What The Fuck Were They Thinking Wednesday – Specialized Epic 29er

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With all the Tour coverage going on, it’s odd that a large bike company may pick these three weeks in July to release the most recent version of a mountain bike line.  Why not wait a couple more weeks for all the Tour hoopla to die down, then get all the media attention you want of your new fancy projects?  Or maybe the new version of a product line is completely fucked out, and you know it will be ridiculed by the public.  That’s what I think happened with the new Specialzed Epic 29er line released earlier this week.


Before I go balls deep into this new Specialized Epic 29er, I just want to chime in that it appears that fatbikes are officially the new fixies.  Now that Specialized is making their own fatbike (to capitalize hand over fist once again), the fatbike has become an accessory.  I hope the guys from Surly, Salsa, 616, etc ride their collective asses over to that beacon of deuche Specialized calls a home office, and kick the company in the collective balls.  Now onto the new Epic 29er line.  I wish I could forgive Mr. LVB from VeloSnooze for writing the article and taking the pictures as an arm of the Specialized Marketing Co., but I can’t.  I would like to think I can call Logan a friend (although maybe not after this writing), and I understand that he is just doing his job.  But every word printed seems like it was written with the Specialized PR Person reading over his shoulder, making sure he hit all the high points without saying anything negative.

How about we start with the prices.  10 grand for a fucking bike?  I get that it’s a top of the line World Cup worthy race bike that the best of the best will pedal to victory, but 10 grand for a bike?  To paraphrase the great George Carlin, “I need to drop 10 grand on a bike like to need an infected scrotum!”  As Big Jonny put it in an email, he could get a used Jeep, or motorcycle, or better yet take the whole family on multiple trips to DisneyLand  for less money.  Kinda puts that amount of coin in perspective.  For less money you can get a lower-end model with a different parts spec, and keep the tab just below 4 grand.  However, the $3800 for the “bottom of the line” of the Epic 29er line is still a big chunk of change.  If I had a spare 4 grand lying around I’d probably develop a drug habit before buying one of these new whips.


Next, and the part that pissed me off the most was the new SWAT system.  Apparently keeping a tube, lever, and multi tool in your jersey pocket is soo June 2013.  Now you can stash it all in a giant box that is going to rattle around while attached to your frame.  Rest assured because it’s a Specialized product it will break in no time, but don’t worry they will warranty it no questions asked.  According to the article, Specialized spent three years to develop the SWAT system.  Now in about three seconds anyone with half a brain could come up with the idea to use some electrical tape to secure a tube, lever, and multi tool to the top of your stem or back of your seatpost.  If you want to get all classy and drop some money to make your gear secure on the bike, why not get an Awesome Strap from BackCountry Research.  It will cost a whole lot less, is easily transferable between bikes, and doesn’t make you look like a giant dick.


Reading this article and seeing these photos makes me think that this could have been a glitch in the VeloSnooze server, and this story intended for April 1.  Apparently not, this shit is real and proves that Specialized can literally just do whatever the fuck they want.  I’m sure this new line of Epic 29er will sell like hot cakes to the masses, and Specialized will make enough money that the toilet paper they used at the corporate HQ will be made out of 20 dollar bills.

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About 40 Hands

A fan of riding bikes with one gear, malt liquor, riding without knowing how many miles I’ve covered, and strip clubs that let you bring your own keg. I typically have a stupid grin on my face, it is because deep down I know that no matter what, my mom thinks I’m cool. Denver, Colorado, USA

59 Replies to “What The Fuck Were They Thinking Wednesday – Specialized Epic 29er”

  1. There is so much fail pointed out in this post, except for the Awesome Strap. You can’t buy a better place to keep your shit. I would buy a $500 bike and $9500 worth of Awesome Straps instead of that Special Ed nonsense.

  2. As a wrench in a Specy shop I cannot even afford the godamn shit being pushed as pro deal on these bikes. I am stoked about it. 10 G for a bike?
    Better be Orange and have a Throttle.

    So cannot wait to fill a closet with all the warranty SWAT shit. Three to four weeks before your “BRAIN” shock can be serviced, seems about right – who the fuck wants to ride in the summer anyway?

  3. The marketing is what you pay for when you buy a Specialized. I too work in a Specialized shop, and believe you me “satisfaction guaranteed” is bullshit. I’ve seen them turn down warranty claims for frames with obvious cracks in them that were certainly not from rider abuse. If you want to buy a bike from a company who stands by their products and supports not only their customers but their dealers, buy a Trek. Fuck Specialized, I have never and will not ever own one.

  4. this angry little elf review is drivel…
    – Specialized always releases bikes in July, their Dealer event is during the tour every year
    – Getting angry at a brand over $10K bikes is odd, why not bash Scott like the brand in your awesome strap photo. They’ve been selling Genius bikes above the $10K range for years (also not made in the US)
    – you also made a point that you were going Balls Deep on the review but really only bitched about the price and one removable part for storage, never really touched on the rest of the bike

    have another drink hater.

  5. What brand of computer was this cry baby writing from? Apple? A Dell using the worlds most used operating system, Microsoft? Ever had a starbucks coffee? He probably wrote the review while drunk off of Absolut vodka. Why all the hate because a company has good marketing, brand recognition, and DOES stand by their product? Just go ride your bike and STFU. Oh, and as for the price tag? Stay in school kids!! Don’t be hatin…

  6. You have to charge $10k for bikes so you can afford to keep your legal team on staff. I mean, you have to protect the “Epic” trademark by suing frame bag manufacturers and one-person wheel building shops into submission…

    I won’t even buy a Specialized tube, never mind a SWAT box equipped doctorbyke.

  7. Hate away.

    When the big companies tire of stroking their own egos with .02% weight savings, .00012% stiffness increase, .045% suspension efficiency improvements, 75% price increase, and 0% US based manufacturing, I’ll still be riding my bike.

    Bikes are for riding, fluff jobs are for porn stars.

    Spec and Trek can bite me. Never owned a Trek, own a bunch of older Spec back when bikes still mattered, as opposed to price based marketing, but I am so glad I got out from shops that deal with that schlock before the marketing juggernaut had really taken over our collective conscience.

    Had a guy call me, asking what brands I carry, that were ridden in the TDF. “None”. Click. Nice, stay classy dude.

    Marketing strategy and implementation complete, another food source for the Borg, ready for uptake…….

  8. You’re right Bud…S Works isn’t for everyone…Maybe if you had more of an objective opinion some of your points would be better received… While I think you do have a case for some of this, it’s lost in your venomous rant…if you’re gonna write reviews at least be professional and put the points out there: the good, bad & the ugly… Stay positive & Keep ridin’…whatever it is…

  9. i knew it would only be a matter of time before all the S lovers would speak up. It’s cool, guys. Just don’t forget to cup the balls..

    @srclimb1 – maybe you forgot what web site you were on. Please see our nice, polite, suburban, objective, and non venomous mission statement:

  10. Wait… it took them 3.5 years to develop a fucking toolbox? … oh, and a special little gap in the frame real estate to bolt it in? Are you fucking shitting me? Sounds like there were many huge 3 foot bong rips of Oakland’s Finest OG Purple Kush taken in that 3.5 years in between the actual two weeks of actual work it probably took one guy to draw it out on a computer.

  11. @dirty biker…I just remembered why I haven’t been on this site in years…more drama than a soap opera…and the only thing that cups MY balls are mamacitas…I’m going for a ride…keep hatin’

  12. You totally forgot to mention that the “the chainstays are nearly a centimeter shorter, making the bike feel compact and whippy.”

    So whippy you can FEEL it even without reading about it first. Whippier than a DEVO song. Whippy like Miracle Whip. Whippy like like Mr. Whippy soft serve.

    In fact, I think I see a trademark violation. Mr. Whippy should sue the short hairs off of Velo News for using the word “whippy.” And maybe everyone who uses the word “whoopie” as well. It could create brand confusion.

  13. Now Honey, I’ve told you I’ll financially support you no matter what you choose to do, but we both know you can do better than this “review” if you want the checks to keep coming. You cried when they didn’t allow you into dealer camp last year, so this is how you respond? Man up and attack them on issues that deserve it. Like their anti-competitive dealer policies or their reprehensible warranty practices. SWAT box got you all gruffled up? Next time you’re home I’ll take you to McDonalds for one of those fish sandwiches you like so much. You can even get extra tartar sauce. Specialized bike prices too damn high? Just come home and let Daddy and I pay for college like we’ve repeatedly offered so you can finally afford all those big-boy toys.

    Look, Daddy and I love you no matter what, Pumpkin, but if you’re going to write like a stupid, uneducated asshole you should at least know what you’re talking about.

    Love, Mom.

    PS – Do you need me to send the maid over to clean up and do your laundry this week?

  14. Pingback: PR BS A Review of A Review of the 2014 Specialized Epic 29er | the frugal cyclist

  15. Trek and Giant just announced some badass 650b bikes for next year. Oops, specialized missed the boat again by pandering to the wealthy racer market that keeps buying into their Epic bullshit.

    Love how their bikes are now branded as SWORKS to show it is the top teir bike that cost a ton of $. Show off that race bike…

    *btw the demo DH bike rides great*

  16. OMFG !!!!!

    40 won on his own fucking post !!!!!!!!


    Love Mom

  17. What happened to the days of grabbing a plastic bag, shoving a tube into it and using a toe strap to secure under the seat?
    Could care less about new, stupid, over priced, crap that these bike companies try to shove down your throat as ” must have”.
    Dirty, call it like it is, and let the customers know what is real amd what is not! Respect is earned, and reviews like these get respect!

  18. I imagine Specialized will now try to sue anyone else that tries to use their new acronym, SWAT. http://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/SWAT

    “The engineering team at Specialized, headed up by Eric Schuda, sought to make the rider’s life easier. The result is what the company is calling SWAT (Storage, Water, Air, and Tools). The SWAT system took three years to engineer, a full year longer than the new Epic took.”

    S.W.A.T. = Specialized Worthless Annoying Thingy system

  19. I have the non carbon version of the SWAT, it’s called a seatbag. I guess I could tape it to the downtube? Nah, I guess seatbags aren’t cool enough for angry bikers and hipsters. Keeps shit off my back so I can stay cooler though. Keep on drinkin and hatin!

  20. Bemused by all the haters…

    I too work for SPECIALIZED and out of my OWN choice, have and always will choose SW :) Never had a drama, no warrant issues, great products, world class.

    I’ll see you at the top of the hill on my roadie :) And wait patiently at the pub while you’re still trying to ride a clean line on your MTB :)

    YOU TOO can never be too SPECIALIZED! ;)

    Anyways, get off the net and onto your bike – all jokes aside, the best on is the one you actually ride!

  21. Heh… not only do your dollars go towards marketing, they also go to iron fist dealer agreements, and iron fisted frivolous lawsuits because somebody makes something red, or uses the word ‘Epic’ in a product name or company, designed to stamp out smaller makers with pockets that aren’t as deep.

    I mean, Specy has some decent product, but fuck me running they are a bunch of money grubbing assholes. I know, surprise… they aren’t in it for the love… most companies aren’t but that is no reason to act like an Ayn Rand dooshbag.

  22. The most poignant thing about this is the fact that drunkcyclist is even here. So refreshing (to an extent) to have real voices characterize the evolution of our industry.

    Still, I had an argument with a girlfriend decades ago about clothing. She thought what she had to wear was the result of the system, when in fact, she was able to support alternatives then, like goodwill or other local enterprises. The same goes here. Specialized is not the only company to have a 10k bike. They are one of many. Those many fund your rides, and fund the employment of all those rebels in here looking to be awesome. I understand. i’m one of you, but better. so I get it.

    Fact of the matter is that your hate is where your dollars go. Don’t like Spec or other mass marketers, don’t buy their goods. BUY LOCAL.

    Last I checked, local for me was Coconino Cycles. Stteve Garro charges 1700 for brazed steel which is soooooooo Ironical to this poorly written argument and its subsequent elementary minded comment gallery.

    Bon Vida Ciclistas!

  23. I guess if you have the money to spend and this pumps you, so be it.

    SWAT? Unimpressive…especially if they really took that much time to develop. If it took me that long to develop something like that I sure as hell wouldn’t admit it unless there was a pretty damn good story to go along with it.

    I rode a 1998 mtb the other day. Had a blast on it.

  24. PS – 40 Hands, have to agree, this “review” was totally unprofessional. Absolutely soiled the reputation and general mantra of this fine website.
    Certainly never going to get a gig writing reviews for Mountain BIke Action now…

  25. the ‘Mercian way ! WIN that’s all. anyhow, I love my CRATER Frame pack made here in telluride, lots of Velcro, lots of storage capacity. works swell on my steel niner, as well as most any hard tail and the customization for full susers with frame space is possible. get that weight off your back, towards the center of the bike and the ride improves. I work for a big red s shop who fckd us and now have come back so we can order those occasional sweet products. anyhow they have one hell of an r&d ripoff and duplicate department. MERICA

  26. 10 grand! Precisely why I have 2 fakes sitting in the garage. They’re awesome AND cheap.

  27. So how many versions of SWAT can we get ??

    I vote for Special Whiskey and Titties.

    Seems fitting for this site.

    And to all the douchetards talking about reviews like they was media critics or some shit. It wasn’t a “review”. It was just one dude giving his opinion to fellow travelers. What’s the fucking problem here ??

  28. R&D = ripoff and duplicate

    Love it, i’m going to have to remember that one.

  29. They are bragging that it took three years of engineering to come up with a proprietary box??

  30. 10k for a bike.. lets look at the components.. oh what 10k for a bike wtf?… Given there are literally tons of bike out there from tons of brands that not only match this on features and general weight but also beat its price by say 7-8k it really shows this bike is for the rich uninformed enthusiasts that just wants to love specialized. So it begs the questions what kind of rider are you?

