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  1. #1
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    Id travel - claimed vs actual

    I have just measyred the rear wheel travel of my 6 week old Id, which is fitted with a Cane Creek Cloud 9 shock, 200mm x 50mm. It is 110mm maximum. I thought this size shock should give 5 3/4" (145mm). This is a big difference. Has anyone found a similar problem?

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    You're not counting tire compression, frame flex, and wheel flex.
    "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.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem
    You're not counting tire compression, frame flex, and wheel flex.
    Surely you can't count those things, they're all variables, especially the tyre flex. a manufacturer could fit big tyres, under-inflate them and get another 1" of travel easily!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedtriple
    I have just measyred the rear wheel travel of my 6 week old Id, which is fitted with a Cane Creek Cloud 9 shock, 200mm x 50mm. It is 110mm maximum. I thought this size shock should give 5 3/4" (145mm). This is a big difference. Has anyone found a similar problem?
    I measured the travel on mine at 130mm with an RP3 listed at 7.5" eye to eye (190.5mm) and 2" stroke (50.8mm).

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedtriple
    I have just measyred the rear wheel travel of my 6 week old Id, which is fitted with a Cane Creek Cloud 9 shock, 200mm x 50mm. It is 110mm maximum. I thought this size shock should give 5 3/4" (145mm). This is a big difference. Has anyone found a similar problem?

    It depends on your shock stroke. An Id with the Romic that has a stroke of 2.25" gets roughly 5.5" travel whereas an Id with a RP3 that has a 2" stroke gets roughly 5" of travel.

  6. #6
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    A couple things.

    2 (50 mm) inch stroke shock will give you near what you are measuring. That cane creek is around that much.

    How did you measure the travel? Technically you measure the motion of the rear axle and that is not a simple as one might think. A lot of people try measure the ground to the seat which skews the result since the seat is not over the rear axle. The best way is to hold a stick flat on the seat, measure the height of the stick from the ground above the axle. Then compress it and allow the stick to angle with the seat. Then measure again and take the difference. Don't try to keep the stick level because if you do, you project the bottom bracked height over and are not measuring the axle path.

  7. #7
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    I've just tried that and it is exactly 4.5". I must say that I feel cheated! I think I have grounds for a refund.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedtriple
    I've just tried that and it is exactly 4.5". I must say that I feel cheated! I think I have grounds for a refund.
    Is your shock compressing the full 2"? I don't know much about CC shocks, but with a lot of air shocks the last 1/4" or so are hard to compress manually, especially when you're holding a ruler.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fat Elvis
    Is your shock compressing the full 2"? I don't know much about CC shocks, but with a lot of air shocks the last 1/4" or so are hard to compress manually, especially when you're holding a ruler.
    Yep, the full 2". That's interesting, as CC claim on their website that their shocks typically offer more travel than the opposition.

  10. #10
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    That's why I sold mine....

    I had an '02/03 Id. The website claimed 6" travel (at the time) with the Romic shock, and I think 5" with an air shock. I had the Romic. I measured my actual travel at 4.75". That's over an inch off, 20% less than claimed. Ridiculous. Not to mention they said standover would be 31" and it was actually 34" from ground to center of top tube, (directly in the middle between head tube and seat tube, just like the red line that appears on their website when you put your mouse on Standover Height), AND I had the minimum-travel fork recommended, 125mm. It would have been even higher with a 150mm fork, which they recommended a range of 125-150. Oh yeah, the BB height was 14.8", and the website said 14". I felt like I was in a monster truck riding that thing.

    So anyway, here's the most accurate way to measure travel (in the ghetto), and this is how I did it with the ID:

    1) Flip the bike upside down on the ground. Put books or whatever (something SOLID) under the handlebars (or seat) until your front AND rear axles are BOTH equidistant measured from the ground (to make sure the wheel doesn't arc funny as it travels. This way it will travel basically vertically).

    2) Now make note of this measurement from ground to rear axle.

