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Riding in North VA
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started in the sport two years ago with a 2007 Rockhopper Disc and I feel ready for a major upgrade. I really want a full suspension bike but since I don't want to be reaching down and switching the locking valve every 15-20 minutes I'm thinking I want a bike with Brain. Although I have a friend with an FSR with Brain and I see how comfortable and controllable his ride is (1 or 2 times a month) I have read some scary things about the Brain and even the Specialized rear shocks. Some of the things I've read are Brain acting up and the rider having to basically turning it "off" (why pay for that), Specialized rear shocks bottoming out, etc. $3k is a lot of money (to me and to most) and buying something that will bring as many headaches as fun is not worth it to me especially knowing that there are so many other rear suspension models for less than $2k.

I ride 2.5 times a month with friends. Half of the time on a trail within a local park and the other half of the time it's on a local mountain where there are hills of 1 hour+ and ruff downhills that push you to 30 MH. :confused:

What's your advice....?
 

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I had a 2008 RH disc and purchased a 08 SJ Comp for the same reasons you are looking to upgrade. The confidence I have going downhill is amazing. The only time I switch to open is when I have a lenghty downhill or something real tech. I have had the bike since November and have had no problems using the Triad.
 

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If your only riding 2.5 times a month (how you do this I don't know) Just stick with what you have. Not trying to be a dick or anything,
 

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I upgraded to an Epic for exactly the same reasons you are citing... Then, within a year, I upgraded again to an Enduro. I'm not a racer, and the Epic was built for speed - no comfort/descending.

You don't need/want an epic... You probably want a Stumpjumper. I'm willing to bet if you bought an Epic and continued to ride the way you do, you'd eventually want to upgrade to a Stumpjumper. And you DON'T necessarily need one with a brain.

Try both if you can. But I think a 2008 Stumpjumper comp/pro would be a great bike for you.
 

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The Epic is a sweet ride, I am sure it will make you want to mountain bike even more. With Brain technology you can have your suspension set to a firm/efficient setting and sill be confident that your suspension will be fully active over rough terrain. Brain Fade adjust allows you to determine how firm of a platform you would like. MTBR is a great resource for customers to read reviews and ask questions it has also provided me a great format to allow me to help a customer should an issue arise, technical question be asked, or setup suggestion requested. Overall the 09 Epic provides exceptional performance and great reliability.

Brain technology is similarly applied in our high end Stumpjumper bikes and is trail tuned to match the intended experience of that bike.
 

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I'd have to agree with the above statements. It sounds like you really need a Stumpjumper. It will provide the same speed and agility, but will be more comfortable in the saddle and will absorb more of the rough stuff. I have the 08 SJ Expert with the brain and this thing has been simply outstanding. Climbs great, Downhills well, and just feels awesome. Having said that, I think the SJ Comp with the Triad shock will be adequate as well for you. Propedal would be enough to keep you from flipping switches and such. Good luck with your search, and lets see about bumping that 2.5 times per month up a bit :thumbsup:
 

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I'd have to agree with the above statements. It sounds like you really need a Stumpjumper. It will provide the same speed and agility, but will be more comfortable in the saddle and will absorb more of the rough stuff. I have the 08 SJ Expert with the brain and this thing has been simply outstanding. Climbs great, Downhills well, and just feels awesome. Having said that, I think the SJ Comp with the Triad shock will be adequate as well for you. Propedal would be enough to keep you from flipping switches and such. Good luck with your search, and lets see about bumping that 2.5 times per month up a bit :thumbsup:
 

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I'd have to agree with the above statements. It sounds like you really need a Stumpjumper. It will provide the same speed and agility, but will be more comfortable in the saddle and will absorb more of the rough stuff. I have the 08 SJ Expert with the brain and this thing has been simply outstanding. Climbs great, Downhills well, and just feels awesome. Having said that, I think the SJ Comp with the Triad shock will be adequate as well for you. Propedal would be enough to keep you from flipping switches and such. Good luck with your search, and lets see about bumping that 2.5 times per month up a bit :thumbsup:
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work FYI.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as other but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expenssive than an Epic.
 