  31. The hating on Specialized is way off base. There is a reason they have gotten so big – they build great bikes and stand behind them. I’m guessing that has earned them more than a few repeat customers since they started however long ago. What should they do, turn them down so they can stay small? My 2004 Stumpy that I’ve put nine years worth of hard miles on is still rolling along and the Epic 29’er I just forked over mega $ for this year is so f’ing awesome that I’m almost embarrassed to ride it – totally shattered my “don’t let your equipment get too far ahead of your talent and committment” rule but it is worth every penny I spent. Also, they may be big but they don’t act like it. I could call their headquarters right now and talk to a knowledgeable rep about anything from shock set up to whatever. No waiting on hold and I would likely talk to the same guy that I’ve talked to a few times since I got the new bike. I don’t give a shit how big they get as long as they keep building good machines I’ll buy ’em.

  32. All shitting on Specialized aside… Who the fuck would spend $10K on a bike and want a big black piece of tupperware between the bottles?
    You could buy 2 really nice bikes for $10K, or better yet, one really really nice bike and still have a few grand left over to spend on scotch and women.
    @hack – “Also, they may be big but they don’t act like it” Say what now? Might want to check with your local bike shop about that. Or maybe talk to Revelate designs.

  33. I hope this isn’t the first time you’ve noticed the gouging price of bikes and all their accoutrements.

  34. I just can’t wrap my head around all of this. I paid under $400 for my Redline Monocog in 2003 and can’t imagine anything on two wheels being more fun. To each his own, I reckon.

  35. Never mind the dorky box… bottle cages? This isn’t a damn road bike, even if it does have roadie wheels on it…. it’s a *mountain* bike. That’s why camelbacks were invented. If you can reach down, get a bottle, drink, and replace the bottle…. you are clearly riding on a bike path. Try doing that on a real trail, and you’ll wake up at the county hospital; either (a) from the crash, or (b) from drinking from a bottle caked in cow shit.

  36. I ride “real trails”, but not near often enough. When I get thirsty, hungry or tired I stop and take a break. I do this because:

    1-I’m in the woods.
    2-I’m on a bike.
    3-The fewer breaks I take, the sooner I’m OUT of the woods and OFF my bike.


    Still, although cows are rare where I ride, horses and their attendant hydrocarbon emissions are far too common. That’s why I keep the refreshments in my panniers.

  37. Oh yeah, and re: water bottle cages-Can you think of a better place to stash your can of bear repellant?

    “Real trails”, my ass. Fucking city boy.

  38. Special Ed not feeling the love on DC! I admit, the whole SWAT thing is fairly silly, and I can’t see spending 10k on anything with two wheels that doesn’t have internal combustion powering it, but hey, to each their own. Spec does make some good stuff, and not *all* of it is overpriced / overhyped. Love their shoes, and their current line-up of tubeless ready tires seems really good for the $$.

  39. I would not spend 10k on a mass produced bike. For that kind of money you could get one sweet custom bike from a U.S. builder. I have never ridden anything sweeter than my Indy Fab. Oh…that SWAT thing is retarded.

  40. I should submit a pic of this $16K mtb I spotted at Cyclepath a block away from my job when I dropped in there to pick up brake pads, a tire, and a tube to get my tallbike running again.
    Holy shit, you’re bitchin about a $10K.. Who the fuck would drop $16K on something they’ll trash on a trail ride!!? People in Portland, OR that’s who.

  41. I rode an FSR for many years, it was a good bike. I’ve ridden the brain thingy and it worked well.

    But jebus, I bought a full-plastic Scott 29er last year for $2000 and it’s a fucking hoot to ride. I could buy one for four friends and we’d have us a FUCK YEAH group ride.

  42. I used to buy my bike by separate, because I enjoy setting up the bike at my taste, I gave my self the opportunity to buy the Specialized Stomp… S Works, is amazing how I have no complains about nothing, minimals maybe, but not compared with setting my own. Not compared my self to a bunch of engineers working all together to design a great bike, not perfect because we are all deferent, but close to.
    About the price, I see you don’t understand about cost, I know XTR is not double better that XT, but is a thing of production cost. a 200 buck wine is not 4 times better than a 50 bucks wine.
    So relax and buy cheaper, they are very convenient!

  43. A full sus 29er with space for two water bottles is an improvement. My SC Tallboy BARELY has room for one water bottle. Nonetheless, I would still never ride or buy a Spayshellized.

    And re: Chris @1:10: On long rides, it’s kind of nice to be able to carry water in a pack and a food bottle on the bike. If you never ride your bike for more than a couple of miles, which seems likely based on your comment, you may not understand.

  44. The young men got the good legs … and the old men got the good equipment. Deal with it!