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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys. Looking for some opinions. I’m currently in the market for an XC bike. Currently I have a new Santa Cruz 5010 that is my all around fun trail bike. I used to have a 2013 Epic marathon that I loved and raced in some XC events. Now with this Evo it changes a bit. I want something to do XC races especially the BC bike race. And all day marathon rides. Do I stick with the normal Epic or go for a Evo. It’s been years since I’ve shopped around for a XC bike. Lots have changed
 

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I have a 2018 Epic and my trail bike used a to be 2013 5010. I just completed Breck Epic for the 2nd time on my Epic.

There is no real difference between and Epic and and Epic Evo except dropper and fork and those are easy changes. My epic is actual little of both.

I have 100mm Fox 32 Step Cast fork, 24mm wide carbon wheels running 2.35 front Ikon and 2.2 XR2 rear. When these wear out I am going to 2.4 XR3 front and 2.35 XR2 rear. For 2018 I did not a dropper post, but I did for 2019.

I have found a dropper to be very handy in a lot of places and comparing the two years there were a few bits where in 2018 it was really sketchy on the DH with fixed seat post. In 2019 those spots were MUCH easier, but even in places I rode with seat up with no "issues" with dropper I was either slightly faster or same speed and more relaxed. Over the course of 6 days I much faster than in 2018. I can't say all of that was the dropper, but I have to believe it helped. I do not feel the sight weight increase hurt me at all. I am using a KS LevCi 65mm dropper. So light carbon to minimize the weight impact and short drop, but still very effective.

So at this point the only difference with my Epic as compared to an Evo is 120 SC vs 100 SC. I don't really feel the need to go with 120 on the front. The fork is heavier and will change the geometry slightly. The dropper does also add weight, but keeps the geo the same unlike the fork. I could easily change to a 120 SC, but really I don't want to. Now at Breck this year I saw many Epic and a few Epic Evo. Droppers were pretty common in the field and I believe that even for XC racing that having on is worth the weight penalty. Even more so on longer races where you can be more relaxed with seat down just a little. I believe it more effective than a 1 deg slacker HA you get from a longer fork.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I see. I didn’t know they use the same frame. I was looking at the geometry numbers and they were different. Makes sense it’s because of the different fork. Well written. Thank you for that in depth response
 

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Definitly Epic EVO for what you want to do...and in general. The fox34 is same weight as the sid, even a bit lighter.

I bought the epic expert 2019 but just bought a fox34 and fox dropper. So much fun and capable ! I could do the technical stuff but now it's much more fun!
 

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For all day rides, definitely the Evo. I bought my Epic prior to the release of the Epic Evo and I felt like I was taking a beating with a 100mm fork. Futzed around with various tunes and tweaks and wound up putting a 120 Pike on it. Now the bike is super capable for me.
 

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I had an Epic Comp carbon which I sold last fall. I converted it to Evo. Fitted a dropper from the get go, as I'm used to it from my trail bikes, and the weight penalty is not really much. I then fitted a 120mm Revelation by chance, as the Reba it came with imploded.

To be fair, for normal rides (both trail and XC), the standard Epic is seriously capable when fitted with a dropper. But I always felt I had to go more carefully with the 100mm fork. The more solid 120 will let you attack harder in the rough, and the slacker head angle also helps a bit on the descents. I didn't feel like the extra travel made the bike any slower or less snappy.

For all-day riding, I'd go with the longer fork. Also if you do long trail races, like BCBR. I did a few trail ultras with it, and the 120 front made it more comfortable and easier to ride.

But, if you're going all-out for sub 2-hr trail racing, 100mm is enough.

Kinda miss it...sold it just when the Evo arrived over here.

BTW, the Expert Evo comes with a lovely set of wheels, making it even more burly. The standarsd wheels on my coimp carbon were heavy and soft, so I ran Roval carbon wheels.
 

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I have owned a few generations of epics at this point and have raced for several years. I have always thought the epic was a fantastic bike. This time around i was pretty set on the epic expert as they had the color i wanted, parts were good, everything.
I still have the intention of racing but have gravitated more towards longer events so i like the thought of the evo.

I planned to buy the plain expert, keep the sid and order a fox 34 and dropper.
Then the Expert evo ended up being a better deal as it got discounted pretty heavily.
I ordered it. Then on my first ride i questioned why i would have ever put that sid back on the expert. The Epic Expert EVO is an AMAZING bike. It's the most fun i've had on a bike in a LONG time.
It's fast, climbs like a goat, rips downhill (for an XC bike or even a shorter travel trail bike)
For the style of riding i enjoy, whether racing or just out ripping or exploring, it's absolutely perfect.
Geo is awesome, fox 34 is great, i say go with the evo from what you've said.

Or if you get a good deal on a comp carbon or something. Snag it and order a fox 34 stepcast and dropper for it. You won't regret it.
 
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