You have a closet-full of argyle knee socks, superhero capes, and even a tutu. You spend your weekends riding and carrying your bike through mud, up stairs, over bales of hay, and when not riding you are heckling those who are. You're an expert at grabbing a beer, while running…with a bike in the other hand. You are a cyclocross addict.
What better way to affirm your love of this off-kilter discipline of cycling than with the Ridley X-Night Shimano/Ultegra Disc Bike. In the heart of Belgium, where some of the most revered Spring Classics are played out, where cycling is a national pastime, where a little snow and mud never canceled a group ride, Ridley cyclocross bikes are forged -- your passion is their passion.
The X-Night has seven World Cyclocross Championship titles to its name. While we don't think that medals and trophies are everything, what speaks volumes is that Ridley looked at the original X-Night with an eye to make it even better. To do so, its engineers completely redesigned it. The new X-Night bears very little resemblance to its predecessor. Gone are the oversized, flat-bottomed tubes and integrated seatmast inspired by the Damocles road frame. Using 24-ton high modulus carbon fiber, Ridley was able to design a cyclocross frame that draws upon the ultralight Helium SL Road Frame. Why? Whereas carbon that is able to withstand 24 tons of pressure per square inch may seem like overkill, using such strong carbon means that tubing is made both stronger and smaller. Starting at the top down, Ridley removed the integrated seatmast -- resulting in a sigh of relief from taller riders who try to cram their frames into travel cases -- and replaced it with a removable 27.2mm seatpost. This in turn translated into slimmer seatstays, top tube, and down tube, which means less jarring on hardpacked courses -- riding oversized carbon tubing on the road is comfortable, whereas on a rutted cyclocross course it leads to bouncy rides and a sore bum. More significant, this redesign shaved nearly 350g, bringing the frame in at under 1kg. The geometry also received subtle changes, with a slightly lower (3mm) bottom bracket -- still plenty high enough to avoid rocks, and a shorter wheelbase (9mm) for faster handling. Also, the front end has been given a lower head tube for riders who prefer a more aggressive cockpit position.
Perhaps the most important redesign on the X-Night is that it is now disc compatible. Disc brakes provide superior braking power and more subtle modulation for extra control. Whereas the X-Fire, Ridley's penultimate frame, was released in a disc-version last season, Ridley waited to design a disc-compatible X-Night until the braking system made its way into the mainstream of road/cyclocross racing. If you prefer cantilever brakes, never fear, the new X-Night is also available cantilever-friendly frameset option. This build is equipped with Hayes CX Five disc brakes. To complement the brake system, Ridley used a full-carbon 4ZA Oryx fork. This 1-1/8 x 1-1/2in 4ZA fork uses a reinforced lower leg design to guarantee that you will not feel torsion from the brakes. In addition, larger blades also absorb vibration from rough terrain and provide a stiff front end for the micro accelerations needed after barriers. This is a perfect complement to the smaller tubing on the frame itself.
The X-Night was built up with Shimano Ultegra components for the rear derailleur and shifters, which receive the most wear and tear. Although heavier than the Dura-Ace, Ultegra is the workhorse of the Shimano line -- long lasting and durable. The front derailleur is Shimano 105 as are the chain and 12-28 cassette. Combined with the FSA SLK Light 36/46 crankset , you have all the gears you need for the gnarliest of cyclocross courses. The X-Night uses internal cabling routing for the entire drivetrain, which means cleaner lines, absence of full cable housings, and a further weight reduction of 150g. In addition, there are fewer spots for mud to cling to and less post-race cleanup. Ridley uses its 4ZA Cirrus line for the cockpit, with a Prologo Zero II Saddle perched on a Ritchy WCS seatpost. The Ridley X-Night rides on Stans ZTR Iron Cross wheels and Challenge Grifo tires. These 32mm tires have low running pressures to provide extra grip on the contours of the course.
The Ridley X-Night is innovation based on expertise. With the Shimano Ultegra Disc build, you get a race-ready bike worthy of a World Championship, straight out of the box. And while we can't give away championship jerseys, if we see you racing the X-Night, we may hand you another [Belgian] beer.
The Ridley X-Night Shimano/Ultegra Disc bike is available in sizes 50cm to 58cm and in the Black/white colorway.
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Community & Reviews
All I can say is......WOW!
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
This is the first time I've every bought a complete bike, and it will be my last (at least from Competitive Cyclist). I usually buy frames and build them up. The price was good for this ultegra fitted X-Night, so I broke tradition. Huge mistake.
The attached picture shows the handlebar tape job. Wow. How exactly could that leave the hands of a competent mechanic. It gets worse. Much Worse. Rear disc brake set up so that if brake is applied, cable would saw through the carbon seat stay. Parts falling off, cables run the wrong way, no adjustment of the derailleur (front or rear). Had to fully disassemble and rebuild myself. It would have been easier if the components were dumped in a trash bag and mailed to me.
On the positive side, the frame looks nice and it came in a big sturdy box. I'll give the frame a 4 and the rest of the experience a zero, hence the 2 rating.
Is there any way to use a top-pull Ultegra...
Is there any way to use a top-pull Ultegra CX-70 derailleur with this frame?