Niner R.I.P. 9 - Review

Sep 29, 2014
by Richard Cunningham  


Niner’s R.I.P. 9 won’t raise too many eyebrows based upon its statistics. Today, one can choose from a hundred well-apportioned mid-travel 29ers with welded-aluminum, 125-millimeter-travel frames that are similar to the R.I.P. 9’s, and its geometry does not break any rules either. Many trail riders who sell themselves as technical specialists might pass over the mid-travel Niner because it isn’t carbon, or because it lacks the super-slack head angle that is so fashionable at present. The R.I.P. 9, however, is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and those who own or have ridden one will tell that the R.I.P.’s performance far exceeds the sum of its parts.


Niner R.I.P. 9 2014
  Hard to argue with the performance of SRAM's XX1 drivetrain. We switched out the stock 32-tooth chainring with a 30-tooth item to compensate for the larger diameter wheels. We admired the pounding that the RockShox Revelation fork could handle, although a Pike would be more in keeping with the Niner's abilities. Niner's carbon RDO handlebar is flat, wide and, as it turned out, just right for the R.I.P.


Construction

Niner released the first R.I.P. 9 in 2006, and since then it has seen minor changes in its construction and geometry, but for the most part, it was a winner out of the blocks. The aluminum chassis features curved, butted and manipulated tubes that are uniquely formed using pressurized air. The use of hollow forgings at major frame junctions keeps the weight of the chassis low and its stiffness high. Niner’s CVA (Constantly Varying Arc) dual-link rear suspension allows the R.I.P. 9’s chainstays to be comfortably short, because most of the lower rocker mechanism is tucked under the bottom bracket. In addition, CVA is claimed to provide efficient pedaling while, at the same time, freeing up the rear suspension to do its task unhindered by drivetrain forces.
Details:

• Frame: Aluminum, CVA dual-link-type suspension, ISCG 05 mounts, 142-12mm Maxle.
• Wheel size: 29 inch
• Suspension travel: 125mm - rear, 120 to 140mm - front.
• Minimum stand-over clearance: 27.7 inches (704mm)
• Fork: 130mm RockShox Revelation RCT3 (tested)
• Shock: RockShox Monarch RT3
• Front derailleur: top-pull, direct-mounting provided
• Bottom bracket compatibility: 73mm threaded
• Sizes available: Small. Medium, Large, X-large
• Build: Semi-custom, SRAM XX1/RockShox components
• Weight as tested: 26.6 pounds (12,08kg) no pedals
• MSRP frame, Monarch RC3 shock and Maxle: $1849 USD ($4999 est. complete)
Niner R.I.P. 9 2014
  Niner's CVA rear suspension has a proven history, and it was the first, possibly the only, design penned specifically for 29-inch-wheel frames. The lower of the two rockers pivots ahead of and below the bottom bracket. The low-slung swingarm provides extra tire clearance.


The R.I.P. 9 is detailed to be as trouble free as possible. With large axles and bearings at key suspension pivots. The R.I.P’s external cable and hose routing bucks current trend. Running the lines inside the frame looks great, but we prefer the simplicity and ease of service that external routing provides. ISCG 05 mounts ensure that the bike can be configured for all-mountain use, or they are there for those who simply prefer to run a chainguide. The frame’s low-swooping top tube provides best-in-class stand-over clearance and, while we are on the subject, there is adequate clearance for 2.4-inch tires out back. Niner sells a lot of frames, so it specs a threaded bottom bracket shell in response to customer demand and, while most Niners will probably never see a front derailleur, there is a direct-mount boss on the seat tube and housing stops are placed where needed. R.I.P. 9 frames come in small, medium, large and X-large sizes, and in either black Licorice, or lime green metallic colors. The MSRP for the frame, with a Monarch shock, seat-clamp and Maxle axle is $1849 USD.

Suspension options for the R.I.P. 9 are variable, with all builds sporting a RockShox Monarch damper and a selection of Fox and RockShox forks. Your fork of choice can affect the bike’s geometry, which is actually encouraged. Niner says that the bike will accept forks from 120-millimeter to 140-millimeter strokes and provides a chart that depicts the numbers generated by the two extremes. Those who are too lazy, or simply can’t read print as small as the text on the geometry chart should know that the head angle begins at 70.5 degrees and drops up to 69 degrees, while the bike’s bottom bracket drop varies between 29 and 22 millimeters (about one fourth inch). Rear suspension travel, however, is limited to 125-millimeters. Our test bike was custom built by Niner with a 130-millimeter RockShox Revelation fork, which set its geometry squarely between the two extremes. More about that later.


