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Old 04-29-06, 06:39 PM   #1
legalize
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Completely Uneducated with Mountain Bike brands and options - Please help!

I like biking but I haven't had one for years. I am looking for a decent mountain bike that will cost no more than $500.

Ideally it would have at least front shocks, and maybe a rear shock as well
It would also ideally have disc breaks but I don't know if I will be able to for $500 or less

Can you tell me if I can do this, or not? Also can you introduce me to the best kind of brand for this kind of money?

I have absolutly no idea where to start looking. Any advice would help a lot. Thank you
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Old 04-29-06, 06:50 PM   #2
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I'm no expert but any full suspension bike at that price is gonna be just a toy. Check out hardtails like the Trek 4500, Specialized Hardrock, Marin Bobcat Trail, or Kona Fire Mountain. They should all be right around your price range.
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Old 04-29-06, 07:05 PM   #3
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you are best off looking for a used bike

better stuff for the dollar. ask around at bike shops
for what they have in teh used selection. check 5 shops at least
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Old 04-29-06, 08:05 PM   #4
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Ideally I want to buy a new bike. At the VERY least it needs to have front suspension. I should be able to get a good front suspension bike for $500, shouldn't I? I just want the gears to be reliable and everything else to work and not break.

If I could get front suspension AND disc breaks that would be great.

There's gotta be SOMETHING good for $500...I just have no idea what brand is good both in quality and for my situation. Thanks.

Also can someone explain the bike measurements? Are there tire measurements AND frame measurements, in inches? Or does the frame measurement include the tire measurements?

I'm not doing any crazy hardcore biking here, I am just an ameteur looking for a sturdy bike that I can take on rough terrain and have fun/excercize with
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Old 04-29-06, 08:26 PM   #5
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Disc brakes at that price are going to be terrible. Get something with V brakes, they work better than cheap discs.

Don't be over expectant of the bike either, there will be things that need replacement. Mountain biking isn't a cheap sport.
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Old 04-29-06, 08:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason222
Mountain biking isn't a cheap sport.
truth.

Besides, why spend more money than you really need to if you decide you don't like the sport after all? $450 got me a trek 4500 four years ago and it's still chuggin along. Start getting yourself into bigger and better things when you have a lot of time put in and when you are sure you're going to keep at it.
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Old 04-29-06, 08:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by legalize
Ideally I want to buy a new bike. At the VERY least it needs to have front suspension. I should be able to get a good front suspension bike for $500, shouldn't I? I just want the gears to be reliable and everything else to work and not break.
You can get a good hardtail for $500 (US) new (or a crappy full suspension, but let's ignore that option).

Quote:
Originally Posted by legalize
There's gotta be SOMETHING good for $500...I just have no idea what brand is good both in quality and for my situation. Thanks.
What brands do your local bike shops (real ones, that is) offer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by legalize
Also can someone explain the bike measurements? Are there tire measurements AND frame measurements, in inches? Or does the frame measurement include the tire measurements?
The standard mountain bike rim size is 26 inches (29 inch rims are the big -- heh -- alternative, 24 and 20 inch rims are less common options). The generally quoted size of a frame is based on some measurement of the seat tube. The top tube measurement is very important also, but less often quoted.
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Old 04-29-06, 08:42 PM   #8
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For sure, you need to check around. Look at used bikes and last year's model bikes. For maybe around 6 or 7 hundred dollars you could get a decent new bike w/disc brakes. I got a 2005 Giant STP 1 for 500 bucks, MSRP 1000, at my LBS. Just make sure to deal hunt...
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Old 04-29-06, 08:57 PM   #9
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Bike brands

Go to mtb.com for reviews. Mountain Bike Action magazine March 06 issuse has some great tips. I just bought a Mongoose Trax Elite but if I had the magazine reviews I would have made a different choice, Jamis, Giant or Trek. RB
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Old 04-30-06, 05:49 AM   #10
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I'm not sure what bikes my lbs offers. They are decent bike stores so I would think they have some popular stuff. I need to go look today or tomorrow. Do bike stores generally sell used bikes, as well? That'd be cool.

I guess it is looking like I'll be getting a bike without disc breaks or suspension? Damn. Bikes are so freakin' expensive, but oh well....!

I'm 6 feet 2 inches - any recomendation on the tire size and/or bike size?
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Old 04-30-06, 06:25 AM   #11
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Guys is this a bad or good deal?

http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/155518105.html
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Old 04-30-06, 06:27 AM   #12
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And how bout this one?
http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/155901322.html

Just trying to get a feel of what is a good deal/bad deal and why.

Thanks so much for the help in adavnce
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Old 04-30-06, 06:34 AM   #13
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These are some brands at a local store - can you help me narrow down which brand to look at?

