Specialized Demo 8 I Alloy - Review

Nov 15, 2016 at 12:58
by Mike Kazimer  



The latest incarnation of Specialized's Demo 8 was unveiled at the tail end of the 2014 season, and as soon as the cloak of secrecy was lifted on the one-sided carbon fiber frame there were scores of riders left trying to figure out how to add one to their stable. This season, Specialized went ahead and made the Demo 8 more attainable by releasing an alloy version of the futuristic-looking ride. The distinctive shape remains, but by using aluminum rather than carbon fiber the price was greatly reduced. There's a $1,400 price difference for the frame alone – that's enough money for a season's pass at the bike park with plenty of pizza money left over.


Specialized Demo 8 I Alloy

• Intended use: downhill
• Wheel size: 27.5''
• Rear wheel travel: 200mm
• 63.5° head angle
• M5 alloy frame, carbon seatstays
• 1.5" head tube
• 12 x 135mm rear spacing
• Weight: 40 lb (long, actual, w/o pedals)
• MSRP: $4,000 USD
www.specialized.com / @Specialized
Curious as to how the base level model of a bike that was originally designed for World Cup domination would fare, we put the Demo 8 I Alloy through the wringer, smashing out countless laps in the Whistler Bike Park and shuttling some of the best trails in the Pacific Northwest.

What do you get for $4,000 USD? The Demo 8 I Alloy comes spec'd with a RockShox BoXXer RC fork up front and a Fox Van RC in the rear, both delivering 200mm of travel. Stopping duties are handled by SRAM's Guide R brakes, and the drivetrain uses a SRAM X7 shifter paired with 10-speed GX rear derailleur and a cassette that's been reduced down to 7-speeds. There are four sizes available – short, medium, long, and extra long, and two colors, green/red or charcoal/black.


Specialized Demo Alloy review
The bike's cable routing is very clean, and the rear brake can be internally or externally routed depending on rider preference.
Specialized Demo Alloy review
The swoopy lines of the alloy Demo make it look nearly identical to its more expensive carbon fiber sibling.


Frame Details

When I first pulled the Demo 8 I out of the box I thought for a moment that the wrong model had been sent out. This doesn't look like a base model ride; from a distance it would even be easy to think that the entire frame was carbon fiber. The silhouette is almost identical to the carbon version, and from the low-slung top tube to the single-sided seat mast the same shapes are all still there. Plus, it's hard to go wrong with an all-black color scheme.

The Demo uses a 1.5” headtube with two ports on the right side for internally routing brake and derailleur housing. It's also possible to run the brake line along the outside of the downtube, which is how the bike arrived, which makes it easier to perform a brake swap or other maintenance.

At the back of the bike, instead of using the more commonly seen 12x150mm rear spacing, Specialized chose to go with 12x135mm, citing the increased clearance that it provides. When race runs are decided by fractions of a second, it's feasible that something as minor as a frame hanging up on a rock could make all the difference. That being said, it does make it a little more difficult to find a replacement hub or wheel. The thru-axle has a square, conical end that keeps it securely fixed in the frame no matter what abuse the rear wheel is subjected to.


Specialized Demo Alloy review

Suspension Layout

The Demo 8 still uses a Horst Link design for its 200mm of travel – the rearmost pivot is on the chainstay, and positioned well below the rear axle. The main pivot is positioned as low as possible; in this case, it actually rotates around the bottom bracket.

How did that design come about? Well, when we first discussed the Demo with Specialized's Senior Design Engineer, Jason Chamberlain, he said, “I started by thinking about what it would look like if we just moved everything down three inches, and naturally what happened was that the main pivot moved into the same real estate as the bottom bracket, so it became natural to just integrate those into one pivot. Then I reconfigured all the other pivots around that. The FSR, four-bar performance is still there even though the pivots are in radically different locations."
Specialized Demo Alloy review
The rear wheel uses 12x135mm spacing and is held in place by a square-headed thru-axle.

The suspension has a slightly progressive design, with a gradual ramp up towards the end of its travel, although we have seen Specialized's Work Cup DH racers using custom links to increase the end stroke ramp up even further. Then again, those guys are traveling at speeds that most of us can barely imagine and have different needs than that of a 'regular' rider.



Geometry / Sizing


The Demo is available in four sizes, but due to the fact that the standover and seat tube length remain the same across the entire range, riders are free to chose a size based on the reach number without worrying other numbers.

As far as other numbers go, the 63.5-degree head angle and 430mm chainstays are right in line with other bikes in this category. For reference, a YT Tues also has a 63.5-degree head angle and 435mm chainstays, and a Santa Cruz V10 has a 63.5-degree head angle in the low setting with 441mm chainstays.
Demo 8 geometry






Specifications
Specifications
Price $4000
Travel 200mm
Rear Shock FOX/Specialized Van RC, rebound & compression adjust, 9.5x3.0"
Fork RockShox BoXXer RC, 200mm travel
Cassette SRAM PG-1030
Crankarms SRAM Descendant, BB30, 165mm
Chainguide Gamut
Pedals Specialized Bennies
Chain SRAM PC-1031, 10-speed
Rear Derailleur SRAM GX Type 2.1, short cage
Shifter Pods SRAM X7
Handlebar Specialized DH, 7050 alloy, 8-degree backsweep, 6-degree upsweep, 25mm rise, 800mm, 31.8mm
Stem Specialized P.Series MTB, forged alloy, 4-bolt, 45mm
Grips Specialized Sip Grip, half-waffle
Brakes SRAM Guide R
Hubs Specialized disc, 12x135mm spacing, sealed cartridge bearings, 32h
Rim Roval 650b, alloy, 24mm inner width, 32h
Tires F: Butcher, DH casing, 650bx2.5" // R: Slaughter, DH casing, 650bx2.3"
Seat Body Geometry Phenom Comp, hollow Cr-Mo rails, 143mm
Seatpost Specialized, 6061 alloy, 2-bolt clamp, 0mm setback, 30.9mm

Specialized Demo Alloy review





Setup

With only two external adjustments – compression and rebound – on both the fork and the shock there wasn't much futzing around required before hitting the trail. I did put a softer spring in the Boxxer RC, due to the fact that I'm on the lighter side of things for my height, but that was the only alteration needed.

At 5'11” I decided to go with a size long, which has a reach of 440mm. I'm sure I could have managed an extra-long, and if I was focused solely on downhill speed I might have gone that route, but these days all of my DH riding is for fun, and the slightly shorter reach of the size long made it a little easier to maneuver and whip around. The notion that longer bikes are always better has gained traction over the last few years, but it's important to consider your riding style and preferred terrain when it comes to sizing, advice that's applicable to all mountain bikes, not just DH sleds.


Mike Kazimer taking the alloy Specialized Demo into orbit


Performance

My first rides on the Demo 8 took place amidst the hubub of Crankworx, a time when Whistler's trails turn into dusty, blown out and brake bump filled versions of their former selves. In other words, prime conditions for seeing what a downhill bike can endure.

From the beginning it was clear that the alloy Demo isn't the most playful beast out there; it'd rather stay on the ground as long as possible rather than hopping and popping down the trail. Those manners are likely due in part to its 40-pound weight, which is on the higher side for a modern downhill bike, but once it's up to pace the laziness begins to fade away, and the Demo becomes much more maneuverable. While it might not be that eager to bound up and over little obstacles, the Demo does just fine when faced with the lip of a big manmade jump, and trails like A-Line, Dirt Merchant, Crabapple Hits, Whistler's jump-filled classics, didn't pose any problems.


Mike Kazimer laying the alloy Specialized Demo over


Letting off the brakes and allowing gravity to take over whenever possible is really the best way to get the most out of this bike – on slower sections of trail the weight and the fairly basic suspension, particularly the BoXXer RC fork, was more noticeable. The fork has a dramatic ramp up about half way through its travel that can make it feel harsh at slower speeds, but that harshness wasn't as apparent once the miles-per-hour increased. Steep, rough terrain is where the Demo felt most at home, which makes sense considering its DH racing roots. While the suspension may hold the bike back slightly, the geometry certainly doesn't – there's plenty of standover clearance, and enough room in the cockpit to feel centered and balanced no matter how angle of the trail.

The rear suspension has a fairly neutral, linear feel – it's not as progressive as a bike like the YT Tues, and doesn't plow through the rough stuff like Commencal's Supreme V4, but it's very predictable, with enough ramp up at the end of the travel that I didn't experience any harsh bottom outs despite a number of misjudged landings and overzealous hucks. That 200mm of travel certainly helped take the edge off when speeding through chunky sections of trail, and despite the relative simplicity of the Fox Van RC shock, it took all of the bumps and impacts sent its way without putting up a fuss.

