Being a cheapskate, will 5 year old Stumpjumpers or Cambers be good for endurance xc?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Being a cheapskate, will 5 year old Stumpjumpers or Cambers be good for endurance xc?

    So I've been looking hard at Epic or Yeti-ASR (or replacement). But I'm finding it hard to justify $4000-5000. So another option is used frames or bikes.

    Stumpjumper 2014 Comp in Large is about 30 lbs, and the Camber similar.

    My build would be less, as I would use some existing parts and 1x, but I'm thinking 28lbs (XT brakes, XTR levers, XT 1x 10spd, CK hubs with Stans crest rims, Phenom saddle, carbon bars etc ... stuff that would come on a higher end SJ, not the base comp).

    This is an improvement over my current bike, however with my current bike I'm not even considering doing these xc or marathon xc events. Perhaps if I did the SJ build, and then found it's too heavy, I'd have an upgraded 2014 SJ that I could sell. It would owe me under $750, so I can only really lose a max of $750.

    I'm sure there are others like me who had trail/AM bikes, but got older and wanted to do more xc riding again, and had to justify $4k or a $1k upgrade with something that isn't ideal, but an improvement.

    Thoughts?

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Iím in a similar situation. I donít race much (we had a daughter and sheís just turned two) but I will be getting back to doing a marathon race or two a year, starting this fall.

    Iíve always been on hardtails but recently got, what I consider, an insane deal on an NOS 2014 Camber Expert Carbon. Although it will be a fair bit heavier than the Niner RDO I am used to racing, it should be significantly more comfortable. I canít imagine being faster on the climbs but I should gain a significant amount of time on the descents. (The return descent at the 2016 FoolsGold race was bone jarring for me)

    In my case, I donít see the heavier bike being the limiter. I also wouldnít see a new model Epic, Camber etc being a performance boost. While some of the tech has improved, they were all highly respected platforms when they came out. The camber is a weird model, bridging a gap that probably didnít need a bridge but nonetheless Iíve got one and Iím going to be happy with it.

    Good luck in your search, I say go for an older model.



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    Quote Originally Posted by jake2185 View Post
    Iím in a similar situation. I donít race much (we had a daughter and sheís just turned two) but I will be getting back to doing a marathon race or two a year, starting this fall.

    Iíve always been on hardtails but recently got, what I consider, an insane deal on an NOS 2014 Camber Expert Carbon. Although it will be a fair bit heavier than the Niner RDO I am used to racing, it should be significantly more comfortable. I canít imagine being faster on the climbs but I should gain a significant amount of time on the descents. (The return descent at the 2016 FoolsGold race was bone jarring for me)

    In my case, I donít see the heavier bike being the limiter. I also wouldnít see a new model Epic, Camber etc being a performance boost. While some of the tech has improved, they were all highly respected platforms when they came out. The camber is a weird model, bridging a gap that probably didnít need a bridge but nonetheless Iíve got one and Iím going to be happy with it.

    Good luck in your search, I say go for an older model.



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    This? That would be ideal for bridging the gap between Epic and SJ. Do you mind me asking what you paid? I have never seen Specialized's for more than 10% off.

    I guess my big worry is swapping my heavy (don't know actual weight) Titus for something lighter, but still not light enough that I'd feel like a big marathon length XC race is something I'd enjoy. Same with wanting to get into Xterra off road triathlons. And I don't want to spend $1200 upgrading, sell old parts (plus more stuff sitting around) and having an out of pocket of $750, and still not feel like a 50km+ xc race is sensible.

    I've got two kids under 4, and cannot be sure I'll get to ride even monthly, which is another argument for the used SJ or Camber.

    Thanks,
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    I need to add that my Camber is frame only. Iíll be building it with parts from a previous RDO. 120mm Reba, RF Next cranks, XTR 11 speed and Roval control carbon wheels. Iím not sure what the weight will be but Iíd guess around 25ish?

    I paid $200 for the frame. It didnt come with a shock, headset, thru axle, derailleur hanger, seat clamp....