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Riding in North VA
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work FYI.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as other but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expensive than an Epic.
 

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I'd have to agree with the above statements. It sounds like you really need a Stumpjumper. It will provide the same speed and agility, but will be more comfortable in the saddle and will absorb more of the rough stuff. I have the 08 SJ Expert with the brain and this thing has been simply outstanding. Climbs great, Downhills well, and just feels awesome. Having said that, I think the SJ Comp with the Triad shock will be adequate as well for you. Propedal would be enough to keep you from flipping switches and such. Good luck with your search, and lets see about bumping that 2.5 times per month up a bit :thumbsup:
 

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I'd have to agree with the above statements. It sounds like you really need a Stumpjumper. It will provide the same speed and agility, but will be more comfortable in the saddle and will absorb more of the rough stuff. I have the 08 SJ Expert with the brain and this thing has been simply outstanding. Climbs great, Downhills well, and just feels awesome. Having said that, I think the SJ Comp with the Triad shock will be adequate as well for you. Propedal would be enough to keep you from flipping switches and such. Good luck with your search, and lets see about bumping that 2.5 times per month up a bit :thumbsup:
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work FYI.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as other but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expensive than an Epic.
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work FYI.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as other but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expensive than an Epic.
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work FYI.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as other but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expensive than an Epic.
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work FYI.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as others but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expensive than an Epic.
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
2.5 times would be my average since I rode 2 times in May and 3 times in June, that's how averages work.

I may not be Mr. hardcore and I may not ride as often as others but with work and two kids such is life.

So a SJ worked well for you UCLA ANDY, no issues with the Specialized brand shock and the Brain? I like SJ's but if I'm not mistaken a SJ with Brain is more expensive than an Epic. If I do get a rear suspension bike such as the SJ w/o Brain, isn't that going to really hold me back on the up hills? Half of the time I ride on a mountain not a trail and 3/4 of the time I'm going up hill. I would hate to feel the tail giving in while my legs are burning big time.
 

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Riding in North VA
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238 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
If I do get a rear suspension bike such as the SJ w/o Brain, isn't that going to really hold me back on the up hills? Half of the time I ride on a mountain not a trail and 3/4 of the time I'm going up hill. I would hate to feel the tail giving in while my legs are burning big time.
 

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PROEDGEBIKER.COM
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APO.Guy said:
If I do get a rear suspension bike such as the SJ w/o Brain, isn't that going to really hold me back on the up hills? Half of the time I ride on a mountain not a trail and 3/4 of the time I'm going up hill. I would hate to feel the tail giving in while my legs are burning big time.
you will hate a stumpy in the uphills.. unless if you like the BOB BOB BOB effect, even the stumpy with the brain has more sag than the Epic.
One thing that the stumpy will offer you is more travel(which sounds what you'll need).

My suggestion to you is for you to go to your LBS and try both bikes out.
Even for Florida my buddy got sick of the bobbing from his 08' Stumpy Comp and turned to the 09' Epic..

He was pretty pissed at the LBS for not even telling him about the EPIC when he was 1st there to purchase a nice bike.
 

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Do you think you're going to be riding more in the future? Do you think buying a new bike will help you ride more in the future? IMO, if you're only riding two or three times per month, it's not worth it to spend $3k. And don't be a jerk to people - you have to admit saying you ride 2.5 times a month is a big ambiguous and the guy had the same idea that blowing $3k for 25-30 rides a year might be a waste.

That said, we'd need to know more about what you're riding (trail wise) and what you want to ride in the future. I've found the Epic to be great for my riding, which is longer rides on singletrack, which is sometimes rocky-ish but usually fairly smooth, long climbs and some decent downhills. I'll hit 30mph or so sometimes, but those are usually on fireroads that are fast and fairly smooth, and I don't jump. For me, a Stumpjumper would be overkill for all but a few rides a year and for those, I have the option to rent, borrow a friends bigger bike (like my friends Prophet) or just make the Epic work.

If you see yourself doing bigger stuff in the future, like frequently riding big rocks, drops, jumps, etc. Go Stumpjumper, or even check out some Cannondale bikes. I love the Rize 3.
 
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