I'm a fan of quiet bikes, and I much rather be flying through the woods on a near-silent machine rather than one that sounds like someone filled a clothes dryer with scrap metal. Ok, so the Demo isn't that noisy, but it is pretty loud - the sound of the chain smacking the underside of the chainstay created quite a racket, even with the rubberized padding in place. It's worth noting that I'd previously been riding the aforementioned Commencal Supreme V4, one of the quietest downhill bikes currently on the market, before switching to the Demo Alloy, so my sensitivity to noise may have been a little higher than usual.


Specialized Demo Alloy review
Specialized Demo Alloy review

Component Check

• Specialized Slaughter tire : When Specialized first debuted the Slaughter there were plenty of riders who passed it off as a dry conditions only tire, but as it turns out, it's much more of an all-rounder than its low profile center would suggest. Predictable in almost every feasible trail conditions except for deep mud, it's an excellent rear tire, especially when matched up with the 2.5” Butcher DH up front. As an added bonus, the tread lifespan has been longer than expected.

• SRAM GX 10-speed derailleur: I did manage to break a derailleur cable during testing, but the derailleur itself survived just fine. Rather than relying completely on the derailleur's limit screws to prevent it from going up over that biggest cog, a set screw secures a stopper that the cable runs through, preventing the derailleur from moving further than it should. The setup works, just don't forget to reinstall that little stopper when you replace a cable.

• SRAM Guide R brakes: They may be the entry-level option in SRAM's line of Guide brakes, but the R version offered up plenty of well-controlled power, without any fading or pumping up during testing. Kudos to Specialized for speccing them with metallic brake pads, ensuring longer pad life and better wet weather performance.




Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesWith the Demo 8 I Alloy, you're getting a bike that you could pull off the shelf, roll into the Whistler Bike Park, and confidently drop into any trail without worrying swapping out any components. That doesn't mean there aren't big differences between this $4,000 base model ride and one with top of the line suspension and parts - there certainly are - it's just that for many riders, those who want to dabble in DH but without remortgaging the house, the Demo 8 I alloy would make a fine companion. - Mike Kazimer




Visit the high-res gallery for more images from this review.



About the Reviewer
Stats: Age: 34 • Height: 5'11” • Inseam: 33" • Weight: 160lb • Industry affiliations / sponsors: None
Twenty years deep into a mountain biking addiction that began as a way to escape the suburban sprawl of Connecticut, Mike Kazimer is most at home deep the woods, carving his way down steep, technical trails. The decade he spent as a bike mechanic helped create a solid technical background to draw from when reviewing products, and his current location in the Pacific Northwest allows for easy access to the wettest, muddiest conditions imaginable.



293 Comments

  • + 464
 4 grand for an alloy rig with shit spec... Get with the times specialized this is garbage.
  • + 97
 I had the 2014 demo 8 1. within the first few weeks I blew up the rc cartridge. then again I literally broke the cartridge in half.,... I updated it to a charger. During that time, I also blew out the van rc rear shock. suprisingly they still spec these bikes with that junk. It's cool for a beginner, but at $4k being entry level, come on. an entry level glory with a simlar spec is 2700$?
  • + 183
 In the mean time, at Canyon online store...
  • + 94
 Spesh needs to get with the times and learn how to price bikes. Paying for a brand name isn't worth it
  • + 54
 @gnralized: Or the Commencal online store..
  • + 39
 Especially with all the specialized branded parts... seriously specialized? Just shit then fall in it.
  • + 24
 I was looking at the YT store the other day and the gorgeous blacked out TUES base model was going for $3,700. Oh boy that's only slightly cheaper than this I thought. Then I realised this is 4 grand US dollars - i.e. 5,600 NZD. Yeah nah, you can pick up a lightly ridden carbon top spec rig secondhand for that price
  • - 15
flag allix2456 (Nov 28, 2016 at 21:45) (Below Threshold)
 @petrospit: Come now, we're talking bikes not balloon animals.
  • + 120
 I wouldn't go as far as calling the spec garbage - it's comparable to other non-consumer direct brands' offerings. For instance, Kona's Operator DL has a very similar parts kit for 4k, Transition's base model TR500 has similar suspension and Deore brakes for $3900, and the $3999 Trek Session 8 has the same fork and brakes, but a slightly better drivetrain.

All the same, it is true that YT, Canyon, and Commencal are all offering compelling arguments for going the consumer direct route. Not everyone is willing to bypass their local bike shop though, and for relative newcomers to the sport the advice, setup tips and maintenance that a good shop provides can be worth the initial extra cost.
  • + 10
 @mikekazimer: YT and Canyon maybe, and only if they can get their act together on parts support to N. America. Commencal on the other hand is owned by a narcissistic weirdo who thinks the world owes him it's business. Which it doesn't considering half his bike have machining tolerances measured in feet, not millimetres.

... Inadvertently my description of Commencal also applies directly to Specialized
  • + 18
 @allix2456: ive never owned a Commenxal but am seriously looking at the DH V4/4.2, please further elaborate on their tolerances or are you just a hater?
  • - 26
flag chaserider (Nov 28, 2016 at 23:09) (Below Threshold)
 @petrospit:
But commencal still suck!
  • + 19
 probably so expensive due to all the work required to get the alu frame to resemble the carbon one.
  • + 6
 It's the less-Specialized Demo and I still would have to sell my car to afford that thing!
  • + 27
 @chair1films: It has nothing to do with them not knowing how to price bikes or paying for a "brand name"- it has to do with accounting for the margin a retailer wants to make.

Wholesale price marked up for retail = Specialized, Trek, Santa Cruz, Yeti, etc.

Wholesale price priced direct to consumer = YT, Canyon, Commencal, etc.

Why they are priced the way they are is basic economics. Whether or not you want to pay for it is another story.
  • - 37
flag maclife (Nov 29, 2016 at 0:16) (Below Threshold)
 I think its a bargain £3000 gbp is a months wage here in uk peanuts for a bike that's won a hell of a lot of dh world cup races.
  • - 3
 @mikekazimer: direct sales good on your pocket, poor for your soul
  • + 12
 @allix2456: Whats wrong with Commencal? Explain your point
  • + 14
 @viatch @petrospit
We've had more than a handful of their frame sets come through the shop where either the rear end was so mis-aligned that the shock would bind under mid-long travel, or the shock mounts wouldn't be in-line. I've seen a lot of perfect frame sets as well. The worst were the high chain pulley bikes where that whole area was incredibly tightly packed and almost always required work to get the clearance needed not to rub the frame on itself.
  • + 6
 @allix2456: Thanks for the information
  • + 7
 @mikekazimer: maybe Trek /Kona etc are overpriced too, compared to shop sold Norco for instance: Aurum A7.1, superior spec, $600USD less than peers.

Direct sales must be hitting the big long established brands, they have to get more price competitive. The only time of year when there is any value in shop sold bikes is when they're clearing out, with 20%+ discounts, for the next years usually identical model.
  • + 27
 @powergavin: 3000gbp for a month? You working as a spaceship engineer or what? Big Grin
  • + 2
 the sad part is that this overweight-big"S"-bike will sell....more than what we think...
  • - 17
flag maclife (Nov 29, 2016 at 1:40) (Below Threshold)
 @Psyhostar: Just a tiler mate on an average wage training to be plumber to get on decent money.
  • + 4
 @mikekazimer: 4000 bucks for a base model entry level bike, even if it is specialized is bullshit, and I would never buy direct, but the margin on bikes is way to high. It´s not about if other brands are doing the same nonsense pricing spec, its about wether or not it´s correcctly priced. The stores and distributors get a very high margin compared to other industries. Bikes are overpriced. We pay for them though, so it gives them a reason to keep putting prices up, hopefully that will change and it is changing. It doesnt make sense that most people now feel like paying the full price for stuff makes them dumb... I mean really? does that make sense? Just lower intial prices. Overall the biking market is bullshit, and people are getting tired of it, I mean, you spend 3,4,6,7 K on a bike which the same company who sold it to you tries to tell you is crap one season after? Short term business perspective, very immature, unprofessional market. I could go on and on about reasons why its that way, dirtbikes are better priced, direct sale brands are increasing, if a company invested properly in the market it would blow away most brands... And again, I love bike boutiques, I never buy online or direct... but some things just stink. And I will still probably buy stuff I dont need, want stuff that I cant afford... There, read it or not my opinion is somewhere other than in my head.
  • + 42
 @stefanfresh: The margin on bikes is like 20-40% depending on the model. The margin on everything else in the world is 100%. Ask anybody at a bike shop, anywhere on the planet, they'll confirm this one for you.

