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Thread: El Ray

  1. #1
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    El Ray

    Is this a good pedaling, trail bike? I'm coming off a 07' Stumpy Pro with brain shock which I really loved, but would like to try a 29er. My south florida trails lack any real mountains so most of my climbing is short, steep and somewhat technical. The rest of the trail is flat, fast, with some tight single track thrown in here and there .

    Will I be happy with this frame?

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    If the terrain is mostly flat and sandy the El Padrino might be a better choice. The El Rey gets better the nastier the terrain. It is a dream going down hill. Nothing gets in its way. I love mine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Killrop
    If the terrain is mostly flat and sandy the El Padrino might be a better choice. The El Rey gets better the nastier the terrain. It is a dream going down hill. Nothing gets in its way. I love mine.
    My biggest concern is the lack of a Horst Link causing pedal bob. My last 4 bikes where HL bikes, so not having one concerns me, but I know Venatna has been building frames a while so they must have figured something out.

    So minimal pedal bob and it stays active during hard braking? No brake jack?

    Thanks for any input guys! As I'm sure you all know buying a new bike is a arduous task. SO many choices.

    I really like the looks of the Orange El Ray, I just don't want it to be all show and no go. The El Padrino doesn't have any travel and I'm old! 4" travel is the magic number for travel down here. The RIP 9 is probably my other option, however both Giant, and Trek/GF have a great price point bike at $3k.

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    The only way you can avoid pedal bob is to get a hard tail. On my Rey I just run in Pro Pedal mode when the course is flatter or ride my Padrino hard tail. I wouldn't think you would even need a FS bike in Florida. Unfortunately you can't usually try these out before you buy. For an allround trail bike its tough to beat the El Rey. They have some of the best attention to detail and I like the fact that I can call the guy who made it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Killrop
    The only way you can avoid pedal bob is to get a hard tail. On my Rey I just run in Pro Pedal mode when the course is flatter or ride my Padrino hard tail. I wouldn't think you would even need a FS bike in Florida. Unfortunately you can't usually try these out before you buy. For an allround trail bike its tough to beat the El Rey. They have some of the best attention to detail and I like the fact that I can call the guy who made it.
    You would be surprised by how technical some of the trails are down here. Lots of rocks and roots require suspension especially when your back gets over 40.

    Will Florida ever be a biking Mecca probably not, but if you want a vacation where you can bring the family to the beach, and you sneak off and hit some fun trails, it is a good spot. There are 4 good trails within 30 minutes of Miami and Ft. Lauderdale. Tampa/Orlando/Ocala has about 4-5 really nice trails as well.

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    Considering my back just turned 40 I'm going to go ahead and agree with you.

    One thing for sure, a 29'er will eat the sand up... plus they will roll over a gator like a log pile!!!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by fafaafooie
    Will I be happy with this frame?
    The El Rey pedals really well and requires very little propedal IMO. The active suspension on the Ventanas will give you great traction and stability in the rocks and roots. The El Rey does have a bigger, slower handling feel to it though. If you're inbetween sizes go for the smaller size and consider running a shorter stem (70) and wider bars. You will love the bike.

  8. #8
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    Nothing will beat the El Rey when you're pedaling up some nasty rooted trails, that's where the Ventana's shine. The more technical the better.

    If you were to compare a Brain equipted HL bike to an El Rey on an uphill paved climb, the brain bike would beat it hands down. But throw in some nasty rocks and roots ant the Ventana comes alive.
    www.velocitybicycles.comWhere customers become friends, not simply a dollar sign.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Internal14
    Nothing will beat the El Rey when you're pedaling up some nasty rooted trails, that's where the Ventana's shine. The more technical the better.

    If you were to compare a Brain equipted HL bike to an El Rey on an uphill paved climb, the brain bike would beat it hands down. But throw in some nasty rocks and roots ant the Ventana comes alive.

    I was told from a place that sells Ventana that technically speaking all Ventana's are single pivot. This being the case, which I never would have thought has me now rethinking. While I am no techno geek, I think the single pivot, not matter how well executed, has it's limitations as a good peddler. If any of you guys want to let me test drive your rig, the beer is on me, and you know you want to escape the cold and come visit sunny Boca Raton.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by fafaafooie
    Ventana's are single pivot..... has it's limitations as a good peddler..
    Welcome back to circa 1998 and getting hung up over the location of one pivot, and forgetting about the total package.

    I am an unabashed Ventanaphile, loyalist, fanboi, whatever so yes I'm biased, I know. So don't take this wrong, but if you can step back from your FSR love and answer this question. IF, if the FSR pivot makes such a superior pedaler....Why add a full time lockout shock (BRAIN)?
    -Aaron G.

