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  1. #1
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    Need an entry level XC racer

    Hi,

    I want to start to get into XC racing and am looking for a hardtail around $1500 Canadian dollars. So far I've looked at the 2004 Specialized Stumpjumper ($1700), 2004 Giant XtC 2 ($1600), 2004 Cannondale F600 ($1500) and 2004 Cannondale F600 SL ($1300, just an F600 without discs). I can't decide between these 3 bikes, the specialized has the nicest fork, the giant is extremely light and well spec'ed, and I really like the headshok on the Cannondale and how well the lockout works (also, being a student I like how it's the cheapest). I really would prefer something with a lockout as I plan to ride a lot of flat doubletrack and road for training. Anyone have experience with these bikes or suggestions at any other in this range? I'm 150 lbs and about 5 '8 if it matters.

  2. #2
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    If you're on a budget (and what student isn't!) I'd look for left over 03 models. Perhaps you could find something like a 03 Kona Kula for $1500 or a 03 Rocky Mountain Elevation for about a grand.

  3. #3
    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    All the one's you listed and especially the one's KrisA listed are good bikes.

    I will say, that for XC racing, you will be perfectly fine with Vee brakes. I would actually recommend them over discs for racing.

    Have you considered a lightweight full suspension XC bike? If so, the Specialized is hard to beat!

    L8R
    "Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW, What a Ride!" - unknown
    "Your Bike Sucks" - Sky Yaeger

  4. #4
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    No, FS is out of the question, they just cost too much and I want a bike I can ride on the road too without bobbing all over the place. I think I'm leaning towards the Cannondale F600SL, not many shops around here have left over 2003 models so it's slim pickin's in that category although I certainly appreciate the advice.

  5. #5
    Scooby Snax
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    I'd go for the F-600sl, Its pretty light, and gets the power to the ground.
    I'd try and check about the warranty on the C'dales produced before bankruptcy had been filed, does anyone here know what the status on that deal is?

    I would be less inclined on the Giant, only because they use an integrated headset... just my opinion,Leits just say finnesse is not an adjective used to describe my riding...

  6. #6
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    I believe Cannondale was bought by a well standing company and are on good terms now financially. Their website states they have a lifetime warranty on their frames.

  7. #7
    Sport Class Racer GT_ATB32's Avatar
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    Dude, don't buy a bike, build your own. I got a Leader Bike Frame that weighs 2.3 lb. It is an XC machine!!!!
    I used ebay and spent $625 USD and got a bike worth $1100 USD!!!!!!

  8. #8
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pual
    I believe Cannondale was bought by a well standing company and are on good terms now financially. Their website states they have a lifetime warranty on their frames.
    I thought Cannondale just restructured under bankruptcy and were not purchased by anyone. It was their motocross division that was dragging them down. They ditched that and have emerged much better off for it.
    1999 K2 OzM 2001 Aegis Aro Svelte OCP Club Member
    "Be liberal in what you accept, and conservative in what you send." -- Jon Postel, RFC1122

  9. #9
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    You mentioned you looked at a 2004 Stumpjumper.
    I'm selling a 2002 Specialized Stumpjumper M4 for $600.

    M4 Manipulated Alloy Frame, 17 (medium)
    Brand new Shimano Deore rapid fire shifters
    Brand new Avid-5 brakes and levers
    . Brand new Shimano SPD -505 pedals
    Front Fork - Rock Shox Duke XC, 80mm travel
    Front Derailleur - Shimano Deore LX
    Rear Derailleur - Shimano Deore XT
    WTB SpeedMaster Rims
    WTB Moto Raptor Tires
    9-speed

    Ridden 1 1/2 seasons. My husband bought a Superlight.

  10. #10
    Senior Member hanshananigan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pual
    No, FS is out of the question, they just cost too much and I want a bike I can ride on the road too without bobbing all over the place. I think I'm leaning towards the Cannondale F600SL, not many shops around here have left over 2003 models so it's slim pickin's in that category although I certainly appreciate the advice.
    Look around for something with a rear shock lockout. I made the switch this year from a hardtail K2 Zed 2001 to a FS K2 Razorback Team 2001. They have similar geometry, so the big difference was the FS. It's really improved my riding on rooty trails, and the lockout works great for roads and long, clean climbs.

  11. #11
    2 Track Mind Endo's Avatar
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    I have a 20 lb XC demon

    It's a Giant XTC hardtail frame. I built it up superlight and from the frame up, but word on the street says that Giants come built with KILLER parts out-of-the-box. The Stumpjumper hardtails are very good deals for your limited budget as well. Also check out maybe a 3 year old Litespeed or Airborne Frame from ebay... Titanium lasts (very close to) forever!

  12. #12
    BloomBikeShop.com BloomBikeShop's Avatar
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    I have an XTC SE2 and it's a great bike except for the integrated headset. I thought it would give out last year but it didn't (yet), but I would stay away from it.

    My experience with Cannondales and Headshoks has been ****ty at best. I think the Headshok is the worst fork there is.

    I'd go with the Specialized you mentioned or look into a Trek 8000.

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