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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm wondering if anyone can comment on the differences between these two model year's. Has Anyone ridden them both and able to offer a riding comparo?

I know that the 04 has the seat tube that splits around the shock, but what does that accomplish. Lighter, stiffer, stronger??? Any change in geometry? Is there a difference in weight?

How much more would you pay for the '04 frame than the '02?

Cheers,
 

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The seat tube is split because the 04 needs a longer shock travel to make the pro-pedal work properly. Specialized must have thought that the extra length would make the seat mast vulnerable so they went to this design. That said, the rear of the 04 design is MUCH stiffer, tons and tons. The linkage is larger and beefier. The seat tube is steeper on the 04, I'm sure the frame is lighter too. I wouldn't buy an 02 frame at all, because the back end feels so sloppy. IMHO.
 

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My two cents...as the owner of an 02 Stumpjumper FXR-XC, I must say that the rear has never felt "sloppy" to me and I ride in the rocky and rooty northeast. I will say the suspension is "active" though and that I am totally satisfied with this bike.

With that said, I would have to agree that the 04 bike will be a better bike due to the technological improvements Specialized has made.

If you can afford it, I would recommend the 04 frame. But if you can't, go with the 02 frame. Either way, you're going to be happy.
 

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One big improvement (I hope) is in the way they attach the shock to the link on the '04's. I've changed the shock eye bushings and reducers three times on my '01 FSR XC Pro. It's not a costly item...my LBS charges me less than $25, parts and labor, to do it. I've also had to replace a bent bolt and the link (due to stripped threads).

I think the bushings/bolts should last a bit longer than they do. After looking at several '04's, I think they've improved the design. I guess time will tell...
 

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FWIW, I have a 99 FSR XC S-Works with a BETD seat stay and a Risse Racing link to give me 100mm of rear travel, and added a Psylo SL in the front for that 80-125mm travel. I haven't tried a 2004 Stumpy FSR, but the one I got works great for me. It has a US made frame and feels great all around. Basically, I don't think I'd be able to see or appreciate the difference with a new $4k bike, especially since the geometry has remained roughly the same over the years. If anything, try an old and a new one, and see for yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
zorg said:
FWIW, I have a 99 FSR XC S-Works with a BETD seat stay and a Risse Racing link to give me 100mm of rear travel,.
Thanks everyone for the input. We are talking at least >$1000 for the new one so I'm inclinded to go with an older one. I'm light, 155-165lbs depending on amount of running/riding.

One question zorg, Where do you buy the BETD seat stay and Risse Racing link? How much did it cost ya?

Anyone else ridden the bikes?

Cheers,

Doug
 

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I got the BETD seatstay directly from BETD and it was $330 or so with the bearings. However, I don't think you need it on a 2002 since the 2002 is disc capable (I believe, you should check). That was my main reason to get a BETD seatstay (well, it looks cool and it's beefier too).

For the link, you can either order one from www.risseracing.com for $130 or one from http://www.betd.co.uk/ ($160 or so). The BETD has multiple travel settings and seems a bit better, although I haven't tried one. However, I can vouch for their great customer service (via e-mail), and their quick turnaround. I got my seatstay within a week of ordering it.
 

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For the '01-'03 FSR XC, BETD are the only folks who offer a link that fits. The Risse is for pre-'01 bikes.
 

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I've owned an 04 and 03 but then moved to a s-works epic 04
The 04 stumpy has propedal, so it's instantly has better suspension and more options.

02: Didn't like the 02 front deraileur setup having it mounted on the bottom bracket. I found it squeaky and harder to keep dialed (though it was an LX). But I had to pull and clean it often. Chain suck was marginal on the 02, I found it horrific on the 03, even had to switch to another bike on a muddy 6 hour race. From the looks of the 04 design, this shouldn't be a problem. Don't get me wrong, I had a blast on the 02 and it made me a better rider, but I'd say the 04 is hands down the better way to go.
 

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Hanzo90802 said:
I too was thinking of getting a 01-03 Stumpy because the 04 stumpy I just saw at Superslo weighed in at just under 29 lbs which is about 4-5 pounds heavier then the 01-03s. Could this be true?
No, it is probably true, however, your weight numbers for the earlier models are WAY off. My stock 03 stumpjumper fsr weighed 31 lbs. The 04 SJ Comp FSR that I bought my fiance weighs in right at 27 lbs stock. That's with no lightening techniques applied. I could drop a couple pounds off that very easily. None of the base model stumpjumper fsrs were ever that light. The hardtails are considerably lighter but I assume you're talking about FSRs.
 

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Hanzo90802 said:
I too was thinking of getting a 01-03 Stumpy because the 04 stumpy I just saw at Superslo weighed in at just under 29 lbs which is about 4-5 pounds heavier then the 01-03s. Could this be true?
What models are you looking at????
4-5 lbs heavier is huge. The frame "may" be a tad heavier because there's more frame material on the seat tube, but 4-5lbs more? No way. That's gotta be component choices.
 

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mward said:
No, it is probably true, however, your weight numbers for the earlier models are WAY off. My stock 03 stumpjumper fsr weighed 31 lbs. The 04 SJ Comp FSR that I bought my fiance weighs in right at 27 lbs stock. That's with no lightening techniques applied. I could drop a couple pounds off that very easily. None of the base model stumpjumper fsrs were ever that light. The hardtails are considerably lighter but I assume you're talking about FSRs.
I called specialized and they confirmed that the older SJ are considerably lighter because of the rear end. He said the 04s with the split seat tube is stronger and consequently heavier. When I told him my experience at Supergo and the 4 lbs, he said its "at least 4 lbs. heavier."

Now I'm really confused.

Mward with your 03 did you have problems with chainsuck and hitting your pedals on rocks from the low BB? I did notice that the 03 stop using the type e front derailleur and figured that would of stopped the chainsuck problems???
 

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Nev said:
What models are you looking at????
4-5 lbs heavier is huge. The frame "may" be a tad heavier because there's more frame material on the seat tube, but 4-5lbs more? No way. That's gotta be component choices.
I was looking at the 01-03 FSRxc and the pro. Im going to call Specialized again and hopefully find someone who knows what theyre talking about. I already have a heavy freeride bike(SC Bullit). I want a fs xc bike to ride/race.
 

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There is NO way that a '04 SJ FSR is 4 pounds heavier than a '01-03 FSR XC when they are equipped with similar components. My '01 Pro is only 27 pounds and I've added at least two of those by installing parts like a 100mm fork, 545 pedals and much heavier tires.

As far as chain suck goes, it's never been a problem on my '01.
 

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I didn't notice a lot of chainsuck. I smack pedals a lot on any bike I ride. I don't seem to do the flying dismount that most people do in a pedalsmack so it doesn't bother me. I did notice that the back end on the 03 seemed very 'loose' because the linkages are less substantial than the 04 bikes. Some of the customer service people at specialized are morons, trust me, I've talked to most of them. Some of them are barely mountain bikers. The 04s are, if anything, lighter than the 03s. Even if the bike you buy is 29 lbs stock, you can get rid of 3 of that almost immediately by replacing saddle, seatpost, handlebars and tires. Also if they're still doing the disk wheelset without disk brakes, you can replace that with a non-disk wheelset and save even more weight. Don't sweat it. The solidity of the rear end, tighter handling, and better shock of the 04 makes it so much better I wouldn't consider an 03 or previous at all. Buy the comp if you can swing the price, it's lighter and has better stuff on it.
 
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