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  1. #1
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    how to make ripcord more dh capable

    So my 10 yr old has been running his transition ripcord on some dh stuff and I want to make it more dh capable. Biggest complaint is the fork kills his hands- rock shox silver 30. I notice he gets bounced around quite a bit in the technical rock gardens. Budget is tough since he will be in a small adult bike soon. Bike is currently stock and he does do trail rides as well so don't want to overdue it on weight. I have read other posts and they seem to be making the ripcord more trail friendly

    -any fork suggestions that would be able to keep up on dh stuff. Possibly qr so I would not have to change out wheels


    -has 2.3 kenda kinetics. Was thinking maybe 2.4-2.5 dhr would give him a bit more stability

    any ideas?

  2. #2
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    Jnr runs a 2.5 Maxxis DH on the front of his Norco with SID's
    I'm assuming you already used the spacers to put the bars up ....
    A lightly bigger riser might also help...

    A year ago I found finding both straight steerer and QR in any smaller travel (and A/C) forks was a real pain... and ended up with a external headset on the bottom to take a tapered fork... in our case I went Hope and gained 12mm whereas CC add 10mm ...

    The Norco is a bit larger frame but adding 10mm hasn't affected it adversely and I'd stick another 10mm... so you could probably consider a 120mm fork with a straight steerer SID or Fox32 ??

    POAH's lad had a Ripcord and outgrew it before an adult small... so if you go to a 26" next you could take the fork with you and put the Ripcord back to stock to sell?... I'm hoping Jnr can go from the Norco to a 27.5... but we'll see.

  3. #3
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    Getting bounced around might be more than just extra travel needed. The Ripcord rear shock, as I've been told at least, isn't tuned very well for kids...however if your kid is 10 he might be heavy enough. Regardless, it might be worth considering getting the suspension tuned for his weight. My 6yro just did 3 straight days of DH racing a couple weeks ago and never complained about his hands. He is on a Spawn hard tail with a plush 80mm. Makes me think getting stuff reshimmed might help you.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by svinyard View Post
    The Ripcord rear shock, as I've been told at least, isn't tuned very well for kids...
    Not actually seen one but if he's getting full travel or not would be a start.
    I know on the Norco the ML3 tune works really really well with my 8yr old who is pretty skinny (at least if you ignore thighs) ... but that must be leverage ratio...

    POAH will be the guy to ask.... as his lad ran a Ripcord and He'd not hesitate getting a tune if needed.

    Of course some people are just more prone to hand/arms ...somewhat independent of their arm/hand ... though I also wonder if some people just also grip too tight?
    I follow a really good trials rider on youtube who does also does Enduro (he's a good mate of Danny Macaskill) and he's always suffering arm pump... but of course when he's doing crazy trials stuff he's probably gripping way harder and probably carries that into his Enduro??? Brake position and adjustment as well??

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by kotajack View Post
    Biggest complaint is the fork kills his hands- rock shox silver 30. I notice he gets bounced around quite a bit in the technical rock gardens.
    One thing to check is that the rebound adjustment on both fork and rear isn't set too fast, else will definitely feel like he's getting bounced around regardless of how good the fork is.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by CeUnit View Post
    One thing to check is that the rebound adjustment on both fork and rear isn't set too fast, else will definitely feel like he's getting bounced around regardless of how good the fork is.
    I meant to mention this as well. This might be actually the issue. Not sure how tunable it is on the bike tho.

    Fwiw it's a capable bike. Local 8yro on my kids team is jumping higher than my SUV on the freeride lines. It handles it really well and it's not all steep landings either

  7. #7
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    The fork is a rock shox 30 silver. I have brought the air pressure down enough so that he is getting close to full travel on the runs he is doing. I have tried different pressures and seem to have settled on one that works. There are only 4 rebound clicks on the adjuster.
    I have tried them all and he likes it best with full rebound

    The rear monarch does not seem to bottom hard when I am riding behind him. I have set it at 20%,30%, 40% sag. He does use full travel. We have slowed the rebound down so he is not getting bucked off the bike etc...



    He ran an older grom hit last year and did not have any issues for dh. I sold it, I should have kept that bike. He couldn't pedal it on trails and I didn't think he would need two. I guess I would like to see the ripcord have some bigger tires than the skinny 2.3's and a better fork. I think that would go a long way. Most good forks need 15mm hubs which would mean a better hub or wheelset. Then the $$$ adds up and he grows out of it. Trying to get the season out of it then it gets handed down to the next one


    Good points on going with a tapered headtube and larger headset for future use.- Thank you. I notice that the spawn uses a x fusion velvet. They can be found in qr setups. Any idea on how well they handle dh type stuff? The high speed quick chatter stuff is probraby the issue with the hand pain. Going to try to find some 2.5 maxxis and maybe that will give him a bit more cush

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by kotajack View Post
    The fork is a rock shox 30 silver. I have brought the air pressure down enough so that he is getting close to full travel on the runs he is doing. I have tried different pressures and seem to have settled on one that works. There are only 4 rebound clicks on the adjuster.
    I have tried them all and he likes it best with full rebound

    The rear monarch does not seem to bottom hard when I am riding behind him. I have set it at 20%,30%, 40% sag. He does use full travel. We have slowed the rebound down so he is not getting bucked off the bike etc...



