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Niner Air 9 RDO Mountain Bike Frame - 2016

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Item # NNR001X

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  • Black/Niner Red, S ($999.00)
  • Black/Niner Red, M ($999.00)
  • Black/Niner Red, L ($999.00)
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Put the "ace" in "race day."

Niner's Air 9 RDO Mountain Bike Frame is Race Day Optimized. That is to say, it's the bike you ride when your only priority is speed. Leave the cargo shorts and baggy IPA jersey at home, because this here is a pain party, and only Lycra is invited. The Air 9 RDO reflects this single-minded philosophy in everything from the low-profile disc brake mount to the inclusion of a PF30 bottom bracket instead of the heavier CYA model. Even the head badge is minimized, because Niner knows that the Air 9 RDO's target audience would rather let their legs do the talking and every extra gram is just wasted breath.

For 2016, the Air 9 RDO becomes the latest member of the RDO family to enjoy the internal molding of Niner's Carbon Compaction System (CCS). CCS gives Niner complete control over the frame's birth, making for tube walls that are virtually perfect, reducing the amount of materials required, and eliminating resin build-up. The result is a claimed weight loss of 100 grams, which is an unheard of leap between model years.

The Air 9 RDO’s geometry and tube shapes, designed to dampen chatter and distribute impact forces to the stronger parts of the frame, remain largely unchanged. Chain torque goes directly to the rear wheel via the same large bottom bracket shell and shapely chainstays of previous models, but with the added benefit of the included Maxle. Niner's World Cup-tested geometry ties the bottom bracket to a tapered head tube via a large down tube to ensure the frame tracks true and responds to every input.

The Air 9 is congenial enough to pair with your preferred tapered, cross-country fork in the 100 - 120 millimeter range. It's a little bit pickier in other areas, requiring a 31.6mm seatpost and a 34.9mm front derailleur clamp, but it now accommodates Shimano's new side-swing style of the latter. It's also compatible with Di2 out of the box, and the seat and down tubes provide enough clearance for 2.4-inch tires.

  • A race-day rocket in simpleminded pursuit of XC warfare
  • Aggressive geometry for instant responsiveness
  • CCS carbon construction is virtually perfect, inside and out
  • Drops 100g compared to the previous generation
  • Eats up chatter and reroutes impacts into stronger sections
  • Power-first BB junction for mash-happy days on singletrack
  • Maxle rear axle bumps up stiffness while you bump up climbs
  • Compatible with Di2 and mechanical groupsets

Tech Specs

Frame Material:
carbon fiber
Head Tube Diameter:
IS42/28.6|IS52/40
Headset Included:
yes, Cane Creek
Bottom Bracket Type:
73 mm PF30
Cable Routing:
internal
Front Derailleur Mount:
34.9mm high clamp
Derailleur Pull:
bottom
Seatpost Diameter:
31.6 mm
Seat Collar:
34.9 mm included
Rear Axle:
12 x 142mm
Actual Weight:
Black/Niner Red, M: 1210g
Recommended Use:
cross country
Manufacturer Warranty:
5 years

sizing chart

AIR 9 size by rider height

|

Geometry chart

Niner

Geometry Chart

 

Air 9 RDO
120mm Travel Fork
 

Seat Tube

(c-t)

Effective Top Tube

(eTT)

Stack

(S)

Reach

(R)

Stand Over

Head Tube

(HT)

Head Tube Angle

(HTo)

Seat Tube Angle

(STo)

Bottom Bracket Drop

(BBD)

Chainstay

(CS)

Wheelbase
S 15.5in 23.1in 23.6in 16.3in 27.6in 4.2in 72o 74o 2.4in 17.3in 42.2in
M 16.5in 23.7in 24in 16.9in 28.4in 4.3in 72o 74o 2.4in 17.3in 42.8in
L 19in 24.5in 24.6in 17.4in 30.6in 5in 72o 74o 2.4in 17.3in 43.6in
XL 21in 25.2in 25.3in 18in 32.2in 5.7in 72o 74o 2.4in 17.3in 44.4in
140mm Travel Fork
 