Component Builds

Niner offers the R.I.P. 9 as a complete bike in four well-appointed build kits that range from $4699 to $2599, with one SRAM X1 one-by-eleven option and three with Shimano two-by-ten drivetrains. Our test bike, however, was a custom build that was intended to showcase the R.I.P’s versatility as both a nimble XC trailbike and a technical all-mountain shredder. Our build was highlighted by a SRAM XX1 drivetrain, Avid X0 Trail Brakes, and RockShox suspension in the form of a Monarch RT3 shock and a Revelation RCT3 fork. The dropper post was a RockShox Reverb, and the 50-millimeter aluminum Trail stem and 780-millimeter carbon RDO handlebar were Niner products. Wheels were American Classic AM 29s, rolling on 2.3-inch Schwalbe Nobby Nic tires. Without pedals, our test bike came in at 12.08 kg (26,57 pounds) and the estimated MSRP for a similar build would be just under $5000 USD

During the course of testing, we switched out the fork to a 140-millimeter-stroke Formula Thirtyfive 29, changed the Niner foam 'Grrrips' to Teva lock-ons, and experimented with various wheel and tire combinations. Another noteworthy change was dropping the standard 32-tooth chainring to a 30-tooth, which improved the bike’s usefulness on extended climbs.

Niner R.I.P. 9 geometry 2014




bigquotesNiner's R.I.P. 9 is nimble on the trail, and it can out-turn almost any bike I've ridden on a tight switchback. What I didn't expect was how well it stayed planted while I was maching down chunky descents.

Fussy is not a word in the R.I.P. 9's vocabulary. Set the shock sag somewhere between 20 and 30 percent, turn the rebound damping dial somewhere near the middle, and you are pretty much good to go. The fork setup requires a little more precision, because once you get a feel for the bike's handling, you'll probably be driving the fork to the limit of its travel on every descent. We discovered that running the spring rate and low-speed compression damping a little higher than a "normal" XC/trail setup provided the best performance. We ran the RockShox Revelation fork at a maximum of 20-percent sag - closer to 15 - and set the low-speed compression six to seven clicks in from wide open. That said, softer settings will not upset the R.I.P. 9's handling or cornering much, but you'll be running the O-ring to the top the moment that descending becomes enjoyably steep and rough.

Rolling out: In stock trim, with its 2.3-inch Schwalbe Nobby Nic tires, the R.I.P. gets up to speed quickly and can maintain momentum over a wide range of trail surfaces - to the point where it had us questioning why we were recently becoming so enamored with mid-sized wheels. Of course, most riders would anticipate that a lightweight, 125-millimeter-travel 29er would roll fast, but few would believe that the Niner's steering would feel as agile as the R.I.P's. At singletrack speeds, there is no tendency for the front wheel to wander under power and the bike tracks with effortless precision. We could choose to pick our way around imbedded rocks or hold a straight line across them with a light grip on the handlebar. A relatively slack, 73.5-degree seat tube angle puts enough of the rider's weight on the rear tire to maintain uphill traction without requiring any antics. Similarly, we found the top tube to be long enough to allow riders to remain centered over the bike when transitioning from level ground to steep-ish descents. Summed up, the initial feel of the R.I.P. 9 in an XC/trail situation is efficient under power and light at the controls. It's an easy bike to ride.

Niner RIP 9
bigquotesSwitching to a more aggressive tread turned the Niner into a little green monster and we made short work of some of local climbs that often force accomplished bike-handlers to their feet.

Climbing: Ascending moderate grades aboard the Niner was almost easy on the legs. Pedaling felt firm enough and acceleration was adequately crisp without employing the Monarch RT3 shock's low-speed compression lever. Climbers who spend a lot of time out of the saddle, however, will find the R.I.P. 9's rear-suspension action too mushy for extended efforts and the shock's pedaling platform option then becomes a must. "Easy on the legs" is a relative term, because the R.I.P came stock with a 32-tooth chainring, which is fine for athletes in top shape, or those surrounded by midget mountains. Switching to a smaller, 30-tooth chainring (a popular choice for 29er trail riders) made a big difference in low speed pulling power without noticeably affecting the bike's top speed. Considering how tuned in Niner is to its clientele, we wonder why the 30-tooth ring isn't a standard item.