Specialized KHS
Felt Free Agent
Redline Torker
Lowrider

Other Item Brands:
Serfas Louis Garneau
Yakima Shimano
Sram Hayes
Avid Vittoria
Continental Cateye
Giro Bell
Blackburn Fizik
Masterlock
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Old 04-30-06, 07:31 AM   #14
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$500

For $500 your asking for a lot in a new MB. Go for a good used MB and your $500 will go a lot further. Make sure it's a brand name and is less than 5 years old. However, many people buy MB and never use them, so something older is OK, but you must know your bikes to assure a good buy. GOOD LUCK. Remember there are two types of bikers. Those that have fallen and those that will.
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Old 04-30-06, 08:28 AM   #15
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Legalize, at 6'2" your going to need at least a 20 inch frame, and most likely a bit more, so keep that in mind while your shopping. The best thing to do, is visit your lbs and have them size you up. Tell them what kind of riding your interested in and the money your willing to fork over. They can answer your questions and give you some idea to what's out there. I spent about 900 dollars on my mb hobbie recently and I don't regret the purchase in the least. I would recommend buying all the bike you can afford because in the long run, quality components are going to hold up much longer and be more dependable. Just make sure that this style of riding is something your going to do, before you spend the money. Nothing worse than shelling out big bucks to just watch it sit in the corner.

If you go the lbs route, they usually have last years models sitting around, so keep that in mind. It can save you some money and buying from a lbs will give you some better warranty protection and servicing options.

Good luck...
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Old 04-30-06, 08:36 AM   #16
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Quote:
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Legalize, at 6'2" your going to need at least a 20 inch frame, and most likely a bit more, so keep that in mind while your shopping.
Ugh, no. I wouldn't go above 19" if I were him.

Check out the Specialized hardrocks and Rockhoppers.
http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkM...sid=06Hardrock
http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkM...d=06Rockhopper


Trek makes a lot of nice hardtails too.
http://www2.trekbikes.com/bikes/bike...d=1022600&f=19
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Old 04-30-06, 08:42 AM   #17
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Yeah that Hardrock from craigslist is worth $710 but i wouldnt go for it. I like the XC Rockhopper i would ask for other opinions on that too. Also as JAson222 said the hardrock is good i have one the rockhoppers look very nice and my friend has a trek bruiser 2 which is nice. Good luck finding a good bike!
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Old 04-30-06, 10:33 AM   #18
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Craigs List is a really good resource for used bikes but you've got to know what you're looking at what the bike is worth. Be patient and start checking out web sites Specialized, Trek, Giant etc. and the models they offer. Look at the componants to get a good feel on what your money will buy. My LBS will buy bulk on 1 or 2 models and blow them out so check your LBS to see if they have any specials.

Just do a lot of research to narrow your focus then you can ask more spacific questions.
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Old 04-30-06, 11:41 AM   #19
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The person told me that this one (http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/155901322.html) is in excellent condition and nothing wrong with it which I would hope to be true. Assuming it is a 19" bike, I would consider taking it. Do you think that's a good idea? Keep in mind I'm going to be looking around more but I would like to consider this one seriously if it would be a good idea....hm
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Old 04-30-06, 11:54 AM   #20
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You can't go by what someone online tells you about bike size completely. You really need to go somewhere to have them fit you for the first one I think. Some makes will fill better at a different size than others and it depends a lot on your inseam and arm length. I'd suggest at least going to the LBS and riding a couple of comparable bikes to ones you're looking at so you have an idea of what's a good fit.
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Old 04-30-06, 12:08 PM   #21
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She said it's an XL and she's 6ft tall so I figure it's close enough
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Old 04-30-06, 12:37 PM   #22
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for $500, I think a base Rockhopper would do you good
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Old 04-30-06, 12:59 PM   #23
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legalize, you're from boston? i am too.

which bike shop are you looking at?

for 500 dollars, you can totally get a good bike with front suspension, like the aforementioned hardrock or rockhopper.

if you really want disc brakes, you can always purchase them later. i mean, what kind of riding are you going to be doing? i'm sure regular rim brakes will be fine for the time being, considering you haven't biked in a while. maybe in a few months, you can upgrade to disc brakes, which would cost about 120 dollars for front and rear with 6 inch rotors.

anyway, some bike stores i recommend if you're in boston:

landry's on commonwealth ave
international bike store on brighton ave
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Old 04-30-06, 01:25 PM   #24
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I went to landrys in Danvers and they didn't even walk up to me to offer help so that pissed me off I took a look around however and although I didn't bother asking for help I got a good impression of what is available.

The rock hopper on craigslist for $500 is about 1000 or 1200 in the store! That is so freakin ridiculous to me.

I really am leaning towards a used bike. I think it's where I'll get the most for my money.

I'm from the North shore, so boston is kinda far away especially w/ these gas prices

Last edited by legalize; 04-30-06 at 01:46 PM.
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Old 04-30-06, 02:04 PM   #25
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Hold on there hard charger! The MSRP was $1190 in 2003. If a bike store happens to have this bike they are not going to sell it at this price. Bikes are just like anything else in that they depreciate over time.
http://www.mtbr.com/reviews/2002_Ful...ct_85563.shtml

I think $500 is still too much.
However as I mentioned earlier, I think you being too hasty in buying a bike that your not to sure what to buy. There's always so many bikes on craig list and deals will always pop up. You need to grasp the language of components and the models that Mfg's offer. This takes research, some time and a little patience.

There's always so many bikes on Craigs
http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/156035211.html

http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/155419287.html

http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/155315117.html

http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/154831331.html

http://boston.craigslist.org/bik/154446498.html
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