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  1. #1
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    UK - 5 spot vs flux

    I've searched / monitored this forum for a while and I'm still not convinced which frame would best suit my needs between a 5 spot and flux for UK trail riding.

    90% of my riding is done on the trails in South Wales (Cwm Carn, Afan etc) - this includes steep rooty / rocky climbs, fireroad climbs, rocky and smooth single-track, but no jumps (max 1-2 foot drop offs).

    Not intending to race, most of my rides are between 1.5 to 4 hours (usually around 2 hours).

    Currently riding a medium spec fsr 120 stumpy with xc build.

    My main points of concern are - would the 5 spot be too plush for most of my trail riding, and how the flux would fare being ridden aggressively through rocky single-track (over a long period).

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doogle
    I've searched / monitored this forum for a while and I'm still not convinced which frame would best suit my needs between a 5 spot and flux for UK trail riding.

    90% of my riding is done on the trails in South Wales (Cwm Carn, Afan etc) - this includes steep rooty / rocky climbs, fireroad climbs, rocky and smooth single-track, but no jumps (max 1-2 foot drop offs).

    Not intending to race, most of my rides are between 1.5 to 4 hours (usually around 2 hours).

    Currently riding a medium spec fsr 120 stumpy with xc build.

    My main points of concern are - would the 5 spot be too plush for most of my trail riding, and how the flux would fare being ridden aggressively through rocky single-track (over a long period).

    Any thoughts?
    I'd get the 5 spot, If you aren't racing you'd be better off with more travel, it can still be built up at well under 30lbs, stick some strong light wheels on it and you can ride all the singletrack you like, all day and you will never look back. Plenty of people ride the Merida events on them and you only really notice the extra travel when you do the odd drop or jump.

  3. #3
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    Go for the Spot

    I had a Spec FSR 120 Pro before getting a Spot and find the latter much more adaptable to a wide range of trails.

    I live in the south of England (Windsor) and find the Spot as good as the Spec on climbs, such as those in the rolling Chilterns. However, where you really notice the difference is on rocky routes like Afan, Coed, the Lakes, etc, where the Spot is in a different league both on climbs and descents.

    I haven't ridden the Flux, but given that it has identical travel to the FSR, I would have to say go for the Spot.

  4. #4
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    Steep climbs, long hours in the saddle, fireroad climbs, rocky and smooth trails, no big air.

    Seem thats EXACLTY what the FLUX was intended for.

    People seem to think the Flux is a pure race bike. Its not. Its angles are more slack and its wheelbase is on average an inch and a half longer than the typical pure 4x4 racer. Its got stability up the ying yang...at least thats what over 10 Flux owners have told me (mine's still being built up.)

    So do you want a faster, lighter bike and will give up a bit on the screaming downhills or do you want a beefier, slower ride (a bit) and be able to roll over the roughies better going down?

    Do you want the X5 or do you want the 550i?

    In the interest of full disclosure, Im still deciding myself. But I have to speak out here because after speaking to DT himself and a good amount of Flux owners from all over the U.S., I think a lot of folks on this board are pigeonholing the Flux. It can do it all.
    Last edited by Rouleur321; 11-24-2005 at 07:52 AM.

  5. #5
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    Given the parameters you have laid out, it is looking like a Flux for you. In my experience, I have had a Burner which is roughly the same weight as the Spot, but the Spot pedals better. I now have a Flux and the half pound or so weight difference is a bit subtle, but I think it's a feature that becomes beneficial on long rides, like you have mentioned. I do rides up to four to five hours and 3.5 on a local trail with no breaks. The Flux is a pleasure to ride and very efficient. We are rooty, some rocks, and few drop offs. I would also throw an email to David Turner or Gregg and also list out your weight. They could have a different idea.

    The biggest part of choosing a bike is honestly listing what you'll do 99% of the time and pick for it and then not exceeding the frame's capability for the other 1%.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpeedThrills
    Steep climbs, long hours in the saddle, fireroad climbs, rocky and smooth trails, no big air.

    Seem thats EXACLTY what the FLUX was intended for.

    People seem to think the Flux is a pure race bike. Its not. Its angles are more slack and its wheelbase is on average an inch and a half longer than the typical pure 4x4 racer. Its got stability up the ying yang...at least thats what over 10 Flux owners have told me (mine's still being built up.)

    So do you want a faster, lighter bike and will give up a bit on the screaming downhills or do you want a beefier, slower ride (a bit) and be able to roll over the roughies better going down?

    Do you want the X5 or do you want the 550i?


    In the interest of full disclosure, Im still deciding myself. But I have to speak out here because after speaking to DT himself and a good amount of Flux owners from all over the U.S., I think a lot of folks on this board are pigeonholing the Flux. It can do it all.
    I own a Flux, but if I didn't race I would have a spot. The Flux is a tad more lively in my opinion (I have ridden my friends spot for a couple of days) I just felt that for enduros and marathons the flux was more appropriate. That said I can also ride my flux at 7 Stanes and it will cope fine, I felt that the Spot was better for the odd drop or clumsy moment, when i needed the extra travel.

  7. #7
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    or ...

    You can look at the Ventana El Saltamontes (4x4). Looks beefier than the flux but not as much as the spot.