    Itís been a pain getting some of the ďproprietaryĒ parts like the internal cable guides but for the deal I got, I can handle some inconvenience.

    Maybe an older Epic will be separate enough from what you have to make you feel more comfortable with a marathon distance? Had I not found this camber I would have waited for an Epic from 2014-2016. But Iím a cheapskate too so I probably would have never found one.


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    I would build a 27.5 xc bike. You can get a fox factory 27.5 step cast from Jenson for 300. You can get it Swiss spline 1700 wheels from bike24dotcom.com for $450. Then find a used frame and build up a killer bike. There are killer deals on close out bikes if you know what to look for. 27.5 just never took off for xc but the equipment is still top notch. If you want more of a trail bike you can get a intense spider for 1200 new right now. Add a xfusion velvet and you will have a killer xc trail frame set for 1600.

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    Quote Originally Posted by party_wagon View Post
    I would build a 27.5 xc bike. You can get a fox factory 27.5 step cast from Jenson for 300. You can get it Swiss spline 1700 wheels from bike24dotcom.com for $450. Then find a used frame and build up a killer bike. There are killer deals on close out bikes if you know what to look for. 27.5 just never took off for xc but the equipment is still top notch. If you want more of a trail bike you can get a intense spider for 1200 new right now. Add a xfusion velvet and you will have a killer xc trail frame set for 1600.
    I'd not thought about 27.5. I have to say, I really don't know of any XC frames to even look for. I'll do some research.

    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jake2185 View Post
    I need to add that my Camber is frame only. Iíll be building it with parts from a previous RDO. 120mm Reba, RF Next cranks, XTR 11 speed and Roval control carbon wheels. Iím not sure what the weight will be but Iíd guess around 25ish?

    I paid $200 for the frame. It didnt come with a shock, headset, thru axle, derailleur hanger, seat clamp....

    Itís been a pain getting some of the ďproprietaryĒ parts like the internal cable guides but for the deal I got, I can handle some inconvenience.

    Maybe an older Epic will be separate enough from what you have to make you feel more comfortable with a marathon distance? Had I not found this camber I would have waited for an Epic from 2014-2016. But Iím a cheapskate too so I probably would have never found one.


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    That is an amazing deal on that frame. Good work on that. I would have grabbed that in a second.

    I think the 2018 onwards Epic fits what I'm after, but the reviews of earlier ones have them sounding too twitchy for the trail riding I'd do. That's where the Camber seems to be better suited. And then the SJ would be amazing for a couple of hour ride, but I'm just nervous that I'd find it heavy and slow feeling when doing the marathon and xc events I plan to target each year. I'm probably going to try 24hr solo's again (its been nearly 15 years since I last did one), so something that I'd use for that.

    The used camber I've found seems great, if it wasn't for it being the Comp model. I'd upgrade (with existing parts) most things, but if I did the fork, now I'm spending more than I think a 2013 alloy 28lb camber is really worth.

    Thanks

  8. #8
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    For me, good for endurance XC racing is decent travel, but not necessarily more than 100mm, the difference between being out there on a + sized hardtail vs. 100mm FS bike, barring any kind of stupid Spec. epic-brain systems, is ocean-wide. The difference between a 100 and 120mm is minuscule compared to that. Other important concerns are open-space in the frame (front triangle), for say a frame-bag, where you can get more weight off your back. Even if you still use a camelback, you can go with a minimal one and put food and other important stuff in the frame-bag. Then non-proprietary shocks is important, if I need to upgrade or get a replacement quick for some reason. Lateral stiffness and general reliability as far as the pivots are concerned. In particular, the horst-link pivots on my Specialized Enduro were pretty poor, as in they weren't really engineered to be replaceable, so the bike wasn't really intended/designed to hold up year after year.

