a CCDB that did allow you to pre-dial two (or three) different LSC presets. Then, throw in a bar mounted, on the fly lever - yes, that would be the ticket.

    For riders where there are extended uphills and downhills I think it is a different game - compared to riders that are forced to deal with rapid succession, steep, chunky ups and downs.

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldHouseMan View Post
    I ride an X-5 and have never ridden a DW, VPP, Maestro or any mini link type bike for that matter. In the group I ride with, I'm usually in the front or just off the front on the DH and just off the front on the climbs. Would a mini link get me to the front of the pack and keep me there?

    Kind of joking, but would it make a difference?
    OHM, When I went from my Ciclon to my Spot I did get faster all around, up and down, cornering, etc, and was hitting low speed steep features down with much more confidence. The light tune on the shock really helped in the low speed tech sections, reduced that OTB feeling with shock not extending or stiffening when braking, and opened up new lines for my riding. I progressed a lot on the Ciclon but when I moved to the Spot my riding advanced as a faster pace. I don't see how you couldn't go faster on a Burner on the DH with that geometry and larger wheelsize compared to the older X5. And on the climbs you'd be more efficient or at least not reaching for a propedal lever and you'll use less body english to keep the front down saving energy. The Ciclon did make me really strong since though you have to be on point when things get steep.

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by LncNuvue View Post
    And on the climbs you'd be more efficient or at least not reaching for a propedal lever and you'll use less body english to keep the front down saving energy. The Ciclon did make me really strong since though you have to be on point when things get steep.
    That's true. On my Ciclon I used an adjustable U-turn Pike and would lower it to 120mm or so to keep it from wandering on anything steep. I had no problem running a 170 mm Lyrik on the 2010 Spot but changed it out to 160 mm because it felt a bit better balanced.
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  13. #63
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    I have a CCDB coil. I can dial out any bob, but with just a touch of inch worming on hardpack its perfect for all around trail riding, super d and enduro racing.

    I can't notice any difference in the brake jack dept. And that's from riding and racing six inch frames for 15 years. First was a single pivot / linkage 1998 Rocky Mountain DH TO. Then three FSR Titus Quasi Motos and two Ciclons.

    The only major breakthrough has been in shock technology. Ill never forget when I got my Vanilla RC back from push in '05 or maybe it was 04.

    I've never really rode a DW bike outside a parking lot. The sensation was that of riding on the bike, not in the bike.
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  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    I've never really rode a DW bike outside a parking lot. The sensation was that of riding on the bike, not in the bike.
    Definitely in it - maybe it's my setup giving that feeling though. Low stack up front, 33% sag, Fox 36@160. Climbs like a scalded goat on crack and rails the DH with telepathic precision

    DW link comparison?-lance-ant-killer-web.jpg

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    Need to qualify my e-riding commentary with something.

  15. #65
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    Looking at those pics, I was thinking you are near me (well not right now, I'm in Iceland) I thought Hurkey? Art Smith? And then I saw the last pic. The DW I rode was a Ibis HD i tried in the parking lot at Ashland while waiting for start timesd It accelerated like a mother but if it were mine I'd need a lot more sag. Also, I can't be the only one who has jumped on someone's bike, even another Ciclon and wondered "Wtf?? How can he ride with this set up." Not that I know anything. Lol.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    Looking at those pics, I was thinking you are near me (well not right now, I'm in Iceland) I thought Hurkey? Art Smith? And then I saw the last pic. The DW I rode was a Ibis HD and it accelerated like a mother but if it were mine I'd need a lot more sag. Also, I can't be the only one who has jumped on someone's bike, even another Ciclon and wondered "Wtf?? How can he ride with this set up." Not that I know anything. Lol.
    I'm the Palm Springs desert area and those are my local trails (hurkey, art, hahn, goats, etc). The overhead shot is the waterfall on National trail at south mountain. Aren't you near big bear or somewhere over that way?

    DW does need to be setup right to feel best and it takes some rides to get used to the feel of it on the most techy climbs. I've always enjoyed a little more sag, a low compression tune with medium rebound. Yep, I get where you're coming from - lots of imagination is needed when trying someone else bike out.