    Don't mean to jump on the Tuner forum. They are all good bikes

  8. #8
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    As far as I know, the El Salt is as beefy, if not beefier (weight wise) than the Spot in a 4x4 package.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpeedThrills
    Steep climbs, long hours in the saddle, fireroad climbs, rocky and smooth trails, no big air.

    Seem thats EXACLTY what the FLUX was intended for.

    People seem to think the Flux is a pure race bike. Its not. Its angles are more slack and its wheelbase is on average an inch and a half longer than the typical pure 4x4 racer. Its got stability up the ying yang...at least thats what over 10 Flux owners have told me (mine's still being built up.)

    So do you want a faster, lighter bike and will give up a bit on the screaming downhills or do you want a beefier, slower ride (a bit) and be able to roll over the roughies better going down?

    Do you want the X5 or do you want the 550i?

    In the interest of full disclosure, Im still deciding myself. But I have to speak out here because after speaking to DT himself and a good amount of Flux owners from all over the U.S., I think a lot of folks on this board are pigeonholing the Flux. It can do it all.
    Great points about the Flux. I sometimes forget that it really is a great trailbike, along with being a very capable race bike. It really depends on what is more important to you. The Spot is a ton of fun on the the descents, but it is not as lively a pedaler (though the difference is small). If your rides involve going quickly up and almost as quickly down, a Flux is great. If you rides are slightly slower up and bombing down, go for the Spot.

    One other note: I have had a Flux for almost a year (I got a '04 Interbike Demo) and really, really like it. I've also had a 5" RFX for about 4 years and it was great for the more difficult terrain, but it is not a climber by any stretch. I picked up an '05 5 Spot about a month ago and transferred all of the parts from the RFX to it here. The Spot has all the descending capability of the 5" RFX with most of the climbing ability of the Flux. It really is a great do-it-all bike that is the bike you'll want when you discover that you want to go bigger.

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=2TurnersNotEnough]Great points about the Flux. I sometimes forget that it really is a great trailbike, along with being a very capable race bike. It really depends on what is more important to you. The Spot is a ton of fun on the the descents, but it is not as lively a pedaler (though the difference is small). If your rides involve going quickly up and almost as quickly down, a Flux is great. If you rides are slightly slower up and bombing down, go for the Spot.


    I'm a UK / Flux rider and can share my 1yr experience with this bike

    For reference, I haven't owned a spot but have owned larger travel bikes previously (Rocky's). My Flux is set up with Vanilla fox at 100mm. It did have a talas but the coil fork is just so plush, linear and provides full travel when needed. This fork, plus beefier M4's on front, larger volume tyres and shorter stem creates (for me) a great balance of abilities. These slightly more "aggressive trail" componets suit the bike and it's ability to be set up how you want it - a well known ability of the spot also. First and foremost it is a strong trail bike that is a blast with seat down for the relatively few occasions that my riding needs a backside over rear wheel. It is also a joy on any climb and the extra zip that you get from the frame angles, bb height, top tube length and 4x4 suspension makes single track the best fun I've had on any bike. Mud clearance is excellent (all potential UK buyers note) and bushings are the business for durability and squeek free suspension movement after months in gritty mud

    The other win for me is that the flux is kind to tired (empty!) legs on a long ride, or when daylight's nearly gone and you're the wrong side of the trail. The bike flatters both your strength and tecnhical abilities. It's strong enough for inadvertant drops, and balancing pressures and rebound in rp3 will give you the options between baby head comfort/control and climbing speed

    My experience is that a 4" bike with DTs geometry makes for a great all day trail bike. You'll enjoy it, as you would a spot. They're two frames are different, but not so far apart as forums sometime suggest for the riding you seem to do in UK. You'll enjoy either of course

  11. #11
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    My view would be to go for the 5 Spot, you can build them up around 28lb mark which is fine for all day riding and with the longer fork the front end feels more stable when hammering over bumps.

  12. #12
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    Uk flux owner - previously 5spot

    I can tell you this after 3500 miles on my 10 month old flux - I would at the moment not ride anything else.

    I owned a 5spot for 6months before that - and had the flux been available at the time I would have gone for the flux instead.

    I have raced a fair bit on it as well as performed long rides (yesterday 67 miles) - the bike is awesome - it's been said many times in this thread that the flux is the spot's younger edgier sibling - it feels much livelier up hill as well. I felt the spot was well planted but felt a bit lethargic on steep climbs.

    The reality is now with the rp3 - there isn't a massive difference between the two, but if it swings it the flux is a bit cheaper and looks super sharp in its anno.

  13. #13
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    I've been on my 5 Spot for almost two years and I'm very happy with it, but that still doesn't stop me from lusting after a Flux from time to time.

    My other bike is a fully rigid Kona and I occasionally feel like I should be riding something in between the two bikes. Basically I feel like I'm abusing my Kona too much, and not abusing my Spot quite enough.

    Having said that, I think I'm a fairly fit climber, so I don't mind the extra weight of the Spot, and I'm not so cocky on the descents, so it's nice to have the comfort of the Spot there.

    I've often heard that the Flux can comfortably handle 2-3 foot drops whereas that Spot is good for 5 footers. Well, I'm still just doing 3 foot drops, but I'm doing them quite badly, and I think the Spot would be much more forgiving of screw ups than the Flux.

    On the other hand, mmmmmm, Flux, nice, drool drool.

    Sorry, not much help here.

    Duncan
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