The reason this bike costs $4000 is pretty simple. Specialized came up with a design that they liked, that they thought was worth producing, and it costs quite a bit to manufacture. The bike industry makes product for one reason alone, because someone out there loves cool bikes and wants to share it with everyone else. I know it goes against a lot of the internet rage, but look around, no one in the bike world is getting rich.
  • + 15
 @stefanfresh: You are unfortunately completely wrong about the margin a retailer makes on bikes. It is in the vicinity of 29%-39%. Compared to clothing, helmets, sunglasses, etc. at 50%-60%. If retailers sold bikes at full price, they would barely stay afloat- the cost of doing business and low turn rates that bikes have is ridiculous. They absolutely rely on service and accessories to make the majority of their profit. To say that bikes are over-priced shows that you do not understand the retail bike industry.

Now, the margin bikes deliver is for sure higher than the electronic industry (for example) but the turn rate in the electronic industry is far higher to offset the lower margins. If bike retailers lowered their prices by 20% they would assuredly go out of business unless they were selling service, helmets, and other accessories like bonkers at full margin.
  • + 13
 @powergavin: average wage in the U.K. is £26,500, which comes to about £2200 per month before tax... so as a tiler you're above average. I'm a teacher, just abover average, and with other things I need to pay for, it'd take over a year to save up for one of these!
In any case, got a 2013 demo, but would certainly like someone to buy it so I can get a canyon!
  • + 15
 @jtn1989: I just thought the alloy demo 8 bike was value for money over the carbon s works £6500 its going to be heavier and cheaper specs. There seems a lot of specialized haters out there personally I think they keep pushing the sport with new innovations like swat storage and swat tools etc.It was specialized who made the first enduro bike and short chainstays long travel 29er I could go on other companys are just following specialized.
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: ...you've picked 3 of the most expensive brands...Kona/Transition/Trek....then gone straight to direct only comparison....there's quite a lot in between and I think that's what the subject raised is really aimed at.....So I think its a fair comment save maybe the word "garbage"...."low end" is probably fairer... you cant blame the gut reaction....I mean 4 grand is 4 grand and these are bikes at the end of the day....
  • + 8
 @stefanfresh: you said the stores and distributors make very high margin compared to other industries.
What ?!! You're not well informed, the margin are the lowest compared to other industries.
If you want to make money don't work in a bike Shop !
Margin in clothes Shop are 4 in average and 2.2 or 2 at the lowest.
In glasses Shop it's 10, maybe more for exemple.
In bike Shops it's à difficult 1.7!
An average bike Shop often make ZERO benefits per years.
Onlines brand only run with networks that original brands made many years to develop and Onlines brands made HUGE margin.
Who's the profiteer ?! You choose. ..
  • + 7
 @mikekazimer: Shhhh they just want to bash specialized... It could come fully spec'd with DVO and ENVE, for 2k, and people would still find something to complain about...
  • + 6
 @mikekazimer the bike has a comparable spec to the regular kona operator which is roughly $800 cheaper (3199) as is the commencal and vitus dh offerings. For $800 you're dam right I'll bypass the Local bike shops.
  • + 3
 @powergavin: what job are you doing then?
  • + 3
 have to agree especially with all the better builds for less on the market - 4k for the "entry offering", cray cray
  • + 5
 4000 is the price you pay if you want it within 3 mos. of it's release. If you wait, the price comes down. Some people will pay the full price 9 mos. from now, but a little searching will get the bike 30% off, at least, within 6 mos.
  • + 8
 So I just did a quick search on pinkbike buy/sell,and for $4k you can get one hell of a DH bike
  • + 13
 40lbs without pedals.....
  • + 3
 @splsce: Perhaps the best comment ever.
  • + 5
 @mikekazimer: Advice and tips worth extra $1500? For that money, they'd have to teach me how to race down a world cup track...
  • + 2
 Complaining about the MSRP. Like you guys pay retail....
  • + 6
 @stefanfresh: Stefan, +10 to what aaron and ka-brap said.

Yes, shops have to make money on bikes, but over the course of a year when factoring in operating expenses, investing in next year's inventory, and attempting to make a profit, it's not that much unless the shop is just selling sh*t tons of bikes.

Shops need to be servicing bikes all the time to be profitable. I only buy a bike every few years and always on sale, so shops don't make much off me on bike sales. But I spend who knows, ~$500 annually at the shop on wheel rebuilds, suspension service, and any fix I can't do on my own, and I'm happy to do that. I'm happy to buy brake pads and tires through the shop also when I'm dropper her off for service as there's usually something that's getting close to worn.

Anyway, bikes are expensive but shop pricing is where it needs to be because most shops get by but don't have a money bin out back for the employees and owner to bathe in regularly whilst laughing about how bad they ripped off a dozen customers that day.

And DH bikes are always pricier than their equivalent (material/spec) AM, trail, or xc rig.

Anyway, I don't feel the margin on bikes is too high when you understand the full end to end supply chain and traditional distribution model.

And just quit listening to whoever is telling you (eg. our beloved industry media outlets) that your bike is outdated after a season. It's not.
  • + 1
 @gnralized: "Meanwhile" would have worked better...
  • + 4
 @deadmeat25: Sorry about that, I can't deny my english skills decrease as my beer consumption increased...
  • + 4
 @chair1films: the market will inform them. Either they sell or they don't. Hopefully there is enough margin for shops to move them. Luckily for us, there is competition and freedom to choose from many, many brands.
  • - 3
 @burgerboy78: you don't read much, do you? He's already stated that he's a tiler.
  • + 5
 For everyone here complaining about how you can get at YT, Commencal or Canyon for less... By all means, go out and get one of those bikes. Why complain about the Specialized when the answer is so clear?
  • + 4
 If everybody does only look at the $$-numbers, why don't we all drive a Skoda or Seat or Kia?

Some want to drive a Seat, some want to drive a Audi.
Some want to ride a YT/Canyon/Cube, some want to ride a Specialized.
  • + 3
 @MSVF: Half of my country drives a Skoda... Big Grin

(I ride a Rocky Mountain I bought from eBay)
  • - 5
flag torero (Nov 29, 2016 at 12:23) (Below Threshold)
 Trek and Specialized are thieves. Bicycles expensive and bad. End.
  • + 1
 @MSVF: So what about VW ???
  • + 1
 @medievalbiking: you where looking at the carbon, alloy starts around 2700
  • + 4
 Exactly what i thought. You can get the Canyon Sender CF 9.0 (Carbon frame , fox 40 Kashima, Fox x2 evol kashima, renthal carbon fatbar and apex stem) for 4,799
  • - 1
 @powergavin: the alloy version just came out bud it hasn't won any wc races lol
  • + 1
 @allix2456: Love your comment!
  • + 0
 @ka-brap: Well then feel free to take my spot on the pre-order list... smart ass
  • - 1
 @stefanfresh: stop being such a peasant, increase your value to the world and you in turn will get more value back. I could spout other rich dad poor dad type crap but i dunno if it will make much of a difference.
Had 5 bikes from age 18-32, only one was new. All the rest I brought used. My money went to getting my mortgage under control, throwing money in to the sharemarket, investing in a bunch of otherstuff. Now late 30's I look back and think it was all worth it, can buy whatever bike I want now, regardless of the price.

That being said, I brought a YT. Would have brought a specialised had they been widely available in NZ.

