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Eyes On: Ellsworth’s Updated Enlightment 29er, Carbon Stays & Dare DH Bike

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Ellsworth’s Enlightenment 29er carbon hardtail gets more than just new graphics. They changed up the resins and molding process to make it stronger while dropping about 125 grams out.

They had the new Dare DH prototype and the new carbon shock stays on display, too…


The new matte carbon and white is (IMO) much better looking than the original glossy grunge-graphics-over-fishnet.

The inside tooling is now silicone, which lets them get really smooth with full 300psi compaction.


Internal cable routing is pretty interesting. It jumps out between the top tube and seat stays to ease installation. They’ll have plugs over the cable housing and hose at the entry and exit points for production.


The machined dropouts are done in house. It ships with geared dropouts, and single speed versions are available.

They’re in production now and should be available in about a month.


The new Dare will be lower and slacker, with many modern updates. The tapered headtube will accommodate Cane Creek’s AngleSet. This gives them a larger weld surface area, too, which is taken full advantage of with a new SST (shaped, schwaged tubes) downtube that has thicker tube walls at the head tube and gets thinner as it goes down. It’s also very shaped, as are the top- and seat tubes. The seat tube finally grows to 30.9, too.

This prototype will see tweaks to the head angle and BB height before getting into production in a couple months.


The new carbon seatstays for their full suspensions bikes save about 100g, quite a bit for just one piece on the frame. It’s available on the Epiphany, Moment, Evolve and Evolution. The latter two are their 29er full suspension bikes. Starts shipping in May.

As for 650B, Tony Ellsworth says their 29er has really great stand over for shorter riders.

“If you want the advantage of a larger wheel, go with a larger wheel,” Ellsworth said. “There’s no compromise with our 29ers.

“We could get a couple of our models to work with 650, and we may toy with it if the market really heads in that direction.”

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Mark Merideth
Mark Merideth
12 years ago

Not impressed. I’m suprised Ellsworth is still in business. They made a great product once, but they keep rehashing the same old thing. I had an Enlightenment and the rear stays broke after just a couple of rides and then it took months to get is exchanged for another one. I was told there was a defect in the mold (this was after the bike had been out for more than a year). I heard their “Rare Earth Carbon” is marketing b.s. They have their few carbon frames made by some generic factory in Taiwan. The graphics on this model are what other manufacturers where doing 3 or 4 years ago. The cheesy plastic stick-on headbadge is also lame on a carbon frame. Spend your money wisely and buy a Niner or a Specialized, Ellsworth is old and tired.

11 years ago

Ellsworth makes great bikes, On your next trip out to buy anything try to locate the made in america on the tag, you can’t there biked are quality high end bikes across the lines, i have one and i will buy another , I do want Tony to look at the trends 29ers where not well accepted then it was all the rage and the public wanted them, in the future all three wheel sizes will have applications, matching terrain, rider skill and size will allow you to fit a bike to your specific needs. Toni-Jump on this bandwagon

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