    3) a) Less accurate method: Let air out of shock or remove coil spring from coil shock. Compress shock completely as you can (i.e. push rear wheel down), without compressing the books or moving the bike. Measure from ground to rear axle again. Might need a friend for this, as shocks usually try to come up a little bit from the bottom-out bumper or air that doesn't completely release. Subtract from old measurement, and there's your travel.

    3 b) More accurate method, what I used: Know for sure what your eye-to-eye and stroke length is for your shock. (7.875 and 2.25 for my Romic) Unbolt top shock-mount completely so that swingarm/rear wheel swings completely freely independent of shock. Now, manually move rear wheel down until distance between shock mount on rocker arm (top shock mount) and shock mount on frame (lower shock mount) is exactly "eye-to-eye length minus stroke length". So when this distance is 5.625" in my case, I know I have simulated the shock compressing the full 2.25". Now measure the distance from ground to rear axle, subtract from measurement from step 2, and you're done. Why is this more accurate? You don't have to worry about compressing the rubber bottom-out bumper in the shocks which the companies DO include in their stroke lengths. Also, since you don't have to put your weight into compressing the shock like in step 3a, you don't risk compressing the "books", or shifting the bike around. Indeed, you have to hold the wheel UP so that it doesn't go too FAR down in it's travel!!

    There you go.
    Last edited by tmargeson; 01-26-2006 at 02:21 AM.

  11. #11
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    Did you contact Ellsworth or your dealer? I have e-mailed both - the dealer is sticking to the 5" claim, Ellsworth haven't replied yet. I may be wrong but consumer law in Britain is on my side and I could demand a refund ...............

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    Yeah, I emailed Ellsworth. First I told them my standover was off by 3", and the BB was off by almost an inch, with the minimun travel fork. They said headset stack height, fork axle-to-crown height, tires can make a difference. I said I had a King headset, Talas 125RLC fork, standard 2.1 tires, all of which are on the small side, and certainly don't raise a bike 3".

    They asked to have it looked at at a bike shop to make sure the frame was straight and not altered by aftermarket parts. I told them I was the head mechanic at a bike shop for 5 years and knew what I was doing, and STILL asked an Ellsworth dealer to look at it anyway and it was fine. (My shop isn't an Ellsworth dealer, but I loved their bikes).

    Then I told them about the travel too. They said I had the wrong shock. I re-iterated that I know what I'm doing, gave them the measurements of the shock, etc.

    They asked me to ship it back with the receipt. I told them honestly that I bought it used from a riding buddy (who also works at a shop and takes meticulous care of his bikes), and don't have a receipt. They wrote back with a big long message that any number of things could have happened then, just because it was used, and that all kinds of things could have been altered, changed, bent, etc.

    I told them to re-read my emails to them.

    Then I got probably the most hate-filled, inflammatory email I've ever gotten from anybody in my life calling me all kinds of names, and implying I was some kid with nothing better to do than start trouble with people on the internet.

    So I sold the bike.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmargeson
    Yeah, I emailed Ellsworth. First I told them my standover was off by 3", and the BB was off by almost an inch, with the minimun travel fork. They said headset stack height, fork axle-to-crown height, tires can make a difference. I said I had a King headset, Talas 125RLC fork, standard 2.1 tires, all of which are on the small side, and certainly don't raise a bike 3".

    They asked to have it looked at at a bike shop to make sure the frame was straight and not altered by aftermarket parts. I told them I was the head mechanic at a bike shop for 5 years and knew what I was doing, and STILL asked an Ellsworth dealer to look at it anyway and it was fine. (My shop isn't an Ellsworth dealer, but I loved their bikes).

    Then I told them about the travel too. They said I had the wrong shock. I re-iterated that I know what I'm doing, gave them the measurements of the shock, etc.

    They asked me to ship it back with the receipt. I told them honestly that I bought it used from a riding buddy (who also works at a shop and takes meticulous care of his bikes), and don't have a receipt. They wrote back with a big long message that any number of things could have happened then, just because it was used, and that all kinds of things could have been altered, changed, bent, etc.

