Weighing in under 22 pounds for a full suspension 29er, the La Ruta is just what the all around XC rider is looking for. We could go on and on about the La Ruta but we feel it's better to direct you to our customers who do a great job describing the features and benefits of the bike. Please check out the "Rider Reviews" section to find out more. Custom sizes and angles available.
Strengths: light and fast, strong and durable, versatile-set up single speed or geared
I'm writing this review after owning my LaRuta for about a year. I have an XL with stock sizing. This bike has provided all that I was looking for in my "last" bike. After 3 years of mtn biking, half on a 26" HT and half on a Niner Rip, I finally knew a few things I wanted on this bike. It had to be light and strong and would hopefully accommodate single speed setup. I hit a homerun! This XL bike weighs in between 23.5 lbs. and 25lbs depending on the set up. Crest or Arch wheels, shimano spd pedals, thompson stem and post, elixcir cr brakes, and ritchey carbon bars with canecreek bar ends. Lots of room for weight reduction if wanted, but I like durability! This bike helped make my xc season fun and successful, as well as helped me complete my first NUE race at the Mohican 100. Getting ready for the Cohutta 100 this spring. As an athlete who likes to push a little I also crash hard once in awhile, and the nature of carbon fiber although very light made me hesitate. Unfortunately I will probably break before the ti does! A metals expert talked to me about the flex cycles of ti and it's life span and again, unfortunately, the ti will probably outlive me! The last feature I was looking for but wasn't a high priority was to run it singlespeed. After considerable searching I realized I may be asking too much. But I kept coming back to the LaRuta. Last fall after breaking a DR and riding out singlespeed I decided to get a White Industries Eno hub and break adapter and have ridden 10-15 times on the same Brown County trails I always ride without any issues. I would ride full squish or locked out without any problems! When was the last time you rode fully suspended ss?! My back thanks you Funk! Coming from a 57 year old with bad knees and back! As for the more suptle ride characteristics I will yield to the more experienced riders. All I can say is The LaRuta has delivered. It is light and fast and durable and is a blast to race and ride recreationally. It is great on singletrack whether smooth or rugged and makes the long gravel rides much more comfortable. Thanks to Dave and the Funk team for all the email correspondence with quick replys and helpful tips and suggestions. This made the ordering and buying process smooth and comfortable. This continues as my need for decals and hangers triggers a few comments about my LaRuta and some of my ride experiences. They care and go that extra mile! Thanks Dave. JS
Bike Setup: Crest wheels, Schwalbe Nobby nic, racing ralph, Thomson stem and post, Truvativ ss crank with "30 tooth", Eno hub with shimano 18t, Elixcir cr brakes, Fox 100 RLC fork, fox shock, Ritchie carbon bars, Cane Creek bar ends
I finished my first ride with a sense of euphoria and a smile that still hadn't worn off hours later. Compared to my other bikes (a Moots YBB 26" and 20.5lb Form Prevail 29er Ti hardtail), this bike really is in a completely different league. The trail I rode is pretty rutted at this time of year (from people riding it when the snow hasn't fully melted), and has a ton of rocks sunk into the dirt so even at the best of times it can be a pretty rough ride. But on the La Ruta it honestly felt like riding on a carpet. In trail-mode the rear shock had no discernible bob, even when standing, yet the ride was so plush and comfortable it was hard for me to believe. The handling was also incredibly stable and precise: point it where you want to go and the bike does it without you even having to think. I'm not sure if this is due to the really active suspension, the precise alignment, a good choice of geometry... or a combination of all three... but it is a blast to ride fast. In fact I scared myself a few times in tight sections when I realized how much faster I was going than I had thought. I really can't wait to get some more miles under my belt on this bike. If you're interested in a really clean, light, bullet-proof full suspension frame, I highly suggest you get in touch with Funk.
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a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: December 31, 2012
Strengths: Very light and very stable at all conditions, very sure steering, ideal tool for all XC conditions
I am a long time XC rider, who has been riding many types and makes of mountain bikes, for the last 20 years, riding the extensive variety of the Israeli terrains. Although Israel is small in size, it has all types of terrains, from forested high mountains, to rocky hills, vast dry deserts and sand dunes. So I have always tried to get the best bike, suitable for all these riding conditions.
Through my experience, using Hardtails, Full Suspension and Softail bikes, I have come to the conclusion that the Softail rear suspension, coupled a Lefty front, is the ideal setup for a XC bike, making for the most low-weight, efficient, high performance and comfortable mountain bike. So the bike I have been using during the past years has been a custom built Titanium frame with Softail rear suspension, having 1.25" rear wheel travel, with 26" wheels.