The point is, you are complaining about things that probably won't change - things beyond your control. A useless endeavor. What you can control is how much you earn.
  • + 4
 @nerfmacestun: you lost all credibility when you called someone a peasant lol. You are bragging about mediocrity man. Biking is getting insane for what it is.
  • + 1
 @gnralized: Somehow they are not as popular in North America anymore, so I have selected seat for the comparison with audi ; )
  • + 1
 @deadtime: This. I can get this bike for about 2500 GBP (excl. tax) now and I will probably be able to get it below 2000 in a couple months. Another example: I got my Kona Process 167 brand new for $2400 while the RRP was about $4999.
  • + 1
 @magiko9: how do you got that Kona so cheap? do you know someone or just looking around?
  • + 2
 @JoseBravo: I was looking around, and actually Wiggle sold a few of them for really good prices. I got mine from Canada though. It was the last one they (Velocity Cycles) had so I got a big discount. I never look at RRPs because you can find almost anything anytime for much cheaper - if you can wait a little.
  • + 4
 @WasatchEnduro: I just stopped in a newer LBS last weekend to grab a $3 part I needed, typical for me, and those guys were humping some wheel truing & suspension work for other customers double time. I paid my couple bucks, really wanted to find something else to buy to support them but I'm pretty stocked, and walking through I see about a dozen different fully spec'd carbon bikes on the floor, most of them new. I'm thinking the overhead for all that must be a killer, you'd need pretty consistent turnover to stay afloat or be paying interest on the business loans you took out to have those bikes ready to sell- I don't know what their cost is but averaging $4-6K/bike that adds up quick. That's an assload of nickel & dime work, especially now heading into winter. They obviously were enjoying their work, and there is something to be said about that over making $$ if that is their mindset, but that situation would freak me out if I were the owner. Luckily most riders don't know squat about repairing & servicing their own stuff or guys like this wouldn't exist in the online retail world. Everybody wants to save a buck, and honestly I could've paid about $1 buying online, but they took the time to stop mid-repair to ring me out for no profit. That is why I will return, maybe even buy my next bike through them.
  • + 1
 @viatch: I have to say I recently got my son the new Commencal Supreme 24", after building it, Commencal has won my interest for my next DH rig. Its by far highest quality kids bike ive ever been in the presence of (out of the box). I hopped on it to burn in the brakes, my 6'3" 190lbs frame on its Kids sized 140mm frame and I feel like I could take that thing down a trail with confidence lol. It was solid, silent, perfect amount of progressive plush for the kiddo.

All that to say, if they design/build their premier DH rigs anything like their kids bikes, I wouldn't hesitate!!
  • + 4
 @markripper Mediocre is a city man, peasants are heroes who resist against the system.
  • + 1
 And that weights 40 lbs!!!!
  • + 3
 Holly cow, so many comments. So I´m not completely making up this stuff just out of hate or being a peasant, I compleley love the biking world don´t get me wrong this is just an observation and an opinion it doesnt have me up at night. I understand how the whole supply system works, I have some knowledge of bike margins from friends who work at stores and from buying straight to distributors for a racing team, and also from other industries my family owns a clothes shop. Elasticity of demand, which means that a market may not always be selling it´s efficient amount if the price is not the one most consumers are willing to pay( at least theoretically) small drop in price may create a huge increase in quantitty so profits are higher. What I meant was that when a store sells a bike 2,3,4 K bike they make some money, it´s not like in other industries where they may have a 300% margin but sell something worth 20 euros. The fact that most people never buy stuff full price, that most of the bikes we own have not been purchased new or at full price, that almost no one starts in mtb buying a brand new entry level 2k-3K bike that selling over the internet and direct is becoming more common and that there are polls about the future of bike stores kindda makes my point. I mean, yeah bike stores and brands aren´t getting super rich, but I do beleive that they could be making more money or at least selling more bikes, or at least mannaging to make clear why they should be there. Maybe u guys have an awesome bike store close by, it´s not that way in many places, and most bikes are more expensive in europe than in the US dont forget so its even more ridiculously priced. That said, of course, I will keep buying whatever I beleive is best for me, always trying to avoid online or direct, and supporting my local bike shop, as long as it´s the place I think it should be and the prices are sensible Anyways, we should like grab a beer or something and discuss it, cause men I hate typing so much.
  • + 0
 @petrospit: best deal out there by far...the Commencal is such better ride then spesh piles.
  • + 1
 @aaronfpeet ; @WasatchEnduro nobody is "telling me", it´s a little voice in my head after every add of new bikes and stuff haha; @ChOu177 ; @aaronfpeet ; @ka-brap, the margin in electronics is so much higer, how much do you think an iphone really costs??? i.e.; @nerfmacestun ( WTF mate? It looks like your the one needing some dad advice! Don´t talk like a d... rhymes with sick!
  • + 2
 I learned many moons ago to just buy a frame do a build myself. The components that most companies use for there builds are junk. If you want it done right do it yourself.
  • + 1
 @gnralized: canyon for president
  • + 81
 Pretty weak suspension and drivetrain spec for $4000. Catch me on a YT Tues AL for $2300 with the same quality spec.
  • + 12
 its a specialized, kinda like an overpriced BMW. except its nothing like a BMW even if its overpriced
  • + 10
 You're pretty spot on! I got me the base model tues full price at 3k out the door, and it's way better than the demo.
  • - 15
flag vroomvroompartystarter (Nov 28, 2016 at 20:11) (Below Threshold)
 @viatch: BMW are over-engineered junk.
  • + 9
 Also am I the only one that thinks this doesn't look as good as a Tues? Don't get me wrong, the carbon fibre split frame is sick, but I don't think it works so well on the metal detector version
  • + 3
 And they both have terrible customer support!
  • + 3
 I agree. I wouldn't be upset about the price if it was around 600 bucks less. 4g's? C'mon. What's specialized offering that other bikes aren't for several hundred dollars less with higher spec'd parts and debatable suspension technology besides a brand name? Is warranty better? Is reliability better? I doubt it.
  • - 3
 @vroomvroompartystarter: Hell no they are not, they handle like a Ferrari for every mans budget. Over engineered? Just designed to work as well as possible, not a shitty parts bin of a car like all the others. I've had some that are 45 years old & they drive better than most modern junk. Also my 2002 managed 31 mpg on a 700 mile trip & it is 44 years old... well engineered. It's different.
  • + 2
 Exactly... stop buying specialized folks they re fisting you!!!
  • + 2
 @MaxDeutsch Dooooo it, love my Tues I picked up this summer! And you'll actually get a better drivetrain spec with the YT. X9 shifter and X9 type 2 clutch derailleur.
  • + 3
 @sicmoto: The Canyon Sender CF 7.0 is $400 USD less and has a carbon front triangle. Seriously, need not say more.
  • + 3
 @cwatt: My only comment in support of buying the Demo over it would be the Specialized warranty, which is renowned, versus the Canyon warranty which is also renowned for very different reasons. I know a guy who had a strive 650b, it cracked and they sent him a 26 frame because they'd none left!
  • + 3
 @sicmoto: Don't know if they still do it but I have 2 Specialized frames and they are both lifetime warranty. Hard to beat that.
  • + 56
 They say 100% of this bikes proceeds will go towards copyright lawyers.
  • + 17
 I think that's a bit unfair. Surely a large portion of proceeds go to their try-hard hipster design team. ahem, www.instagram.com/hellhommus
  • + 8
 @velocitajano: wow, that's quite an insight! I'm not gonna beat around the bush when I say, I hate the "new school cyclist".
  • + 10
 @velocitajano: Mods need to drop the ban hammer on velocitajano. I clicked on that link and now my keyboard is covered with breakfast vomit. This will cost me a fortune in therapy sessions and excessive liquor consumption to help me get over what cannot be unseen.
  • + 3
 Why did I click the link? Why?!
  • + 6
 @velocitajano: Oh great, more veganblackmetal Big S hipsters.
  • + 4
 @jackalope: I watched 2 girls one cup to clean the bad taste in my mouth
  • + 3
 @JoseBravo: Hahahaha! Legend!
  • + 3
 You're a godsend @josebravo, worked like a charm! Going to try this during Monday morning staff meetings.
  • + 31
 Rode this for the summer in Whistler.

Rear cable breaking was from the silly clamp on cable limiter. Too much stress kinking the cable when you inevitably try and shift the 10spd trigger beyond 7 clicks. Fixed by replacing the heavy 7spd cassette + plastic RACER RICKY spacer with a full 10 spd cassette.

All bolts holding the chain retainer on are tightened by Specialized's resident steroid injected yeti. After breaking/twisting 3 allens & stripping the bolts I had to drill and saw at my new frame. Also, all of Gamuts patented ButterAlloy chainring bolts stripped & needed to be drilled out.

Brakes are a definite upgrade area.

The bike is damn noisy. Chain slap is real.

Something to note, the 2017 model has a longer shock than the 2016. 9.5 x 3.0. I assume this is because they updated the link? Since everyone that rides these things professionally had been doing the same from day one. But IDK.

