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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'll soon be having a new 4" travel trail bike built, and it will be either an Ellsworth Truth or a Turner Flux. This has turned out to be a difficult decision, so I'm soliciting input. Here is what I've considered to this point to be the main differences, in no particular order:

~ Frame metrics: Truth has better standover and BB clearance.

~ Aesthetic detail: Truth has laser-etched logos, Flux has decals.

~ Cable routing: (FWIW) Truth routes on the bottom of the top tube, Flux routes on top.

~ Rear triangle configuration: Flux has a pivot on the seat stay, while the Truth's is on the chain stay.

~ Pivot maintenance: A debate within itself, the Truth has bearings and the Flux has bushings (and zerk fittings).

All the other factors which I've considered are ties, or are close enough to me objectively, that they do not merit any weight.

I also expect to get a new XC race bike soon, and there is little doubt but that it will be a Turner Nitrous. That would seem to make a much better case for the Flux, thinking about things like similar ride feel characteristics, similar maintenance routines, and synergies/leverage with the one vendor.

Thoughts, anyone?
 

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involuntary dismounter
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yeah...i went through the truth v flux debate when i was getting my new bike too! i test rode a truth...but it was one of those parking lot test rides that doesn't tell you anything...it was comfortable enough...but i dunno...

ultimately, the truth fell off of my list pretty quickly, because of the customer service issues. since i'm still a student (read: poor), this bike was going to be quite a chunk of my annual income...and from what i read on mtbr and what i heard in shops both here in AZ and in Canada, was that ellsworth is really hard to deal with when something goes wrong with the frame...which meant that i was taking a chance on being bikeless if something went wrong...and that was not acceptable...

as far as your list goes:
i've done some crazy riding on my flux lately and i have not had a problem with BB clearance...i don't have much standover on my bike, but it has not been a problem. TT lenght was much important to me in terms of fit...my flux is perfect for me in terms of TT length...

as far as logos go...not an issue for me...i'd have been ok with no logos...also, from what i understand, if your decals start looking really sad, they're fairly easy to replace.

as far as cable routing...i've never had a bike with bottom routing...and i've never once thought 'man, i wish my cables were routed on the bottom of the TT'

pivot maintenance has not been an issue yet...but looks easy enough...even a girl can do it...:) but that's because i'm a major tomboy...so i don't think it counts. :)

good luck with your bike buying! :D
 

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Surfin' da mountain
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I was in the same position just a few years ago...

They're both great bike frames. When I was buying, the local bike shop had a beautiful Ellsworth on the wall begging to be built up. The bikeshop said if ya break something, Turner is easier to deal with. I had just been through a repair on a Fox component and not ready to deal with hastle. So I went with the Turner and don't regret it.:thumbsup:
 

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You don't mention price. Is $600 not that big a deal to you, or can you get them for comparable prices? Even if that is the case I would still go with the Flux. Haven't ridden a Truth to compare, but having ridden a Flux for two years I can say it is as fine a bike as I could ever hope for.

You mention "better standover and BB clearance" as a plus for the Truth. I would say that the 13.4" BB height of the Truth is much too tall, and would be a liability, not an advantage. I ride rooty, rocky East Coast terrain and wouldn't have minded an ever so slightly higher BB on the Flux, but in the order of a tenth of an inch or so, not .6"; the Truth's 13.4" is the same as the 5.5 Spot! For the most part I got used to the bottom bracket height; it definitely helps give you a low COG and rail the turns.

The high bottom bracket makes the listed standover height of the Truth all the more suspect (Ellsworth is known to measure this with sag factored in). The Ellsworth site lists SO at 28" for all sizes, clearly an error. The Competitve Cyclist site lists it at 28.5" for the 18" model with a 4" head tube and 23.5" top tube. This sizing compares directly to the 17" Flux (4" head tube, 23.5" top tube) which has a listed SO of 31".

Considering the seat tube of the Truth starts over half an inch higher than the Flux thanks to the higher bottom bracket, the top tube would have to slope an additional five and a half inches to provide the supposed extra 2.5" of standover height. I don't think that much additional slope is even possible, especially considering the longer shock of the Ellsworth. In other words the listed SO of the Truth would be meaningless to me. I kind of doubt it's any lower than the Flux, but would want to personally measure it or have a reputable individual do so for me before I put any stock in it.

