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Old 01-23-08, 05:29 PM   #1
ProFail
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Differences in Two Bikes

Well- The time has come. My last bike at least, for a very, very long time). I've decided to get a middly-high-end end bike this time, in stead of the middle-ish stuff I have. I've decided on a Specialized Epic. I'm just not sure which one....

I'm trying to decide between the Expert Carbon and Marathon Aluminum. Which one would be the better choice? Both seem to have an XT group, but the Marathon has Magura Brakes. While they look pretty cool, I don't know how they compare to the Juicy Ultimates on the Expert. (At least, I think they're Ultimates. It says Seven Ultimate, which I can only assume since manufacturers call the Carbon Seven Carbon). The Marathon also has Carbon bars/seat-post, and I think better wheels and a lighter saddle. I don't know how the weights compare.

I like the idea of a carbon bike, since I've never owned anything outside of aluminum, but if the Marathon is lighter and the brakes are better....

NOTE- Braking power is a big deal to me. If the Maguras are lighter but weaker, well.... That could be a deal breaker.

Also, the bikes cost the same- $4400.
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Old 01-23-08, 05:53 PM   #2
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If they both cost the same, the aluminum bike will probably have better components, since most companies are charging more for the same bike with a carbon frame.
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Old 01-23-08, 06:40 PM   #3
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maguras are generally considered very high end brakes of comparable (if not more so) quality to juicys. If brake quality is a potential deal-breaker, i suggest you try out both bikes/sets of brakes
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Old 01-23-08, 06:53 PM   #4
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maguras are generally considered very high end brakes of comparable (if not more so) quality to juicys. If brake quality is a potential deal-breaker, i suggest you try out both bikes/sets of brakes
I have had two pairs of Marta's, one pair of regular, one pair SL. I now have a pair of Juicy 7's. There is no comparison between them, the Martas are better in every way.
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Old 01-24-08, 11:07 AM   #5
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I ride an aluminum Epic, and a carbon hardtail. The Epic could definately benefit from the ride quality properties of a carbon frame, as it's not one of the plushest riding full sussers. Weather it's worth any difference in components, is up to you.

Last edited by born2bahick; 01-24-08 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 01-24-08, 01:57 PM   #6
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The weight difference between the two is not enough to matter. I ride an Epic Expert and changed components to get it down to just under 24lbs. I think I would go for alum. with better components.
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Old 01-24-08, 03:23 PM   #7
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Kay.

Another thing I need to consider is an Orbea Alma. the guy at the Orbea shop said I can get the Alma under 21 (Versus the Marathon's 27) pounds w/o pedals for around $4.5k. Although the thought of a super light carbon bike is appealing, I need to consider the rough, rooty terrain that I ride on. I already have a FS AM bike, but I like all of my bikes to be functional. I don't want a top-end hardtail if it's slower then a mid-end FS.
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Old 01-24-08, 08:21 PM   #8
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Go carbon. Lighter and both bikes have great components.

One question: Why not go with something with a little more travel if you are going full suspension?
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Old 01-24-08, 09:08 PM   #9
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Go carbon. Lighter and both bikes have great components.

One question: Why not go with something with a little more travel if you are going full suspension?
Aren't the Epics the ones with those intense rear suspension systems? The floating drive train? Great for going fast, apparently - that might be why.

Since you guys are talking about shaving off tenths of a gram, that might be a serious reason why to get the floating suspension system .
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Old 01-25-08, 12:32 PM   #10
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I already have a FS AM bike, but I like all of my bikes to be functional. I don't want a top-end hardtail if it's slower then a mid-end FS.
And that's the rub! 21 lb hardtails are great for smooth singletrack, and showing off your weight weenie side. But I find in rock gardens and really rooty terrain, it takes all my energy to keep the bike underneath me. It's so light that it bounces around, like trying to ride a ping pong ball. I've found that for hardtails, I really like the 24lb area myself. JMO
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Old 01-26-08, 10:44 AM   #11
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Go for the carbon frame. Everything I have read, and or when talking with folks who own the carbon, they say that frame is substantially better. You can alway upgrade components, very expensive to upgrade frames.
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Old 01-26-08, 06:32 PM   #12
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One question: Why not go with something with a little more travel if you are going full suspension?
I already have a 5" travel FS bike. It weighs 30 pounds, soooooo.....

