Strengths: I was skeptical to ride with a carbon mountain because on the pavement it sounded hollow and weak and made a dong sound. But when you're on the trails all that scary noise does not exist. And boy this bike it FAST. Frame is really stiff for carbon.
It shifts very crisp and on the dot. Whatever gear you want it in, it will get there in a snap climbing up, coming down, on flats, whatever it is. Another thing I will complement is the soft feel from the carbon frame combined with the excellent fork that allows many adjustments.
The crank bro. smarty pedals are decent. I had a lil trouble clipping in, but that's because I may need to put some shims under the cleats. Other than that, they let me go in a snap and let really put the power to the ground. Also, wearing a pear of lycra shorts, the seat provided great comfort. My behind never went numb for a second.
The brakes (Avid Ultimates) are a little above average. They are a little soft when you first pull but when you pull the bike stops! I think the soft feel is good. It allows for some play unlike some other brakes I've experienced where a tap will send you over the bars. But I would like just a tad bit harder feel to them.
The XT crankset was smooth & quiet and fast. I never use the big ring on my previous mtn bike on the trails, but this bike was so light and fast I actually had too. And I didn't mean I was riding on it for a second or two. I was probably on the big ring for a good few minutes on some doubletrack. The lightweight definately allowed me to do this. I don't know if an XC bike could ever be too light, but it feels to me whatever weight this bike is, it is a good balance, not so lightweight I feel I dont' have control and not heavy enough for me to complain.
However, between the front and the rear of the bike. The front seems heavier and I wish there was a better balance between the front and rear. Maybe a lighter fork? They design cars with nearly 50/50 weight for performance. You would think they would do the same for bikes right?
The only thing I will complain about it the flat bar and the grips. I'm used to riding risers. After about an hour my hands felt some numbing and I noticed my hands just weren't in the most natural position because of the flat bar. Another consequence is the fast steering from being right over the front like that with a flat bar. Not used to that either, but I will get around to it.
Wheelset is rather light and the skewers are awesome and will never loosen up. It's very easy to use. I don't know why other reviewer said it was hard to understand. I also read it is tubless ready... hmmm... I never read that anywhere else. I will have to find out if that is true and try it. If it is then OMG I am even more in love with this bike!
Weaknesses: Grips, a creak I can't figure out coming from headset area, brakes a little soft when begin pulling, aluminum seat post. Fast trak tirees are weak sauce unless if really dry and semi packed. With a retail of $3000, it shoulda came with carbon post and a phenom seat i think.
Overall, the bike is very agile, climbs like hell, and is FAST FAST FAST! BANG FOR THE BUCK!
Bike Setup: Stock (sram xo rd, lx fd, xt crankset, juicy ultimates, dt swiss rims, etc.) Now with Specialized Captain Tires and ergons. Ergons makes a world difference. Either get ergons or some nice fat grips.
a Cross Country Rider
from Lincoln, NE
Date Reviewed: July 1, 2008
Strengths: The stock specs seem to suit the meaning of the bike. Stumpjumper geometry. Light (24 lbs) stock and can be made much lighter. Tubeless ready. Fox shocks are the best and this one is designed to match the bike. Looks stealth and dangerous.
Weaknesses: The finish seems to chip off easily for a hard-charging XC bike. Stock seat sucks and was replaced immediately. Not sure yet about the DT swiss wheels and racheting skewers.
I waited until I got to do all types of rides before posting this. The first thing I will say is that the bike fits me great (6' and on a 19"). I feel at home on the bike and have not been disappointed. I really like the shock Fox made to match the bike (Fox 90RL). It is light, feels great on THIS bike and is nicely adjustable. Off-road can be rough, being hardtail, and the bike is light enough that the back end can skip out and/or lose traction. I've always raced on hardtails, but this back end is so stif and light. The front end is always right on track though. I like the way the bike climbs. This may be the first bike I've had that doesn't hold me back when it's time to climb, especially on the trail. You just have to be careful to keep some weight on the back tire. The stock tires are a low knob design though, and not really very grippy, which I'm sure has led to some of my traction issues. I will be putting a grippier trail tire on the back as soon as this one wears. I'm going 4 chili's instead of 5 because although I love the bike, It's not quite as wonderful as my Specialized S-works Roubaix road bike experience in 2007. That experience is what inspired me to purchase this hardtail.
