Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have not seen too many reviews of the Evolution yet so I thought I would post one here. I have been riding my Evolution for several months now, including one 100 mile race in Crested Butte. I settled on the Evolution after demoing the Carbon Tallboy, the Pivot 429, and a custom steel WaltWorks. I have been extremely happy with the performance and feel of the Evolution. It fits my riding style like a glove (Technical XC, big climbs, long rides, fast downhills). My build is stock XO size large, ghetto tubeless conversion, Ergon grips, 2.2 WTB Bronsons. It comes in just under 29 lbs with pedals and bottle cage. The Evolution is an extremely confident descender, soaking up anything big or nasty. I had some reservations about a 5” travel 29er when compared to the ride quality of some of the other well equipped 4” bikes out there, but now that I have it, I love how plush it feels. The one thing that stands out is the handling. The bike geometry and handling feels spot on, like it was a custom fit. And cornering is oh SO good! I feel like I am neatly tucked into the cockpit, not sitting tall and awkward like some older 29ers. I also prefer the higher bottom bracket for pedal strike clearance. The bike does not feel overly squishy given the amount of travel, and is climbs competently. Yes, you can find stiffer suspension, lighter climbers out there but few that will descend quite as nice as the Evolution. I found the stock Ellsworth 29er wheelset a bit on the heavy side and the rear has already come slightly out of true. Bottom line: The Evolution is definitely a bike to consider if you are in the market for a FS 29er and leaning towards better downhill performance, versus climbing efficiency. (Rider Profile: 165 lbs, Colorado Front Range, other bikes in my quiver: GF Rig 29er Single Speed, Rocky Mountain ETSX, Favorite rides: Porcupine Rim, Reno/Flag/Bear/Dr’s Park).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
945 Posts
evolution

I am curious about the diff. from the Tallboy you rode and the Evolution. They would seem to be diff. in purpose with the TB more endurance race and the Evolution more all day comfort trail bike. I know the acceleration would be slower, but once moving does the Evo. climb well? How about tight cornering? Thank's
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Tallboy versus Evolution

I really liked the tallboy. It has a little tighter geometry (more race) and a lower bottom bracket. This will bring your center of gravity lower and improve cornering. In contrast the Evolution is more relaxed, with more clearance and less prone to pedal strikes. I still get a lot of pedal strikes however. I think it is due to having a larger wheel base with the 29ers. When you go over a convex feature the BB tends to be lower.

If you are considering Carbon, the Tallboy is an excellent choice. I tend to have a lot of little crashes, and am leary of carbon getting cracked, although people are claiming newer carbon is tough (another debate, another thread please). The Tallboy Carbon is lighter in contrast, so if racing is your gig, and you have the $$$........
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,875 Posts
Really? Why is that? I thought they were all zero emissions good guys?
do some searches. Tony Ellsworth has alienated many long-timer mtbers with his unprofessional statements about competitors, his sometimes absurd marketing claims, and CS issues.

(I don't really care one way or another, btw. I owned a Truth years ago. I will say that the Enlightenment is far and away the ugliest bike on the market today. Reminds me of a chrysler with fake chrome and pink paint accents, aesthetically.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
85 Posts
"do some searches. Tony Ellsworth has alienated many long-timer mtbers with his unprofessional statements about competitors, his sometimes absurd marketing claims, and CS issues.

(I don't really care one way or another, btw. I owned a Truth years ago. I will say that the Enlightenment is far and away the ugliest bike on the market today. Reminds me of a chrysler with fake chrome and pink paint accents, aesthetically.)"


Hahah cheers bro. Well, to each his or her own. I personally love the new lines on the Enlightenment, but sure, I get that point of view. I did do some searches, and just found some people with broken Ellsworth frames, so figured that must be the deal, but doesn't seem like everyone shares that point of view, and it sounds like that's not the only beef. I've never looked into Ellsworth before seeing the Enlightenment, so thanks for your input. I'd probably sooner put $2000 into my bike than buy an Elightenment frame anyway. ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
I'm looking at either a Evolve or a Evolution. I am torn and wondering if you tried an Evolve? I'm a bit larger at 6;2 and 225 so maybe that extra inch of travel would be nice. Still, we have lots of rollers here and the climbs can be steep. Toss up right now for me. I'm coming from a GF Cake dlx 2 that had 4.5 inches of travel. Doing a lot of reading but have yet to see anything to really sway me one way or another. Anyone have some insight for me!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
945 Posts
Evolution vs. Tallboy

