Norco Sight, Santa Cruz High Tower, or Ibis Ripley GX- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Norco Sight, Santa Cruz High Tower, or Ibis Ripley GX

    Hi, I was considering one of these 3 bikes.

    Looks like Ibis Ripley would lean closer to the xc trail side, while high tower toward the all mountain side, with a sight being in the middle?

  2. #2
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    demo the bikes, decide which one you like the best. Those bikes are in different categories, so to me, it sounds like you need to decide what type of riding you intend to do, and what sort of bike fits that for you. From there, it's all about what frame fits your body the best and what you're most comfortable on.

    The short story is that none of this discussion matters without you demo'ing and riding bikes. The internet isn't going to tell you much, if anything, about which will fit your needs the best.

  3. #3
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    There is thread in the Santa Cruz forums on new hightower where user "Golfchick" did a back to back demo on both Ripmo vs Hightower. The Ripley should be compared to the Tallboy not the Hightower. Anyway she (I am assuming a she) rode both and liked how the Ripmo climbed, but preferred the Hightower on the descents. Personally I have a Ripmo as my "big bike" I love how it climbs techy stuff and goes down pretty fast. My other bike is a Specialized Epic and that climbs much faster, but it is also 7lbs lighter. If I had just one bike then the Ripley would be a mix between the two and is probably good for mellow to rocky trails. However the Ripmo is better for bigger trails. My Epic can handle alot, but some places it just over matched and that is where the Ripmo comes in, but I will say the Ripmo can ride mellow trails too. Just not as fast an an XC rocket like the Epic. For me the hightower is just a little heavier and lacks the climbing pop that I want from any bike.

    So it really depends on what you want to ride and the experience you want.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '19 Ibis Ripmo, XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  4. #4
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    different categories? How many bike categories are there now? They are all 29er trail bikes with somewhat similar geometry, one just leans closer to XC, the other closer to AM

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    Yeah, bike categories are weird now. “Trail” bikes are approaching what used to be “AM” bikes a few years ago. Same premise though, with longer travel bikes being more suited to hitting bigger trail features.

    There’s some pretty capable short-travel bikes out there but you really should demo a few bikes in different categories to get a better idea of what will work for you.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kulharin View Post
    different categories? How many bike categories are there now? They are all 29er trail bikes with somewhat similar geometry, one just leans closer to XC, the other closer to AM
    Lots of catagories, but most companies have some what similar set up

    XC HT
    XC FS - 100/100 (or 100/120) SC Blur - Pivot Mach 4 SL - Ibis (does not have one) - Specialized Epic
    Trail - 120/130 (or 120-140) SC Tallboy - Pivot Trail 429 - Ibis Ripley - Specialized Stumpjumper ST
    Trail/Enduro (AM) - (135-150)/ 140-160 SC Hightower, Pivot Switchblade - Ibis Ripmo - Specialized Stumpjumper
    Enduro - 155+/160+ SC Megatower, Pivot Firebird, Ibis does not have 29er, but HD4 in 27.5 - Specialized Enduro

    Then there is similar split for 27.5, but often not an XC 100mm bike. I don't know Norco's product enough to fit in their products, but you get the idea. Generally as you move 'up" in the classes you get longer travel, slacker head angles and more weight due to beefier parts and frames. Of course there are crossovers and in-betweeners and what works best for you is dependant on ride style and trails. You can get a bike to "do it all", but it will be less than idea in some cases.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '19 Ibis Ripmo, XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  7. #7
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    It's starting to come down to kinematics, travel and leverage ratio more then anything these days. We're starting to see the geometry get dialed into minute changes from one intended riding style/type to another. Before too long, I think you'll see the difference between trail and enduro bikes come down to .5 - 1 degree of HTA and 10mm or so in chainstay length.

    It's the amount of travel and how progressive the frame is that's starting to define the categories. Shorter travel frames (and shorter stroke shocks) make it easier to compress the suspension and access the pre-load of the air (or coil) spring. This helps more riders access the playful nature of these short travel rigs that have what we used to perceive as big travel bike geo. On the heavier hitting bikes, you have to put more energy into them to get the same pop and energy out of them. This allows you to ride bigger terrain with control, but also leads to a feeling of not coming alive until they are at speed and have energy being thrown into them.

    This is why you absolutely must demo the bikes. Geo charts and spec numbers aren't telling the story any more. These days it's about what you intend to do with the bike and what your riding style is. That is the lens you must use while demo'ing to make sure you get the right tool for the job you intend to do. From there, you narrow it down to a few bikes that fit your style and desires, and chose the one that you like the best and fits your body the best.

    For example... The new ripley is a great bike, as is the new hightower. However when someone tells me they are comparing these two, my first thought is that if you're looking at the ripley, then you should be looking at the tb4 instead of the ht2. Not that the HT2 isn't the right choice, but they will run out of capacity and feel at home in different terrain meaning that to me, your first step is deciding what your ride fantasy is. Is it one bike to do everything from park days, to shuttle days, to trail/xc pedal days and a few enduro races? Then HT2 or ripmo. If you picture more xc/trail days and some xc races thrown in, then tb4 or ripley.

    The sight may be qualified for something in the middle, but I haven't ridden one of those yet so I can't say.

  8. #8
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    If the geometry is relatively close across the bikes you like, it will come down to the type of ride you’re seeking. Long travel bikes can dumb down the trail if you’re not riding stuff that warrants +150mm of suspension. Likewise, riding big features on a short travel bike can get sketchy.

    to make things a little easier, maybe demo a mid-travel (120/130) and long travel (140/150) bike from the same manufacturer to see how much the suspension impacts your ride.

  9. #9
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    I am on an Anthem SX 2015 27.5 with 100 in the rear and 130 in the front. Great bike, but I am starting to find the limit of what it's capable of. I am looking for something a bit more all mountain friendly without leaving XC far behind. i tried the Trance 29er and was pretty meh about it.

    Looks like the Norco Sight or Ibis Ripley might fit the bill, but sizing is tricky. With the Anthem SX I was in between a M and an L; I went with the L and found it always to be slightly on the bigger side for me at 5'10...

    Looking at the Norco Sight, I again fall between the sizes... With the Ibis Ripley it only recommends the Medium for somewhat up to 5'9 ... although looking at all the measurements a medium ripley isn't far from the large anthem SX, just slightly smaller. I'd be wary of sizing up on any bike going from a 27.5 to a 29er. If I went with the ripley I'd go with 140 on the front.

  10. #10
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    Geometry numbers have changed so with Ibis recommending medium for up to 5'9" I would follow that and go with a large with you being 5'10".
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '19 Ibis Ripmo, XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

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