Got it narrowed down to four.... or five.- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Got it narrowed down to four.... or five.

    Shopping for a new 29er: 135-150mm travel. So many good ones out there. I've done quite a bit of research, thrown a leg over all of them (except the Smash) but have done only one good long test ride on the Fezzari and a two or three day multiple ride test on the Fugitive ( but not LT). I'm sure it's been done but would like to hear comparisons, pros/cons, opinions, first hand impressions etc.

    I'm looking for a bike that adds some overall downhill capability to my 27.5 Endorphin without giving up much in the smoother, up/down riding I do on a daily basis. Durability, customer support, and brand identity/part-of-a-family feeling are important to me.

    Here are my top four (or five) contenders in no particular order:

    Ibis Ripmo

    Knolly Fugitive LT

    Evil Offering

    Fezzari La Sal Peak

    Guerilla Gravity Smash (Just added this one)
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  2. #2
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    Well, you haven't ridden the Smash or the Fugitive LT, so I'd eliminate those at least until you ride them. Then I'd just pick the one that rides the best. The other stuff is too subjective. They're good companies and all are durable. I don't know what part-of-a-family means, but you must have your own sense of that.

    My son has a Ripmo and I've ridden it. Great bike, obviously and I do like their take on DW link.

  3. #3
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    Fugitive Lt for the win. Love mine.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    Well, you haven't ridden the Smash or the Fugitive LT, so I'd eliminate those at least until you ride them.
    I'd think the Fugitive LT would be a pretty safe bet even without riding it, given the time KRob has spent on other Knollys including the regular Fugitive. Durability, customer support and the brand stoke/family thing are all first-rate there too.

    The Knolly would be heavier, but probably also cheaper with an equivalent build than the carbon bikes. Are you looking at an off-the-shelf kit or building it up from a frame?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    Well, you haven't ridden the Smash or the Fugitive LT, so I'd eliminate those at least until you ride them. Then I'd just pick the one that rides the best. The other stuff is too subjective. They're good companies and all are durable. I don't know what part-of-a-family means, but you must have your own sense of that.

    My son has a Ripmo and I've ridden it. Great bike, obviously and I do like their take on DW link.
    I have done a spin around the trailhead ride on the LT but, yeah, I do need to get some significant time on the Fugitive LT and have opportunities where I could do that. I'm a Knolly guy and if they already had a carbon Fugitive LT out or the newer longer travel 29er out I probably wouldn't be here asking about options.

    I'm a little concerned about the weight of the Fugitive but until I ride it for an extended test I can't say if that's going to be a deal breaker. I love the close knit Knolly family. Love the sense of belonging to a group of like minded owners. Love that it's a small company with passionate attention to detail and building the strongest, longest lasting bikes on the planet.

    Having said all that, I'm very intrigued with this new crop of mid-long travel carbon 29ers that are flooding the market.

    Yes, the Ripmo does check all the boxes and I also like their take on the DW link.
    Last edited by KRob; 1 Week Ago at 06:01 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    I have done a spin around the trailhead ride of the LT but, yeah, I do need to get some significant time on the Fugitive LT and have opportunities where I could do that. I'm a Knolly guy and if they already had a carbon Fugitive LT out or the newer longer travel 29er out I probably wouldn't be here asking about options.

    I'm a little concerned about the weight of the Fugitive but until I ride it for an extended test I can't say if that's going to be a deal breaker. I love the close knit Knolly family. Love the sense of belonging to a group of like minded owners. Love that it's a small company with passionate attention to detail and building the strongest, longest lasting bikes on the planet.

    Having said all that, I'm very intrigued with this new crop of mid-long travel carbon 29ers that are flooding the market.

    Yes, the Ripmo does check all the boxes and I also like their take on the DW link.
    I was also concerned about the weight of the Fugitive LT but I have to say my that I donít notice the 34.26 GX build at all. Bike climbs and decision awesome . The think climbs 10x better than my Carbon Warden.

  7. #7
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    The GG Smash has blown me away. I was asked by a friend recently on the trail how I am liking it and my answer was "I can't think of a bike I'd rather be riding."

    Climbs very well for its DH capability. I've cranked all day alpine climbs without a second thought while still ripping the descents. Durable, amazing GG customer support and owner's group. Made in the US at a reasonable price.

    Easy to mount a couple water bottles and a frame bag. I haven't worn a pack/hip bag when riding the Smash even on long 6hrs summer rides. I love that.

    Best handling bike I've owned and best suspension of all the various bikes I've tried. I rarely think about the Smash when I am on the trail. It's just always doing what it's supposed to and I can enjoy the shred.

    When it came to ordering the GF a new bike it really wasn't a question she wanted her own Smash. She'll have a carbon Smash shortly.

    FWIW - I ordered a Smash sight unseen and figured if I didn't love it I would sell it at the end of the summer. I'm super glad I did. GG has an extensive list of owners that'll let you demo their bikes. Give them a call and I wouldn't be surprised if you can throw a leg over one not too far from where you live.

    The PB Smash review is pretty bang on based on my experience.

    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/review...ity-smash.html

    The new carbon bikes are very similar to the 2018 metal models. Changes are incremental to refine the ride.
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  8. #8
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    I'm riding a metal GG Smash as well. I also live in the PNW and enjoy long climbs and multi-thousand foot descent on narrow ribbons of tacky brown loam through lush rain forests. I also regularly enjoy 3-4' drops at places like Oregon's Blackrock, Alsea Falls and Washington's Tiger Mtn.

    I'm a happy camper aboard my very capable Smash.

    I'd describe my suspension as plush (11.6 shock, 160mm PUSH-coiled Pike fork) and handling as confidence inspiring. A friend has a Knolly and I recognize the passion and family loyalty there -- if you get a Guerrilla Gravity bike you'll discover a similar dynamic. GG's customer service rocks and their bikes are regarded. Rightly so.

    If I couldn't have a GG Smash, the Ripmo would be right up there on my alternate list. Your list is a good one.
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  9. #9
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    I was between the Offering and the Ripmo but at my height 5'9" and right between a m/l and I always struggled with Ibis sizing with the mediums feeling a little small and didn't want the longer wheelbase for my type of riding with the large. I went with an Offering and it's a blast to ride and no regrets but if the Ibis sizing would have worked out better for me there was just so many more positives with the Rip as I'm sure you already know. Let's see bigger tire clearance, better dropper length, able to run a smaller chain ring, lighter frame weight, a little cheaper, and a longer warranty. As well as a great company to buy from although so far Evil has been great and like I said just a blast to ride, love the Delta suspension.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post
    I'd think the Fugitive LT would be a pretty safe bet even without riding it, given the time KRob has spent on other Knollys including the regular Fugitive. Durability, customer support and the brand stoke/family thing are all first-rate there too.

    The Knolly would be heavier, but probably also cheaper with an equivalent build than the carbon bikes. Are you looking at an off-the-shelf kit or building it up from a frame?
    For sure. The Knolly will stay on the list and honestly is the standard by which all the rest will be judged in my book. My concern with the Fugitive LT is the weight. I rode the regular Fugitive all over Hurricane/St. George last year at the Knollyfest with a fairly light all air (DPX2 shock, 34 Float) build and didn't notice the weight at all. In fact just picking it up it felt to be about the same weight as my Endorphin which is 30 lbs. But this year at the Knollyfest everyone had LT's built heavy duty with coil shocks etc and while I didn't ride one, they felt hefty lifting them up into the truck and onto the racks... like 35 lbs. That's gotta kill some of the liveliness and playfulness I love about the Endorphin.
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  11. #11
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    Is the new Hightower going to make the list?

  12. #12
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    Value wise the Fezzari has got to be hard to beat and the #'s are very progressive. Given you did a big ride on it and it made your list...care to share your thoughts?

