2014 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29 or 2014 Specialized Camber Comp Carbon 29- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    2014 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29 or 2014 Specialized Camber Comp Carbon 29

    Hello,

    I'm trying to determine which of these would be better for riding on fire roads. I live at the foot of Mt Tamalpais and ride two miles from my garage to the starting point.

    I'm 6' - 210 lbs and would be riding mainly for exercise. I just retired and last summer I started riding three or four days a week with family and friends when the weather is nice, so it's more of a leisurely type ride - but with some very steep and loose rocky climbs.

    I was initially leaning towards the 2014 Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29 - but the bike shop is saying the 2014 Camber Comp Carbon might be the better choice for my riding - I want a more capable uphill bike than a downhill bike.

    Which of these bikes would be your choice for my riding and why?

    My old bike is a 1996 Specialized M2 FS Comp that has been passed on to my 12 year old son - he doesn't want a new bike - he loves the old Stumpy.

    Thanks for any replies.

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    Camber.

    <iframe width="640" height="390" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ozgr0f8vs4I" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Your listed terrain would allow a Ti or carbon hard tail with good compliance.

  3. #3
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    Camber. IIRC, on Tam, you pretty much just get to ride fire roads. I sometimes ride China Camp on visits to the area; there, I've been riding my friend's old FSR XC, with 100 or 120 mm of travel. I don't feel under biked on that at all. And in general, less is more when it comes to suspension travel and climbing. You might look at the Epic too - I think if carbon is in your price range, the Epic is too.

    The other riding spot I know of in that area is Tamarancho, which, from what I've heard, might be more fun on a little longer-travel bike. I haven't been there. It would involve a drive, and my friend and I can ride to China Camp from his house.

    So maybe contributing more questions than answers, but there you go.

    Can you demo? Since you've had a bike in the past, have you visited all the spots you're planning to ride on this one?
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Camber.

    Your listed terrain would allow a Ti or carbon hard tail with good compliance.
    Any reason why the Camber would be the better choice?

    I'm just curious why one would be better than the other.

    By the way - I retired with a bad back and somedays it goes out and I can barely walk - that's one of the main reasons I'm looking at full suspension.

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    I'm about three miles from Tamarancho but have not ridden there - but I have looked into a season pass.

    I rode on most of the trails at China Camp back in the early 1960's on my dirt bike before it became a state park, but I haven't been out there since.

    Most of the people I ride with like the ease of hitting Tam, plus the views are nice too. Off of Indian fire road is a nice single track called Windy Gap, or something like that. But I enjoy riding all over Tam the most.

    I have some time to figure this out - I'm pretty sure they both would work.

  6. #6
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    Specialized slackened the geo a little on this Evo version by supplying it with the 120mm Pike fork(110 standard), which can be very plush.
    It will ride less race more relaxed.

  7. #7
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    Ease is nice, but don't limit yourself too much.

    I was thinking about this the other day - I live next to some awesome trails, and I ride there a lot. But some of what I want from MTB is to ride other trails too, especially some of the more epic ones in my state. I'm definitely not going to be riding any of the other spots as much as I ride the ones down the road from me, but traveling from time to time, especially during the nicest part of the season, is worth it.

    Point being, don't get a bike just for riding up fire roads. The Stumpjumper shouldn't really give you a problem with that, though I'd see it as overkill. Think about what you want your overall picture to be. It's not like anyone gives you a prize for getting to the top of a road a minute sooner.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    What is important to me is ease of the steep uphill rocky roads - I take it easy on the downhills. I'm 62 so just getting out and ridding is what is important to me - my family has a history of heart disease and I want to stay healthy.

    My price range is $4,000 and under.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matuchi View Post
    My price range is $4,000 and under.
    I would try for 20% off the Evo now or wait a bit and get it within your price range.
    In either case the brakes need to be swapped for SLX/XT.
    You can do that within the purchase negotiation.

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    You have other options out there, but if Specialized is it for you the Stumpjumper will offer a more comfy ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    I would try for 20% off the Evo now or wait a bit and get it within your price range.
    In either case the brakes need to be swapped for SLX/XT.
    You can do that within the purchase negotiation.
    Which model EVO?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Luis M. View Post
    You have other options out there, but if Specialized is it for you the Stumpjumper will offer a more comfy ride.
    I mainly want something that is really good at uphill climbs - but a comfortable ride is second in line.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matuchi View Post
    Which model EVO?
    The one in the video review. It's the only one at 120 with the Pike.
    If comfort is secondary I can suggest a suggestion outside current thinking.
    I'm riding a Trek Superfly 9.8. It's got full frame compliance you wouldn't believe. Mine got more cushion with the XR1 tires on Wide Lightning wheels. It feels like a 100mm fs and weighs 22lbs. That rear combination keeps tire contact climbing over rocks and roots seated. The light weight makes everything easier. Fun, very easy turning bike.

