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Help! I am so confused about what to get in a new bike. I need to replace my 26" Gary Fisher HiFi.

I rode an Ibis Ripmo the other day and loved it, so the new Ripley seems like a great choice, but I'm not sure about 29" wheels. I am a 5'4" woman. The Ibis guy told me they build their smalls for their 5'0 female marketing director, but I'm still not sure that's the right wheel size for me.

My issue is that I can corner downhill on my local trail really well on my HiFi, but on the same trail I had to stop on a few switchbacks to maneuver the Ripmo, and even a little for the 27.5" Mojo. Granted, I don't know if the Ibis demo handlebars not being the right size for me would affect that a little to? How hard is it to learn some new skills and get used to cornering the 29" bikes?

Is there a Ripley equivalent with a 27.5" wheel? Is that a Santa Cruz 5010?

I'm doubting myself on the slackness today, though. Since I loved the Ripmo, I thought I should go slacker. And everyone on this forum seems to be going nuts over the new Ripley. But I had so much fun on my HiFi today and it's a 70 degree head angle, which I guess would be similar to a Liv Pique. And I am a terrible climber. I don't know that I like their price point for not coming with a carbon frame, though. I was only hoping to spend around $4000, and that's up from my prior budget simply because I liked the Ibis bikes.

Any thoughts or suggestions? Or should I just stop whining and get myself to Brevard and demo some more? Or just get the Ripley and get used to a 29" bike? Any de-confusioning is appreciated!!
 

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I think you could ride a 29er, but something like a Ripmo may just be too much in terms of wheelbase and slackness. I don't see why a Ripley wouldn't work. Having come from a 27.5 to a Giant 29 Pro (I'm 5'9" tall) I'm not likely to go back. At 5'4", you are well within the range of people who could ride 29ers.
The women's forum might be a good place to voice your concerns.
 

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aka bOb
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Agree with MSU fully. Also you need to realize with any change there is going to be a little bit of a learning curve as well as a proper setup/fit. I find it's hard to get much out of a demo when the bike isn't setup exactly how I like em.
 

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Formerly of Kent
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Should I get a Ripley, or is there a 27.5" equivalent?

Kate Courtney is your size and just stomped a hole in the best riders on the world today on her 29er.

I'd suggest you ride on again but swap/flip the stem, move spacers up and down as necessary, and most likely move the shifters, brakes, dropper remote and grips in a bit. For a person your height, bar height is critical. Both for climbing AND front end grip.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Kate Courtney is your size and just stomped a hole in the best riders on the world today on her 29er.

I'd suggest you ride on again but swap/flip the stem, move spacers up and down as necessary, and most likely move the shifters, brakes, dropper remote and grips in a bit. For a person your height, bar height is critical. Both for climbing AND front end grip.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Absulutley correct. Without proper setup a demo doesn't tell the full story. Try both with the proper adjustments on your favourite trails.
 
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