Someone wants to sell me an enduro s works bike that is about 3-5 years old (he said he doesn't remember exactly when he got it). It has lots of little scratches and there is wear showing on it. I like mountain biking, though I've never used a bike in this league. He wants to sell it to me for $1,200.
1. Can anyone give me an idea if this is a good bike for this amount of money?
2. Is there a way for me to determine which year this bike was sold?
The label on it reads:
M5 double butted aluminum
Try Specialized's bike archive (at Specialized.com, click Bikes > Archive). Compare the color and detailed parts specs of the bike to the different years of S-Works Enduros and you'll probably be able to narrow it down. Note that the S-Works Enduro will be listed under S-Works Mountain, not the "production" Enduro category.
Bigger picture: the production year should not be your primary concern here. Condition is the relevant thing, and you'd be best off having a trusted, experienced mechanic look it over in person. Also, it needs to fit you properly, and be the type of bike that fits what you want to do... they're an all-mountain bike, so not your ideal pick for all-out XC or all-out freeride/DH.
To put things in perspective, my son's 2006 S-Works Enduro listed for $5,700. Mind you, he got it on a next-season closeout so he didn't pay near that for it; BUT - - they are not cheap machines. If everything checks out well and, as mech says, it actually suits you, it's probably a heckuva buy.
That's the older, second-generation (partial monocoque) Enduros. Still fine machines but not nearly as heady of worth any more. Thousand-ish might still be reasonable if it's super-sano and if it's to the '04 side. They hung a lot of good parts on them.
A Bikepedia check may help narrow down the year some:
TBH, I think you should be looking at a bit newer bikes, I think you'd better look at '08-'10 bikes for that price. The condition of that thing doesn't seem to be too good and I'm sure that even if those parts were the best that you could get back then, times have changed, and now those parts, especially since they seem to be quite worn out are no better than todays "base model parts". Anyway, good luck with what ever road you go!
What do you mean by they are the nasty integrated "STI" ones? What makes them nasty?
1. the brake lever blade is a shifter. You push it downwards to shift one way, and lift it up with the tops of your fingers (seriously, I am not making this up) to shift the other way. They were intended to be used with reverse-shifting "low-normal" rear derailleurs. Riding with that setup is a mind game on top of another mind game, I've tried 'em.
2. since it's a hydraulic system, you can't just go "haha, I'll stick some different shifters on there!" because the shifter is also the hydraulic brake lever. So now you need new brake levers and have to transplant hoses and bleed brakes OR buy a whole new brake system.
3. the XTR ones are also a pain to change shift cables in. Shimano's site has a FAQ devoted just to the task of getting the dasm lever open so you can get at the cable.
Also, those cranks have their own unique chainring bolt circle, so replacing chainrings will be tricky, not many choices. Oh and furthermore, those are the model of XTR brake calipers where you adjust pad-to-rotor clearance with little horseshoe-shaped shims, just a pure irritation to work on.
Thanks everyone for the great input! I also took the bike to a local shop and they told me it needed lots of work and was definitely not worth the asking price. I'm going to start a new thread based looking for advice on the new bike I am considering.