Rode a Large being 6'. It seemed fine. Bike didnt seem overly heavy & did everything from Crabapple to Goats Gully just fine.
  • + 7
 And the "seat stays" are in fact carbon.
  • + 3
 Strange the 2016 alloy demos I saw all ran 9.5 x 3...
  • + 5
 @rewob: touche on that ! get your facts right Pinkbike, your sponsor wouldn't be too pleased with that.
  • + 3
 After riding mine with a GX 10spd and an X.9 10spd derailier this summer and hating the chain slap I got the new Sram GX DH 7spd drivetrain and the bike is now basically silent. Worthy upgrade and with the GX DH full drivetrain costing less than an X01 DH derailer alone its not too expensive.
  • + 5
 so true on the steroid locktite ninja that spesh has tightening all their bolts. ever bike comes with at least the cranks stuck on. my demo had the chainring, chainguide, and crank so overtight it was crazy.
  • + 2
 My cable frays and needs to be replaced every 4 or 5 rides, despite proper set up. Good to know that a 10spd cassette does the trick for 2017 prep.
  • + 2
 @Killrockstar: www.specialized.com/us/en/bikes/mountain/downhill/demo-8-i/107077


8.75 listed here. I got mixed up and almost ordered a 8.75 float X2 because of that.
  • + 1
 @Billjohn6: Yeah, just get a used 10spd road cassette somehow. I put a shimano one on, it was lighter than the stock setup. It didnt shift perfect because sram≠shimano spacing but it was better than replacing cables.
  • + 10
 @rewob: Sram and Shimano have the same cassette spacing...
  • + 1
 @rludes025: Huh. I could definitely be mistaken. I used a ultegra road cassette. Seemed funky.
  • + 4
 @rewob: Could just be a bent hanger or gunked up housing. Housing goes to shit without you noticing since its so gradual.
  • + 1
 @rewob: I believe that listing is a mistake. The hubs on the carbon demos was also specced wrong and as in this spec the bike also claims to have a carbon link that it does not.
I think spesh need to sort out there web designer.
  • + 3
 All the shocks on the Demos keep the same size, from 2014-2017, 9.5x3.0
  • + 1
 @Killrockstar: s-works have carbon rear ends and links. . . Lower end carbon frames are like enduro/stumpjumper they have alloy rear ends and @willfox747 you are correct!
  • + 1
 @MX298: I own a s-works demo and I owned the eightone version for a couple of weeks before I sent it back and upgraded.

But thanks for the random info....
  • + 2
 @Killrockstar: it's an internet thing! ! !
  • + 1
 Gotta love a $4K bike with a ghetto derailleur setup. That's like putting a 4-speed under a 5-speed stick and blocking it off by jamming something in the way. Either leave the 10spd cassette or put on a correct 7spd shifter & derailleur. What happens when you drop the adapter on the trail fixing a blown cable?
  • + 1
 @Hobo1337: They don't use torque wrenches in Taiwan.
  • + 1
 My demo has the chainguide bolts done up so tight from factory I twisted an allenkey trying to undo them.
  • + 1
 @bigburd: Oh gawd, I'm about to change my chainguide and chainring when they arrives....
  • + 1
 @Killrockstar: It's pot luck I think, mine arrived with cranks loose but chaiin guide can not be undone
  • + 1
 @Killrockstar: prepare your drill. Get some Speedout bits to help quicken the process.
  • + 1
 @rewob: oh gawd, I literally just last week snapped one of my speedout bits working on my 4x4 after snapping the brake rotor screw.
That was a bitch to drill out....
  • + 1
 Had another go at the chain guide bolts with an allen key I didnt mind bending, finally got the bolts undone but made some sparks in the process, WTF are they doing torquing them up so tight ?
  • + 1
 @bigburd: No.... f*cking.... Kidding....
  • + 22
 1 - I agree that it's not worth 4K
2 - I certainly agree that I end suspensions are better

But come on guys, reading the comments section here, one always feel like every guy around here is Aaron Gwin.

The truth is for most people the boxxer RC is waaaay more than what they can push to the limit - which by the way is really high.

I don't deny the WC is better, I'm just saying that it's more about confort. You can't call a boxxer RC garbage...

As far as transmission, for a bike park rig, is it seriously so important?

That said, I bought a Canyon.
  • + 0
 Having spent a day on a rental bike with the Boxxer RC, that fork was terrible. I am 215lbs and I couldn't get full travel to save my life.. It hit a wall at about 7in. And the high speed compression was so bad, it felt like my CX bike in the chatter...
  • + 4
 @lumpy873: I believe you, but I doubt - since it was a rental - that it was spec'd with the spring you'd have chosen if the bike was yours. And usually you don't tune a rental as precisely as you would with your own bike (otherwise, either you tune bikes really quickly, or rent it for a very long time Wink )

Again, my point was not to deny a WC fork is better than a RC (I actually regret that I didn't spent the extra bucks to get the WC version when I bought my bike) but come on, a better rider than me and you will still be better and faster with a RC, and you and I will still be better than less advanced riders even if we skip the WC for a RC. It's about confort, for most folks around here, it won't significantly change their riding abilities...

Besides, I'm almost sure than a modern day RC is better than a few years old WC or TEAM.

Plus, I think it's safe to say that a good share of the guys complaining about the RC are not able to PROPERLY (like Vorsprung properly) tune a WC boxxer. I'm pretty sure I can't.

I rode and owned "high end" forks too, and yet I wouldn't call any fork in the boxxer range "garbage", even if I would certainly not pay $4000 for a bike spec'd with a RC and ugly house-brand parts. Smile
  • + 19
 And axle size debates in 3...2...1... LET'S GET READY TO RUMMMMBLLLLLEEEEEEEE!
  • + 13
 Michael Buffer's representative will be in touch about the royalties now owed by you.
  • + 12
 So we are asked to accept boost on our trail/enduro bikes, but on its DH bikes Specialized goes for a narrow off market axle width?!
  • + 10
 Exactly! 135 X 12 has been around for quite a few years now, we know that, curious to see it on a new frame and with a straight 1.5" head-tube. Neither of these things bother me, just shows how so much is just MARKETING. Regardless, I agree, this bike is overpriced buy a full $1k.
  • - 4
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 29, 2016 at 1:46) (Below Threshold)
 How cool is it in 2016 to spend 10 minutes fitting the rear wheel and swearing like a pig. 142x12 is superior to 135 because it makes the installation muuuch eaiser. Get on with it... it's been 8 years gaed damn it.
  • + 3
 they have rocked the 135 on demos for years. when i had one i used a hope trials hub (only holds 7 speeds. really solid choice there.
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns: how would you know WAKI . . . . ?
  • + 15
 12x135, its outta control now.
  • + 2
 12x135mm is good, its been out years ago and my Giant Reign 2011 has it with 650b Specialized Roval Rims on it.

www.pinkbike.com/photo/14158862
  • + 1
 @boyblue1973: pretty sweet ride there
  • + 10
 4000 dollars for entry level suspension and a big chunk of the front triangle missing... and rear hub spacing that is incredibly annoying to deal with (no recesses that 142x12 has)
  • + 3
 How is the hub spacing "incredibly annoying to deal with" ? It's a downhill bike . . . . The axle clamps in the frame!
  • + 1
 Compared to 142 or 157, the hub slides around and doesn't have recesses to sit in and be automatically lined up for axle insertion, regardless of the axle clamping. Not all bikes are that bad, but sometimes the combination of chainstay length, tire size, drivetrain, and even frame alignment (no, not all bikes are made perfect) can be pretty annoying. I've had both 150mm hub and 135mm hub bikes that were annoying to deal with due to any combination of the above reasons. Tends to happen a lot less with 7mm worth of end caps. A fairly minor thing overall but when you work on a lot of bikes the little quality of life improvements add up.
  • + 4
 @j-t-g: the way it is set up (axle clamps) it's not designed for F1 pit stops but it is a sound design. Way stronger then a 142mm axle screwing into the frame! Changed a lot of wheels without an issue.
  • + 9
 @mikekazimer: If my local shop actually gave set up tips and didn't charge me up the wazoo for basic maintenance... People act like if you pay an extra 1300$ at a shop they are going to give you a foot massage and tune up your bike at the bottom of the lift after every run.

99% of shops don't even have multiple weight springs in stock so you can set the sag correctly, never mind the willingness to put in the time to help you.

All that said, this bike is over priced and has garbage spec but least some actual "engineering" went in to it.

