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  1. #1
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    New to biking, a few Questions!

    Hey guys
    Brand new here, be gentle! I've recently become interested in taking up mountain biking, but am not too sure where to start.
    I've had the same bike for a few years now, and use it mostly for getting around town. It is a Mountain Bike, so to speak, but it's seen better days.
    Basically, I was wondering if I should go out on some beginner track with my oldish bike just to try it all out, or if I'm better off just splashing out on a new one. I have a small bit of experience in cycling on roads, but I gave it up as it was too dull for me. I also do the occasional cross country type cycling on a flat beaten track near me, nothing too intense about it.

    And for a future buy, my budget is maxed at €500. I've been looking at a few bikes online that might suit me.

    -Voodoo Hoodoo:
    Halfords Ireland | VooDoo Hoodoo Mountain Bike

    -Carrera Kracken:
    Halfords Ireland | Carrera Kraken Mountain Bike 2015

    -Giant ATX 27.5:
    ATX 27.5 2 (2015) | Giant bicycles / Giant bikes Ireland | Ireland


    However, I'm seriously stretching the budget with the Voodoo Hoodoo, so I might scratch that off. I was also looking into the Decathlon bikes, but cant justify spending €700+ on one.
    Which of the bikes would you advise me to buy?
    Would I be better off buying a better, yet second hand bike? Like so: Trek 4900 MTB*For Sale in Limerick : ?400 - DoneDeal.ie
    Also, if you have any other bike suggestions, I am based in Ireland so keep that in mind.

    Sorry for the wall of text, and yes, I'm a fool who loves the flashy bikes!

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    What is your current bike? Unless it is just flat out falling apart I'd go ahead and hit the trails on it.
    All the bikes you are looking at are also entry level bikes so if your bike is also an entry level bike even an older one there isn't going to be a HUGE difference.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canker View Post
    What is your current bike? Unless it is just flat out falling apart I'd go ahead and hit the trails on it.
    All the bikes you are looking at are also entry level bikes so if your bike is also an entry level bike even an older one there isn't going to be a HUGE difference.
    My current bike is a Jupiter Atlas, it just needs a good bit of love, and some new brakes. Bit of a shaky and loud chain as well as non working back brakes, but yeah it should do fine for a while. I hope

  4. #4
    Senior Member CliffordK's Avatar
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    I agree, if you are new to biking, or have had a bike parked in the garage for years, dig it out and try it out again. There may be a reason why it was parked.

    I'm not seeing the exact Trek model. I'm seeing one with a MSRP of about $620, so you're not saving a bundle on that one.

    However, in general, there are often good deals on used bikes worth considering, especially if you do your own maintenance.

    If you're doing roads and not very technical trails, then consider the cyclocross bikes too.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
    I agree, if you are new to biking, or have had a bike parked in the garage for years, dig it out and try it out again. There may be a reason why it was parked.

    I'm not seeing the exact Trek model. I'm seeing one with a MSRP of about $620, so you're not saving a bundle on that one.

    However, in general, there are often good deals on used bikes worth considering, especially if you do your own maintenance.

    If you're doing roads and not very technical trails, then consider the cyclocross bikes too.
    I bought that bike for general use; cycling to the shops, down to the beach, and the occasional rough terrain, so it's been used alright, just treated poorly.
    I'll have a look around for some better looking second hand deals so. Thanks for the help!
    As for another model, I found this: Rockrider 500 MTB - Blue - Mountain bikes - Bikes - Cycling - Over 50 sports
    Is it any good?

  6. #6
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    I'm quite determined now to spend my paycheck on a new bike, especially since my local area have invested in a small yet delightful pump track. I went on it today and loved it!
    Anyone have opinions on the Cube Aim Disc 27.5"? As found here: Cube Aim Disc 27.5" Hardtail Bike 2015 | Chain Reaction Cycles
    I love the frame on it, and the price is tempting, however I'd like to hear some first hand opinions from people, if possible.

  7. #7
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    Looks to be about the same as the one you already have. You may be better off spending some money on fixing the Jupiter and saving until you can afford a better bike.

  8. #8
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    The Carrera and the Giant are not really specced with good parts.

