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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Went in to the local LBS today - they're having a big spring sale on lots of 2014 models - and came across the Specialized Camber 29er, base model. I'm new to the sport and my budget is capped at about $1800 +/- a small amount and so after riding this and the Trek Fuel EX5 I put a deposit down on the Camber, mostly because the two felt pretty similar to me and the Camber was less $.

BUT, coming home and reading up on it, the 2014 Camber is getting not-so-hot reviews b/c of its fork. Is it really that bad? I'm not familiar with the tech yet (still learning!). Should I deal with it and save up for a better fork or scrap the purchase entirely and get my deposit back?

I suppose I'm asking for opinions on those who have ridden the base model Camber and whether or not the spec is worth the $

Thanks!

Specialized Bicycle Components
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes but what makes is so "offensive"? Is it just a low-quality fork (i.e. will I end up replacing it after the first few dozen miles?).

Remember, I don't know helluva lot about what I'm riding on yet...I just don't have the experience to make any kind of comparison.

How does the rest of the part spec stand up, fork aside?
 

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First question: what did you think of the fork (and the rest of the bike)? I'm assuming you've had some time on the bike, as you threw down a deposit. If it felt fine to you, then you should be fine, especially as you learn the ropes of the sport. If you didn't like the feel of the fork:

A)Ask the shop how much it would be for them to trade out the fork and get a nicer, lower end RockShox or such installed using all of your budgeted money.

BRide it as, and enjoy the heck out of it. Unless you're made of $, there will almost always be a nicer model above the one you're buying. Yes, it might be cheaper to save up and buy that higher end model, but you're also missing out on days of riding a new bike. Thats worth something to me.

Finally, with out looking at other models at that price point at your LBS... most bikes at that price range are going to have similar specs, so looking else where might not help too much--there's always compromises in builds, unless you're spending mega bucks (and even then...) The next step up to the Camber Comp is a quite a step up (I think over 500 more, just looking at MSRP) over your budget.

If it were me, I'd probably buy the Camber, put the money I saved into getting some quality accessories (shoes/pedals, shorts come to mind) and put the rest money into a savings account for future bike trips or stuff. Ride the Camber until the wheels fall off, and by that time, you'll have a better idea of the kind of mtber you are, and use your new found skills and knowledge to pick out your next bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
First question: what did you think of the fork (and the rest of the bike)? I'm assuming you've had some time on the bike, as you threw down a deposit. If it felt fine to you, then you should be fine, especially as you learn the ropes of the sport. If you didn't like the feel of the fork:

A)Ask the shop how much it would be for them to trade out the fork and get a nicer, lower end RockShox or such installed using all of your budgeted money.

BRide it as, and enjoy the heck out of it. Unless you're made of $, there will almost always be a nicer model above the one you're buying. Yes, it might be cheaper to save up and buy that higher end model, but you're also missing out on days of riding a new bike. Thats worth something to me.

Finally, with out looking at other models at that price point at your LBS... most bikes at that price range are going to have similar specs, so looking else where might not help too much--there's always compromises in builds, unless you're spending mega bucks (and even then...) The next step up to the Camber Comp is a quite a step up (I think over 500 more, just looking at MSRP) over your budget.

If it were me, I'd probably buy the Camber, put the money I saved into getting some quality accessories (shoes/pedals, shorts come to mind) and put the rest money into a savings account for future bike trips or stuff. Ride the Camber until the wheels fall off, and by that time, you'll have a better idea of the kind of mtber you are, and use your new found skills and knowledge to pick out your next bike.
Thanks padre - you're advice really helped. I'm gonna stick w/ the Camber base. I've been hemming and hawing about it for the past day or two and even though the Comp has a nicer spec, I just can't justify dropping the extra $600 or so for something that I'm not sure I'd even be able to tell the difference between the two rides, outside of the drivetrain, maybe.

I did have a question about fork upgrades, as this seems to be the main downside to the base model Camber. Plan is to ride this thing hard for the spring and summer and upgrade the fork next year or in the fall - any recommendations for a decent fork under $200? I've been reading up on the RockShox Tora and Suntour Epicon - I think these would fit in my budget and be a decent upgrade to the Suntour XCR that's currently on the Camber. I'm guessing next would be brakes, then drivetrain...


My goal is to have this bike last me awhile. I don't plan on racing in the near future, but I am looking forward to upgrading this guy in future years!

Thanks all.
 

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Thanks padre - you're advice really helped. I'm gonna stick w/ the Camber base. I've been hemming and hawing about it for the past day or two and even though the Comp has a nicer spec, I just can't justify dropping the extra $600 or so for something that I'm not sure I'd even be able to tell the difference between the two rides, outside of the drivetrain, maybe.

I did have a question about fork upgrades, as this seems to be the main downside to the base model Camber. Plan is to ride this thing hard for the spring and summer and upgrade the fork next year or in the fall - any recommendations for a decent fork under $200? I've been reading up on the RockShox Tora and Suntour Epicon - I think these would fit in my budget and be a decent upgrade to the Suntour XCR that's currently on the Camber. I'm guessing next would be brakes, then drivetrain...


My goal is to have this bike last me awhile. I don't plan on racing in the near future, but I am looking forward to upgrading this guy in future years!

Thanks all.
I am a big specialized fan, but I would not recommend that bike, and yes because of the fork. If you are looking for a low budget bike check out the giant trance x 29er 2. You should be able to get it for about 1800. Much better speced bike for near the same price.
Trance X 29er 2 (2014) - Bikes | Giant Bicycles | United States
 

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Also did not even notice until I looked. It's a 9 speed... Thats old tech now... Especially with 11 speed stuff coming out. Very low end stuff. Go with the trance, or go with the next model up camber.

Are you stuck on a full suspension? You get much more bike for the money with a hard tail... A stumpjumper HT comp should be $1850 out the door. I have both an FSR and HT, i ride the HT way more and got it after I had my FSR.
 
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