    Generally speaking these new 29'ers are awesome. Smooth, rough, DH, they do everything well. I'd echo vicb's thoughts in that I can't think of another bike I'd rather own except I'm on a Rallon. All these bikes are good but personality I'd lean toward the lighter weight for big back country days.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    I was between the Offering and the Ripmo but at my height 5'9" and right between a m/l and I always struggled with Ibis sizing with the mediums feeling a little small and didn't want the longer wheelbase for my type of riding with the large. I went with an Offering and it's a blast to ride and no regrets but if the Ibis sizing would have worked out better for me there was just so many more positives with the Rip as I'm sure you already know. Let's see bigger tire clearance, better dropper length, able to run a smaller chain ring, lighter frame weight, a little cheaper, and a longer warranty. As well as a great company to buy from although so far Evil has been great and like I said just a blast to ride, love the Delta suspension.
    That's about my only reservation with the Ripmo. The size large is a little more conservatively sized than some of the others. The size large felt pretty good just spinning around parking lot at the shop, but I can't help but think I might like the more stretched out geo of the others.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    Is the new Hightower going to make the list?
    I just saw the blurb about the new HT. Haven't really looked into it yet. I have ridden the HTLT and it is a nice bike for sure. Probably the only reason I don't have it on the list is because its geo is a little dated and it's from a bigger company.... although I know customer service is excellent from Santa Cruz and if I were to go with a bigger company it would be SC or Pivot.... not likely Giant or Trek or Specialized. I have no complaints at all with my 5010 ownership experience.
    Last edited by KRob; 1 Day Ago at 11:55 AM.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by WHALENARD View Post
    Value wise the Fezzari has got to be hard to beat and the #'s are very progressive. Given you did a big ride on it and it made your list...care to share your thoughts?
    I really liked the Fezzari. Pedaled incredibly well. Almost magical the way it handles techy, ledgy climbs. Great descender but not a plow bike by any stretch. More playful and active. The size L fit me perfect..... and like you said the price is almost impossible to beat. I haven't heard anything bad about Fezzari as far as durability and customer support but something about the price makes me wonder if it will withstand 4-5 years of constant 5-6 day per week rides in rough terrain with very spotty maintenance (I'm terrible) like my Knolly does. Ha ha.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    My concern with the Fugitive LT is the weight. I rode the regular Fugitive all over Hurricane/St. George last year at the Knollyfest with a fairly light all air (DPX2 shock, 34 Float) build and didn't notice the weight at all. In fact just picking it up it felt to be about the same weight as my Endorphin which is 30 lbs. But this year at the Knollyfest everyone had LT's built heavy duty with coil shocks etc and while I didn't ride one, they felt hefty lifting them up into the truck and onto the racks... like 35 lbs. That's gotta kill some of the liveliness and playfulness I love about the Endorphin.
    As much as I don't like to sound like a weight weenie, that's exactly how I feel too. The DPX2 and a fork like the MRP Ribbon Air would be a good in-between with the Fugitive LT. All other things being equal there's still going to be a bit of a weight increase over the Endo with the bigger wheels and slightly heavier frame, but perhaps not enough to be of any concern on the trail?

    Even though Santa Cruz may seem like a "big" brand compared to Knolly or Evil, it's pretty hard to look past the new Hightower IMO if you're shopping in this category [with a suitable budget!].

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    Delay gratification and ride lots of stuff. YMMV, but I found most bikes are really good these days. I ended up loving one - a Trek - I would not have considered in the past. After that an extended trip in CO with some bike renting let me check out even more brands and models. It all proved what's really most important - your bike engine. It was also really great to learn just now much you get diminishing returns as you spend.

    Even though I went for a bike with less travel than my last one, I'm not going to say that's what others should do. Go rent bikes and go to bike demos. Have fun.
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    Well, with your list I don't think you're going to go wrong. I was all hot and bothered for the new Yeti SB130 and took it out on a demo. It was the most comfortably climbing LT bike I've ever ridden for sure but it was kind of underwhelming for me going DH from a "fun factor" angle so I demo'd the Ripmo that the shop had in stock. While the Yeti was more comfortable, the Ripmo climbed even faster when the terrain got steeper....and it was so much more FUN going down. I was setting personal PR's up and down on the Ripmo...and now have one coming on Friday.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post


    The GG Smash has blown me away. I was asked by a friend recently on the trail how I am liking it and my answer was "I can't think of a bike I'd rather be riding."
    Thanks for your impressions on the Smash, Vik. I've been following your Smash thread over on the GG forum and value your input. That's one of the reasons it's on my list. Gotta call Matt at GG and arrange a demo. Looking at the sizing recommendation guide on their site, it looks like I'm a pretty solid Size 3. Not sure if I'd feel more comfortable with a longer 50mm stem in the Short mode or a 40mm stem in the Long mode but it's cool you can make those adjustments. Plus I love the modular frame concept where you can mix and match things to create a totally different bike. The very reasonable pricing for carbon that is American made is enticing as well.
    Last edited by KRob; 1 Week Ago at 04:14 PM.
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  20. #20
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    Got it narrowed down to four.... or five.

    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    Is the new Hightower going to make the list?
    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post

    Even though Santa Cruz may seem like a "big" brand compared to Knolly or Evil, it's pretty hard to look past the new Hightower IMO if you're shopping in this category [with a suitable budget!].
    Itís on the list now. Just read the first ride reviews from Bike and MTBR. Seems to tick all the boxes and has all the needed updates I was looking for.

    https://www.bikemag.com/gear/mountai...ruz-hightower/

    https://reviews.mtbr.com/2020-santa-...weight-details
    Last edited by KRob; 1 Week Ago at 09:28 AM.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    Well, with your list I don't think you're going to go wrong. I was all hot and bothered for the new Yeti SB130 and took it out on a demo. It was the most comfortably climbing LT bike I've ever ridden for sure but it was kind of underwhelming for me going DH from a "fun factor" angle so I demo'd the Ripmo that the shop had in stock. While the Yeti was more comfortable, the Ripmo climbed even faster when the terrain got steeper....and it was so much more FUN going down. I was setting personal PR's up and down on the Ripmo...and now have one coming on Friday.
    Nice! Congrats on the new Ripmo. I was similarly excited for the SB130 but I think I want a little more travel than that and the SB150 from all accounts is skewed more to the DH/Enduro side of things than other 150-160 bikes. Plus Yeti's are expensive and have a rep for breaking.

    I got the same impression from short rides on the Rallon and the Pivot Firebird....more bike than I need most of the time.
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  22. #22
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    KRob I'm going to be ordering a new Smash in the next few days, size 3, so if you can wait the approx 8 weeks that it will take to get here you are more than welcome to take a little parking lot spin on it the next time you're in Vegas or I'm up there.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by EugeneTheJeep View Post
    KRob I'm going to be ordering a new Smash in the next few days, size 3, so if you can wait the approx 8 weeks that it will take to get here you are more than welcome to take a little parking lot spin on it the next time you're in Vegas or I'm up there.
    Congrats Eugene! And thanks for the offer. I'll be in touch.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Nice! Congrats on the new Ripmo. I was similarly excited for the SB130 but I think I want a little more travel than that and the SB150 from all accounts is skewed more to the DH/Enduro side of things than other 150-160 bikes. Plus Yeti's are expensive and have a rep for breaking.

