Ventana El Conquistador Tandem

DESCRIPTION

Ventana’s meticulous craftsmanship and engineering design skills were put to the test with El Conquistador de Montañas. By combining our industry renowned rear suspension technology with a super-stiff mainframe, we have produced a high performance tandem with real off-road capabilities.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 13  
[Dec 09, 2015]
laksboy
All Mountain Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Can handle nearly ANY terrain with a skilled pilot and willing co-pilot.

Weakness:

New, they are painfully expensive for a very purpose-driven, niche product.
switchbacks, tight, twisty, punchy technical terrain.
Banging your stokers feet into rocks. Ow Dad!

I bought a 10 year old (2005ish) used ECdM so that I could incorporate my kids into my rides as well as make some of the shorter, closer to town trails more challenging to ride. I have a 17/14.5 and my 8 you old son with the seat all the way down and cranks shorteners, just barely fits. In summary it's awesome, as long as the terrain isn't tight or punchy, the bike will go anywhere. It's SO MUCH FUN. I get a killer workout, my son gets a good workout, we get to ride out way further than we would if he was on his own bike, I get the extra challenge I was looking for, I get a longer hall-pass, we have fun together, he talks smack from the back about why I'm going so slow down hills. To which I reply that most intermediate level mtn bikers wouldn't even be able to ride what we are taking this thing down. It's THAT capable.

The only upgrades I did were the ghetto tubless/procore in the rear and wider bars. The bike came with a new but faulty DJ-1 (100mm travel). I happened to have a RS Lyrik (115-160) fork on a another bike and have been currently riding with it. I'm planning on fixing the DJ-1 and will try it out as well given the bike geometry is meant for 100mm, but I'm not sure that I will want to go back to less travel given the kind of terrain I like to ride. At the 115 setting steering is just fine, at 160 it gets noticeably slower on sharp corners, but for wide open stuff and straight-line technical gnar, 160 is great. I may consider adding a dropper post for myself.

I am reasonably confident that as long as my stoker stays "stoked" I will be riding this bike at least 50% of the time, if not more for the next couple of years. In fact I am hoping that in 2017 I can ride a couple stages of Breck Epic with it. Then I will have to wait a couple years until my younger 2 kids get big enough to ride it. :(

For anyone considering this, I highly recommend rigging up a trail-a-bike first and taking your kids out on the trail. WAY CHEAPER and on smoother trails just as much fun. You can also clean switchbacks! But once they hit 7 or 8 the trail-a-bike will be too small. And the bumps on that little wheel will beat them up. Most importantly you will learn whether your kid is "into" it. My 10 year old daughter hyperventilates as soon as I ride in the grass or off a curb. It's just not for her. My son though is fearless.


Similar Products Used:

Intense 5.5 with a trail-a-bike!

[May 29, 2013]
Adam F

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Fantastically well made, beautiful frame. Geometry that works well going up, riding along and coming down.

Weakness:

Only limiting factor so far is the captain. (Must try harder)

We (as with most I suppose) tried tandem riding because my wife couldn't ride places I did. Because of this we tried a basic road tandem and loved the sensation of "togetherness". We bought a cheap adventure tandem which I beefed up with MTB parts and enjoyed our first off road experiences together, lasting three months before we broke it.
We decided to take the plunge and buy a proper off road beast! Long discussions took place and we chose a full suspension 26er ECDM. We have not been disappointed, my wife now takes a major part in where we go to ride and what we ride when we get there.
In the 2 months we have had our bike we have rode local routes (Nottingham UK), Cannock Chase, Wales - several different areas and the Scottish borders. We have ridden together every weekend since we got ECDM whatever the weather.
The bottom line in this is that I look forward to riding the Ventana more than my solo bikes (Whyte 905, Yeti ASR5c) this in my opinion says it all.
My advice, if you want to give tandeming a try then do so, you might find you enjoy it as much as we do. (Stealing someone else's words) If you see a Ventana ECDM you will want to have a ride on it, if you have a ride on it you will want to buy one.
Alex at MTBtandems built ours. it takes ages to get it sorted by email, so take my advice and have a few phone conversations, or if you're lucky enough to live there go see him in person, he knows his stuff and is very helpful. The build takes a while but believe me it is worth the wait. Our Venatana ECDM absolutely R.O.C.K.S.

[Sep 01, 2011]
gchilly
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

This is a very sturdy tandem that rides extremely smooth and is actually very quick for a tandem bicycle, especially when it comes to turns. The color is absolutely beautiful in the blue. We love this tandem!

Weakness:

None

This is our second tandem purchased from Alex at MTBTandems.com and we couldn't be happier! We've become absolutely obessed with tandem mountain bike riding and we see many more mountain bike tandem adventures in our future, along with many more tandem bikes. Alex at MTBTandems.com has been so helpful with both tandem purchases and is always available for questions or if you need help with anything.

If you're thinking about buying a mountain bike tandem, Alex is the only person you'll ever need to speak with. He's very knowledgeable about tandems and much more. Give Alex a call today or visit his website at MTBTandems.com. You won't regret it!

Similar Products Used:

Fandango Tandem 29er

[Jul 23, 2011]
bighit1
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Great quality product,built super strong,dual suspension smooths out the bumps and jumps.

Weakness:

NONE!!

An amazing Beast of a mountain bike!She goes just about anywhere i want her to go. tight turns are a bit of a challenge,climbs are no problem,bumps "what bumps"! we've even had it airborn and it handled great.we show up at some of the trails with lots of technical and climbs , and everybody looks at us like ,"your going out there with that"!
can't say enough about the bike.Alex @ MTBTandems helped me to set it up,those guys and gals know their stuff so if your in the market for a tandem, talk to them first!!

