Special Report: Specialized 2013 29″er Product Launch- Stay Tuned!

Grannygear is riding and ogling the latest 29″er goodness from Specialized right now in Utah. We expect more details in a few days, but here is a short tease of something new from the “Big S” that you will be seeing on Specialized 29″ers and aftermarket someday soon.

Here we have a sneak peek at the “Chisel”, a carbon fiber fork which will appear on the Specialized Stumpjumper Expert Carbon Evo R model for 2013. This should also be available aftermarket as well.

Although we don’t have Grannygear’s complete notes from the Press launch, we can see that it appears to be a 1 1/2″ to 1 1/8th” tapered type steerer and appears to be suspension corrected for 100mm travel suspension foks, but we’ll get confirmation on that from Grannygear later.

In other tidbits: There will be a Epic Marathon model again in 2013 along with a Stumpjumper Marathon hard tail model. These will fall between the S-Works and Expert model levels in the range.

There will also be a new Roval Control Carbon wheelset that will be based upon DT Swiss hub internals, have convertible hubs front and rear, and target weight is said to be 1580gms. All for a price of $1200.00USD. (!!) Roval Carbon wheels appear to be getting more aggressive in the area of pricing for 2013.

Specialized also states that they will no longer be doing any 26″ Cambers, and the 29 inch wheeled Camber will have a new “concentric linkage at rear shock lighter and stiffer. OS28 front hub interface on lighter Fox forks”, according to our notes from Grannygear.

Stay tuned for details, a ride report, and more coming soon.

UPDATE!!!!  Yes, Grannygear here at Snowbird in Utah where the air is thin and the WIFI is even thinner, so no pic uploads for now as I need to sleep sometime….UPDATE to the UPDATE!  Pics are happening!   But, I will toss out all kinds of things I have been told and later add more details like pricing, weights, etc.  A  lot of this stuff is pretty new and sometimes the info can trickle in.  Here goes.

Well, you saw the Chisel fork and I have been told the weight is “competitive” with the Niner Carbon fork.  It is set at a 480mm A to C height and an offset of 47mm.  The designers did not want to end up with too steep a HT angle if this fork was added to something like a Stumpy HT so it is in that ‘suspension ready’ range.  As well, I asked about the target of stiffness VS. compliance and I got the feeling that the fork was not going to be a cushy ride but was tuned to accentuate an aggressive, racy approach.  Of course the riding is yet to come and I think we will get on one and see.

Some of the big hit bikes, no 29ers that I know of, are coming with Cane Creek rear air shocks.  Interesting.  The new Carbon S Works Enduro 26er for instance.  Also, Magura brakes are spec’d on lots of bikes this year including many 29ers as you will see as I post pics.

In the wheels arena there are two items of note…the addition of a Roval Traverse All Mountain 29er wheel in alloy (I bet a carbon one is not far off) with a 24mm inner width and a 1860g weight…tubeless ready of course and very convertible including QR15 and 20mm…and the groundbreaking budget Roval Control 29 Carbon wheel set priced at $1200.00 (budget is relative here) but at 1580g and based on a DT Swiss DT350 hub and a convertible front hub, well, it is a deal.  As well, this rim does away with the bead hook.  Really?  Yeah, really.  Also, there is a choice of graphics now on the higher end Roval carbon wheels so if you did not like the red treatment, there is now a more subtle white package.  Look for Specialized to promote Roval  more in the next year.  They really are fine performing wheels on any bike they are appropriate for.  Oh yeah…no more rim tape.  I have had issues with the blue tape Specialized used and so have they, so now all wheels use a replaceable rim strip.  It looks like a good solution, being a tough plastic rather than a rubber strip.

The Camber is the focus of a lot of development energy for 2013.  The line is expanded with a lower priced model now.  Also, there are no more 26″ versions.  Another small wheel bites the dust.  The Camber Comp gets a new M5 alloy frame and the pivots at the rear linkage on the Cambers are a Concentric pivot that is stiffer and lighter.  Stiffer and lighter is good.  Auto Sag keeps on keeping on and now is found on Rock Shox equipped bikes, Cambers included.  The Fox forks on some of the Cambers are a custom blend for Specialized and are roughly 80g lighter as well as adding a full OS28 hub interface where the old versions were OS24 on Fox forks.

Tires…29ers get some size and tread changes.  The Purgatory, one of my favorite Trailbike tires, for the front anyway, gets a redesign much like the Fast Trak did with Finite Analysis computer wizardry and bumps up from a 2.2 to a 2.3.  The 2.4 version remains.  I rode a 2.3 Purg on trail and it was just as good as I expected it to be on the rocky and dry trails at Snowbird, but the new one gains some volume and is 23% more efficient rolling down that trail.  Excellent.  No weights yet.  The Ground Control goes to a 2.3 now and 29er riders can get a 2.3 Butcher and a 2.0 Storm to go.  And, not to be left out, the fast Renegade tire is now in a 2.3 which looked like a very interesting SS tire for a bit of flotation on a minimal tread.  Maybe a Midwest trail killer?  From left to right:  2.3 Purgatory, 2.3 Butcher, 2.0 Storm, 2.3 Renegade, 2.3 Ground Control.