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    2014 Camber carbon at $3,800 retail.... might be able to get cheaper

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    Quote Originally Posted by rushman3 View Post
    2014 Camber carbon at $3,800 retail.... might be able to get cheaper
    My local bike shop has them for $3,599 at the moment. Every year they do an additional 10 percent off on the 4th of July - I'm hoping I make my decision before then and take advantage of that discount too. I'm really leaning towards the Camber Comp Carbon 29 - but I wanted to get a few opinions from the seasoned riders on here before I pull the trigger.

  16. #16
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    Since you're not competing, I really don't think anything in the 140 mm and under range is going to climb enough better or worse than everything else to matter.

    But if you just have to have Specialized's interpretation of the best possible climber under $4000, I think it's the Epic Comp. It's a little steeper-angled and has the fancy shock. With all that entails.

    Of course, Specialized isn't the only brand out there. I'm having a really good time with my Kona Hei Hei, and they do some longer-travel bikes. Trek's been mentioned. Giant's pretty well-regarded - the Trance and Anthem would fit what you're talking about. Really, almost everyone has full suspension bikes with efficient linkages for $4000 or less these days. Seems like if a bike company can't figure it out for that kind of budget, either they really don't care or there's something wrong with them. Though I haven't liked every FS I've ridden - some don't strike as good a balance between a firm pedaling platform and a smooth ride as others.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  17. #17
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    You feel the Epic Comp would be a better bike than the Camber Comp Carbon?

    It's a little cheaper - but it doesn't have the Carbon frame.

  18. #18
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    My tablet browser is having some trouble with the length of your title. But the post was going to be too long anyway.

    I don't think carbon vs. aluminum is very important on a full-suspension frame with pivots everywhere.

    I don't have saddle time on an Epic. Some of my teammates love them, but it's not a brand I have a line on. With a budget around half of yours, it takes a lot for me to really even consider products from brands that don't give my team a deal.

    I enjoyed the Camber I demoed. If you're really all about climbing and settled on buying something from the Big S, though, I think you should at least check out the bikes they've designed to be their two fastest on the way up - the Epic and the Stumpjumper hardtail.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    My tablet browser is having some trouble with the length of your title. But the post was going to be too long anyway.

    I don't think carbon vs. aluminum is very important on a full-suspension frame with pivots everywhere.

    I don't have saddle time on an Epic. Some of my teammates love them, but it's not a brand I have a line on. With a budget around half of yours, it takes a lot for me to really even consider products from brands that don't give my team a deal.

    I enjoyed the Camber I demoed. If you're really all about climbing and settled on buying something from the Big S, though, I think you should at least check out the bikes they've designed to be their two fastest on the way up - the Epic and the Stumpjumper hardtail.
    I'm not as concerned as going fast uphill as I am the ease of going uphill. I went to my LBS and talked to them about these models - including the Epic, and they are going to get them in Large next week for me to demo.

    I appreciate all your advice and it's all factoring in to my decision.

  20. #20
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    Get a bike with a triple. Put an 11-36 cassette on it. Gearing's going to make a bigger difference than anything else.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  21. #21
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    The bike's weight and especially the weight of the wheels/tires are huge factor in climbing, IMO. I would go with the lightest bike, which is probably the Camber Carbon. Go tubeless which can shave .5 to 1 lb of rotating weight. The triple upfront with the granny gear will help as well. Full suspension for sure to save the back...

  22. #22
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    The LBS is getting a Camber Comp Carbon in large next Tuesday for me to demo. The CCC has two chainrings up front - 36/22, w/ alloy guard and a 10 speed 11-36 cassette - which should be low enough gearing for what I intend to climb. I'll look into tubless too - thanks!

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    Another vote for the Camber. It should be lighter and faster at each price point and is still plenty robust and comfy for fire roads. The stumpjumper is more of a do-it-all bike--it wouldn't be bad for fireroads, but it has extra suspension and tires for rocks, jumps, and in general aggressive terrain, something it sounds like you're not interested in.

    The epic might be faster yet but that's sacrificing comfort for speed, which, with a bad back sounds like something you don't want to do.

    Also, for fireroads, without the bad back I would probably say Crave or Stumpjumper HT. Having recovered from a back injury myself though I think its worth it to go full suspension.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost_03 View Post
    Another vote for the Camber. It should be lighter and faster at each price point and is still plenty robust and comfy for fire roads. The stumpjumper is more of a do-it-all bike--it wouldn't be bad for fireroads, but it has extra suspension and tires for rocks, jumps, and in general aggressive terrain, something it sounds like you're not interested in.

