Accessibility Widget: On | Off

Cannondale Trigger 29er vs. Scalpel 29er

Create New Tag

9/20/2012 8:42 AM
Edited Date/Time: 4/21/2016 10:22 AM

Hey there - first post so go easy on me if this is in the wrong place!

I'm looking into getting a new cannondale and am stuck between the new Trigger 29er 3 vs. the Scalpel 29er 3. They're both around the same price point but want to make sure I'm getting the ride that best suites my needs rather than jumping on the new technology train just for shits and giggles. My gut tells me the scalpel is more of what I need but looking for some advice to support my purchase.

I ride in Northern VT, typically Fellowship of the Wheel trails, some trails in Stowe, with the occasional trip up to the Kingdom Trails. All of my riding involves a fair share of climbing that varies from fire roads, to smooth singletrack, to roots and rocks galore.

I'm riding a 2001 Specialized FSR-XC right now - which old as it sounds - had been treating me great but is on it's last legs. I'm concerned the Trigger is going to feel super heavy in comparison but am also worried I won't get the increased amount of travel and downhill comfort I've been missing on my current bike with the Scalpel. Thoughts?


10/16/2012 11:20 AM

Nothing? anyone ridden either or these bikes or the RZ120?


10/29/2012 5:17 PM
Edited Date/Time: 4/21/2016 10:22 AM

Dear Joe:

I was thinking the same thing. I fell in love w/ the scalpel when it came in to my LBS. (sexy) however, I was concerned that it was XC not trail and it only had 4 inches of travel. I then looked at the Trigger 29er. I think its a better bike especially for Vermont. If you look at the articles you can get away with doing a lot more of the terrain you'll find in vt. and New England; even ski hills with a trigger than with a scalpel which is strictly race. The key is that adjustable dyad shock. From reviews I have seen you get up hill of a scalpel with down hill of a tail bike. More versatle. My LBS is going to discount trigger 2 with Fox Dyad for $3,700.00 I think its worth it over the Trigger 2 with the static shock; it's the Dyad that makes the bike. Save for a few more months; its only been 11 years on you Sepcialized; what's another month or two til you save up the extra.

The dyad has had several years on the Jekyll, so I think its a proven technology. If you read the reviews (and there are tons) you will go with the Trigger.



11/8/2012 7:32 AM
Edited Date/Time: 11/8/2012 7:33 AM

thanks mike! do you think there's any/much weight saving in going for a Trigger 29er 2 over a Jekyll 3? They're fairly comparable as far as components go but not sure if the frame weight varies much.

I've really got to demo them both because at 5'9" and 165lbs I'm hesitant to hop on the 29er bandwagon. I'd really just like to compare the two bikes climbing since their DH capabilities seem to be matched in suspension.


1/13/2013 6:05 AM

I ride a scalpel 29er 2 in NH. It's very much a xc race bike and I do sometimes wish for a bit more travel, but that all goes away when climbing. My previous bike was a Rize 3 with 130mm and it was more stable on the descents. I've taken the scalpel to KTA a couple times and for the most part it's perfectly suited for that terrain(darling hill), but you might be happier with the trigger on trails like J-Bar.


1/13/2013 3:02 PM

I'd personally would go with the Scalpel. I'm personally not a huge fan of the Lefty. I also like the rear suspension design on the scalpel as well.


1/14/2013 6:36 AM

thanks for the feedback guys! I think I've come to the conclusion I really just need to go demo both of them + a Jekyll since I've never even ridden a 29er before and not sure if at 5'9" and 170lb how much I would benefit / enjoy it.


1/14/2013 12:31 PM

I'm riding a 2000 FSR XC. I agree it was a great bike. Before that I had a 1994 s works FSR with a chromoly front triangle...awesome bike. I got a sick deal on a 2012 Scalpel carbon 2 29er at my LBS, so that helped with the decision. I didn't ride the trigger, but I did demo a 2012 Stumpjumper carbon 29er. I didn't like the long travel. The Scalpel felt more familiar (although way better) like my 2000 FSR's travel. At 40, I think my technique is probably not going to change much even if I go with the heavier long travel bike. I demo'd 4 bikes and the scalpel was clearly the best all around bike. I take delivery in Feb and can't wait. Hope that helps.