    I got the same impression from short rides on the Rallon and the Pivot Firebird....more bike than I need most of the time.
    A friend demo'd the 150 after I rode the 130 so I rode that as well and it climbed almost as good as the 130 but it went DH thru chunky, steep terrain better than any other bike I've ever ridden.
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  25. #25
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    I kind of have experience with a good amount of your list, my last 3 bikes have been a Wreckoning, a Smash (aluminum), and a Fugitive LT. I've written a few comparisons between the Wreckoning and the Smash in the GG subforum, and the Smash and the Fug LT in the Knolly forum, but feel free to PM me if you want any more info on these/comparisons

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    A friend demo'd the 150 after I rode the 130 so I rode that as well and it climbed almost as good as the 130 but it went DH thru chunky, steep terrain better than any other bike I've ever ridden.
    Interesting. Did the SB150 feel overly long or unwieldy on tighter, slower tech or switchbacks?
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    Quote Originally Posted by rpearce1475 View Post
    I kind of have experience with a good amount of your list, my last 3 bikes have been a Wreckoning, a Smash (aluminum), and a Fugitive LT. I've written a few comparisons between the Wreckoning and the Smash in the GG subforum, and the Smash and the Fug LT in the Knolly forum, but feel free to PM me if you want any more info on these/comparisons
    Thanks! I'll check those out. Do you mind if I copy and past some of your responses over here for the sake of completeness and to help those who might stumble onto this thread with the same questions?
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Interesting. Did the SB150 feel overly long or unwieldy on tighter, slower tech or switchbacks?
    To be honest, we didn't ride anywhere "slower"....we were at Greer Ranch in SoCal but yes, I felt the length on one tighter, chicane section but it still skirted thru w/o a blip. If I lived in Whistler or within an hour of a similar terrain park, I'd have bought the 150 instead of a Ripmo. My buddy ordered one and it will be in saturday.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Thanks! I'll check those out. Do you mind if I copy and past some of your responses over here for the sake of completeness and to help those who might stumble onto this thread with the same questions?
    Have at it!

  30. #30
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    The smuggler is worthy of your little list
    shredable up and expecially down, some family style as well

    Orbea occam should be included as well, Its hard not to like that little shredder. orbea makes really high quality rides!

    sb136 $$$ is pretty sweet(could try a rear cc inline coil?), also have a sb150. definetly more chunk factor with the 150(coiled - makes the difference feel more pronounced imo)

    Anything you get will be a winner. almost went knolly before a sentinel... got tired of waiting and didnt want to deal with the weight. having trouble selling the warden carbon put me off a little bit as well. that said, a friend bought the one i had ordered and it rips. heavy yes, but its hidden well once rolling.

    will be watching to see what you choose.
    cheers


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    I would look hard at the ripmo and 130. I ended up with the ripmo. The 130 climbs slightly better than the ripmo, but the ripmo was more composed on the rough descents, and climbed almost as well. The ripmo is my go to ride, and am looking at a 150,firebird 29 or Rallon for my enduro bike.

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    Just to cloud things a bit more... Iíve been a Knolly guy for years (currently on a Carbon Warden), love it when I am back home in NVan/ VanIsle but not so much in my current Colorado location.

    Currently deciding between a Spot Mayhem and Revel Rascal. Not a ton of rider reviews, but have enjoyed my demo time on them. Iíd put them between the ĎSit high in the travel, poppyí DW Ibis, and the Ďsit deeper, glued to the ground, plush 4x4 Knollyí.

  33. #33
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    There is a funny thing that happens when you add a 29er to your quiver...

    I still had my Endorphin and Warden when I built up the Fugitive LT. I liked the Fugitive immediately in terms of comfort on bike, climbing and high speed descending. What took some time to get used to was the slightly muted feel of the front end of the bike in corners and lifting the front wheel. (larger wheels/1"longer wheelbase)

    Once I got used to that, the Fugitive became a grade A grin inducer.

    I had intended on keeping one of my 27.5 Knolly's, but found that I had a difficult time transitioning with the 29er. The Warden and Endorphin started to feel sketchy in comparison to the Fugitive. Like you, I am an experienced rider getting up in years and am liking the little extra confidence the Fugitive offers. If I can push the bike harder with a lower chance of crashing, I am willing to give up just a little playfulness.

    Saying that, I did some back to back laps on smoother low challenge trail near home between the Endo and Fugit. I figured the Endorphin would be the easy pick for these trails. To my surprise, I was happy on either bike.

    So, the Endorphin and Warden are gone and the Fugitive LT is currently my one bike quiver. It handles the big bike stuff like the Warden and climbs as well or better than the Endorphin.

    BTW: I ride the LT in slack mode. I have found that I like the seat angle and bb height better in that mode. It puts less pressure on my hands and rails high speed corners.

    2c.
    Last edited by bubba13; 1 Week Ago at 10:15 PM.
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  34. #34
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    I won't recommend my bike/brand based on your requirements. But I will say, having an integrated system for tools and spares as made riding life SO much better for me. Just grab the bike, air the tires, and ride (coil front and rear for me too). Tools, tube, etc all neatly stored on the bike in a way that you never think about them until you need them.

    Has nothing to do with climbing and descending. But being upset that your tube fell off somewhere back on the trail or forgetting your tool in you car sucks.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by SHAHEEB View Post
    The smuggler is worthy of your little list
    shredable up and expecially down, some family style as well

    Orbea occam should be included as well, Its hard not to like that little shredder. orbea makes really high quality rides!

    sb136 $$$ is pretty sweet(could try a rear cc inline coil?), also have a sb150. definetly more chunk factor with the 150(coiled - makes the difference feel more pronounced imo)

    Anything you get will be a winner. almost went knolly before a sentinel... got tired of waiting and didnt want to deal with the weight. having trouble selling the warden carbon put me off a little bit as well. that said, a friend bought the one i had ordered and it rips. heavy yes, but its hidden well once rolling.

    will be watching to see what you choose.
    cheers
    Heard a lot of good things about the Smuggler. Due to its progressive and aggressive geometry I know it punches well above its weight class, but still feel like 120mm rear travel doesnít get me into the more-capable-than-the-Endorphin category I am shooting for.

    Did you consider the Sentinel?


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  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by SHAHEEB View Post

    sb136 $$$ is pretty sweet(could try a rear cc inline coil?),
    I did see something about this beefed up SB130 Lunch Ride. Iíd forgotten about it. Hereís a brief write up from PB. Sounds like a contender, but yeah, pretty pricey.

    https://m.pinkbike.com/news/yeti-sb1...tter-2019.html



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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by NS-NV View Post

    Currently deciding between a Spot Mayhem and Revel Rascal.
    Iíve been interested in the new Revel Rascal. Probably should try and ride one before I decide. I like that it licenses Canfield suspension technology and the group behind its development is highly respected.

    A little shorter travel than I wanted, but itís in the ballpark. Consider the waters clouded. Thanks for your input.


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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by bubba13 View Post
    There is a funny thing that happens when you add a 29er to your quiver...

    I still had my Endorphin and Warden when I built up the Fugitive LT. I liked the Fugitive immediately in terms of comfort on bike, climbing and high speed descending. What took some time to get used to was the slightly muted feel of the front end of the bike in corners and lifting the front wheel. (larger wheels/1"longer wheelbase)

    Once I got used to that, the Fugitive became a grade A grin inducer.
    Thatís one of the reasons Iíd avoided doing full demos on some of the 29ers on my list before. I knew it would make me long for a 29er before I was ready to buy. I know that feeling you speak of and I can forget it and continue to enjoy my Endorphin if I just say no to test rides, Ha ha.

    Now that Iím getting closer to pulling the trigger Iím gathering more information to help me whittle the list down.

    Did you go with an air shock on your Fugitive LT or coil, bubba? And approximately what does your bike weigh?


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  39. #39
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    Bible did some revel comparisons looks good and a different ride than the norm. Worthy contender

    Sentinel Carbon was a blast. Very fun bike. Liked it w a 150 fork as well

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Thatís one of the reasons Iíd avoided doing full demos on some of the 29ers on my list before. I knew it would make me long for a 29er before I was ready to buy. I know that feeling you speak of and I can forget it and continue to enjoy my Endorphin if I just say no.

    Now that Iím getting closer to pulling the trigger Iím gathering more information to help me whittle the list down.

    Did you go with an air shock on your Fugitive LT or coil, bubba? And approximately what does your bike weigh?


