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Ribble bike buying guide - Sportive, Stealth, Gran Fondo etc

ElevatedElevated Posts: 126
edited June 2011 in Road buying advice
There seems to be a fair few people asking about the differences between the various Ribble carbon bikes that are available for around the £1000 mark. I can imagine this will only get asked more given that Ribble have introduced another three models for 2011.

I've put together what I know about these so hopefully it will allow people to make a bit more of an informed choice, as info on the Ribble site is a bit sparse.

I'm not affiliated with Ribble in any way, just a happy customer and Gran Fondo owner (hence the verified frame/fork weights below).

Evo Pro Carbon

SERIBBLEEVOPROSRAM_1_zoom.jpg

Gran Fondo (Version 2)

SERIBBGRANFONDSRAM_1_zoom.jpg

Sportive Racing

SERIBBLESPORTIVECAMP_1_zoom.jpg

Sportive Bianco

SERIBBSPORTBIANSRAM_1_zoom.jpg

New Sportive

SERIBBNEWSPORTSRAM_1_zoom.jpg

Stealth

SERIBBSTEALTHSRAM_1_zoom.jpg

Nero RC

SERIBBNERORCCAMP_1_zoom.jpg


Which one should I buy?

My advice would be to get the best frame you can afford - it's easier (and probably cheaper) to upgrade the wheels, groupset and finishing kit later. There seems to be a bewildering number of bikes on offer, but a fair few of them are just different paint jobs. Here's how they stack up:

Evo Pro frame only price £267

This frame is similar to the Planet-X SL Pro Carbon but not identical.

The frame weighs a claimed 1300g. The forks have an alloy steerer and the weight is not listed.

Choose this if...
You want the cheapest carbon frame available.


Sportive / Sportive Bianco frame only price £399 / £408

The only difference between the Sportive and the Sportive Bianco is the colour scheme.

This frame is a rebranded Pedal Force RS2

The frame weighs a claimed 975g. The forks have an carbon steerer tube and weigh a claimed 375g.

Choose this if...
You want a lighter frame/fork than the identically priced Gran Fondo, or you prefer the look of the Sportive.


Gran Fondo frame only price £399

This frame is a rebranded Dedacciai Ribelle

The frame weighs a verified 1168g. The forks have an alloy steerer tube and weigh a verified 612g.

The geometry of the Dedacciai frames like this one is a little different to the Pedal Force ones. For a medium frame with a 145mm head tube, the Gran Fondo has a listed 535mm effective top tube, compared to the Sportive's 550mm. This is however offset by the Gran Fondo's steeper seat angle, which at a degree steeper shortens the effective top tube by around 10mm. This means a similar position can be obtained by moving the saddle back, which will probably be neccessary anyhow to obtain the correct saddle to bb distance.

Choose this if...
You prefer the graphics and sweeping curves to the less curvy but lighter Sportive, or you want a Dedacciai frame.


New Sportive frame only price £510

It's unknown at this stage who makes the New Sportive frame. The frame and fork pricing is identical to the Stealth but it looks to be a different frame.

Choose this if...
You like suprises!


Stealth frame only price £510

This frame is a rebranded Pedal Force RS3

The frame weighs a claimed 980g (1110g according to Pedal Force). The forks have an carbon steerer tube and Ribble don't list a weight, but Pedal Force claim 369g.

This is one of the most advanced frames Ribble sell, with BB30, a tapered steerer tube and internal brake cable routing. It's stiffer and has racier geometry than the RS2 based Sportive frame but is slightly heavier as a result.

Choose this if...
You want a stiffer, racier frame, one with BB30.


Nero RC frame only price £520

This frame is a rebranded Dedacciai Nero RC

The frame weighs a claimed 1050g. The forks have an alloy steerer tube and weigh a claimed 585g.

The Nero RC is one of the older designs in the Ribble range and is showing its age compared to the New Sportive / Stealth and Grand Fondo frames, both of which feature better technology (tapered steerers, BB30 etc) at a lower price. The frame is of a racier geometry than the Gran Fondo and has a shorter head tube for a lower riding position.

Choose this if...
You want a racier position, or something better than the RS2 based frames but don't like the new RS3 ones, or you want a Dedacciai frame and don't like the Gran Fondo.
BMC Pro Machine | Ribble Gran Fondo | Planet-X SL Pro Carbon | Specialized Langster 2008 | Ribble Winter Sloping | Trek 8000 | Onza Blade 2009

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«134

Posts

  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    Looks like it will actually cause more confusion amongst buyers and lead to a dramatic increase in the number of 'What bike for £1000?' threads on here!

