I've made some good progress on making my 2022 Scott Spark 910 into what I'm calling a Spark Evo. Kazimer's Pinkbike review made some good points about the bike and got me thinking how I could push it a bit more into to the “downcountry” spectrum.
My first couple of rides on the Spark were a bit underwhelming. It was a bit sluggish and soft. Not what I was expecting from a bike which is 90% of a World Cup XC winner. It wasn't awful, but I expected a bit more pep from it.
My first upgrade was the bars. I’m used to 780mm from my old bike and run that width on my Pyga Hyrax as well. That done, the bike felt a lot more like home and I started to feel like I could get a bit more aggressive on trail with it.
Next on the list was a set of wheels. The stock Syncros wheels and Formula hubs were heavy (2100 grams) and had tragic hub engagement (20 degrees odd). Both issues were remedied with a set of Lyne Amp carbon wheels. They knocked 400 grams off the weight of the wheels and the 2.5 degree hub engagement is much more to my liking. I also added a CSixx tyre insert in the rear for a bit of insurance with a small 100 gram weight penalty. I also swapped out the Shimano brake rotors for some SRAM Centreline rotors, which seem to pair well with the stock sintered pads and give a lot more bite and stopping power. With the wheels done, the bike suddenly had that snap under power I was looking for.
Stock, the bike has a 125mm Fox Transfer, which was not enough drop IMO. I moved it on and fitted a OneUp 150mm dropper. The OneUp was the only post short enough to allow me to get my correct saddle height as the frame has a stopper to prevent more than 175mm of insertion. One of the downsides of the shock integration.
Then came the big change. The Twinlock was removed! I’ve got a few reasons for removing it, but honestly, the ergonomics of the latest effort from Scott are tragic. I could never get it setup that I could activate the modes without moving my hand on the bar. I’d also find myself activating the suspension lock when I was going for the dropper. Sorry Scott, not good enough. I was a little worried, the bike would be a bobbing mess at the rear without the Twinlock, but this is not the case. I set the shock up with 22% sag and it felt very supportive whilst climbing and did not give me the impression of being the slightest bit lazy. I also set a few PRs on a local trail I’ve ridden many, many times both climbing and descending.
So far I am very happy with my Spark Evo. Next up I’d like to get hold of a Grip2 damper for the fork and I’ll probably call it job done!
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