By small-wheel standards, the Niner's 17.9-inch chainstays are as long as fishing rods, but in the context of the R.I.P.'s 29-inch wheels and adapted geometry, they transfer sufficient weight rearward to to claw up some seriously steep and loose climbs - but not with the stock Schwalbe Nobby Nic tires. The Nics sent us scratching like hungry hens when the climbs got technical. Switching to a more aggressive tread turned the Niner into a little green monster and we made short work of some of local climbs that often force accomplished bike-handlers to their feet. It was there where we learned to keep the Niner's CVA suspension unlocked to take advantage of its ability to take the edge off the rocks and roots without adversely affecting our leg power.

Turning: Most 29ers that we have tested need an extra few degrees of lean and some coaxing of the handlebars to hold a tight line around a corner, the R.I.P 9 does not. Its steering feels light at the bars and the bike feels well balanced front-to-rear, so transitions like hard-left to hard-right turns feel almost seamless. Like all 29er, the R.I.P. stands tall, and there is a slight awkwardness that can be felt by those stepping up from smaller wheels when throwing the bike around in tight singletrack situations. That said, the R.I.P. 9 has an uncanny ability to steer around tight corners without pushing the front tire. We had the opportunity to ride a number of dodgy switchbacks, both uphill and down, and the Niner felt like it would bend in half if we asked it to. We could steer around turns that had others pivoting on the front wheel to clean them.

Niner RIP 9
bigquotesMost 29ers that we have tested need an extra few degrees of lean and some coaxing of the handlebars to hold a tight line around a corner, the R.I.P 9 does not.

At speed, the stock tires were a limiting factor. Most of our test rides took place on slippery hard pack and rocky terrain where Nobby Nics suffer most. In their defense, they hook up well enough and few, if any, large-volume tires can match their low weight and rolling efficiency. The saving grace for the Nics was in the Niner's ability to shrug off miscalculated cornering speeds by sliding both the front and rear tires evenly. The front tire rarely pushed through a turn, which boosted our confidence and made it easier to excuse their lack of edging traction. Predictably, with better tires, the bike's cornering speed improved and with the drifting lessons afforded by our Schwalbe sessions, we could choose and hold our lines with precision. The Nics were abandoned for the remainder of the test.

Technical Riding: Niner's R.I.P. 9 is nimble on the trail, and it can out-turn almost any bike I've ridden on a tight switchback. What I didn't expect was how well it stayed planted while I was maching down chunky descents. We used the R.I.P 9 for product testing, so we kept it for a much longer period of time than we would normally hold onto a review bike. During that time, we also reviewed some very capable AM/enduro machines in the 160-millimeter travel category on many of the same trails. After blasting the descents for a couple of weeks on burley bikes with nearly double the suspension travel, one would assume that hopping back on a short travel XC trailbike like the Niner would be a scary proposition, but it was not.

The R.I.P 9 likes to go fast, and it is perfectly happy to bounce down rough and rocky trails that would feel like a challenge aboard a decent AM bike - but you will take a beating in the process. It jumps straight and if only for that reason, we returned from every ride with the O-rings maxed on the fork and shock, The balance of the bike is such that the rider feels like he or she is low in the frame and hovering almost exactly between the front the rear wheels. So, when the R.I.P. is banging off boulders and bumps, as long as you stay off the saddle, the bike sort of shuffles around below you without getting tossed off line. Yes, you can feel the rear end flexing now and then. Yes, you will be using up all of your fork travel under hard braking, but it's one heck of a ride.

Niner RIP 9
bigquotesYes, you can feel the rear end flexing now and then. Yes, you will be using up all of your fork travel under hard braking, but it's one heck of a ride.

Component Check

Tires: We beat this topic to death already. The R.I.P. 9 likes to be ridden with precision, so it stands to reason that a tire with good edging blocks would better match its performance. We used a number of choices with good results and ended up with 2.25-inch WTB Trail Boss tires on both ends.

Wheels: We thought that the American Classic AM 29 wheels would be thrashed after almost two seasons of riding, but they are straight, tight, and only slightly dinged. Who'd a thunk that such a lightweight aluminum wheelset would go the distance?

Brakes With all the ruckus about SRAM's new Guide brakes and the Shimano's ICE XTR and XT stoppers, we had great luck with the Niner's Avid X0 Trail Brakes. The power was strong and the contact point, soft enough to offer great traction control on Southern California's sometimes slippery dirt.

