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With my budget, this is the only frame that I can afford and Cambria Bike has had this frame on sale for the longest time. I'm not a fan of the single pivot design. My real question is for the Pantera rider/owner who has a Pushed Fox Vanilla R installed on their frame and tell me how it greatly improved the characteristics of the bike. I have a pushed rear shock currently on my Kona and the shock will most likely end up on the Pantera if I decide to buy the frame.
 

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I can't comment on the PUSHED Fox but I purchased a large Pantera frame from Cambria a few months ago and couldn't be happier.
I opted for the swinger 3 way shock so I'd have more options when it came to platform. I am still learning the shock but I have found a great setting for general XC riding. Still experimenting with urban riding settings and such.

One thing to note is make sure the shock you want to switch over is the correct size. The Pantera takes a 1.5" stroke shock ... not 2" which seems to be the new 'standard'.

I don't think the frame is outdated. It's a wonderful single pivot bike. It is super stiff and can be made stiffer with the optional superlink. It can be built pretty light but is still VERY sturdy.


If your shock will work I'd say purchase a frame with the swinger3way so you can have two shock options that are more different than a Fox RL and a PUSHED Fox.
 

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Yeah, I have a Pantera with a Swinger 3-way also. It pedals great - no bobbing at all. Mine is not as "plush" as other setups I've tried on the bike (Vanilla R and Cane Creek Cloud 9), but pedaling efficiency is really great.

I think the Pantera is probably the stiffest and strongest 4" travel single-pivot you can buy. It's much stiffer than the Santa Cruz Superlight. I've ridden a Heckler too; the Pantera is comparable (but different too). No one except the most jaded trend-surfer would claim that the Heckler is obsolete. Same for the Pantera. Believe me, it doesn't feel obsolete on the trail.

The Pantera is only an outdated bike if you feel you must have the "trickest" thing out there. I'm sure there are subtle deficiencies compared to a Saltamontes or X-5 (or the competition's equivalents). But a single-pivot bike has real advantages too - 1 pivot vs. 5 or so, depending on how you count it.

The problem with the Pantera (it's been stated on this board before) is that the average Ventana buyer has the wherewithal and the desire to get the absolute best. So the Pantera was seen as the "economy" version. In a way, the Pantera diluted the exclusivity of the brand. Usually, big market-driven companies create separate value-driven and luxury lines - Honda-Acura for example.
 

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GOLLUM said:
With my budget, this is the only frame that I can afford and Cambria Bike has had this frame on sale for the longest time. I'm not a fan of the single pivot design. My real question is for the Pantera rider/owner who has a Pushed Fox Vanilla R installed on their frame and tell me how it greatly improved the characteristics of the bike. I have a pushed rear shock currently on my Kona and the shock will most likely end up on the Pantera if I decide to buy the frame.
I had a Pantera and absolutely loved it. I broke my Pantera a few months ago. I ride hard - this is the third frame I have broken in 3 years. Ventana gave me 100% credit for my purchase price on the Pantera, which I applied to a discounted Saltamontes frame. Ventana has awesome customer service and I had no issues getting the warrantee honored.

I am very sad to see the Pantera discontinued. I rode an XL. I much prefer the Pantera to the more expensive Saltamontes. The Pantera is way more efficient climber - especially in middle chain ring. I had mine outfitted with the Float RL. Mine was not Pushed - However I just had my Fox Talas Fork Pushed and I am very pleased. I understand that rear shocks with pedal platform do not provide dramatic benefit to single pivot designs - as single pivots rely on chain tension to control pedal bob. I have a Saltamontes with the Fox RP3 and the Pantera with 2003 Fox Float RL is definitely more efficient.

I still have my Super Link that I will give you a good deal if you decide to but the Pantera. I highly recommend the super link. It gives the bike incredible lateral stiffness. Email if you are interested.
 
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