Similar Products Used: Mostly steel of aluminum hardtails.
Bike Setup: Stock with the exception of a Specialized Phenom saddle, Specialized bar ends and added tire liners (flatted the first two rides from miniscule thorns).
from Santa Cruz, CA
Date Reviewed: May 22, 2008
Strengths: Components, stiffness, the weight isn't incredible but still good, tubeless.
Weaknesses: Somehow, the rear triangle has become waterlogged and I can't get it out.
This bike has a superb mix of XC racing parts and stronger, more durable parts, and they all work excellently. After a year of riding, the gorgeous frame now has numerous scratches, and the rims aren't quite as dark black as they used to be, but those are all aesthetic complaints. It is a great racer. the frame geometry couldn't possibly get any better. It climbs great, really great, and on the flats and downhill. I appreciate the extra rotational mass that my wheels have. The wheels aren't exactly XC wheels. They are Mavic XM 819 Tubeless rims laced to a custom DT Swiss hub and a Specialized hum with DT Swiss SuperComp triple butted spokes. That wheel setup is an All-Mountain setup. However, all that extra rotational mass means that once I get going, momentum will help me to keep going. Of course, this means that braking, acceleration and climbing suffer, but I make up for it by being in excellent physical condition. But still, this bike tears it up on any XC course. You will not be disappointed with it. Also, the carbon frame helps to dampen vibration a little bit. The person looking to get this bike should be a serious XC racer. I have a few problems though, but they are minor. First, the cartridge bearings on the front hubs broke. the only way to fix them is to get new bearings. People with a Specialized front hub: if the front end of your bike is making a lot of noise, and its not the headset, check the hub! I found out that mine was so loose that I could tighten it with my fingers. To tighten the hub, just use a wrench on the little nubs close to where the quick release mechanism is. You can't open it up and tighten it normally because it has sealed cartridge bearings. If that doesn't fix it, then take it to your Specialized dealer and get new bearings. My second problem is that my frame somehow got waterlogged, and the water wont come out. Frankly, i don't know what to do about it, but it does't seem to be doing anything. Overall, a great bike. I'm glad I got it, and any XC racer will be happy that they got this bike too.
Bike Setup: This review is for a '07 StumpJumper Marathon Carbon(thats a mouthful) Thats what she said :) I have changed the tires to tubeless Kenda Nevegals, and I replaced the chain and cassette after a years use with the same parts.
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: March 22, 2008
Strengths: This bike offers the ultimate ride. The x-o shifters and derailleur are amazing. If your looking for a bike that climbs hills with ease then this is the bike for you. The fox fork is also a dream it is super plush.
Weaknesses: The frame is a little stiff, the quick release on the wheel set is hard to understand
The best bike in the world it is light and the ultimate race bike.
I know this is a Cannondale forum so the response should be overwhelmingly in favor of the Flash but I just wanted to hear from Cannondale owners what makes the Flash so much better (or not) compared to the Spesh.
I'm doing entry level (Cat2-3) marathon racing starting next March. I currently ha ... Read More »
Just ordered one from my bike shop, anyone here have one and what's your take, do you like it (I've never ridden one before or seen one). What's the weight for your bike with or without mods. Also inread a common issue with this bike is the seat post where it connects top tube cracking easily and S ... Read More »
Just picked my new ride up today, can't wait to get it dirty tomorrow. I rode one of these at a test day about 3 months ago, and it left a lasting impression. The finish on the frame is absolutely stunning, I know a lot of people don't like the look of Spesh bikes, but I think this thing is sexy as ... Read More »
So I stopped at the shop late morning today to drop off my trusty ol' 2004 Stumpjumper FSR, sold on eBay, and I want the bike shop to get it boxed up for shipment.
Well, my new 2013 Stumpjumper FSR had finally came in!! They had just taken it out of it's box to start assembling, and it was still ... Read More »
Thanks for checking it out. Hope it finds a good home.
[url=http://classifieds.mtbr.com/showproduct.php?product=81046]2013 Specialized Stumpjumper Expert Evo Carbon - Buy and Sell and Review Mountain Bikes and Accessories[/url]Read More »