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    I'm still not sure what my Fugitive LT weighs. For me, it has not been an issue at over 200lbs. rider weight. I purchased the frame with the DPX2 shock and have been happy with that so far. Future plans include having a 2nd shock which will probably be a coil. Also may upgrade the Fox 36 from Fit4 to Grip2 cartridge. (staying with 51mm offset)

    After thinking about it some, I think I have narrowed down why I had difficulty transitioning between the Fugitive and the 27.5's. The Fugitive is much easier to tell what is going on at the front of the bike. The zone where you feel centered on the bike seems to be larger and more forgiving. Once my brain acclimated to the Fugitive, cornering actually feels and is faster, which I didn't think would be possible. I did not have this impression on my initial rides.
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    FWIW - I have no issues swapping between my 29er Smash and 275er Endo summer to winter. I don't enjoy swapping bikes back and forth from ride to ride, but when the seasons change it only takes an hour to get dialled back in on the fresh bike. The Endo rides as well as it always has and the difference in feel due to wheel size is kind of nice when you ride the same trails all the time.
    Safe riding,

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  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    I really liked the Fezzari. Pedaled incredibly well. Almost magical the way it handles techy, ledgy climbs. Great descender but not a plow bike by any stretch. More playful and active. The size L fit me perfect..... and like you said the price is almost impossible to beat. I haven't heard anything bad about Fezzari as far as durability and customer support but something about the price makes me wonder if it will withstand 4-5 years of constant 5-6 day per week rides in rough terrain with very spotty maintenance (I'm terrible) like my Knolly does. Ha ha.
    Perceived value is just that, perceived value. I work in the jewelry industry, and raising the prices on product is often what is needed to make a slow seller sell. Crazy. I'd agree that the La Sal Peak is a new bike, and doesn't have a track record regarding breakage, good or bad, but I wasn't worried that what I paid for it meant that is was poorly made, just that they can still make their money without a full retail markup. It's not the lightest carbon frame out there, is stiff, rides great and the build quality looks high on mine, I think it'll last. Lifetime warranty if I manage to break it.

    So many great bikes out now, any one of them on your list is a winner.

  43. #43
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    True. I thought the build quality looked good and everything felt tight on the bike I demoed. I guess I was more concerned with the things like bearings, fasteners, build tolerance, quality of the carbon lay up, quality control etc. Those things cost money and eventhough Fezzari is consumer direct they still have to pass that kind of expense on to the customer or cut corners.
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    Posting an amalgamation of prior posts to provide some Wreckoning/Smash/Fugitive comparison by request:

    ______________________________________________
    Wreckoning vs Smash:

    I rode an Evil Wreckoning for 1 yr prior to my old Smash (aluminum with 140mm rear end); Wreckoning was 160/160 fox rc2/x2 and the smash was 160/145 with ribbon coil/push 11.6 (ran it briefly with a Rockshox superdeluxe also). The build (including wheels/tires) was transplanted from the Evil to the Smash. I felt the Smash to be the superior bike in everything but high speed through bigger chunk. Climbed better, did flatter sections better. Both carried speed about the same. I was more comfortable on the Smash in steeps but this was likely due to the size difference (around 15mm more reach, longer wheelbase). In high speed chunk the rear end wasn't as planted/stable as the Evil, despite lots of fiddling with shock settings and discussions with the guys at GG and Push. Tried both crush and plush modes.

    ________________________________________________

    Smash vs Fugitive:

    About me: 5í11Ē, 210 geared up mostly muscle. Iím an advanced/expert rider and would describe my riding style as forward and aggressive. Enjoy jumps but like smashing through rocks more. Previous bikes are Yeti SB95, Evil Following V1, Evil Wreckoning, GG Smash, and a few brief stints on Pivot Firebird 27.5 and SC Bronson (newest version). I live in SoCal, primarily San Diego area.

    The Fug is to serve as my primary trail and Enduro racing bike for 2019 and other than a hardtail is my only bike. It is replacing a Guerilla Gravity Smash that I had for a year.

    A word on sizing: I was back and forth between medium and large. As mentioned previously I'm 5'11" but with some weird body proportions. My weakness riding is more tight stuff (especially switchbacks) over tech and high speed. I ended up spending quite a bit of time talking with Noel (thanks for the advice!) on the phone and shared all the above info with him. His final recc was ďyouíre a solid mediumĒ, which is what I got with initial plans for a 40mm stem and plan for 150 fork.

    The bike: ridden in ST mode and LT mode. ST is fox 34 140 and rockshox deluxe 120. LT ended up with a DVO diamond 160 and topaz 135. Wheels are i9 enduro 305 tires Bontrager SE4 rear (with Vittoria Air liner) and either Conti Baron (winter/wet) or Kaiser (summer/dry) front.

    So quick first impressions, first and foremost is damn this is a pretty bike. The black cherry is hands down the best looking paintjob Iíve ever seen. As I mentioned in a previous post, finish and aesthetics are a league above (IMO obviously) the very industrial look of the aluminum GG. The main two things that I can take away from the ride are the cornering and the braking. The cornering is the best of any bike since my old Following. The braking thoughÖIíve never ridden, let alone owned, a bike that delivers so much braking traction. Smooth surface, rough surface, doesnít matter. I found myself on the last ride intentionally coming into corners way hotter than usually just to find the limits. Really awesome.

    __________________________________________________

    Fugitive LT: More forgiving through the rough than the ST Fugitive. The decrease in reach (ran as 135 back, 160 front) was noticeable and made me bump up a stem size to 50mm to compensate. Not a huge difference in pedaling to be honest. No plans to go back to ST mode at this time. In regards to sizing, after lots of back and forth I've come to the conclusion that the M is perfect for me when in ST mode, and just a touch too small (particularly in higher speed, wide open stuff) in LT mode with the 160 fork but would probably be fine with the 150 fork.

    Between the three, all are great bikes and hard to go wrong. I prefer the Knolly suspension to the GG suspension. I felt the GG had the most high end straight line stability but, as mentioned above, the rear end would get unsettled in high speed chop (while the Knolly didn't) which evened it out a bit. The Evil, despite the smaller sizing, definitely took the cake in high speed rough/chop (likely due to the increased rear wheel travel) but the slack seat angle was abysmal. Happy to answer any further questions!

  45. #45
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    Not much love for the Offering in this thread! I can't say it's the best climber but it sure is fun on the down. Mine weighs 31lb with an 11-6 shock and a lyric fork. With that setup I'm fine with my local trails but it might not be my first choice for an all day backcountry ride with 5000'+ of climbing. But then again my V2 Ibis Ripley LS doesn't compare in the fun dept so I would be hard-pressed on which bike to grab.

    Need to swing a leg over the new Ripley. The Ripmo is a bigger bike and would have a lot of overlap with your Endorphin.

  46. #46
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    I have ridden some of the bikes on your list...

    The Offering is solid bike that blurs the lines, leans more trail/AM. It pedals great and suspension is playful. It doesn't feel as deep as previous Evils but prefer the Offerings suspension. Its unfortunate but I fall in-between sizes. I am 5' 8" with short legs, long torso. The medium is fun, but in the end I struggled with the longer front center and riding the way I like to on a bike. I gave it a solid 7 months of trying the longer geometry. I can ride it, but its just not as much fun. The small Offering was too small.

    Forbidden Druid (not on your list) - this is a cool bike, I like the sizing and the small brand allure. The frame is well built. Not as playful as I prefer, but you can pop it....a bit of a slug going uphill, but will do it without much fuss. It corners very well and is very capable on the descents

    Ripmo - (haven't owned) checks a lot of boxes, but I remained worried about the blowing through the travel and bottoming out as reported by multiple people. I have had previous issues with bottoming out on Ibis bikes. However...see next comment on Ripley V4

    Ripley V4 - I am loving this bike!! The geometry is a nice middle ground. Surprisingly I am not bottoming this bike out. Now and then (1% of the time), it will uses all of its travel quickly but not a harsh bottom out - its weird but since it hardly happens its not really an issue. The Ripley is pure fun and handles a lot of trails, gap jumps, drops with compose. Again this bike is super fun and you can install a long dropper. It rides light which is deceiving in how capable it is. The frame is outstanding - simple but does everything right.