The Transition is over priced garbage straight out of the Taiwan catalog plus 2000$ of fake bro cred. Trek still can't make seat stays that don't explode and the Kona is a Kona.
  • + 14
 It's worth mentioning that most shops (in my experience, at least) are more or less f*cking useless when it comes to DH bikes. A lot of shops don't keep many in stock and they definitely don't know how to set them up. I understand that you only get one DH guy for every hundred dentists on their high-end road and XC rigs, but still...it's frustrating to walk into a shop and know more about how to set up your bike than the "professionals" do. The smug, know-it-all attitude that seems to be a prerequisite for shop employees

Case in point: I walked into a shop last fall (a Specialized dealer), looking for new seals for my 2010 Fox 40. I was told "Naw, man. that's an old fork. No one makes seals for those anymore". I asked to see the QBP catalog and within 30 seconds, found the Enduro Seals for my 40. Got into an argument where he insisted they were the wrong seals. Wrote down the part number, went home and ordered them online. Installed them in 45 minutes without a problem.

As much as I want to support my local shops, the prices, the ineptitude, the attitude, and the hassle just isn't worth it. Now it's online shops for parts, and my next DH rig will be a direct purchase.
  • + 5
 @martis: nailed it. Plus the fact that it seems like everyone is getting the bro deal except for me. Why should I be the only sucker to pay full price. Another reason to go direct.
  • + 2
 @martis: You got alot of dentist in your town.
  • + 2
 @ischiller: It's the lack of fluoride in the water.
  • + 2
 @ischiller: A "dentist" is a bit of a euphemism for an upper-income weekend warrior who always has the latest and greatest pro-level equipment. Probably went over some heads.
  • + 1
 @martis: What is the non weekend warrior with pro level equipment called?
  • + 9
 "The notion that longer bikes are always better has gained traction over the last few years, but it's important to consider your riding style and preferred terrain when it comes to sizing, advice that's applicable to all mountain bikes, not just DH sleds."

Steve Jones' reviews certainly have had an impact haven't they...
  • + 1
 is there any other reviewer?
  • + 7
 When I bought my demo frame couple of years back I managed a full pimped out bike under 5k euros. And i mean the full deal, ti springs, fox suspension, hope crown, custom wheels, formula brakes.


Who the fk would pay 4k for an absolute garbage spec..^^
  • + 2
 And btw, Carbon top spec YT Tues costs 4500€ at the moment.. No-brainer which to choose
  • + 7
 12x135, 40lbs, $4000, rc suspension, below average spec, nothing special in the design, why would someone pay for this bike??? Something like a tr500, Jedi, or carbon aurum seem like much better options with either more innovation, adjustability or weight savings than the demo. Not to mention YT or Commencal for even more bang for the buck, but they are direct sales so couldn't be compared....
  • + 3
 nothing special in the design??? your shure about that?
  • + 5
 @mudmandhbrazil: what sets the demo apart from any other bike other than the one sided front triangle which doesn't offer any performance advantages?
  • + 4
 This actually had engineering work go in to it and was designed with a purpose. The only engineering on the TR500 is sticker color.
  • + 3
 @ibishreddin: Specialised will give you half a frame while Cannondale will give you half a fork. There's some funny thinking going on out there.
  • - 2
 Ahhh ok... let´s put design over functionality.
  • + 1
 I think it's a very beautiful design.
  • + 0
 @ibishreddin: No performance advantages? Specialized spent 4 years designing that frame. That's 3 years and 9 months longer than probably any other bike manufacture out there.
All I can say is, go ride one. There's a reason everyone f*cking loves it.
  • + 4
 @wibblywobbly: I was referring the tr500 to adjustability, Jedi to innovation and aurum for weight. Not saying there aren't others, but for less money all these options offer more than a demo.
  • + 6
 Ok, so the spec is not that great ... we can all agree on that!

The Guide R lack power, the Boxxer RC is "meh" (compression is a huge disappointment), the VAN RC is not as bad as its reputation though!
The rest actually works fine, even if there are definitely no bling parts (apart the frame?).

4k is definitely TOO MUCH!

On the other side, every "good" shop should give you at least 10% (up to 15%)
which makes the price go down to around 3600(3400)
Which ist still more than you would pay for your YT,
BUT
like @mikekazimer said you can't compare "direct brand" offerings to "regular shop" offerings... nuff said!

Oh and btw, i bought my last 2 Spec bikes with 30% and 40% (September season sales)


Ride on

yggi
  • + 6
 I bought this bike this summer and my local bike shop added a charger cartridge and they replaced the vox van with an ohlins ttx, that's pretty much the best suspension you can get as a hobby rider (in my opinion). I also upgraded the crank and the derailleur to SRAM X0, so far, I can say that this bike is defenitely worth it. Of course it's expensive (I payed 4300€). But it's defenitely worth the money, especially if you are a spesh fan like I am Smile
  • + 11
 #f*ckspecialized
  • + 9
 12x135 rear axel ... what about the revolutionary new size of hub
  • + 9
 Wonder what innovation comes next, 559mm wheels?
  • + 4
 I wish @mikekazimer would have gone into more detail about the low, concentric main pivot VS the ultra high main pivot on the V4 that he just came from. Would really like to know the riding trade-offs of the two dramatically different suspension designs.
  • + 3
 He can't ride that bike hard with those suspension components! Now a 40 and an Ohlins. . . . . . .
  • + 1
 The kinematics are the same
  • - 1
 @scottzg: I disagree, have seen even just a shock revalve change the whole feel of a bike let alone some components that really work with that frame. You ever ridin boxer rc's?
  • + 6
 Heavier and way more expensive than it deserves to be.. And..not super fun..Awesome!..Nice work Speshy.
  • + 4
 @powergavin: I don't know where you live in the uk but the minimum wage of £7.50 equates to £1170 roughly, and when you consider alot of riders are below 30, I'm pretty sure they are not clearing 3k :S
  • + 7
 Looks like a Seshs- .... Oh. Oh. Oh never mind.
  • + 1
 A specsion ?
  • + 2
 Shhhh, I think I just heard protour waking up
  • + 3
 I wonder if that super cool frame design translates into extra weight when made from metal?

On the fraying cables front, I had a repeat issue with an XT derailleur of all things. Turns out the cable was being cut by a sharp edge on the derailleur itself. A bit of filing and the latest cable has lasted just fine...
  • + 2
 How come the alu demo cost as much as the carbo Tues? Ze Germans are coming. This is remenisant of the merican auto industry in the 70s when the imports started coming in. Michigan rested on its lorals and now erryone knows quality and value comes from non merican cars. F150 vs taco ftw
  • + 1
 The price difference is because of their different business model. As discussed in the article above...
  • + 0
 @Patrick9-32: I don't care about biz model I care about value and my wallet. I see no innovation. Now motivation. Just a reason to shop around. I am ridding an older demo and love it but when it comes time to replace it...
  • + 6
 Will inspire alloyal following, no doubt.
  • + 5
 My bikes need to be semetrical. No lefty forks and no weird one sided frames. I just can't handle it.
  • + 2
 I thought that would bug me about mine but I completely forget it one sided, it's only when people point it out to me I notice.
  • + 2
 Since when Boxxer RC, Guide R, GX, X7 shifter is considered "garbage"? Just sayin'... And in general I do not fancy Specialized bikes because I believe that the specs that they usually place on their bikes is indeed cheap in relation to their high prices. Also, it seems that many have high standards in here and it also seems and they ride high end bikes. Really? Am I missing something over here?
  • + 2
 Then again, those guys are traveling at speeds that most of us can barely imagine and have different needs than that of a 'regular' rider

This statement is quite strange, sure in a given section/spot we ride slower but the same type of hit can occur in other places were we can ride faster than at this spot. So ramp can still be a good advantage.
  • + 2
 The YT Tues Carbon Comp is on sale right now for $3499. Better parts spec, a carbon frame, and Gwin wins races on one now. All for $500 less than the privilege of riding a Specialized.

Bonus points: Your bike isn't being assembled and set up by an angsty 19-year old fixie rat or bearded Surly fanboy.
  • + 2
 Oh, not to mention the YT is 3.6 POUNDS lighter.
  • + 3
 Specialize must be offloading their outdated 12x135 hub inventory by building them on this spec. They forgot people in PB are smarter than them and will see through their scheme.
  • + 2
 nice Article Mike, I tested this Demo 8 2016 Alloy and it is a good upgrade from the older predecessors, but don't have the money yet so I'm sticking on my 2011 Demo 8, but upgraded my wheels to 650B and it works.

www.pinkbike.com/photo/14194148

www.pinkbike.com/photo/14194145
  • + 3
 With the Germans making kick azz bixe at least spesh upgraded the frame last year. A session still looks like an '08 session. The cost of the demo will go to pay the spesh legal team to sue yt. Too bad patent is up.
  • + 2
 Am I the only one noticing that 20mm axles, 1.5 steerer tubes, 135mm rear spacing, and threaded bbs are back in style! I may be able to buy a frame that'll actually use all the components I already own if this trend keeps up. Hold on...that might cripple the entire industry!
  • + 1
 Find me a real DH bike/fork that doesn't run a 20mm front axle...