    Then the whole "good for endurance XC" vs "good for endurance XC racing" magnifies all of these if you are intending to race competitively, and other features like bike weight, efficiency, and so on, will add up and be important at the higher levels of racing. My bike that I take on a 50 mile mountain bike ride is a 6" "AM" type bike, but my bike I'd take on a 50 mile race is my 4" XC race bike with the slightly heavier wheelset for a bit more durability (being further from civilization). Almost any modern bike will work fine for endurance XC (50 mile or more rides) as long as it's in good mechanical condition (bearings/pivots, shock, etc.).
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    For me, good for endurance XC racing is decent travel, but not necessarily more than 100mm, the difference between being out there on a + sized hardtail vs. 100mm FS bike, barring any kind of stupid Spec. epic-brain systems, is ocean-wide. The difference between a 100 and 120mm is minuscule compared to that. Other important concerns are open-space in the frame (front triangle), for say a frame-bag, where you can get more weight off your back. Even if you still use a camelback, you can go with a minimal one and put food and other important stuff in the frame-bag. Then non-proprietary shocks is important, if I need to upgrade or get a replacement quick for some reason. Lateral stiffness and general reliability as far as the pivots are concerned. In particular, the horst-link pivots on my Specialized Enduro were pretty poor, as in they weren't really engineered to be replaceable, so the bike wasn't really intended/designed to hold up year after year.

    Then the whole "good for endurance XC" vs "good for endurance XC racing" magnifies all of these if you are intending to race competitively, and other features like bike weight, efficiency, and so on, will add up and be important at the higher levels of racing. My bike that I take on a 50 mile mountain bike ride is a 6" "AM" type bike, but my bike I'd take on a 50 mile race is my 4" XC race bike with the slightly heavier wheelset for a bit more durability (being further from civilization). Almost any modern bike will work fine for endurance XC (50 mile or more rides) as long as it's in good mechanical condition (bearings/pivots, shock, etc.).
    Great post. It gives me a lot to think about for a future FS rig. The proprietary theme across the Specialized line up may well be a problem for me down the road.

    That said, I see the Camber as more of an Xc endurance ride machine. Especially with just one bottle cage mount. If Iím going to race, Iíd rather bring my SS RDO with 2 cages and the possibility to run gears. Coming from a small RDO with one cage, there is mental comfort in having double the hydration.

    Your post makes me wonder if a cheap Chinese carbon FS frame might fit the XC race category really well. The quality seems to get better as time goes on and they are pretty cheap too.

    OP, have you given the Chinese frames any thought?


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  10. #10
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    I am just a dumb rigid single speed guy, but I will mention what was already mentioned above about a hard tail. You can build a really nice hard tail for quite a bit cheaper than a full suspension. Depending on what races you're doing, a hard tail may actually be beneficial.

    Personally I haven't found anything on an 50+ mile xc race course that required suspension, though I am sure there are some out there. You may lose a small fraction of efficiency through long chatter sections, but I would venture to guess you would lose the same efficiency lugging a 30lb bike over 50 miles.

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    I think you're dealing with a mental blocker more than anything else. I did my first XC race on a 30lb steel single speed. I did my first 100k (Hampshire 100k) on that same bike with a $100 used Fox fork, then my first 100 miler (Hampshire 100) on that same bike with a SLX crank and $300 wheel set off of eBay as upgrades. So, your Titus? Get out there and get it done. A different bike isn't going to make it any easier. 2 kids under 4? Same situation I'm in. Don't buy bikes, build for a more secure financial future now while the kids are relatively inexpensive would be my advice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    Don't buy bikes, build for a more secure financial future now while the kids are relatively inexpensive would be my advice.
    So you assume the OP has a poor financial outlook because he's a cheapskate and wants a different bike?

    This is a bike forum...not Merrill Lynch.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jake2185 View Post
    So you assume the OP has a poor financial outlook because he's a cheapskate and wants a different bike?

    This is a bike forum...not Merrill Lynch.
    No, I don't think the OP has a poor financial outlook. However, if the OP is worried about spending $5k on a bike, or even $1k, then he's not so well off that he shouldn't be planning for his kids college.

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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    No, I don't think the OP has a poor financial outlook. However, if the OP is worried about spending $5k on a bike, or even $1k, then he's not so well off that he shouldn't be planning for his kids college.
    I save 30% of my earnings in accounts separate from my personal spending account. Then I live pay check to pay check. Coming up with 8k for a bike is a struggle even though I am well on my way to being worth several million by the time i'm 60.

