Results 1 to 25 of 25
  1. #1
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    Choice of xc race bike: Spider 29 vs. Scott Spark 15

    For an XC race bike I'm looking at two bikes: Intense Spider 29 and a Scott Spark 15. I was leaning to the Intense 29. The Scott Spark is a sweet looking rig as well and really light. I've owned four 29ers now, all hard tails or full rigid-no full suspension. My last go-fast xc bike was a Racer X (26"). Any opinions on one or the other for a race bike? How are those of you racing the 29 Spider liking it?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Be@t's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    86
    I ride a Spider 29 and I like it alot. It's a perfect marathon and trailbike, but it isn't a rocket. To heavy and to flexy.

    I bet, the Scott Spark is the faster bike, because it's easy 2-4 lbs lighter. For XC/CC racing you don't need 29inch wheels. You'll need the lighter (smaller) version. You'll need the lightest bike you can and I don't believe that it's possible to build a Spider29 as light as a Spark26.

    only my personal opinion.

  3. #3
    Lord of the Chain Rings
    Reputation: orastreet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    108
    Seems like you are comparing apples to oranges. Do you want a 29r or not? Intense is not the only one making a FS 29r. Personally, I'm not a big fan of 29rs, but why not a Spider FRO? I just bought a 5.5 FRO and race it and have done quite well. At 26 lbs and 5.5 inches of travel, you can't go wrong! The Spark is also a great bike - but there is nothing like owning an Intense, and there is no "entry level" Intense like there is with a Scott. Every Intense is primo.
    Uzzi

  4. #4
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    thankf for the good info...

    I wouldn't have thought the Spider would be too flexy-never had the chance to ride one yet though. Part of my thinking is that all the 29 perks: rolling over stuff, stability and all of the other +'s etc would be super on an efficient short-travel race bike. I do think the 26 would be nicer for acceleration and I think that's a big deal in xc racing. The 29 may actually be a disadvantage because when you are behind someone you have to ride THEIR pace. I've noticed on my 29 rides I prefer to be out front because of the way the bike rolls compared to my 26 buddies. Or in other words the 29 likes to go it's pace and could actually be more tiring if you have to start a climb slower because of traffic.

    So you may be right simply due to weight. You think a ~#25-26 medium Spider is realistic with XT?

  5. #5
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    true that; no entry-level Intense.

    Quote Originally Posted by orastreet
    Seems like you are comparing apples to oranges. Do you want a 29r or not? Intense is not the only one making a FS 29r. Personally, I'm not a big fan of 29rs, but why not a Spider FRO? I just bought a 5.5 FRO and race it and have done quite well. At 26 lbs and 5.5 inches of travel, you can't go wrong! The Spark is also a great bike - but there is nothing like owning an Intense, and there is no "entry level" Intense like there is with a Scott. Every Intense is primo.

    I think I want a 29 race bike. I've owned three GF hardtail 29ers, and this year a Bianchi Rita(sweet bike! ). I could do a Niner but I dig that the Intense is a small US made bike. Most responses from other riders is that the Spider would be a great race bike but then someone rightly pointed out the weight and acceleration trade off-this is a race bike after all.

    I bet the 5.5 is sweet! I didn't know the Spider came in a FRO version. The Scott I would get is pretty stinkin' nice (Spark 15) but doesn't push some of the cool-buttons that the Intense does for me.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Be@t's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    86
    Quote Originally Posted by c-record
    You think a ~#25-26 medium Spider is realistic with XT?
    to be honest: no, I'don't believe it.

    My Spider29 in Large is exactly 30lbs. With Bontrager Race-Light Wheels, RS Reba, Truvativ Stylo, SRAM X.O., AVID Juicy Carbon, RF-Seatpost, Thompson-Stem. It would be a real challange to save 4-5 lbs.....


  7. #7
    Lord of the Chain Rings
    Reputation: orastreet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    108
    I hear a lot of talk about Intense's flexy rear ends. Whenever you have multiple pivots, you will have some flex. The only solution is to get a hard tail. The benefits of the a VPP or 4-bar outweigh any flex. I noticed it on my first Intense, but it was never an issue, and should not be a deal breaker. Also, the VPP suspension is far superior in performance, if you are thinking 29r, go with Intense for sure.

