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  1. #1
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    '10 Enduro first ride impressions, long-ish

    Howdy. I've never owned a Specialized bike before, but was intrigued by the new Enduro. Ended up picking up a Comp model with command post locally on Sunday. With the post and 8.3% sales tax, I was out the door for $2,900. Pretty decent deal.

    About me: I'm 41, 6'2", 185 pounds. I ride technical, rocky, AZ gnar. I own a 120mm travel 29er that I use for more XC-type stuff. The 26-inch bike is for gnarlier stuff, but I still pedal up and bomb down. In the recent past, I've had several very nice 26ers, including a Yeti 575 and, most recently, a built Turner Six-Pack.

    I got the bike prepped and dialed in on Monday while we had an unusually severe rainstorm here in the desert. The Command Post is a little ticky-tacky to get fully functioning, but I finally got it. I was amazed at how easily the Spec. tires popped on ghetto tubeless using pipe tape and Stan's goop/valves. The suspension was easy to get dialed and the brakes bedded in well.

    The bike is quite attractive and the L fits me perfectly. I looked at the red version, but didn't like it anywhere near as much in person as I did online.

    For today's shakedown, I rode up Mormon and down National trail at South Mountain. For those who know AZ trails, this is a good technical run with plenty of climbing, drops, chutes, high-speed chop, a bit of everything.

    First thing I noticed was how light the bike is and how nicely it pedals. Much more efficient than my 34-pound Turner. Everything seemed to work together. The front of the bike is lighter than I'm used to. I don't like travel adjust, but the light front on this bike with a 160mm fork demands a specific technique on the steep, technical ups.

    The frame is very stiff laterally, but still seems springy off of drops and small jumps. I like the short stays, very easy to manual. The bottom bracket does seem a little lower than I'm used to and I pedal struck on stuff I generally don't. I'm sure I'll adopt better technique.

    The suspension was very nice on high-speed chop, as plush as you could expect air to be. Very controlled, easy to ride. On bigger hits, I liked the front more than the rear, which felt a little wooden deep into its travel. I've got some more playing to do in that regard.

    Handling was fine, neutral. In certain spots, the bike felt quicker than its head angle would lead you to believe. Much of that is likely my technique and body positioning on a new bike. The brakes felt a little grabby, but I'm used to Hopes (in my opinion, the finest brakes available). The levers were also too far away from the bars, which I didn't notice until I started going down. Also didn't realize the Avids had a tool-less lever adjust.

    Overall, it's a beautiful, well-engineered bike. First off-the-floor, non-boutique, complete build I've bought in years and I'm pleased. Only weirdness is that cable batch running under the bottom bracket. Not too stoked on that, but we'll see how it works out. Might need some wider bars. The Eskars seemed OK, not great. Probably need a higher volume tire up front, but we'll see.

    Heading back out tomorrow. Hope folks on the fence find this useful. Happy to answer any questions that I can. Post-ride pics:






  2. #2
    JCL
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    Very nice.

    Don't worry about the under the BB cable routing. It's by far the best location as there is only rotation of the frame at that point, not compression to cause the cables/hoses to bow etc.
    It also protects the DT from impacts.

  3. #3
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    Hey Thanks for the writeup and sexy bike! I am considering getting an '10 frame and swapping components over.. Just out of curiosity [and kind of OT], which Hope Brakes should I look into? Id love to get my hands on a set of older M6's, but they're hard to find so far.
    Cheers, enjoy the bike!
    Erik

  4. #4
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    If the homers only new what their missing , ------I new you would love the Specialized Enduro, I am happy you finaly got a complete designed bike .

    You will be amazed when you really start getting it set up how it keeps getting better and better .

    You can get one off build up bikes to work well also --------------it just takes along time and alot of suspension valving and testing to get one close .

    Hope I will see you out at natty soon and we will go up natty together

  5. #5
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    I had several sets of slightly older Mono M4s. They don't have some of the gee-whiz features like pad adjust or tool-free lever adjust. What they do have is great power and the best modulation I've ever seen.

  6. #6
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    Thanks, Kel. It's hard to beat the spec for the money when buying a complete bike from a major manufacturer. Piecing a bike together is fun, but it's not cheap.

    I was planning on being back out there today, but need to get some new tires on my truck first. Sure we'll see you out there soon.

