The category to which the “Specialized Fuse Expert 6Fattie” belongs is that of the fun hardtails that, with the arrival of the 650b Plus tires, are about to return strongly popular because they are less radical than the previous models, easier to drive and even more comfortable.
1 – GEOMETRY
– Steering angle: 67 ° which, combined with a 120 mm Manitou Magnun fork, brings the front wheel hub a little forward. This immediately inspires great confidence in the guide.
– Corner frame: 73 °, so you can ride pretty well riding the Specialized Fuse Expert 6Fattie.
– Upper tube length: the tested model is in size M and has a rather long upper tube: we are talking about 60.9 cm.
– Height of the central movement: 30.5 cm for all sizes. Therefore, a rather contained value that leads the biker to insert himself even more between the two wheels. This is also shown by the slight curvature of the seat tube, to ensure, among other things, that the rear wheel is closer to the bottom bracket.
– Tank length: 43 cm, that is really short for a bike with 650b Plus wheels. The merit is to be ascribed to the Diamond Stay design of the lower stays: with this trick (which you see in the picture above) and through the standard Boost on the rear hub and on the crown, the rear wheel manages to get very close to the seat tube. The result is a very compact frame that allows the fitting of tires with section up to 3.0 “.
– Wheelbase: 114 cm in size M, that is about 4-5 cm more than an Xc hardtail. The reason is in the longer upper tube, in the open steering angle and in the 120 mm fork.
– Set up in the saddle: a person 180 cm tall with a seat height of 74 cm and riding the Specialized Fuse Expert 6Fattie is as comfortable as on a Stumpjumper Fsr 650b.
The front triangle, in fact, is inspired by this last bike: 67 ° steering, longer upper tube and low bottom bracket.
On the Fuse, however, the rear suspension is missing, but the feeling with the driving is that of a latest generation trail bike.
2 – ASCENT BEHAVIOR
– Torsional rigidity of the wagon: we are talking about a light alloy front with a strong propensity to solidity and the torsional rigidity of the wagon can only be high.
– Regular offroad pace: there is a lot of traction available, speaking of a front, provided however that you guess the right tire pressure.
– On high slopes: the 73 ° steering column helps a lot to push on the pedals and to maintain a correct position in the saddle.
3 – DESCENT BEHAVIOR
– Torsional rigidity of the wagon: difficult to see evident bends on the wagon. If anything, the deformation of the rear tire can be felt, but above all on high-grip surfaces. The precision of driving is however very valid and is one of the most pleasant sides of this type of bike.
– Stability: the absence of the rear suspension does not play to make stability downhill, because inevitably we have to do an extra job to keep the bike on the desired trajectories. However, the Plus tires, the open steering angle and the correct body position downhill play a very important role.
5 – FRAME TECHNICAL DETAILS
– Space between rear tire and wagon (in case of mud): the space is not very abundant with the 3.0 ”tire. If there is mud better mount a 2.8 “.
– Cable management: simple but effective. Only the rear brake cable has an external passage, while all the others pass inside the down tube.
– Weight of frame and bike: the weight of the frame is not declared, while the detected weight of the bike is 13.48 Kg in size M and without pedals. The simple conversion to tubeless of the tires (among the other highly recommended) allows to remove a couple of pounds, but the weight remains high. The Plus tires, with Wtb Scraper i45 rims (45 mm internal width), the light alloy frame and the economical components do not allow to do better than this.