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Thread: El Mar 3 vs SS

  1. #1
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    El Mar 3 vs SS

    I previously owned the El Mar SS and loved it. That bike was stolen last year and I'm finally getting around to replacing it.

    I had a great time riding rigid SS, however I did miss gears a handful of times when riding to the trails over longer distances. This will also be my only bike so versatility is a factor.

    I'm a little confused on the pricing of these 2 bikes. For 200 dollars more you get the shifting components and recon fork which seems to be worth well over that amount. Is the SS overpriced or is the El Mar 3 just a better value?

    I actually picked up the geared version yesterday, but I'm still a little torn. I loved the rigid SS experience but I wasn't able pass on the extra bells and whistles at such small price increase. Am I missing something? Does the SS over better components in certain areas to justify the price?

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    TicTac, I will be curious to see the responses to this thread. On a weekend ride a friend and I were talking about this same issue of the Mariachi SS (and also Spec Crave SL and Trek Superfly SS) vs. their geared/suspended fork counterparts. What is one paying for? Obviously the SS is a niche item but still...
    I would be curious to hear how you like the ride of your El Mar though. I have not seen these at any demo days recently and it seems to be a popular ride here on the forums.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Team Honeybadger View Post
    TicTac, I will be curious to see the responses to this thread. On a weekend ride a friend and I were talking about this same issue of the Mariachi SS (and also Spec Crave SL and Trek Superfly SS) vs. their geared/suspended fork counterparts. What is one paying for? Obviously the SS is a niche item but still...
    I would be curious to hear how you like the ride of your El Mar though. I have not seen these at any demo days recently and it seems to be a popular ride here on the forums.
    Looking at the specs a little closer I see some minor differences in brakes/headset/rims but I still don't see how this nearly offsets a suspension + shifters & derailleurs. Are the brakes substantially better on the SS?

    As far as the El Mar goes in general, I haven't had a lot of bikes to compare to but I loved mine, enough to buy a second one. I'm 5'-11" on a medium so it's slightly cramped but I feel comfortable and in control. Steel is a little heavy but I find it's well worth the compliance.

  4. #4
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    The ss has better wheels, headset, brakes and hubs, but all just barely. A Deore hub vs a Salsa 2.... meh.

    But at least you can throw on a cog and rip off the shifty bits and still SS! You got the best of both worlds.

  5. #5
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    For anyone interested I asked Salsa about it and they explained the SS does have some parts that would cost more than you might expect (rigid fork, SS specific hubset) and the OEM level pricing on the Recon/Shifting components is quite a bit less than what you'd find purchasing them yourself.

    So I suppose the SS does set up does come at a somewhat of a premium due to uniqueness of parts

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