  7. #7
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    Nice

    Yeah, South Mountain would be killer on the 2010 Enduro! A place that has tech DH that you have to pedal to get. That is what the bike is made for. I seem to remember a little trail off of the "top" that starts by a sign and drops to the backside. Full of tight little rocky chutes, good stuff.


    Last time I was there we got caught in a gnarly hail storm and I still have scars from a cati encouter.

    If you know Kelstr have him (or yourself) do an air sleeve service on the shock asap. In my experience they tend to come a little dry from Fox and will heat up quickly until you give them the slick honey love. I did mine after only 5 hrs of ride time and it has felt like a coil spring ever since! Smooooooth.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCL
    Very nice.

    Don't worry about the under the BB cable routing. It's by far the best location as there is only rotation of the frame at that point, not compression to cause the cables/hoses to bow etc.
    It also protects the DT from impacts.

    I agree on that one.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the write-up. Good perspective.

    As for the front end, how high are the bars compared to your RFX?
    Are they really mid-rise bars or are they 2" risers?
    How long is the stem?

    Seems like the trend is towards low-rise bars to keep the front end tight.

  10. #10
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    Hey Blatant, I forget to tell you to be careful with those 2.3 Eskar tires out at somo , --they rip the sidewalls out real easy ,--------I loved that tire and the 2.3 Chunder control's tires but I could not keep them alive at somo, I had to run the 2.5 Chunder SX DH tires,
    I run them tubeless of course and run 22 to 25 psi and they have been really tough and work great at somo,-------------they weigh 1500 lbs tho ----

  11. #11
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    I ran mid-rise Easton bars with a Thomson X4 50mm stem on my Turner. I no longer have the bike to compare, but the bar heights don't "feel" any different.

    Kel: Yeah, I imagined the tires wouldn't hold up out there. I was impressed with how easily they popped on ghetto. I'll just run 'em til they rip and go from there.

  12. #12
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    Hey Blatant, give the Purgatory 2.4 GRID UST tires a look for up front. I am running one of those with a GRID Eskar 2.3 out back on my 575 here in AZ and couldn't be happier. I know the spec site doesn't show the Purgatory in that size as a GRID version, but DNA has them, that's where I got mine. Best front tire EVER.

  13. #13
    EDR
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    Nice bike, glad you're happy with your decision.

    About tires. I had the Chunder controls 2bliss and they don't hold up to Somo, however I am now running a 2.3 Eskar Armadillo 2bliss version and the sidewall is much better. Holding up fine so far.

  14. #14
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    Jamie try that Purgatory Grid UST!!! It's all the Chunder was + more! Seriously I wish Specialized would make the Chunder 2.3 in a UST format, but I can live and be very happy with the Purg...it's only 913g on my digi scale.

  15. #15
    EDR
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    Quote Originally Posted by eyescream
    Jamie try that Purgatory Grid UST!!! It's all the Chunder was + more! Seriously I wish Specialized would make the Chunder 2.3 in a UST format, but I can live and be very happy with the Purg...it's only 913g on my digi scale.
    I'll check it out. The Eskar is fine for the rear but if I have one complaint (or two) so far it's the the knobs are smallish and at 2.3, it's seems lower volume than the 2.2 Chunder control. I almost went with a Chunder SX but wasn't 100% sure on running it tubeless. I like to keep my tires ust just for ease of use.

    Blatant (and Eric) I am hoping for a run up Natty Friday morning if you guys are interested. It's just wishful thinking at the moment.

  16. #16
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    I'll be out Thursday and Friday. Not sure on times, as I'm a pansy about the cold weather. Yes, when you get used to AZ weather, 50 degrees is freezing!!

  17. #17
    EDR
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blatant
    I'll be out Thursday and Friday. Not sure on times, as I'm a pansy about the cold weather. Yes, when you get used to AZ weather, 50 degrees is freezing!!
    I'm shooting for 9-10am friday. My buddy has a '07 Enduro SL, I'm sure he'd love to compare.

    Christmas shopping is calling though so we'll see.

  18. #18
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    Really nice bike and write up. I'm so curious about them. I went to my LBS last week to see if they had one on the floor but they did not.
    "If you give up your dream, you die."
    Twitter - KIKat1029

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by eatdrinkride
    I'll check it out. The Eskar is fine for the rear but if I have one complaint (or two) so far it's the the knobs are smallish and at 2.3, it's seems lower volume than the 2.2 Chunder control. I almost went with a Chunder SX but wasn't 100% sure on running it tubeless. I like to keep my tires ust just for ease of use.