    The epic might be faster yet but that's sacrificing comfort for speed, which, with a bad back sounds like something you don't want to do.

    Also, for fireroads, without the bad back I would probably say Crave or Stumpjumper HT. Having recovered from a back injury myself though I think its worth it to go full suspension.
    Thank you for your insight. My LBS is getting a Camber Comp Carbon in tomorrow for me to demo. The guys at the shop have known me for over ten years and are certain I will like the bike for where and how I ride.

    The bad back comes and goes - but when it flares up I sometimes have to use a cane for a few days.

    I'm really excited about riding this bike.

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    I picked up my 2014 Camber Comp Carbon today. The LBS made the wheels tubeless for free - thank you very much! I took a short ride after I got it home but tomorrow's ride up Mt Tamalpais will give me a much better idea of how well it rides. This may be the last photo of it this clean.


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    It's been awhile now so what do you think of this bike for your needs? I'm looking at the two bikes you were looking at, but may upgrade as you did.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Guns View Post
    It's been awhile now so what do you think of this bike for your needs? I'm looking at the two bikes you were looking at, but may upgrade as you did.
    I really like my 2014 Camber Comp Carbon. I've put 1,000 miles on it since June and could not be happier. It does everything I ask of it and is very comforitble. The only downside was I could of saved $450 if I waited for the end of summer sale - but then I would of missed an entire summer of riding it.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by matuchi View Post
    I really like my 2014 Camber Comp Carbon. I've put 1,000 miles on it since June and could not be happier. It does everything I ask of it and is very comforitble. The only downside was I could of saved $450 if I waited for the end of summer sale - but then I would of missed an entire summer of riding it.
    Good choice the Stumpy would have been good too but overkill for your ride style and that area, and pretty much any bay area riding spots.
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    Quote Originally Posted by matuchi View Post
    I picked up my 2014 Camber Comp Carbon today. The LBS made the wheels tubeless for free - thank you very much! I took a short ride after I got it home but tomorrow's ride up Mt Tamalpais will give me a much better idea of how well it rides. This may be the last photo of it this clean.

    A little "Johnny Come Lately" here, but good choice. I picked up the same bike back in November of 2013. I've done some gravel grinding, some MOAB slick rock single track, along with many miles of rocky Ozark trials and never felt like I needed more bike. Climbs great, handles the techy stuff, flies like a spooked white tail deer on the down hill, and handled every jump I've been brave enough to try, and I'm sure many that I'm not. The only thing I'd suggest is up grade the wheels. I put a set of Mavic Crossmax SLRs on mine and it made a noticeable difference in how the bike handled.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2014 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29 or 2014 Specialized Camber Comp Carbon 29-20140720_092514.jpg  


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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Trails View Post
    A little "Johnny Come Lately" here, but good choice. I picked up the same bike back in November of 2013. I've done some gravel grinding, some MOAB slick rock single track, along with many miles of rocky Ozark trials and never felt like I needed more bike. Climbs great, handles the techy stuff, flies like a spooked white tail deer on the down hill, and handled every jump I've been brave enough to try, and I'm sure many that I'm not. The only thing I'd suggest is up grade the wheels. I put a set of Mavic Crossmax SLRs on mine and it made a noticeable difference in how the bike handled.
    I picked up a nice set of Roval Control Carbon wheels from Craigslist, a Command Post IR from here, I also put on an Easton EC 70 carbon handlebar and did a few other changes. So far I've been very happy with it, but last Friday I noticed my shock lever was not working and there was fluid coming out out it and onto my water cage. I brought it back to my LBS andf they sent the shock back to Fox - I'm waiting to hear if they are going to repair it under warranty.

  31. #31
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    Sounds like some nice upgrades. If you don't hear back from Fox in a timely manner I would be in contact with them. I had to send in a shock that was damage due to my son driving into the garage with the bike still on top of his car. Fox said it would cost too much repair the shock and wanted to know if I wanted to purchase a new one, the problem was they never called to ask me. So what should have only took about 5 days took two and a half weeks.

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    2014 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29 or 2014 Specialized Camber Comp Carbon 29-image.jpg

    Im going to call the LBS today to see if they heard anything. They got the RDA number to send it in. Here's a shot with the new Roval Carbon wheels.

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    Cool. It looks like you changed out your stem as well. I put a 10 110mm stem on mine to try to alleviate the pain in my hands. A side effect of that is that now I'm able to get my front end up a lot higher and can catch more air than before. On the flip side steep down hills are a little more sketching feeling.

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