• 07-31-2019
    Sand Yeti
    SC Chameleon <> RSD Middlechild <> Specialized Fuse
    Broke my Ibis DV9. The DV9 was fun while it lasted, ibis would only offer discounted replacement frame. Needless to say I WILL NEVER OWN ANOTHER IBIS PRODUCT!

    Potentially looking to replace the DV9 with another hardtail to compliment my endure rig. The bike will be ridden on flatter less technical terrain. I plan to run 29X2.6 tires am 190 ish and fairly aggressive rider but definitely not a heavy hitter by any stretch. I always opt for extra credit lines but love to pedal as much as I like to descend.

    Both the Middlechild and Fuse would require a new fork. I have ridden RSD before and find them very accessible as a company.

    If I don't replace the hardtail I'll likely wait a year and opt for a mid-travel full suspension 140 rear 150 front or 130 rear 140 front and increase the travel of my endure rig for more gravity focused ridding.

    Thanks in advance-

    Sand Yeti
  • 08-13-2019
    Child. Best geo and Alex is great to deal with.
  • 08-14-2019
    First off, I am sorry that has been your experience with Ibis. I have the Ripley LS along w/ my friend....no problems for me. For my friend, they replaced the front triangle recently because the tire was making contact and wore through the paint.

    I can't comment about Fuse nor the Child, but I do own the Chameleon, and previously owned the '16 Kona Honzo ST. I kind of have an idea of how the geometries will feel though.

    Personally, I don't like the steep STAs. I understand the reasoning behind it, but I just don't like them as they tend to get in the way of my standing position, and this was even true with my Honzo which had a ridiculously long reach. I feel like the Chameleon will feel a little bit tighter in the cockpit, and you're likely going to be pushed to a longer stem or size up. I'm 5'8/9 on a size medium.

    As far as the ride, I honestly feel like the Chameleon is a very smooth riding frame, and the it has an excellent geometry. I have set mine up both geared and SS, and it's a blast. I would recommend a 140mm (currently running 130mm). I believe build quality and frame design is excellent on the Chameleon. It really looks like a well thought out frame.

    I believe the Fuse is going to be closer in fit to the Chameleon, and the Child is going to be similar to the Honzo. I don't feel it's necessarily a bad thing, and it may be a better fit, but one thing I did't like about the Honzo is it's inability to get up and go despite having the stays slammed. The Chameleon always felt sharper especially climbing and tight sections. I don't mind steel. I have owned more than a few, but I believe companies are making really nice aluminum frames these days, and I wouldn't discount them.

    Obviously, nothing replaces swinging a leg over, but I really feel like the Santa Cruz is a very good bike from a great company, and an extremely easy bike to get along with. I don't personally like Specialized all that much as a company, and I believe the Fuse is just a segment filler, and they're not all that interested in making the best bike they can in that market segment.....middle of the road boring, but it's an option, just feel the Chameleon is better and more interesting.
  • 08-14-2019
    Sand Yeti
    Thanks! @ Tantrum007 and Dubdryver

    Yes, bummed about Ibis but what can you do. Just my personal experience. I have two friends that love their Ripmos, and I'm sure I would as well, not to mention the new Ripley.

    Agreed on RSD, Alex is great just not sure if I want to purchase another fork since I already have one on hand.

    The Chameleon wouldn't require a new fork. at 5'10" I would get a large and run a 35mm or 50mm stem.

    Not very familiar with Specialized but the new frame did catch my eye as it fits what I'm looking for.