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  1. #1
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    Banshee Prime vs Stumpjumper Evo FSR 29

    Looking to get an AM/light freeride bike- I'm 6'6" 250 and am looking at these two bikes. Everyone has told me to go for the Specialized... But something is drawing me toward the Banshee.

    What do you guys think?

  2. #2
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    Banshee > specialized

  3. #3
    FM
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    The specialized looks pretty nice, but I'd vote for the Prime!

    I really dig my Prime proto. Shorter chainstays than the specialized by 12mm, adjustable geometry, and I suspect stiffer as well.

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    Specialized > banshee

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    I haven't ridden the Prime, but I have been riding a V1 Rune for the last 3 seasons and love it. I had a chance to demo the Stumpy Evo 29 and here are the things I noticed.

    Good Stuff

    Front end handling. I immediately felt comfortable on the EVO. Steered all most identical to my Rune (140mm Revelation, regular external headset). Found the EVO cornered as well as the Rune, and did fine in some of the tight tech stuff. Take this with a grain of salt, as I have only be riding for a few years. Trail I was riding are very techinical, but no elevation (sub 200ft).

    Lively at the pedals. I thought the big 29er wheels would make it feel slow, but I felt like it spun up to speed faster than my Rune, even though the wheelset/tires was about 1 lb heavier on the EVO.

    The EVO was also way lighter. Sub 29 lb ( the dropper post was not installed), where as my Rune sits at about 30 lb. Similar build on both revelation forks, avid elixir brakes, x9 shifting. SEat, seat post, and pedals where the one off my Rune. Lighter cranks on the EVO, but heavier tires/wheelset.

    Bad Stuff

    SQUAT!!! Lots of squat. I have got very used to the anti squat of the Rune. On the Rune, any small tech climbs I would just stand up, pull on the bars and mash the pedals and the rear tire would drive into the ground, extending the rear suspension a bit, thereby giving me lots of pedal clearance. With a little timing, the bike would get up anything as long as I could keep the power down.

    When I tried this with the EVO the back end would compress, lowering the BB, and I would then usually catch a rock with a pedal. One time a rock actually hooked the pedal and almost yanked the bike out from under me. I spent some time playing with the air pressure and compressing settings of the rear shock, but the would always be some squat.

    If you are the kind of rider that leans more to the sit and spin technique for climbing, I think the EVO would be awesome. If you like stand and mash, or tend to bail from time to time, I think the anti squat and burlier frame of the Prime is the way to go. That's my $0.02

  6. #6
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    Thanks guys, especially bigwookie. I'm still really torn... any other input from others?

  7. #7
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    never riden one but the prime seems a bit "heftier" than the evo. something a gentleman of your stature probably wants to take into account. also on the prime you could run a coil or dh air shock which would probably suit you better than the ctd the evo sticks you with.

  8. #8
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    Prime...because its bad@ss and you won't want a new one every year.
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  9. #9
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    The KS link is a great compromise between the DW-Link & FSR (I have tons of saddle time on both), but the CTD shock (stock damper) does little to inspire me.
    The frame stiffness of the Banshee is currently unrivaled in 29er land.

    If you go with Banshee, the rear shock might need a massage from PUSH...depending on riding style.


  10. #10
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    +1 on this Bigwookie

    "When I tried this with the EVO the back end would compress, lowering the BB, and I would then usually catch a rock with a pedal. One time a rock actually hooked the pedal and almost yanked the bike out from under me. I spent some time playing with the air pressure and compressing settings of the rear shock, but the would always be some squat."

    My experience is exactly the same with my FSR. At the moment I prefer to ride techy terrain in the granny even if it means that cross-gear alot. Will try a 26 or 28 as a single front ring before I give up on the FSR...
    Rip the bring!

  11. #11
    FM
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    Couple thoughts on the KS-link suspension. I also have an older v1 rune, the KS-link on the prime is much more “neutral” feeling. Less pedal feedback and chain stretch, less platform, and also less of that rearward axle path that makes the rune so plush with coil shocks. Kinda like JNC mentioned… the KS link is sort of half-way between the traditional FSR feel and a more mini- link feel.
    I’ve run a few shocks on mine, PUSH’d rp23 is feeling great.
    The prime is probably the stiffest bike I have ever owned. I’d think the FSR is more like a beefy trailbike, where the Prime was designed from scratch to be ridden like a 160mm 26’r. I haven’t ridden an EVO FSR so I may be wrong.