    Kona Process 153 29er- currently tinker with this as my bigger bike. This bike does a lot things well, but still too early to really comment.

    Yeti bikes - they have piqued my interest, but really worried about their quality. I have heard they have fixed some of their issues.

    Knolly/Pivot - they would be uber cool to check out, but I don't want a different wheel or cranksets for the super boost

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockman View Post
    Not much love for the Offering in this thread! I can't say it's the best climber but it sure is fun on the down. Mine weighs 31lb with an 11-6 shock and a lyric fork. With that setup I'm fine with my local trails but it might not be my first choice for an all day backcountry ride with 5000'+ of climbing. But then again my V2 Ibis Ripley LS doesn't compare in the fun dept so I would be hard-pressed on which bike to grab.

    Need to swing a leg over the new Ripley. The Ripmo is a bigger bike and would have a lot of overlap with your Endorphin.
    I loved the Following I tested a few years ago and I don't think I'd have a problem with the climbing capability of the Offering. You are comparing it to dw link Turners and Ibis so I can understand where you're coming from. I'm more interested in an active climber through rough, ledgy, loose terrain than ultimate efficiency on smoother climbs. Remember I'm coming from a Knolly which in my opinion climbs really well in the rough, techy stuff and is still totally acceptable to me on smooth climbs, even without flipping the climb switch. I'm perfectly happy to sit and spin smooth(ish) circles up a long non-tech climb all day with a little bob if it means I can have that super active, plush action on the downs that Knolly and Evil are known for.

    I definitely will keep the Offering on my list until I get a good test ride on one.
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  48. #48
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    So I know this is the 29er forum and I know you are looking for a longer travel 29er, BUT, you may want to look at what you really really want: "An Endorphin with more downhill capability".

    I'll admit I did not like my rides on the Endorphin, perhaps it was set up, but I didn't like how that bike rode BUT you do like it, so I'd suggest you stay with what you like: Knolly.

    If you are absolutely dead set on getting a longer travel 29er, I'd get the Fugitive LT and ride it, weight be damned! If they make a carbon frame, then switch frames later. You could also build it light and minimize the weight.

    All that said, I don't think a longer travel 29er is gonna suit your needs as well as a longer travel 27.5 simply because it will be a bigger bike due to having bigger wheels; longer and taller is just the nature of riding wagon wheels.

    I rode an aluminum GG Smash as a 29er and 27+, and though it really was a great longer travel 29er, it was a better 27+, which is what led me to trading out frames for a carbon GG Shred Dogg 27.5. Though I lost a little bit of the sled dog feel, I gained agility and playfulness.

    My 29er is an XC trail bike, 120/130, set up light weight for fast laps and long days on mellower terrain.

    My Shred Dogg has plus wheels, a coil and a 36, so not light, but it's burly!

    BTW: I ride St George a fair amount, it's day drive from Carson City, and the Shred Dogg was perfect for riding there, tons of grip, great climber, traction to the moon. Rode there a month ago before it got hot, just love Suicidal Tendencies and fast laps on Zen.

    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    For sure. The Knolly will stay on the list and honestly is the standard by which all the rest will be judged in my book. My concern with the Fugitive LT is the weight. I rode the regular Fugitive all over Hurricane/St. George last year at the Knollyfest with a fairly light all air (DPX2 shock, 34 Float) build and didn't notice the weight at all. In fact just picking it up it felt to be about the same weight as my Endorphin which is 30 lbs. But this year at the Knollyfest everyone had LT's built heavy duty with coil shocks etc and while I didn't ride one, they felt hefty lifting them up into the truck and onto the racks... like 35 lbs. That's gotta kill some of the liveliness and playfulness I love about the Endorphin.
    Lrg GG Shred Dogg
    Lrg Fezzari Signal Peak
    Lrg Pivot Shuttle (wife's)

  49. #49
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    Out of your list I've only been on the Ripmo. Also demoed an SB150 and Pivot Switchblade. I liked all three quite a bit. I purchased a Ripmo, but would be happy on all three. Well, if my Ripmo ever arrives that is, lol...waiting on it over a month now. And on Ibis' website, they have Ripmo deliveries out to October. So if you want the bike this summer, that may be a consideration.

    I didn't find the SB150 too long or unwieldy. Pretty similar to the Ripmo -- they were 1A and 1B in my preferences. Front end felt perhaps a little lighter on the climbs, and they were pretty similar going down the trail. The Switchblade climbed as well as either, but felt like a little "less bike" on the downhill side. I am a bit of a mauler/monster trucker in my riding style, though. I don't like to worry about lines too much And I'm content to climb sloooowly, for what its worth.
    '11 Specialized Enduro Expert for the trails
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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    So I know this is the 29er forum and I know you are looking for a longer travel 29er, BUT, you may want to look at what you really really want: "An Endorphin with more downhill capability".

    BUT you do like it, so I'd suggest you stay with what you like: Knolly.

    If you are absolutely dead set on getting a longer travel 29er, I'd get the Fugitive LT and ride it, weight be damned! If they make a carbon frame, then switch frames later. You could also build it light and minimize the weight.
    .
    Makes sense, and there's probably a better than 50% chance that that's the way I'll go but the grass is always greener mentality has me looking at some other options.

    In fact, if I go with a Fugitive, I'd likely go with both a short and long shock and a fork that is (relatively) easy to adjust travel on so I could have both bikes. I really felt like the regular Fugitive did feel quite a bit like my Endorphin but was faster in the smoother JEM/Bear Claw Poppy types of terrain and nearly as capable in the rougher, more technical Zen/Grafton/Little Creek stuff. So if I didn't like the feel of the LT in the faster,smoother stuff which is predominately what I have locally (Ely, NV), I could leave it in the shorter travel, lighter mode for that, then switch it for my trips to more technical riding destinations like NorthVancouver/Squamish, Moab, and Phoenix.

    I guess I was hoping to possibly find a one bike compromise in a lighter, more pedal efficient 140ish travel 29er that could do well in both. Afterall Moab isn't all tech. Neither is St. George/Hurricane.
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  51. #51
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    Great comment Nurse Ben....I have been re-evaluating my longer bike and considering going back to 27.5. Before I do so, I am tinkering with another 29er as my longer bike and contemplating one other. Need to get a demo on it.

  52. #52
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    I just got done with a ride on my Offering that had about 2800 feet of technical climbing with some 17-19 degree grades and the traction was unbelievable. What was really enjoyable is not having to have the tip of my saddle stuck up my butt to keep the front wheel down. Was is fast, nope, but very fun and hardly spun a wheel.

  53. #53
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    Ely, now that's out there

    In Carson/Tahoe we have a fair amount of chunk, even the flow can be pretty rocky, so I still have my short travel 29er for making time ... but the Shred Dogg is still my first choice for nearly everything.

    I just got back from ten days in NoCal, OR, WA, I only took one bike (Shred Dogg) rode everything in Oak Ridge including ATC, did a big backcountry hike a bike in Bend, rode the DH park at Hood, Ape Canyon at St Helens, with plenty of long rides (>100 miles) on flowy single track, and though it's a burly bike, the SD never felt out of it's place, pedaled great.

    So yeah, if you get a chance you should try a GG bike.

    If you get over this way, I have a Sz 3 Shred and Greg Nash has a Sz 3 Smash.

    Edit: just got down reading through the Bike Bible Fugitive review and the interview with the Knolly CEO/Designer, gotta admit, that bike sure does look like a sweet ride, and yeah it weighs a ton, but so does a beer gut

    When I got my Carbon GG frame, I knew it was not going to save me any weight cuz it weighs the same as their aluminum frame, but it wasn't about the weight that led me to upgrade, it was about the strength and stiffness. You will definitely not have to worry about stiffness with the Fugitive!

