The Jibb from Curtis from Stuttgart (Germany) makes no secret of the fact that it is a real workhorse: the combination of the "raw" finish of the frame and the (almost) entirely black attachments almost screams "Do-it-All-Bike". Why Curtis switched from the Madonna to the Jibb and what a wrinkled extraterrestrial has to do with it all, you will find out in this edition of the RAAW of the Month series.
Curtis, whose real name is Daniel ("I'd be happy to tell the story over a beer sometime"), was born in 1976 and grew up in Munich. He now lives in Stuttgart, but spends almost as much time in Innsbruck.
Postcard from Innsbruck
"Like almost everyone who saw E.T. in the early 80s, I was fascinated by BMX biking, and that's probably where my enthusiasm for using bikes not just as a means of transportation comes from. Even though I never got really good at it, I at least learned the first bunny hops as a child on a BMX. That's how I got into mountain biking. Later there was a time when other interests and sports took priority, but the memory of the fun on the bike probably never completely disappeared. In the early 2000s, I therefore built up a mountain bike again and, especially after moving to Stuttgart and due to the growing bike scene there, the fascination has remained."
Ready to be build
Before building his Jibb as a “quarantine project” in early 2021, Curtis had been using the Madonna V1 for some time. "Although the Madonna V1 really excited me - both downhill and uphill - it was a bit too much for the trails I ride most and love the most: Stuttgart home trails and alpine, technical trails in the area of my third home Innsbruck and the Alps in general," he describes the reasons for switching models. "Also, my focus is not necessarily on speed, but rather on playfulness and agility in technical sections and trial biking. In my opinion, the strengths of the Madonna are mainly in tiling the trail in race mode on the most direct possible line. When the Jibb was introduced, the decision was quickly clear: "For me, the Jibb combines everything I loved about the Madonna (kinematics, conscious decision for aluminium as frame material, focus on robustness, clean design) with a frame platform that better fits my riding style and application."
The result is quite impressive
Curtis is 180 cm tall and rides the frame in size L: "Since I really have very short legs (inseam only 79 cm at a height of about 180 cm), I would very much appreciate the size M seat tube to have the largest possible adjustment range for the seat post. After a test ride in Finale Ligure, however, the size L frame appealed to me much more. It is the same size I also rode on the Madonna."
"My Jibb should simply be a reliable workhorse without any major frills. That's why I focused less on weight and more on reliability and maintainability when building it, and basically took all the matching parts from my Madonna. To me, the raw finish of the frame with black hardware and decals screams for a build with black parts. Nevertheless, I wanted to set a small color accent, so the shift cable became neon yellow. I didn't want to make any experiments, so all the parts like rims, hubs, drivetrain, stem, etc. are tried and tested and not particularly extravagant. Following the philosophy of the frame, "aluminum instead of carbon", there is currently no carbon on the bike except for a few spacers," Curtis reports.
He uses RockShox for the suspension: the fork is a Lyrik Ultimate RC2 with 160 mm of travel, and the Super Deluxe Ultimate shock works in the rear. "I am very satisfied with the performance and compared to the Fox suspension that I previously rode on the Madonna, I prefer the simpler maintenance," he says.
The wheels consist of a classic combination of DT Swiss EX511 rims with DT Swiss Competition spokes on Hope Pro 4 hubs. The e*thirteen tires shown in the photos have been replaced with Maxxis Aggressor: "The e*thirteen tires didn't impress me in terms of wear, so I switched to Maxxis, although availability didn't allow for all the planned options. Although not my first choice, the Aggressor on the rear wheel has been really a positive surprise so far," he says.
The drivetrain is from SRAM, using the GX Eagle group. For the steep climbs, Curtis swears by an oval chainring from Absolute Black (32T), and a 77designz Oval Guide chain guide with Taco prevents the chain from jumping off even in the roughest terrain.
Shimano Saint Brakes with 203mm discs
77 Designs stem with Joystick Builder-Bar, Topcap “Stuttgarter Bärte”
Complete Spec List
|Frame||Jibb, raw, Size L|
|Fork||RockShox Lyrik Ultimate RC2 160 mm|
|Rear Shock||RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate|
|Wheels||DTSwiss EX511 rims, DTSwiss Competition spokes, Hope Pro4 hubs|
|Tires||front: Maxxis Assegai 2.4 maxxGrip EXO+, rear: Maxxis Aggressor 2.5 DD|
|Discs||Shimano RT-76 203 mm / 203 mm|
|Derailleur||SRAM GX Eagle|
|Shifter||SRAM GX Eagle|
|Cranks||SRAM GX Eagle|
|Cassette||RAM GX Eagle 10-52T|
|Chain||SRAM XX1 Eagle|
|Chainguide||77designz Oval Guide|
|Pedals||HT Components PA03A|
|Seatpost||OneUp V2 180 mm|
|Storage||Wolf Tooth B-RAD|
|Weight||16,7 kg all-inclusive (bottlecage, Storage w. tool, spare tube, Co2-cartridge, MudGuard)|
And how does the Jibb compare to the Madonna, Curtis? "The Madonna seemed to want to be ridden through obstacles, with the Jibb you rather do bunny hops over them. The slightly shorter wheelbase and the significantly higher bottom bracket (less travel, less sag) are very helpful to me when transferring into tight turns and in technical (uphill) passages. Even if the spec sheet says only 135 mm of travel, the rear suspension is super potent. And more than sufficient for my riding skills to use the bike for occasional trips to bike parks or shuttle days, for example in Finale Ligure. Long story short, the Jibb is simply closer to the "one bike for everything" for me than the Madonna."
For us, Curtis' Jibb is the prototype of a do-it-all-bike. We can't quite say whether it's the various decals, the minimalist raw/black look, or simply the accompanying photos, but this RAAW of the month just looks like it can handle everything you throw at it.
Subtle individualizations such as the iconic Stuttgart TV tower or the laser-etched Ahead cap make Curtis' Jibb a one-of-a-kind.
3 questions for Curtis
How many kilometers and meters of altitude have you ridden with your Jibb
The past few months, biking has come up a bit short. I don't track rounds that are supported by shuttles or lifts. The rest is about 1300 km and 30000 meters of altitude with the Jibb. But that probably doesn't even remotely reflect the "total performance."
Are there any special experiences or challenges you have mastered with your
bike? Is there something you are particularly proud of?
I am currently almost 47 years old and a general highlight is that I feel like I am still getting better on the bike. For example, when it comes to jumping, where I really have a lot of room for improvement...
What does your typical local ride look like?
A typical home loop in Stuttgart takes me, depending on the available time, over three to seven trails with 20 - 30 km and 400 - 800 meters of altitude. An evening loop in Innsbruck usually consists of only one trail, so fewer kilometers and about 300 - 600 meters of altitude. No matter where, the most important thing is stress-free uphill.
Does your bike have what it takes to be "RAAW of the Month"?
Since we founded RAAW, one thing has given us a lot of pleasure: seeing where, how and by whom our bikes are ridden all over the world and how you use our frame kits to create different, individually optimized works of bike art. That's why from now on, every month we'll choose a particularly successful and exciting bike build from the community as "RAAW of the Month" and present the bike and its rider in detail on our website. In addition to glory and Insta-fame, a 100 € voucher for our online store awaits the lucky winner. Does your bike have what it takes to be "RAAW of the Month"? Check out this page to find out how to apply.