Suspension: We used two forks: the 130-millimeter-stroke RockShox Revelation, which put in a better than average performance - especially considering that it was a 29er fork with 32-millimeter stanchion tubes. The second fork was Formula's new Thirtyfive-29, with 140 millimeters of travel and stiffer, 35-millimeter stanchions. The addition of the longer and stiffer Formula fork enhanced the bike's high-speed handling and cornering to a degree that convinced us to recommend a similar upgrade for potential R.I.P. 9 customers. Niner now offers the RockShox Pike in a 140-millimeter version for the R.I.P. The Monarch RT3 shock was overwhelmed occasionally, but it never gave up. If it fits, perhaps Niner will offer a reservoir-type Monarch Plus as an upgrade for hard chargers.

Handlebar: A 780-millimeter flat carbon handlebar? When we first grabbed hold, perhaps it was the look that swayed our judgments, but the RDO handlebar didn't feel right. Later, the wisdom of Niner's ways became apparent. A 29er stands tall, and it gets even taller when you add the height of a 130 or 140-millimeter fork. Niner's flat bar puts the rider at the same height as a 26-inch AM bike would be with 160 millimeters of fork travel and a 25-millimeter riser bar. It works.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesAluminum probably doesn't get the love and respect that it deserves as a frame material, but if you are one of those riders who gets it - and you are in the market for a big-wheel trailbike that is truly versatile, show up at a Niner Demo day and ride an R.I.P. 9. It is light enough to give your local Strava crowd a run for their money on the climbs and it has enough handling in the bank to keep the local hot shoes in sight on the downs. Of course, there are a number of trailbikes that can lay claim to those two extremes, but only the rarest of the breed can cover all the bases between them as well as Niner's little green monster. The R.I.P. 9 strikes a dissonant chord in the present symphony of acute specialization, with bike makers targeting each of their models to reflect a specific purpose. If you want, you can buy a machine perfected for Freeride, Enduro, XC, DH, AM or Trail - or if you want, you can buy a mountain bike. The R.I.P. 9 isn't carbon, it has nothing to prove, no contests to win - and it is pretty darn close to the perfect mountain bike. - RC






87 Comments

  • 50 3
 Anything that is spec'd with a threaded BB gets a thumbs up from me.
  • 29 1
 Not fair for this bike to be reviewed today....
  • 5 2
 Mr Cunningham does not like flying high.
  • 6 1
 because we all took the time to read this when we could be watching RAMPAGE videos!!!
  • 12 1
 HAHA! Bad timing for a trailbike test for sure. Just move the decimal point: Aggie = 76 feet, RC = 7.6 feet
  • 1 7
flag jedrzeja (Sep 29, 2014 at 14:37) (Below Threshold)
 I think it is not so much timing, but the wheel size. Anyway I found Your posting this article seven minutes before the finals funny, like sort of ignorance manifestation. My definition of flying low is up to 6 feet high and 30 feet forwards. I don't think I will ever get any bigger, unless I visit Whistler. I think it is all practice and getting used to. I prefer to fly longer than higher.
  • 3 6
 Move the decimal further RC: .76 feet Wink
  • 26 5
 ....and back to rampage
  • 22 6
 These three quotes from RC about the bike' s handling seem to be completely at odds with each other:

"Niner's R.I.P. 9 is nimble on the trail, and it can out-turn almost any bike I've ridden on a tight switchback."

"Like all 29er, the R.I.P. stands tall, and there is a slight awkwardness that can be felt by those stepping up from smaller wheels when throwing the bike around in tight singletrack situations."

"The balance of the bike is such that the rider feels like he or she is low in the frame and hovering almost exactly between the front the rear wheels."

So the bike can out-turn any 26" bike in tight switchbacks(simply not believable btw), even though it feels "stands tall" and the bigger wheels make it admittingly "awkward" compared to the handling of a smaller-wheeled bike in tight switchbacks, but "the rider feels like he or she is low in the frame".

This is a solid 29er, but no way does it handle tight switchbacks better than a 26" bike with short chainstays.