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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    No, I don't think the OP has a poor financial outlook. However, if the OP is worried about spending $5k on a bike, or even $1k, then he's not so well off that he shouldn't be planning for his kids college.
    It's posts like this that remind me why I'm a misanthrope.

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    Many apologies for thinking that someone worried about spending money is actually just shy of being a millionaire and has been mislead to believe his Titus can't be ridden for 100 miles. I'll just shut my pie hole now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    Many apologies for thinking that someone worried about spending money is actually just shy of being a millionaire and has been mislead to believe his Titus can't be ridden for 100 miles. I'll just shut my pie hole now.
    Personally the only used bike I would consider is a steel hardtail since they never wear out. Full suspension bikes break, and have pivots and shocks to service. As a recreational racer the cane creek thudbuster should not be over looked either. It will transform any hardtail into a trek pro caliber and only costs $150 and adds like 200 grams. If I did get a full suspension bike I would buy a new bike with a lifetime frame warranty such as the new 27.5 giant anthem or the santa cruz tallboy. Something like a niner ros 9 on 2.35 race kings with a thudbuster would make a fantastic 100 mile bike.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by party_wagon View Post
    Personally the only used bike I would consider is a steel hardtail since they never wear out. Full suspension bikes break, and have pivots and shocks to service. As a recreational racer the cane creek thudbuster should not be over looked either.
    So thudbusters, fork seals, fork bushings, bottom bracket bearings, derailleurs, chains, rear cassettes, front rings, pedals, shifters, brakes, saddles, grips, never wear out?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    So thudbusters, fork seals, fork bushings, bottom bracket bearings, derailleurs, chains, rear cassettes, front rings, pedals, shifters, brakes, saddles, grips, never wear out?
    Just because they wear out doesn't mean I want to deal with an aging full suspension frame. https://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/2306194/ There are too many horror stories out there about failed full suspension frames. If I buy a frame I want it to last me a good ten years minimum and steel seems to have the fewest horror stories. Plus it rides smooth for a hardtail. If I budget $750 a year for bike expenses a hardtail will let me get a bunch of surplus so I can actually buy a nice new bike down the road. I like the intense spiders at their pricepoint because you can get a full carbon 130 bike with a respectable build for around $2500. If I read this I would not go running out the door to buy a used 5 year old full suspension bike with no warranty.
    https://intensecycles.com/pages/warranty
    Last edited by party_wagon; 03-13-2018 at 10:44 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by solo-x View Post
    No, I don't think the OP has a poor financial outlook. However, if the OP is worried about spending $5k on a bike, or even $1k, then he's not so well off that he shouldn't be planning for his kids college.
    Savings are really healthy, college funds too. I just have a hard time spending big chunks of change. I fritter away money on inefficient grocery trips every week, and that adds up to more than a bike over a year, but I still struggle to spend big chunks. I have permission from the wife to buy a new car, yet I'm taking my old $1500 car even further into the ground, as I just can't bring myself to drop $45k for a 4Runner that does bad milage (but that's another thread).

    I've been doing more reading, and there are more options in the mix. I am finding that if I say I want 34mm fork and sub 28lb bikes, that it becomes not cost effective to buy a cheaper old bike and upgrade it. The Expert Camber has carbon rims and a Fox Performance (My newest Fox fork was a 2006, so this whole Factory and Performance thing is new to me).

    If I buy an alloy Camber 29 for $1500 on closeout (down from $1900), it's got a pretty nasty fork (My current setup is 2006 Talas 90-130mm), and if I upgrade that, I end up over $2k, and still running either my XT/XTR parts from 10 years ago) ... so really to make a $1500 Camber what I'm after, I'm probably going to spend $2500-3000 (fork, wheels, group). So the Camber Expert with warranty for $4400 is not much more ... and you get Carbon frame with warranty.