    Just to give you some ideas of other bikes around your budget from EU shops witch I think for the money offer more bike:

    Bike24 - Ghost KATO 3 Mountainbike 2015 - black/red/white

    Cube Aim SL 27.5" Hardtail Bike 2015 | Chain Reaction Cycles

    Lapierre Raid 300 26'' Komplettbike Mod. 2014

    Trek X-Caliber 7 650B / 27.5'' MTB Komplettbike Gr. 34,3cm (13.5'') starry night black/lime green Mod. 2015

    Serious Ridge Trail 29 günstig kaufen ? fahrrad.de

    Some of these webshops will offer free delivery.
    But you will have to know first what kind of bike you want, wheel size, frame size, frame geometry.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrozenK View Post
    Looks to be about the same as the one you already have. You may be better off spending some money on fixing the Jupiter and saving until you can afford a better bike.
    I had an internal debate with myself as to whether I should buy or upgrade, but I've decided not to pump my hard earned cash towards a bike I dont find hugely attractive. The frame is faded and it's covered in rust. Sure I could fix her up, but I'd rather keep that as a spare for casual cycles, where I wont be too stressed about keeping my eye on it when out shopping and whatnot.


    Quote Originally Posted by Klassicbike View Post
    The Carrera and the Giant are not really specced with good parts.

    Just to give you some ideas of other bikes around your budget from EU shops witch I think for the money offer more bike:

    Some of these webshops will offer free delivery.
    But you will have to know first what kind of bike you want, wheel size, frame size, frame geometry.
    Thanks for the help- this is exactly what I was looking for.
    I really love the look of the Trek X-Caliber 7 there, but unfortunately cant find a site that sells it around my budget and delivers to me. It sounds very petty I know, but black bikes don't really do it for me. I want something that looks good AND cycles well.

    To answer some details, I'm slim, and around 5'11", so a 20" frame is what I'm looking at. I'll be sure to pop in to the local Halfords to make sure the frame size fits well before I buy one. I'm impartial to the wheel size, the 26 and 29ers both have positive and negative features in my opinion. And I'm afraid frame geometry isn't something I know much about, so I'm not too bothered either way.


    Thanks for the help guys, I appreciate it!

  10. #10
    Senior Member osco53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slickster View Post
    , but black bikes don't really do it for me. I want something that looks good AND cycles well.

    slim, and around 5'11", so a 20" frame is what I'm looking at. I'll be sure to pop in to the local Halfords to make sure the frame size fits well before I buy one. I'm impartial to the wheel size, the 26 and 29ers both have positive and negative features in my opinion. And I'm afraid frame geometry isn't something I know much about, so I'm not too bothered either way.

    Thanks for the help guys, I appreciate it!
    Most Definitely pick the exact color you want ! (Every body knows red is the fastest btw)

    * Slim, 5'11",,, that's me, 32" Inseam and 172 pounds now... I ride a 19" frame full squish I'd be happy on a 20 I bet but I know from a test ride a 21" frame stretched me out too far.

    * 26" tire selection is getting weak, 29er's "Wagon Wheel" bikes are great but unless you get real good (Expensive) wheel sets they will flex and drive you mad. Plus all things being equal they are heavy,,,unless you spend big coin...
    I had a 29er,,, I will say it was fun but I did not have the engines to spin up those big hoops,, STRONGER riders get far more out of wagon wheelers than I ever could...

    * 27.5" This is what FIT me (My riding style) the best, The Middle ground gave me a light, stiff wheel yet better roll over than 26"
    At 5'11", slim and lanky IMO I looked like a clown on a circus tricycle when I rode a 26"

    * "frame geometry" at your budget,,Ignore this, You gotta ride and fill your skills bag before you need to consider this aspect.
    Save that for your second bike....

    As for weather or not you will stick and like this sport/pastime ?

    Ride to Live and Live to Ride or die sooner as you get soft and fat watching television.....

    PS_0801_FART_HUG.jpg
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” Mark Twain

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by osco53 View Post
    Most Definitely pick the exact color you want ! (Every body knows red is the fastest btw)

    ...