Similar Products Used:

First tandem

[Mar 10, 2011]
mrt
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Excellent quality build, stable and tracks great!

Weakness:

None worth noting

This is by far the best tandem we have ever owned or ridden. Goes where you point it and can handle just about any situation within reason. The White Brothers fork raised the bike considerably, so my stand over was much higher than expected. I was able to lower the fork legs a bit but still took some getting use to being that high off the ground. Yes, the bike is expensive, but the Rohloff build is outstanding! We will never be caught in the wrong gear again. I don't regret spending the money. We ride this bike at least 3 days a week during the season and enjoy every minute. Thank you Alex @ MTBTandems!

Similar Products Used:

Specialized, Co-motion Road

[Mar 01, 2011]
mvbiker
Racer

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Excellent build quality. Available custom geometry. Laterally stiff, yet smooth through the rough.

Weakness:

Could use a few more water bottle mounts (has 2).

This is an incredible bike. Our fourth tandem in about 20 years of riding two-up and definitely the best yet. Rear suspension eats up most of the stuff that would normally have my wife asking me to slow down, yet doesn't seem to come with any downside. No bobbing while peddling (Pro-Pedal off), no noticeable flexing. The 40 up front just eats everything, yet doesn't seem too heavy or bouncy when pedaling. We have the fork set up with 8" now, but plan to drop it to 7" or 6" at some point, but having the full travel is just too much fun right now. Bike weighs 45 lbs as built.

Similar Products Used:

Cannondale, Otis Guy, Ibis

[Jul 08, 2010]
oc-biker
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Full Suspension smooths out technical trails for the stoker. Excellent build quality. Super stiff, strong frame. Made in USA.

Weakness:

Standard geometry has much too short top tube. Need to go with semi custom geometry to get adequate ETT reach.

Amazing bike. No comparison to the fully rigid tandems I've ridden in the past. Steep, technical downhills are no problem with this bike. The only problem is when there are tight turns it's like driving a stretch limo. The wife stoker loves the bike. Sits through pretty rough sections. I don't need to call out every little bump anymore. She just says "what bump?" The Ventana soaks up rough sections like an all mountain bike. We've done up to 2 foot drops without any problems. Climbing is a challenge due to the weight (50+ pounds). However, climbing steep terrain (up to 23% so far) is totally possible but it will be slow going.

Riding MTB Tandems comes with a number of challenges. The Ventana helps with many of those challenges but it's still a major commitment. I strongly suggest you ride a friends mtb tandem prior to making a purchase. My stoker and I love the MTB tandem experience but it's not for everyone. We've ridden for a few years on a road tandem so our team communication and skills were pretty good. It was still a major adjustment to mtb tandem riding though.

Alex at MTBTandems.com was super helpful on sizing and answering my many questions. I spoke to another Ventana dealer and I would have ended up on a bike that didn't fit the captain well. However, Alex suggested semi custom geometry which solved the short TT problem. He knows his stuff!

Similar Products Used:

KHS fully rigid MTB Tandem. Cannondale fully rigid MTB tandem. KHS Road tandem.

[Jun 09, 2009]
ds2199
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

This bike does it all. Once you get used to the long wheelbase, there's not a lot that you can't ride (tight switchbacks aside). The ability to order in various sizes makes it a great candidate for height challenged riders.

Weakness:

Have yet to find the the weakness

We love this bike! The other mtb tandems that would be compareable would be Ellsworth Whitness and the DaVinci Symbiosis. Ellsworth only comes in one size, so for the vertically challenged - it was not an option. DaVinci would likely be a worthy competitor.

Ventana makes a sweet bike. I would reccomend to anyone looking for a full supsension tandem.

If you are in the market for a mountain tandem - talk to Alex at mtbtandems.com. He's the man!!!!!!

Similar Products Used:

1st Mtb tandem, nothing to compare it to. This is our 4th tandem though and

[Jul 30, 2007]
Kevin
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

This is an exception mountain bike tandem. It handles well, has great clearance, and the rear set is great for the stoker. I have ridden on fire roads, single track, etc. Very efficient climber, with minimal BOB.

Weakness:

none

Working with Alex at MTBTandems.com was a great experience. He really knows how to pick the right size and fork setup based upon your size, riding style. I spent about 90 minutes with Alex, doing measurements on the riders and our other bikes and tandem. The fit was done over the phone, and it works very well. If you need a custom Tandem for off road use, this is the best way to go. This is my 4th tandem, and my 3rd mountain bike tandem.

Similar Products Used:

Santana Picolo, Cannondale MT2000. These are both good tandems, but the Ventana is outstanding.

[Dec 16, 2006]
Marc Norton
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Extremely well built, very stable, easy to set up and work on, great customer service for product no matter who you bought it from.

Weakness:

It's not articulated for tight singletrack (ha ha)

I bought the bike mainly for stoker comfort and the ECdM has delivered that and then some. Parts for the build are easy to obtain from standard fair of mountain bike parts. Never had a problem with headsets or bottom brackets as the machining is superb.
We don't take the machine to the extremes that others have. It is capable of taking just about anything. We are a heavy team 360lbs+ and it has never complained.
Definately the best value in full suspension tandems.

Similar Products Used:

Cannondale MT2000, ATC T-5 fork, other parts same as ECdM

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