Ellsworth Dare Frameset

4.64/5 (14 Reviews)
MSRP : $2495.00


Product Description

Full suspension, DH or freeride, Easton tubing, 7" rear wheel travel.


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Reviews 1 - 14 (14 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:2
Submitted by john doe from phoenix, az

Date Reviewed: August 23, 2002

Strengths:    nice ride great design

Weaknesses:    WEAK WEAK Frame and no product support for a used frame.

Bottom Line:   
this bike was in clean perfect condition when I purchased it from a shop owner. it had no dents and no scratches (except chainstay). i weigh 200lbs and have ridden other bikes of less praise than this one gets. i did a small 3' jump at 25-30mph and broke the frame between the bottom bracket and the link pivot. the tubing was thinner than a dime and not the same thickness all the way around. ellsworth said to bad buy a new frame from us at a discounted $1800.00. WHY would I if it is only going to break in 2-3 years. shouldn't the manufacturers of these aluminum frame high dollar extreme bikes let everyone know that if you use this frame throw it away after 1 hard season. this frame is $2300.00 or so retail. if that last 1 year that is almost $200.00 a month for a frame. i could buy a nice used car for that monthly payment. i am not sure but i also think i could go buy a 1981 yz 250 for $700.00 or less jump it off some big jumps for 2 years and not break a thing. that is messed up..

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   trail 100

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $600.00

Purchased At:   used frame

Similar Products Used:   trek vrx 400, khs fxt LT, gt sts dh.

Bike Setup:   sun mammoths, hope c2 discs, azonic 454's, hannebrink zzyzx, mofo dh 2.3 tires.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by YaMon Lee a Weekend Warrior from Jamaica

Date Reviewed: April 27, 2002

Strengths:    Looks great, I have never bottomed out this bike.

Weaknesses:    Weight, but it is bulletproof.

Bottom Line:   
This bike is amazing. I have ridden it for over a year to give it a proper review. I have setup my bike for light freeriding. I weight about 150 pounds and do not do any drops over 4 ft. The bike weights an amazing 26 1/2 pounds and could be lighter, but......what is the point in switching the Stratos, Zokes and Maguras. Since the weight of the Disc's have come down, I may replace with the new Spinergy wheels and the B4's or Martas w/ AL Disc's. That should bring it down to about 26 pounds. Anyways, the frame weights around 9 pounds and that is the small. It climbs with minimal bobbing and if you do not mind the weight...is probably one of the best all around bikes out there. The fun part is when the trail turns downhill, this thing is sooo smooth and cushy. It will elevate your riding 2 notches. If you can find one, buy it. I got lucky and bought one used from a guy that must have ridden it 3 times. He was from LA and must have been a poser because it had a teeny little scratch on the anodized rear that a magic marker took care of. It was PERFECT and I bought it for $1,000. Man...what a deal. I also have a super light Klein mantra, it weights about 23 pounds and is just sitting in the garage. It has all the good parts....CK wheels, lots of Carbon and Ti. About the only time it gets ridden now is if someone new wants to ride and does not have a bike or if the Dare is absolutely dirty and I need to ride NOW. Anyways, the bike is perfect in my mind.

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Favorite Trail:   Blue Mountain

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   Used

Similar Products Used:   N/A

Bike Setup:   Carbon Crankset, King wheelset w/517s, WCS Stem, Carbon bars, 9.0SL Derailleur System, Ti everything, Bebop Pedals, IRC Mythos w/Stans System, Stratos Expert, 2001 Z1, Magura Brakes.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:2
Submitted by dave . a Downhiller from new zealand

Date Reviewed: September 27, 2001

Strengths:    light (for a dh rig) but strong. air assist rear shock gives mega adjustability (no need for multiple springs). awesome build quality and attention to detail. rides like most other 7" dh rigs plush as a plush thing. u can set this bike up for hard out dh racing or make it a massive travel freerider. with the right set it could be ridden up not to badly.