    The downside of the 29r craze is the weight. You won't accelerate as fast, but will maintain momentum. Any infatuation with the 29r died when I was test riding a Gary Fisher and went to make my first turn on the trail. It was like wrestling an alligator. Those big wheels create significantly increased gyroscopic forces, nice for momentum, bad for everything else. There is nothing I can not do on a 26r that I could do on a 29r, but that is just my opinion. 26rs are lighter, faster and WAY easier to get parts for, which are things I look for in a bike. Here's mine. 26 lbs large.

    Uzzi

  8. #8
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    I didn't like Fisher handling either.

    i agree, I didn't like the Fisher handling either, waay too slow. I had to see past that to recognize some of the other virtues of the 29.

    I've been on a Titus Racer X and agree that full-sus is the way to go. It sounds like here though that even though Intense rocks, a 29 wouldn't be the choice as an XC race weapon.

    Sweet looking ride though!

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: iRider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    1,564
    Quote Originally Posted by c-record
    i agree, I didn't like the Fisher handling either, waay too slow. I had to see past that to recognize some of the other virtues of the 29.

    I've been on a Titus Racer X and agree that full-sus is the way to go. It sounds like here though that even though Intense rocks, a 29 wouldn't be the choice as an XC race weapon.

    Sweet looking ride though!
    Just curious: what is wrong with the Racer X? Why are you looking for a new bike?
    Everybody that I know that owns one just loves the Racer X for XC racing

  10. #10
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    I have a habit...

    and the means(still a lot cheaper than many other hobbies). It's better for you than drugs or drinking and cheaper, I'm told, than therapy. I usually get a couple new bikes or so every year. Dug the Racer. Always liked Intense. So would like to go there.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: iRider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    1,564
    Quote Originally Posted by c-record
    and the means(still a lot cheaper than many other hobbies). It's better for you than drugs or drinking and cheaper, I'm told, than therapy. I usually get a couple new bikes or so every year. Dug the Racer. Always liked Intense. So would like to go there.
    I see.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    10

    Just built up my Spider 29

    I just built up my new Spider 29 bike. I also have a Dos Niner which I love. It's hard to even think about going back to a 26 inch bike once you been riding a 29er for awhile.

    I think the REAL question of whether or not a 29 inch bike would be good for racing depends upon where you actually race. I just came from the last race of the Arkansas series and I would dare say that probably more than 75% of the racers were on 29ers. They of course do ALOT of climbing...not near as much of the crazy little tight turns that make up so much of our trails around Dallas area. The momentum of the 29er wheels give them plenty of strength in their climbing ability, and I honestly believe there was just as many 29 inch winners at the end of that race as there were 26ers.

    Living in TX, 29ers are still trying to catch on. Nearly every shop I go into around Dallas, it seems like so few of the employees really ride 29ers or can carry on a half way intelligent conversation about them. You know how it is....if it's not a Trek or a Specialized bike the shop guys don't know too much else (sorry everyone that works in the shops around Dallas...you guys really should read more magazine reviews and ride more brands of bikes).

    For what it's worth...my new Intense Spyder 29er feels JUST as quick turning as any 26 inch bike I've ever owned (including an Intense 5.5 FRO). I'm very pleased with my purchase and I hope to be an Intense fan for a long time.

    BTW...when is that 5.5 29er coming out? Anyone heard whether FOX will release a longer travel (>100mm) 29er fork within the next year?

  13. #13
    Ole
    Ole is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    889

    Spider FRO?

    How 'bout the Spider FRO for racing? I just built up a Large Red to 8.83kg (19.5lbs) with disc brakes, 100 fork and NoTubes Crow tires. A new wheelset and pedals will drop another 130g, and I'm at 8.7kg sharp (19.2lbs). The races I do are fairly technical with lots of roots etc, and also quite a bit of climbing. I can't imagine how a 3-4-5 pound heavier 29er will be faster on those courses.


    Ole.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Be@t's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    86
    I don't believe your figures, but I believe your statement. ;-)

  15. #15
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    In the Rockies...

