It may have the same name as its predecessor, but the 2017 Niner RIP 9 RDO Mountain Bike Frame went in for some serious upgrades before stepping into the limelight. Dropping with a slacker head tube, steeper seat tube, longer top tube, stubbier chainstays, and a deeper suspension, the new RIP 9 RDO bridges the gap between its trail heritage and enduro aspirations to settle firmly into all-mountain territory. And surprisingly, given Niner's historic dedication to the eponymous 29er, the frame now boasts compatibility with both 29in and 27. 5+ wheels so you can choose the size that best fits your riding style. In addition to the geometry tweaks, the new RIP 9 gains a heap of versatility with the introduction of Boost axle spacing. Boost spacing makes for stiffer wheels, which wagon wheels are uniquely qualified to benefit from, but it also opens up a world of options throughout the rear triangle. By pushing the rear axle out to 148mm, Niner was able to finagle enough clearance at the bottom bracket to shorten the chainstays by 11mm and sharpen the seat tube angle by two degrees. These subtle changes make the rear triangle that much more responsive to input while also pushing the bike's engine (read: you) up over the pedals. The stubby stays keep the bike agile, but the slack-ish head tube means the RIP 9 RDO also revels in attempts to flatten everything in its path--or at least bailing you out when your lines start to get a bit too ambitious. Depending on the fork and wheels you pair it with, the Rip 9's front end can hit as low as 66. 5 degrees. Its longer top tube pairs well with a short stem and wide bar to keep handling on-point, despite that low head tube angle, so you can always fall back on those short stays to navigate stretches of especially technical terrain. There's obviously oodles of new radness with the RIP 9 RDO, but two things remain pleasantly unchanged: The Race Day Optimized (RDO) construction method and the Constantly Varying Arc (CVA) suspens...
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