    "Before D.W., "anti-squat" was referred to as pedal feedback."

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ciclistagonzo
    IF, if the FSR pivot makes such a superior pedaler....Why add a full time lockout shock (BRAIN)?
    Because Specialized acknowledges pedal bob can be a bad thing.

    Ventana has sat on their laurels so long they have bed sores.
    Stupid, but sometimes witty. Occasionally brilliant. Slow and fat though.

    Specialized sucks dong

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles
    Because Specialized acknowledges pedal bob can be a bad thing.

    Ventana has sat on their laurels so long they have bed sores.
    Woooohooo! I drew out the resident whack job troll!

    Now back to your original progamming.....
    -Aaron G.

    "Before D.W., "anti-squat" was referred to as pedal feedback."

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ciclistagonzo
    Woooohooo! I drew out the resident whack job troll!

    Now back to your original progamming.....
    "resident whack job troll"

    Please show me where I have used such ad hominems against you and your similarly minded head in the sand fanbois?

    Have you read my recent interviews with American Manufacturers?

    Ventana holds a singular position of poor repute with his contemporaries for being so backwards with his designs.
    Stupid, but sometimes witty. Occasionally brilliant. Slow and fat though.

    Specialized sucks dong

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ciclistagonzo
    Welcome back to circa 1998 and getting hung up over the location of one pivot, and forgetting about the total package.

    I am an unabashed Ventanaphile, loyalist, fanboi, whatever so yes I'm biased, I know. So don't take this wrong, but if you can step back from your FSR love and answer this question. IF, if the FSR pivot makes such a superior pedaler....Why add a full time lockout shock (BRAIN)?
    I'm not bashing Ventana, I just have never ridden one. The sales guy I spoke with wasn't trying to talk me out of it either, he was just explaining what it was compared to other designs.

    Until I ride one I am going to be a skeptic. I felt the same way about Fisher until I demoed a Hifi pro. I was expecting to not like it, but it was actually really nice.

    The Brain works awesome. All it does is set the "platform threshold" from firm to lose. Think of it as Propedal with 10 clicks instead of 1 or 2

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by fafaafooie
    I'm not bashing Ventana, I just have never ridden one. The sales guy I spoke with wasn't trying to talk me out of it either, he was just explaining what it was compared to other designs.

    Until I ride one I am going to be a skeptic. I felt the same way about Fisher until I demoed a Hifi pro. I was expecting to not like it, but it was actually really nice.

    The Brain works awesome. All it does is set the "platform threshold" from firm to lose. Think of it as Propedal with 10 clicks instead of 1 or 2
    What are you looking for in a bike?

    What kinds of trails do you ride?

    What is your experience level?

    Almost all the ventanaphiles are really, really fat. And really, really slow. And really, really old.
    '
    They simply don't know what a good bike is supposed to be.

    Ventana's are made well - it's just that their design is more than 10 years old and very, very dated.
    Stupid, but sometimes witty. Occasionally brilliant. Slow and fat though.

    Specialized sucks dong

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles
    What are you looking for in a bike?

    What kinds of trails do you ride?

    What is your experience level?

    Almost all the ventanaphiles are really, really fat. And really, really slow. And really, really old.
    '
    They simply don't know what a good bike is supposed to be.

    Ventana's are made well - it's just that their design is more than 10 years old and very, very dated.

    Here we go again. Talk about ad hominems have seen some of the pictures of Turner, IBIS and Pivot riders they're not exactly fit and athletic. So what's your point! Are you mental or one of those fellas that thinks a little to highly of yourself (Figjam)?



    .

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles
    What are you looking for in a bike?

    What kinds of trails do you ride?

    What is your experience level?

    Almost all the ventanaphiles are really, really fat. And really, really slow. And really, really old.
    '
    They simply don't know what a good bike is supposed to be.

    Ventana's are made well - it's just that their design is more than 10 years old and very, very dated.
    The evolution of mountain bike design is nothing but a series of fads. Some fads stick, most don't. Some designs just work and are timeless. There is no real technological advancement in bike design. To suggest so just means you are spending too much time online and not enough time riding. Carbon vs Al, 29 vs 26. None of it really matters. Ride what you enjoy. Just a couple years ago I witnessed Ned race an aluminum 26'er hard tail and finish 4th overall. No fancy technology, just a fast rider. In the end that's all that really matters. Oh yeah, he's old too.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles
    What are you looking for in a bike?

    What kinds of trails do you ride?

    What is your experience level?

    Almost all the ventanaphiles are really, really fat. And really, really slow. And really, really old.
    '
    They simply don't know what a good bike is supposed to be.