    Several very similar models there... :?
  • I'm liking the Bianco, another bike for the ever growing list of things i want. :D
  • The Stealth and the New Sportive appear to be the same frame - a rebranded Pedal Force RS3 which has some pretty nice specs - BB30, tapered forks etc. The Sportive Bianco is the same Pedal Force RS2 frame as the existing Sportive model, so will probably have the same carbon steerer forks. Forks for the Stealth and New Sportive are more expensive than the current ones, so hopefully carbon steerer as shown on the Pedal Force site, although Gran Fondo forks are the same price but alu steerer.

    Also the Evo Pro which we've seen plus the existing Sportive and Nero RC makes seven carbon bikes to choose from at under a grand!

    I'm really liking the Sportive Bianco and the Stealth.
    NapoleonD wrote:
    Looks like it will actually cause more confusion amongst buyers and lead to a dramatic increase in the number of 'What bike for £1000?' threads on here!

    Several very similar models there... :?

    I've edited my post and added info about each model. Hopefully this will help!

    I'll add the missing ones (Scuro & Ribelle) later. Just wanted to get the sub £1000 ones there first.
    BMC Pro Machine | Ribble Gran Fondo | Planet-X SL Pro Carbon | Specialized Langster 2008 | Ribble Winter Sloping | Trek 8000 | Onza Blade 2009

    My site » AssosFables :: Assos news & reviews
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,969
    You probably should include some stuff about the geometry! There are more important geometrical reasons why you might want, or not want, a Gran Fondo! Also Ribble also said to me the GF is stiffer than the smaller tubed Sportive.

    P.S Please, please no 'I'm really liking' - it's OK just to say 'I really like' :lol:
    P.P.S re verified frame weight for the GF. Is that the same size frame used for the other frames and is it for the Gran Fondo 2 or the original?
    Faster than a tent.......
  • well i had decided on the nero rc until seeing the stealth

    looks the biz :D
    "Never rub another man's rhubarb"
  • Rolf F wrote:
    P.S Please, please no 'I'm really liking' - it's OK just to say 'I really like' :lol:

    I'll second that
    Expertly coached by http://www.vitessecyclecoaching.co.uk/

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  • Rolf F wrote:

    P.P.S re verified frame weight for the GF. Is that the same size frame used for the other frames and is it for the Gran Fondo 2 or the original?

    The weight is for the GF2 in a Medium (51cm).
    BMC Pro Machine | Ribble Gran Fondo | Planet-X SL Pro Carbon | Specialized Langster 2008 | Ribble Winter Sloping | Trek 8000 | Onza Blade 2009

    My site » AssosFables :: Assos news & reviews
  • inseineinseine Posts: 5,763
    The stealth don't look at all like the same frame. See the seat clamp area.
  • rozzer32rozzer32 Posts: 3,408
    That stealth looks sweet 8)

    If only the scuro rs came like that :(
    ***** Pro Tour Pundit Champion 2020, 2018, 2017 & 2011 *****
  • FYI I have a Evo Pro Carbon Frame, and on the kitchen scales it was about 1080g.
  • Looks like a Pedalforce CG1
  • The Stealth that is
  • Looks like a Pedalforce CG1, The Stealth that is

    No, the Stealth is definitely an RS3, look at the very distinctive head tube. I thought at first it was the rear brake cable, but that goes to the other side.
    inseine wrote:
    The stealth don't look at all like the same frame. See the seat clamp area.

    Right you are. I've updated the post to say we don't know what frame it is yet.
    BMC Pro Machine | Ribble Gran Fondo | Planet-X SL Pro Carbon | Specialized Langster 2008 | Ribble Winter Sloping | Trek 8000 | Onza Blade 2009

    My site » AssosFables :: Assos news & reviews
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,969
    You really ought to cover the Gran Fondo geometry - assuming you want this to be a useful thread :lol:

    I've said it twice which should be enough!

    On second thoughts...... The Ribble Gran Fondo has a different geometry to most, if not all the other Ribble Carbon bikes. It has a taller head tube for a given virtual top tube size. This is implied in the description (The addition of a slightly taller head tube and improved tube shaping provides improved handling, additional comfort and increased torsional stiffness). But the same descripton is wrongly given to many of the other frames which doesn't help.

    Therefore, the reason to choose the GF has less to do with swoopy frame shapes, colour schemes and the manufacturer and more to do with whether or not you want a more upright frame geometry/less sporty riding position.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • I edited and added a bit about the Deda geometry just before my last post, forgot to mention it in my reply sorry.

    You're correct in that the GF has a taller head tube for the same size top tube of other frames, but you need to take into account the steeper seat angle which shortens the top tube. With the correct saddle to bb setback distance the 51cm GF is pretty much the same fit as the 52cm Sportive.