In recent years, the 29" wheels have become more and more popular, and I have tried some bikes with these large tires. However have found that for a short rider like me, their drawbacks outweigh their benefits. So when the 650B wheel size came more and more popular, I have tried them and found that they are the best all around size for XC riding. With that in mind I have decided to look for my "next" bike, which must have all my required features: low weight Titanium frame, 650B wheels, Softail type rear suspension and Lefty front. Only the Funk LaRuta was found to have it all! And more… its rear suspension has not only 1.25" travel, but a full 3.0" travel, and the Lefty 29" combined with the 650B wheel, gives it added benefits.
Last month I have visited the Funk team in Denver, and took delivery of the fully assembled bike and found it to have very simple efficient design, beautifully crafted, weighing only 9.6 kg. for the complete, ready to ride, bike.
Back in Israel, I have put it for ride-test in the various terrain/ trail conditions, and it has been performing beautifully and beyond my expectations:
- Extremely fast & stable climbing ability, much better than 26" bikes – unmatched!
- Unbelievable Downhill stability , even in narrow single tracks, not known before.
This is also due to the smart use of the Lefty 29" fork with the 650B wheel.
- Extremely fast and stable feeling on long flat XC rides.
- The rear Flexplate suspension is extremely efficient, comfortable and very stable, giving a feeling of having 4" travel.
- The front Lefty 29" with the 650B tire, gives a stable feeling of 29" tire, however the steering performance is equal to 26" tires. Amazing !!
- This 650B LaRuta has proven to be the ultimate multi-purpose bike for XC riding all the way to single tracks with tight switch backs.
In addition to making the best XC bike on the market today, I must commend the Funk team, for their very responsive, friendly and professional handling of my enquiries and formal order. Their support is a good example and bench mark, for good and pleasurable busin
Similar Products Used: Seven Teres softail, Turner O2, Seven IMX
Bike Setup: Full XTR transmission and brakes, Lefty 29" shock,
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: July 17, 2012
Strengths: Light, great geometry, looks unique and sweet, fantastic quality, great customer service from small shop. Where else can you email the builder back and forth...
Weaknesses: Not really any.
Oh my god, this bike ROCKS!!
Took over 10 minutes off a 1hr 10min climb/grind - 10 minute improvement is HUGE. The thing is so fast in the straights and holds very well in the technical.
I wasn't sure how it would hold, the climb is sometimes loose shale, sometimes boulders, sometimes powder in switchbacks. Normally i come out of my pedals a dozen times due to lack of traction, picking a bad line through boulders, or tiredness. Even with the racing tires the thing held like a champion and in the end I came out of my pedals 1/2 as much. 10 minute improvement, and coming out of cleats 50% less times is massive improvement.
I was surprised how versatile a tool it is. In the past i'd switch off between a ridged 9r and a boulder-hoping-built nomad. What is so amazing is that the Funk La Ruita can do both what both those bike were good at, and in most cases do much better. I've found since the La Ruta is in the stable that I'm riding no other bikes: to the store, on the fire road, up the grind, and down the technical. I can't imagine a better single tool for everything.
I got the bike built ( props to the guys at Olympic in Tahoe City for doing it) in 48 hours - weighing in at 22.8lbs with XTR pedals and tubeless.
Props to Dave for all the help back @Funk.
If you want a bike that can do it all and do it wicked fast, this is it.
Strengths: Super light and efficient, custom geometry and fit is a huge benefit!
The Funk La Ruta is a super light, efficient, simple, but very effective cross country full suspension design. The combination of 29er wheels and 3+ inches of travel make for a smooth and light ride in virtually all conditions. Make no mistake, this bike does not ride like your typical softail rather it is true full suspension.
The McPherson strut suspension is very plush and active for descending, firm and efficient but still active for climbing in pro-pedal mode, and it rides like a really nice Ti hardtail when fully locked-out. The latest platform shocks help this simple design work really well in a variety of cross country and trail riding situations. I used the Fox Float RLT shock with a high volume sleeve to achieve a somewhat linear spring curve that allows me to use virtually all the suspension on most rides even though I only weigh 150 pounds. I’ve owned a lot of bikes with sophisticated suspension systems, including four-bar, VPP, and DW Link, but it is truly surprising how effective this simple pivotless La Ruta suspension works. While there is some slight pedal bob that is noticeable when the shock is totally open, it is virtually unnoticeable when the pro-pedal is engaged and it is still very active for dealing with rocks and roots.