    Blatant (and Eric) I am hoping for a run up Natty Friday morning if you guys are interested. It's just wishful thinking at the moment.
    I run everything UST even if they are not -----doesen't matter to me .
    I run the 2.5 Chunder SX tubeless ------------its actually a 2.7 and its really tall , and I just love the for my ft tire , you can run it super low pressure because it high volume and the thing just rolls over everthing .

    The Chunder coltrol and the Eskar control or S Works just rip and wont hold up to somo for me at all .

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blatant
    I'll be out Thursday and Friday. Not sure on times, as I'm a pansy about the cold weather. Yes, when you get used to AZ weather, 50 degrees is freezing!!
    Im sitting in the house right now and I am riding today also -------I hope -----------I have all my gear on and the house is 75 degrees and I am freeezzzzzing sitting here and I can't go out side and put my bike in the truck because its way to cold ---------I just hate this time of year

    Maybe I will see you there if it warms up to at least 70 ---------this just sucks

  21. #21
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    Lots of good information and feedback here!

    Quote Originally Posted by kelstr
    I run everything UST even if they are not
    FWIW, UST is a standard for a bead/rim interface. Tubeless is how you are running them, unless your rims meet UST specifications and the tires do as well.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by CharacterZero
    Lots of good information and feedback here!


    FWIW, UST is a standard for a bead/rim interface. Tubeless is how you are running them, unless your rims meet UST specifications and the tires do as well.
    Yes I understand this , but most guys wont run a tire tubless unless it states UST on the tire .-----------and its so funny because generally their rim is not UST anyway .

    I have had no problems running many good brand tires ( no the 15 dollars tires ) but good brand tires on many different rims all tubless with my method and had no problems ,

    So I call all my set ups UST , because they all work and do not fail

    My rims are all UST , and the Specialized tires have a really good bead set up on their tires and work well on non UST rims

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelstr
    My rims are all UST , and the Specialized tires have a really good bead set up on their tires and work well on non UST rims
    Did you mean to say they work well ON UST rims?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by eatdrinkride
    Did you mean to say they work well ON UST rims?
    I also have several rims as back ups that I use every once in a while that are non UST , and the non UST Specialized tires bead right up and work fine as tubeless on those , I have no troubble with many different tubeless set ups, with or without the so called UST designation.

    I have had guys bring me alot of troubble childs tho , and everyone of those was with cheep rims ( or 29er rims ------don't get me started on thoes )---and cheep and or used worn out tires.

    You would not believe the guys trying to run tubeless on old crap rims and using old used worn out tires , I just don't get it

  25. #25
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    Man, it's cold out there. In the low 40s when I left my house at about 10 a.m. Brrrrr.

    Ended up going out to PMP as it's so close to home. From 40th St., rode 8 to 8a, up onto 1A around to the 220 loops then back to the truck.

    This loop features a lot of climbing. Not the extended smooth sort of climbing. Torturous, technical, steep climbing. It's rocky, as in you don't see any actual dirt for miles at a time. The downs are fast and rocky, twisty/turny and very difficult to maintain momentum due to all the rocks. I call it "bike surfing."

    The Enduro is definitely one of the better-climbing bikes I've had. I generally gear my bikes 34-22 in front with a 34-tooth cassette. The Spesh has a 36-tooth "big" ring. Even so, I found myself cleaning climbing I generally struggle with without even dropping down into the granny. The front end is very light, so you really need to get on the point of the saddle.

    Not quite there on the downs yet, at least compared to the Turner. The Six-Pack was point and shoot, get your weight over the rear tire and go. The Enduro appears to need more input and different body weighting. We'll get where we need to be, just going to take some technique-refining.

    I don't like the Eskar as a front tire. Seems OK on the rear, but the front begs for bigger and more volume and more traction. A heavier front tire may also help keep the front down. Wider bars seem to be necessary, too. I've never used a chain roller before. I suppose it might create a bit of additional drag on the drivetrain, but, man, it sure does keep things quiet. This bike is almost like riding a single speed in the noise department. I really like that.

    So far, pretty pleased with my purchase.

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