    I very nearly bought a Large GF but went for the medium. I've set it up the same as my medium PX (547mm VTT) with 81mm setback and it fits great.
    BMC Pro Machine | Ribble Gran Fondo | Planet-X SL Pro Carbon | Specialized Langster 2008 | Ribble Winter Sloping | Trek 8000 | Onza Blade 2009

    My site » AssosFables :: Assos news & reviews
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,969
    Elevated wrote:
    You're correct in that the GF has a taller head tube for the same size top tube of other frames, but you need to take into account the steeper seat angle which shortens the top tube. With the correct saddle to bb setback distance the 51cm GF is pretty much the same fit as the 52cm Sportive.

    I can see that might work but in my case the top tube would be impossibly long for me unless the saddle was teetering off the front of the seat post! That's to get a traditional racing fit rather than a sportive fit.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • ketsbaiaketsbaia Posts: 1,718
    Rolf F wrote:
    P.S Please, please no 'I'm really liking' - it's OK just to say 'I really like' :lol:

    I'm massively agreeing with this sentiment.

    :D
  • He's put together a good post here. I think we can forgive him the 'I'm really liking' pedantry.
  • ketsbaiaketsbaia Posts: 1,718
    I'm forgiving him.

    :D
  • My new Ribble Gran Fondo should be with me on Friday, it is being built today! Can't wait!
  • My new Ribble Gran Fondo should be with me on Friday, it is being built today! Can't wait!
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,969
    abrooks100 wrote:
    My new Ribble Gran Fondo should be with me on Friday, it is being built today! Can't wait!
    abrooks100 wrote:
    My new Ribble Gran Fondo should be with me on Friday, it is being built today! Can't wait!

    This is what happens when you don't wait long enough for the screen to refresh - you end up with two Gran Fondos :lol:
    Faster than a tent.......
  • Really like the look of the grand fondo actually, and am seriously thinking about getting one.

    I also want an sram red groupset though. I'm far from the greatest mechanic, how easy is it to install complete groupsets?
  • TMRTMR Posts: 3,986
    Really like the look of the grand fondo actually, and am seriously thinking about getting one.

    I also want an sram red groupset though. I'm far from the greatest mechanic, how easy is it to install complete groupsets?

    They'd probably do it for you if you ask. I know that Planet X were selling a carbon framed bike with full SRAM Red recently for £1099 or so. Given that SRAM Red costs around £1K on it's own, it'd be worth buying the bike, stripping the GS, then selling the frame and the rest on eBay. You'd be in pocket surely?
  • Wow that would certainly be worth it.

    Jeeze, how on earth can they sell that? It's basically a free bike with groupset?
  • TMRTMR Posts: 3,986
    edited September 2010
    Wow that would certainly be worth it.

    Jeeze, how on earth can they sell that? It's basically a free bike with groupset?

    According to their web site:
    Q. Why are you selling this at such a low price?

    Value is at the core of what we do, but it's try to say this offer is exceptional. The reason is simple, and a little embarrasing. We are massively over stocked of SRAM Red, thanks to a good old fashioned censored -up. And that VAT man is calling. Simple as that. This isn't going to happen again so grab yourself a bargain.
  • I've just installed a SRAM Red Groupset on my bike.

    It wasn't too difficult but you do really need:

    Torque Wrench that goes to ~50Nm and another one for 4-10Nm
    BB Tool or BB Socket for said wrench
    3, 4 & 5 Hex bits for lower wrench, 8mm for higher

    Luckily I managed to borrow a lot of this stuff so it wasn't too hard.

    The Planet-X bike isn't full SRAM Red for £1099, only the Shifters, F&R Mech are Red. The rest is a mix of Rival, PlanetX and FSA. Not saying that's necessarily bad, but just be aware :)
  • rozzer32rozzer32 Posts: 3,408
    November/December delivery for the stealth so I presume it will be the same for the other frames.

    I really do like the look of the stealth and it seems a really good spec for the price (BB30 & tapered headtube)
    ***** Pro Tour Pundit Champion 2020, 2018, 2017 & 2011 *****
  • I popped into the Ribble Warehouse today to look at the new range and was very impressed. The new Sportive Racing looks a hell of a lot better in the flesh. Its not the same frame as the Stealth (I think someone mentioned it was?). Unfortunately they didnt have a Stealth in the shop yet but the guy in the shop reckons its a very stiff and lightweight frame.

    I have finally made my mind up on my new frame and as soon as the Stealth is available I'll be putting down the cash.
  • rozzer32rozzer32 Posts: 3,408
    davelakers wrote:
    I popped into the Ribble Warehouse today to look at the new range and was very impressed. The new Sportive Racing looks a hell of a lot better in the flesh. Its not the same frame as the Stealth (I think someone mentioned it was?). Unfortunately they didnt have a Stealth in the shop yet but the guy in the shop reckons its a very stiff and lightweight frame.

    I have finally made my mind up on my new frame and as soon as the Stealth is available I'll be putting down the cash.

    That means there is going to be two stealths on the ribble valley club run then dave :lol:
    ***** Pro Tour Pundit Champion 2020, 2018, 2017 & 2011 *****
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