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  1. #1
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    Typical newb thread but I need help

    Hello all, I have been riding for a few years on my Cannondale F5 and I'm tired of breaking it. Its a hardtail from 2007, need I say more.

    I ride in VA where it is not extremely hilly but there are plenty of mello inclines and declines. I like to jump but nothing extreme. I am interested in racing in the future. I ride MX and have for a long time. I am looking for a solid workout, speed, and durability.

    I have been riding a friends Epic and while the bike is very fast, I've already broken two spokes on that but I feel that came from poor maintenance. I also am not a fan of the very steep head angle.

    So that brings me to the Stumpjumper ST. My issue is that the comp version does not offer a 27.5 version. So I can go with the basic ST or I could go for the Standard Stumpjumper. I'm concerned the extra travel will be unnecessary for my area but I want the better components.

    Please help me!

  2. #2
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    Get the one with better components. If you really want a shorter travel you can convert by buying a new yoke and shock. The rest of the frame is the same.

  3. #3
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    Components are easily replaced later, or they wear out and you need to replace them anyway.

    Buy a bike for the frame and geometry, you can't change that. I would take a look at other brands that aren't specialized, there's a ton of good stuff out there now, for less cash.

  4. #4
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    I appreciate you allís input. I guess a lot of my question is a need for recommendation on recommended geometry and travel for my situation. Iíve tried to read and research as much as I can and I see some differences but Iím really not sure which way to go.

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    You need to go demo some bikes----there is no substitute and it is fun to do so----and since you are new try a few different travel and geo's-----I suspect you need a short travel 29er but only you can tell. Then buy the best you can afford as upgrading is expensive.

    If the short travel 29er is right for you there are many out these and the differences are small these days--YT Jeffsy, Intense Primer, Stumpjumper, Trek Fuel--and of course there are the expensive set----Yeti, Pivot etc

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by pctloper View Post
    You need to go demo some bikes----there is no substitute and it is fun to do so----and since you are new try a few different travel and geo's-----I suspect you need a short travel 29er but only you can tell. Then buy the best you can afford as upgrading is expensive.

    If the short travel 29er is right for you there are many out these and the differences are small these days--YT Jeffsy, Intense Primer, Stumpjumper, Trek Fuel--and of course there are the expensive set----Yeti, Pivot etc
    Thanks for your rec. I have tried to demo what I could but the LBS situation around me isn't really strong. I have tried a 27.5 ST Stump and a few Giants. That's about all I can find to ride. I have been riding my buddy's Epic and that's about it.

    I was hoping to stay around 3k as a max for my new bike purchase but in order to get the mid level Specialized it looks like it steps from the base model up to the carbon model at 4300 or so, if I want to get a 27.5. They have a 29er comp ST version and its around 2800 but I really was hoping to stick with a 27.5.

    I'm going to look at those others.

    I have also thought about getting the base model and soon after upgrading the suspension but unless I'm missing something I don't see a lot of forks for a 27.5 at 130mm of travel.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansnxtweek View Post
    I appreciate you allís input. I guess a lot of my question is a need for recommendation on recommended geometry and travel for my situation. Iíve tried to read and research as much as I can and I see some differences but Iím really not sure which way to go.
    Where I live in VA a FS bike with 150mm travel is ideal for me! With that being said there are people riding bikes with more travel and people riding hard tails and ridged bikes on the same trails. We have a pretty wide range of terrain in our state.

    Best bet is to demo bikes or rent them if you need to. There is such a huge range of mountain bikes between cross country and downhill it's impossible to recommend a bike for someone.

    I feel like it's hard to go wrong with a bike in the 120-140mm suspension range whether it's hard tail or full suspension. It would also be the next step up from an XC bike which you already know you don't want from riding a friend's Epic.

  8. #8
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    If you cannot demo, want more selection, and are on a stricter budget, then consider online retailers like Jensonusa, Competitive Cyclist, Colorado Cyclist, Universal Cycles.

