Ripley NX Eagle Complete Mountain Bike
Even though mountain bikes continue to get longer and slacker, we think there's a point where it can go to far. There a balance that needs to be achieved, especially for trail bikes, and thankfully Ibis takes that into consideration with the new Ripley. Though the bike does get the requisite longer-slacker-steeper treatment to bring it into modern territory, we feel it hits a sweet spot that's still capable of quick accelerations and nimble handling. The bike gets a modest 1-degree slackening of the head tube angle, lengthening the wheelbase just a bit and extending the reach in the cockpit by 45mm to give you a little more room to move around. At the same time, the seat tube is 3-degrees steeper, providing a more comfortable and efficient pedaling position for attacking climbs and racking up the miles. The Ripley 4 also gets an all-new frame with design cues borrowed from the Ripmo, allowing room for longer-travel dropper posts, shorter chainstays, and providing a boost in stiffness—all while maintaining the liveliness and reliability of the DW-Link suspension platform.
The Ripley 4’s major redesign meant that Ibis’ engineers could start from the ground up, and they chose to start with the heart-and-center of the bike, updating the dual-eccentric links used in the past to a new design based on the Ripmo, which still holds DW-Link suspension tucked neatly in the front triangle, but without as much weight, and with a huge boost in stiffness. This change in the frame’s chassis allows massive weight savings of over a half-pound on the frame alone, giving your all-mountain machine a little more pep in its step when you’re pushing up grueling climbs, and a more nimble feel when you’re flicking it around tight switchbacks.
Weight savings aside, one of the biggest benefits we see with the drop of the double-eccentric design is extra room in the seat-tube, which enables taller riders to run dropper posts up to 185mm. This long-dropper length lets Ibis’ engineers carry forward with even more geometry tweaks, like an extra-low standover height, so you can pick your frame based on reach, eliminating seat-tube size from your list of limiting factors on your new-bike hunt.
Changes didn’t stop with the eccentrics though, the Ripley has been tweaked all over, including a one-degree slacker headtube for a stretched wheelbase that adds a bit of confidence to the descents, and a three-degree steeper seat tube angle that keeps you in the center of your cockpit perched nicely for climbs. On the rear end of things, Ibis shortened the chainstays by a whopping 12-millimeters to boost stiffness, and make the suspension a bit more progressive, without letting go of the lively pedaling characteristics of the previous Ripley.
- Conquer the mountain with Ibis' speedy short-travel 29er
- Modern geometry increases the bike's capability
- Improved stability thanks to slightly slacker head tube
- Steeper seat tube for more comfortable and efficient pedaling
- Redesigned chassis boosts stiffness, drops 1/2-lb frame weight
- New frame design allows room for longer travel dropper posts
- DW-Link suspension is remarkably smooth and efficient
- Short standover height enables you to fit bike based on reach