    I told them to re-read my emails to them.

    Then I got probably the most hate-filled, inflammatory email I've ever gotten from anybody in my life calling me all kinds of names, and implying I was some kid with nothing better to do than start trouble with people on the internet.

    So I sold the bike.
    Sorry to hear it. Did your nasty letter come from the British distributor or from Ellsworth directly? How long ago did it happen? Customer service has been getting good marks lately, at least in America.

    I agree the best measurement method is to use movement of the shock mounts since so many variables go into getting complete travel out of a shock, but it's probably too late to try that now. I did check my Moment and it did get 6 inches with 2.25 inches of link movement.

    Id standover was measured way back on the top tube in a location different from any other manufacturer that I know of. They also used to measure BB height with the bike sagged, also different (and questionable). You can't really spaz about that if you had a chance to see and ride the bike before you bought it, though.
    {Principal Skinner} Hmm. Whoever did this is in very deep trouble.
    {Martin} And a sloppy speller too. The preferred spelling of 'wiener' is w - i - e - n - e - r, although 'e - i' is an acceptable ethnic variant.

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    Does any one know the 'industry standard' for measuring travel? No disrespect to anyone, as I am hardly an expert, but the method(s) above only seem to take into account the linear movement of the axel path. As I understand it, since the axel path arcs, this alone will add to the actual 'travel' that the wheel moves from it's original point to full compression.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbexx
    Does any one know the 'industry standard' for measuring travel? No disrespect to anyone, as I am hardly an expert, but the method(s) above only seem to take into account the linear movement of the axel path. As I understand it, since the axel path arcs, this alone will add to the actual 'travel' that the wheel moves from it's original point to full compression.
    I think the "industry standard" is math. They calculate it and advertise what they calculate. Whether they measure it, who knows.

    But the cord of an arc that radius, is not significantly shorter than the actual arc.

  16. #16
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    Sorry to hear it. Did your nasty letter come from the British distributor or from Ellsworth directly? How long ago did it happen?
    It was from Ellsworth directly. I live in the U.S., sorry for the confusion. This was I believe a year ago exactly. I don't remember the guy's name, it wasn't Tony himself, but one of the framebuilders.

    I did check my Moment and it did get 6 inches with 2.25 inches of link movement.
    I hope so! That's the bike that's taking place of the Id, and fixing all the problems the Id had (BB height was lowered, standover lowered with sloping top tube and added gusset, actual 6" travel)

    Id standover was measured way back on the top tube in a location different from any other manufacturer that I know of.
    That would give my bike the measurement they were posting, I'm sure. However then, as it does now, when you go to their website, click on a bike, then go put your mouse cursor over "standover height" in the Specifications chart, a little red line shows up on the diagram of the bike above it, and the line goes from the ground to the middle of the top tube, not way back. So that's where I measured it. And if they measure BB height with sag factored in, then they should measure travel with sag factored in. In which case my Id got about 3" of usable travel...

    You can't really spaz about that if you had a chance to see and ride the bike before you bought it, though.
    Actually I didn't ride it before I bought it. I figured my friend's raves were enough to trust. I won't make that mistake again. I had ridden with him several times, and couldn't stop looking at the bike (it's still probably my all time favorite bike for looks). Turns out he didn't know the BB was that high, knew the standover was high but didn't say anything, and of course didn't know about the lack of travel because he isn't a tech guy. Heck, I only bothered to check because I'm into that tech stuff, and I've had other frames with less travel than advertised.
    --Basically, I trusted that the most expensive bike frame manufacturer out there would bother to make them to their published spec. Guess I won't make that mistake again either.
    --Besides, I didn't spaz about it, I tried to correct it. When no help or explanation was given, I just sold the bike. I made money on the deal, and now have a Santa Cruz that I'm in love with. It's all good.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmargeson
    ...when you go to their website, click on a bike, then go put your mouse cursor over "standover height" in the Specifications chart, a little red line shows up on the diagram of the bike above it, and the line goes from the ground to the middle of the top tube, not way back...
    Yeah, I had noticed that before. Looks like even the website designer didn't know their measurement technique. I think measuring the standover no further back than the front edge of a forward facing crank arm and measuring the BB unsagged makes more sense as that's easier to reproduce from one bike to the next.

