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  1. #1
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    Zeus frame design flaw?

    i just read that in a Dirt Rag review of the Zeus that the rear tire at full travel hits the seatube. i'm really bummed & troubled to hear this is still happening w/ Ventanas. i've owned a Terremoto for over 3 years & that is the one problem i have w/ the ride character of the bike. when i first got it, & had it happen i ended up doing the RP23 space reducer fix, which reduced it from happening too often to a rare acceptable event. that fix doesn't reduce the overall travel of the frame, just the too easy to go through all the travel problem. my rear tire actually hits the rear deraileur brazeon. that brazeon has now been lowered on the seatube for the lower pull action of the derailure, putting it out of the way of the tire under full compression. so, why is the frame capable of hitting the seatube still? it seems like something Sherwood would just not allow to still be a problem.

    i haven't read the review, just a thread on the 650 forum mentioning the article, so i'm unaware of the tire/rim combo & obviously unaware of the tire/rim combo stats the frame was designed/tested w/. how 'bout you, Ciclistagonzo? do you know a few details here?

    the Zeus is one of the very few bikes i'll be considering to buy in the future. i didn't foresee having to figure this trait into the decision.
    breezy shade

  2. #2
    Ultra Ventanaphile
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    Which thread, haven't seen the review or heard of this issue either.
    -Aaron G.

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

  3. #3
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    I had this problem at the beginning when running my Zeus at 160mm travel with a big fat Nobby Nic 2.35 at the back. My problem was that I did not use enough air in the Float CTD and this was solved by both adding 5 psi (which preserved full travel) and also switching to the 140mm travel position, which is plenty for my riding. Since then, I have never had any tire rub. I spoke with Sherwood about it and, if I remember correctly, he said that getting the shock Pushed to increase compression damping would solve the problem.

  4. #4
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    i misstated that it was on the 650 forum. it's on the Knolly forum under the thread Dirt Rag Reviews Endorphin.
    breezy shade

  5. #5
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    Not going to go look it up right now. I think it was the first XL built, and Ventana is looking into the issue. Magazine staff said it will stay parked.

    Read this while waiting to be put under for a medical procedure, memory may be foggy to what the article actually said.

  6. #6
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    The issue has to do with the size tire the test rider was using Wild Grip'R 2.25. The test rider said that it wasn't a really big tire, but that's what he thought was the issue (or so I gathered). The tire does not look very large to me, but I'm not familiar with Michelin bike tires.

    The test rider doesn't say which shock setting the bike is in (140mm or 160mm). Looking at the photo, it looks like it's in 160mm travel.

    There's a photo in the second page of the layout showing the shock fully compressed and the rear wheel touching the seat tube. The shock position looks the same.

    Issue is from the print issue of Dirt Rag, 10.1.13, pages 68-69. I couldn't find a version online, because it looks like it's print only.
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  7. #7
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    That is a shame. It shouldn't be an issue in either 140 or 160 travel. The frame is not cheap and shouldn't have that type of issue. But luckily they do all of their stuff in house so they should figure this out pretty quickly. The Zeus is still on my shortlist, but I will be keeping my eye out to see if the issue gets fixed, or to see what the problem was.

  8. #8
    Just A Mountain Biker.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    Issue is from the print issue of Dirt Rag, 10.1.13, pages 68-69. I couldn't find a version online, because it looks like it's print only.
    OUCH for Ventana. Guess that really puts the Zeus off the list for me. I read it on my digital subscription to DR.

    What really struck me as odd as it starts out as a love fest, speaking of the 25 years parallels of the two companies (DR & Ventana), and how many bikes they have tested over the years, and how great they have all been - and then spent the second half of the article trashing them (in my view). Wonder if they didn't get the response they wanted from VUSA? You would think with that kind of purported relationship, they would have shelved this review until a resolution was reached, and then made mention of it in the review but also covered the way it was addressed. As it stands now, if it is ever resolved, it may get a mention somewhere in an upcoming edition, but nowhere near as visible as a 2 page spread in the reviews section of the 'rag.