    He ran an older grom hit last year and did not have any issues for dh. I sold it, I should have kept that bike. He couldn't pedal it on trails and I didn't think he would need two. I guess I would like to see the ripcord have some bigger tires than the skinny 2.3's and a better fork. I think that would go a long way. Most good forks need 15mm hubs which would mean a better hub or wheelset. Then the $$$ adds up and he grows out of it. Trying to get the season out of it then it gets handed down to the next one


    Good points on going with a tapered headtube and larger headset for future use.- Thank you. I notice that the spawn uses a x fusion velvet. They can be found in qr setups. Any idea on how well they handle dh type stuff? The high speed quick chatter stuff is probraby the issue with the hand pain. Going to try to find some 2.5 maxxis and maybe that will give him a bit more cush
    turn the rebound down on the fork

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by svinyard View Post
    turn the rebound down on the fork
    did that, ran it in all positions. have it in the slowest rebound now
    Getting feedback on suspension is tough from a 10 yr old
    I dont think he will be happy til he has his own fox 40

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kotajack View Post
    did that, ran it in all positions. have it in the slowest rebound now
    Getting feedback on suspension is tough from a 10 yr old
    I dont think he will be happy til he has his own fox 40
    LOL. Little groms man. Once they figure out what's hot, they want that 1k$ fork. Good luck man. 👍

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by kotajack View Post
    I guess I would like to see the ripcord have some bigger tires than the skinny 2.3's and a better fork. I think that would go a long way. Most good forks need 15mm hubs which would mean a better hub or wheelset.

    Good points on going with a tapered headtube and larger headset for future use.- Thank you. I notice that the spawn uses a x fusion velvet. They can be found in qr setups. Any idea on how well they handle dh type stuff? The high speed quick chatter stuff is probraby the issue with the hand pain. Going to try to find some 2.5 maxxis and maybe that will give him a bit more cush
    Yeah the Ripcord frame is quite small... based on what POAH did not quite big enough to go straight to an adult XXS... I seem to remember one of the boutique companies was using the X-Fusion but in any case you will need the fork tuned for his weight so I'd ask the company you'd choose (unless you are into messing with fork internals).

    You might be lucky and score a old stock Fox32 or SID... which will be stiff enough for their weight. We have a 9mm axle in place of the 'traditional QR'... so it fits the same forks/wheels but then I'm hoping the Norco is big enough to move him to adult XXS after and not to have to do a 26" .... If your hub isn't convertible then you might find a used front wheel.. but its probably like looking for hens teeth.

    I was looking at PB yesterday evening and saw a Lil Shredder Phenom in DH race form and they had fitted a 140mm Fox Talas... (You can google and see a few past sales etc.) so if its for DH only perhaps you could go past the 120mm???


    Then the $$$ adds up and he grows out of it. Trying to get the season out of it then it gets handed down to the next one
    At least you have a next one to hand it down to
    A year ago I struggled finding the QR and straight steerer but when I found one it was 50% reduced.. the mail order internet giants however keep seemingly finding these.. or acceptable variations of at least .. if you go with being able to use an external HS you have twice the options ... (or you are cutting your options less)...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kotajack View Post
    Bike is currently stock and he does do trail rides as well so don't want to overdue it on weight. I have read other posts and they seem to be making the ripcord more trail friendly

    -any fork suggestions that would be able to keep up on dh stuff. Possibly qr so I would not have to change out wheels


    -has 2.3 kenda kinetics. Was thinking maybe 2.4-2.5 dhr would give him a bit more stability

    any ideas?
    Aside from finding a used Fox 120mm 1 1/8 straight steerer 9mm q/r on Ebay (they exist) - if you want to buy new then here is the fork to get:
    Performance Series 32 FLOAT 26 120 GRIP 3-Position Lever | Bike Forks | FOX
    (since you said he trail rides it also) - - 140mm would chopper that bike out too much IMHO.

    9mm straight steerer, 120mm travel, 9mm q/r part number is 910-20-600

    Biggest upgrade you can do on the stock Ripcord bike (in no particular order) is
    -Wheelset/tires
    -Fork
    -Cranks (NX 155mm cranks long and heavy!!!)

