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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Twowheelchris's Avatar
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    Aug 2013

    2014 Spearfish for AZT, CT? Other similar alternatives?

    I currently ride (and really like) a Giant Anthem X 29er that I have used for just about everything but it has a few characteristics I don't like for bikepacking or long endurance rides. It feels like more of an XC race bike with a steep HT angle that does not give me much confidence on steep descents and drops for example. It feels tall and there isn't much room for a frame bag either. The Maestro suspension is awesome though. When I bought it I considered the Spearfish but they were similar enough and the price of the Spearfish was much higher so I went with the Giant. Since then I've become a big fan of Giant bikes in general but they don't make a real endurance/bikepacking bike so I'm considering other brands.

    I've signed up for the 24 HITOP solo and been seriously considering the CT and AZT so I'm thinking it might be worth investing in a different bike. I just looked up the specs for the 2014 Spearfish and really like what I see (except the price). Much shorter chainstays, 69.3 HT angle, 51 mm fork offset and new split pivot design. It looks to be exactly what I am looking for that my Anthem doesn't have. They even have a frame bag specifically for it. I've just about sold myself on a 2014 Spearfish but I'm wondering if there are other FS 29ers that I should consider for a good endurance bike. FWIW I can get great deals (50%-30% off) on Giant, Trek and Cannondale but NOT Salsa, figures.

    I know lots of people race HT for these sorts of things but my 51 year old butt and back don't want to suffer through that. I have also considered the fact that Kurt Refsnider rides his Spearfish for all of these events and only rides his Ti HT on gravel grinders or sub 50 mile efforts. I figure he knows more about it than most.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: stevland's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
    fwiw, I've done the coco 250 on my anthem as well and felt it was fine. I gave the AZT 300 a shot last year, also on the anthem and had to pull the plug, but not because of the bike.

    in terms of the tall setup, yeah I agree. almost immediately I flipped the stem and moved it 3 or 4cm closer to the HT. I have it set up the same when I race XC on it and have a few friends that made similar adjustments.

    as far as framebags are concerned, Jpaks make one for the anthem and I am real happy with how it turned out.

    hopefully that helps you as you weigh your options. at the end of the day I think it's all bike fit and riding style over brand, suspension design, etc. I haven't looked too hard, but I don't see a trend in what people are finishing on

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Twowheelchris's Avatar
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    Aug 2013
    Thanks Steve. I'll look up the Jpaks bag.

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