    Just seems problematic to me, can't imagine Sherwood is pleased.
    26" isn't dead, it just got FAT



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    The issue has to do with the size tire the test rider was using Wild Grip'R 2.25.
    I don't know about you, but on a 160mm travel frame, 2.25" tire seems small. If they were trying to fit an especially large 2.5" in there I could see an unforseen issue, but 2.25? ****, even I want to see this tire now!
    26" isn't dead, it just got FAT



  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by blaklabl View Post
    I don't know about you, but on a 160mm travel frame, 2.25" tire seems small. If they were trying to fit an especially large 2.5" in there I could see an unforseen issue, but 2.25? ****, even I want to see this tire now!
    Me too. The Zeus is a AM maybe even an Enduro capable bike. If you can't fit a tire that is 2.25 then whats the use.

  11. #11
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    I have had my Zeus 1 year exactly riding year round in SoCal. Only 1 time did I have any rub and it was due to not enough pressure in shock and, a few pounds I had put on with injuries. This was on a 2.5 foot drop I do regularly and it has happened only once. I ride with a 2.25 Ardent on rear with TL28 hoops always in 160mm travel mode Front/rear. I call user error on the review. If anything I wish I could get more travel out of the bike. 1 year riding the bike with correct settings vs. what appears to be incorrect one time review. I have several options of bikes to ride and the Zeus is the one I always end up riding so I ride the crap out of it. No issues for me but I don't write a blurb in Bike Rag so take it for what it is worth.
    "Set the gearshift for the high gear of your soul".

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by blaklabl View Post
    I don't know about you, but on a 160mm travel frame, 2.25" tire seems small. If they were trying to fit an especially large 2.5" in there I could see an unforseen issue, but 2.25? ****, even I want to see this tire now!
    I run pretty high volume tires (Specialized Butcher SX 2.3 in the front, and usually another 2.25 or 2.3 tire in the back), so yeah, that would definitely have been a deal breaker to me.

    The tire didn't look that big to be honest. I'm not an engineer, but Sherwood said it's due to the size of the frame. I ride small frames, but I would still be wary until a fix is publicly announced.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phishin Paul View Post
    I have had my Zeus 1 year exactly riding year round in SoCal. Only 1 time did I have any rub and it was due to not enough pressure in shock and, a few pounds I had put on with injuries. This was on a 2.5 foot drop I do regularly and it has happened only once. I ride with a 2.25 Ardent on rear with TL28 hoops always in 160mm travel mode Front/rear. I call user error on the review. If anything I wish I could get more travel out of the bike. 1 year riding the bike with correct settings vs. what appears to be incorrect one time review. I have several options of bikes to ride and the Zeus is the one I always end up riding so I ride the crap out of it. No issues for me but I don't write a blurb in Bike Rag so take it for what it is worth.
    Why not write for Dirt Rag about this? They'll publish submitted works, more than the other trade rags.

    To be honest, they do need a clarification if not a correction on this if they didn't have the shock set right. What bothers me about this is they don't state the recommended sag on the Zeus (and if they ran it at that), the travel setting (the Zeus is 140mm or 160mm, and unless you know Ventana it's not easy to know), or if they try another rear shock and have the same problem. I hate the stock Fox CTD, especially without the volume reducers, because it'll blow through the travel too quickly.
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  14. #14
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    It's hard to see how user error could cause tire rubbing at full compression, unless the frame has been modified or the shock isn't the correct i2i and stroke. Bottom out is bottom out, regardless of rider weight or shock sag. Ideally, the shock should bottom out before the tire contacts the seat tube.

  15. #15
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    It's not an issue of a volume reducer or not running the shock with enough pressure. You should be able to completely compress the rear end with zero pressure without the tire making contact. That is absolutely a design flaw. That said, Ventana is an awesome company and I'm sure they'll sort things out quickly and take great care of their customers
    The glass is twice as large as it needs to be

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by andy f View Post
    It's not an issue of a volume reducer or not running the shock with enough pressure. You should be able to completely compress the rear end with zero pressure without the tire making contact. That is absolutely a design flaw. That said, Ventana is an awesome company and I'm sure they'll sort things out quickly and take great care of their customers
    Ventana will definitely take care of their customers; they always do. The issue would be more prospective customers reading the review. They'll probably shy away, which is bad. Lots of damage control to do.
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  17. #17
    orthonormal
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    Ventana will definitely take care of their customers; they always do. The issue would be more prospective customers reading the review. They'll probably shy away, which is bad. Lots of damage control to do.
    Agreed, but some here are blaming the reviewer for faulty shock set up. That's BS.
    The glass is twice as large as it needs to be

  18. #18
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    More article details

    I was wondering when comments on this article would show up. I don't own a Zeus (still on an X-5), but this seems like a major design flaw. There should not be any "standard" size tire that can hit the frame under any conditions. In the lower right corner of the photo page, the shock is deflated and the tire is resting against the down tube. The article also stated, "After riding for the photo shoot the paint has completely scrubbed off the frame."