  17. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    Looking at those pics, I was thinking you are near me (well not right now, I'm in Iceland) I thought Hurkey? Art Smith? And then I saw the last pic. The DW I rode was a Ibis HD i tried in the parking lot at Ashland while waiting for start timesd It accelerated like a mother but if it were mine I'd need a lot more sag. Also, I can't be the only one who has jumped on someone's bike, even another Ciclon and wondered "Wtf?? How can he ride with this set up." Not that I know anything. Lol.
    The Ibis and the Pivot accelerate very quickly because the DW link stiffens up in the top of the stroke, which is what makes it accelerate nicely. The Pivots stiffen up even more than the Ibis, which gives them a really harsh feeling.

    The acceleration the first thing I noticed about it, and I absolutely love the fact it takes no time to get it up to speed. The Ventanas did not accelerate well, no matter which version. I was constantly changing out tires to try to fix that, and it didn't matter: the bike did not accelerate. The Ventanas were great at speed, but for slow speed or coming out of a stop, they didn't perform the way I wanted.

    Quote Originally Posted by LncNuvue View Post
    DW does need to be setup right to feel best and it takes some rides to get used to the feel of it on the most techy climbs. I've always enjoyed a little more sag, a low compression tune with medium rebound. Yep, I get where you're coming from - lots of imagination is needed when trying someone else bike out.
    This. You really have to spend a few rides tinkering with the Ibis to get it to feel right. Mine feels somewhat right with 30% sag and a large volume reducer on the CTD. I'm sure it'll feel much better once I get a Monarch Plus in it though.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LncNuvue View Post
    Chuck, pedal kickback or feedback is when you're pedaling over an obstacle or feature and the rear wheel wants to stop or reverse the pedals. It's usually due to chain growth when the suspension compresses. The older VPP designs suffered pretty badly from this. The DW Link on my Spot has minimal to no pedal kickback or feedback. To ever feel it you would need to be in the granny ring and very deep in the travel while hitting an object just the right way.
    Maybe consider 3 other bikes along with that Anthem: new Turner Flux, Santa Cruz Solo and Ventana Alpino. All are 650b.
    Thanks loads for the description of pedal feedback. This has happened to me a few times when test riding and it makes going up some technical climbs very challenging. I just never knew what was happening or what it was called. As far as checking out the Flux, Solo and Alpino I would only replace the Bastardo with a carbon frame bike. So that excludes the Alpino and Flux and I don't personally care for Santa Cruz. I just feel Santa Cruz charge way to much for their products. What I really want is Yeti to come out with a 4" travel 27.5' FS travel bike but I think I will be waiting a long time for that bike to come out. Thanks again.

  19. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    The Ibis and the Pivot accelerate very quickly because the DW link stiffens up in the top of the stroke, which is what makes it accelerate nicely. The Pivots stiffen up even more than the Ibis, which gives them a really harsh feeling.

    The acceleration the first thing I noticed about it, and I absolutely love the fact it takes no time to get it up to speed. The Ventanas did not accelerate well, no matter which version. I was constantly changing out tires to try to fix that, and it didn't matter: the bike did not accelerate. The Ventanas were great at speed, but for slow speed or coming out of a stop, they didn't perform the way I wanted.



    This. You really have to spend a few rides tinkering with the Ibis to get it to feel right. Mine feels somewhat right with 30% sag and a large volume reducer on the CTD. I'm sure it'll feel much better once I get a Monarch Plus in it though.
    I agree. My DW fluxes accelerated great. But overall, i still like the ride of the Ciclon better.

  20. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fachiro1 View Post
    I agree. My DW fluxes accelerated great. But overall, i still like the ride of the Ciclon better.
    Awesome! Stick with what you like then Different pedal strokes for different folks.

    As long as you're happy with your ride that's all that's important.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fachiro1 View Post
    I agree. My DW fluxes accelerated great. But overall, i still like the ride of the Ciclon better.
    Can't really compare a 100m travel Flux to an El Ciclon. Different animals.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    I've never really rode a DW bike outside a parking lot. The sensation was that of riding on the bike, not in the bike.
    Huh, I have the opposite feeling, but that's because the sag needs to be set to 30-35% and the rebound damping (at least on the Mojos) needs to have more than the Ventanas. When I didn't have a lot of rebound damping on my Mojo HD, it felt like it was rising out of the travel at times (not sure if that makes sense, just the feel of it).

    But around a parking lot, the DW link doesn't really feel like anything. It doesn't justify the experience because it's not as active as the single pivot.
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  23. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post

    But around a parking lot, the DW link doesn't really feel like anything. It doesn't justify the experience because it's not as active as the single pivot.
    That's exactly what I felt about my Flux. Though it was shorter in travel, it had a very solid feeling on the flats and riding fireroads. Though it didnt feel as plush as the Ciclon when it got rocky, it did pedal like a champ.