    Quote Originally Posted by luv2biketx
    I just built up my new Spider 29 bike. I also have a Dos Niner which I love. It's hard to even think about going back to a 26 inch bike once you been riding a 29er for awhile.

    I think the REAL question of whether or not a 29 inch bike would be good for racing depends upon where you actually race. I just came from the last race of the Arkansas series and I would dare say that probably more than 75% of the racers were on 29ers. They of course do ALOT of climbing...not near as much of the crazy little tight turns that make up so much of our trails around Dallas area. The momentum of the 29er wheels give them plenty of strength in their climbing ability, and I honestly believe there was just as many 29 inch winners at the end of that race as there were 26ers.

    Living in TX, 29ers are still trying to catch on. Nearly every shop I go into around Dallas, it seems like so few of the employees really ride 29ers or can carry on a half way intelligent conversation about them. You know how it is....if it's not a Trek or a Specialized bike the shop guys don't know too much else (sorry everyone that works in the shops around Dallas...you guys really should read more magazine reviews and ride more brands of bikes).

    For what it's worth...my new Intense Spyder 29er feels JUST as quick turning as any 26 inch bike I've ever owned (including an Intense 5.5 FRO). I'm very pleased with my purchase and I hope to be an Intense fan for a long time.

    BTW...when is that 5.5 29er coming out? Anyone heard whether FOX will release a longer travel (>100mm) 29er fork within the next year?
    That's a good point about the regional aspect of 29ers. I notice a lot of 29ers in Arizona. Our races in Utah/Idaho often have a lot of climbing. I love my 29ers when I'm in the front of our group rides but I don't like that when you can't ride your pace you end up working harder. Being behind traffic means the momentum advantage is canceled somewhat as I am always on my brakes behind 26er guys and then I hit the climbs slower than I would have otherwise.

  16. #16
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    I think I agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ole
    How 'bout the Spider FRO for racing? I just built up a Large Red to 8.83kg (19.5lbs) with disc brakes, 100 fork and NoTubes Crow tires. A new wheelset and pedals will drop another 130g, and I'm at 8.7kg sharp (19.2lbs). The races I do are fairly technical with lots of roots etc, and also quite a bit of climbing. I can't imagine how a 3-4-5 pound heavier 29er will be faster on those courses.


    Ole.
    It looks like the weight may win out for me as a race bike. I think the Spark 15 or 10 will be ordered soon.

    Thanks for the help & input!

  17. #17
    Ole
    Ole is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    889
    Quote Originally Posted by Be@t
    I don't believe your figures, but I believe your statement. ;-)
    My figures are real, measured on a Alpine Digital scale.


    I've built it up with Extralite-components wherever possible, and some other light components elsewhere, like Becker Carbon 64g seat (also known as Tune Concorde), Egg Beaters 4Ti, KMC X10SL chain, Pace RC39 fork etc.


    Ole.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    300
    Quote Originally Posted by Ole
    How 'bout the Spider FRO for racing? I just built up a Large Red to 8.83kg (19.5lbs) with disc brakes, 100 fork and NoTubes Crow tires. A new wheelset and pedals will drop another 130g, and I'm at 8.7kg sharp (19.2lbs). The races I do are fairly technical with lots of roots etc, and also quite a bit of climbing. I can't imagine how a 3-4-5 pound heavier 29er will be faster on those courses.


    Ole.
    Hi there,
    Would you post some pic's of your bike? I'd love to see some of the racy Intense red. Cheers

  19. #19
    Ole
    Ole is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    889

    Spark

    Quote Originally Posted by c-record
    It looks like the weight may win out for me as a race bike. I think the Spark 15 or 10 will be ordered soon.

    Thanks for the help & input!

    Have you tried the Spark? Make sure you try both a Spider and a Spark before you buy, the Spider might weigh a pound more, but it's a lot more snappy when you put the power down, and the suspension also glides over roots better than some bikes with an inch more travel. I went from a 2kg frame with 80 travel and horst link, and the Spider is just faster in any condition. And with the VPP, I don't have to fuss with the lockout on the rear shock unless I plan to ride longer stretches on tarmac. During climbing and sprinting I just leave it open for better traction.


