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Specialized S-Works Mountain Bike, circa 1988

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Specialized S-Works Mountain Bike, circa 1988

Old 09-23-12, 01:10 PM
  #1  
CzTom
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Specialized S-Works Mountain Bike, circa 1992

I'm wondering what this bike is worth... My sister bought it new from Specialized (where she worked) in late 80's. It's got a carbon frame painted a very dark purple metallic, all XTR components (except Specialized head set, hubs?). It has not been ridden in 10 years, and was maintained by their shop in Morgan Hill before I got back in '98, so it's in pretty good shape. Any ideas about what it may be worth?

Last edited by CzTom; 09-24-12 at 12:32 PM.
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Old 09-23-12, 01:28 PM
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It's not as old as you think, as XTR didn't debut until 1992. ATBs tend not to hold their value as well as road bicycles, as they suffer more from mileage and the technology gets outdated quicker. Most members are reluctant to give values without pictures, especially on ATBs.
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Old 09-23-12, 02:38 PM
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OK, I went out and took a few pictures after dusting the bike off. I also looked at the components, and they're all XTR (including hubs) 900 series.
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Old 09-23-12, 03:36 PM
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I agree I think the "S Work" label didn't come along until '91 or 92. If you do a really good job cleaning it up and are willing to work with someone on getting it shipped you might get $200-250 or a bit more for it, listed on CL or ebay.





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Old 09-24-12, 05:59 AM
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That's first generation XTR (M900 series), which should place the bicycle 1992-1995 inclusive. 2nd genration XTR (M950 series) came out in 1996 and was anodized dark grey in addition to other styling changes like a four arm spider on the crankset versus five, V-brakes versus cantilvers, etc. I may be able to narrow things down further via the serial number.
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Old 09-24-12, 07:37 AM
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I'll go take a look at the serial number after work today. Meanwhile, is there a way I can change the year in the thread title to 1992? I'm not much of a forum wiz...
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Old 09-24-12, 11:04 PM
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The serial number is 1H1375 followed by either a 0 or a circled I, hard to tell exactly. Hope this helps determine the year. Any other opinions out there as to how much this bike may be worth? I know this bike's entire history from new; it's been very lightly used, mostly paved or smooth bike trails; It has seen maybe 200 miles of forest trail riding; everything works very smoothly now, although it seems to need new inner tubes. Thanks for your advice and comments!
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Old 09-25-12, 06:42 AM
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Cool bike! There should be a 9 in front of that serial number to make it a '91. If you part it out, you probably have $400-$450. As a whole, maybe $300-$350 to a collector if you are willing to list it on Ebay and then do the work to ship it.
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Old 09-25-12, 04:27 PM
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What's with these low(ish) values?

I'd personally pay $350 cash just to have it in my collection. XTR (even the old stuff) still sells for a lot of money on ebay and someone could make a lot parting it out. I would not let it go for anything less than $300.
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Old 09-25-12, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by FastJake View Post
What's with these low(ish) values?

I'd personally pay $350 cash just to have it in my collection. XTR (even the old stuff) still sells for a lot of money on ebay and someone could make a lot parting it out. I would not let it go for anything less than $300.
To most peopkle who would see it at a yard sale it is just an old MTB.
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Old 09-25-12, 04:42 PM
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According to Bikepedia, this model(providing it is carbon fiber)went for about $4800 in 1993.What are all these low figures?
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Old 09-25-12, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by trek330 View Post
According to Bikepedia, this model(providing it is carbon fiber)went for about $4800 in 1993.What are all these low figures?
There were two version of the lugs on this bike - steel and titanium. This one's steel unless the OP took off the 'Ultimate' decal from the top tube. I didn't look at bikepedia, but my guess is that price is the titanium version.

As stated above, old MTBs do not hold their value unless they are very collectible. I think $350 for a 20 year old MTB is a good price considering how easy it is to find an all XT bike from the same period for $200. Most of the value of this bike is it's rarity and it's very desirable component group.
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Old 09-25-12, 08:21 PM
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Easy $5-600 with full XTR on EBAY. Carbon Sworks from that era are not a dime a dozen. I have NEVER seen one for sale locally. I'd give $400 and I am so tight I squeak .

Last edited by Fred Smedley; 09-25-12 at 08:44 PM.
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Old 09-25-12, 10:22 PM
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Appreciate the comments; the frame and paint is original from the factory, including all the stickers, so it's probably a year or two before the Ultimate came out with the titanium lugs. I looked at Bikepedia, and they start at 1993, so I'm pretty sure this bike pre-dates the Ultimate, and perhaps was Specialized's first carbon frame MTB. As I said earlier, my sister bought this bike new directly from Specialized at an employee discount when she worked for them at their Morgan Hill, CA, headquarters. What I remember was that it was their top-of-the-line MTB at the time, and she got it early in the model run, maybe even before it hit retailers. Thus, probably around '91...and it's never been sold since (I inherited it when she quit riding). It has some sentimental value to me and I'd prefer that it end up with a collector rather than a yard sale. If anyone wants to see it, I'm in SoCal.
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Old 09-25-12, 11:16 PM
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As I recall, S Works started in '93. I had a '93 S Works Steel frame and fork, in a deep, dark green. The S Works Carbon was the refinement of the Stumpjumper Epic Ultimate, which Ned Overend rode in '92 and '93.
Many sources quote different dates, including Specialized... I think yours is a '94, going by color. Those XTR M900 components sure were smooth!

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Old 09-26-12, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Fred Smedley View Post
Easy $5-600 with full XTR on EBAY. Carbon Sworks from that era are not a dime a dozen. I have NEVER seen one for sale locally. I'd give $400 and I am so tight I squeak .
I'd pay $401 - do I get the bike?


I knew I had read about these bikes somewhere and found the article this morning -
https://www.retrobike.co.uk/forum/v/M...sticFantastic/
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Old 09-26-12, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by trek330 View Post
According to Bikepedia, this model(providing it is carbon fiber)went for about $4800 in 1993.What are all these low figures?
As suggested, this is not the 1993 Specialized S Works Ultimate with the titanium lugs. The serial number and components establish this as a 1992 Specialized S Works carbon that was manufactured in late 1991. The MSRP price on this bicycle was $2599.

Unfortunately, ATBs due not hold values as well as road bicycles. The technological advances in ATBs were larger and took place over a shorter period, limiting their appeal for practical use. Any off-road use takes a higher toll on an ATB than equivalent mileage on a road bicycle, making them a more risky proposition. Finally, in the high end there just aren't as many collectors.

While the bicycle appears to be in great condition, I think the realistic upper end for this bicycle would be about $500, unless the OP can find someone who absolutely has to have a 1992 S Works Carbon. If he puts it on Ebay and finds two, the sky could be the limit but if there's only one, he could settle for only a few hundred or even less. As a fellow forum member is fond of saying, " Ebay is a crapshoot".

Last edited by T-Mar; 09-26-12 at 06:15 AM.
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Old 08-07-14, 03:43 PM
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You may have a very expensive bike here.

If this is an Specialized S-Works Carbon with Titanium Lugs, you may have a very expensive bike here. From some threads online, I have read that it was only 1 of 60 made, and I have seen just the frame sell for over $3000.

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Originally Posted by CzTom View Post
I'm wondering what this bike is worth... My sister bought it new from Specialized (where she worked) in late 80's. It's got a carbon frame painted a very dark purple metallic, all XTR components (except Specialized head set, hubs?). It has not been ridden in 10 years, and was maintained by their shop in Morgan Hill before I got back in '98, so it's in pretty good shape. Any ideas about what it may be worth?
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