    Or a buy direct brand like Canyon, YT, Fezzari.

    You can always post back on mtbr for questions about a specific bike or sizing.

    I like Specialized bikes but not the price nor the restrictive parts. They don't sell online so I no longer consider buying one. But from past experience they have a good warranty and customer service, as do many other brands.

    Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post
    Where I live in VA a FS bike with 150mm travel is ideal for me! With that being said there are people riding bikes with more travel and people riding hard tails and ridged bikes on the same trails. We have a pretty wide range of terrain in our state.

    Best bet is to demo bikes or rent them if you need to. There is such a huge range of mountain bikes between cross country and downhill it's impossible to recommend a bike for someone.

    I feel like it's hard to go wrong with a bike in the 120-140mm suspension range whether it's hard tail or full suspension. It would also be the next step up from an XC bike which you already know you don't want from riding a friend's Epic.
    Thanks man. I'm sure there is no one right bike and I bet I'd have fun on pretty much whatever I get. I just want the thing to be durable and I'd like to get the best selection for myself and my area for what these bikes cost. I found a few Stumps closeby that are not STs so I'm going to give those a go on Sunday. What do you all feel the reason that that 3k price ST Stump only comes in a 29? If that was available in a 27.5 I think my mind would be made up. I have ridden a 29 and I didn't HATE it but I do prefer the 27.5.

    And you are right..the Epic is nice but not exactly the setup I'm looking for. Are you out more in the mountainous area of VA? Not too many big hills around my parts hahah.

    Quote Originally Posted by cjsb View Post
    If you cannot demo, want more selection, and are on a stricter budget, then consider online retailers like Jensonusa, Competitive Cyclist, Colorado Cyclist, Universal Cycles.

    Or a buy direct brand like Canyon, YT, Fezzari.

    You can always post back on mtbr for questions about a specific bike or sizing.

    I like Specialized bikes but not the price nor the restrictive parts. They don't sell online so I no longer consider buying one. But from past experience they have a good warranty and customer service, as do many other brands.

    Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk
    I will check those out, thank you. I understand your problems with Specialized. What really drives me to them is my LBS sells them and the service from them has always been paramount and I'd like to support them, as well as have their continued support. I have always loved Specialized as well. I do see that they have a thing on making it hard to go aftermarket on some parts though, which is frustrating. I also can't believe a dropper is 400 bucks, but anyway. Like I said, I rode a few Giants and they just didn't impress me. There are tons of others I'd like to try if I could.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansnxtweek View Post
    Thanks man. I'm sure there is no one right bike and I bet I'd have fun on pretty much whatever I get. I just want the thing to be durable and I'd like to get the best selection for myself and my area for what these bikes cost. I found a few Stumps closeby that are not STs so I'm going to give those a go on Sunday. What do you all feel the reason that that 3k price ST Stump only comes in a 29? If that was available in a 27.5 I think my mind would be made up. I have ridden a 29 and I didn't HATE it but I do prefer the 27.5.

    And you are right..the Epic is nice but not exactly the setup I'm looking for. Are you out more in the mountainous area of VA? Not too many big hills around my parts hahah.



    I will check those out, thank you. I understand your problems with Specialized. What really drives me to them is my LBS sells them and the service from them has always been paramount and I'd like to support them, as well as have their continued support. I have always loved Specialized as well. I do see that they have a thing on making it hard to go aftermarket on some parts though, which is frustrating. I also can't believe a dropper is 400 bucks, but anyway. Like I said, I rode a few Giants and they just didn't impress me. There are tons of others I'd like to try if I could.
    I hear ya, but it is your money.

    Look at the online options and then ask some questions of riders on mtbr about certain models. There are brand specific forums for most of them.

    Given your limited in-person options you may find video reviews somewhat helpfulib determining what you may like?

