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Old 11-24-05, 11:41 PM   #1
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What is the Best Hardtail frame for a under $1000 bike?

whats your opinion? if you dont mind and have some time, please add a few words why you picked your frame. I am talking about a under $1000 bike that you think has the best frame for a trail riding hardtail.
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Old 11-24-05, 11:47 PM   #2
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We talking Frame only or Full on Build?
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Old 11-25-05, 12:11 AM   #3
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full built bike. I am interested to know which of these complete bikes have the best (strong, capable, and trail tough) frame. thanks for your interest. any idea?
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Old 11-25-05, 12:12 AM   #4
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I was wondering that too. But I was thinking more in the lines of strength and durability of a hardtail complete build. Some model lines have the same frame used on $600 complete builds to $1000 complete builds, depending upon components.

By "best" do you mean geometry, durability, performance, ride or weight?
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Old 11-25-05, 12:13 AM   #5
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Oops. I posted same time you did. Sorry for asking what you answered just prior.
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Old 11-25-05, 12:19 AM   #6
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weight is not a major consideration for me. I dont race and like it tough it out if it feels heavy. This bike should be for trail riding, no major jumps or drops and not for light weight XC either. for the frame my order of priority would be:

1. strenth
2. durability
3. performance
4. construction (butted, heattreated, gussets, reinforcement etc.)
5. geomatry

is that little more clear? please let me know. Thanks a lot.
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Old 11-25-05, 02:17 AM   #7
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You didn't list price. I'd take another custom titanium frame for a compliant XC ride. But what you're asking is so vague, there is no answer. Your thread title conflicts with your real question - what you really want to know is what we chose, and why. There is no best. I like my Cannondale, but find it a bit too stiff sometimes. It was a $3,500 build, and I got it from my brother for about $750 when it was a few months old. Hard to beat, when it's your size. I hope he tires of his Bullit soon...
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Old 11-25-05, 08:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Expatriate
You didn't list price. I'd take another custom titanium frame for a compliant XC ride. But what you're asking is so vague, there is no answer. Your thread title conflicts with your real question - what you really want to know is what we chose, and why. There is no best. I like my Cannondale, but find it a bit too stiff sometimes. It was a $3,500 build, and I got it from my brother for about $750 when it was a few months old. Hard to beat, when it's your size. I hope he tires of his Bullit soon...
hi there, thanks for your response. you are right, my question is vague, but that is intentional. I wanted to have more people engage in the discussion. to answer your conflict argument, I would say, I wanted to know what you think is the best. I requested for your opinion, knowing that opinions are subjective and it reflects one's personal experience and biases. but thats okay, I dont think there is anything that is absolutely best in the world, no matter what you are talking about. so, yeah, lets stick to best as a subjective category.


so, what you think is the under $1000 bike that comes with the "best" frame? and I am talking trail riding with no big jumps or drops.

thanks again. I appreciate your input.
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Old 11-25-05, 03:01 PM   #9
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I'm out. It's been a long time since I owned a mountain bike that cost under $1k new, and now that I'm in Australia, I can't make comparisons. What's a Giant Alias cost in the US?
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Old 11-25-05, 03:50 PM   #10
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1g in what currency? 1g CAD doesn't get you much, my friend got a RM Fusion for just under 1g after taxes...
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Old 11-25-05, 09:31 PM   #11
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clarification: US Dollars 1000.00
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Old 11-25-05, 09:33 PM   #12
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Here is a steel frame bike for $1000


http://www.marinbikes.com/bicycles_2...dge_grade.html
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Old 11-26-05, 07:15 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sherpaPeak
weight is not a major consideration for me. I dont race and like it tough it out if it feels heavy. This bike should be for trail riding, no major jumps or drops and not for light weight XC either. for the frame my order of priority would be:

1. strenth
2. durability
3. performance
4. construction (butted, heattreated, gussets, reinforcement etc.)
5. geomatry

is that little more clear? please let me know. Thanks a lot.
Are you sure you listed your priorities correctly? It seems like geometry should always be number one on the list. What is the use of having a great frame if it doesn't fit?
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Old 11-26-05, 10:40 AM   #14
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<a href="http://www.konaworld.com/shopping_cart/FrontEnd/Products/product_detail.aspx?productid=360&parentid=253">Kona Hoss</a>

I've got an '05. It's built like a tank, but not too heavy. Ignore the fact that it's marketed at the more 'robustly built' rider. I'm not overweight, I just wanted a bike that was built to last. Mines taken a couple of hits from cars (one severe enough to put me in ER) during my daily commute into Central London, and has suffered no damage beyond a few scratches. And the scratches make it look even cooler IMHO.

I've upgraded my gears to SRAM X-9 rear and SRAM X-Gen front, but only because I fancied a change. The stock Shimano Deore stuff is way good enough for most things. The Dirt Jam fork gets criticised by some people, maybe rightly, because it's a little soft, but I don't mind it too much. That is, I'm not bothered enough by it to want to change it.
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Old 11-27-05, 12:21 PM   #15
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On a related topic, what is the difference in weight between the heaviest frames and lightest frames under $1000, excluding the < $200 bikes?

