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Spirited trail manners.
The Ripley LS Carbon GX Eagle Complete Mountain Bike balances longer, slacker geometry with the playful leanings and climbing prowess that made the original Ripley a crowd favorite. Ibis gave the 2017 Ripley the LS moniker to denote its longer and slacker geometry figures, compared to previous versions, which straddled the line between cross-country and trail.
The 2017 Ripley LS features a 15 millimeter longer top tube than the previous version, plus it's available in medium through extra-large sizes. It also features a revised 67.5-degree head tube angle, which provides a more composed and confident feel when you're picking your line down technical descents and rolling over chunky rock sections at speed. Seeing these changes in geometry, we'd forgive you for thinking the Ripley LS is just another 29er juggernaut or big-wheeled enduro brawler. However, you'll be pleasantly surprised to note that although it's more composed on fast descents and gnarly terrain, it still retains the lightning-quick handling and climbing prowess that made the original a favorite of trail riders and XC racers alike.
We'd credit this balanced feel to the 120 millimeters of DW-Link travel paired with a longer 130-millimeter RockShox Pike up front. By pairing a shorter rear travel with a slightly longer fork, you'll find the Ripley LS maintains enough composure to soak up bigger hits and chunky rock sections, but without sapping pedaling efficiency for covering long distances in the backcountry or climbing up steep terrain. DW-Link provides gobs of traction on the climbs and does an admirable job at handling square-edge hits on the descent, as well as being a poppy and playful companion for taking side-hits littered along the trail.
Besides retaining the snappy steering and handling that made the original a hit, the 2017 Ripley LS increases rear end stiffness with its Boost axle spacing, also translating to a bit more tire clearance, should you want to run a proper 2.3-inch rear tire on the trail. This Boost rear end fortifies the bracing angle of the wheel's spokes, so you'll enjoy stiffer tracking and precise handling of the 29-inch wheels. The monocoque carbon frame remains unchanged, which is a good thing if you enjoy a resoundingly stiff and lightweight frame.
Delving into the specifics of this built, you'll find SRAM's newest GX Eagle 12-speed drivetrain providing a massive range of usable gears without dealing with a pesky front derailleur. The dinner plate-sized cassette gives you plenty of range to pedal all day on epic rides with thousands of feet of climbing, followed by long descents. This 1x drivetrain sits alongside SRAM Guide RS Disc Brakes for powerful stopping force and precise modulation when your speed goes into scary-fast territories. It's then rounded out with Race Face Aeffect R Boost Wheels for all-mountain strength and precise handling in the rough stuff, thanks to the Boost axle spacing fortifying the wheel build's overall stiffness.
Medium frames cannot run the dropper post fully inserted, please call or chat in with a Gearhead if you would like to request a shorter length dropper seatpost.
- Fast, playful 29er for spirited trail rides
- 120mm DW-Link suspension for traction and efficiency
- 130mm RockShox Pike Fork for charging rowdy terrain
- 67.5° head tube angle offers balanced handling
- Carbon frame is resoundingly stiff and lightweight
- Sub 13-inch bottom bracket keeps you glued to the trail
- GX Eagle 12-speed drivetrain with massive gear range
- Race Face Aeffect R Wheelset is reliably strong
- Item #IBS004N
- Q & A
Great bike XC/trail
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
I had the pleasure of demoing this bike for the True Grit 50 mtb race in St. George, and I was thoroughly impressed. Simply put, this bike can handle just about anything you throw at it. Packaged with the DW-Link suspension system, the bike pedals well as expected. On long and rocky climbs, the bike didn’t try to wander despite its somewhat slack geometry. The tires stick to the ground without the tendency to spin out on steep loose climbs. Being accustomed to my xc hardtail, I was still happy with how it climbed.
Descending was a blast. My confidence grew the more I descended through rugged rock gardens and never felt myself needing more for the trails I was riding. With the 2.4 mountain king front tire and Fox 34, it went downhill like a true trail bike. I felt plenty stable and the bike was playful enough to make last second adjustments in an emergency.
I was curious how I would like the Pro Koryak dropper post. It performed just fine and competes with other more expensive droppers. The guide brakes with 180 rotors had plenty of stopping power and worked like a charm.
There is room to throw a 20oz water bottle in a cage below the shock, but it was a bit tight for my liking during a race. The Ripley LS is a nice option for someone who rides all kinds of terrain and appreciates a light trail bike that descends well. The GX build doesn’t break the bank but still has the ability to compete with higher end bikes that are a little lighter. At 5ft 10in, the Medium seemed to fit me well. For any questions, call me at 801-204-4678 or email me at email@example.com.