Weaknesses:    the pivot bolts bolt directly into the frame. so... if a bolt comes loose and u dont pick it up for a while the frame threads can be damaged. wide lower swing arm stays
make fitting a chain guide difficult. ( i had to hack into my mrp to make it fit) max rear tyre 2.5. could be a little slacker heas angle for dh.


Bottom Line:   
i have this bike set up for dh hill racing not freeride.
so... its super soft with big tyres at low pressure (10-15 psi).

i have tried a several other downhill bike and havent ridden one that feels better than this.

dammit writers block!

if u want an brillaint dh frame and something thats a little different buy one of these it wont dissapoint.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   lots

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $1300.00

Purchased At:   second hand

Similar Products Used:   specialized dh shaun palmer fsr. giant atx dh, foes slammer
kiwi (like a turner) gt lobo


Bike Setup:   7" boxers, hayes hydro, dee-max, race face, 9 speed, mrp. intense 2.7 and maxxis high roller 2.5

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Steve Abbott a Cross Country Rider from Sun Valley CA USA

Date Reviewed: January 3, 2001

Strengths:    Climbs pretty well
Great downhill



Weaknesses:    none

Bottom Line:   
Best all around free ride bike I have ridden from the list above. It climbs as well as the GT in most situations and alot better then the Mountain Cycle and Intense. As far as downhill it's better then all the bikes I've owned. The rear end is softer and the steering is very precise with a 5" fork.

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Favorite Trail:   Mt. Wilson area

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $2000.00

Purchased At:   Beyond Bikes

Similar Products Used:   96&98GT LTS Mountain cycle 6" travel Intense Uzzi DH 6" travel

Bike Setup:   xt xtr componets, Bomber Z1 CR, Triple chain rings, V-brakes
30lbs. Stratos shock 350lb spring.105lb air pressure. 150lb rider.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Michael from Southeast PA

Date Reviewed: December 3, 2000

Strengths:    This is a review on the 2000 model Ellsworth Dare.
I figure it is about time for the review.

In April, my SC. Bullit got stolen. That was one of the
best things that ever happened to me. Home Owner's
insurance covered it and I got what I always dreamt for,
the Dare.
My bike set up for DH w/ chain guide over 10lbs heavier
than my bullit still outclimbed it!!!!
I have made it up some
scetchy accents and it weighs in around 38 lbs (DH wheels
and tires) It is the best freeride bike out there as
the only other one that might come close is a Turner RFX.
It can indeed go down too! Not saying it is a world
cup racer but it does decend awesome. The wheelbase is
nice and tight with the proper fork. It can handle
drops as well (did a 10footer at mtn creek)
Brake jack? Nope. the way the linkage is designed
there is no noticeable brake jack.
I rode it this summer downhilling and did well in sport
class-first year racing.
After the season I started riding on my XC nite
rides and kept up my buddies on 24 lb hardtails and
my bike weighed 38lbs! Well, total rubber-tubes/tires
is over 7.5lbs.
Ellsworth Customer rocks too! Michael and George are
awesome to deal with. I always end up talkin with
those guys for at least 10minutes just shootin the poop.



Weaknesses:    Weaknesses... Riiiiiiiiiiiiigggggghhhhhhtt.


Bottom Line:   
If you want a bike that you can ride with your XC
buddies during the week, Race or freeride on the weekend then buy a DARE!!
Read the ultimate freeride bike.

I am getting the 2001 model for next years DH season,
can't wait.

michael

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Anything with rocks/drops

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $2449.00

Similar Products Used:   S.C. bullit-extensively
ridden a S.C. Super8, Chumba... but nothing besides
the Bullit over 6 months in its class.


Bike Setup:   DH-Hope O2, 321, RF NS cranks, Helix Expert, Superstar 8.0
for DH racing
Freeriding (season is over) Still DH tires but
with a Marz z1Qr20

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Adam Stein a Downhiller from Holbrook, NY, USA

Date Reviewed: October 11, 2000

Strengths:    Nice looking. Light

Weaknesses:    Swingarm is practically made of tin foil

Bottom Line:   
The bike has a good ride, but the rear swing arm is extrememly fragile... not good for a DH bike.