    As for weather or not you will stick and like this sport/pastime ?

    Ride to Live and Live to Ride or die sooner as you get soft and fat watching television.....
    Red is nice!

    Seriously, thanks for the help. So ideally I'm to look at a 19" frame with some bright colours, fancy suspension, hydraulic disk brakes, and 27.5" wheels..... Sounds good to me.
    What do you think about this model? Cube Aim SL 27.5 green´n´blue online kaufen | Bikeunit.de
    I've noticed that the German sites are much, much cheaper than most others.

    I know I'll love this sport/ hobby/ pastime, the real question is if I'll grow fat and lazy and stop going. Oh wait, that's never going to happen... Fast metabolism whaddup

  12. #12
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    Wagon wheels? Did qe go back to 2005? I've been riding 29rs for the last 8 years and I have never felt the wheel flex be an issue nor have I felt that the wheels were sluggish or hard to accelerate. The weight issue is not that noticeable either. What i can tell you is that on roots 29r wheels make a significant difference. As in "omfg I can actually ride over this *****" If you don't have a lot of roots to deal with, they won't make as big a difference. And big wheels usually mean a longer wheelbase, which can make negotiating tight turns harder. But that is a wheelbase issue, not a wheel size issue.

    Put a 650b (aka 27.5) wheel next to a 26" wheel and you'll be hard pressed to notice the difference. The 26-inch rim has a 559mm diameter, the "27.5" is 584mm. The 29r rims (aka 700c) are 622mm, by the way. However, it seems like the industry has decided that 27.5 is all they want to sell. And they may work fine for you, some people like them better. And for long travel bikes smaller wheels make sense, it is easier to make them fit and have a decent geometry and the suspension matters more than wheel size at that point. For a hard tail and at your size I'd go with a 29r. Unless they are not common in Ireland (someone here said 29rs aren't too common in the UK) then I'd go with whatever wheel size is easier to find spares for.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrozenK View Post

    Put a 650b (aka 27.5) wheel next to a 26" wheel and you'll be hard pressed to notice the difference. The 26-inch rim has a 559mm diameter, the "27.5" is 584mm. The 29r rims (aka 700c) are 622mm, by the way. However, it seems like the industry has decided that 27.5 is all they want to sell. And they may work fine for you, some people like them better. And for long travel bikes smaller wheels make sense, it is easier to make them fit and have a decent geometry and the suspension matters more than wheel size at that point. For a hard tail and at your size I'd go with a 29r. Unless they are not common in Ireland (someone here said 29rs aren't too common in the UK) then I'd go with whatever wheel size is easier to find spares for.
    I'll keep 29ers in mind then, thanks.
    On another note, what do you guys think of this bike?
    Giant Talon 3 LTD 27.5" blue/black/orange online kaufen | Bikeunit.de
    or
    http://www.fahrrad.de/testrad-cube-a...ck-406874.html
    I've managed to find a way to get German shops to ship to Ireland, which is great for me.
    I'm just looking for a bike that gives me the best bamg for my buck (~550 or so)
    Thanks for the help
    Last edited by Slickster; 07-31-15 at 11:19 AM.

  14. #14
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    The Cube seems to have slightly better parts, but they are pretty close.

  15. #15
    Senior Member osco53's Avatar
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    Last edited by osco53; 08-01-15 at 03:12 PM.
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” Mark Twain

  16. #16
    Senior Member osco53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrozenK View Post
    Wagon wheels?

    Put a 650b (aka 27.5) wheel next to a 26" wheel and you'll be hard pressed to notice the difference. The 26-inch rim has a 559mm diameter, the "27.5" is 584mm. The 29r rims (aka 700c) are 622mm, by the way. However, it seems like the industry has decided that 27.5 is all they want to sell.
    Check out the comparison first:

    650B-wheel-size-comparison-diagram.jpg

    I did put a 650b/27.5 right next to a 26 Incher,,, It was obvious to me..

    The bulk of the handling advantage of the 26" system Is In the 27.5 without the awful 29er wheel and tire weight and rim flex....

