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Old 06-18-06, 09:02 PM   #1
BubbaDog
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Suggestions for a New MTB or Hybrid?

I have parted ways with my Kona singlespeed, in exchange for a healthy credit at my local LBS . I am looking to get a new MTB or Hybrid to allow me to pass my old HiTen Steel Diamondback Outlook on to my son. The LBS carries Trek, Specialized and Gary Fisher, here's what I'm pondering in my price range :

Trek 4500 MTB - '05 model on closeout for $389
Trek 7.2FX Hybrid - $379
Trek 7.3FX Hybrid - $419

Specialized Hardrock Sport MTB - $359
Specialized Rockhopper MTB - $469
Specialized Expedition Sport Hybrid - $319

Gary Fisher Merlin MTB - '05 model on closeout for $299
Gary Fisher Wahoo MTB - $389

Feel free to jump in with opinions, pros/cons, personal experiences, rants/raves, etc....

B'Dog
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Old 06-18-06, 10:21 PM   #2
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I put 2,000+ miles on my Trek 3900 mtb in a year, which I believe is the same as the 4500 without disk brakes. I think it's a solid, dependable ride. Bit heavy, but with slicks I've had a lot of fun on it.

I test road the 7.3 and found it to be very good as well in this price range. Felt fairly equivalent to my 2004 Giant Cypress SX, except without any creaks and noises.

Don't know what kind of riding you like, but if I were making the choice these days I'd go for the 7.3. I have no experience with the Specialized bikes.
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Old 06-19-06, 08:38 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BubbaDog
I have parted ways with my Kona singlespeed, in exchange for a healthy credit at my local LBS . I am looking to get a new MTB or Hybrid to allow me to pass my old HiTen Steel Diamondback Outlook on to my son. The LBS carries Trek, Specialized and Gary Fisher, here's what I'm pondering in my price range :

Trek 4500 MTB - '05 model on closeout for $389
Trek 7.2FX Hybrid - $379
Trek 7.3FX Hybrid - $419

Specialized Hardrock Sport MTB - $359
Specialized Rockhopper MTB - $469
Specialized Expedition Sport Hybrid - $319

Gary Fisher Merlin MTB - '05 model on closeout for $299
Gary Fisher Wahoo MTB - $389

Feel free to jump in with opinions, pros/cons, personal experiences, rants/raves, etc....

B'Dog
depends on what you ride...an MTB for off-road works well, but is a bit of a grind on asphalt, especially for longer rides.

If most of your riding is on-road, or light gravel, the Trek 7.3fx is amazing. My daughter has the 7.5fx and she rides circles around the roadies...these bikes climb like goats, cruise at roadie speeds and are extremely comfortabe. The 7.6fx has a road bike drive train, but the 7.7fx is bike heaven (10 sprocket cog set & triple chain ring!)

You'll find the low end specialized a bit stiff and not great climbers...i think that you'll be tempted to upgrade...the Trek 4500 would be my choice.

we ride a lot of different terrain here so we each have full sussers for the trails, HT's for light trail and concessions, and hybrids for asphalt. A good example is my little kid's stable: Stumpjumper FSR, Trek 7600zx, and a Trek 7.5fx
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Old 06-19-06, 09:33 AM   #4
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I purchased the Tek 7.3Fx over the 7.2 because of the better components such as the cranks. The gearing is well spaced and a good compromise between a mountain bike and a road bike. It is a good all round bike for my use which is bike paths and roads. The bike is designed strong enough to use for touring if you desire. The wheels seem to be strongly built also.

My only suggestion would be to get an adjustable stem, but that was just my preference.
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Old 06-19-06, 10:32 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BubbaDog
I have parted ways with my Kona singlespeed, in exchange for a healthy credit at my local LBS . I am looking to get a new MTB or Hybrid to allow me to pass my old HiTen Steel Diamondback Outlook on to my son. The LBS carries Trek, Specialized and Gary Fisher, here's what I'm pondering in my price range :

Trek 4500 MTB - '05 model on closeout for $389
Trek 7.2FX Hybrid - $379
Trek 7.3FX Hybrid - $419

Specialized Hardrock Sport MTB - $359
Specialized Rockhopper MTB - $469
Specialized Expedition Sport Hybrid - $319

Gary Fisher Merlin MTB - '05 model on closeout for $299
Gary Fisher Wahoo MTB - $389

Feel free to jump in with opinions, pros/cons, personal experiences, rants/raves, etc....

B'Dog
If going offroad- with just the occasional foray onto roads then the Trek 4500 or Specialised Rockhopper are your best bets. If it mainly on road then one of the hybrids and go for the spec that suits, Then Test Ride. Of the two MTB's I suggested- I would go for the specialized but still test ride.

If you wanr a rant from me- I would look at the inhouse stuff fitted to the Treks. This is what I find lets them down - including the wheels. Specialised normally make a better-lighter bike but still the problem of Inhouse stuff but their inhouse is better than Treks. Gary Fisher are part of the Trek company and same inhouse problem as treks.

