Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Review
Manufacturer –Specialized Bicycle, Morgan Hill, CA
Model –Stumpjumper FSR EVO
With a Sram 2×10 drivetrain, carbon cranks, Fox Shox suspension and a 67 degree head tube angle – Specialized’s Stumpjumper EVO is a swiss-army-of-a-bike meant to handle many different disciplines of mountain biking. Offering a laterally stiff frame, Specialized also took into consideration the EVOs aesthetics and design, making sure the bike looked beautifully mean on all angles. While the build from Specialized is technically sound and should please most riders, the EVOs “stock” Specialized Purgatory tires were slightly sketchy to say at best in loose over hard-pack terrain.
Bottom Line –
If you’re looking for a full-suspension All-Mountain ride that you can cruise down the steep stuff and grind up hills with, the Specialized Stumpjumper EVO is the bike to go after. Add a dropper post and change out the tires to your favorite set of rubbers and you’ll be ready for any type of bike-shredding action.
Continental Trail King UST Tire 2.2 Review
Manufacturer – Continental Tires America, Fort Mill, SC
Model – Trail King 2.2 UST
Sometime last year the Continental Trail King, formerly known as the Rubber Queen not only had a change in name, but also in sex. But while these changes might seem drastic, don’t be fooled – this is very much the same tire in pattern, thread and compound.
The Trail King comes in two sizes, 2.2 and 2.4 to suite most rider’s needs. What most won’t expect with the new name though is the extra girth these tires carry, with the 2.4 version surpassing most 2.5″ tires in width and the 2.2 coming a tad wider than most 2.3″ tires on the market. But before you argue added rotational mass and weight, these tires more than make up for their extra doughnut-like appearance in bump compliance, traction, and rolling speed. I’m on my third set and will be running these tires on my future builds. The normal and UST versions both mix Continental’s Black Chili Compound, which from observation creates a tacky tire that’s firm on the sidewall, but wears really well. I have over 400 miles on my last set and they’re still good to go.
If you’re looking for a do-it-all tire, the Continental Trail King is hard to beat. From shale, to hard pack, to boulders, these tires can grip with the best of them. Let’s also not overlook the fact that these are German made, and we know that German’s don’t mess sh!t up. Breaks loose as much as you want, and recovers better than you expect. The Trail King is as predictable as they come. Share the wealth of berm ripping fun, and feel like a king anytime you’re out on a ride.
Specialized Pitch Frame Review
Manufacturer – Specialized Bicycle Components, Morgan Hill, CA
Model – Pitch Comp
Price -$1650 MSRP
Specialized’s Pitch caters to riders who are looking for an All Mountain ride that is capable of climbing and descending quickly without the added weight and price of a longer travel frame. With 140mm of travel, the bike offers a plush ride even on rough rock gardens and square-edged hits. Although the Pitch has 5 inches of travel on tap out back, the bike still maintains the climbing ability of an XC traveled frame with Specialized’s patented FSR suspension system – minimizing bob during pedal strokes, yet soaking up the terrain for maximum traction at all times.
A nimble bike that can descend with longer travel rigs, the Pitch is right at home for all-day rides with thousands of feet of climbing and thousands of feet of chunky descent thrown in. Compliment it with an adjustable fork and an adjustable seatpost system for added efficiency and control for the ups and downs.
Stan’s Tire Sealant Review
Manufacturer – NoTubes, Big Flats, NY
Model – Tire Sealant
A workshop staple for many riders, Stan’s Tire Sealant has saved many from losing precious seconds in racing, hiking their bikes down the hill or making their riding buddies wait as they change a flat. Stan’s solution has been around for years and has seen use in many venues from National’s to grass root races. Pros and weekend warriors alike have used Stan’s sealing effectiveness in preventing flats due to thorns, goat heads even nails and glass.
Pulling out 16 goatheads from my tire after riding through a patch solidifies the effectiveness of Stan’s. The solution – plain and simple works, and I use it even on ust tubeless set-ups for the added confidence and time-saving for when I will not need to put a tube in my tire should I flat. After using similar products I find myself going back to Stan’s as my go-to tire sealant. Pour two scoops worth and ride away, its even helped keep pressure and re-seat my tires after a pinch flat situation.
Transition TransAm Frame Review
Manufacturer – Transition Bicycle Company, Ferndale, WA
Model – TransAM Frame
Transition Bike Company’s TransAM frame was designed to be a well-rounded hardtail that is good for bar runs to multi-day epics. The steel frame is quiet no matter how chunky the terrain is. While this bike shines on buff singletrack and climbs like a goat, it is by no means a flimsy XC bike. Slack, smooth and stiff are just a few of the noticeable characteristics this frame offers. Transition includes a headset and seatpost clamp with frame. The campy style headset is smooth, and durable. The seatclamp on the other hand lost its clamping power early in the game, causing the seatpost to slip while in the seated position.
Bottom Line –
If you’re looking for a hardtail to replace a quiver of bikes, this is the frame to get. It’s slack, it’s steel and it’s a deal. The iscg tabs allows you to run it as a 1×9 with a bash/guide, and having the ability to run a 160mm fork means you can shred the gnar with confidence.
Feel free to put your opinion on this frame below.