    BUT still Its a bike fit thing,,
    Big wheel bikes for big/tall/ riders...
    27.5 for those who feel the 26 is a little small and want more without loosing anything....

    For me,, my riding style I find that small changes,, even tiny changes can make a world of difference In bike feel and performance for a given rider and trail condition...

    As for, "However, it seems like the industry has decided that 27.5 is all they want to sell. "

    They sell what people want or they sell less,,, The people want choices, The people have spoken I think..

    The year before last all my five local bike shops sold only a very few 27.5's compared to 29er's
    Last year they could not keep 27.5's In stock,
    This year It has leveled off for the 27.5 putting them mostly dead even with 29er sales, per most of the shop staff I talked to.
    And for what I see on the trails,,, This holds true...

    I did see a 26" bike last week end,,first one In a month...
    Last edited by osco53; 08-01-15 at 02:56 PM.
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” Mark Twain

  17. #17
    rigamortis tortoise LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Trek is bringing back 590mm for their kids road bike! I think we need some 590+ knobbies!!!!

    KRX - Kids' Bikes collection - Trek Bicycle
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1995ish Park Pre Pro 825 * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  18. #18
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    Alright guys, so I've spent the majority of my time searching for a bike that'll give me the best bang for my buck, and I can't for the life of me make up my mind. That's where you come in!
    Which of these bikes would be considered a "good buy", and why? Included in this list is the previously mentioned Cube Analog.
    I couldnt find decent reviews for any of them, so I'm asking you bike heads here.
    Thanks

    Ghost Tacana 4: http://www.probikeshop.com/en/ie/gho...15/104663.html

    Viper TR 350: http://www.probikeshop.com/en/ie/vip...15/103557.html

    Calibre Two.Two: http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/calibre-...n-bike-p275612

    Calibre .50: http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/calibre-...n-bike-p275620

    Edit: Just saw osco53's reply with regard to wheel size. I still haven't made up my mind in that department, I'll have to actually cycle one of each to make up my mind. And yes, I know I have no 27.5" bikes there, but this list is a WIP so I might add/ replace a few of them down the line.


    You know what I'll throw in the Giant too: http://www.bikeunit.de/giant-talon-2...ge-392003.html
    Last edited by Slickster; 08-01-15 at 03:20 PM.

  19. #19
    Senior Member osco53's Avatar
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    Giant Talon 3 LTD 27.5" blue/black/orange online kaufen | Bikeunit.de

    That one..

    Remember It won't be your last, Ride It like you stole it and get some skills,,
    This or that bike means little to you now.

    Make sure it fits, A test ride is a must....
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” Mark Twain

  20. #20
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    I was seriously looking into that one last night, I love how it looks and it supposedly performs very well, according to bikeradar.
    I won't be able to test ride that exact model, but I'll call into a shop to check out frame and wheel size for a bit.
    If all goes well I should have it ordered by next week.
    Thanks for the help!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by osco53 View Post
    Giant Talon 3 LTD 27.5" blue/black/orange online kaufen | Bikeunit.de

    That one..

    Remember It won't be your last, Ride It like you stole it and get some skills,,
    This or that bike means little to you now.

    Make sure it fits, A test ride is a must....
    Sorry to throw in a curveball like this, but I'm after seeing what looks like a great offer for a second hand bike locally. Would this be a better deal?
    Giant Talon2 29er*For Sale in Limerick : ?450 - DoneDeal.ie
    It looks nice, with a good few upgrades too. Now it is a 2013 model, and a 29er, but that fork looks gorgeous
    Anyway let me know what you think.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by osco53 View Post
    Check out the comparison first:

    650B-wheel-size-comparison-diagram.jpg

    I did put a 650b/27.5 right next to a 26 Incher,,, It was obvious to me..

    The bulk of the handling advantage of the 26" system Is In the 27.5 without the awful 29er wheel and tire weight and rim flex....

    BUT still Its a bike fit thing,,
    Big wheel bikes for big/tall/ riders...
    27.5 for those who feel the 26 is a little small and want more without loosing anything....

    For me,, my riding style I find that small changes,, even tiny changes can make a world of difference In bike feel and performance for a given rider and trail condition...