The frame is surprisingly stiff laterally when cornering and tracking through singletrack and rock gardens. The solid Ti pivot plate at the bottom bracket adds considerable stiffness to the rear end of the bike without the need for a seatstay bridge. Headtube gussets and oversized top and down tubes add considerable rigidity to the front end of the frame as well. With a radically sloping top tube, the frame also has good standover clearance for a 29er.
One of the best features of the La Ruta is the option to build it with custom geometry. I used a fairly relaxed headtube angle of 70 degrees (matched to a 46MM offset Reba fork) and short chainstays. This combination makes for a very stable descending bike that rails corners and is still nimble through switchbacks and tight technical sections. It has tons of rear tire clearance for high-volume tires in super muddy conditions as well. My frame, built with a double-butted down tube, 30.9 seatpost tube, headtube gussets, Fox RLT shock with a large volume sleeve, and the seatpost collar weigh only 4.4 pounds. This allowed me to build-up a sub 22.5 pound racing bike with real tires and reasonably durable components.
The La Ruta has a really wide sweetspot for riding conditions. It’s a light cross-country racing bike that you love to ride day after day while you’re training or just out having fun. With heavier duty wheels and tires it can also serve as a great trail bike during the off-season. As there are no pivots to maintain, it is quiet and maintenance free as well. The titanium welds are truly a work of art, and the craftsmanship that goes into the frame build really stands out. Finally, the durability of the titanium design leaves me worry free when riding in really rocky technical sections. This is easily the best bike I’ve ever owned.
Strengths: FULL TI CONSTRUCTION
Weaknesses: BUILT TO ORDER SO UNABLE TO TRY BEFORE. NOT REALLY WEAKNESS THOUGH IF USED TO CUSTOM BUILDS
THIS BIKE WAS EVERYTHING I HOPED IT WOULD BE. IT'S LIGHT, FAST, AND SO VERSATILE. IT'S IMPORTANT TO NOTE THOUGH THAT THIS REVIEW IS FOR A CUSTOM 26 VERSION OF A FRAME THAT IS NORMALLY PRODUCED IN A 29R FORMAT. EVEN SO, THIS IS A DESIGN THAT LENDS ITSELF PERFECTLY TO EITHER WHEEL SIZE. IN FACT, THE DESIGN IS SO SIMPLE AND ELEGANT WITH PERFECT MACHINING AND WELDS THAT IT EASILY MAKES ONLY 80MM TRAVEL ENOUGH. HOW VERSATILE YOU ASK? WELL, AT 4.3 LBS W/SHOCK IT CAN EASILY BE USED AS A TRUE FS ULTRALIGHT PROJECT. WITH A MORE REALISTIC BUILD THE TI CONSTRUCTION CAN EASILY HANDLE ANY TRAIL A SEASONED RIDER WOULD THROW AT IT. OR IF AN OCCASIONAL LIFT ASSIST PARK IS YOUR THING, THIS FRAME EASILY DEVOURS A 2.35 NEVEGAL WITH ROOM TO FIT A 2.5. HOW MANY XCOUNTRY FRAMES CAN DO THAT? I'VE DONE 30+ MILE ROAD RIDES, ROCKY ROOTED SINGLETRACKS, AND MY FAV TRAILS AT HIGHLAND PARK WITH NOTHING MORE THAN DIFFERENT TIRE CHANGES. SURE, IT WOULD BE BETTER IF I HAD THREE DIFFERENT BIKES BUT WHEN I CAN HAVE ONE THAT DOES ALL THIS AS WELL AS IT DOES, IT MAKES THE 3495$ FRAME PRICE AN EASY GO. SO NOW TO HOW IT RIDES. TI IS THE MOST FORGIVING CHOICE OF MATERIAL AND REALLY IT FEELS MORE LIKE A GOOD 100MM BIKE DOES BECAUSE OF IT. BUT IT DOESN'T FEEL MUSHY OR BLOW THROUGH ITS TRAVEL EITHER LIKE MOST DO. IT'S A FIRM RESPONDING 80MM AND RAMPS UP QUICKLY NEAR ITS END TO AVOID BOTTOMING OUT. THIS IS CLEARLY DUE TO THE RP23'S BOOST VALVE THAT COMES IN AT THE END OF ITS STROKE. BUT SMALL BUMP SENSITIVITY IS STILL VERY GOOD FROM KHASHIMA AND THAT THE LEAF SPRING MOVEMENT IS SUPER SMOOTH. IF YOU DISCONNECT THE SHOCK FROM ITS UPPER MOUNT THERE IS ZERO JERKINESS TO THE LEAF WHICH DOESN'T COUNTERACT THE EFFORTS OF THE SHOCK. ON THE TRAIL ITS SO SEEMLESS AS YOU JUST FLY THROUGH YOUR LINE CHOICE.ON SMOOTHER GROUND WITH PROPEDAL ENGAGED ITS AS EFFICIENT AS ANY TI HARDTAIL I EVER