The aesthetics, cable routing, and suspension design are all personal preference. IMO Turner's pivots are definitely a selling point, but I can't say I've heard much bad about Ellsworth's bearings either.

You don't mention customer service either, which may be one of the best reasons to go with a Turner over any brand, much less Ellsworth.
 

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Master of the Face Plant
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You must ride both on the trail.

Bottom line you must demo both. These bikes are very close in many ways. I did a 17 mile on dirt demo with both the Flux and the Truth and some other bikes. In the end the Flux just felt like home to me. The head angle is more relaxed and I liked the more laid back feel. The truth felt much more racy but made me a bit nervous about going over the bars on steep stuff. These are both excellent XC machines and nobody here can tell you which is best for you. You need to invest the time and do a real demo. The truth felt great to me but the flux just gave me that "oh yeah!" feeling. It really put a smile on my face.

I forgot to mention the pivots. I have never heard a squeak in the 7 months I have owned my flux. I have regreased the zerks maybe twice.
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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ya nailed it again miles. and if yer b/bkt numbers are right, which i dont doubt they are, that means a h2o mount would be worthless in the ells. nuthin would fit. no lights, no dog water, no extra for epics.

so, bow.....

a higher b/bkt would ruin the chassis for a bike in this class for me. after a year on my beloved flux, i dont see a need to change geo even i smigeon. its been ridden on fast race circuts and unrelentingly burley colorado 1 track without dissapointment. ask the front range locals how impressed they were watchin it do its job under a hack rider. count me in for flux # 2.

permanent logos of any kind are the curse of most frame owners i know. if i had a nickle for every time a custy complained about etched or clear coated graphics gettin hosed and no way to replace or simply remove them, my shop would be open by now.

theres gonna be a day (or lots of em is my guess) when ya need to shoulder that bike. enjoy those cables and housing stops as they dig into yer flesh. also yer more prone to early replacement when they get dirty. if turner went to that style of routing, id buy a motiv.

lemme put it this way, my burner is now 11 years old, saw more miles than a big rig and i changed the pivot h/ware once, never loosened,never creeked, never crunched, never failed.

cs is sometimes better than a bit of this or a touch of that when makin a decision like this. spendin the cash like this. and at the moment (sorry for the poor reference) waitin for availablity like this. weigh that part very carefully my new friend. it can make or break a bike buyin experience.
 

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The Flux is way stiffer and feels less twitchy.
The Flux is less expensive and very good deals can be had right now. I know- I have checked around.
Ells customer service is just scary and I'd NEVER take the risk after all the stories I've heard. Some things don't need to be experienced first-hand.
I think I'd be a bit embarrased to ride an Ellsworth now:eek:
 

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Standover

Bowerg,
I cannot comment one either one bike or the other (havent ridden either) but I can tell you one thing about stand over height on a Turner. I have a 29.5 or 30 inch inseam and a Burner with a supposed SO of 31 (med) just like the Flux. Somehow I have 1 to 1.5 inches of clearance between my nads and the top tube. How is that possible??? Because DT measures SO from a point near mid way between the seat and head tube like everyone should do. Thats why it seems high, but its not. In reality (not Tony E's world) I would bet its actually better than the Truth.

Not knockin the Truth at all. I think that SO height along with TT length are the two most important measurements for bike fit. Even if you cant demo both go to a shop that carries each and stand over it and have someone knowledgeable help you get fit properly. If you really cant decide between the two frames go with whatever one feel better when you are sitting on it.

But of course in the end everyone knows the Turner is better ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
add'l comments

Thanks, excellent points made here.

miles_e, you are of course correct about the several-hundred dollar price gap. I should have mentioned that initially but did not because it's not a determining factor to me. I greatly appreciate the BB height clarification, on your part and others'. It all seems much more rational now, and I'll no longer think the Truth has an advantage there (or with SO).

cactus, good commentary on the logos and cable routing details. As for the latter, I too feel what you mentioned is quite important but many others seem not to weight that much, if at all.

No doubt, customer service is a factor. Hard to say exactly, but I'd say it's fairly important. Like many purchase decisions I think most of us go into a transaction like this thinking we'll likely not ever have to exercise it, but all the better to have the peace of mind.
 