    The new Hans Dampf's on 24x2.35 look pretty sweet. Anyone pick up a set yet?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by GSJ1973 View Post
    Biggest upgrade you can do on the stock Ripcord bike (in no particular order) is
    -Wheelset/tires
    -Fork
    -Cranks (NX 155mm cranks long and heavy!!!)
    I'd have put exactly the same list for the Norco 24....
    The new Hans Dampf's on 24x2.35 look pretty sweet. Anyone pick up a set yet?

    Oooh, didn't realise they were going to do a 24!!!
    (I didn't even check especially since they discontinued the Fat Albert Front)

  14. #14
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    Hmm,

    This is a timely post for me.
    I was thinking of renting a Ripcord for my 7 year old(60lbs), when we are in Whistler Bikepark this summer.
    Her own bike is a Riprock 24 Expert, with the Suntour 70mm air fork. But, it has a 2.4 DHF 60 tpi set up tubeless on the front. 2.8 Roller tire tubeless on the rear. 1.5 degree offset headset(plus external cup, so slackened almost 2* from stock).

    Still, itís a hardtail, and the Ripcord has almost 50% more front travel, as well as rear wheel travel.

    What do you guys think? Sheís no phenom, just a solid little rider who likes moderate speed and some slightly technical lines.
    I want her to be:
    1. Safe
    2. Comfy/not sore/less tired after the long runs
    3. Fast (as long as can stay in control)
    4. Able to tackle more technical trails

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tjaard View Post
    Hmm,

    This is a timely post for me.
    I was thinking of renting a Ripcord for my 7 year old(60lbs), when we are in Whistler Bikepark this summer.
    Her own bike is a Riprock 24 Expert, with the Suntour 70mm air fork. But, it has a 2.4 DHF 60 tpi set up tubeless on the front. 2.8 Roller tire tubeless on the rear. 1.5 degree offset headset(plus external cup, so slackened almost 2* from stock).

    Still, itís a hardtail, and the Ripcord has almost 50% more front travel, as well as rear wheel travel.

    What do you guys think? Sheís no phenom, just a solid little rider who likes moderate speed and some slightly technical lines.
    I want her to be:
    1. Safe
    2. Comfy/not sore/less tired after the long runs
    3. Fast (as long as can stay in control)
    4. Able to tackle more technical trails
    Is the alternative to take her RipRock on the trip to Whistler? If that's the alternative, by all means, rent her a Ripcord, Norco, Spawn while you're there. She'll have way more fun. Which means you'll have way more fun.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by SactoGeoff View Post
    Is the alternative to take her RipRock on the trip to Whistler? If that's the alternative, by all means, rent her a Ripcord, Norco, Spawn while you're there. She'll have way more fun. Which means you'll have way more fun.
    Yes, we will be bringing her modded Spesh Riprock on the trip. So the choice is using that or renting the Transition Ripcord or Norco Kids bike while we are in Whistler.
    Does anyone rent Spawn there? That would be even nicer

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve-XtC View Post
    Yeah the Ripcord frame is quite small...
    Hey Steve, is the Ripcord frame that small? It's bigger than the Norco Fluid FS 4.2 in wheelbase, reach, and top tube. Backend is a little shorter but that's hip these days. I think it may be about the same as the Maxwell too. Or a tad bigger. Curious if I was missing something. I'm still trying to figure out our next bike. The kid seems to think the Rokkusutta is the jam but it's a bigger bike in travel and length too.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by svinyard View Post
    Hey Steve, is the Ripcord frame that small? It's bigger than the Norco Fluid FS 4.2 in wheelbase, reach, and top tube. Backend is a little shorter but that's hip these days. I think it may be about the same as the Maxwell too. Or a tad bigger. Curious if I was missing something. I'm still trying to figure out our next bike. The kid seems to think the Rokkusutta is the jam but it's a bigger bike in travel and length too.
    Iím mainly going off what I remember trying to buy a little over a year ago. I donít know if models changed but I was comparing the older Fluids to buying a new Ripcord frame. Some complex availability issues and buying the ripcord frame was impossible in Europe at the time.

    My lasting impression was that it all worked out .. and the Norco should last a bit longer and when we got it the frame is huge compared to his XC 24.... he wouldnít have fit the bike the year before ... but Iíve still not seen a Ripcord in the flesh to compare.




    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tjaard View Post
    Does anyone rent Spawn there? That would be even nicer
    Whistler Village Sports has a couple Spawns. Best to reserve one ahead of time. They also put Zee brake on them which is a huge plus. Who has the Ripcord rental? Didn't see anywhere.

  20. #20
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    Get the fork and shock tuned for his weight - made the biggest single difference to the handling of the bike.

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