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The Ruby’s Future Shock head tube suspension system takes the sting out of bumpy roads with 20 millimeters of vertical travel up front. It does this without feeling squishy when you hit smooth pavement—as long as you’re sitting down.
When rolling over big cracks in the pavement or hitting bumpy dirt paths, the Ruby absorbs turbulent terrain, and the suspension action is barely noticeable when riding on the flats. However, when we stood up to sprint, we could feel the suspension compressing and decompressing as we pushed and pulled the handlebars side to side. The movement was even more noticeable on steep, twisty descents as we pressed the front end of the bike into a corner and back out again.
The bike comes stock with a medium weight (25-pound) spring that riders can swap out for a firmer 40-pound option for less suspension or a softer 13lbs spring for more suspension. We’d opt for the firmer spring since most of Boulder’s dirt roads are fairly tame and need minimal damping. Reserve the heavier springs for truly cobble-esque rides.
Beyond head tube suspension, the Ruby is built for comfort with relaxed endurance geometry. It has a long 1010mm wheelbase (size 56cm) and 72.5-degree head tube angle that makes for a smooth, stable ride. The Ruby’s 160-millimeter head tube length is misleading because it fails to include the suspension system’s extra 55-millimeter height. With that included, the tall head tube length measure a very upright 215 mm that took some getting used to.
The Ruby’s squishy front end and relaxed geometry is countered by an unexpectedly stiff rear end. Specialized uses one of its stiffer carbon layups – the same type used on its top of the line aero race bikes – for a pleasantly responsive ride. The Ruby’s threaded bottom bracket yielded just 0.53 millimeters at the bottom bracket in our lab test, putting it on par with some of the stiffer aero race bikes we’ve tested.
Shimano Ultegra Di2 drivetrain is a smart spec with its 11-32T cassette and compact 50/34T chainrings. This adds versatility for spinning up mountains and logging long miles on flat and rolling terrain. The bike’s disc brake-equipped Roval carbon hoops with thru axles provide a smooth ride rounding out the Ruby Pro’s complete comfort package.
Component Highlights: Shimano Ultegra Di2 drivetrain with FSA K-Force Light 50/34 crankset and Ultegra 11-32 cassette; Shimano R785 hydraulic disc brakes; Roval CL 32 Disc wheels