    Sherwood did not do himself a favor with his written response:
    When we get the test bike back from Dirt Rag we will thoroughly check that frame out and see if there is a problem with that particular test bike (turns out your test bike is the one and only 21" sized Zeus we have built so far) and will implement any adjustments to our production frames if necessary at that time. Like the early days with the 29" wheels the 27.5" wheel sized market place is very dynamic right now with new tires entering the market almost daily. As an in-house builder we assess new product and make appropriate adjustments to our frames as needed at almost real time.
    The article makes it sound like the frame was supplied by Ventana and built out using popular parts, none of which should have caused the problem.

    Based on the number of 27.5" bikes in the market now, it is not that immature of a technology, so the response doesn't sound right. Judging by the other comments in this thread, this is not something unknown or unique to this specific 21" frame. To my ear, Sherwood's response doesn't reflect the high level of customer service and customer satisfaction that Ventana has built over the years.

    Too bad.
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  19. #19
    fai
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    My wife has been using a 16"Zeus for over a year now with a 2.35 Hans Dampf tyres getting full travel without any tyre frame contact with a RP23 shock. I have recently started using a 19" one and use the same tyres but fitted the DHX air that I was using on an El Ciclon. I have been using the shocks full stroke, the bike has been used at a downhill site I did all the big drops. I have not had a problem with any tyre frame contact with my bike set up as it is. I did have this issue on an X5 but a shock retune sorted that. I am interested in finding out what other Zeus owners have come across this tyre frame contact.
    AJR

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheapWhine View Post
    I was wondering when comments on this article would show up. I don't own a Zeus (still on an X-5), but this seems like a major design flaw. There should not be any "standard" size tire that can hit the frame under any conditions. In the lower right corner of the photo page, the shock is deflated and the tire is resting against the down tube. The article also stated, "After riding for the photo shoot the paint has completely scrubbed off the frame."

    Sherwood did not do himself a favor with his written response:
    When we get the test bike back from Dirt Rag we will thoroughly check that frame out and see if there is a problem with that particular test bike (turns out your test bike is the one and only 21" sized Zeus we have built so far) and will implement any adjustments to our production frames if necessary at that time. Like the early days with the 29" wheels the 27.5" wheel sized market place is very dynamic right now with new tires entering the market almost daily. As an in-house builder we assess new product and make appropriate adjustments to our frames as needed at almost real time.
    The article makes it sound like the frame was supplied by Ventana and built out using popular parts, none of which should have caused the problem.

    Based on the number of 27.5" bikes in the market now, it is not that immature of a technology, so the response doesn't sound right. Judging by the other comments in this thread, this is not something unknown or unique to this specific 21" frame. To my ear, Sherwood's response doesn't reflect the high level of customer service and customer satisfaction that Ventana has built over the years.

    Too bad.
    Although I don't find Sherwood's comment to be that odd, I do believe he has to go into damage control mode and quickly deal with this. I still keep the Zeus on the list of maybe to buy next bikes, but this issue has to be resolved or at least an answer as to why this has happened.
    Was the paint scrubbed off on the back off the seat tube? Because if that was the case than we aren't talking about an occasional hit but indeed about something that is a major issue.
    But I also read a lot people here saying they don't have this problem on their Zeus. So I'm even more keen on finding out what was wrong here?

  21. #21
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    For those who don't have tire rubbing, please post which travel setting you're using.

  22. #22
    fai
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    My wife and I both use the 160mm travel setting.
    AJR

  23. #23
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    140 mm, no tire rub with a Nobby Nic 2.35.

  24. #24
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    Ok, thanks. If there's no tire rub at bottom-out in the 160mm setting with a 2.35 Hans Dampf, I personally wouldn't be thinking "design flaw," nor would I worry about it.

  25. #25
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    Well thats good to know but I would still like to know why they had this issue.

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