    With the Ciclon, all I have to do is look down at the rockers and they'll be moving with jst about every pedal stroke. But I never felt like it's bobbng like a pogo stick. I just did a 2000 foot fire road climb with a few rocky sections, and I spent soe time looking at the rockers/shock, suspension. I try to do most of my climbing when I can in the middle ring, which is a 32. My largest cog is a 34. This fireroad has an average grade af 15% with a max of about 35%, so I try to do most of the climbing with the 32/34, but when I get tired out, I will go to the granny, which is a 22. What I observed was that in the 32/34 or 22/34, with a semi smooth natural cadence, I was getting very little bob. It woyld move over the rocks and dips, but one the flat or hardpack areas, it didn't bob as I imagined it would. Now, if I deliberately bounce up and down, then , yeah, it would pogo a bit.

    Downhill, it just soaks up just about everything, including a few 2-3 foot drops and a few jumps. I'm sorry but at my age and weight, I won't attempt anything that would potentially hospitalize me! The rear always feels solid.

    What I really find impressive is the LACK of noise when riding. Both up and down, the suspension is quiest and the shadow der. also works as designed.

  24. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by LncNuvue View Post
    Can't really compare a 100m travel Flux to an El Ciclon. Different animals.

    Sure we can, I own/owned both so I can compare the suspension designs. We are comparing suspension designs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fachiro1 View Post
    That's exactly what I felt about my Flux. Though it was shorter in travel, it had a very solid feeling on the flats and riding fireroads. Though it didnt feel as plush as the Ciclon when it got rocky, it did pedal like a champ.
    Of course it's not going to feel plush like your Ciclon! You're talking 100mm travel vs 140/150mm, like LncNuvue said. I would agree with him that you're not making an fair comparison.

    With the Ciclon, all I have to do is look down at the rockers and they'll be moving with jst about every pedal stroke. But I never felt like it's bobbng like a pogo stick. I just did a 2000 foot fire road climb with a few rocky sections, and I spent soe time looking at the rockers/shock, suspension. I try to do most of my climbing when I can in the middle ring, which is a 32. My largest cog is a 34. This fireroad has an average grade af 15% with a max of about 35%, so I try to do most of the climbing with the 32/34, but when I get tired out, I will go to the granny, which is a 22. What I observed was that in the 32/34 or 22/34, with a semi smooth natural cadence, I was getting very little bob. It woyld move over the rocks and dips, but one the flat or hardpack areas, it didn't bob as I imagined it would. Now, if I deliberately bounce up and down, then , yeah, it would pogo a bit.
    You're also riding the Path edition right? That's really different geo than standard Ventana geos. One of the things I really did not like about the 2nd gen Ciclon was the slacker seat tube angle--it put my legs at a weird angle, and I just could not get comfortable on that bike, no matter how much I tried. Slacking out the head angle didn't help, because it was the seat tube angle and long reach (even despite it's being shortened 10mm for me), it was still too much forward lean for me.

    But if you have the Path edition, it has a lot more slack head angle and more steeper seat tube angle, and that allows you to get over the front end better on climbs.

    If you did most of your climbs in a gear lower than 30T, I'm sure you'd feel very differently. The best gearing for the Ventana for me was the 30T single ring and the 11-36 cassette (I would have preferred more gears in the back at the time, but I wasn't going to invest in XX1 or a general lee cassette mod).

    Downhill, it just soaks up just about everything, including a few 2-3 foot drops and a few jumps. I'm sorry but at my age and weight, I won't attempt anything that would potentially hospitalize me! The rear always feels solid.

    What I really find impressive is the LACK of noise when riding. Both up and down, the suspension is quiest and the shadow der. also works as designed.
    The Ventanas ALWAYS felt great downhill. Never an issue with how they eat up bumps. The X-5 felt better to me than the 2nd gen Ciclon on the DH. It was just solid and could plow easily. It was corners were the X-5 didn't shine as well as the 2nd gen Ciclon for me. The Ibis has no problems eating up the same bumps as the Ventanas though, but it just takes longer to get the rear dialed in.

    I hear you on taking unnecessary risks, but if you're afraid of getting hospitalized, don't mountain bike. Even the easiest ride could put you in the hospital. Just a fact of riding.

    Both my Ventana and Mojo HD are quiet when riding. Never an issue with either bike.
    MTB4Her.com: mountain bike site for women, by women

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