    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Makes sense, and there's probably a better than 50% chance that that's the way I'll go but the grass is always greener mentality has me looking at some other options.

    In fact, if I go with a Fugitive, I'd likely go with both a short and long shock and a fork that is (relatively) easy to adjust travel on so I could have both bikes. I really felt like the regular Fugitive did feel quite a bit like my Endorphin but was faster in the smoother JEM/Bear Claw Poppy types of terrain and nearly as capable in the rougher, more technical Zen/Grafton/Little Creek stuff. So if I didn't like the feel of the LT in the faster,smoother stuff which is predominately what I have locally (Ely, NV), I could leave it in the shorter travel, lighter mode for that, then switch it for my trips to more technical riding destinations like NorthVancouver/Squamish, Moab, and Phoenix.

    I guess I was hoping to possibly find a one bike compromise in a lighter, more pedal efficient 140ish travel 29er that could do well in both. Afterall Moab isn't all tech. Neither is St. George/Hurricane.
    Lrg GG Shred Dogg
    Lrg Fezzari Signal Peak
    Lrg Pivot Shuttle (wife's)

  54. #54
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    Krob, I would experiment with the bike builder on Fanatik's website, which I've found to be pretty accurate, to get general weights for a few comparable builds (I know the Fugitive, Ripmo, and Sentinel are all on there).

  55. #55
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    Iím also in this same market and struggling. Any reason the Instinct and Jeffsy arenít mentioned here? Iím gong to get a Switchblade and Instinct BC demo in soon. Like the specs on the new alloy Hightower but itís looking like limited availability for a while.

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tystevens View Post
    .... I purchased a Ripmo, but would be happy on all three. Well, if my Ripmo ever arrives that is, lol...waiting on it over a month now. And on Ibis' website, they have Ripmo deliveries out to October. So if you want the bike this summer, that may be a consideration....
    Last Tuesday I placed my order for Medium Ripmo in blue. I was told by my LBS that it would ship 7/20. Later I found the ibisB2B website and Monday it was showing Med blue Ripmo shipping 7/20. Now it showing Med blue / black on 9/10 and Large out in october. I can only hope the shipment of frames that was to arrive for shipping out this month is all spoken for any not delayed and that is why it shows being pushed out.

    If that is the case then your frame is probably in the same shipment as mine. I am guessing they order frames in batches from China or Taiwan (where ever they get them from) and once those X number of frame are allocated they are done. Then you would need to wait for the next batch 6 weeks later. Personally I need mine by 9/28 in my hands as that is my plan for doing my First Enduro of the season. However I really want it before then so I can get comfortable on the bike and dial it in before.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    Ely, now that's out there

    In Carson/Tahoe we have a fair amount of chunk, even the flow can be pretty rocky, so I still have my short travel 29er for making time ... but the Shred Dogg is still my first choice for nearly everything.

    I just got back from ten days in NoCal, OR, WA, I only took one bike (Shred Dogg) rode everything in Oak Ridge including ATC, did a big backcountry hike a bike in Bend, rode the DH park at Hood, Ape Canyon at St Helens, with plenty of long rides (>100 miles) on flowy single track, and though it's a burly bike, the SD never felt out of it's place, pedaled great.

    So yeah, if you get a chance you should try a GG bike.

    If you get over this way, I have a Sz 3 Shred and Greg Nash has a Sz 3 Smash.

    Edit: just got down reading through the Bike Bible Fugitive review and the interview with the Knolly CEO/Designer, gotta admit, that bike sure does look like a sweet ride, and yeah it weighs a ton, but so does a beer gut

    When I got my Carbon GG frame, I knew it was not going to save me any weight cuz it weighs the same as their aluminum frame, but it wasn't about the weight that led me to upgrade, it was about the strength and stiffness. You will definitely not have to worry about stiffness with the Fugitive!
    Ely: The Middle of Everywhere! Ha ha. Come on over. I'd be happy to show you around.

    The Fugitive is pretty amazing and I'm probably making too big a deal out of the weight. I rode my old coil-shocked 35 lb Chilcotin this morning and honestly didn't really notice the extra weight that much.

    My son just moved to Reno last year so Tahoe is on my list for this summer/fall. I'll definitely reach out to you and Greg to check out your GG bikes. Enlighten me on the Shred Dog. I've lost track of all their iterations and permutations on the original formula. So many options with their modular frame designs.
    Last edited by KRob; 1 Week Ago at 03:06 PM.
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  58. #58
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    All the GG front triangles are the same, the upper and lower cups can be "flipped" to adjust reach/wheelbase by 10mm, the lower cup has a low or tall option to adjust for stack and to tweak geo.

    Travel and rear center are adjusted with stay kits. Each wheel size and travel require a different suspension, though there may be some crossover. You can also do a "franken build" combo based on your own needs like a long chainstay/short travel Trail Pistol.

    All bikes have an adjustable rear shock position for Plush or Crush ride quality.Though all the bikes in the GG quiver have the same Plush/Crush adjustable suspension, only the Shred has the adjustable travel.

    Smash LT 29
    Trail Pistol, ST 29, also has a "Pistola" MT option
    Mega Trail LT 27.5
    Shred Dogg 27.5 ST/MT

    The Shred Dogg is the 27.5 short/mid travel bike, 130mm or 140mm out back, up to 170mm fork up front. I run mine 140/160. The Shred has the shortest rear center and the largest tire clearance (up to 2.8). The change in ride quality and suspension is very pronounced between Crush (130mm) and Plush (140mm), I prefer the "plush" feel and longer travel.

    Tahoe riding is amazing, well worth the drive, but we had a big snow year so lots of the TRT are still snow covered. Early August would be a good time to come over, it'll hot in Carson/Reno, but cool at the lake, and the trails won't be moon dust yet. We're snow free up high until November, sometimes even December.

    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Ely: The Middle of Everywhere! Ha ha. Come on over. I'd be happy to show you around.

    The Fugitive is pretty amazing and I'm probably making too big a deal out of the weight. I rode my old coil shocked 35 lb Chilcotin this morning and honestly didn't really notice the extra weight that much.

    My son just moved to Reno and Tahoe is on my list for this summer/fall. I'll definitely reach out to you and Greg to check out your GG bikes. Enlighten my on the Shred Dog. I've lost track of all their iterations and permutations on the original formula. So many options with their modular frame designs.
    Lrg GG Shred Dogg
    Lrg Fezzari Signal Peak
    Lrg Pivot Shuttle (wife's)

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    I'm a happy camper aboard my very capable Smash.

    I'd describe my suspension as plush (11.6 shock, 160mm PUSH-coiled Pike fork) and handling as confidence inspiring.
    =sParty
    That's top-of-the-line as far as plush suspension goes. I'll bet it pretty much eats up everything in its path. Nice set up. I'd be tempted to go with the Push 11-6 because it's only $600 extra when ordering from GG. That's more than half off msrp.