Can't think of any DH fork with a straight 1.5 steerer, they're all 1 1/8 or 1.5 tapered. The straight head tube allows for an angleset or a massive bearing cup.
Nothing wrong with that, bar weight but let's face it, we fret about DH bike weight too much, DH bikes are bloody light compared to how they were a few years back. (God, I feel old typing that.)

As for 135x12 spacing... lol no thanks, I'll stick to my myst's 150x12. Wide selection of off the shelf wheels, wide selection of dedicated DH hubs, can borrow mate's wheels if I need to, etc etc.
  • + 6
 Hate me or not, but despite it's alloy it still looks sexy!
  • + 2
 You are a very brave man admitting you like Specialized in this comment section!!
  • + 4
 @Jack-McLovin: well somebody has to give some credits for this unique design Big Grin
  • + 5
 it looks like all the pinkbike testers are 5'11 and they weight less than a bag of potatoes...good to know...
  • + 6
 I wonder how @Protour feels about this
  • + 2
 Rode this bike all summer in Jackson Hole and one trip to Whistler. It HAULS. I ride fast, loose and wild...I'm really glad this Specialized kept me in check Smile . Now selling it to save for a full carbon version.
  • + 1
 I've just came from the YT website and found that for the 4000 dollars that Specialized are asking for this, I could buy an aluminum Jeffsy 29er trail bike AND a First Love street bike, or a top of the line ANYTHING for much less than this. Nothing was priced higher than this, and this is your vanilla demo, it needs to be vanilla money too. Come on Specialized, it's a peddle bike, not a fleet of peddle bikes. Just saying. lol
  • + 1
 Specialized is also not a consumer direct operation. Just saying.
  • + 1
 What's the point of using a narrower wheel spacing, then throwing a spacer behind a 7spd cassette? I get the Boost spacing causing a heel clearance issue, but if you are already using that width to house a narrower wheel then adding a spacer for a smaller cassette it makes no sense- go to Boost (or whatever, really, just a standard still available), make it 7spd only and buy back the wasted space. Boom, stronger wheel, no cassette fitment issues, no wonky derailleur hacked up to fit. They design this stuff on Friday afternoon?
  • + 1
 It's designed for the xo-dh xd driver 7 speed! Why go boost for 7 speed? It actually is designed very well ! I understand the (big S) hate but facts are facts !
  • + 1
 "• 12 x 135mm rear spacing" -the Bike Industry has no clue which direction it wants to go with Standards cause they don't give a f*ck about consumers. It seems they kind of just make it as they go. They are just going to make us buy in the hype. 12 x 135mm is tried and true, always been, so is 26" Bikes.
  • + 1
 yes 12x135 and I have those wheels on my Giant Reign 2011, heres my Reign.

www.pinkbike.com/photo/14158862
  • + 1
 "The notion that longer bikes are always better has gained traction over the last few years, but it's important to consider your riding style and preferred terrain when it comes to sizing, advice that's applicable to all mountain bikes, not just DH sleds".

Oh yes. Glad to read that this "slacker and long you need" thinking stops.
  • + 1
 In our country this bike is 3700eur. I think this price is OK if you consider that Trek Session 88 is 5000eur, and it also comes with Boxxer RC, Fox Van RC. Yes, it has better wheelsets, and drivetrain than basic Demo but this is not worth 1300eur more!
BTW, i am not die hard Spec fanboy...i just want to say that te price of that model is not so bad.
And i also think that quality of pivot bolts & stuff is way better at Specialized than YT...
Just my 5 cents...
  • + 2
 Can't justify the price per component specs, but would love to ride this alloy bike, especially with upgraded suspension. Guessing that is also available. Always wanted to see how these bad boys feel.
  • + 1
 Rented one of these a few weeks back. My first thought "This thing is a tank" Rode pretty good. Agree it was loud. It was closing weekend so the brakes being shitty was just probably due for bleeding / new pads. Would deff. like to try the carbon version to compare.
  • + 5
 Looking forward to the positive vibes in the comments. Ah.
  • + 0
 - 135mm Rear Standard is a no go, like the offset rims a few years ago
- poor wheelsets in quality
- gamut is nothing for beginners who jump to short, there are to much parts damaged after a big hit
- ugly cassette, they just don´t listen to the riders. To much gears, even for racers. Most need no shifting and like it !
- 180mm rear disc is not enough when you have longer, extrem steep sections on your track
- poor bearing quality, better wash your bike only on wet days so the bearings last longer !

+ frame ready for long term heavy usage, resists big crashes, superior quality
+ cable routing is your own CHOICE, specialized get it here !
+ cranks strong, for those who accidentally overshoot big jumps, no need to upgrade
+ fork easy to upgrade with a better damper unit
+ rear brake standard is postmount
  • + 0
 I don't see a problem with 135mm.

In house wheelset is standard at this price from non direct sales.

Gamut bashguard is meh.

The cassette is 7 speed....

Poor baring quality? I heard every bearing is lipped and sealed on the new demos...

I've seen pro riders using 180mm rear discs in dh, I'm sure it is enough braking power for entry level spec.
  • + 1
 @Killrockstar: ah ok seems like i was to lazy to take a closer look, 7 speed, sorry thought it were 10 speed. And sorry, i thought they were the same bearings i had on my demos 2010 & 2014. Buyers can hope that the improvement is not only marketing bla bla.
Ok, maybe 180mm has other advantages, enough power, lighter, more control, but not very resistant. One Worldcup Run is not the same as riding a season in different bikeparks. Most Freeride Pros go to 200mm. Even for me 180mm is not enough when i´m riding a long steep short-cornered passage. Some companies sell it because they don´t want to make the postmount for 200mm and a the bike with an adapter looks not so clean when they introduce that bike. When specialized goes to 135mm with DT-Swiss Hubs a few years ago on the old demos, it was not possible to buy that hub from DT-Swiss direct. It was only made for Specialized. I have talked at the Eurobike 2012 or 2013 with DT-Swiss about that topic. They made marketing with 135mm money wise instead of keeping the existing standard (at that time it was 150mm) so that you don´t buy your hubs and rims somewhere.
  • + 1
 @fossydh: I totally agree that the 135mm hubs is limiting to what you can buy.
But luckily for me I love DT swiss, Chris King and Hope and they all have flavours available.

I am just about to upgrade my 180mm rotor to a 200mm, I have had a centerline on preorder for a while now, so I will soon be able to see the difference for myself.

And I don't know, to me I somehow doubt the 135mm back end is purely marketing, from what I have heard and read it was the pro riders who initially had the 135 back ends on their bikes and then spesh made it the same for consumer. But maybe I am buying into that.
  • + 1
 135mm for a 7sp cassette, has similar flange spacing as a 150mm for 10sp.

So, as strong of a wheel build, yet lighter, and better clearance in tight spots! Hmmmm, go figure.

Still a "no go" ?
  • + 1
 $4000 is the SGR...most bike shops will give you a better deal than the $4000 price tag! I paid $3200 for mine and if I did have to pay the full $4000...I would of looked the other way!
  • + 1
 $4000 is the Suggested retail price! Most bike shops will give you a better deal than the $4000 SGR. I paid $3200 for mine and if I had to pay the full $4000...I would of looked the other way!
  • + 0
 man I feel so much hate here why? a lot of Specialized haters here... why people hate Specialized that much? just because YT makes "the same bike" by half the price? I don't feel 4K too expensive for a beautiful aluminum DH bike since any good Enduro bike starts and 3K. 135mm reaur hub is shity? How Gwin won all that races with a 135mm rear hub Demo???
It's a beautiful bike it's a Specialized... ok the brand can make the price go higher but anyway there's a lot of technology involved.
I have a 2010 Demo and I love the bike it's so solid and trouble-free frame.
I don't like these Guide brakes they are noisy and fade a lot in long Bike park trails.
  • + 0
 No, this year they change it to 135mm wide the 2016 Demo 8 650 B, but Gwin rode the old hubs the 150mm wide ones on a 26" wheels.
  • + 2
 doesn't matter the axle size, I just don't get that hate on Specialized
  • + 2
 @mudmandhbrazil: LOL, agree. Its the price point they hate and the components comes with it. Specialized is pricey and not all people are happy.
  • + 2
 @boyblue1973: 2015 demo 8 was the year change buddy. Gwin won on this platform !
@mudmandhbrail What's wrong with 135mm rear? I don't get the hate thing either? They sponsor our local DH series . . . . . Look at all the Horst link bikes now the Spez patent ran out!
  • + 0
 @MX298: still Gwin, won the races mostly on the old 150mm hub width and 26er wheels, not on the newer ones. but it was a good for him and he is happy.
  • + 1
 This has nothing to do with hate. The bigger the sales of a brand, the less they care about what the customer is thinking about the details. Brands and part manufacturers should work together for the same best standards at a given time. For the riders benefit, e.g. easier upgradable parts or longer usage of your bike and parts or easier maintenance. Big names like specialized, sram and shimano are on their brand leader, money oriented ego fly and give a shit about if we discuss frame or part standards. When you go to change the standard of a part the company should give us good reasons for it. Some companies work on new rider oriented (and not marketing oriented) standards. Specialized should realize that. The two cable routing options or the cool damper maintenance is an exception but not the main reason to prefer that bike compared to another. The frame is the part of the bike that hold all other pieces together, so it should fit to you in form and function and should be affordable.
  • + 2
 @boyblue1973: also the 650b with 135mm. Rolling eyes.
  • + 1
 @fossydh: valid points and agreed.
  • + 2
 @adkrider: Lol, I know, youre right on.
  • + 0
 @MX298: even the 2014 S-works ia 135mm.
  • + 1
 Great event! love it, if you guys need professional bike lights, feel free to visite our website:http://www.ferei.com/en/product.asp?sid=1 , and email me:Email:ferei2@ferei.com
  • + 1
 You read this review yet @theminsta? Might be worth considering the frame for your next DH bike as you can swap all your parts over easily (the 12x135 rear end is a nice touch)!
  • + 2
 weight of the frame only please. its a bummer sicklines weight database is not updated. this frame must weight a ton for a 40 lbs bike!
  • + 2
 The carbon versions are pretty heavy compared to some other offerings, I don't think spesh was shooting for the lightest dh frame in the design.
  • + 1
 Besides the spec and price, who wants a 40 lb. bike anymore? Unless your strictly riding Whistler or Pro-level big mountain lines, whats the point. I'd take a 30 lb Enduro rig over that anyday... IMO
  • + 0
 And a 135mm rear end on a DHj bike? My trail bike is a 148mm.
  • + 1
 @twowheelfury: yes that's 135mm wide, I had those wheels and I put it on my Giant Reign 2011 coz it fits the front and rear through axle. Heres my Reign

www.pinkbike.com/photo/14158862
  • + 2
 @mikekazimer hey dude, can you guys review GTs DH offering? will end up being pretty relevant seems as GT sponsor Whistler Bike park now
  • + 1
 The Fury? We reviewed it a few seasons ago: www.pinkbike.com/news/GT-Fury-Tested.html.
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: fair enough dude, I just assumed that anything more than more than a season old is considered prehistoric in todays industry, dont want to mention any names but you know how it is when companies hold monopolies over the market Wink
  • + 2
 I dunno what all these comments about shitty spec for 4K have been up to for the past few years, my 2011 flatline was shit tier spec for 4k...
  • + 5
 so why the f*ck did you bought it then??? that makes u an even bigger fail
  • + 2
 It's actually comparable to a Trek Session 8. DH bikes be expensive.
  • + 1
 @viatch: no chill at all.
  • + 6
 @viatch: First off beautiful English, secondly the biggest fail is the assumption that I paid 4k for it (I paid $2900 for it but the local bike shop had them at 4k before taxes). My point was to people complaining like bottom spec downhill bikes being overpriced is something new.
  • + 3
 @viatch: Hahahaha! Leave it to a Specialized review to bring out the best in people.
  • + 1
 All big brand bikes are comparable at entry level,I buy Specialized cause the employees at the shop know what they are doing,local Trek and SantaCruz shops are kinda lost
  • + 1
 This bike is a hunk of poop. I've ridden both a factory spec'd Demo 8 and a factory spec'd V10 - I'll never look in the Demo's direction again.
  • + 2
 The caption says "no carbon to be found here" under the photo showing the carbon seatstays.
  • + 3
 Well... at least it doesn't look like a Session Smile
  • + 4
 What a joke
  • + 3
 Another fine piece of equipment by a great company
  • + 3
 Gotta be a typo on rear axle...right!? 135? GTFO!
  • + 0
 no, that is right 135mm wide rear axle 12mm diameter, I have those wheels on my Giant Reign 2011 installed, and I cant put it on my Demo 8 2011 because it is 150mm. So the new Demo is going short at the rear hub.
  • + 1
 @boyblue1973: Yea, that's a cool Reign and all, I just can't imagine that Specialized is going backwards 6 years in technology to bring back an outdated standard for a DH machine...no offense. Gotta be a typo.
  • + 1
 Would appear that they are in fact bringing back an old standard from 5 years ago...lol Trek goes wide for wheel stiffness, and Specialized goes narrower....wtf
  • + 1
 @ZenkiS14: It is what their riders requested.
  • + 1
 @ZenkiS14: no typo dor hub2 at 135mm wide for demo 2015 and 2016. I have those wheel myself and its 135mm.

You might wonder, the Specialized Stumpjumper 2015 has 142mm wide hubs and its an all mountain bike and Demo 2015 has has 135mm wide hub, there should be a reason, and I have both of the hubs and rims.
  • + 1
 @boyblue1973: there is a reason, it's so they could make the rear end narrower for racing.
  • + 1
 @Killrockstar: agree and to add on to that, Specialized Demo 2016 uses Specialized Slaughter tire, fast rolling tire at the center and long side knobs. perfect for racing.
  • + 3
 What a bunch of whiny bitches.
  • + 0
 I was about to write the same damn thing.
  • + 0
 I would never take an aluminum bike down a gnarly course. Carbon bikes exist for a reason!! Spend the extra money and at least be safe...
  • + 1
 Even with the current Value of the £ vs $ this bike ends up over $300 cheaper in the UK...
  • + 1
 IVE GOT A 2014 CARBON DEM0 8 COST £4200 NEW AT TIME 12 MONTHS LATER IT WAS WORTH £2200
  • + 1
 Bad timing mate.
  • + 3
 It's worth whatever joy you get from riding it. If you're looking for your investment to hold or improve its value buy stocks, not a bike. But you're gonna get your arse busted taking those stocks down a track.
  • + 3
 $4000 MOTOS FTW!!!!
  • + 3
 van r............
  • + 2
 Du aço!
  • + 1
 @andrextr: \m/ qué feito??? ainda biclas?
  • + 1
 @luis-beri: agora é mais fraldas xD
  • + 2
 Kona
  • + 1
 135mm??? Is it the new alloy standard??? Er, non carbon standard...
  • + 1
 Their carbon's (s-works) run the same 135mm! Eh?
  • + 1
 Bike manufacturer pricing are pervasive!
  • + 0
 I owned the 2013 Carbon Demo and it was still slow. I'll take my TR500 over this dinosaur any day!
  • + 1
 Comparing your 2013 Demo to the new geometry.... ok m9
  • + 1
 that gamut is so friccking ugly
  • + 1
 a few years ago i drived 2 hours to a rocky bikepark. At the beginning of my second run i knocked on a stone. Where other Bashguards would resist my gamut flow away (all four problem solver bolts broke). Accidentally my chain got into the rear spokes when i was rolling down and the rear wheel was also damaged. I have always a bunch of spare parts in the car including a second wheelset but no spare-bolts. Bikeshop was closed, session over. The Gamut wasn´t broken (only the bolts) , but i didn´t trust them anymore and switched to E-Thirteen. Since then no problems.
  • + 1
 Why the F do they put that 2002 looking bashguard on it?
  • - 1
 jus buy a sender or tues for waay better value for money and carbon to boot.
  • + 1
 Looks like a tue
  • - 2
 For anyone who just scrolled to the comments to get a idea of the bike, let me sum it up in two words: f*ck SPECIALIZED. The end.
  • + 1
 Protour loves a demo!
  • - 1
 You can find bikes with much better specs for half the price of this bike...
  • - 3
 Not brand new you can't, and the spec on this bike is more than adequate for the roughest of downhill.
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