    I'm glad your happier with your current ride.
    {Principal Skinner} Hmm. Whoever did this is in very deep trouble.
    {Martin} And a sloppy speller too. The preferred spelling of 'wiener' is w - i - e - n - e - r, although 'e - i' is an acceptable ethnic variant.

  18. #18
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    TE's method of measuring standover height and BB height are bass ackwards.

    Ellsworth measures standover with the bike in a sagged condition even though no bike is ever at sag when the rider is just standing over the top tube. TE should correct this as it's just plain wrong. Owners need to know the height of the TT when they are standing over it..... not when they're sittin on the seat and the standover means nothing.

    He also measures the BB height with the bike sagged. I don't really have a problem with that except the industry standard is to measure the BB height with he bike un-sagged.

  19. #19
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    So, while I was kind of playing around with my first post, this issue is well known and has existed for some time. That's where the "tire compression, flame flex, and wheel flex" comes from, because if the bike gets the claimed travel, something else must be providing it. Don't forget about the seat padding either!

    When something like this comes up, you'll notice that it's somewhat taboo to talk about it, but it has to be gotten out there. Yes, you should get your money back because the bike doesn't deliver anywhere near the advertised travel. I don't know how sucessfull you'll be, but hopefully you'll have a happy ending.

    Check out the quote in my signature. It's word for word.
    "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.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmargeson
    I had an '02/03 Id. The website claimed 6" travel (at the time) with the Romic shock, and I think 5" with an air shock. I had the Romic. I measured my actual travel at 4.75". That's over an inch off, 20% less than claimed. Ridiculous. Not to mention they said standover would be 31" and it was actually 34" from ground to center of top tube, (directly in the middle between head tube and seat tube, just like the red line that appears on their website when you put your mouse on Standover Height), AND I had the minimum-travel fork recommended, 125mm. It would have been even higher with a 150mm fork, which they recommended a range of 125-150. Oh yeah, the BB height was 14.8", and the website said 14". I felt like I was in a monster truck riding that thing.

    So anyway, here's the most accurate way to measure travel (in the ghetto), and this is how I did it with the ID:

    1) Flip the bike upside down on the ground. Put books or whatever (something SOLID) under the handlebars (or seat) until your front AND rear axles are BOTH equidistant measured from the ground (to make sure the wheel doesn't arc funny as it travels. This way it will travel basically vertically).

    2) Now make note of this measurement from ground to rear axle.

    3) a) Less accurate method: Let air out of shock or remove coil spring from coil shock. Compress shock completely as you can (i.e. push rear wheel down), without compressing the books or moving the bike. Measure from ground to rear axle again. Might need a friend for this, as shocks usually try to come up a little bit from the bottom-out bumper or air that doesn't completely release. Subtract from old measurement, and there's your travel.

    3 b) More accurate method, what I used: Know for sure what your eye-to-eye and stroke length is for your shock. (7.875 and 2.25 for my Romic) Unbolt top shock-mount completely so that swingarm/rear wheel swings completely freely independent of shock. Now, manually move rear wheel down until distance between shock mount on rocker arm (top shock mount) and shock mount on frame (lower shock mount) is exactly "eye-to-eye length minus stroke length". So when this distance is 5.625" in my case, I know I have simulated the shock compressing the full 2.25". Now measure the distance from ground to rear axle, subtract from measurement from step 2, and you're done. Why is this more accurate? You don't have to worry about compressing the rubber bottom-out bumper in the shocks which the companies DO include in their stroke lengths. Also, since you don't have to put your weight into compressing the shock like in step 3a, you don't risk compressing the "books", or shifting the bike around. Indeed, you have to hold the wheel UP so that it doesn't go too FAR down in it's travel!!