    Ole.

  20. #20
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    Not yet.

    Have not yet ridden either the Spark 10 or a Spider FRO. I've liked other Scotts (love my Ransom) even though that is meaningless here. I was kind of thinking 29er Spider or Spark (no solid reason for that though). Have heard good things about both bikes and I'm thinking I may race a Spark and still get a 29 Spider. This does open up other ideas though if my Intense isn't a race bike I may look at Niner as well.

  21. #21
    Barnett Certified
    Reputation: BMXspears's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    75
    Quote Originally Posted by luv2biketx

    I think the REAL question of whether or not a 29 inch bike would be good for racing depends upon where you actually race. I just came from the last race of the Arkansas series and I would dare say that probably more than 75% of the racers were on 29ers. They of course do ALOT of climbing...not near as much of the crazy little tight turns that make up so much of our trails around Dallas area. The momentum of the 29er wheels give them plenty of strength in their climbing ability, and I honestly believe there was just as many 29 inch winners at the end of that race as there were 26ers.

    Living in TX, 29ers are still trying to catch on. Nearly every shop I go into around Dallas, it seems like so few of the employees really ride 29ers or can carry on a half way intelligent conversation about them. You know how it is....if it's not a Trek or a Specialized bike the shop guys don't know too much else (sorry everyone that works in the shops around Dallas...you guys really should read more magazine reviews and ride more brands of bikes).
    I disagree with your statement about climbing and 29ers. 29 wheels do maintain their momentum better because of their weight, but for long climbs, I'd rather have a bike with 2lb lighter wheels which can be accelerated easier. On flat ground, I would say that the 29er may have an advantage, but when the trail turns up, the lighter bike wins.

    As for the shop guys and magazine reviews. This is a thread about a bike for racing. The dudes that do the reviews are not racers and they never give bad reviews. In my opinion, besides velonews, there isn't really an mtb magazine that caters to XC racing.

    I just got a spark 10 frame built up yesterday and today will the the first off road ride.

    I would never purchase a 29er. Everyone of them I've ridden felt heavy as hell (slow to get going), even a 22lb orbea alma.

    You should definitely ride both bikes and not listen to internet forum opinions.

  22. #22
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    I actually like opinions...

    I find it interesting to hear others thoughts and reasons for their decisions. Most people have valid experience and their decisions probably work well for them-despite a limited reference for comparison.

    I'm familiar with 29ers and have owned 5 (GT, Fishers, Bianchi). I do think the lighter bike is probably a bigger benefit when it comes to racing though. As for a trail bike, my biases shift.

    I'm stoked to see you Spark-post a pic please. I think a Spark is in my future as well as a full-sus 29er next year.

  23. #23
    Barnett Certified
    Reputation: BMXspears's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    75
    Quote Originally Posted by c-record
    I find it interesting to hear others thoughts and reasons for their decisions. Most people have valid experience and their decisions probably work well for them-despite a limited reference for comparison.

    I'm familiar with 29ers and have owned 5 (GT, Fishers, Bianchi). I do think the lighter bike is probably a bigger benefit when it comes to racing though. As for a trail bike, my biases shift.

    I'm stoked to see you Spark-post a pic please. I think a Spark is in my future as well as a full-sus 29er next year.



    This one's just above 22 with the temporary heavy thomson stem, bottle cage, and computer.

  24. #24
    bike junkie
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    156

    thanks.

    Yes, that will do. Great looking bike!

  25. #25
    Now broadcasting from CO
    Reputation: PAmtbiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    1,221
    I see no disadvantage to the Spider 29 for XC race... you could easily build it just under 25lbs if you want to spend that kind of money... furthermore all of the guys around here (East PA) that I have talked to that ride one absolutely love it and think it is really fast and accelerates really quickly for a 29er. Most of that acceleration depends on the wheelset you put on it, so if you put a light wheelset on it (Crossmax29, Chris King/Stans Arch, Flow, etc) you can get a bike that accelerates very well, climbs well, and will rip like a 29er should... but if your heart is set on the Spark get it... it's a really sexy bike...
    Brought to you by rocks.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •