BIKE TEST – SPECIALIZED STUMPJUMPER FSR comp EVO 650B
Words & Photos: Steve Jones
Specialized have always channeled the Stumpjumper Evo as their go to agro trail bike. This is because the Enduro range of bikes have everything covered when things get slightly more involved. The Stumpy Evo is very much a favourite both in 26 and 29 inch wheel options so it was pretty interesting to get a third wheel size in the mix. We hit the trails pretty quickly on this one, here’s our first thoughts…
OUT OF THE BOX
The Stumpy Evo line of bikes now incorporates this the 650B wheel version. Compare a few geometry numbers for starters (Specialized figures):-
STUMPY EVO 26 – 150/150 travel 1186mm WB/420mm CS/ 335mm BB/67 HA
STUMPY EVO 650 – 155/160 travel 1193mm WB/435mm CS/327mm BB/68 HA
STUMPY EVO 29 – 138/140 travel 1211mm WB/455mm CS/ 335mm BB/ 68 HA
First thoughts are that the Morgan Hill boys have dropped the bottom bracket by a fairish amount yet not altered the head angle compared to the 29 bike. Maybe this is because they foresee riders bolting on a big old Pike as an upgrade. Anyhow its nearly 20mm lower than a Foxy XR (140mm rear with 160mm fork) and maybe the Revelation might not be quite enough on this bike. In terms of other components it’s the usual story of stem being too long so we fitted a 35mm Hope onto the bike, cables need a spot of tidying but otherwise the SRAM mix of X7 and X9 with Shimano braking is all pretty workmanlike.
Having just done a shit load of tests on enduro bikes recently I’m immediately drawing on comparisons to what I’ve been riding, albeit pretty high spec bikes. Then I’m also thinking about the superb Stumpy EVO 29, one of the best trail bikes around but so much less of a brute than the steamrollering Enduro 29. Might this be the bike for riders not prepared to take on the 29 mindset and those realistic enough to know they don’t need a charging 160mm bike?
OFF THE HILL
With so many sub thirty-pound 160mm bikes now available my thoughts whilst pedaling to the top of the hill still revolved around as to who this bike was aimed at. Those not prepared to make the switch to 29 were my first thoughts.
The problem is I have massive respect for bikes like the 138mm Stumpy Evo 29 and Trek Remedy 9 29 in so much as they are the perfect bikes to apply to the trails that I ride from my house, and this seems to be the story I’m getting from many riders. It has to be relevant.
The other problem for 150mm also lies in the shift to even longer travel 165mm and 170mm travel lightweight bikes such as the YT Capra, Scott Genius LT and as we saw the other day the new Santa Cruz Nomad. Bikes built for charging, yet ones that you easily ride all day. Last week I rode the 140mm Cannondale Trigger and 160mm Jekyll thinking why the hell bother with the former.
So where does that leave the dear old Stumpy. As a trail bike. Always was, always will be. My issue is that the Stumpy Evo 29 is relevant to my trails and rolls over the ground quicker, AND is better in winter conditions, whilst the Enduro 29, particularly the S-Works is simply the Great White Shark of enduro – nothing can touch it. It’s strong, it’s fast, and it will tear you apart. In other words it’s complicated for the 650 Stumpy.