Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
    tmb
    tmb is offline
    When in doubt- turn left
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    143

    Midwest gearmasher: Primer or Ripley LS?

    Looking to go a little bit more "trail" than my current '18 element, have it narrowed down to these two. I need a bike that has enough xc DNA in it to still be a good/fun ripper on my local MI/OH/IN trails yet can handle the rougher stuff on road trips to NC/NY/PA etc.

    I'm late 40's, 175lbs and fairly fit. Years of riding/racing SS has turned me into a chronic gearmasher. Doing more gravel and fat bike racing than pure xc anymore and I have a nice ti hardtail for the true xc as well.

    Must haves:
    frame only option
    in front triangle water bottle
    Boost spacing
    120-130mm travel
    room for 34t ring at min.
    room for 2.4 Ardent on 35mm OD wheel
    great pedaling for a gearmasher

    pros/cons for my short list
    Ripely pros: THREADED BB!!, room for 2.6 tires, room for 34t ring, sounds like it might be the better pedaling frame.
    cons: reach seems kinda short, no room for 36t ring, kinda meh about the colors.

    Primer pros: sounds like it pedals damn near as well as ripley, room for 36t ring and the 2.4 ardent, geo may be a better fit, that blue/green is damn cool, bit heavier than ripley.
    cons: PF!

    Demo's aren't a possibility anywhere near me for either bike.

    other frames I've looked at:
    Sniper Trail- maybe too xc and too similar to the element.
    new Cdale Habit- no frame only, probably not enough xc
    SB100- too much damn money
    RM Instint- @140mm, too much bike
    Pivot Trail429- My shop can't order Pivot, would need to rebuild rear wheel for super boost

    Build kit will consist of Fox 34 or Pike, 35mm carbon wheels with 2.6 Rekon f/ 2.4 Ardent r, XO1 1x11, maybe try the CC DBAir IL rear shock.

    My shop is open to ordering from a lot of different places but there are a few he can't get.

    Any thoughts? Frames I haven't considered?

    T

  2. #2
    Elitest thrill junkie
    Reputation: Jayem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    29,807
    I can't see how not having room for a 36t ring could be considered a con. Does anyone ever really pedal in that gear fast enough that they are topping out at 100rpm? Just because you can turn it doesn't mean it's making you go any faster, I've done lots and lots of XC racing and can say it makes no difference in how "fast" you are or go. 32t, sure, but that's the basis that most of the manufacturers are designing around, 2t bigger or smaller...ok. Beyond that? No way.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    23,266
    How about the new Trance Advanced 29er, 115mm rear travel paired up with a 130mm fork, very nice geo, Maestro suspension which pedals good I think this would be just that extra bit of bike you're looking for, with not too much travel, yet the geometry to make trail riding fun.

    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  4. #4
    Having a nice day!
    Reputation: LoneStar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    1,245
    I've been eyeing that Sniper trail. Just enough travel to take the sting off and be quick, but with a nice trail-like geometry. I think it may have better tire clearance than the Primer if I recall correctly.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    6,591
    I've always been drawn to the Ripley, but the 325 BB height is too low for my tastes. IIRC the Primer is 335 which is a bit better.
    Whining is not a strategy.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    16
    The Ripley geometry is a little behind the current trends.

  7. #7
    Keep on Rockin...
    Reputation: Miker J's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    5,595
    Quote Originally Posted by SoaD009 View Post
    The Ripley geometry is a little behind the current trends.
    Agree.

    I'd likely have gone the Ripley route for a snappy trail bike, but it needs a revision. Instead I just got my hands on that very exact Trance 29 frame I'm currently building up.

    OP...

    PF bottom bracket has never been an issue for me. At least not with Shimano style PF 92. Their XTR BB94 bottom brackets work well. Zero creaking.

    Agree that a 36t chainring is not necessary on a trail bike. Even if you are a SS masher.

  8. #8
    tmb
    tmb is offline
    When in doubt- turn left
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    143
    Thanks for the feedback, guys. My shop was a Giant dealer a few years ago, I'll have to ask it they still have a hookup. And call Intense about tire clearance on the Primer.

