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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

I am new to mountain biking. I currently have a Motobecane 400 ht and I am wanting to upgrade to a better bike. I was wanting to go to a 29er with 2X10 gearing and get away from the cheaper coil forks. I have a specialized dealer close to me that has a Rockhopper Comp and a Crave 29er. I was pressed for time while I was there and did not get to ride either but I did sit on the Crave and liked it from what I could tell. I have a Trek dealer about 60 miles away that I visited yesterday. They did not have much available but did have a 2013 Stache 7. I rode it and it felt ok. The handlebars felt a little wide but something I could get used to. The Stache was 1599 with a 10% discount for being last years model. From reading on this forum I was expecting a larger discount for a year old model. I am planning on going to my local shop and seeing what their two models feel like. I know that the Crave and Stache are aimed at different crowds. The trails that I ride do have quite a few rocks and roots but no jumps or anything like that. I do not plan on racing this is just for the fun of riding on the trails. I would think that the Stache lines up more with what I will be riding but I wouldn't think that it was be too hard on the Crave. Any advise.
 

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35% off is the max off on last years bikes at bigger platinum level Trek dealers. Yours sounds small if they don't have much stock at this time of year when the biggest number of sales take place. Marked price is only a starting point.
You can get 15% off 2014s with negotiation on current models ordered with regular stock or on the floor. Don't ask for a special order. Tell them you don't want one. Figure out your price including tax in advance and talk to a manger. That is where you need to be to do the deal. Cash can take another 3% off. The best buy is the Superfly 9.6 carbon. Should be close to 2k out the door. Tell them you need a Trek Fest deal(was April 14th) The compliance of the frame is all new and exceptional. The geo is new with 435mm chainstays, the steering is quick. The aluminum Superfly has the same geo but not as much compliance. Lifetime on the carbon.



I would ride a 9.6 on anything a Fuel Ex would ride. Plus you get trail feel a fs lacks, way more fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I will be going to the Specialized dealer tomorrow to test ride the Crave and Rockhopper Comp. Should the Rockhopper Pro Evo feel about the same as the Comp? I saw that the measurements were slightly different.

The most I was wanting to spend was 1400. The Crave and RH Pro are both at that price point. Any comparisons of those two? I am primarily just riding trails so I don't know if the RH would be a better bike for that purpose.
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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I will be going to the Specialized dealer tomorrow to test ride the Crave and Rockhopper Comp. Should the Rockhopper Pro Evo feel about the same as the Comp? I saw that the measurements were slightly different.

The most I was wanting to spend was 1400. The Crave and RH Pro are both at that price point. Any comparisons of those two? I am primarily just riding trails so I don't know if the RH would be a better bike for that purpose.
Specialized's "Evo" models tend to incorporate popular modifications that people make to those bikes. The Rockhopper has pretty traditional XC geometry and usually ships with a 100 mm fork. The big differences, to me, in the Evo are that they spec it with a longer-travel fork and add a bash guard. I'm too lazy to do a really exhaustive comparison, but I doubt the frame itself is any different. Sticking a longer-travel fork on the front gives it a slacker head angle, though. So it should be a little more stable on the way down, but maybe a little harder to keep on a line on the way up. Actually, it's only as slack as my shiny new Kona Hei Hei, which is a pretty straightforward race bike; I think going a little slacker has been good, including for racing. By contrast, the Stache is a lot more slack than either.

The Crave is pretty much just a more expensive Rockhopper. I think Specialized is a gang of idiots for coming up with it, actually. Also for changing the name from "Carve" to "Crave." I can't read it without thinking it's a swypo, and the Rockhopper has great name recognition.

Comparing specs in depth bores me, but from a quick look, the base-model Crave and the RH Evo are pretty similar. Same fork, even, just a longer-travel model on the RH Evo. The Crave is probably the next frame up.

From your first post, it sounds like you're riding actual mountain bike trails.

So really, whatever bike you think will be the most fun.

The Stache, Rockhopper and Crave will be about equal on durability. So again - it's really all about the attitude you want from the bike.

Can you try them on trails? If not, at least try to get rad around the shops. Look for how easy it is to "float" the front wheel, what happens when you hit the compression at the bottom of a steep downslope, and how it is to climb something with a steep pitch. Ride up and down some curbs and stairsets.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I am not able to test ride on trails, just in the parking lot area. I had a chance to go the shop last week but decided to go to a trail I had never been on instead. I did go later in the week but it was pouring the rain and I didn't get to ride outside. I did like the feel of the Crave from what you can tell from riding in a 12 foot straight line. I will try and ride it sometime this week if the rain lets up. I will probable go with the Crave since they have one in the shop, but I did talk with another shop that is about 2 hours away that has a 2013 Carve Comp for about $40 more. It does have a Recon Gold fork instead of the XC32, not sure if that is a big difference or not. And it has Avid brakes instead of Tektro. If I did that I would also not gain the LBS support that I would get from buying it there.
 

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Specialized's "Evo" models tend to incorporate popular modifications that people make to those bikes. The Rockhopper has pretty traditional XC geometry and usually ships with a 100 mm fork. The big differences, to me, in the Evo are that they spec it with a longer-travel fork and add a bash guard.
Bingo. The only other difference I can think of is the Evo has a 15mm thru axle up front. I also think the Crave line is a bit silly. Seems like they only created it to offer a bike in the price gap between the Rockhopper and Stumpjumper lines. They would have been better off creating more Rockhopper and Stumpjumper models due to name recognition.
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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If I was choosing between the XC32 and the Recon Gold, my big question would be whether the spring and damper cartridges for the Recon and up can drop into the XC32. Also, if the XC32's damper is generally well-regarded or if people have been breaking them.

The Recon Gold's going to be lighter, but I doubt it's the 2 lb difference that going from some of the Suntour forks to a "real" fork can be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I got to ride the Crave today and I really liked how it felt. I have decided to stay with the local shop and now I am just trying to decide if I want to buy the Crave 29 or have them order the Crave Comp. Not sure if it is worth an extra $190 or not. The differences I see are going from the XC32 fork to the Recon Gold, a Shimano Deore Shadow Plus to Shimano SLX rear derailleur and going from Tektro Gemini brakes to Shimano Deore BR-445 brakes. The brakes on the lower Crave felt kind of soft to me so that has me thinking about ordering the Comp.

Thanks for all the advice so far. Do you guys think it is worth an extra 200 or so for the upgrades?
 

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If you were to buy those upgrades later on they would definitely cost more than $190. The Tektro brakes aren't anything to write home about, so I feel like the Deore brakes alone are enough of a reason to spend the extra cash if you have it.
 
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