    I do not endorse their conclusions but Bible of Bike 2018 reviews can give you an idea of what is out there. Just search on YouTube and you will find them

    I found another online review source recently called mtb yumyum. He reviews while he rides and it is more like a more informed rider's opinion compared to Bike Magazine pros on the Bible. Still a helpful data point and his video quality and test trails are exceptional.

    Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk

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    Hell yeah, I hadn't heard of the Bible of Bike at all. I have been looking for some reviews that don't seem so...general. I look forward to looking at those, that's awesome. I will continue my research and see what I find. Def. going to have lots more questions.

    Thanks again for your input man.

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    That's pretty weird they don't sell the alloy comp in 27.5. Anyway, which Giants did you ride? I would consider demoing the Trance 2 if you haven't. Under 3k and great bike for the money.

  14. #14
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    Ride the 29 Stumpy in your price range. It seems for 130mm travel 29 would be the primary choice for most riders given your terrain elevation.

  15. #15
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    Sounds like he didn't really enjoy the 29er after riding it. I'm the same way at times, depending on which 9er I ride. Just prefer the smaller wheel size unless, for example I was racing an xc course that suited it.

  16. #16
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    You should demo on trails. If you're currently riding another wheel, like anything, it'll take a couple+ miles to get adjusted to a different setup. Once you feel adjusted to the bike you get an evaluation of good and bad points. How you can tune it. One 29 can be a completely different bike from another. So I'd get the shop to let you demo the 29 ST on your trails for a real solid evaluation. Then you can always think about upgrades down the road to reduce anything negative. Probably wheelset at that price point.
    On my trails a lot of travel would kill the challenge of most segments and make climbs harder. No way I'd pay for that. In other terrains things would be totally different.

  17. #17
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    Demo as many as you can,, come on down to Florida for a few days.. Alafia FatTire Festival
    the Alafia Fat Tire Festival is Nov 9, 10 and 11. There will be lots of vendors and companies demoing bikes, on the trails.. Alafia has some of the best trails in the south. Don't worry about the price, that is just for the camping area activities and guided rides. The trails and vendor areas are open to the public for the basic state park entrance fee.

    I can second the view that the Giant Trance is a great value, and as far as Stumpy vs Trance, they are both great bikes but have a different feel. Depends on what you like. I liked the Trance better than any under $3k bike out there, my riding buddy liked the Stumpy better.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by mannyfnz View Post
    That's pretty weird they don't sell the alloy comp in 27.5. Anyway, which Giants did you ride? I would consider demoing the Trance 2 if you haven't. Under 3k and great bike for the money.
    I thought so? I also figured maybe I'm an idiot and the ST is just supposed to work with 29s...however they have other models in a 27.5 so obviously there are people who want that setup. I rode a Stance 1 which I realize is cheaper but it was def. far off from what I'm hoping for. That and something even lower was all that shop had. Comparing that to the base Stump ST I rode was not even close. My buddy has an anthem advanced I'd like to try as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Ride the 29 Stumpy in your price range. It seems for 130mm travel 29 would be the primary choice for most riders given your terrain elevation.
    I'm gonna give one a try on monday at a place I found but I don't believe it is an ST. I def. want a mid travel bike from all the reading I've done.

    Quote Originally Posted by mannyfnz View Post
    Sounds like he didn't really enjoy the 29er after riding it. I'm the same way at times, depending on which 9er I ride. Just prefer the smaller wheel size unless, for example I was racing an xc course that suited it.
    I prefer the smaller size as well and one of the trails I ride most often is extreme cut backs left and right and as a whole the trail is just super tight and windy. I like the quick feeling of a 27.5 but I'm not against trying a 29 again...my LBS availability for bikes just sucks around here, I don't get it.

