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  1. #1
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    1st real bike need help?

    Hello all,

    I come from a Motocross background but have been out for about 3 years and now want to try my hand at mountain biking. I currently have a magna peice of junk from wal-mart and I just broke the sprocket doing my first trail ride. My wife set my budget for me and I have to stick around $400. I originally wanted full suspension but I dont want to pay for it so I guess I'll go hardtail. i want a bike that I can ride around our subdivison with my wife then hit the trails(jumps, downhill, general) on the weekend and maybe race it on down the road later in life. What sugesstions can you give me? My LBS carries Trek, Fisher, Lemond but I have not vistited them yet(will next week).

    The LBS told me that I need to step up my budget to get a decent bike(called them)! Is that just a sales pitch because I cant. Or should I stick with another wal-mart bike! And please dont flame me on this but other than obvious quality what is the real difference between a LBS bike and department store bikes?

    Do people even race hardtails? So I guess in short what is a good all around entry level bike for $400 or less?

    Thanks alot, I know i have a lot of research to do before I buy but with all the info I figure you guys can give me a good push in the right direction.

    Again thanks in advanced!

  2. #2
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    Well I think I will inquire at the LBS about the Trek: 3900, 3700, and the 820. And also the GF Advanced and Tarpon. What do you all think about these as far as what i want to do? And please disregard my racing a hardtail question, I realize it was dumb haha!!

  3. #3
    BAM! theextremist04's Avatar
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    I might say go used- if you do your research you can get crazy good deals used. For example, I just got a very-high end barely used 26lb. XC bike for $275 off craigslist.

  4. #4
    Lost in the Black Hills mx_599's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by theextremist04 View Post
    I might say go used- if you do your research you can get crazy good deals used. For example, I just got a very-high end barely used 26lb. XC bike for $275 off craigslist.
    +1

  5. #5
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    really a used bike!! Hmm, I can check but I live in a small town so finding something good will be hard. I will look around though and go to the LBS. Any more thoughts?

  6. #6
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    If you don't want to go used, you could always check out the Ironhorse Warrior 3.6, The Diamondback Responce Sport, Or the GT Avalanche. I bought the Ironhorse last year for $400 dollars, and I have done some reasonably seerious riding over the last season and the only thing that has gone wrong was the rear derailler broke off, (Very common and minor problem, cost me like $2 bucks to fix.) All of the previously listed bikes are carried at GI Joes, I advise just going down to there store and checking out what they have. If you don't have a Joes in your area, I would go to Dick's/ Sports Authority. Obviously thes are not going to be top of the line bikes, but they are far from Wal-mart quality, and will at least get you into the sport, just like it got me.

  7. #7
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    Well I was trying to stick with local so I can be fitted to a bike but all the sell is the ones I listed above. Nobody has anything good about those listed above? Why in the sticky it says all noobs should start on a Hardtail?

    Well dicks has a good looking mongoose but its FS which is what I want and in my price range but I heard FS under a grand is junk. True or un-true. I just want a bike to hit the trails that can eventually handle some rough stuff and joince the local race circuit when I get comfortable and yet have some quality. What do you think about this bike for what I want. Like I said I dont want top line just a good reliable fun bike. http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/pr...ductId=2057162
    This bike has a 18" frame and I am 170lbs at 5'-10" and 1/2. Too small??

  8. #8
    Senior Member Bosock's Avatar
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    Go with the gary fisher marlin or piranha...which ever is in your price range. Just recently priced out for my wife...here budget was 700...Fisher decent components (equal to $900 specalized), hydralic brakes, decent coil shocks and the GII geometry. Now that bike was priced at like 675...a little high for what you mentioned...but you probably could get marlin equipped as well as higher priced bikes. Fisher doesnt have bad entry lvl bikes for the price.
    2012 Specialized SL3 S-Works Roubaix
    2011 Specialized SL3 S-Works Tarmac
    2011 Scott CR1 Comp
    2011 Trek/Fisher Paragon 29er Hardtail
    2010 Stumpjumper Elite
    2012 Bianchi Infinito (Wifes)
    2007 Stumpjumper Elite (wifes)

  9. #9
    M_S
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    Isn't motocross expensive? I understand being on a budget as I don't have much cash myself, but 400 dollars really isn't going to get you very much bike. Your bike shop isn't BSing you, it's the truth. Also, coming from a motocross background, your skills and desire to do more technical riding may very quickly surpass the abilities of an entry level bike. I don't mean to be harsh, just realistic.