That is me being ultra picky but look for weight of the bike- look for comfort and see what the wallet can afford. If it was me-I would go for a Kona- or Bianchi- or Giant or ?
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Old 06-19-06, 02:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stapfam
If going offroad- with just the occasional foray onto roads then the Trek 4500 or Specialised Rockhopper are your best bets. If it mainly on road then one of the hybrids and go for the spec that suits, Then Test Ride. Of the two MTB's I suggested- I would go for the specialized but still test ride.

If you wanr a rant from me- I would look at the inhouse stuff fitted to the Treks. This is what I find lets them down - including the wheels. Specialised normally make a better-lighter bike but still the problem of Inhouse stuff but their inhouse is better than Treks. Gary Fisher are part of the Trek company and same inhouse problem as treks.

That is me being ultra picky but look for weight of the bike- look for comfort and see what the wallet can afford. If it was me-I would go for a Kona- or Bianchi- or Giant or ?
I've found that what Trek does well, they do...what they don't, they go to outside suppliers. The Bontranger wheels, tires, seats (these suck), bars and such, aren't bad when compared to other mfg's at the same price points, Mrs. M. has a Kona HT which is a good example of the way Kona has gone...usually 2'nd class components for a 1'st class $.

Mrs. M. just picked up a 2006 Trek 7300, a great frame and build (except for the seat) for price...my daughter's Specialized has a lot of their in house components (seat post, seat, bars, tires, wheels, etc.)...its not bad, but she upgraded the seat post, seat, peddles, and bars in the first few weeks

Just a long way of saying that when you line up 3 similar bikes from 3 mfg's at similar price points, you get 5 opinions
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Old 06-19-06, 06:41 PM   #7
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I looked at your signature. You have several bikes including a roadie and a tourer. Sooooo if your looking for a pure MTB for off road use, I have a 05 Rockhopper and I recommend it. By the way, $469 is a great price for a 06 Rockhopper. But the Rockhopper is an MTB, I really don't like taking if on the road. If you are looking for a compromise, or a MTB that is also somewhat at home on asphalt, then go with Gary's and jm01's recommendation and go with the Trek 4500. I have freinds with 3700s and my son has a 820 (basically a steal frame 3700) and they're very comfortable on the road and off road, good all around bikes. When I was buying a hardtail last year, I considered the 4500. The dealer said the same thing Gary did, the differnces between the 4500 frame and the 3700/3900 is not that great. (But there is a big difference between the 3700/3900 and the Wahoo according to my dealer, check the measurements.) I think you'll like the 4500 since you plan to take it on road and off road and the Judy shock is nice (IMHO). I don't know much about the hybrids so I'll pass on any comments.
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Old 11-12-07, 08:53 PM   #8
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I have a FX 7.3 and recommend it for general use. It is a bit heavy for long road trips and not really an off road bike.

I would have prefer somethign a little lighter but the lighter versions have the wheels which are low on spoke count and the bike shop warned me away from them, for urban use.

I see that trek also has bikes like the Soho made especially for riding around towns. I used to use thin road wheels and they never buckled but they had a lot of spokes too, and most road wheels these days are spoke challenged.

The FX 7.3 is recommended for around town and a bit of gravel.
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Old 11-12-07, 10:13 PM   #9
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Do you want a MTB or a hybrid? Hard to give an opinion without knowing what you want the bike to do.

The '05 Marlin for $299 looks like a good deal, but then, you already have an '06.
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Old 11-13-07, 05:36 AM   #10
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I have a Wahoo which I use strictly off-road and it works well. Mine has V-brakes and they function well as long as you don't go muddin', which you shouldn't anyway.

I also put a thudbuster post on it and replaced the fork with a Platinum Air. Kinda defeats the purpose of buying an inexpensive bike I suppose. Still, it's a good ride. A little heavy, but so am I.
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Old 11-13-07, 07:23 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by stapfam View Post
If going offroad- with just the occasional foray onto roads then the Trek 4500 or Specialised Rockhopper are your best bets. If it mainly on road then one of the hybrids and go for the spec that suits, Then Test Ride. Of the two MTB's I suggested- I would go for the specialized but still test ride.

If you wanr a rant from me- I would look at the inhouse stuff fitted to the Treks. This is what I find lets them down - including the wheels. Specialised normally make a better-lighter bike but still the problem of Inhouse stuff but their inhouse is better than Treks. Gary Fisher are part of the Trek company and same inhouse problem as treks.

That is me being ultra picky but look for weight of the bike- look for comfort and see what the wallet can afford. If it was me-I would go for a Kona- or Bianchi- or Giant or ?
Agreed, they cut corners on the wheels at the lower price levels....that is why they are 'low priced'.

Check this out: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/b...os8/index.html

Last edited by FloridaBoy; 11-13-07 at 07:29 AM.
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