    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    You should demo on trails. If you're currently riding another wheel, like anything, it'll take a couple+ miles to get adjusted to a different setup. Once you feel adjusted to the bike you get an evaluation of good and bad points. How you can tune it. One 29 can be a completely different bike from another. So I'd get the shop to let you demo the 29 ST on your trails for a real solid evaluation. Then you can always think about upgrades down the road to reduce anything negative. Probably wheelset at that price point.
    On my trails a lot of travel would kill the challenge of most segments and make climbs harder. No way I'd pay for that. In other terrains things would be totally different.
    I would love to but I just can't seem to find anything around here. I know Richmond is huge for biking so I may head up there and see what I can find. Its insane to get something without really trying it, to me.




    I am finally starting to see what everyone means about other options. I'm glad I've done some research and I'm finding some other stuff. I am not off the Stump yet, but I am enjoying seeing what else is out there. The SC 5010 seems like a great option and it comes with some good parts. I WISH I could afford the Evil Calling oh my gawd I about lost it when I saw that one. The Whyte T-130 looks like a good option but I'm def. not a fan of the looks but thats about my lowest priority when it comes to all of this. The Transition Scout looks good but I think I want 130 F/R..just looking at that video and its intended use shows me I'm no where near that level of stoke. I also really like the Canyon Spectral, but once again its a 140r/150f setup. Lastly, I looked at the Yeti SB5c but its just a little out of reach for me on budget.

    Thanks again for ya'll's help. My search isn't over yet.

  19. #19
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    I honestly feel like this is the best setup I'm seeing for the best price. That's a good bit of quality components for the price.

    Opinions?

    I know NOTHING about this company..does any one have any info?

    https://www.whyteusa.bike/products/t...nt=41936651916

  20. #20
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    I don't know anything about Whyte either, but at $2250 that could be a good deal.

    Online retailers also have a lot on sale now.

    Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansnxtweek View Post
    And you are right..the Epic is nice but not exactly the setup I'm looking for. Are you out more in the mountainous area of VA? Not too many big hills around my parts hahah.
    I live in Charlottesville and have almost limitless riding options within an hour drive. Not many of those options are flat or smooth though. Most of the best trails are in the George Washington National Forest toward Harrisonburg. 130mm travel bikes work excellent around here but you can make very good use of 150-160mm travel bikes on the downhills.

    I think 130mm full suspension is the sweet spot for a do everything bike. However if your trails are pretty smooth and you don't have any long rough climbs a hard tail might be a great choice. With that being said I've never regretted having 130mm rear suspension on any trail I've ridden.

  22. #22
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    I remember seeing some good reviews from a couple of UK sites. I'm guessing they must be fairly new in the states. That's a tough call since it's kind of an unknown, but I'd try to gather as much info online about it.. Might be a great find. Also, try to demo a Trance if possible.. it's a totally different bike than that Stance, with a different suspension design.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post
    I live in Charlottesville and have almost limitless riding options within an hour drive. Not many of those options are flat or smooth though. Most of the best trails are in the George Washington National Forest toward Harrisonburg. 130mm travel bikes work excellent around here but you can make very good use of 150-160mm travel bikes on the downhills.

    I think 130mm full suspension is the sweet spot for a do everything bike. However if your trails are pretty smooth and you don't have any long rough climbs a hard tail might be a great choice. With that being said I've never regretted having 130mm rear suspension on any trail I've ridden.
    Oh that's awesome! I would love to try some of those trails. I can imagine they are much more demanding than the ones out here. I think the Stumpjumper ST is the right setup for me as far as travel and geometry. I just don't understand why in the 27.5 the price jumps from 1850 to 4500. Its really jacking me up.

