First Ride: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR 6Fattie

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Specialized went all-in on 27plus bikes for the 2016 model year with 6Fattie versions of the Stumpjumper and Rhyme, as well as dedicated 6Fattie hardtail models for men and women, called the Ruse and Fuse.

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Here at Crankworx Whistler we took our first ride aboard the top-of-the-line S-Works Stumpjumper FSR 6Fattie with 150 mm of travel up front and 135 mm out back. All this with 27.5 x 3.0-inch tires on 30 mm-wide rims. Another number to consider is the $8,600 price tag of this S-Works model. However, the aluminum Comp model rings in at $3,500.

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We’ve posted previously about the new 29er and 27.5 Stumpjumper tech details, so head on over here for the full scoop. For now, we’re going to focus on the 6Fattie.

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The 6Fattie shares its front triangle with the Stumpjumper 29, but the Boost 148 aluminum swingarm and plus-specific version of Fox’s 34 fork are unique to the 6Fattie model.

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Our thoughts

Both Adam and I rode the bike today and had pretty good conversation about so we thought we’d share:

Adam: So we got to ride the 6Fattie today on the Hey Bud trail, which was the first stage of the EWS race here in Whistler this week. Justin, you and I were a bit skeptical of this new tire size, but I think it’s safe to say we came away impressed. What was one factor that stood out to you?

Justin: Traction, without a doubt. I couldn’t believe how well this bike hooked up on loose terrain.There were times I’d have my ass on the back tire for fear of going over the bars, and you know what? I could have stop in the middle of that downhill to eat a sandwich. What jumped out at you?

Adam: I think the biggest surprise was just how normal it felt. If I was riding blindfolded (which I only recommend at SSWC, by the way) it would have been hard to distinguish it from a 29er, except for the traction you mentioned (especially braking) and this sort of “safety net” feeling of stability. I’m not 100 percent sold that it’s “better,” but it is certainly confidence inspiring.

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Justin: You’re all about the safety net, Newman. I walked away convinced the 6Fattie will be “better” for a lot of riders simply as a result of the huge fun-factor. Sure, might feel a little slower while climbing, but if you can turn the pedals over you could climb a tree. In rough terrain, the 6Fattie will roll through terrain it simply shouldn’t. Descending, it’s a hoot due to all that traction. Who do you think would like this bike?

Adam: Haha, I need that safety net! I think the kind of folks who will enjoy these bikes are the kind of people like us who are not shredding in the 99th percentile, but are more interested in having fun than going fast. The tires were a bit of a question mark going in, but the Ground Controls 27.5×3.0 on our demo bikes performed better than expected despite the super round profile.

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Justin: Agreed. I was really eyeing up the Purgatory tire on the front of some of those other bikes. Wonder what other tires they have in the works? In general, I’d have to agree with you. There’s a stumpjumper for everyone; 6Fattie for fun-loving, optimistic types, 27.5 for shred-bros doing tricks, and 29 for speed-racers.

Adam: Aside from the bike, I also wanted to give a special shout-out to the new Command Post IRcc dropper. It has internal cable routing but uses a basic shift cable and the actuation lever is the best I’ve ever used. Plus instead of the classic Command Post’s three positions, it now has 10 so you can get it just right.

What do you think?

Is 27plus going to roll over the mountain bike scene? Or is it full of (hot) air? Let us know in the comments below.



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