The worst thing about the bike isnt the bike at all, its the customer service.

I was forced to pay over $300 for a new seatstay arm for my Dare. The customer service representatives I talked to were extrememly unhelpful and unwilling to hear my side of the story. The first person I talked to even went so far as to say someone might have kicked or hit my frame with a hammer. What type of customer service is this? I pay $2500 for someone to mock me. I even showed the arm to some LBS and they said that any other company would warranty that part, and take a loss if they had to just to please their customers...not ellsworth. Not only that they charged me $225 for this part!!!! It has no bearing on it, and the derailluer hanger was fine. They even made a profit off of my bad luck.

To make a long story short, I layed the bike over while riding, I was moving sooo slow that I landed on my feet. The bike falls over and I pick it up to continue to ride, and the seatstay arm was dented and kinked so badly that my wheel wouldnt spin. And all the bike did was fall over.If this is normal for a Dare then the material they use is extrememly weak, and I do not recommend this frame to anyone who rides even remotetly hard.


So... if you want a bike that will bend and kink easy, and get the worst customer service available... get an Ellsworth you cant go right!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Mountain Creek, Plattekill

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $2300.00

Purchased At:   JB Mountain Bikes

Similar Products Used:   Super 8, BMW, Clifcat, Cortina

Bike Setup:   Dare, Monster T, Profiles, etc.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Robert Lombardi a Downhiller from San Jose, CA USA

Date Reviewed: July 25, 2000

Strengths:    I love downhill but I don't have the luxury of a lift where I go. This bike doesn't hold you back. Uphill is a breeze. The rear end can go through it's entire travel and you wouldn't even notice. The only reason I lock out the rear shock is for super technical climbs or very long and flat uphill when I want to be super efficient at pedalling, otherwise, I just leave the awesome Stratos rear shock on and enjoy the comfort of over 7 inches of rear travel.
The Dare is extremely versatile, you can put a light medium size 5 inch fork on the front, and light XC parts and enjoy a XC bike that'll tear through single track and allow you to travel cross country trails in comfort all day. Or you can deck it out with massive downhill equipment and flatten the mountains as you scream downhill. You can buy two Dare's and have the best of both worlds. Or mix it up a little and have some heavy downhill equipment and three chain rings on the front, which is what I did.
One of the best features?, the Bike just looks awesome. The pictures on the web or in magazines do not do it justice. The anodized finish, the machined rear of the frame, the thick fat tubing, and artfull welds are extremely impressive. The bike will give endless hours of visual enjoyment to both owners and onlookers.
Of course, an exceptional bike would not be complete without exceptional customer service. The guys and gals at Ellsworth are extra friendly. I even recieved a courtesy call shortly after recieving my bike. They wanted to know that I was satisfied with the bike! Now that's service. The monday of the 4th of July weekend my Race Face bottom bracket was moving around while I was pedalling. I feared the worst, that my frame's threads where stripped up. There wasn't a single Ellsworth Dealer open, but Mike at Ellsworth was not only there to help, but had the experience necessary to help me solve my problem. As it turned out, it wasn't the frame, it was the bottom bracket. I threw a new BB in and was riding the next day.
Can't forget the Newsletter, this company periodically sends a newsletter with tidbits of interesting info. For example, this year they are having a Moab trip. I hope to be there. Hope to see you there too! It's always fun to see how others have their Dare setup. and to try out different configurations.


Weaknesses:    None, it's worth every penny. Oh wait, there is one problem, All your friends will hate you for having this bike. I have two friends that sold their Santa Cruz Bullits and bought a Dare. One of them loves his Dare soo much that when he crashed, he was focused more on the safety of his Dare than on his very own body.