    There you go.
    I used the method you describe in 3b--the more accurate one. As I said above, compressing the shock two inches from 7.5" to 5.5" yielded 5.l25" or 130mm of wheel travel.

  21. #21
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    I'm getting around 130mm with my RP3.

  22. #22
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    Going by these last two posts then, the problem must be the shock. When I measured the stroke more accurately it is about 3mm short. Cane Creek say that the bottom-out bumper will compress and maybe give that extra 3mm. I still say that the advertised travel should be easily achievable. My previous SC Superlight gave more than the claimed travel (4") by 1/4" or so and it achieved it easily. It appears that I am getting a similar amount of travel to the SC (which is a race / xc bike) from a 'long travel AM bike' . The only advantage is that I can run longer travel forks. Oh, and it weighs a pound more than the SC, too.

  23. #23
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    Although I really like Cane Creek as a company (they're located near me and have a fantastic local presence in the race and shop scene as well as having solid sponsorship commitments at all national and international levels) very few if any people I know have been satisfied with their air shocks. Great wheels, headset innovation, excellent, as mentioned, involvement in cycling community, etc. - but air shocks are not what they're best at. IMO, get a Fox.
    Mike

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    I've just had a reply from CC and they claim that the last 3mm or so of travel is the bottom out bumper and that all shocks are the same. This would mean that no manufacturers travel claims are true. I go along with Lidarman's theory that these travel figures are largely theoretical. However, I have to repeat what I said earlier about the SC Superlight exceeding its claimed travel.

    If you take the shock off the Id, it is possible to get about 5.75" travel, so I guess it is definitely the shock ......... sure is plush though!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedtriple
    I've just had a reply from CC and they claim that the last 3mm or so of travel is the bottom out bumper and that all shocks are the same. This would mean that no manufacturers travel claims are true. I go along with Lidarman's theory that these travel figures are largely theoretical. However, I have to repeat what I said earlier about the SC Superlight exceeding its claimed travel.

    If you take the shock off the Id, it is possible to get about 5.75" travel, so I guess it is definitely the shock ......... sure is plush though!
    The bottom out bumper will compress down to a fraction of a millimeter in thickness under a hard hit.

    As I recall the Superlight has a falling rate, which means it gets easier to compress the more it compresses. The Ellsworth Id has a moderate rising rate--just the opposite. The rising design is generally considered to be better.

  26. #26
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    FYI travel measurement

    Quote Originally Posted by lidarman
    I think the "industry standard" is math. They calculate it and advertise what they calculate. Whether they measure it, who knows.

    But the cord of an arc that radius, is not significantly shorter than the actual arc.


    VERY simple guys your making it hard. measure from the center of your crank bolt to the center of your rear axle.....and then divide by the shock stroke length.
    EX. my measurement is 447mm / 2.23mm = 200mm or 8"

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigglzrd69
    VERY simple guys your making it hard. measure from the center of your crank bolt to the center of your rear axle.....and then divide by the shock stroke length.
    EX. my measurement is 447mm / 2.23mm = 200mm or 8"
    (it might help to note that you're on a Big Hit and not an Id )

  28. #28
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    I just used that handy formula and discovered the Turner Nitrous gets 11 inches of travel. Bonus.

    I am wondering why his shock only gets a 2.2mm stroke though? Live close to a meth lab, maybe?
    My video techniques can be found in this thread.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigglzrd69
    VERY simple guys your making it hard. measure from the center of your crank bolt to the center of your rear axle.....and then divide by the shock stroke length.
    EX. my measurement is 447mm / 2.23mm = 200mm or 8"
    Too bad your very first post on MTBR is so wrong! (that doesn't include leverage ratio with varies bike-to-bike).

    And btw, with a handle like that, aren't you suppose to be on match.com or yahoopersonals? Is that the same formula you use to measure your cock size too?

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