I have been riding a Tallboy for 1 1/2 year's now and have been riding an Ellsworth Epiphany for over 7 year's. I alway's felt that the Epiphany was the best 26" bike I had ridden for the trails I ride. I decided to build an Evolution which I just finished. I also sold the Epiphany . The Evolution was quite diff. than I had believed it would be. First it steered quickly and turned into corner's like a 26" bike. The steering wasn't nervous but much quicker than I expected. Second the rear sus. was firm and quick, not soft and mushy like my Epiphany with the pro pedal off. The over-all feel is a nimble quick steering bike with 5" travel out back when needed. So far I have climbed everything that I did on the TB but I sit and spin with less drama. I have only 4 ride's so will update this in a few months.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
385 Posts
I have been riding a Tallboy for 1 1/2 year's now and have been riding an Ellsworth Epiphany for over 7 year's. I alway's felt that the Epiphany was the best 26" bike I had ridden for the trails I ride. I decided to build an Evolution which I just finished. I also sold the Epiphany . The Evolution was quite diff. than I had believed it would be. First it steered quickly and turned into corner's like a 26" bike. The steering wasn't nervous but much quicker than I expected. Second the rear sus. was firm and quick, not soft and mushy like my Epiphany with the pro pedal off. The over-all feel is a nimble quick steering bike with 5" travel out back when needed. So far I have climbed everything that I did on the TB but I sit and spin with less drama. I have only 4 ride's so will update this in a few months.
Good report! and I suppose you live in the garden spot for riding too...Fruita! lucky you.

I had looked the Evolution, but was concerned that a 72* HA on 5" bike would translate into something a bit more nervous that I wanted...but sounds like thats not the case and its actually just nimble...good to know.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
945 Posts
Evolution vs. Tallboy

Metalhead- There isn't much info on the Evolution, however my experience with my Epiphany, and several friend's who own Ellsworth bike's ,all with zero issue's over the year's led me to try the Evolution. The bike ride's much quicker than I had imagined a 5" travel 29 with a longish wheelbase would. It may be a nervous to some but I don't like the log truck approach for a trail bike'. Secondly the bike's are US made, not like my TB from China. I think that there is too much analyzing number's and not enough time just riding bike's, just a thought.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
385 Posts
Metalhead- There isn't much info on the Evolution, however my experience with my Epiphany, and several friend's who own Ellsworth bike's ,all with zero issue's over the year's led me to try the Evolution. The bike ride's much quicker than I had imagined a 5" travel 29 with a longish wheelbase would. It may be a nervous to some but I don't like the log truck approach for a trail bike'. Secondly the bike's are US made, not like my TB from China. I think that there is too much analyzing number's and not enough time just riding bike's, just a thought.
Frank- I agree, which is why I appreciate you writing about the Evolution. Numbers don't always tell the whole story, unfortunately access to demo's or test bikes on all mtb's can be challenging. Which is why reading threads and analyzing details is sometimes all we have to go on.
its cool, that by you buying an ellsworth you are also helping the american working man, that reality has been slowly closing its doors largely due to consumer demand for greater value and in a every tightening budgets of the same working man and the large companies all running for the finish line to meet their quarterly stockholders expectations..sigh
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Ellsworth have a strong following in the shop I work at. A lot of us have Moments and love them.

But..this year we added 4 Evolve and 4 Evolution to our rental fleet and now, as the season is closing, only 2 have NOT had a broken rear triangle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
945 Posts
Evolution vs. Tallboy

I partially went on my past experience with Ellsworth bike's. Even though my first one broke a mag. rocker arm, the factory had a new one too me in 3 day's from my first call, not bad. Secondly my Tallboy fill's my need for a 4" travel quick trailbike. My recent knee issue's require that I sit and spin more hence the 5" 4-bar sus. Last I think the bike look's fantastic. I have owned 3 Santa Cruz bike's , and two ended up with broken frame's, I still like and ride Santa Cruz bike's. Last and I know I'm beating the horse, The bike steer's and handle's much quicker than the number's suggest.
 

·
11 is one louder than 10
Joined
·
1,408 Posts
225 ?

I'm looking at either a Evolve or a Evolution. I am torn and wondering if you tried an Evolve? I'm a bit larger at 6;2 and 225 so maybe that extra inch of travel would be nice. Still, we have lots of rollers here and the climbs can be steep. Toss up right now for me. I'm coming from a GF Cake dlx 2 that had 4.5 inches of travel. Doing a lot of reading but have yet to see anything to really sway me one way or another. Anyone have some insight for me!
At 225 there is no way I would suggest the Ellsworth. The rear end will be all over the place. Way too flexy for you.

I am 195 and couldn't stand how flexy the rear was on a 2011 evolve. Too bad because otherwise it's a nice ride.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top