I recently bought a Cannondale F300 and while it's beautifully made and feels great when riding, I don't think the frame is very light. That may because of the cheapo fork (Manitou Six) and heavy components, but when I tap the middle of the down and top tubes with my finger, it doesn't sound very thin but instead sounds very solid, as if the tubes weren't butted. On the other hand, it'll probably last forever.
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Old 11-28-05, 09:38 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LowCel
Are you sure you listed your priorities correctly? It seems like geometry should always be number one on the list. What is the use of having a great frame if it doesn't fit?
Great point!!! for me, a person with limited knowledge, the hardtail geometry of all the major MTB manufacturer looks awefully close. I checked Specialized, GT, K2, Fisher and Trek websites and it seems like they are pretty much settled on the 71 and 73 formula or very close to that. now from the basic math, I think when you have those two angles and get the seat tube length (which is determined by the frame size), all the other measurements are pretty close. Now, one thing that makes the difference (IMHO) is that how they measure the different tubes and crucial features, like the top tube length and stand over height.

So, to address your point, Yes I put geometry as a low priority because I did not feel that there are much differences amongst the options I was looking at. Any thoughts, or directions in this regard.

thanks for your inputs.
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Old 11-28-05, 10:02 AM   #17
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Keep in mind that seat tube and top tube lengths are measured differently by different manufacturer's. Chain stay length is also something to take into consideration. That will make a difference in the stability of the bike and the way it climbs and descends. Bottom bracket height is also something to consider.

Granted the two angles you mentioned are important, and those along with the top tube length are generally the most important. They still won't tell you how well a bike is going to fit.

Oh, and "awfully close" may be close, but it only takes a couple of millimeters to make a big difference in fit.
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Old 11-28-05, 10:25 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LowCel
Keep in mind that seat tube and top tube lengths are measured differently by different manufacturer's. Chain stay length is also something to take into consideration. That will make a difference in the stability of the bike and the way it climbs and descends. Bottom bracket height is also something to consider.

Granted the two angles you mentioned are important, and those along with the top tube length are generally the most important. They still won't tell you how well a bike is going to fit.

Oh, and "awfully close" may be close, but it only takes a couple of millimeters to make a big difference in fit.
Okay LowCel, I think this is the time for me to come clean. I have recently bought a K2 zed 4.0. while riding the bike feels great. its light and came with a great set of componentry (http://www.k2bikes.com/products/bikedetails.asp?ID=6). the only thing that is playing in the back of my mind is - is the frame strong enough? I ride trails with pretty heavy backpack (around 30lbs). no long distance, but rockey trails. I got this bike to ride across PA and NY next summer and VT next Fall.

I also tried a Rockhopper '05 of my friend. its a base model and does not come with disk brakes. but, it seems like the rockhopper frame is stronger, am i right? i associate weight with strength? is that a correct assumption?

now, my friend told me that he would be willing to swap the bikes if I would like to, I get the rockhopper and he gets the zed 4.0, they have almost the same amount of milage on them. the reason I am considering this is because I bought the zed for under $500 (MSRP $819) and he bought the rockhopper for around $500. I have some bias towards Specialized (based on my readings and the looks of rockhopper). but my questions are:

1. is the rockhopper frame significantly better than the Zed 4.0 frame?
2. which one is a better (in terms of strength and durability) trail bike?
3. I am 5'10" and the zed 4.0 is a 17" and the rockhopper is 19". the zed has a comperatively smaller top tube (22.2") which I adjusted with a longer stem (120mm) and seat adjustment. they both feels fine on the road (i did not get a chance to take them on real trails). Do you think the Rockhopper 19" would be okay for me on the trails or single tracks? will the adjustment in the Zed (longer stem and seatpost) make handling sloppy on the trails).

I would really appreciate your input. I found your post very educative and effective learing tools.

thanks a lot.
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Old 11-28-05, 11:47 AM   #19
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If you swap bikes is your friend the original owner? If so would he be willing to say that he still owns the bike if you would need warranty work later on?

Also, I am the same height as you (5' 10"). I used to ride a Specialized S-Works hardtail. I rode a 17". The 19" Specialized was too large for me when I test rode one. It had me too stretched out which resulted in a sore back, too much weight on my hands and a stiff neck.

Your results may vary.
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Old 11-28-05, 11:49 AM   #20
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By the way, congrats on the new bike. Personally, I like K2 bike's and don't see anything wrong with them. Unless you are going to get into jumping or doing some rather large drops I don't think you will have any problem with the K2.
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Old 11-28-05, 01:03 PM   #21
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Thanks LowCel,
yet another encouraging response. I appreciate it. I think I am going to stick to my K2. if its good for you its good for me. I am not going to do jumps and drops. Anyway, we will probably take the bikes out tonight to a local trail. lets see what happens. will keep you posted. best regards.
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Old 11-28-05, 01:53 PM   #22
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Enjoy your ride!
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