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I'm about to purchase my first 29er. I'm 6'5" and 215 lbs. I ride rocky, rooty East coast trails. I'm borrowing a friend's '08 Gary Fisher Hi Fi Deluxe 29er and it climbs way better than my 26er. I rode it today on the nastiest trail in our area and it handled everything very well. I did bang the pedals on some rocks a few times, but I can live with that, I guess.

I've read a lot of reviews on FS 29ers and see great things about the Niner RIP 9. I can't seem to find a head-to-head that includes both of these bikes. Since I now know how the Hi Fi rides, I need to figure out how the RIP 9 compares to it.

Do they climb similarly? Is one better than the other? Any other differences or similarities I should be aware of before I pull the trigger?

Thanks!
J. C.
 

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I know they had some issues with the l & xl HiFi frames
Niner has also had some frame issues on the larger frames
I love my Rip and agree with all of the possitive reviews
with your size I would wait and get an 09 Rip
 

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MY GOD GET THE RIP9! I have an '08 size XL and it climbs ridiculously well for a FS. If you are getting an '09 it will be even better (and cool new paint/ano choices). Either way GET A RIP9! You will thank yourself (and me) later.

Take Care & Make the Right Decision,

PF
 

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Not necessarily issues.

esXso said:
What issues did Niner have, was it the rocker redesign? I would think the Hi Fi might be a bit small for someone 6' 5"
The RIP9 has never had issues at least negative ones. The '07 model was written up a bazillion times as being the dominant FS 29er. Then the '08 came out and the larger frames got a little beefed up in the rear end. Now the '09's are on their way and HOLY CRAP they are SICK. I have seen one in person and they have once again raised the bar. Tremendously. Not to mention the rocking new color options. Check out the '09 PDF Catalog on the Niner website to see for yourself.

www.ninerbikes.com

Take Care,

PF

*The '07/'08 JET9 (First Run) had some somewhat scary issues with the Rocker Design. That was properly and timely (relative to the amount of testing/re-tooling that had to be done) resolved by the Great Team that they have over @ Niner.
 

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Sorry love my RIP9 and Niner in general is a good company, but yes the RIP9 had some issues and hence the complete redesign for '09.

Original frames had too thin ST tubing and numerous frames suffered cracks around the rocker point weld, also suffered numerous rear triangle supports breaks. Redesign in '08 made the ST tubing thicker, changed the rocker point to an open ended weld and eliminated the cracks AFAIK, they also then added iBeams into the rockers and thickened up the tubing in the rear triangle to try and help with frame flex; IT DIDN'T (took mine to a friend who owns a mchie shop and when he checked it he said the flex wasn't only coming from the rear, but started in the front triangle and exaserbated it's self towards the rear, suggested several points where braces would need to be put to stop this.)

'09 coming up and Niner has had the frame out for 2 years and has had lots of real world testing done by customers and realised it had major flaws, hence, they totally redesigned it - hydro formed tubing, solid cast rockers, changeable rear drop outs - nothing from the old frames will fit the new ones and it looks nothing like the original.

Oh and as gto the OP's original question ................. Definitely if it's between the RIP9 and the HiFi, get the '09 RIP9. Despite al the "flaws" the earlier versions of the RIP9 are stil great bikes and climb like a mountain goat on crack ;) who only knows what the much stiffer '09 will be like :D Also at your height, not sure that an XL would fit you and maybe you should consider going for a Turner Sultan DW link in a XXL size. I say this as I'm only 6'2", but have rather long arms and legs and run a setback Thomson post and a 120mm stem to get the fit I like, although there are loads of guys your height riding the XL and quite happy - for the life of me can't quite figure out how :confused:

PanFry said:
The RIP9 has never had issues at least negative ones. The '07 model was written up a bazillion times as being the dominant FS 29er. Then the '08 came out and the larger frames got a little beefed up in the rear end. Now the '09's are on their way and HOLY CRAP they are SICK. I have seen one in person and they have once again raised the bar. Tremendously. Not to mention the rocking new color options. Check out the '09 PDF Catalog on the Niner website to see for yourself.

www.ninerbikes.com

Take Care,

PF

*The '07/'08 JET9 (First Run) had some somewhat scary issues with the Rocker Design. That was properly and timely (relative to the amount of testing/re-tooling that had to be done) resolved by the Great Team that they have over @ Niner.
 

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Funny...

...how there's not one reason given but "OMG I love the RIP9 get the RIP9 no question!!!"

I have a HIFi Deluxe, my training/ racing buddy has the Pro (he actually won a cyclocross race on it two days ago). 2 other guys at the shop have the HiFi's as well. No problems. Great riding, handling, and climbing bikes.

Of course, most of us are very good climbers anyway. Pretty sure it's the rider that does that.

The HiFi generally comes in a bit lighter weight than most 29er FS bikes (including the RIP9). My Deluxe is sub 26 lbs. with a few parts swaps (especially wheelset).

Niner makes a nice bike as well. The Fisher is the first "non-boutique" bike I've owned in a long time, and I think there's a noticeable bias against mainstream bikes on the forums.

BTW- we just built up an XL HiFi Deluxe for a customer with a Rohloff rear wheel. Pretty cool.
 

