Stanton Sherpa 853 Standard first ride review£1,749.00

Strap on your vintage tweed jacket and knee pads

Stanton’s Sherpa is the 29” brother to the ever popular 27.5 Slackline. There is likeness, with Stanton using the same Reynolds 853 front triangle and stiff 525 cold worked chainstays on both bikes. Stanton shows great attention to detail in the build quality of its frames with a vintage bespoke touch. The Sherpa is beautifully finished from every angle. It’s also pretty light weighing 13.2kg.

It's a classy, capable, chromoly trail tamer with plenty of swagger
It's a classy, capable, chromoly trail tamer with plenty of swagger

Stanton Sherpa 853 Standard frame and equipment

The frame has space enough to fit 29” or 27+ wheels and is fitted with replaceable dropouts so you can run singlespeed, 12x142mm or standard 9mm QR. Stealth eyelets are present despite the fact the bike is specced with a fixed 30.9mm RaceFace post and there’s full length gear outer to keep shifting slick even in filthy British conditions.

There is no chain device or mounts to be seen with only the 32t narrow wide chainring for security. Bottle cage bosses are found on top of the downtube.

Stanton Sherpa 853 Standard ride impression

On the trail the Sherpa is stiff and direct, yet comfortable and a beast to be tamed when it comes to fast, technical descents. Fortunately it doesn’t sacrifice many of the benefits of smaller wheels either, feeling ever agile and alive to the challenge.

Uphill it struggles slightly due to a tighter 11-36t gear ratio when compared to the others on test. Through flowing singletrack it gives the impression it’s lighter than it is, largely due to the low rolling mass of the budget Mavic Crossride wheelset. This set up, although tubeless ready, comes with tubes fitted. With 30psi in the fast rolling Crossride tyres, we found a great mix of comfort and control without risk of snakebites. We did however lose significant tension in a few spokes when riding hard.

Our only real gripe was the narrow 740mm wide RaceFace bars. Considering the lively feel of the bike, an added inch would be worth its weight. Stanton’s own ‘lock on’ grips are comfy with or without gloves and branded metal end caps are a classy touch. We also liked the SDG seat, which whilst not at all bulky, proved perfectly comfortable for our bony backsides.

Stanton Sherpa 853 Standard early impression

The Sherpa is sprinkled with top kit, making for a very attractive spec that’s good value. The addition of a stealth dropper post would be ideal, but is forgivable at this price point. Wider handlebars though are a must to get the best out of the Sherpa through tight turns and trickier technical sections.

This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine.

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