2012 Spearfish Lineup

Today we take a quick look at the 2012 Spearfish range of bikes and frame.

Our 2012 update takes a great product and makes it even better, while also bringing more choices to the table for you to choose from.

We still consider the Spearfish the perfect bike for ultra-endurance XC racing and riding. Its goal continues to be efficiency of suspension and pedaling. Our endurance geometry results in balanced handling and is unchanged from 2011. Our sponsored riders have proven it works when a rider is fresh, but also 23 hours into a 24-hour event, or after six hours of ripping singletrack with your buddies.

The Spearfish continues to use our pivot-minimizing suspension design, creating a lighter and stiffer rear end with fewer wear and maintenance points. Through thoughtful design, the shaped stays deflect a mere 5.2mm as the rear end moves through its 80mm of rear wheel travel, removing the need for a pivot. In fact, if we did use a pivot it would rotate less than one degree during full suspension compression.

Three Levels of Bikes, Two Levels of Frames

The most obvious change for 2012 is that there are now three levels of Spearfish complete bikes, and two levels of frame-only offerings. Each of those levels of bikes and frames gets a different component spec, and there is also a difference in the rear dropout between the Spearfish 1 and Spearfish 2 and 3 frames.

New Rear Dropout Design

Designed in conjunction with the new Horsethief model, all the 2012 Spearfish frames receive a new forged dropout that is both lighter and sleeker than the original. It was designed to be forged and then machined specifically to either the 142 x 12mm (RockShox Maxle) thru-axle standard or the 135 x 10mm QR standard.

Above, the Spearfish 1 rear dropout: 142 x 12mm Maxle standard...

...and the Spearfish 2 and 3 rear dropout: 135 x 10mm quick-release standard

Here’s the quick take on each of the Spearfish bikes and frames.

Spearfish 1

For 2012 this frame is offered in a beautiful Speedy Black anodized frame. Anodizing does more than just create a durable finish. It also is a lighter weight finish than powdercoat paint.

We’ve collaborated with Fox to bring you a Float RP2 rear shock with Boost Valve, tuned perfectly for the Spearfish 1, and Fox F29 RL up front on the complete bike.

The Spearfish 1 uses the new rear dropout design, machined to only accept a 142 x 12mm Maxle (ala the Horsethief), adding considerable torsional stiffness to the rear triangle, boosting rear wheel tracking.

Spearfish 1 will be available as a frame (including Lip-Lock seat collar and Fox RP2 shock) or a complete bike. See the Spearfish 1 complete bike spec here.

Spearfish 1 Complete Bike MSRP is $3499, available February 2012.
Spearfish 1 Frame MSRP is $1399, also available February 2012.

Spearfish 2

We admit it…we’ve got a thing for orange bikes. Our Spearfish 2 complete bike will come with a Super Orange powdercoat finish. Our Spearfish 2 frames will be available in a choice of Super Orange or Green Machine colors.

Spearfish 2 uses a RockShox Monarch RT3 rear shock with custom-specified tuning. The shock features adjustable rebound and adjustable threshold for dialing in rear suspension performance.

Spearfish 2 receives the new 2012 dropout design, but machined for use only with a standard 135 x 10mm quick-release.

Spearfish 2 will be available as a frame (including Lip-Lock seat collar and RockShox Monarch RT3 shock) or a complete bike. See the Spearfish 2 complete bike spec here.

Spearfish 2 Complete bike MSRP is $2649, available November 2011.
Spearfish 2 Frame MSRP is $1099, also available November 2011.

Spearfish 3

2012 brings not just the higher pricepoint Spearfish 1, but also a more affordable version in Spearfish 3.

Available only as a complete bike with Green Machine powdercoat paint job, Spearfish 3 uses a custom-specified RockShox Ario RL Air Shock with adjustable rebound and lockout.

Once again, the frame uses our new rear dropout design machined for 135 x 10mm quick-release use.

Spearfish 3 will be available only as a complete bike. See the Spearfish 3 complete bike spec here.

Spearfish 3 Complete bike MSRP is $2199, available November 2011.

For those that are riding our Spearfish already, we thank you for your support and hope you are enjoying the bike. For those that are considering this as a new steed, we hope you appreciate the choices you now have. Enjoy the singletrack!

This post filed under topics: New Product Spearfish Ultra Racing

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Mark Rane

Mark Rane

I?m Mark, living the dream as an Industrial Designer, married to my amazing wife, and now trying to keep up with our new baby girl! I love to see the world and I?ve lived everywhere from New York to Paris to Utah to California, and a few places in between. I started mt. biking in the soggy forests of Oregon almost 15 years ago, and I?m still coming to terms with the mountain-less Midwest - but who can pass up an opportunity to work for Salsa? If I?m not with the family or on my bike, I?m probably tinkering with an old Saab 900 or trying to manage the ever-growing list of things to fix on our old house.


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Rob Evans | September 8th, 2011

Great write up on what looks to be three great bikes. There is a lot to like about the Spearfish in any of it’s three flavors but I think my favorite thing about is that Salsa undrstands most people can’t drop $4,000-$7,000 on a bike. Thanks for thinking of the little man trying to keep the peace with the Mrs. and yet still be able to tear it up on the trails.

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Wally | September 9th, 2011

Nice improvements to the #1 model in everything but color. Anodizing is a good thing, it’s pretty common and very available to the public, we all have anodized metal all around us, and other manufacturers use anodizing for their bicycles too but they at least have the creativity to pick a color. You guys going the Henry Ford route and offering anodized finishes in any color as a long as its black?

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Gavin | September 9th, 2011

All I need to say is you guys get it!I just hope that you can make enough of them to keep pace with demand, I still can’t find a shop with a 2011 model in my size.

Justin Julian

Justin Julian | September 9th, 2011

Gavin, thank you for good words on the Spearfish.  As for the demand, we are excited about the amount of bikes we have coming in for 2012. We upped the ante on our inventory across the board.  We also have signed on a number of new retailers for 2012. We will be updating the dealer locator towards the end of the month.  In the meantime, I will send you an email and help you find the retailer closest to you.

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Anthony | September 9th, 2011

I have been riding a Spearfish all summer and really do like it, I did swap out the Monarch to a RP23 and a few other things. I like the team-up with Fox on the Spearfish 1, if I were buying one today I would buy that model as I think the Fox parts work better than the RS stuff. Either way, great bike for long rides. One thing, will these Stan’s rims come ready to go tubeless - taped at least? Just a thought as it would make a lot more sense.

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Anthony | September 9th, 2011

Oh yeah, can’t you guys put up pictures of bikes with the spec’d tires? Just a poke in the ribs as they all seem to have tires spec’d other than what is shown.

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Chad | September 9th, 2011

You know salsa, you guys put my marriage under stress…...she is slowing starting to understand.

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Eddie | September 10th, 2011

I like the orange color alot. New dropouts are really nice also. Did you add any clearance for low-q cranks with this years frames?

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Jim C | September 10th, 2011

I for one LOVE the color of the Spearfish 1.  I like the “stealthy” look of the black anodized.  Great choice… and hoping I have one in my near future.  Thanks, Salsa.

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Nick | September 11th, 2011

Do you have a frame/shock weight for the new spearfish 1 frame?

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Justin White | September 12th, 2011

Nick, The Spearfish_1_Frame/Frame_Tech page lists the following:

Frame Weight   S (5.18 lbs/2349g), M (TBA), L (TBA), XL (TBA)

Hope that helps,


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Justin | September 12th, 2011

The Orange is a sweet lookin’ color!  I’m anxious to see the write up on the El Mariachis, any idea when you guys are gonna post?!

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Mark | September 12th, 2011

Just replaced the Dos with a Spearfish built up with a Fox RLC.  First ride last weekend and I am very pleased.  The rear suspension action is barely noticeable, only on huge dips do you notice it.  It is a really tall bike though.  I ride a large and the view from up there is great.  And it’s green!

Kid Riemer

Kid Riemer | September 13th, 2011

Justin - We’ll post the info on the El Mariachi’s sometime next week. Sorry for the delay but we are all out in Nevada for Dirt Demo and Interbike.

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Adam B. | September 13th, 2011

I’ve already got my Spearfish 1 on order.  It’s the first stock bike I have bought in years.  I just can’t wait for a bike that addresses literally everything I want in a full sus. 29er.  The anodized finish is an awesome touch.  Thank you Salsa.

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Ajak | September 23rd, 2011

The boyz at kulshan cycles in bellinghamm hooked me up good. Waiting for my Fargo Ti to arrive and then heading south with it, it is gonna tear up our local lastre roads hear in costa rica. Since we have no pavement for a hundred miles any direction.
I wanna yank you already for the permagrin.
Lookin for central American distributors?

Salsa brava yippee!

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WV Cycling | September 28th, 2011

Understated, sexy, and kind of mysterious. This bike excites the WV Cycling crew in all the wrong ways. I think I called out one of your bike’s names in my sleep last night.

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Jay B. | October 2nd, 2011

I recently bought a salsa bike with the ZTR archer rims and 2.2 race king tires. How would you recommend setting this up for tubeless?

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Luke | October 12th, 2011

I read a review of the Spearfish in Dirtrag that spoke of an issue with the bolt connecting the seatstay/ rocker link/ eye of the shock being too long. It caused excess play, with the bolt unable to be fully tightened. The review said it was an easy fix, by adding a washer, and Salsa found the same issue and fixed it the same way…

Has this issue been remedied for the 2012 Spearfish frames?

Thank you

Kid Riemer

Kid Riemer | October 12th, 2011

Luke: The 2011 Spearfish frames did not have that problem, nor do the 2012 Spearfish frames. Re-read the article and you’ll see they explain that it was a simple hardware issue on a pre-production frame/bike that we sent them. No worries. It is not an issue.

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Luke | October 13th, 2011

great..thank you!

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El Kincho | November 17th, 2011

Hi, Just wondering if there is any problem matching the spearfish frame with a 51mm offset fork (G2) geometry wise?? Thanks.

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Todd | November 19th, 2011

Love my Spearfish, just wish my large frame had a higher bottle cage mount.

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Jason Hamilton | November 20th, 2011

Hello I purchased a 2011 Spearfish I’m wanting to change the running gear to a 10spd XT triple. Will I have any clearance issues to the frame?

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Doug | November 23rd, 2011

Looks like I have something to save up for over the winter. The Spearfish 2 is the perfect price point for me with all the components I would want. Thanks Salsa!

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Lemon | December 6th, 2011

I could never afford one of these bikes, but they are sure nice to drool over

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Jake | December 27th, 2011

Was planning to pick up the 2011 model and missed out. Looking at the 2012 the #2 seems like a close match. What are the component differences between the two? Shock? both cartridge hubs? x9 crank on 2011 and x7 on 2012? And QR vs. Maxle fork. anything else of note? Thanks.

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Shankapotamus | January 13th, 2012

Just picked up a 2011 SF…...can’t wait until to hit the trails this weekend with my daughter

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Steve Smith | February 8th, 2012

I love the looks of this bike and what it could bring to the table. I have a friend that only rides Salsa bikes and I want one. My one question is what is the warranty on these bikes. A lifetime warranty on the frame may seal the deal for my pending purchase of a new ride.

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Ron | February 11th, 2012

Really looks great! I’m interested in getting the complete black anodized straight from you guys, unfortunately there’s nobody from my neck of the woods that has one, so i’m not sure if it will fit me. I’m only 5’7” tall and usually go with small/medium frames, just to show you how freakishly short my legs are, my pants are usually 29” inseam. Will the complete black anodized model fit me straight out of the box?

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ian | February 25th, 2012

The write up on the spearfish is great.Can the bike be used with 80mm forks and how does it climb on loose surfaces.

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Matt | March 5th, 2012

Just got a 2012 spearfish and cannot figure out how to get the front wheel off.  Help

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Shankapotamus | March 5th, 2012

@Matt…what model…is it a through axle with a bolt instead of a quick release?

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Matt | March 7th, 2012

Its a through axle and I finally figured it out that flip the quick release over into the notch to undo it.  I am now feeling a little “special” for not being able to figure it out in the first place.

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Shankapotamus | March 7th, 2012

Join our unofficial Spearfish Group to post pics, rides, questions or various whatnot

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Shankapotamus | March 7th, 2012

Here ya go…https://www.facebook.com/groups/255552797848022/

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WV Cycling | March 8th, 2012

That’s when you know you have a fanbase… When a single bike has a fan club :P

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Jason | April 1st, 2012

I ordered a size small Spearfish 2 on March 16th.  I need to start spearing some trails…any ideas on when will they be shipping?

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john bain | April 18th, 2012

I ride at 21inches which is slightly out of a lg and less than a xl.  With the Spearfish 29 which bike is the best direction..And its the #1 I’ll be buying.
I live in Fountain Hills , Az. (part of Phoenix Valley) what dealer do you recommend? thanks john bain

Bobby | April 18th, 2012

Size is something honestly best discussed in person with the shop.  They will be able to work with you to determine best fit.  As for which shop, we have all the details for our Arizona dealers on the dealer locator here on the Salsa site.  The ones closest to you would be Bicycle Garage, Flat Tire Bikes, Sunday Cycles and Rage Cycles.

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FJTORT | April 25th, 2012

When will the Spearfish 2 (Small) be shipping?

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Jason | May 8th, 2012

^^ Can you please give a ballpark answer to the above question…

Bobby | May 8th, 2012

Sorry for the delay in getting a response posted up for this one.  More Speafish 2’s are pretty close and should be shipping to dealers by the end of this month or the first part of next month.  We are currently waiting on a few more parts to arrive so that we can assemble and package the bikes to get them out the door.  Thanks for your patience!

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FJTORT | May 14th, 2012

My small Spearfish 2 is in! Just have to pick it up… The ORANGE is Bad AZZ in person!

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Jason | May 15th, 2012

I got my small SF2 last Thursday!  Only a short ride so far…digging my first 29er and first suspension mtn bike.

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Robert | May 19th, 2012

I ordered a Salsa Spearfish I in November of 2011 and I have already paid for half of it.  My dealer has not been able to obtain one yet.  Is there any chance that you folks could make some more bikes before the end of the summer? I am getting a little anxious to do some riding.

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