    As far as the 36t ring goes, I know it's not necessary, that's why it wasn't on the "must have" list. But when you're home trail is a 9mi loop with 600ft of climbing, the 36t makes more sense. Plus I'd likely swap it out for 34t for road trips.

    As a point of reference, my ss is geared at 35x17 and my 5'2" 125lb wife runs 2:1 on her ss.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: newking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    531
    I have a primer (bandit edition) and it's a great bike. I swapped it for a Ibis Mojo HD3 as I did not like the 27.5 or 2.6 tires and really wanted to go back to a 29er for my LT bike.

    On the primer you can go 2.6 Forekaster on Front and 2.35 on rear. May be tough to run anything bigger than a 2.4 on the rear.

    Mine is a 34 front ring and I am going to upgrade to a 34 oval. I ride 34x19 on my SS but we have some short steep hills.

    A lot of people don't like PF bracket as you can't run a bash ring etc but I have not had any issues with mine or need for a bash guard.

    Both manufactures make great bike so I am sure you will be happy on either one. A friend of mine had a Ripley and loved it but just upgraded to a Ripmo.


    Quote Originally Posted by tmb View Post
    Thanks for the feedback, guys. My shop was a Giant dealer a few years ago, I'll have to ask it they still have a hookup. And call Intense about tire clearance on the Primer.

    As far as the 36t ring goes, I know it's not necessary, that's why it wasn't on the "must have" list. But when you're home trail is a 9mi loop with 600ft of climbing, the 36t makes more sense. Plus I'd likely swap it out for 34t for road trips.

    As a point of reference, my ss is geared at 35x17 and my 5'2" 125lb wife runs 2:1 on her ss.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    23,266
    Yeah, forgot to add that little tid bit on the Prime since I had helped my friend pick out his new bike, which turned out to be a Primer, but we both are quite disappointed in tyre clearance, barely enough if you get into any sort of mud for a 2.3" Maxxis on an i30 rim.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Posts
    209
    I'd say I ride in about the same type of scenarios as you, KY/OH/MO are the three states I'm riding in most, with occasional trips to places with that require a bit more bike (TN and WNC). I ride a Trek Fuel EX and I think it's perfect for that kind of riding.

    I looked at both the bikes you're looking at and what turned me away from the Ripley was the geo (very short reach). The Primer I never got to actually ride, but if I'm remembering correctly the seat angle is pretty slack which worried me a bit. I also think that Giant Trance would be a great option, just came out a little later than I was looking to buy. The new GT 29er was another one you might wanna look at, 130/130 with modern geo. Just to muddy the waters for you even more haha
    Patrick

  12. #12
    tmb
    tmb is offline
    When in doubt- turn left
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    143
    Left a vm at Intense to get clarification on rear tire clearance.

    Trek is carried by a competing local shop so my LBS wouldn't be able to order. Not only have I been racing for them for a number of years, we are friends so I like to be shop loyal.
    GT doesn't appear to have water bottle in trianlge, kinda hard to tell from the pics though.
    Giant is a solid option if my shop can still get them, $3k retail for frame only is getting up there though.

    Anyone else have time on both Ripley and Primer that can speak to their standing climb abilities?

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    1
    I have the same struggles to choose this kind of bike.
    After half a day of downhill fun in Val di Sole (Italian Alps), I wanted a playful trail/AM bike with around 130mm of travel.
    A few weeks ago, I have tested the new habit. I was a fun bike, but my presentiment became true. These kind of bikes will not fit my kind of riding/trails where I live (the flat side of Belgium and not that technically). For me, the habit was too slack and heavy to get up to steep. I don't want to buy of bike which I can really use only a few times a year.
    I have not tested any other bike, just checking out the geo and reading reviews.

    My current bike is cdale F29, 6 years old with an old school geo (71 HTA). I have never owned a fully.