    Quote Originally Posted by mannyfnz View Post
    I remember seeing some good reviews from a couple of UK sites. I'm guessing they must be fairly new in the states. That's a tough call since it's kind of an unknown, but I'd try to gather as much info online about it.. Might be a great find. Also, try to demo a Trance if possible.. it's a totally different bike than that Stance, with a different suspension design.
    I found a video on the Whyte and it didn't seem to get a good review at all. I guess with that in mind and the fact they seem pretty unknown..I'm gonna pass on that. I am going to hopefully go ride a Trance as well as an Anthem tomorrow. I gotta get some dang demos in on these things, reading and speculating just isn't doing it for me.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansnxtweek View Post
    Oh that's awesome! I would love to try some of those trails. I can imagine they are much more demanding than the ones out here. I think the Stumpjumper ST is the right setup for me as far as travel and geometry. I just don't understand why in the 27.5 the price jumps from 1850 to 4500. Its really jacking me up.



    I found a video on the Whyte and it didn't seem to get a good review at all. I guess with that in mind and the fact they seem pretty unknown..I'm gonna pass on that. I am going to hopefully go ride a Trance as well as an Anthem tomorrow. I gotta get some dang demos in on these things, reading and speculating just isn't doing it for me.
    I'd definitely recommend coming this way once and a while! Download MTBProject, it will help you find trails and especially in the GWNF help you navigate. If you ride solo make sure you're prepared because the riding near Harrisonburg is pretty isolated. Quite a few fun parks around C-Ville as well and you can try navigating the Rivannah Trail which is a 20mile loop within the city.

    You can get all models of the stumpjumper in 27.5 or 29. Wheel size has nothing to do with price. Suspension is expensive and so are carbon frames. Better components will jack up the price of a bike extremely quick. Specialized and Trek are also rather expensive names to have on a bike .

    Ride everything you can, you don't really know what you want until you've actually ridden it on the terrain you plan on riding. Even if it means spending a few hundred bucks renting bikes. Much cheaper than dropping $3k and realizing it isn't actually what you wanted.

  25. #25
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    I use MTBproject webpage, I am not fond of their app. Two other websites I use to fine trails are Trailforks.com and Singletracks.com I sometimes us Trailforks app, but mostly use all of them from the webpages.

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    Quote Originally Posted by armii View Post
    I use MTBproject webpage, I am not fond of their app. Two other websites I use to fine trails are Trailforks.com and Singletracks.com I sometimes us Trailforks app, but mostly use all of them from the webpages.
    Not sure if other apps have it but being able to see your GPS location on the trail map while outside of cell service is pretty important for me. Most back country trails here don't have any real marking and there is definitely no cell service. I still use it occasionally even on trails I know pretty well. Sometimes there's a fork and forgot if I should go left or right or maybe find a longer/shorter route.

  27. #27
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    Trail forks does too. for me it depends on which one the local riders use most.

  28. #28
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    What is yalls opinions on a 2017 Camber Comp Carbon 650b for 2400? The sucker looks new.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post
    I'd definitely recommend coming this way once and a while! Download MTBProject, it will help you find trails and especially in the GWNF help you navigate. If you ride solo make sure you're prepared because the riding near Harrisonburg is pretty isolated. Quite a few fun parks around C-Ville as well and you can try navigating the Rivannah Trail which is a 20mile loop within the city.

    You can get all models of the stumpjumper in 27.5 or 29. Wheel size has nothing to do with price. Suspension is expensive and so are carbon frames. Better components will jack up the price of a bike extremely quick. Specialized and Trek are also rather expensive names to have on a bike .

    Ride everything you can, you don't really know what you want until you've actually ridden it on the terrain you plan on riding. Even if it means spending a few hundred bucks renting bikes. Much cheaper than dropping $3k and realizing it isn't actually what you wanted.
    Thanks for al the info Iíd definitely love to check the area out! My sister went to UVA so Iím few familiar with how awesome it is out there! Iím gonna check with the shop today and see if theyíd let me trail ride one. Not sure if thatís a thing there or not. As far as the wheel sizes I was referring to the stumpjumper st comp model. For some reason the comp only comes in a 29. The 27.5 version that they offer is the base, then the carbon at 4K and up from there. No alloy comp model in 27.5. I do agree that the name is heavily involved but when Iíve looked at Santa Cruz, Evil, Transition..those smaller companies. Most are a bit out of my range. Iíve got to stay at 3 or below and I know that limits me heavily.