If you are going to lie about a bike, at least make your big lie compatible with your other claims about the bike's handling.
  • 5 4
 Well said. Polish that turd!
  • 9 4
 70 degree head angle ... no .. .nuff said
  • 7 6
 Then theres this:

"So, when the R.I.P. is banging off boulders and bumps, as long as you stay off the saddle, the bike sort of shuffles around below you without getting tossed off line." - This is the proper way to navigate technical terrain, on any bike, not saying much about the bike here.

"we returned from every ride with the O-rings maxed on the fork and shock" - This is supposed to happen. Whats the point of having all that travel if you dont' use it?

A buddy and I recently demoed this bike, and agile is not exactly the first word that comes to mind. Quiet is not the second work either. This looks like a paid review to get noobs to the sport onto this specific bike.
  • 5 1
 Excuse me @CaptainVonAwesome. What does it mean to "Polish", since I feel I should know?
  • 2 0
 To make smooth via rubbing
  • 4 1
 @jedrzeja Relax, I am only bigoted when it comes to wheel size.

www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=turd+polishing
turd polishing:
The act of trying to make something hopelessly weak and unattractive appear strong and appealing. An impossible process that usually results in a larger, uglier turd.
  • 3 0
 I'm relaxed! I just used your capital letter to check you out.
@shredjekyll We're all smooth and shiny here.
  • 3 2
 Lost in translation I think.
  • 17 1
 Protour^^^ while the riding descriptions may seem contradictory, they are accurate:

You can turn the bars 90 degrees on steep, chunky switchbacks and it will easily coast around without pushing the front tire - my 26ers (Pivot Mach 57 and Litevillle 301) can't duplicate it in the same corners.

Like all 29ers, it takes a while to get used to in the turns, but once that period is over, it feels light at the grips and the front wheel turns in proportionately when leaned into turns. I atttribute this to the slightly steeper head angle and the fork offset working well together.

The chainstays are longer than a 26 or 27.5 bike, and the seat angle is pretty standard, which causes the riding position to be very centered between the wheels, Add that to an inch of bottom bracket drop - something that 26 inch bikes simply can't have. - and the feel is exactly as if the rider is lower and centered in the frame.

I was not expecting to like the R.I.P as much as I did and neither did the other riders who tested the bike. I was sure that the results off this test were going to get shelled, but that is how the bike works, so why lie and say it any other way?
  • 1 0
 Owned this bike for about a year. Loved it, but it was a tiny bit short on travel for me. Pedals great, descends great!
  • 3 0
 Lol ... jedrzeja doesn't know Polish from polish (shit from shinola???) Whoops my redneck's showing
  • 1 1
 Read and think it over again.
  • 4 0
 Laugh a little . we're all dirt mongers here
  • 2 3
 I laugh all the time, believe me. I just have a specific sense of humour.
  • 2 0
 Well then I'll laugh for you coz I'm just that kinda guy!
  • 4 2
 If I could be born again, I would like to be a Canadian.
  • 2 0
 @captainvonawesome-- I think this sums up your comment a little better--
www.youtube.com/watch?v=cf4C9ssuPjE
Enjoy! Great comment btw.
  • 1 0
 I'd rethink that if I were you... the beer isn't as good as they say
  • 3 0
 Hahaha I just got that polish thing from the Polish guy!! Total translation gap!! That's hilarious!! Pawwwwlish not Poll ish. Funny. Thanks for a good laugh.
  • 3 0
 Reignonme is my hero!
  • 2 1
 Take your time @Reignonme
  • 1 0
 Is Whistler as good as they say?
  • 1 0
 I don't know, it's like a thousand mile away from me. It's just as much a dream for me as for you most likely
  • 1 0
 2475 km from me
  • 1 1
 Whistler is awesome, but many trails are getting reworked this year, so hurry before they are all blue runs...
  • 16 3
 R.I.P = Rampage Is Phenomenal.
  • 9 1
 Did an Enduro race this past weekend at Burke Mountain in Vermont, the pro guy who won the whole series (3 races) rides one of these and it is pretty insane how capable they are
  • 6 0
 Looks great. I'd be interested to know how it compares to my aluminium Stumpy FSR Evo 29er, especially in terms of weight. Not that I'm changing any time soon, but this might have been an alternative I'd have considered.

As an aside people need to stop selling bikes with Nobby Nics on. I know some people like them, but the rest of us hate them. It's £80 for a new set of tyres these days, so having to change them straight away is every bit as annoying as swapping the bars or the stem.
  • 2 1
 *edit - just noticed the weight is in the article, sub 27lbs is pretty good for a bike like this
  • 11 5
 Oh c'mon, as if anyone wants to read this today.... Even my Nan is sitting here in anticipation for Rampage. Mind you, I think she has a soft spot for RC.
  • 5 1
 A good review (pretty smitten -- but bikes can do that to a man).