Seat Tube

(c-t)

Effective Top Tube

(eTT)

Stack

(S)

Reach

(R)

Stand Over

Head Tube

(HT)

Head Tube Angle

(HTo)

Seat Tube Angle

(STo)

Bottom Bracket Drop

(BBD)

Chainstay

(CS)

Wheelbase
S 15.5in 23.2in 23.9in 15.9in 27.8in 4.2in 71o 73o 2.1in 17.3in 42.4in
M 16.5in 23.9in 24.3in 16.5in 28.6in 4.3in 71o 73o 2.1in 17.3in 43.1in
L 19in 24.6in 24.8in 17in 30.7in 5in 71o 73o 2.1in 17.3in 43.8in
XL 21in 25.4in 25.6in 17.6in 32.4in 5.7in 71o 73o 2.1in 17.3in 44.6in

Reviews & Community

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Avg. ride time: 4h 49m per week
  • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

What all comes in the box with the frame?

Hey Ryan! With the frame will come the Cane Creek headset, the Maxle rear axle, the internal cable covers, and the seat collar. Let me know if you have any other questions and I'd be happy to help! You can reach me at 801.204.4547 or cojohnson@backcountry.com. Cheers, Connor

Avg. ride time: 3h 14m per week
  • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

does the size small have 2 bottle mounts 'inside' the main triangle?

Hi Veealmostrodeit, the small frame only has 1 mount inside the frame.

What is the best way to get the Air 9 RDO set up for SS? With the PF30 Biocentric II insert, or with the chain tensioner (as shown below in a photo)??
Thank you.

The tensioner will give you more adjustment. On my cross bike with an eccentric bb if I go from a 19t to 18t in the back the cranks will go from the rear position to the front. If I want to go bigger or smaller than those two ill need a different chain. Si it depends on how much you change your gearing.

Perfect Bike

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This geometry of this bike is perfect. The bike is so light and fast! This is the bike that I want to still be riding decades from now. It feels natural. This bike will take you to the next level of riding. It is so much fun!

What fork size do I need for this frame?

Hey Aaron - Niner recommends a 100 mm travel fork for this Air 9 RDO frame. Feel free to contact me directly if you are interested in having our Bike Shop install a fork before shipping or if you have any additional questions.

- Kyle L. - Expert Gearhead - klivingston@backcountry.com - 801-736-4337

Category Defining Performance

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

A hardtail should be fast and playful; there's a reason to go without rear suspension, and that is for more speed! The Air 9 for a long time has been one of the best hardtails out there, and the RDO continues this pedigree as not only an incredibly responsive ride, but also with reasonable compliance, and plenty of maneuverability.

While I won't take quite the same lines as my full suspension or trail bikes on the Air 9; I am still more than willing to conquer the same terrain with confidence, while making up the time difference on the climbs and flats.

If you are looking for a hardtail that defines the category, look no further!

For additional information, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Bradley Gehrig
Customer Account Manager
Office: 801–204-4541
bgehrig@backcountry.com

What parts do you have on it and how much does it weigh?

If I currently ride the Niner Jet9 Carbon in size small and am happy with the fit, does it make sense to buy a size small in the Air9 RDO even though the top tube is longer and more closely resembles that of the XS Jet9?

Hi there! The Air9 is only offered in SM-XL, so I would definitely go with the small. Please feel free to give me a shout if you have questions!



vdickinson@backcountry.com

801-736-6396 ext. 4756

Air 9 Single Speed with Enve

This is one great option for building up this frame!

Air 9 Single Speed with Enve

Coming in under 16.5 lbs, this build made me re-think what I thought I knew about 29’ers and what they could be (i.e. best and fastest in a straight line, slow off the line acceleration, often sluggish in handling even if stable). This Niner is amazingly light, totally responsive, super fast, and comfortable even as a hardtail without fork shocks. Acceleration off the line or ability to have punch/speed or change direction in technical terrain is incredible. I have not been on my other bikes in weeks. This build is a Niner Air 9 RDO (2016), most everything else ENVE components (except for: Race Face Next GL G4 crank, Fabric Alm saddle, XTR M9000 race brakes, Egg Beater 11 pedals, Formula rotors). It is just amazingly light, totally responsive, and fast. Overall, a bike I only wish I could grow into (at my age, given I’ve been mountain biking for 25 years, the bike will always be better than me….….pure ecstasy to ride…and something I’m trying to do every day since it arrived). Thanks to Virginia and helping with the build!