    Thanks for the help maybe we can get together when I ride out there!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by armii View Post
    I use MTBproject webpage, I am not fond of their app. Two other websites I use to fine trails are Trailforks.com and Singletracks.com I sometimes us Trailforks app, but mostly use all of them from the webpages.
    Thanks! Iíve been curious what apps and webpages are out there. Iíll cjeck those out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post
    Not sure if other apps have it but being able to see your GPS location on the trail map while outside of cell service is pretty important for me. Most back country trails here don't have any real marking and there is definitely no cell service. I still use it occasionally even on trails I know pretty well. Sometimes there's a fork and forgot if I should go left or right or maybe find a longer/shorter route.
    Thatíd be SWEET. I would definitely like having that when I am not familiar with the area.

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    Most of the bike shops here have rental bikes. Usually it's about $60 a day but that lets you take it out and ride wherever you want and mess with suspension and tire pressures to truely get a feel of the bike.

    The Camber looks like a great deal to me.

    I'm up for riding sometime but I work weekend night shift. Pretty much all of my riding is while most people are at work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post
    Most of the bike shops here have rental bikes. Usually it's about $60 a day but that lets you take it out and ride wherever you want and mess with suspension and tire pressures to truely get a feel of the bike.

    The Camber looks like a great deal to me.

    I'm up for riding sometime but I work weekend night shift. Pretty much all of my riding is while most people are at work.
    Well weíre in that together!! Thatís all I work is shift work.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansnxtweek View Post
    Well weíre in that together!! Thatís all I work is shift work.
    Sweet! We'll work out a ride sometime after you sort out getting a bike.

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    Just wanted to update the thread. Ended up with a Comp Stumpjumper 27.5. Good lord itís so fun!!!!! Thanks everyone for the help!

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    Sweet!.. Congrats. What color? Btw, do you know which build it is?..their site has that model listed a few times at different prices. Weird. But anyway, good choice.. enjoy it!!

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    Congrats! I've also got at Stumpjumper Comp Alloy 27.5 and love it (2018).

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    Quote Originally Posted by vansnxtweek View Post
    Just wanted to update the thread. Ended up with a Comp Stumpjumper 27.5. Good lord itís so fun!!!!! Thanks everyone for the help!
    Good choice! Enjoy the ride!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mannyfnz View Post
    Sweet!.. Congrats. What color? Btw, do you know which build it is?..their site has that model listed a few times at different prices. Weird. But anyway, good choice.. enjoy it!!
    Thanks!!! I tried to post a picture but I canít figure it out on my phone. Iím gonna try tapatalk. Itís the acid mint, sea foam basically. I love it!! Itís the comp 27.5 full travel. My buddy got the 12 speed one in white and itís very nice as well.


    Quote Originally Posted by briank View Post
    Congrats! I've also got at Stumpjumper Comp Alloy 27.5 and love it (2018).
    Thanks man itís so dang poppy and fun!

    Quote Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post
    Good choice! Enjoy the ride!
    Thanks Dave!!!!

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    Donít mind the mess itís out of control right now! Like a diamond in the rough hahahah




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Jan 2012
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    Nice.

  40. #40
    bike pamper-er
    Reputation: cakeba's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    61
    Get a steel hardtail from Orange or Chromag or something like that. They're fast, comfy, durable and if you get a long and slack one, you won't really have any limits on what you can do with it. Plus, with FS bikes you have to worry about maintenance, shock setup, pedaling efficiency, overall suspension performance like small bump sensitivity or if it wallows or if it has high-end stuff. With a hardtail, you can look at the geometry and know what you're going to get.
    Shorter seat tubes, taller droppers.
    Shorter chainstays, taller stacks.
    Shorter stems, taller BB's.

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