    Then I find a used 2016-2018 (not sure of exact year) Camber S-Works 650 for $4500. Looks amazing condition, but the lack of frame warranty and paying someone $4500 in a private sale ... that'd be the most expensive used item I've ever bought, except for cars and houses.

    If I can get this bike purchase ''right'', I'll have this bike for 12 years like the last one. I'll not be lugging around a heavy, high bottom bracketed Titus that does not in anyway suit my riding. I'll feel okay about entering some week night xc races and some marathon distance events etc too.

    I know you're supposed to enjoy buying a bike, but I just find it so stressful to work out what is the best option that I can feel okay about the cost of.

    Thanks everyone for the info.

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    Quote Originally Posted by party_wagon View Post
    Personally the only used bike I would consider is a steel hardtail since they never wear out. Full suspension bikes break, and have pivots and shocks to service. As a recreational racer the cane creek thudbuster should not be over looked either. It will transform any hardtail into a trek pro caliber and only costs $150 and adds like 200 grams. If I did get a full suspension bike I would buy a new bike with a lifetime frame warranty such as the new 27.5 giant anthem or the santa cruz tallboy. Something like a niner ros 9 on 2.35 race kings with a thudbuster would make a fantastic 100 mile bike.
    I've only ever bought used steel too (although I'm selling two of those when I can get the time to strip them down. A nice track bike and a ex-race bike made by Condor in the UK ... absolutely beautiful bike, but I never have time to ride a steel fixie).

    Anyways, so I totally hear you about the worries of buying used carbon/full-sus. But then I know the number of frame failures as a percentage of bikes sold, is pretty low. With Specialized, I don't see lots of reports of failures. With smaller brands, they do seem to have bad models and years that fail more.

    So I've found this 1 year old, mint condition S-Works Camber. It is half price of new. Now if someone was choosing between $9k on a new one, or the used for $4500, then it would make sense to buy used. At worst, the frame breaks, and you buy another used one or a used frame or a new frame. Either way you're under $9k.

    Now for me, I'm not about to buy a $9k bike, so buying a used $4500 bike ... it's a risk. I'd be at max budget, and if it broke, I'm screwed. Now if I could find a mint 1 year old Expert ... for half price ... then we're talking.

    So it will take a lot to get me to buy a used bike from someone I don't know. If it was a friend, then they could always claim the warranty if something went wrong. But that's not going to happen with a stranger.

    Actually, tonight I picked up a used Specialized HotWalk for my son ... so I guess I just bought a used alloy bike. I got a used Specialized HotRock for the other son last summer ... so that makes two used alloy bikes. Given the HotRock weighs the same as my road bike, I don't think there's any chance it'll ever break.

    Thanks

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    Hmmm, just reading my post. If the Stumpjumper frame + some parts was a camber, and in the same condition, then I'd buy that. As the risk is financially small, maybe $500. But I guess it's that it's ''too much bike'' for my needs that holds me back.

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    The Titus could be ridden 100 miles, but it is a 12 year old (I think maybe 13) bike. It's not light, and has this crazy high bottom bracket. It's been ridden in CA, UT, France, UK, New Zealand ... it's done well. When I get out for big climbs though, the weight and geometry just make life hard. I bought it when my friends and I were going from XC to more Trail riding. As soon as I bought it, the friends had kids and stopped riding. So I struggled away with it on xc rides for years, but never did any riding that needed it's beefier build or high bb. I feel I'm ''stable'' now, in that if I'm not doing drops/jumps/downhill/trail riding now, I'm not going to ever start. I miss xc races, I miss marathon races, and a bike now should last me 10-15 years if I get it right.

    I know I ''should'' spend $5k and get something I'll really like, but I always hope there's some option to spend less. The used options I found look good at a glance, but when I dive in deeper, it seems they're either another bike not suited to my riding, or once I up-spec a few items, I'm close enough to a new bike I may as well just buy new.

    Hopefully this will motivate me to list more stuff on ebay this weekend, and if it sells well, I'll go buy a Camber Expert and be done with it.

    Thanks.