PS - call Virginia @ 801-736-6396 extension 4756 (or use the 800 number)...she was super helpful, incredibly responsive, and extremely knowledgable when looking at options for this Niner Air 9 RDO and ENVE custom build. I'll never buy or build another bike without working with her!

sold on the air 9 RDO

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

I ended up buying an Air 9 RDO for myself, and this is my second Niner air 9. I have been sold on them since I first rode them in 2014, ultimately impressed by performance with the price being the final straw. I am from a roadie background so I like to go fast and I like to go up. The Air 9 RDO is so efficient and agile I felt completely at home on the first ride. I set up with X01 and the bike just rips, everyone that has tried mine out has been sold. contact me directly and I can make suggestions or offer help on just the frame or complete to partial builds. kylebrown@backcountry.com

I am planning on getting a new frame and swapping the majority of the parts of my Specialized Stumpjumper Sworks 2012.
Does my BB30 XX1 156Q crankset fits? Can I transform my Roval Carbon Control SL 135mm QR to use a Maxle rear axle?

Thank you!

You should be able to run that just fine, there are actually a few options available to run on this frame. I am building one up for myself now so feel free to hit me up directly and I can help you out on it. kylebrown@backcountry.com

Avg. ride time: 9h 24m per week
  • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

What is the rear hub setup...12x142mm? Thanks!

HI Peter. Yes, it is the 142 x 12 rear spacing.

I'm considering the RDO and the aluminum Air 9.. I'm an athletic guy, yet big. 6'4 300lbs... The question is at my size.. Carbon or aluminum? Any weight limits on the frames?

Hi there and thanks for the question. Contact me direct and we can discuss this bike and which model would be better for you.

Wbranham@competitivecyclist.com

801-204-4542

Would the frame geometry be ok with a 120mm fork travel (rockshox rs1)?

Hey Eduardo - You could put a 120 mm RockShox RS1 front fork on the Air 9 RDO although Niner builds these up with a 100 mm fork. You will make the head angle a little more slack but I have heard of others doing the same thing on this frame. Feel free to contact me directly and I would be glad to help you custom build this frame into a complete bike.

- Kyle L. - Expert Gearhead

If your looking at or have rs1 fork 120mm you can always purchase the inserts to bring to 100mm or smaller 80mm. But Geometry will change quite a bit head tube angle would be my biggest concern. The head tube will have a greater degree of rake slowing steering response yes, but also putting allot of load on the joint, equaling split at head tube possibly. Since they don't spec it for 120mm and it being carbon frame. I wouldn't risk it unless you shrink fork travel to at least 100mm

Avg. ride time: 3h 37m per week
  • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

I assume this frame pairs w/ a 100 mm fork? Thanks.

Mike

Hey Michael - You are correct that the Air 9 RDO is best paired with a 100 mm fork. Feel free to contact me directly if you are interested in custom building this frame into a complete bike or with any additional questions.

- Kyle L. - Expert Gearhead

Unanswered Question

Folks at Competitive, Do you have a confirmed weight for the Medium and Large Frames? Thanks!

Avg. ride time: 13h 31m per week
  • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

what is the adapter I'll need to use this frame with a shimano XT M785 crankset?

regards,

Cleber

A PF30 Outborad adapter for 24mm crankset.

WheelsMfg and Enduro produce them.

Do you know what BB that I would buy to make this work with a GXP XX1 crank?

hey Justin you'll need an XX1 B30 crankset. If you have questions on a build feel free to contact me kylebrown@backcountry.com

Same as in my reply above but would be a PF30 Outboard to 24-22mm crankset (GXP). WheelsMfg have them.