    As for, "However, it seems like the industry has decided that 27.5 is all they want to sell. "

    They sell what people want or they sell less,,, The people want choices, The people have spoken I think..

    The year before last all my five local bike shops sold only a very few 27.5's compared to 29er's
    Last year they could not keep 27.5's In stock,
    This year It has leveled off for the 27.5 putting them mostly dead even with 29er sales, per most of the shop staff I talked to.
    And for what I see on the trails,,, This holds true...

    I did see a 26" bike last week end,,first one In a month...
    Thanks for posting that picture, it really illustrates my point about 26 and 650b being really close in size. The difference in diameter is only 25 mm. A 2.4 26-inch tire actually has about the same diameter as a 2.1 650b tire. 650b isn't really 27.5, it is 27".

    As for weight difference, the Stans Arch in 29 weighs 60 grams more than the 26. Tires have about the same difference in weight so a 29r wheel and tire may weigh about 100 grams more. Probably noticeable, but not more than you'd save from going from wire to kevlar beads. Flex on the wheels? Again, not even when I was running very weak WTB rims on a quick release fork was that an issue. Nor was it flex an issue when I've done self-supported backpacking races where I had 20lbs or more of gear on the bike.

    And while yes, there is some truth to saying that bike manufacturers will sell what people want to buy. The demand for 27.5 vs 26 just wasn't there. People have pretty much stopped buying 26 inch bikes because the availability has gone away. And it didn't go away for lack of demand. It is just easier to produce two wheel sizes than three.

  23. #23
    S'toon trail rider! MisterK's Avatar
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    Look for quality in your wheels and hubs. Everything else can be dealt with later much either and for much less cost. Buying a new bike with a 9spd drive train doesn't seem realistic to me these days. Def shoot for a 10spd.
    I'd say shoot for a decent fork, but the sun tour upgrade program really eases the pain of a lower end fork by discounting a new sun tour fork if you so decide you need extra performance up front at some point

  24. #24
    Senior Member osco53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slickster View Post
    sorry to throw in a curveball like this, but i'm after seeing what looks like a great offer for a second hand bike locally. Would this be a better deal?
    giant talon2 29er*for sale in limerick : ?450 - donedeal.ie
    it looks nice, with a good few upgrades too. Now it is a 2013 model, and a 29er, but that fork looks gorgeous
    Anyway let me know what you think.

    ***** a test ride is a must imo *******

    I know some fast riders on 29er's, But hey they are pretty strong riders,, are you ?
    I started on a 29er, rode it three summers and loved it, Then I rode a 27.5 and that was that..

    My wagon wheeler 29er:

    cap 1.jpg And the last summer I had upgraded the crappy xcr fork to the Raidon,,,

    Then this fast little skittish animal came to me and It was a perfect match

    IMG_20150627_072208_414.jpgIMG_20150627_072304_177.jpg

    On my very first ride on this full squish 27.5 I was faster on every trail and segment I ride,, per Strava.
    Was It the wheels or the full squish ? I will never know, but I was suddenly cleaning trails and making climbs I had never made before..
    Both bikes stock were 31 pounds.
    Last edited by osco53; 08-03-15 at 04:32 PM.
    “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” Mark Twain

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slickster View Post
    Sorry to throw in a curveball like this, but I'm after seeing what looks like a great offer for a second hand bike locally. Would this be a better deal?
    Giant Talon2 29er*For Sale in Limerick : ?450 - DoneDeal.ie
    It looks nice, with a good few upgrades too. Now it is a 2013 model, and a 29er, but that fork looks gorgeous
    Anyway let me know what you think.
    That bike is better than the other ones you are looking at and it appears to be in good shape. It looks like the fork has an air spring and hydraulic damping (good) but it is a 120mm travel. That bike came stock with either an 80mm or a 100mm fork. Putting a fork with more travel will slacken the head angle which will affect handling. It also puts more stress on the frame, which can make it fail. A 20mm increase isn't crazy, and the bike doesn't look like a chopper but I'd take it for a spin before buying it to make sure you like how it handles.

    Also, the frame looks small to me. But it could be the fork making the front taller.

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