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    I haven't rode one yet but I like the numbers on the 27.5 Giant anthem a lot. They have a $4k bike that comes with carbon wheels and stuff. I think it would make a fantastic bike for endurance with 110 rear and 130 front. Plus the frame has a lifetime warranty to the original owner.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SingleSpeedSteven View Post
    I am just a dumb rigid single speed guy, but I will mention what was already mentioned above about a hard tail. You can build a really nice hard tail for quite a bit cheaper than a full suspension. Depending on what races you're doing, a hard tail may actually be beneficial.

    Personally I haven't found anything on an 50+ mile xc race course that required suspension, though I am sure there are some out there. You may lose a small fraction of efficiency through long chatter sections, but I would venture to guess you would lose the same efficiency lugging a 30lb bike over 50 miles.
    I ride geared HT, SS and 5" trail bike. My choice for 50+ mile races is my carbon geared HT. Great bike for these distances as it light and effeicent. However I am losing too much ground to those on 100 FS bikes. So I am ordering this evening a Epic Carbon and will be sell my geared HT. I find plenty of long XC races where the rear suspension will help if the bike is light. However my 5" trail bike is 29lbs and too heavy for long XC races. Longest ride I did on it was 55 miler around Sedona and that was more a group ride on the endurance course than a race.

    Now if you have limited funds it is better spend on light 29er HT than heavy 29FS bike. I have been cheapskate for long time too and have been able to cobble together some good bikes by finding deals in the used market. The Epic I am ordering is the first new bike for me in 16 years so it kind if a treat.
    Joe
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    Quote Originally Posted by stillkeen View Post
    The Titus could be ridden 100 miles, but it is a 12 year old (I think maybe 13) bike. It's not light, and has this crazy high bottom bracket. It's been ridden in CA, UT, France, UK, New Zealand ... it's done well. When I get out for big climbs though, the weight and geometry just make life hard. I bought it when my friends and I were going from XC to more Trail riding. As soon as I bought it, the friends had kids and stopped riding. So I struggled away with it on xc rides for years, but never did any riding that needed it's beefier build or high bb. I feel I'm ''stable'' now, in that if I'm not doing drops/jumps/downhill/trail riding now, I'm not going to ever start. I miss xc races, I miss marathon races, and a bike now should last me 10-15 years if I get it right.

    I know I ''should'' spend $5k and get something I'll really like, but I always hope there's some option to spend less. The used options I found look good at a glance, but when I dive in deeper, it seems they're either another bike not suited to my riding, or once I up-spec a few items, I'm close enough to a new bike I may as well just buy new.

    Hopefully this will motivate me to list more stuff on ebay this weekend, and if it sells well, I'll go buy a Camber Expert and be done with it.

    Thanks.
    I understand the hesitation to spend vast sums on a fancy new bike. What I believe is that if you demo enough you'll come across a good bike that you love and the price will no longer smart so much. You seem fixated on specialized and maybe you should branch out a bit. Get an opinion of what you want and like.

    If you're talking about owning a bike for 10 years I don't know anyone that regrets getting a pivot, seem to stand up really well. A used mach 429 would be my vote, but ride and see. The other brand i'm now keen on is giant, the trance and anthem kick pass, great prices for how well they ride. The trek fuel ex also rides and climbs really well but not so fun. I did try a 8k carbon camber - nice bike but i'm gunshy of specialized after their era of proprietary bs.

    I've always been a careful used bike buyer and never had a single regret. I buy good bikes and keep them forever. I think the used bike scare above is bs. I've caught the ss bug and am beyond content on my used 2012 ti hardtail, I've found I can ride everything on it, I just go slower through the tech but have more fun. really I think the key is to find what you like and ride it - demo everything then buy once.
    the truth is always a gift because it offers the recipient of that information the chance to change the outcome - Grace Choi

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    I ride geared HT, SS and 5" trail bike. My choice for 50+ mile races is my carbon geared HT. Great bike for these distances as it light and effeicent. However I am losing too much ground to those on 100 FS bikes. So I am ordering this evening a Epic Carbon and will be sell my geared HT. I find plenty of long XC races where the rear suspension will help if the bike is light. However my 5" trail bike is 29lbs and too heavy for long XC races. Longest ride I did on it was 55 miler around Sedona and that was more a group ride on the endurance course than a race.