    My gut feeling, I don't think the giant trance will work for us with a HTA of 66,5 and is not that light.
    On this moment I have two options in mind.
    Have you already considered the SC tallboy (120-110) or the scott spark (120-120, not the RC)?
    The shock location on the spark can be a mud collector, not ideal in a wet environment like Belgium.
    On paper, the tallboy looks perfect for me in the CC XO1 configuration. All the gear I want, except the @#%$ price ..
    Last edited by gfr75; 1 Week Ago at 03:42 AM.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    362
    Have you considered a Devinci Django 29?
    Frame only option and DW link climbs like a goat. 120 rear 130 front, modern geo, modern reach and tire clearance.
    Checks all the boxes and worth a look for sure.

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: newking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    531
    I have the primer and it does have a steep seat angle around 73 degrees which I prefer for seated climbing. I rode a buddy's Ripley for a real quick ride - everything felt weird in terms of the cockpit as I was not used to it, but the suspension felt great.

    The primer has the 3 position fox shock I run mine in the middle position 80% of the time and you can pretty much hammer up hills out of the saddle without much pedal bob. Or run it in Firm mode and it's almost locked out. Easy to reach.

    Regarding the lack of rear tire clearance it might be an advantage for climbing as I think the bike will be faster with a 2.3 or 2.4 rear tires on the climbs verses if you ran something like a 2.5 WT DHF or something bigger and "slower"




    Quote Originally Posted by tmb View Post
    Left a vm at Intense to get clarification on rear tire clearance.

    Trek is carried by a competing local shop so my LBS wouldn't be able to order. Not only have I been racing for them for a number of years, we are friends so I like to be shop loyal.
    GT doesn't appear to have water bottle in trianlge, kinda hard to tell from the pics though.
    Giant is a solid option if my shop can still get them, $3k retail for frame only is getting up there though.

    Anyone else have time on both Ripley and Primer that can speak to their standing climb abilities?

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Posts
    209
    Quote Originally Posted by bikerfisher11 View Post
    Have you considered a Devinci Django 29?
    Frame only option and DW link climbs like a goat. 120 rear 130 front, modern geo, modern reach and tire clearance.
    Checks all the boxes and worth a look for sure.
    Th Django (and I believe all of Devinci's bikes) are split-pivot systems (similar to Trek ABP), not DW-link
    Patrick

  17. #17
    tmb
    tmb is offline
    When in doubt- turn left
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    143
    Looked at Tallboy before I got the Element, pricing structure for my shop wasn't great(I'm lucky enough to get team pricing), so I had to pass. If they offered frame only in the standard C frames then it would have been a contender.

    Scott is a no-go at my LBS.

    Glanced at Django. Most of what I had read made it sound like more of a blunt instrument but I will look at it some more, it does tick quite a few boxes.

    It's a good time to be a mtb'er.

  18. #18
    tmb
    tmb is offline
    When in doubt- turn left
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    143
    Talked to Intense, 2.4 Ardent on 35mm OD/30mm ID wheel will be about as big as I can go. 34t ring easily fit, 36 should but will be tight. Only downside is the wicked cool blue/green color is out of stock with no known date, though the matte black is pretty sharp too.

Similar Threads

  1. Ripley or Primer
    By onobed in forum 29er Bikes
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 08-10-2018, 01:01 PM
  2. 2018 Ibis Ripley GX vs. 2017 Ripley GX
    By dddfg44 in forum 29er Bikes
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 06-28-2018, 04:53 AM
  3. DW (Ripley LS) vs VPP (Intense Primer) -- for the lower back
    By Radioface in forum Shocks and Suspension
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 11-25-2016, 08:35 PM
  4. Anyone have Ripley LS in Midwest?
    By onlyontwo in forum Ibis
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 04-10-2016, 03:06 PM
  5. How long to let primer dry and how much to sand?
    By getagrip in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 51
    Last Post: 09-13-2011, 12:39 AM

Members who have read this thread: 120

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

mtbr.com and the ConsumerReview Network are business units of Invenda Corporation

(C) Copyright 1996-2018. All Rights Reserved.