    Thanks for your input. Another data point in favor of the Smash.
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  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    having an integrated system for tools and spares as made riding life SO much better for me. Just grab the bike, air the tires, and ride (coil front and rear for me too). Tools, tube, etc all neatly stored on the bike in a way that you never think about them until you need them.
    I'm still pretty firmly in the pack-wearing minority, but I did rent a specialized 6fattie in Hawaii a couple years ago, and that SWAT compartment was pretty handy. GG has some clever attachment points for tubes and such too. Something to consider as I may give up my pack some day.
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  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by rpearce1475 View Post
    Krob, I would experiment with the bike builder on Fanatik's website, which I've found to be pretty accurate, to get general weights for a few comparable builds (I know the Fugitive, Ripmo, and Sentinel are all on there).
    That's a good idea. I did build me up an Offering on the Fanatik website a few weeks ago, just to see what my preferred build would cost. Pretty handy tool. Thanks for the reminder.
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  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    That's a good idea. I did build me up an Offering on the Fanatik website a few weeks ago, just to see what my preferred build would cost. Pretty handy tool. Thanks for the reminder.
    The bike builder on the GG site is accurate in terms of weight as well and gives you a fair number of build options.
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  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by sfr4dr View Post
    Iím also in this same market and struggling. Any reason the Instinct and Jeffsy arenít mentioned here? Iím gong to get a Switchblade and Instinct BC demo in soon. Like the specs on the new alloy Hightower but itís looking like limited availability for a while.
    No reason really other than you gotta start somewhere with the process and I don't have any prior connection or affinity drawing me to either company. I have two buddies down in Hurricane. One had the Jeffsey and one just bought on Instinct BC addition. They both seemed to be pretty happy on them and the numbers look right for what I'm shopping for. Although the Jeffsey owner broke his frame and has had a terrible customer service experience getting it replaced. He moved on to the Ripmo and loves it.

    Lot of good frames out there in this category. Probably a half dozen more that I could consider as well. Let me know how your demos go. I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts on the Instinct. I've ridden the Switchblade and while it felt pretty good, there was just something about it that left me wanting.
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  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    I just got done with a ride on my Offering that had about 2800 feet of technical climbing with some 17-19 degree grades and the traction was unbelievable. What was really enjoyable is not having to have the tip of my saddle stuck up my butt to keep the front wheel down. Was is fast, nope, but very fun and hardly spun a wheel.
    That's good to know. That's the kind of info I'm looking for. I do a lot of climbing and like I said above, not that interested in the speed it climbs the smooth stuff as long as it will claw its way up the loose techy stuff, tracking the ground without sinking too far into its travel.

    The other thing I've really liked about the geometry of these new 29ers, besides the long front center, is the steep seat tube angles. My Endorphin was pretty progressive in this area when it came out and I run my seat pushed forward for an even steeper effective STA, but the Fezzari La Sal Peak was even more upright and it felt good for the steep climbs (both smooth and techy).. Really puts you in a good power position over the pedals without having to get the nose of the saddle up your taint like you said. My ride on the Chilcotin today reminded me how that sucks. Need to fiddle with the seat adjustment tonight, ha ha.
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  65. #65
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    I ended up on a Fugitive LT after testing the Ripmo and SB130. Besides the steeper STA, it seems like they tuned in just enough additional pedaling platform to not need a climb switch for fire roads. The tech climbing traction is still tops but it feels firm under power even with a Float X2 in back.

    BTW, I thought the SB130 was great but couldn't decide if the M or L fit better. Between that and all of the online chatter over tire rub and damaged swingarms, I passed. The Ripmo fit/geo feels really close to the Fugitive LT in the M and L sizes, but it dove deep into its travel a couple of times when I didn't expect it. In the end, I think I was just looking for an excuse to favor Knolly over the others.

    GG seems like a great option but was barely on my radar last November.
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  66. #66
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    So many great bikes on the market right now. So many swiss army knife bikes that just do everything really well and excel in a couple areas. It can be intoxicating to look at, I've sat and stared at numbers all day. I thought the Ripmo was going to be the one, on paper it was perfect, it excelled at pedaling and climbing. I'll still say its the best trail bike I've ever owned, its light, fast and efficient but damn it was boring. The bike just didn't have any character to it, it was vanilla ice cream to me.

    I've owned numerous Knollys over the years (Endo v1, Endo v2, Chilcotin, Podium) and those bikes always had character, real active suspension, great technical climbers and exceptional down hill capability for the travel. Knolly was always pushing the geometry bar in the 26" days, I started riding 170 cranks back then because they dropped the BB's quicker than most other companies, there was trail bikes that could corner then there was Knolly's.

    Your in a good spot, there's so many quality bikes to choose from! Try an Offering, once I stopped riding Knolly's an Evil was the only bike that I truly fell in love with since the Endo v2.

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    I almost got a Ripmo last year when they first came out, same as a lot of folks I though the geo was spot on and it looked good on paper, but I got a GG Smash instead and that was a great bike for me at the time.

    So I got my first ride on a Ripmo last month, did some climbing and descending, and though it climbs fine, it rides tall and it just didn't do anything for me, not agile or flickable like my Smash, though it was a light and efficient climber.

    In comparison to my Signal Peak 29er, the Ripmo was a less efficient climber, less agile, and though it has more aggressive geo and more travel, it was not all that confidence inspiring esp compared to my Smash or Shred Dogg.

    So yeah, not a Ripmo fan, it's milk toast to me.
    Lrg GG Shred Dogg
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    Lrg Pivot Shuttle (wife's)

  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    I almost got a Ripmo last year when they first came out, same as a lot of folks I though the geo was spot on and it looked good on paper, but I got a GG Smash instead and that was a great bike for me at the time.

    So I got my first ride on a Ripmo last month, did some climbing and descending, and though it climbs fine, it rides tall and it just didn't do anything for me, not agile or flickable like my Smash, though it was a light and efficient climber.

    In comparison to my Signal Peak 29er, the Ripmo was a less efficient climber, less agile, and though it has more aggressive geo and more travel, it was not all that confidence inspiring esp compared to my Smash or Shred Dogg.

    So yeah, not a Ripmo fan, it's milk toast to me.
    I was at an event recently and Cane Creek had a tent that had about 6 of the new GG bikes for demo. By buddy demo'd a Size 3 Smash with Helm/CCDB Air, he loved it so much he put his pre order in the next morning! The bike look awesome and I love the fact they're made in CO! He hasnt stopped buzzing about it and playing around with the builds / emailing them to find out different options he can do. He said the top end build with the 11-6 is something like 6600, price is unreal compared to most of the other brands.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Magsrgod View Post
    I was at an event recently and Cane Creek had a tent that had about 6 of the new GG bikes for demo. By buddy demo'd a Size 3 Smash with Helm/CCDB Air, he loved it so much he put his pre order in the next morning! The bike look awesome and I love the fact they're made in CO! He hasnt stopped buzzing about it and playing around with the builds / emailing them to find out different options he can do. He said the top end build with the 11-6 is something like 6600, price is unreal compared to most of the other brands.
    Yeah, I have ridden a lot of bikes, and there are bikes that do one thing or another better, but few that do everything well. My Shred ain't going anywhere for a while, and that's saying something considering I'm quite a bike whore

    Edit: I am tempted to trade in my Signal Peak frameset for a Trail Pistol frameset, run it as light as possible with an SC34, lots of carbon bling, make it a lightweight trail blaster.
    Lrg GG Shred Dogg
    Lrg Fezzari Signal Peak
    Lrg Pivot Shuttle (wife's)

  70. #70
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    Got it narrowed down to four.... or five.

    Quote Originally Posted by andy f View Post
    I ended up on a Fugitive LT... In the end, I think I was just looking for an excuse to favor Knolly over the others.
    I think I may be in this same camp. Good to hear more positive Fugitive feedback.


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    Last edited by KRob; 5 Days Ago at 06:37 AM.
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  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magsrgod View Post
    So many great bikes on the market right now. So many swiss army knife bikes that just do everything really well and excel in a couple areas. It can be intoxicating to look at, I've sat and stared at numbers all day. I thought the Ripmo was going to be the one, on paper it was perfect, it excelled at pedaling and climbing. I'll still say its the best trail bike I've ever owned, its light, fast and efficient but damn it was boring. The bike just didn't have any character to it, it was vanilla ice cream to me.

    I've owned numerous Knollys over the years (Endo v1, Endo v2, Chilcotin, Podium) and those bikes always had character, real active suspension, great technical climbers and exceptional down hill capability for the travel. Knolly was always pushing the geometry bar in the 26" days, I started riding 170 cranks back then because they dropped the BB's quicker than most other companies, there was trail bikes that could corner then there was Knolly's.