The change from 32t to 30t to "compensate for larger diameter wheels" and "improve the bike's usefulness on extended climbs" all sounds like an evasion. Chanrings in general need to be smaller. (If you do the math, you see why. ~2,300 mm cir, x 30/11 = 2.72 x 180 RPM x 60 = 67.56 Kilometer per hour = 41.9 MPH. i.e. basically nobody is spinning out that gear on a any bike much less a 29er. (Is my math right?) Why are bike companies taking so long to act on that? Sensitive male egos? MTB has gone from 40t chainrings to 32t. The standard should really be 28-24t with the current 11-42t cassettes.

Put differently, how many times does the average rider wish for a shorter gear vs. wish for a taller gear? This is not the first time pride has inhibited progress. Thoughts?
  • 3 0
 Riding 4X, downhill and also some XC i find that even with a 11-28 cassette running with a 34 tooth chainring i spin out all the time! If the standard went diwn to 28-24t chainrings the problem will be even worse!
  • 2 0
 Um I have a hard time giving up my triple due to the 44t chain ring on it that I use a lot... especially on the Tour de NIMBA I just rode.
  • 1 0
 I see your point but I have to disagree. I mostly use a 34t ring (I run a 3x9 setup) and I wouldn't like to have anything smaller than a 34 as a main ring because 34x11 yields me a good pedal control of the bike on the downs. I also sometimes happen to hit 40-50 km/h on some descents so there a 34t ring also helps a lot not spinning for nothing during these fast downhills.

Also one of the reasons I actually keep a 3x setup is that I love to put a 42t for long and techy downhill sections where an immediate feedback from the pedal is a must IMO. So no, I would not like to have a smaller ring.
  • 2 0
 Barkit - Great point on the pedal feedback.

Craig-Hinchliffe - Any sense what your RPM is?
  • 5 0
 Who on earth pedals at 180rpm? I am pretty much spinning out at about 120 in the saddle on a road bike. Out of the saddle on rough terrain and you can drop that even further.
  • 1 0
 It's kinda funny that he's recommending a 30t changeover, as that still skews the gear-inches compared to a 26". It's probably because he's a strong enough rider to push a 30t on a 29" & doesn't realize that he can push a harder gear than many. To get the same final gearings as an XX1 with 32t on a 26", you need a 28t. That's actually one of the big reasons SRAM came out with the cranks for XX1 that can take those smaller chainrings: 29ers.

Keep in mind guys, it seems like you're all running 10sp: that 10t cog on 11sp SRAM is mathematically equivalent to having a 2t bigger chainring.
  • 2 0
 There are so many variables for cog setup there's no way that one could work for everyone. Bike, terrain, fitness, and personal preference are all a factor. So weird this mentality that "whatever I ride is the best so everyone else should too"
  • 4 0
 Many core trail riders use 28-tooth chainrings on ther 29ers, but most cranksets have 104 BCD spiders and the 30t is the smallest that wiill fit. Spec'ing a 30 is a no-brainer for a bike mfgr - and a 29ers, especially ones with 2.3 to 2.4 inch tires, need lower climbing gears.
  • 1 0
 I switched from a triple to a 34t when I realized that I didn't need my tiny gear to climb most of the big hills in my hood. But there are a few routes I use that require rolling on pavement for a while and I certainly wish I had a taller gear for that. I really have to spin to keep my speed and even spinning my hardest I'm about 2-3 mph slower with that 34t.
  • 1 0
 Sure RC, but this bike has got an XX1 crankset on it, so it seems like speccing a 28t is just as rational. Better would be to offer a choice, though, especially at the price of XX1 rings. Hopefully most shops that sell these are smart enough to give the rider the right info, & swap it out for them if then need a different one.
  • 2 0
 I had the previous generation of this bike, the 2012-2013 model. It was a great bike, I agree with a lot of RC's assessment, but I didn't find it squishy in stand-and-mash climbing situations. My bike had a Fox RP23 shock. With the propedal on, it was pretty firm. The bike is a GREAT climber, it's almost like a magic carpet uphill. I was also pleasantly surprised at how it could hold its own on rough descents compared to bikes with more travel. I don't know if I would agree it's super-nimble on switchbacks, despite being much slacker, my Nomad V2 (26") gets around switchbacks a lot better.