    Need to post photos of my new custom graphics!
    Last edited by FM; 11-12-2012 at 05:23 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM View Post
    Need to post photos of my new custom graphics!
    Ummmmmm...yeah!


  13. #13
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    I am very much leaning toward a Prime for my next purchase!
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM View Post

    Need to post photos of my new custom graphics!
    Quote Originally Posted by jncarpenter View Post
    Ummmmmm...yeah!
    Definitely.

  15. #15
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    I demo'd a specialized 29er evo carbon this past weekend in AZ. All I can say is that is the nicest riding bike I have ever been on! Hands down. Ive been riding mt bikes 23 years. While I am by no means a pro. Ive put my share of upper end bikes thru their paces over the years. While I'm sure the prime kicks ass. (I Love Banshee. Currently have a Skythe in my fleet) Until Banshee steps up and goes carbon, the specialized stumpy carbon evo is really in a league all it's own. Now I just need the 10k for that Ferrari of a machine.

  16. #16
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    Carbon over alum all day so my pick would be EVO... Banshee is sweet I have one but at the end of the day fsr Is butter over any terrain.

  17. #17
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    Just throwing this out there, what about the new Intense Spider 29 comp?
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    Just throwing this out there, what about the new Intense Spider 29 comp?
    It's a nice bike; I demo'ed one and enjoyed it. But I sure wouldn't classify it as "AM/light freeride."
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by appleSSeed View Post
    Prime...because its bad@ss and you won't want a new one every year.

    Got to agree. Loving my Stumpy but imho the Banshee looks like a set it and forget it bike you may want to enjoy for at least 3 years.
    '14 Epic Marathon 29 for sale
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by evasive View Post
    It's a nice bike; I demo'ed one and enjoyed it. But I sure wouldn't classify it as "AM/light freeride."
    Just curious why. I'm just now gaining a small grasp as to geo numbers, but they look pretty similar between the Evo and the Spider.
    The travel is 8mm shorter, but the head angle is .5 degrees slacker and chain stay is a little shorter than the Evo.

    Just learning, so curious.
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  21. #21
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    I just ordered a Spider comp 29 and I would say it is similiar to the evo if you build it with a 34 (not the 32's on a lot of their demos) and run it in the 130mm rear travel setting. As the poster stated above, geometry and travel would put it right in the same class. That said, I wouldn't classify the Evo or the Spider as AM/Light Freeride. I would put them both in the trail/aggressive trail category depending on the builds.

    Briefly rode an EVO 29 and it felt nice, just a bit long in the back. I like shorter stays like on the SB95 and Spider comp. I wouldn't hesitate buying an EVO though if I wasn't rightly or wrongly obsessed with the shorter stays.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    Just curious why.
    The quick answer is that Intense classifies the market segment for it as "XC - light trail." I think it's a much more capable frame than that implies, and a skilled (and smooth!) rider could do a lot with it. But it's not really designed for the kind of abuse that an AM frame is expected to survive.
    "Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman

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  23. #23
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    I wouldn't go by what is on Intense's website, but it is actually classified as XC/Trail/Enduro under the frame details right above their geometry. I would classify the Evo and Spider as the Trail/light enduro if it were me with the EVO being ever so slightly more aggressive with the marginally longer travel in the rear.

    Frankly, I would say the Spider would be a very poor XC bike based on travel, geometry and weight. The bike is approved for up to 150mm fork and most of the people at Intense prefer rallying it with 140mm travel 34's and I am sure those guys can ride. The bike is built to a similiar weight to the Carbine (which can take abuse) and has 3 year warranty against defects.

    If indeed I break it after giving it a thorough thrashing, I will be sure to post up my experiences.

    Sorry for the thread derail, back to the topic at hand!

  24. #24
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    I did say I've ridden one. It's a nice trail bike, but it's nothing like the Prime in terms of burliness. How it compares to the Stumpy EVO I have no idea, as I haven't seen one of the latter.
    "Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman

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  25. #25
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    Prime would be burlier than both in my opinion and would be what I would want to be rocking if I was bombing down Porcupine Rim. But just an opinion.

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