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  1. #1
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    Specialized Epic 29er, what do you think?

    I did some searching, but haven't seen much about the new 2011 Specialize 29er class.

    I ride a hard tail and about 95% of my riding XC with some pretty technical stuff. I'm currently considering a 2011 Specialized Epic Comp Carbon 29er (http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...cname=Mountain) but would like some opinions on alternatives/need for a 29er. I'm 6'2", 200lbs. I have been riding for a while but am not the most technical or fastest. I can hold my own though, and I am looking to take my riding up a notch. I want a nice bike that will last and work for me in the years to come. Money isn't as big as a concern as is finding the right bike. I rode the non carbon version and it was a world of difference from my 2006 Kona hard tail.

    Thanks in advance everyone

  2. #2
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    If nobody has opinions on the Specialized, what about a Yeti 575/AS-R?

  3. #3
    In search of moar cowbell dminor's Avatar
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    ^^ THAT I'll give you an opinion about. The 575 represents (to my mind) the height of trailbike perfection: long enough travel, slack enough geometry, the simplicity of an efficient single-pivot design, all wrapped up in superb Yeti fit-and-finish and attention to detail. It is a machine that will give you as many years of great riding as you care to own it.

  4. #4
    Road, XC and Cross
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    Listen to him ^^^

  5. #5
    Senior Member 2runco's Avatar
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    I love my 2010 Epic Comp 29er. Too old to be competitive overall, but competed in 5 races this Summer ranging from a short time trial, to a 6 hour XC endurance event. Had a blast, and the bike performed flawlessly. The bike has been so solid that I have not even had it back to the shop for any reason.
    If I had it to do over again, would likely spend more money for the carbon fiber version. Primarily for the reduced weight. Thinking about replacing the wheelset this Winter to reduce weight, but also thinking about replacing the whole bike with the carbon version next Spring.
    And, man, that S Works Epic 29er is beautiful.
    Yeti bikes are rare where I live, but plentiful in CO and I read lots of good things about them.
    If you liked the lower end Epic on a test ride, I suspect you will really love the carbon version. Handling is quick and lively, and the bike is really responsive and loves to go fast.
    Good luck.

  6. #6
    Klickety-Klackety Jeepnut22's Avatar
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    ^^^ This!!

    XC riding/racing is what the Epic is made for. I have a long travel bike and for 75% of the riding I do it's overkill (but I luv it). Seriously considering a carbon Epic 29er to compliment my Enduro. I wish I had gotten an Epic type bike first, then the long travel bike. Then I wouldn't have to slug my 31 lb. All Mountain bike all over the place.
    Wut

  7. #7
    Old School Rad mtnbiker66's Avatar
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    I think the steel SS 29er is the bombdiggity. If you guys don't think so you can just ...........well, you know.
    Like a circus monkey on a stolen Harley......

  8. #8
    motovation frankenmike's Avatar
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    If money is no concern, go for the s-works- 9,400.00, 22 lbs.

  9. #9
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    Well I didn't say it was of NO concern. Maybe I should have clarified that I'm looking in the $3000-$4000 range rather than put it in more ambiguous terms.

    At this point in my riding, I think ANYTHING will be an upgrade. My concern with the 575 (and even AS-R) is that, as Jeepnut said, the longer travel. I'm really looking for singletrack perfection. I climb equally if not more than I ride downhill (is that possible??). I'm in Northern California and pretty much all of the riding I do is singletrack.

    My buddy had a Yeti and they're pretty freaking awesome, so that's mainly why I'm toying with the idea of one, even though the non-carbon Epic Comp 29er was really nice and I'm kind of sold on the carbon version. Anyways, guess I want to get the bang for my buck.

    I guess my other concern with the Yeti is that they don't offer a 29er in full suspension. Maybe in a year or two?

  10. #10
    Senior Member victim's Avatar
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    Those two bikes are not that close for intended type of riding. i think you should broaden your search a bit. 3-4k buys a lot of bike, you don't want to make a mistake right?

  11. #11
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    Do you have any suggestions, victim? Do you mean that the 575 is more all mtn vs xc? I'm considering the asr carbon as well.
    Last edited by ocie; 11-16-10 at 07:39 AM.

  12. #12
    In search of moar cowbell dminor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by victim View Post
    you don't want to make a mistake right?
    You can't possibly make a mistake getting a 575. But there are a ton of other purchases one could make and then regret NOT having gotten one.

  13. #13
    Senior Member victim's Avatar
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    You should decide if you want 29 or 26 inch wheels, pros and cons to each. Then decide (and it's tough to be honest with yourself here) just how aggressive of trails your going to ride. That will bring the pool of bikes down considerably.

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    Well, like I said, I'm in Northern California and won't be doing much, if any, serious downhill. Maybe at some point I might take it to a ski resort in the summer, or go down to Santa Cruz. But even then, I've ridden in SC on my hardtail and done just fine.

