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Old 07-02-06, 11:42 AM   #1
ungratefulninja
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Yet another bike recommendation thread

Background: I recently dug my 10 year-old GT Outpost (rigid fork, entry-level acera-x shimano components, grip shift) out of the garage. I haven't ridden in about 4 years. I considered upgrading, but have more or less decided just to buy something new. It'll mostly be ridden on paved trails to start, but I'd like to be prepared to do something more later.

There are several shops in my area, so I have access to quite a few brands. One shop sells Specialized, Trek, and Cannondale. The second shop sells mostly Gary Fisher. Another sells Marin, but mostly stocks just Kona. I visited another Giant retailer and got ignored, so I don't think I'll go back there. Most of the bikes I looked at were $500-800. I realize that most of those will work for me.

I've ridden a Kona Blast, a Specialized Rockhopper, and a Trek 6700. The Trek model I was actually comparing was a 4900, but they didn't have one my size in, I was just testing out the 6700. I've looked at the GF models, but not ridden any of them yet. I liked the Kona and the RH. The Kona did have a lower level of components. The guy at the shop seemed to like the Marzocchi MZ-3 shock. I'm mostly looking for feedback just because its hard to get a feel for the bikes on the pavement near the bike shop. I got to look at Rockhopper Comp that another customer ordered, but not ride. Would I appreciate the jump to the RH Comp Disc to jump to the Tora and the Avid Discs, over the regular RH?

The Specialized/Trek/Cannondale shop was also pushing the Cannondale, but I don't see them talked about much on here. Any particular reason? People not like the Headshok? I was a little leery because it just seems less upgradeable and more of a hassle, so I didn't bother riding one.
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Old 07-02-06, 11:54 AM   #2
Chone
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Cannondale's integrated and propietary designs are cool performance and looks wise... but indeed, its too much of a hassle replacing or upgrading, I wouldn't get a Canny for that reason alone, they are fine bikes but I can't see myself riding a headshox or lefty with peace on my mind but you know, that's just me, try a Cannondale yourself.

The Marzocchi MZ III is a poor fork, nothing special and I'd like the J3 on the base Rockhopper more because of lockout alone, jump to disc brakes and the Tora suspension is worth it and you are getting a better deal component for money with the Rockhopper Comp than with the Rockhopper base model. Konas are also amazing but their sub 1000$ hardtails all come with MZ3 forks, hydro brakes might even that out but BB5s are great anyways and very adjustable, between Kona and Specialized... I'd pick Specialized component wise and fit-wise (better said I picked specialized over kona ), but you really need to know if the Kona or Specialized fits better, otherwise components won't matter but if you are basing your choice on components alone... get the Rockhopper Comp.

As for the Trek 6700, its a great bike, very light, great components but its also more expensive and do keep in mind the Trek is a very XC oriented bike and if you are looking at more aggresive riding styles the Kona and Specialized will serve you better.
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Old 07-02-06, 01:23 PM   #3
Jason222
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I'd rather have the Mz-3 over the J3. I'll explain more later, I have to go.
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Old 07-02-06, 02:59 PM   #4
ungratefulninja
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On mtbr.com the MZ-3 has a 1.67/5 rating out of 3 reviews. The J3 has a 2.80/5 out of 5 reviews. So neither one appears to be really well liked.

The Tora 318 on the RH Comp and Comp Disc has gotten 3.92/5 with 12 reviews.

So in general the Tora would be much better fork, if the reviews are to be believed. I still plan on trying a GF or two. The comments I've read on the Genesis geometry seem to be fairly love/hate, so I'm going to see for myself. I'm 5' 10". It looks like unless you jump to the Cobia for about $1,000 to get the Tora you get the Manitou Axel Elite instead. Would the Manitou be preferrable to the J3 or MZ-3? I've tried reading up, but there's an equal amount of "this fork is great" and "this fork sucks." I'm not worrying too much about the other components, if need be I can just upgrade later.

If I compare the Tassajara Disc to the RH Comp Disc, the Tass has Hayes Sole XC hydraulic discs and the Manitou Axel Platinum instead of BB5s and the Tora.

Last edited by ungratefulninja; 07-02-06 at 03:18 PM.
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