    Your in a good spot, there's so many quality bikes to choose from! Try an Offering, once I stopped riding Knolly's an Evil was the only bike that I truly fell in love with since the Endo v2.
    High praise coming from a Knolly guy. Need to test the Offering.

    I did a quick sizing spin around the OTE lot on the Ripmo, Offering, and Fugitive LT a couple months ago. The shiny light weight plastic bikes felt really good and had my interest for sure.

    That character and uniqueness of the Knolly, GG, and Evil are a strong pull for me. As cool as the Ripmo and new Hightower may be, itís going to be tough to pick a bike that literally everyone else has....unless theyíre really that much better.


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  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Good to hear some positive Fugitive feedback.
    I haven't heard anything but....

  73. #73
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    Double post
    2020 Santa Cruz Hightower V2
    2019 Specialized Stumpjumper
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    I won't recommend my bike/brand based on your requirements. But I will say, having an integrated system for tools and spares as made riding life SO much better for me. Just grab the bike, air the tires, and ride (coil front and rear for me too). Tools, tube, etc all neatly stored on the bike in a way that you never think about them until you need them.

    Has nothing to do with climbing and descending. But being upset that your tube fell off somewhere back on the trail or forgetting your tool in you car sucks.
    Haha... the one thing I miss about my Stumpjumper compared to the Hightower is the SWAT Box... I never had to think about what to bring or wearing a pack.

    Now I am back to either riding with no tools or spares on my local daily rides and risking a walk home or I wear the Raptor 10 again... I guess at least now I have more water on me on those longer rides and spares for others when I lead group rides. :-)
    2020 Santa Cruz Hightower V2
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  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by David R View Post
    I haven't heard anything but....
    . Good point!


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  76. #76
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    I currently ride a 2019 Stumpjumper 27.5 alloy... However, after test riding the Offering, I ordered one the next day. Loved how it felt. Should have it in hands any day now....

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hesher123 View Post
    Haha... the one thing I miss about my Stumpjumper compared to the Hightower is the SWAT Box... I never had to think about what to bring or wearing a pack.

    Now I am back to either riding with no tools or spares on my local daily rides and risking a walk home or I wear the Raptor 10 again... I guess at least now I have more water on me on those longer rides and spares for others when I lead group rides. :-)
    I've noticed a few other bikes (GG comes to mind) that has a storage setup. No SWAT, but better than randomly strapping stuff to your bike.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    I've noticed a few other bikes (GG comes to mind) that has a storage setup. No SWAT, but better than randomly strapping stuff to your bike.


    After 2 years of lovely pack-free riding you'll be hard pressed to sell me a bike that can't fit 2 water bottles and a frame bag.
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  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    High praise coming from a Knolly guy. Need to test the Offering.

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    I finally got the Offering on a flow trail with some tables and gaps at Big Sky today. This bike is way more playful than either my V2 Ripley LS or Turner RFX.

    Got it narrowed down to four.... or five.-mtn-meadow_2.jpg

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockman View Post
    I finally got the Offering on a flow trail with some tables and gaps at Big Sky today. This bike is way more playful than either my V2 Ripley LS or Turner RFX.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Playful and a capable downhill ripper. Thatís a nice combination. Very intrigued.

    Nice steeze, btw. You too appear to be a very capable downhill ripper.


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  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Playful and a capable downhill ripper. Thatís a nice combination. Very intrigued.

    Nice steeze, btw. You too appear to be a very capable downhill ripper.

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    Well, as you know at our advanced ages bad things happen when the tires leave the ground. I posted the pic not to stroke my 57 yr old ego but to emphasize the point. I do not feel confident in the air on my Ripley and my RFX, while quite stable, is not nearly as poppy. I have not been on other recent mid travel 29rs to compare but I'd like to try the Ripmo.

  82. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockman View Post
    Well, as you know at our advanced ages bad things happen when the tires leave the ground. .
    Ha ha. True that. A little pop over the occasional booter is still fun though. Glad to hear the Offering has that.


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  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    My Shred ain't going anywhere for a while, and that's saying something considering I'm quite a bike whore

    Edit: I am tempted to trade in my Signal Peak frameset for a Trail Pistol frameset, run it as light as possible with an SC34, lots of carbon bling, make it a lightweight trail blaster.
    The Shred Dog sounds a lot like my Endorphin (minus the plus tire capability). I'm running 150 (sometimes 160) mm fork with 130 travel rear and it is a great all around trail bike.

    How long have you had your Signal Peak? Maybe you could speak to some of the frame quality, durability, customer service questions I have with Fezzari. Like I said, I haven't heard any bad reports at all.... just not a lot of history or data points to help me out with my decision.
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  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    The Shred Dog sounds a lot like my Endorphin (minus the plus tire capability). I'm running 150 (sometimes 160) mm fork with 130 travel rear and it is a great all around trail bike.

    How long have you had your Signal Peak? Maybe you could speak to some of the frame quality, durability, customer service questions I have with Fezzari. Like I said, I haven't heard any bad reports at all.... just not a lot of history or data points to help me out with my decision.
    Rob if you can get out this way I have the new Revved SMASH. Get with Ben and I and you can throw a leg over both and try them out. Both are great bikes regardless.

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by punisher911 View Post
    I currently ride a 2019 Stumpjumper 27.5 alloy... However, after test riding the Offering, I ordered one the next day. Loved how it felt. Should have it in hands any day now....
    Nice! Count another vote for the Offering. Did you happen to test ride any other bikes before you decided on the Offering?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts once you get it and get a few more rides in on it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Nice! Count another vote for the Offering. Did you happen to test ride any other bikes before you decided on the Offering?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts once you get it and get a few more rides in on it.
    I actually did not test ride any others. Picked it up today. Unfortunately the weather has gone to poo here in SE Michigan and lots of rain in the forecast. I will update once I get some quality rides on Demon.

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    Rob if you can get out this way I have the new Revved SMASH. Get with Ben and I and you can throw a leg over both and try them out. Both are great bikes regardless.
    Thanks Greg! I've been following your Smash thread with interest and will definitely hit you and Ben up when I get over to Reno to visit my son sometime this summer or fall.
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  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Nice! Count another vote for the Offering. Did you happen to test ride any other bikes before you decided on the Offering?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts once you get it and get a few more rides in on it.

    Rob,
    I have an Offering and rode a V1 Following (with avalanche cartridge/shock tune) for 3 years before that. I haven't ridden the other bikes on your list, but did have a local trail demo on the SB 130 before purchasing the Offering.

    The Offering definitely climbs more efficiently and has a better pedaling platform than the V1 following. I've ridden them back to back with the same wheels and tires. They both climb ledgy tech terrain very very well. In my opinion they also climb smooth terrain very well, but a step below the SB 130 (and probably the Ripmo) in terms of pedaling platform.

    The Offering feels plusher, poppier, and more maneuverable than the SB 130 on the downs. The SB 130 had great straight line stability but felt a bit soulless to me (and I had thought I would buy one before I demoed). I really like the Offering and have had it all over Moab and CO front range trails where it has excelled. The tech climbing and descending ability was awesome on Blue dot/Portal and Ahab. Compared to the Following, it's a little more difficult to throw it around (much longer wheelbase) but it's muuuch more capable in chunk. Hope this helps.

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    Nice! Count another vote for the Offering. Did you happen to test ride any other bikes before you decided on the Offering?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts once you get it and get a few more rides in on it.
    Looks like tomorrow and Saturday morning will be my first real trail rides on the Offering. Will have much more to report on it after that. I also have a race on the 27th, so I will definitely spending the first few rides adjusting/setting up the bike to my liking/comfort. So far though, not loving the SRAM RE brakes. Hopefully they get a bit stronger after bedding in more. I know, brakes are not part of the pedaling/ride quality in bike comparisons, but they are part of the overall package to me. Maybe with some adjustments and time I will learn to like them.

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