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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all

I'm coming back to mountain biking now that my 11 year old son is really getting into it. I've pulled my ancient (1999?) Specialized Rockhopper out of the garage to ride the local trails with him (climbing and descending in the Oakland Hills on trails like Joaquin Miller). It's been fun, but I didn't realize how far behind my bike was until last month, when we went to Winter Park Colorado and rented some demo bikes. I think I fell in love with a 29" Trek Slash 9.7, but I don't know if I'm quite ready to plunk down $5K (although I'm willing to spend a few grand).

I'm now looking at a 2017 Ibis Ripley LS V2 for sale nearby listed at $2400. Anyone have any thoughts? I'm not familiar with the Ibis brand, but the bike seems to get pretty good reviews. I don't feel like I know enough to be able to determine if this particular build is reasonable or not. I took a look at the bike today - there are a number of small chips and divots in the carbon frame, but nothing that looks deep or compromising (but I don't really know what I'm talking about here).

Any feedback you could give me would be much appreciated. Thanks!

 

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I think the geo is a bit dated compared to the super long bikes of today...but...I also still think its a good bike today. I recently picked up a 2018 LS V3...I think the only difference is that the V3 can take a wider tire out back. Despite the geo not being up to date...it is still an excellent bike...even compared to the sled length bikes of today. The bike pedals extremely well, good climber, and a competent descender.
 

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Is the bike the right size for you?

It may seem like an obvious question but I've seen over and over here people trying to justify buying a bike that's either too small or too big because it's a "great price".
 

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I demo'd the bike when it came out and liked it...always loved their suspension designs...I thought it was better going down than going up, but still a competent climber. If it fits and feels good, I don't see how you could go wrong. I'm a huge fan of Schwalbe tires, but found the 29x2.6 Nobby Nics to be somewhat uninspired and would replace them for my application.
 

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A few things you may want to consider.
I absolutely disagree with Dirt road about geo. Modern geo has been a complete game changer for me. My 2019 Finally feels how I always thought a mountain bike should feel. Fit, stability at speed, climbing, and overall confidence have all been substantially improved. The ad claims a reach of 411mm but elsewhere It has it at 403mm for the medium, either way that’s crazy short. Most medium frames are in the 430-450mm range nowadays helping give that good “in” the bike feeling instead of feeling like your center of gravity is too high which was always an issue for me until now.

Also, if it is at all in your budget I would demo some bikes and consider buying new. My buddy was just looking at a brand new 2019 Cannondale habit 3 for about 3K on discount. You may pay a little more upfront but you’re not inheriting somebody else’s possible maintenance problems and getting a full warranty plus having shop support does go a long way if needed.
 

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A few things you may want to consider.
I absolutely disagree with Dirt road about geo. Modern geo has been a complete game changer for me. My 2019 Finally feels how I always thought a mountain bike should feel. Fit, stability at speed, climbing, and overall confidence have all been substantially improved. The ad claims a reach of 411mm but elsewhere It has it at 403mm for the medium, either way that's crazy short. Most medium frames are in the 430-450mm range nowadays helping give that good "in" the bike feeling instead of feeling like your center of gravity is too high which was always an issue for me until now.

Also, if it is at all in your budget I would demo some bikes and consider buying new. My buddy was just looking at a brand new 2019 Cannondale habit 3 for about 3K on discount. You may pay a little more upfront but you're not inheriting somebody else's possible maintenance problems and getting a full warranty and having shop support does go along way if needed.
I'm inclined to agree. When I demo'd the Ripley V3 and several other 29ers, I was in the market for a new bike and ended up with an SB5c 27.5. Don't get me wrong, if you can get a great deal on a Ripley V3, it's a fine bike. None of them at the time really did it for me. It was last year, on the newer 29ers that I was sold. I ended up with a Giant Trance 29 Pro 1. The difference between the new 29ers and those of 2016 was dramatic enough for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you so much for all the great feedback.

I agree that the geo might be dated, but since I'm currently riding a 1999 antique, anything I ride is going to be a huge improvement. And there were some great suggestions about alternatives (SB5c, Giant Trance Pro, Tallboy 4, etc), does anyone think I can find something comparable at this price point ($2400)? (I just found a local shop that has the Giant Trance 29 2 for $2800, but I guess that's not the Pro?)

Also, is it worth my time to ask the seller to take it to our local bike shop for a frame inspection or is that a waste of time?