"And that's the rub! 21 lb hardtails are great for smooth singletrack, and showing off your weight weenie side. But I find in rock gardens and really rooty terrain, it takes all my energy to keep the bike underneath me. It's so light that it bounces around, like trying to ride a ping pong ball. I've found that for hardtails, I really like the 24lb area myself. JMO"

For 24 pounds, I think I could get the Alma 29'er. I hear a lot of good things about 29'ers, and that they're faster in a lot of ways. Would it be a good way to go for a 24 pound HT?


G'damn. I'm also a roadie, so I'm trying to decide between a road bike and a MTB*now. The more I think about what bike I want, the harder it is to choose. =(
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Old 01-26-08, 07:20 PM   #13
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Considering that you want to make it to cat 1 or cat 2 racing road bikes and were planning on dedicating most of your time to that goal it seems like the road bike might be the way to go. That is of course if that is still your goal.
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Old 01-26-08, 08:26 PM   #14
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Shoot, if you're gonna drop $4500, why not get a 2 grand hardtail and a 2 grand road bike. $2,000 goes a long way...
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Old 01-26-08, 08:55 PM   #15
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Shoot, if you're gonna drop $4500, why not get a 2 grand hardtail and a 2 grand road bike. $2,000 goes a long way...
Because I already have a $1,400 road bike. =/

I figure the increase of $600 will be negligible.

And LowCel, where did I say I want to be a Cat. 1/2 racer? I said I was a roadie, not a road racer, and I rarely race my MTB....
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Old 01-26-08, 09:12 PM   #16
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Go for a Titus Racer X 29er, its in the 24 lbs class, and has those larger wheels, and its in your price range.
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Old 01-27-08, 01:05 AM   #17
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Ive always been told stay away from carbon frames.
if you hit a tree or fall on a rock your frame can get pretty jacked up.
after all, carbon fiber is an interwoven cloth covered in resin.
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Old 01-27-08, 01:08 AM   #18
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Those carbon frames are tougher than they look.
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Old 01-27-08, 01:55 AM   #19
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Ive always been told stay away from carbon frames.
if you hit a tree or fall on a rock your frame can get pretty jacked up.
after all, carbon fiber is an interwoven cloth covered in resin.
You know, mods, we need to make a sticky dedicated to issues that have been beaten to death. Like this one.

Also covered:

- "Hardtails help you pick better lines"
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Old 01-27-08, 07:13 AM   #20
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Was only saying what ive heard from people around here.
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Old 01-27-08, 09:56 AM   #21
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Does that go for the sig too?
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Old 01-27-08, 10:16 AM   #22
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- "Hardtails help you pick better lines"
That's been debated.
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Old 01-27-08, 10:23 AM   #23
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And LowCel, where did I say I want to be a Cat. 1/2 racer? I said I was a roadie, not a road racer, and I rarely race my MTB....
I apologize, had you confused with another member.
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Old 01-27-08, 11:03 AM   #24
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I apologize, had you confused with another member.
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Old 01-27-08, 02:24 PM   #25
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Does that go for the sig too?
The signature is me.
I proudly support the troops when ever i can.
they gave me my freedom, and They will continue to do so.
Both my granddads served in ww2, my dads currently serving, he has 8 days untill he leaves for a 1 year tour in the middle east.
And in a few years i have plans to join as an officer.

SO Kindly, dont dog on my signature.
tired of all the BS people who run there mouths and wish the troops to die, but yet, it is the troops that give them the rights to talk like that.

I prove my case.
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