    Now if you have limited funds it is better spend on light 29er HT than heavy 29FS bike. I have been cheapskate for long time too and have been able to cobble together some good bikes by finding deals in the used market. The Epic I am ordering is the first new bike for me in 16 years so it kind if a treat.
    I see your point. I guess it really depends on how competitive you are trying to be. If you're a front of the pack guy or pushing for podiums, then a short travel xc bike is definitely in your favor. If you're a mid pack guy who's trying to squeeze pennies into a nice bike, a hard tail always seemed like a sweet spot to me.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by stillkeen View Post
    I'd not thought about 27.5. I have to say, I really don't know of any XC frames to even look for. I'll do some research.

    Thanks.
    Stay away from the anthems without warranty, they are supposed to have cracking problems but come with a lifetime warranty for the original owner. With how cheap parts for 27.5 are right now you could build up a really nice bike with a cheap chinese carbon frame for about $1500. I've seen focus ravens which are a really nice long ride carbon hardtail on closeout a lot lately.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by party_wagon View Post
    I haven't rode one yet but I like the numbers on the 27.5 Giant anthem a lot. They have a $4k bike that comes with carbon wheels and stuff. I think it would make a fantastic bike for endurance with 110 rear and 130 front. Plus the frame has a lifetime warranty to the original owner.
    Thanks, I'll take a look.

    Specialized are high on the priority list because of warranty, resale (if needed) and they're in many countries with a transferable warranty.

    Cannondale have always appealed, but never seem cheap.
    I love giant for build quality and price, just a little worried about their ride characteristics. I know some friends had some models that they never got on with, but I know others who found a model/year that was great. So I'd just want to make sure on that note.
    Scott Spark 900 shows up in reviews against Camber.
    Yeti ASR-C (or replacement) sound great, but really not too sure about 5 year warranty and reading about previous years where they had higher rates or failures and creaking.
    BMC, Trek, Pivot etc ... just don't know enough

    I'll look for a Scott and Giant dealer, and get going.

    Thanks

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by stillkeen View Post
    I'd not thought about 27.5. I have to say, I really don't know of any XC frames to even look for. I'll do some research.

    Thanks.
    I came across these today.https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...SABEgLeXvD_BwE. That with a step cast from Jenson and any one of a number of wheel sets on closeout would set you back less than 1200.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by party_wagon View Post
    I came across these today.https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...SABEgLeXvD_BwE. That with a step cast from Jenson and any one of a number of wheel sets on closeout would set you back less than 1200.
    That is a beautiful Frame. Interesting what could be built on that.

    I do think I want a full-sus though. As of today, my list is probably:

    1) New 2018 Santa Cruz Blur $3700-4400 MSRP
    2) Used 2016 s-works camber $4500 (there are two on ebay now, one 3 months use, the other 10 rides demo bike ... which I'm told still has a warranty ... although when claiming in five years time, that may turn out to be untrue)
    3) New Expert camber $4400

    The wild cards remain the replacement to the Yeti ASR, or just an ASR.

    I've gone off the used Stumpjumper frame or used alloy cambers. Basically it was going to end up costing too close to a new bike, and it would be a 5+ year old bike.

    I'll keep looking, and wait for the Sea Otter announcement of the replacement to the ASR.

    The others like Pivot etc are out of my visibility. I'll look at Scott Spark 900 and the Giant Anthem (x?), but they'd have to come in cheaper than my options above to consider.

    Thanks, will update when I make a decision.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by stillkeen View Post
    That is a beautiful Frame. Interesting what could be built on that.

    I do think I want a full-sus though. As of today, my list is probably:

    1) New 2018 Santa Cruz Blur $3700-4400 MSRP
    2) Used 2016 s-works camber $4500 (there are two on ebay now, one 3 months use, the other 10 rides demo bike ... which I'm told still has a warranty ... although when claiming in five years time, that may turn out to be untrue)
    3) New Expert camber $4400

    The wild cards remain the replacement to the Yeti ASR, or just an ASR.