The Marathon is back, both in a Stumpy HT and an Epic.  More on that later, but the Epic Marathon will be a very popular bike, not because it is so cheap, etc (maybe a $7200.00 bike), but because it is spec’d very smart and yet very high end and sits below the Uber-Bike S Works and the more menial Expert model.  You get XO, carbon wheels, a Brain SID fork, Mini Brain shock (no Kashima), carbon bar, XO Grip Shift, Magura brakes…sweet, sweet bike.  This is the high end bike I would build from parts if I could and I bet a lot of well heeled buyers will see it that way too.  Oh, all carbon framed Epics that used to have an all alu rear section now get a carbon seat stay.  Nice.

The Stumpy HT Expert Carbon Evo R is another bike I think will be sold out.  At under 20 lbs in a 19″ and a price in the $4100.00 range, the 2.3 Renegades on Control Alloy wheels (DT350 rear hub), the Chisel fork, S Works carbon h-bar, 1×10 XO and a carbon crank to match the carbon frame set…well, that is a fun looking bike for those who seek a fast all rigid ride.  71.5/73.5 angles, CS at 435mm.  Zoom Zoom.  The yellow/orange-ish red/black graphics are a love/hate thing though.  Personally, yuck.  But I liked the same treatment on another Stumpy HT in bright Green Lantern green so go figure.  The yellow though may appeal to ya.

That’s all for now.  Much more later…bike rides, Womens 29ers, etc.  Here is one more pic of the new Stumpy HT Expert carbon EVO R critter up for ya.

 Next:  Women’s 29ers.

Not to be left behind, the ladies get some new scoots as well, but no expected FS 29er…yet.  Yeah, it’s coming so keep a look out later this year.  I expect it to be an enthusiast level FS model, so we shall wait and see.  Meanwhile, the big news is the Fate S Works, carbon of course, with XTR shifting, brakes, S Works crank, Control SL Roval carbon wheels, Fast Trak S works tires…WHEW!  Very nice, and based off of the bikes that the team was riding last season.  Check the cable routing on the Fate frame at the head tube and how it exits at the top tube.  Cool.  All Fates get Fast Trak tires this year.  Shown below is the S Works, Fate Expert, and the JETT lineup, which is expanded this year.  Oh yeah, no more 26″ wheel JETTS.  Another axe falls on tiny wheels for XC bikes.  The Myka line continues on as well.


Not to be ignored are the Carve and Stumpjumper hard tails.  I rode one of each and those reports will wait for later, but for now some details and pics.  First off, Carve.  Now all Carves get a 100mm fork and those forks are upgraded across the line, so now you will find better forks like Rockshox Recon Golds, Rebas, and a Fox on the Pro version.  The head tube was shortened off the bottom to keep the stand over and angles the same form the 80mm versions.  Carve is targeted at a budget racer or a weekend rider that wants a performance bike, but does not need a Stumpy level package.  Slightly longer in wheel base, the Carves  have a lot of appeal and some nice improvements.  They get their own wheel set in the Carve rim saving 100g.  The Comp version alone is 3.6lbs lighter, now has 2×10 SRAM drivetrain and that Recon Gold fork with a remote lock out, all for $1500.00 bucks give or take a bit…still being finalized.  The weight of a 19″ version (no pedals) was 26.38lbs.  Not bad at all.

Another very cool bike is the Carve SL with the Chisel fork in single speed guise.  It converts to 1×10 (no accommodation for a front der) including the rear hub by removing the spacers, has a 2.3 Ground Control front tire to offset the rigid fork and weighs 22lbs in a 19″ size…all for $1100 bucks.  The split shell type EBB has been a proven performer and does the tensioning duties.  So the Carve now has the SS, a Comp, Expert, and Pro models.

On the Stumpjumper side, what has me jazzed after a test ride on an S Works version is the Fact 8 M Stumpjumper single speed frame.  PF30 BB, sweet little sliders to tension, no consideration for gears at all, tapered HT, etc.  The ride on the S Works version with gears was amazingly smooth showing how carbon is getting better and better.  This SS frame is slightly heavier and a bit less fancy in the carbon lay up, but if it is 95% as good it should be an amazing SS ride.  That is on my serious wish list for next season’s endurance events.  $2200.00 bucks gets you the frame, headset, and seat post/collar.  Weight is 1300g for a 17.5″ not including seat post or seat post collar.

More to come, test rides in the trails of Snowbird, some video interviews, and who knows what else.