OWNED. THIS SIMPLE MAC-STRUT DESIGN DOESNT HAVE ALL THE FANCINESS AS ALL THE OTHER LINKED SYSTEMS OUT THERE BUT DOESNT REALLY NEED IT EITHER. WITH PROPEDAL OFF THERE IS SOME BOB BUT WITH EVEN THE LIGHTEST PP SETTING IT VANISHES INTO BLISSFUL EFFICIENCY. SO HOW DOES IT LOOK? IT'S ELEGANT BURNISHED FINISH AND STRAIGHT LINES ARE TIMELESS AS IT SHADOWS THE REAL MAGIC OF THE PIVOTLESS LEAF. I HAD MINE BUILT WITHOUT THE SEATTUBE BRACE OF THE 29RS SO ITS SUPER SLEEK. IT'S ELEGANCE THROUGH SIMPLICITY ALSO HAS ANOTHER HIDDEN BENEFIT. COMPONENTS MOUNT EFFORTLESSLY AND CABLES ROUTE WITH A STRAIGHTNESS THAT PROMOTES FIT AND FUNCTION. DON'T GIVE IN TO COMPLICATED, LONG LEGGED, CARBON SHOWROOM DESIGNS THAT WILL BE UPDATED OR OBSELETE IN A YEAR. GIVE A STRONG CONSIDERATION TO HOW MUCH TRAVEL YOU REALLY NEED AND HOW TIMELESS TI AND SIMPLICITY REALLY ARE. GIVE FUNK AN HONEST LOOK.
Similar Products Used: CUSTOM BUILDS FROM SEVEN AND TITUS
Bike Setup: XTR,THOMPSON,FOX F/R ('12 RP23)
a Cross Country Rider
from Prosper, TX
Date Reviewed: October 19, 2011
Strengths: Simple and efficient travel. Light weight. Beautiful craftsmanship and end product. 1.5" head tube flexibility. I expect longevity to be a strength as well.
Weaknesses: Its a little on the pricey side, but Ti isn't cheap no matter who you're buying from.
The La Ruta is the perfect bike for me and its been at the top of my wish list for about 5 years now. I've ridden a La Ruta in the mountains of Colorado where it was an exceptional climber (loose and steep and fire roads) and more of a downhiller than I am. I've also been riding it on Texas XC type trails where it is agile in the tight trees and soaks up the roots. By adding this bike to what was a collection, I'm now down to 2 mountain bikes because the La Ruta is the right bike for so many places. I also don't have the concerns about having the bike out of the rotation for maintenance.
The La Ruta is lighter than my 1x10 carbon hardtail, more travel than my Moots Mooto-x YBB and handles as well as my Niner Jet9. The flat stays with no pivots (read little to no maintenance) are just gravy. When looking at the frame in pictures its hard to believe the amount of travel you get. My favorite part is I don't hear or feel the suspension working.
The welds. I was amazed! I had this frame up next to my old Moots and couldn't believe how similar the welds were. Speaking of Moots, 2oz in weight difference between similar sized La Ruta and Mooto-x YBB. Not dogging the YBB, I loved that frame.
It was also a real pleasure dealing directly with the folks at Funk. Great folks that really believe in their product and in my case went out of their way to address whatever concerns I had before purchase.
Similar Products Used: Niner Jet9 (1st and 2nd gen), Turner Sultan, Intense Spider29, GF 292, Pivot 429, Moots Mooto-x YBB
Bike Setup: SRAM XX drivetrain, Enve wheels, stem, post. Formula R1 brakes, SID WC fork, Fizik Gobi saddle
a Weekend Warrior
from Burlington Ontario Canada
Date Reviewed: September 13, 2011
Strengths: Incredibly light frame being out of Titanium. Climbs like a mountain goat with the McPherson strut type of rear suspension it handles all the lumps and bumps you can throw at it. The quality of workmanship is stellar also dealing with Funk directly being able to specify what you want. I had mine made with an eccentric bottom bracket to take belt drive with a Nuvinci hub so needed special cable routing and this was done expertly.
Weaknesses: None so far,in my first race placed 3rd in a 24 hour event (admittedly my team mates picked up my slack)doing my second race this weekend.
If you want a bike that handles precisely where you point it, that rolls fast over any terrain and is light and strong and made to your specifications then this is the bike for you.