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Old 12-27-05, 11:03 AM   #1
allenwr1505
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I need help choosing a bike - I'm a novice

I'm a novice when it comes to bikes, and need to buy a mountain bike that will last a couple years of constant riding. I'll be using it on the road, on trails, and in snow. My budget is $300 to $350. So far, I've been looking at bikes on ebay, and I've been considering buying a Trek 4500 or a 2000 Trek 6500. I could probably get the 4500 for around $250 and the 6500 for about $350. I'm not really sure which bike I should buy or if I should buy a completely different bike. I've heard that the Trek 6500 is a really good bike, but the one I'm looking at is also five years old. Does that make much of a difference? I only have a week to purchase a bike, so what bike do you guys recommend?
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Old 12-27-05, 12:20 PM   #2
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I think the typical recommendation is to go down to your local bike shop and try out as many different bikes as you can. From there, go with what feels comfortable and fits your budget. If you're unfamiliar with the bikes you are looking at, the ebay route may not be the best way to find a bike that fits you.
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Old 12-27-05, 12:26 PM   #3
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Personally I wouldn't buy a five year old bike without seeing it in person and test riding it. It's hard to tell what the bike has been put through. It could have been used for five years of racing or it could have been ridden down the street a couple of times. Without seeing it in person you who knows what you could end up with.

junkyard gave you the best answer. Get to as many local shops as you can and test ride some bikes.
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Old 12-27-05, 12:28 PM   #4
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Have fun reading The "around" $500 MTB thread.
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Old 12-27-05, 12:45 PM   #5
EJ123
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Old 12-27-05, 03:38 PM   #6
bruiser2
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Damn, you beat me to it..... Just so this isn't a completely pointless post check out the Specialized Hardrock.
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Old 12-29-05, 03:48 PM   #7
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I would recommend a Speciallized Rockhopper. They are usually in that price range, and they are a pretty good bike. My reason for this recommendation is that you have a more broad variety of riding styles to chose from. If XC is your thing, the Rockhopper is reliable and basic...no extremely difficult parts to work on. But if FR is your thing (like me) the Rockhopper also has a pretty strong frame. I have done some intense urban and parkriding on a Rockhopper (15" frame) and never damaged anything on the bike. So I guess my point is that by starting out on a Rockhopper or similar bike, you will have the ability to see where riding can take you, and what your style is.
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