Thank you!
 

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Also, is it worth my time to ask the seller to take it to our local bike shop for a frame inspection or is that a waste of time?

Thank you!
Probably a waste of time. Their means of testing adn yours are the same: Is it spongy to touch? Are there cracks or fracture lines? If I lightly tap the area with a coin does the sound change?
 

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Starting today Trek begins blowing out the 19s left in stock at their dealers and in their warehouses. A cash offer of 30% off plus tax to a manager only could work if you talk to enough different shop managers. 60% no refund down if they have to get the bike from a warehouse. The bikes will go. It happens every year at this time. Good hunting. Don't ask for the % off. Figure the price including tax and ask if the manager can work with this amount to get a deal done. New is lifetime warranty on the frame for carbon.
 

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Not sure what your budget is, but either maybe step up to new blow out or use this to negotiate.
https://www.competitivecyclist.com/...pbiBCaWtlcyAmIEZyYW1lczoxOjE2OmNjQ2F0MTAwMTYw

New LS V3 GX for $3660

I agree with others, depends on where you ride but the new geo went too far in my mind. Bought a V4 Ripley- sold it and bought a blow out V3 frame. Not everyone enjoys riding a monster truck with a steep seat tube
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hmm... I called the local Trek store and they only wanted to go down 20% on 2019s. But they had a 2018 Fuel EX 8 (new) that they would sell me for $1600. That sounded like a really great deal, although I know very little about the bike. Anyone have any experience with the 2018 FEX 8?
 

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But they had a 2018 Fuel EX 8 (new) that they would sell me for $1600. That sounded like a really great deal, although I know very little about the bike. Anyone have any experience with the 2018 FEX 8?
Eagle GX, decent brakes, and 30mm wide rims... Fun geo and some flip chip adjustability. Fork was just ok. Brand new. Hard to beat all that for $1600 especially if it's a good fit...
Check out some YouTube reviews...

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Not every manager will deal. They each have discretion. Andonly a manager will negotiate. A sales guy spouts the standard terms. Like "this is all we can do", etc. They are trained for that discussion. A manager can do what he wants. Maybe 2 out of 6 different stores will have one who will work with a buyer. But it's tougher if you don't yet know what you want. Having one bike in one size that you know is in the warehouse(a shop can check) puts you in the stronger negotiating position. The Fuel is a good deal.
 

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Since you're just getting back in the game, anything is going to be significantly better than what you're riding.

The FEX is a really, really good deal, though I'm not personally a fan of that bike.

The new Trance is rad and if it's a leftover 2019, I'm betting you can get it for a much better deal. Fantastic bike.
 

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The Fuel EX is a far better choice as an all around trail bike than an older Ripley.

The new Ripley ain't bad, but it's the only version of the Ripley that'd make the cut as an all mountain bike.

Are you sure you want a 29er.

It's worth looking at 27.5 if you're gonna being doing some playing.

Hmm... I called the local Trek store and they only wanted to go down 20% on 2019s. But they had a 2018 Fuel EX 8 (new) that they would sell me for $1600. That sounded like a really great deal, although I know very little about the bike. Anyone have any experience with the 2018 FEX 8?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I'm not sure what exactly you mean by playing (jumps?), but I'm an old guy now (almost 50), so I think my playing days might be behind me. I've really liked the stability I've felt on the 29s, but maybe I ought to get on a 27.5 just to see.
Most of my riding is going to be in the SF Bay Area hills (maybe 1 trip to the Sierras a year), if that makes any difference.

@Blatant, what makes the Trance so rad? (and which model were you referring to)
(man, there are a lot of options out there. Really hard to pick one)
 

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I'm not sure what exactly you mean by playing (jumps?), but I'm an old guy now (almost 50), so I think my playing days might be behind me.
Playing...pop off trail features, go fast, rip turns. Don't throw in the towel yet bro, your not even 50!.

Think of it like a car, do you want a sporty Cadillac, BMW M3, Ford Raptor, Rezvani Tank, Suburu Forrester??

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I had a 2019 Trance 29-2, the only alloy model they offer. It's not the greatest build on the planet, but perfectly acceptable at that price point. Dialed geometry, pedals well, pretty plush and aggressive despite the limited travel.

I paid $3k out the door when it was still early in the model cycle. At this point, if you can find a leftover 2019 in your size, you should be able to get a nice price.
 
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