This is a great all around trailbike if 29" is the wheelsize for you. I would also second RC's suggestion to pony up for a beefier fork, I first had a Marz 44 Micro Ti (32mm stanchions) on it. When I upgraded to a Fox 34, that totally transformed the bike and gave it a much more solid feel.
  • 2 0
 "The R.I.P 9 likes to go fast, and it is perfectly happy to bounce down rough and rocky trails that would feel like a challenge aboard a ***descent*** AM bike"

I think that's a typo, but in this context it works.
  • 1 0
 Owned the previous generation and absolutely loved the bike but I gave it up for a Kona Entourage to build my confidence on bigger trails. RC is spot on about feeling centered in the bike and how well it holds a line and corners. The RIP9 is an awesome bike but I was limited by the amount of suspension and steep HTA (older generation w/ 120mm was 70.5*). Very fun bike though, I miss it tons for trail riding!
  • 3 0
 I was just thinking about riding Cowles Big Rock Trail today. Maybe I'll ride it tomorrow.
  • 1 0
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  • 1 0
 One thing not mentioned in the review is, Niner's alloy frames only have a 2 year warranty. I was considering buying on until I saw that on their website.
  • 1 0
 Slight correction: the shock on this bike is a Monarch RT3, not RC3. It's an inline shock. The RC3 is the Monarch Plus which is a piggyback shock.
  • 5 3
 29" wheels? Thought everything was going 650b.
  • 1 0
 Well I guess they painted themselves into a corner with the company name.
  • 2 0
 Could you guess a 29er would have so many comments about Rampage?
  • 1 0
 What do you think of this compared to the process 111?? Just interested in what RC would pick as a do it all shredder
  • 2 0
 I wouldn't pick the RIP as a do it all sherdder - it's an awesome XC trailbike that can be pushed pretty hard, but nowhere in the same league as the Kona Process. My pick at this very moment is probably the Intense Tracer 275c
  • 1 0
 Thanks RC great choice as always
  • 2 3
 The price is 5K. Why not get a carbon Santa Cruz Tallboy LT at that point... I've owned a RIP9 but they are heavy and the suspension has almost no feedback compared to VPP. Its not a climbers bike IMO.
  • 1 1
 I don't know about this RIP-9, but the Tallboy LT is not a descender's bike. I guess it depends on which emphasis you prefer.
  • 2 0
 Why would you think its not a descenders bike? Its a trail bike, its made to go both up and down. 5.3" of travel with a 29" wheel is really close to say, the Enduro with 6" or the carbine 29er... 69.4 degree steer tube angle with a 140mm fork but you could slack it out with a 150mm fork if desired to run an angle set. Having done a lot of descending on my Tallboy, probably most notably Downieville, - which I have also done on a RIP 9 - the Tallboy takes the down much better... not sure how you can claim a Tallboy lt is not a descenders bike, thats makes no sense.
  • 1 0
 His face kinda say otherwise about the bike being stable. check out the on the trail pics.
  • 3 1
 nice
  • 3 1
 29er on rampage.
  • 3 2
 wait a second... there is something else than Rampage ??
  • 1 1
 The future of bigger wheels is very close 27.5 and 29er you pick _____o^o_____O^O_____
  • 5 6
 This bike will rip at the rampage if they hold it at Bonnieville. Seriously, why bother with a 120mm niner when you can have a 150mm sixer that is more nimble and fun?
  • 3 0
 I think if you rode the Rampage on the R.I.P, both you and the bike might be wearing those letters
  • 1 0
 If I rode it on any bike that would be the outcome...
  • 1 0
 I love my RIP, and have a Pike on my Xmas list!
  • 2 1
 add a fullface helmet...
  • 2 1
 R.I.P
  • 1 0
 The price? anyone
  • 1 0
 $1850 frame only
$3300 SLX build w/ Fox 34
$4000 X1 build w/ Fox 34
$4700 XT build w/ Pike RCT3

Great bike - owned it for about a year before I gave it up for another inch of rear travel.
  • 1 2
 i you wanna die ....
  • 1 3
 well it was supposed to be a vomit Gif... niners are ugly shit bikes.
  • 1 0
 I liked the the looks of the old RIP better, but this year's WFO is pretty boss lookin'.
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