    Buy from your bike shop, establish a good relationship with them, and when time and funds allow, you'll probably upgrade if you stick with the sport.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S View Post
    Isn't motocross expensive? I understand being on a budget as I don't have much cash myself, but 400 dollars really isn't going to get you very much bike. Your bike shop isn't BSing you, it's the truth. Also, coming from a motocross background, your skills and desire to do more technical riding may very quickly surpass the abilities of an entry level bike. I don't mean to be harsh, just realistic.

    Buy from your bike shop, establish a good relationship with them, and when time and funds allow, you'll probably upgrade if you stick with the sport.
    Yes Moto-X is expensive for both initial invest, maintenance, upgrades, and race fees. However lets compare apples to apples, we are talking about a mountian bike. Sure there are mountain bikes up in the thousands but that is not what I need or want. I am just starting to mountain bike and where I live there is nothing really big,technical or any real fast downhills with drops. Just more or less trails with speed and the occasional jump or stump to go over. $400 was set not because it was all I can afford, it was set so I dont get stupid and spend money on something that might not get used as much as it should. Not to mention my other expensive hobbies I do(saltwater aquarium, R/C aircraft, Guns, my truck). I am not trying to sound like a jerk but I asked specific questions that have yet to be answered. I asked about certain models at my LBS and the price I'm willing to pay and all I get from everyone is bikes that are more than I am willing to spend. I do appreciate all the help from everyone and again I do not want to sound like a jerk and to the first few post I am also looking for used. I am open to many things but I have a $$$ limit that I am going to stick to.

  11. #11
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    Your questions are answered right now. $400 doesn't buy that whippy of a bike. It's okay for mild entry level riding around. Full suspension under a grand are really junk. Under $500 I'd run away. Buying used is a smart bet for folks on a budget. Sometimes people with more money than most purchase a good bike and then decide to not ride. They sell for much less then what they paid.
    I get the impression you want to hear it's okay to buy a "full suspension" for $400. Well it is if you don't really want to venture off the pavement. If you want to ride the dirt with any regularity it's not okay. It won't last long. $400 bikes are are pretty much the same. Fit will be your main difference. If you begin to ride seriously you wil quickly outgrow a $400 bike. Sell a gun or a fish, sell off some extra shiny chrome parts off the truck. Or just go ride some entry level bikes until you find one that fits the best.

  12. #12
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    Well I found a used Diamond Back FS. They guy knows nothing about it and neither do I. So I will get it(he gonna let me borrow it for a few days) take some pic and give the serial and model number to you all and let me know what you think. He told me to make a offer so that too is where I will need help. But I am going out of town in a few mins. and will be back saturday. So when I get back I'll let you all know. Thanks!!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fable View Post
    Your questions are answered right now. $400 doesn't buy that whippy of a bike. It's okay for mild entry level riding around. Full suspension under a grand are really junk. Under $500 I'd run away. Buying used is a smart bet for folks on a budget. Sometimes people with more money than most purchase a good bike and then decide to not ride. They sell for much less then what they paid.
    I get the impression you want to hear it's okay to buy a "full suspension" for $400. Well it is if you don't really want to venture off the pavement. If you want to ride the dirt with any regularity it's not okay. It won't last long. $400 bikes are are pretty much the same. Fit will be your main difference. If you begin to ride seriously you wil quickly outgrow a $400 bike. Sell a gun or a fish, sell off some extra shiny chrome parts off the truck. Or just go ride some entry level bikes until you find one that fits the best.
    No I don't want to hear that buying a $400 FS bike is okay at all. I just want a bike that can fit my needs. My neighbor has the Diamond Back and he is letting me ride it for as long as I want. It is a DB coil ex 06 model. After research I found that this bike is really just one notch above department store brands. So I took it out to the trails today. Now I have never ridden a FS bike before and what a difference this bike is over my hardtail wal-mart bike. I might buy it for cheap since he dont need it and get conditioned for mountain biking then make my big purchase. Just because I grew up moto-x means nothing. I cant keep speed for nothing without wanting to die! So a good bike for now will probably wait till I can actually carry myself decent in trails. However tomorrow I am going to the Bike shop to test ride some hardtails and see what I really like.

  14. #14
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    take a look at this.

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ne_600HT07.htm

    I had a $500 budget and ended up with the 700ht. I think you'll be dissapointed in the suspension after riding motorcross, but it's a decent bike. At first i was comparing the yz 125 i used to own to the bike the realized they are made for different purposes. Look at the components listed then compare them to the other bikes you've been looking at. Some of the other internet brands like ironhorse can save you lots of money too. You rode motorcross so i'm assuming you are capable of basic maintenance and wouldn't need a LBS to work on your bike for you.

    For $400 i'd take a look at the 600ht or buy used.

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