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mtroy said:
I have only ridden the 09 RIP, but it seems an odd comparison to a HiFi. The RIP had a very all mountain/trail bike feel to it.
A lot of people compare these two bikes because they are both similar travel FS 29ers.
I can't comment on the RIP 9 and sounds like the OP has already ridden the HiFi, but I want to chime in on my love for the HiFi Pro that I ride. I was debating between these two bikes as well, but ultimately the cost difference and chance to demo the HiFi won out. Sounds like the RIP is a little more plush and the HiFi is a little more XC oriented. I would have liked to try a RIP but couldn't justify an extra $1,000. I love my HiFi and have had no regrets. If the cost difference is not a major issue, the RIP wouldn't be a bad choice at all, especially for gnarly terrain. If it is, well the HiFi is a pretty sweet deal IMO, and handles rocks and roots quite well. I don't think you can go wrong either way really. :thumbsup:
 

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I'm 6'5" and test rode an 09 hi-fi. I absolutely hated it. Not sure why but it just didn't have a good feel to me. The suspension wasn't that plush and really only seemed to slow me down. On the other hand I test rode an 09 superfly and loved it. I have never liked the feel of the GF suspension design on the hi-fis so maybe I'm biased.

I have a niner MCR in XL and it fits me like a glove (110mm stem, straight post). I've never ridden the RIP but guarantee if I were looking to replace my 26er FS anytime soon the 09 RIP would be right at the top of the list. Seems like niner has really done their homework and knows how to build great 29" bikes, GF thinks they're great in the 29" world but I'm not sure if they've really got the FS 29er thing down yet.
 

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tiflow_21 said:
GF thinks they're great in the 29" world but I'm not sure if they've really got the FS 29er thing down yet.
I think too many people are really liking the HiFi's for that statement to hold much weight. Maybe they are not for you, but many folks are digging the HiFi 29ers, me included.
 

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Really? I haven't heard much of a love fest in regards to the hi-fis. Definitely not as much as you hear about the other FS 29ers. I guess I'd be interested to see if there are any pro reviews on the hi-fi. Any shining reviews on the GF suspension design? Seems to me like it's an old design that needs updating badly. I'm just stating my opinion and ride results... sorry if it offended any hi-fi owners.
 

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tommyrod74 said:
...how there's not one reason given but "OMG I love the RIP9 get the RIP9 no question!!!"

I have a HIFi Deluxe, my training/ racing buddy has the Pro (he actually won a cyclocross race on it two days ago). 2 other guys at the shop have the HiFi's as well. No problems. Great riding, handling, and climbing bikes.

Of course, most of us are very good climbers anyway. Pretty sure it's the rider that does that.

The HiFi generally comes in a bit lighter weight than most 29er FS bikes (including the RIP9). My Deluxe is sub 26 lbs. with a few parts swaps (especially wheelset).

Niner makes a nice bike as well. The Fisher is the first "non-boutique" bike I've owned in a long time, and I think there's a noticeable bias against mainstream bikes on the forums.

BTW- we just built up an XL HiFi Deluxe for a customer with a Rohloff rear wheel. Pretty cool.
How did you do a Rohloff on a FS bike? Did you run a chain tensioner?

Thanks!
 

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tiflow_21 said:
Really? I haven't heard much of a love fest in regards to the hi-fis. Definitely not as much as you hear about the other FS 29ers. I guess I'd be interested to see if there are any pro reviews on the hi-fi. Any shining reviews on the GF suspension design? Seems to me like it's an old design that needs updating badly. I'm just stating my opinion and ride results... sorry if it offended any hi-fi owners.
No offense taken, just setting the record straight. ;)

I know GuitarTed likes em' and they have had some other good magazine and online reviews. Lots of positive comments on these forums too. I really think they are hard to beat for the price, given the component group and weight. That's only if you like the ride, of course. Seems some heavier riders prefer other rides though. I'm ~ 6' and 165 lbs and the large HiFi Pro has treated me well. I didn't have the option to demo other brands, but as soon as I test rode the GF, I knew it was a great match for me anyway. We are lucky to have so many choices to suit individual styles. :thumbsup:
 

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tiflow_21 said:
Really? I haven't heard much of a love fest in regards to the hi-fis. Definitely not as much as you hear about the other FS 29ers. I guess I'd be interested to see if there are any pro reviews on the hi-fi. Any shining reviews on the GF suspension design? Seems to me like it's an old design that needs updating badly. I'm just stating my opinion and ride results... sorry if it offended any hi-fi owners.
No offense taken. Honestly, I've successfully raced horst-link bikes, high-forward single pivots, low single pivots, VPP bikes, and hardtails. I'd agree that it'll be cool if (when?) the HiFi gets the ABP rear end that is on the Roscoe, Fuel, etc., but IMHO, the function of an XC full suspension is to take off the edge and not bob very much, which the HiFi does very well. If you want a sofa, look elsewhere.

If you want a bike that's more active under braking (the HiFi tends to squat, making for more stability but also less active suspension under heavy braking), then look elsewhere as well, or learn better braking technique.

Seems that the review on twentynineinches.com was rather positive. It's a relatively affordable bike, very light for its price, with efficient suspension that doesn't get in the way of going fast on XC-type trails. Bigger, heavier riders might find it a little flexier than heavier bikes, which should come as no surprise.

I've observed that there are 2 major groups of 29er riders here in the forum- guys who like the 29er advantages for racing and fast XC riding (these guys are generally shorter and lighter, as racers in general are), and bigger guys who needed the big wheels because they are more proportional to their large frame sizes (these guys are also generally heavier riders). Of course there's some overlap between the groups, but there you go. The racer types don't complain about flex much, because it isn't usually an issue for them. But most guys who are over, say 6'4" and weigh in at well above 200 lbs. are going to find most lightweight FS frames a bit flexible- especially 29ers.
 

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ey guys

I'm a big rider, 6'7" 250+ I just broke my second HIFI 29er frameset. If I had the money right now I'd be looking for another bike. Fisher has been good about sending out replacement pars but who really wants to go through that.
 
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