    I go back and forth between 26 and 29. I haven't ridden a full suspension 26, but the Epic Comp 29er was awesome.

    I honestly thing the ASR Carbon would be more up my alley in terms of geometry and intent, but it might be too racey. Has anyone ridden one?

  15. #15
    Life is a fun ride safariofthemind's Avatar
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    Recently did a test of 29 and 26 bikes. I liked the 29's better but it depends on how tall you are. I'm 5'10" and for someone under 5'8" or so they might be better off on a 26, honestly. Just my 2 cents and YMMV of course. Don't mean to open up that debate here. Just saying you probably need to ride some current designs of equivalent bikes in both sizes and do your own test rather than be swayed by hype.

  16. #16
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    It will depend on the type of trails you visit. I did not like the 29er for technical switch back single tracks,...................but for bombing down the hill it was great. I was able to demo both a 26er and 29er on the same day on the same trail.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by dminor View Post
    You can't possibly make a mistake getting a 575. But there are a ton of other purchases one could make and then regret NOT having gotten one.
    It would be a mistake if he wants an XC race bike. Of the three the Spec will be the best for that niche. The ASR 5 fits somewhere between I suppose. If the OP wants a 29er with more of a trailbike feel the stumpjumper 29ers seem pretty sweet. I haven't ridden one but have seen a couple out on the trail

  18. #18
    In search of moar cowbell dminor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S View Post
    It would be a mistake if he wants an XC race bike.
    And from what of anything he said might we infer that at all?

  19. #19
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    I've narrowed it down to a Yeti AS-R 5 Carbon, Yeti AS-R Carbon (more unlikely), or a Specialized Epic Comp Carbon 29er. I don't think I'll ever be serious enough for an AS-R, so it's more likely between the former and latter options.

    I do have to say, I like the idea that I can get the Yeti completely customized if I want to spend more, whereas the Specialized is pretty much out of the box. I guess that's the difference between a boutique company and a mass producing company.

    I'll update this thread when I make a decision, if anyone cares. Thanks for the assistance and feel free to post more info or advice.

  20. #20
    Pint-Sized Gnar Shredder Zephyr11's Avatar
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    You have to be a "serious" rider to ride an AS-R? Well, crap, no one ever told me that before I bought my bike.

    You won't go wrong with any of those bikes. They're all good, capable bikes, though they will all ride differently, so test ride them before you make a decision. Especially that 29er. I've heard some people say they love their 29ers and think 26ers are obsolete and pointless, while other people hate 29ers and you couldn't pay them to get a bike with big wheels.

    Yetis come with different build combinations. It's not completely custom unless you just buy a frame and build it yourself (which you can also do with the Specialized).

  21. #21
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    Sorry maybe I incorrectly phrased a few things.

    By completely customizable I meant I like the different build kit options.

    And by serious I mean that the AS-R seems more limited to singletrack/xc with the integrated seatpost (I like to drop mine if by chance I am doing a long or steeper descent).

  22. #22
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    Well I just got back from my first ride on the Epic 29er and man, I could not be happier. I rode at China Camp in Marin CA and it was just greatl. Coming from a hard tail it was a world of difference. I was in between the Comp and Expert, but I can't get an Expert until late January, so I decided on the Comp. Also, the store gave me $200 off and a $400 gift card which I used to upgrade the rear derailleur, cassette and shifters to SRAM XX.

    I was a bit concerned starting out just because on my test rides around the neighborhood I could feel the brain click on sometimes, but once I was on the trail it felt like a normal shock engaging.

    For those not familiar with the brain system, you can control the sensitivity of engagement at the unit located on the rear triangle. I started out four clicks from the firmest setting and it wasn't quite engaging over some roots and smaller rocks. At our first break backed it off to six clicks from firm and wow, what a difference. The rest of the ride it wast just butter. It ate the trail up.

    At the end of the ride I saw a small trail that cut the corner of the main one, leading up a steep grass-covered hill. I decided to see what the brain would do during an intense uphill pounding section, and it was rock solid. I had to get out of my saddle and crank because I was in too low a gear and it gripped and flew up the hill like a hard-tail. Awesome.

    Needless to say I am completely stoked on this bike and am so happy I bought it. I most definitely recommend it. Here are some pics. Oh, and the front shock was great too. It doesn't have a brain and it doesn't say "Fox," but it was very smooth and rode great.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  23. #23
    In search of moar cowbell dminor's Avatar
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    Good to hear. Here's to many, many miles of great riding with it.

  24. #24
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    Thanks. And thanks for the input, I just couldn't pull the trigger on a Yeti. Partly because there were no demos around here until next year and the only one I could ride would have been a medium for $100, whereas the specialized dealer just let me demo the bike at no cost.

  25. #25
    Senior Member 2runco's Avatar
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    Congrats. That's one beautiful bike. Looks fast when standing still.

    And just a small word of caution. By transporting your Epic next to that Trek you may be risking the potential transfer of frame gremlins.

    Enjoy.

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