Bottom Line:   
Anyone that wants to have a fulfilling and new experience with a Bike should invest in the Dare. This bike has it all. Functionality, Durability, Comfort, Style and Character just to name a few.
Take Care.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Saratoga Gap Trail

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Similar Products Used:   Santa Cruz Bullit, ProFlex Beast.

Bike Setup:   Medium size Black Anodized Dare, Mavic D321 Rims, Hope 4 Piston Disc Brakes, Hope Bulb Hubs, XTR 9 Speed Drivetrain. Race Face Triple Ring Cranks, Azonix Love Seat, Stratos MX6 Front Fork.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by George Wisell a Downhiller from Winooski VT USA

Date Reviewed: March 2, 2000

Strengths:    Being able to smoke my friends in rock sections, cornering. Its lightweight, and I especially like the jealouse looks from all the people who realize they made a mistake and bought something else

Weaknesses:    you can never ride anything else again. My first Dare was stolen last year, so I had to buy another. The only problem I've ever had is a loose bearing, which is an easy fix, and some custom "cnc" mahining I had to do to make some parts work

Bottom Line:   
nothing can touch it from any standpoint. Nothing is built like it, nothing else rides like it, nothing else looks like it, although alot really try. Truly a work of art.
Buy it now!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   anything at Jay Peak or Killington

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Similar Products Used:   Yeti Lawill 6/8 GT STS1 DH, Kona Stab, MOuntian Cycles Shockwave

Bike Setup:   Manitou x-vert carbon, Sun Double Wides, MRP, Hayes, Sram, Raceface Cranks, Easton bars, NOKIAS BABY!!!

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Budha Bomber a Downhiller from City by the Bay

Date Reviewed: February 29, 2000

Strengths:    EVERYTHING!!!
It's a DH'r, Trail bike, All mountain, Freeride, XC(not racing though), Bad @ss mamer-jammer!!!!


Weaknesses:    ??Price???- not if you concider the fact that this is the only bike you'll need though.

Bottom Line:   
Bottom line?
It rocks!!!
What else can I say about a bike that does it all (and well for that matter). I can still climb w/ my hardtail buddies and when the trail starts to point down... It's all over. They get SMOKED!!!
Top quality construction.
One of the best designs.
Great on big hits and stutter bumps.
real tight steering w/ my setup.
This bike really shines on tight twisting DH singletrack.
The only place other DH bikes are any better is on REAL steep chutes/drop-ins b/c of the high BB and less slack head tube angle on the Dare.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   have to kill-ya if I told

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Similar Products Used:   Lots-none No other bike is like this @least that I've tried

Bike Setup:   All Tricked out (Triple chainring in front and a medium length stem- ie. 100mm X 20 degree oh... and a fox instead of the helix it came w/ )

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Pup a Downhiller from Temecula, CA

Date Reviewed: December 10, 1999

Strengths:    
Stiff, Strong, PLUSH, Light, FAST!!!!


Weaknesses:    
NONE


Bottom Line:   
This bike is fast, plush, and light. This bike doesn't like to go slow. Mine is very light for a DHO. weighing in at 29 lbs. You can go off 15 to 30 foot drop offs with ease. A blast to jump.
BEST DHO BIKE MADE!!!!!!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   
Ramona/Thomas MT.

Duration Product Used:   
less than 1 month

Similar Products Used:   
Intence, Rotec


Bike Setup:   
Stratos Helix, RST, Sram 9.0sl, AC, White Industries, Mavic

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Randall Keegan a Cross-Country Rider from CT

Date Reviewed: August 30, 1999

Strengths:    
Light wght, sturdy construction w/ plenty of travel. Sucks up drops and steeps on demand - best at high speeds. Climbs as well as any XC bike - in fact better than most!!


Weaknesses:    
Geometry makes some extreme technicals and singletrack a chore at low speed...momentum never meant more.