    I've gone off the used Stumpjumper frame or used alloy cambers. Basically it was going to end up costing too close to a new bike, and it would be a 5+ year old bike.

    I'll keep looking, and wait for the Sea Otter announcement of the replacement to the ASR.

    The others like Pivot etc are out of my visibility. I'll look at Scott Spark 900 and the Giant Anthem (x?), but they'd have to come in cheaper than my options above to consider.

    Thanks, will update when I make a decision.
    I'd buy the new Blur over a used S-works.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by stillkeen View Post
    That is a beautiful Frame. Interesting what could be built on that.

    I do think I want a full-sus though. As of today, my list is probably:

    1) New 2018 Santa Cruz Blur $3700-4400 MSRP
    2) Used 2016 s-works camber $4500 (there are two on ebay now, one 3 months use, the other 10 rides demo bike ... which I'm told still has a warranty ... although when claiming in five years time, that may turn out to be untrue)
    3) New Expert camber $4400

    The wild cards remain the replacement to the Yeti ASR, or just an ASR.

    I've gone off the used Stumpjumper frame or used alloy cambers. Basically it was going to end up costing too close to a new bike, and it would be a 5+ year old bike.

    I'll keep looking, and wait for the Sea Otter announcement of the replacement to the ASR.

    The others like Pivot etc are out of my visibility. I'll look at Scott Spark 900 and the Giant Anthem (x?), but they'd have to come in cheaper than my options above to consider.

    Thanks, will update when I make a decision.
    I would check out your lbs service department and see who you actually have confidence in servicing the suspension. I wouldn't want to have a brain or dual lockout system without a specialized or other service shop I have confidence in servicing my suspension. A lot of bike shops will also offer 20% off on service work if you purchased the bike from them. I would go with the bike that fits your fun and training rides the best. If your sprinting hills and bombing descents and doing things a 100mm bike would struggle with when your actually putting in the fun enjoyable training I would lean towards the camber.

  34. #34
    LDC is ded,deth by trollz
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    I had the 2018 camber expert for a few weeks. I wanted to throw it off the side of the cliff that thing sucked so bad, went back to riding my rdo with a dropper and fox 34. I would race your Titus because youll need to focus on a lot more things than the bike to race.

  35. #35
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    I have a '14 SJ 29 and have done several 50 mile endurance races on it. Not the best climber by any means (150mm/130mm) but the extra travel is nice when I'm tired and don't have to stress if I make a bad line choice. Go for the SJ or Camber and get some super light wheels for it.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaneDetroitCity View Post
    I had the 2018 camber expert for a few weeks. I wanted to throw it off the side of the cliff that thing sucked so bad, went back to riding my rdo with a dropper and fox 34. I would race your Titus because youll need to focus on a lot more things than the bike to race.
    Just out of curiosity, why did you dislike the Camber? I've ridden the Expert level ones a handful of times at shop demos and found them to be extremely well balanced bikes... if I were ever looking to cut back to one bike (never going to happen, but hypothetically) the Camber would be towards the top of my list.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by party_wagon View Post
    I would check out your lbs service department and see who you actually have confidence in servicing the suspension. I wouldn't want to have a brain or dual lockout system without a specialized or other service shop I have confidence in servicing my suspension. A lot of bike shops will also offer 20% off on service work if you purchased the bike from them. I would go with the bike that fits your fun and training rides the best. If your sprinting hills and bombing descents and doing things a 100mm bike would struggle with when your actually putting in the fun enjoyable training I would lean towards the camber.
    Each day this week, the Blur has risen up the list.

    I'm happy doing seals and rebuilds of the Fox shocks and forks I've had before. So I'm not concerned about the Blur that way. The Epic though, just seems historically it's been hard to find details and spares. Maybe the new RS Brain stuff will be more user serviceable, but definitely the Blur wins that one.

    Thanks

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