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Team Blindspot
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Like this CC?

cactuscorn said:
a higher b/bkt would ruin the chassis for a bike in this class for me. after a year on my beloved flux, i dont see a need to change geo even i smigeon. its been ridden on fast race circuts and unrelentingly burley colorado 1 track without dissapointment. ask the front range locals how impressed they were watchin it do its job under a hack rider. count me in for flux # 2.
nuf said!!
 

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customer service is important

bowerg said:
No doubt, customer service is a factor. Hard to say exactly, but I'd say it's fairly important. Like many purchase decisions I think most of us go into a transaction like this thinking we'll likely not ever have to exercise it, but all the better to have the peace of mind.
I ride my Flux hard, I ride it on some of the same trails where Bikezilla rides his RFX (you can see some of his picture posts). Unfortunately that means that I have needed to take advantage of that customer service.

1) I dented my seatstay pretty badly (I don't exactly know how, I suspect "dismounting" on some rocks ...). I gave Greg at Turner a call and four days later I had a new seatstay in my hands (I live on the opposite side of the country, upstate New York) at crash replacement cost.

2) I broke one of the rockers, again I don't know how or when. I sent a picture of the rockers to Greg by e-mail and two hours later he replied saying that a pair of rockers was in the mail for me. No charge.

I have never owned an Ellsworth and cannot comment on their customer service, all I can say is that Turner has treated me exceptionally well, and I don't think I am special.

BTW: I just finished building an 06 RFX so hopefully, my Flux will get treated a little better in the future ....
 

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Flux info

I just graduated from an epic across to a flux and it has ben night and day as a race bike(marathon distance though), i guess i can't really help on the truth side as i have only test ridden the truth and the flux got it for me. The flux has been absolutely awsome, i think it just come down to what you want the bike for, i built mine as a fast trail racer and was surprised at just how fast and efficient it was with rp23 shock. I think both bikes are of highest quality, and can be built to fly, but it is really your own test ride that should make the decision.
 

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I'd like to take this opportunity to complicate things by saying that if you really are sure you're getting a Nitrous race bike in the near future, I'd get a 5-spot, not a Flux.

Regardless, I sure wouldn't buy the Truth, but I'm big, ride a lot, and tend to wear things out and/or break parts of them. Turner CS is incomparable and frighteningly fast. Ellsworth CS is just plain old frightening. Truthly! :rolleyes:
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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man, i dug that day! the flux was unexpectedly at home in that chop. even with the speed we carried through it and my less than stellar tire choice, the chassis felt so predictable and stable even when it left the ground for long periods of time. a spot may have been better but i wasnt complainin.

think hard on this when considerin yer options bow-man. might it be the perfect 4" bike? id have to say so. i liked it enough to want a replacement after sellin (due to money issues) and subsiquently destroyin my 1st flux in a nasty roof rack incident the day it was to ship. i dont often make lateral moves when buldin bikes.
 

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I don't do PC
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Fun day, yeah that section was fairly steep, notice I'm behind the saddle, it got steeper and chunkier though, I was wishing for my bigger bike and some armor for a few of the sections.

bowerg- I had a Truth back in '01/02 and it rode very nice, unfortunately it broke twice in 2 years and I experienced some of the infamous Ells. warranty hassles. They have since changed the lev ratio and use a 2" stroke shock and the bike seems more durable, the Flux uses a higher lev ratio and a 1.5" stroke shock. I don't think it makes much of a diff in the ride but it supposedly puts less stress on the seatube where breaks are fairly common with the design. The main diff between these 2 bikes IMO is the company standing behind them, they both will ride great but if you do have a problem then you would MUCH rather have Turner on the downtube than Ells.
 

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involuntary dismounter
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Pictures never do justice to the terrain. That was a pretty techy little section. One of many on that trail.

Here's Rick and me, same section, different angle.
that's some nice terrain boys! i'm impressed :thumbsup:. you old farts have SKILLZ :)...who knew??? :p:D

let's just say i'd be wearing a lot of padding on that ride! they don't call me 'involunary dismounter' for nothing! :)
 

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Lay off the Levers
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That's a fun looking decent... I'd love to blaze it on my RFX...I could definately see how it make me slow down on my XC'd Spot.
 
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