I think the Epic Marathon with the longer travel F-100 Fox Fork would be a pretty nice ride. A lot of this is just personal preference. I have seen some endurance guys going for HT 29ers and others riding rigid frames. Look at the Epic Marathon and then convince yourself that something else is better.
what kind of stuff are you riding in/through (technical, hardpack, etc.)? I just got an epic about 6 weeks ago for xc racing. Its great, 100 mm in front and back (Have the 2006 comp). Can be setup to ride very plush or stiff. Its a very versatile race bike, but having said that I'm sure the SJ can be turned into a great race bike.
I mostly ride flat well kept trails and hills with some tight technical climbs
and a few half meter drops here and there, nothing too extreme. The main
reason for my post was to find out which bike is more comfortable after 6 hours or so in the saddle. I'm leaning more towards the epic but i don't have any interest in racing.
When i ride i generally pedal as hard as i can with no finesse.
I've raced on an S Works Epic and 3 FSR's and can say for your riding style you'd probably want an epic. The fsr is better in rougher terrain but you gotta be more smooth. The epic is the perfect aggressive style full suspension and feels like a hardtail no matter how ugly your pedaling style - better than any other full suspension. On the other hand, if you almost never stand up and pedal like me then the brain isnt necessary for good performance and where I live now in Colorado 5" of travel is a good thing to have and I'd reckon maybe a bit lighter.
Went and had a test ride on the Epic & Stumpjumper today. Both were great rides, but
the Epic seems to be better suited to my riding style. Do you think upgrading the fork
to a F100x with terralogic would be a good move?
yea, i feel the RL bobs quite a bit, but I don't have the money to replace it with anything better. Besides, the Rl is the first fox shock I've ever had and it beats the crap out of my previous manitou's. VIVA LA FOX!
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