    Ventana's are made well - it's just that their design is more than 10 years old and very, very dated.
    I have been riding since my first Rockhopper Comp in 1984 or 85, I forget what year, but it had Biopace cranks, look that up youngsters. I've have had many mountain bikes over the years... Blur, 575, Truth, 4-Banger, Sts carbon I-drive, Switchblade, 3 Stumpy FSR, Custom Strong SS, and an Epic. I have also ridden countless other friends bikes as well so I have a pretty good idea what a good pedaling trail bike should be. I've ridden 4bar, URT, I-drive, ICT, VPP, DW, Single pivot, and the Moots single mini shock thingy, I'm sure it has a fancy name.

    I want a mostly bob free 4"-4.5" travel trail bike. I am not a racer, I am an old school trail rider from back in the day. I'm not fast, I'm not slow.

    Once again I'm not here to bash Ventana. However the sales person I spoke with basically said the same thing as stated above in that Ventana is an old design done "very well" and if I was considerably over 200lbs it would be a great choice as they are very sturdy. He also said the owner was a stand up guy who backs up his work.

    Is being 44 and 195lbs old and fat?? I might go with old, but I am in no way fat.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by fafaafooie
    Is being 44 and 195lbs old and fat?? I might go with old, but I am in no way fat.
    It really depends on your height If you're below 6 foot then you may be considered overweight but if you're 6'3" then you're studly.

  20. #20
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    the ventana may be an older design, but Sherwood and gang have come as close to perfecting a particular design as any other manufacture has done with theirs. What they have constructed is a very solid, easy to maintain, fantastic riding mountain bike. Some bike manufactures intend to keep up with trends trying their best to keep things fresh and some decide to try their best to perfect, and that's what Ventana does / did with their line of suspension bikes.

    I have a Ventana, and it rocks at climbing and decending. It clearly does not suck as iheart has implied. And guess what....i'm not old nor am i fat.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbiker4life
    It really depends on your height If you're below 6 foot then you may be considered overweight but if you're 6'3" then you're studly.
    I'm only 5' 11" but I am still not fat. Lets say I could play running back if I could reverse time 25 years or so. I got me some beefy gams.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by fafaafooie
    I'm not bashing Ventana, I just have never ridden one. The sales guy I spoke with wasn't trying to talk me out of it either, he was just explaining what it was compared to other designs.

    Until I ride one I am going to be a skeptic. I felt the same way about Fisher until I demoed a Hifi pro. I was expecting to not like it, but it was actually really nice.

    The Brain works awesome. All it does is set the "platform threshold" from firm to lose. Think of it as Propedal with 10 clicks instead of 1 or 2
    I knew you weren't I was just pointing out there's more to it than just a single pivot location. AND the if you like the Fisher, you'll probably like the V as well, the technology is similar, but IMHO better executed on the V. (Of course I'm biased).

    I found that pre -2010 Fox Shox with ProPedal really set a firm pedaling platform with 4"-5" Suspension kinetics on V's. I am currently running a 2010 RP23 with Boost Valve that is VERY plush and almost hyperactive even in PP2. (Krispy @ Go-Ride felt the same thing about 2010+ Fox's). If you want a more firm platform, getting RP23 with LESS boost Valve pressure would make it a firmer platform I believe. (Mine is set at 175)

    Noting you're later post, at 5'11" and Nearly 200, your stout and can probably put some serious torque down, so the stronger chassis on V's would be a benifit to you as well.

    Good luck with whatever you decide..
    -Aaron G.

    "Before D.W., "anti-squat" was referred to as pedal feedback."

  23. #23
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    I'm 5'11", 230lbs and look like Ray Lewis. Simply determining fitness based on BMI is not totally accurate. The second fastest person on my high school football team was a 240lb lineman who went on to play for Penn State. Is a 300lb lineman less fit than a road racer? One could argue that point, although I will concede that most with a "normal" BMI have less morbidity and mortality than over weight and obese individuals. I have a Tallboy, 429, and a El Rey. The Rey doesn't pedal quite as well, but the other bikes have minor short comings too. I'm a masher and the local trails are more XC than AM locally so now I spend most of my time on my 429. El Rey positives - stiff, reliable, made in America, great CS, good mud clearance and once again, reliable. Slight short comings - chain stay length which is not a big deal too me and minor bob.
    Last edited by DrDon; 12-16-2010 at 10:50 AM.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbiker4life
    It really depends on your height If you're below 6 foot then you may be considered overweight but if you're 6'3" then you're studly.
    ROCK N' ROLL....! Thats me! 195 / 6'3" - no kidding! But I am over 40.
    .
    "...when your ride is nearly over, it seems to have lasted but an instant..."


    Stuff

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Killrop
    Ride what you enjoy.


    I can agree with that ! TIG.
    " A way to a deep freedom " - Tarja

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