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  1. #1
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    El Ciclon vs X-5

    I am almost done saving up my pennies, and am itching to finally pull the trigger on a new bike. As the title states I am interested in the El Ciclon, and the X-5. If both of these frames were built up the same, XT drivetrain, with a 140mm fork (still not sure which one), what would be the performance differences? I already have read about the geometries, and standover height. I am mostly concerned with:

    1. Climbing- I am more of a sit, and spin up a climb than stand, and mash the pedals guy. If they are relatively equal, does one feel harder on the legs then the other?

    2. Descending- Is one more confidence inspiring? Stable? For the X-5 owners, do you switch back, and forth with the rear travel option, or do you stick with one?

    3. Air time- I don't go huge, but do like to use as many trail obstacles as I can to catch air. 4-5 ft is about the biggest drop that I hit, so I think that keeps me in the aggressive trailbike area, not freeride.

    4. Cornering- I am assuming that this wouldn't be a moot point due to Ventana's legendary reputation with lateral stiffness.

    I live in Vegas so most of my riding is at Bootleg Canyon ( mostly the XC stuff, with a little of the DH), and Cottonwood ( basic, not too technical singletrack). I am fortunate enough to get up Gooseberry Mesa often, and Shotgun along with Flow, up in Mammoth are pefect examples of what I dream about lapping on my new bike.

    Thanks for letting me be long winded, and for any input that is offered.

  2. #2
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    1. Very similar suspension characteristics. Look at the pivot locations ( and the rear triangle is the same on both).
    2. The X-5 doesn't come with 5/6 rockers, you have to pay extra. I liked riding mine in 6" mode...until I got a Terremoto. I suggest sticking with the amount of travel it is designed with, as SG really designs a balanced bike.
    3. Either
    4. Both.

    Really, the difference in HA and SO are the biggest differences, besides aesthetics. I like mine slack. Make sure your bike has the quad bearing option (is that standard yet?), and choose your shock according to your weight.

    Sure, you can go custom if you want to...Stripes does love to talk about her custom bikes when people ask about ventanas!

  3. #3
    The Bubble Wrap Hysteria
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    The only real difference is do you like traditional looking front triangles or X-frame. The X-frame is a bit more rigid but you can get the Ciclon with a 2" Down tube which will stiffen it up. If standover is a concern for you then the X-frame would be the perfect choice. They both pedal the same.....at least I couldn't tell the difference. I would not worry about switching travel.....5 inch rear travel is the new XC/Trail standard.....Ole'

  4. #4
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    I'd vote Ciclon. Unless you need/want a custom geo. Sorry, but I'd also suggest you consider the Moto.

    Climbing - Not going to be an issue. The stock X geo is steeper but meh. Any weight discrepancies or possible drift would be nominal and most likely be picked up on super steep lines. It's more you than the bike.

    Descending - Ciclon geo. X stiffer front end tho hardly an issue. ( consider full build...)
    Switching out rockers is fine but riding with the intended designed geo. is optimal.

    Air time - Also worth considering custom if you're hitting 4-5 footer's on a regular basis with an X, alt tube set or jump up to the Moto. Take into consideration your growth with the bike. It's going to push you.

    Cornering - NA. Only considerations may be wheelbase and full build.

    I've done the custom route on two frames. First, a semi 5" quad - 16/18 salt. I picked it up just before the Ciclon came out. Love the bike but if starting from scratch, I'd do the '09 Ciclon geo. in an X simply for SO. I'd also suggest a look at the Path build. The geo. looks mighty fun but may be more than you're looking for. http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.ph...8&goto=newpost

    Second, an X frame Moto for SO. It's my go to bike. Built light for a Moto tho still burly and climbs well beyond my expectations.

    Try to demo if you can.

    Enjoy
    I figure the odds be fifty-fifty.

  5. #5
    zod
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    I had to come to this decision too and went Ciclon and do not regret it. I was a bit worried about stand-over being 5'7" tall(short) and almost went X-5 because of that however Sherwood reassured me and even talked me into a medium when I was looking at a small. Stand-over is not an issue. Additionally my bike before the Ciclon was a KHS FR2000 which has an X-bracing like the X-5. I always hated not having a bottle cage for when I didn't want to carry a pack and I'd have to come up with ghetto ways to strap a bottle light battery to my frame. Having a water cage is a big plus you don't think about until you don't have it.

  6. #6
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    Thanks

    Thanks everyone for the input.

    Zod, I am in the same boat, being 5'7" the SO was a big concern, and have been considering the small frame. What fork are you running with the 50mm stem?

    I appreciate everyone's thoughts, and which ever frame I go with, you will definitely see it up in the Set-Up thread.

  7. #7
    IPAs make me wanna puke.
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    If I were you, I would talk with Sherwood. Being 5'7" does NOT tell the whole story. You may be a small, or you may be a medium. How your 67 inches (legs vs. torso) are distributed is KEY. I am 5'7" and know for a fact that a small would feel too cramped for me.

    Stand over is important, but IMO, reach is far more important than stand over for a mountain bike.
    My presence would be the equivalent of painting lamb's blood on your frame, causing the "angel of crash" to nail me instead.

  8. #8
    zod
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    I run a Pike 454. I agree with SVSocrates as well, people tend to get overly caught up on stand-over and I found myself doing that too. When you're 5'7" though you're used to stand-over issues anyhow. What I consider good stand-over others might consider sac-dangerous. I ride a good bit of aggressive trail and like a tight cockpit and that was a big concern too however I find by running a shorty (which I always run anyhow b/c I like the crisp steering) and pushing the seat up in the rails I get the perfect feel on the medium and I think the small would have felt too tight. Thankfully Sherwood set me straight so be sure to talk to him so you get the right size and trust what he says.

  9. #9
    Team Hardcore Cornbread
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    I have never ridden a X-5 but own an El Ciclon. I ride Bootleg, Cottonwood, Blue Diamond every 3 weeks or so while on business. The EC is plenty of bike for any of these trails. It handles any of the drops on the XC stuff with no issues but still is a great bike to go up. I do have to admit though that I have started to enjoy riding at Bootleg more on the single speed but that is a different discussion. Three weeks back I rode out at Gooseberry and I felt like the EC was made for that trail. It loves the tight corners on Hidden Canyon and the ups and downs. When I am back in town, probably a couple of weeks, I would be happy to let you take it for a spin on the trails.
    "Set the gearshift for the high gear of your soul".

  10. #10
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    beer on me

    Phishin Paul- I will be travelling on and off for the next couple of weeks, but if I could make it work to meet up with you, that would be incredible. Of course, no good deed goes without a payback of plenty of beer. Hidden Canyon is awesome, I could ride that forever, it is hard to describe how much fun that section is. Bootleg on a SS, if you are climbing up Skyline, that is very impressive indeed. I need/love my gears for that. Wow!

    Zod- I appreciate your input. For me a 50mm stem is the only way to go.

    I took all of your advice, and gave Sherwood a call. It blows my mind that you can talk with the man who created the bike you are interested in. A med EC is the final decision, and now I wish I had done this a month ago. Thanks again.

  11. #11
    zod
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    rock on!

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