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  1. #1
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    Epic Brain Service Time? How many weeks?

    Hey folks:
    Brought my 2011 Epic to my LBS for suspension overhaul and tune. They sent the brain back to Specialized for servicing. It took about 2 1/2 weeks for the turnaround. But Specialized screwed it up, and the LBS had to send it back. It's 3 1/2 weeks now. No brain. No bike. No fun. My LBS gave me a loaner for one weekend but, c'mon Specialized!

    How long is this stuff supposed to take? Why would Specialized expect folks to buy a bike that will be out of service for 1 month out of the year? As I think about replacing the Epic down the road, why would I buy another MTB from Specialized that needs factory servicing?

    Just wondering about other people's experiences with Specialized here.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    it can be one week to 3 weeks,that's what I've heard beacause I've never kept a Brain equipped bike long enough to the point of having the system overhauled. My 2013 Stumpy FSR 29's Brain was just barely beginning to show signs of service needed wich after 2 years was due,but I've sold it 2 weeks ago.
    That is the price to pay if you want the Brain,sorry !
    '15 Tarmac Sworks
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  3. #3
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    Could be worse. I had a 2011 Epic that spent 2 months out of the year I owned it out of commission because the Brain shock had to be sent back twice! As soon as it was back together the second time it got sold. I can't deal with a 4 week turn around on a shock overhaul. Thankfully Specialized covered the cost of the second overhaul because the shock locked up on me after only 4 weeks of riding after the first overhaul.

    It was a great bike but the maintenance ruined it for me. The local shop racers with Epics keep a spare Brain shock on hand for this reason.

  4. #4
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    Thanks, Devastazione and keifla123. Good to hear.

    I guess my experience isn't out of the ordinary, and I have less reason to complain than others. But your comments really do show that it is important to consider this maintenance cost and down time in deciding whether to buy a bike with a Brain. I didn't think about this when I bought the Epic. I am not a competitive rider and I don't want to buy a spare Brain shock. I will definitely think about this when it comes time to replace my Epic.

  5. #5
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    ...PLAN AHEAD...

    Send it in December it's a S L O W time for the service dept at specialized and i'm doing Road / Cyclocross stuff at that time anyway.

    I have had a 48h turnaround on both the brain shock and fork if you do it right and that's having your shop contact specialized service dept beforehand so it's in the Q then sending it fed ex and having it sent back via fed ex.

    easy peasy

    Come on people if you have to whine about normal maintenance on a brain equipped bike then I suggest you look at something else such as a ridged single speed bike if maintaining a bike causes you so much grief.

  6. #6
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    I sent both the rear brain shock and the Fox fork on my Stumpjumper in January. It took just over two weeks with shipping in both directions. Total for both was just under $300. I called my LBS and they stated that they were going to send them to Fox anyway so I just pulled them and sent them off myself. I rode my hardtail Stumpjumper Comp while the FSR was down. I will likely pull them both next January and do it all over again.
    '13 Stumpjumper FSR Elite
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  7. #7
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    My rear brain service and front brain upgrade took 9 days total from drop off to pick up for my 2011 Epic. I did it in late winter. I don't have an epic anymore but I rally liked the brain setup and would buy one again. I also regularly would drop beer off at my LBS, maybe that helped too.

  8. #8
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    My Stumpy brain is 5 years old and has never been serviced other that to add bath lube. Still works great. Problem solved.
    Sometimes, you need to go fast enough that the trail is a blur to find clarity. -- Wild Bill

  9. #9
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    I asked for regular service (annoying strange suction noise, but the shock worked fine anyway). Lbs contacted country dealer, and we got a rebuilt shock within weeks. We sent in the old shock after we got the new one.

    The rebuilt shock came from a German fox service center and has a "certificate" signed by the mechanic who built it! Nice.


    .

  10. #10
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    Thanks. All good ideas. Just trying to gauge others' experiences

    For HAL 9000--I'm not trying to whine (too much) about routine maintenance, though I have found Specialized frustrating. Tomorrow will be 4 weeks and the Brain shock is still at Specialized, though for the second time. I really like my LBS. They did a good job in testing it when it came back the first time.

    I'll wait longer before sending it in next time and try to grease it so it goes faster.

  11. #11
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    OP...

    What was the issue when the shop "tested" the shock upon the original return??

    I know the big "S" had an unusually long backlog of several weeks (was either late '13 or early on last year). From what I understand they have since brought in and trained additional technicians to avoid this type of extended backlog. They also send a 2 day call tag (shipping label) to the east coast dealers, 2 days out 2 days back.

    My last experience from CT was 9 days from outgoing shipment to return, that was earlier this month.
    Considering your in CA (at least according to your profile) This sounds a bit fishy to me.
    Unless there was a small part that was holding up the service,...I'm thinking your not getting the whole story
    feelin good is good enough

  12. #12
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    Thanks, mtbmatty. The issue when the shop tested the shock was that it didn't operate smoothly. It was described to me as sort of sticky. My LBS also said that about a week or 2 after they sent my shock back, they had another Epic brain shock that had to be returned to Specialized for re-servicing. My LBS said that S may have held onto my shock longer than usual to try to figure out why the first servicing was deficient.

    The good news is that I now have the bike back, and it works really well. It was in the shop a total of 4 1/2 weeks. I'm just glad to get it back.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tambike2 View Post

    For HAL 9000--I'm not trying to whine (too much) about routine maintenance, though I have found Specialized frustrating.
    Yes sometimes I have to step back into reality and realize that most folks don't have a quiver of bikes so that when their one and only ride is out of service they are outta luck also.

    nevertheless planning ahead for maintenance is well worth it and if you only have one rig plan a time Xmas holidays, Vacation etc...when you know that you will be off the bike.

    Specialized warrantied two World Cup "solo air" forks for us when it was found out that the crown and cartridge were defective after having them serviced twice in 90 days for air leakage issues.

    If you have issues they will eventually fix it

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