Bottom Line:   
Much better all mountain ride than I ever imagined. Hardtails leave u behind only on the most technical ascents, but they're all just rocks on the trail as u mow them down on the decent!!! Handles steeps, and dropoffs better than anything I've ridden - but beware slow speed is ur enemy! Momentum never meant so much.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   
anything fast & tight w/ hidden drops

Duration Product Used:   
3 months

Similar Products Used:   
Kona Stab and Stab delux (too heavy), Intense Uzzi (weaker handling), Santa Cruz Heckler (can't take the beating), Rocky Mtn Element T.O. - great for less extreme XC.


Bike Setup:   
White UD150, King H-set, Race Face riser/cranks & rings/post/stem (90x15), XTR d-train, Ringle Hubs laced to WTB 25mm Laserbeams w/ 14 guage spokes and stainless nipples, hayes discs, Tioga 2.3 dh fr, 2.1 XC rr, Stratos Helix pro rr shock. (12/32 XTR ti rr, 20/34/44 fr)

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Mike a Downhiller from Cypress, Ca

Date Reviewed: July 22, 1999

Strengths:    
Suspension is amazing. Super plush on bumps, even under braking. Takes big hits and ripple bumps equaly well. Yet it can still climb and sprint with little biopacing. Lightest downhill rig around.


Weaknesses:    
Expensive. A little too heavy to be a cross country bike. Hard to get, I waited 5 months to get mine.


Bottom Line:   
Simply amzing, a downhill bike that you can ride anywhere. My cross country bike sits at home while the Dare goes trailriding with me! Sounds like hype up you need to ride one to understand.

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Favorite Trail:   
Brianhead UT

Duration Product Used:   
6 months

Similar Products Used:   
Lawell straight-8, Intense UZI and M-1, Foes slammer, Ventana El Habrenero


Bike Setup:   
Stratos Super Star fork, Stratos Pro Shock, XTR stuff, Hayes brakes.

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by ND a Weekend Warrior from Cerritos, CA

Date Reviewed: July 13, 1999

Strengths:    
Super plush going down, super stiff going up. Beautiful product.


Weaknesses:    
odd size (15 or 17). Front der. shifting.


Bottom Line:   
Awesome piece of machinery. Although my setup isn't super light (about 31 lbs), the bike climbs as well as my hardtail. Very efficient pedalling and it feels like a cadillace on dh runs. Five jalepenos easily with the exception that I can't get my front der. to shift perfectly.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   
PV, Aliso, San Juan

Duration Product Used:   
3 months

Similar Products Used:   
Uzzi, Ells. Truth, Chuck.


Bike Setup:   
Stratos FR4 (awesome fork!), Chris King, Hayes, RaceFace cranks/rings.

Overall Rating:5
Submitted by Searl Tate a Weekend Warrior from Beverly Hills, CA

Date Reviewed: June 25, 1999

Strengths:    
Incredible climbing ability-- I know this is a downhill bike, but this is perhaps the most pleasant surprise I encountered. Great suspension travel and the non-torque reactive suspension geometry truly make the most treachorous stuff seem tame. I reach my limits far before the Dare throws in the towel.
No dreaded bob or wasted energy.
As is true of other Ellsworth bikes, I find the quality to be top-notch. I marvel at the beautiful welds, shot-peened and anodized finish. Everywhere I ride people are full of suspension questions and the funny thing is I don't feel weird at all letting total strangers experience the incredible suspension first-hand.


Weaknesses:    
Cost. About the only thing I can fault a Dare for is the bucks required to build a lightweight setup.


Bottom Line:   
What seemed to me a bunch of marketing hype complete with new buzz-words has made me a believer! This is a do-everything kind of bike-- I can ditch my ancient GT cross country bike. I just bought a Nissan Pathfinder since I need a place to store my Dare during my after-work rides in the Santa Monica mountains.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   
Aliso Viejo / Big Bear (for downhill stuff)

Duration Product Used:   
3 months

Bike Setup:   
Marzocchi JR.-T dual clamp / Hayes hydraulic brakes / Easton CF bars+seat post / Shimano XTR / Chris King head set / DT hubs

Reviews 1 - 14 (14 Reviews Total)

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