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Old 08-04-08, 09:09 AM   #1
Chapman
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Suggestions for hardtail around $1000?

I'm new to mountain biking so I don't know too much about components, brands, or which bikes have the best component packages. I'd really appreciate it if some one could suggest some hardtail models for around $1000. I was in REI the other day and they had a Cannondale Caffeine 4 for $999 that seemed pretty good. Any opinions on this bike in particular?

Thanks,
Chapman
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Old 08-04-08, 09:25 AM   #2
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The fork is a piece. The Dart is low end Rockshox. Also do you really want a 29er? Or did this bike just catch your eye? Also what kind of riding are you looking into doing? Because that factors quite a bit into the bike you want.

Last edited by jcook1989; 08-04-08 at 09:34 AM.
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Old 08-04-08, 09:43 AM   #3
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The bike just caught my eye. The sales girl also gave me a pretty good pitch. She said since I'm 6'4, 220 the 29s would be beneficial.

It would mostly be for forest service roads and trails in North Georgia.
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Old 08-04-08, 09:59 AM   #4
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Jamis Dakota

Good components. Better fork. Similar cost.
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Old 08-04-08, 10:36 AM   #5
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Chapman, I was in your exact same position. And I bought the caffeine4 29er. I got 50$ knocked off the 999 pricetag and didnt have to pay tax. Kindve sweetened the deal for me. Im also 6'4 220 lbs. I upgraded from a trek 4300. The type of riding I do would most likely be classified as XC. Single track with alot of quick steep up and down technical stuff with a couple of 1-3 foot drops tossed in. Hes propably right about the fork but I cant offer any advice because I upgraded from one even worse so it feels awesome to me. I can climb things on the 29er that had me putting a foot down on my old 26.

I was also hoping to be educated a little bit, aside from weight what qualities of a fork make it superior? Ive read the technical specs but I was hoping to get more of a laymans explantion from people whove experienced the differences.
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Old 08-04-08, 11:39 AM   #6
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Gary Fisher Cobia. $1039 retail, but you should be able to find one under $1k. It has almost the same specs as the cannondale. Nicer fork (tora) but lower end brakes. But the shimano hydros on the cannondale aren't that great anyways. Obviously pick the one that feels best though.
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Old 08-04-08, 11:41 AM   #7
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not sure how much they cost now but how about a stumpjumper?
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Old 08-04-08, 01:58 PM   #8
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I was also hoping to be educated a little bit, aside from weight what qualities of a fork make it superior? Ive read the technical specs but I was hoping to get more of a laymans explantion from people whove experienced the differences.
The big thing that makes some forks better is adjustability and strength.

The Tora is is stronger and has more adjustability then the Dart. Mainly U-turn which lets you adjust the travel and the ability to adjust the air preload(how stiff it is). The Dart is decent for light riding but the Tora is a just a better fork and it will outlast and outperform the Dart.

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Old 08-04-08, 02:01 PM   #9
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Hmm, I am also looking for the same type bicycle. If you are willing to buy used, you can find a very nice hardtail for 1/2 off retail and in good shape. I am looking to pick up a used scott scale 30 for $1,500.
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Old 08-04-08, 06:00 PM   #10
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North GA eh?
Any good trail up you way. Im down here in central GA
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Old 08-04-08, 06:10 PM   #11
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Gary Fisher Cobia. $1039 retail, but you should be able to find one under $1k. It has almost the same specs as the cannondale. Nicer fork (tora) but lower end brakes. But the shimano hydros on the cannondale aren't that great anyways. Obviously pick the one that feels best though.
That or a Gary Fisher "Hoo Koo E Koo" if he chooses to go with a 26er. Should be able to get an '08 for around a $1000 since the '09s are coming out now.
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Old 08-04-08, 08:01 PM   #12
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I think I might pick up a 08 GF ferrous for around $1200.
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Old 08-05-08, 08:32 AM   #13
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Check out a higher end Specialized Rockhopper, like the pro. They are equipped with the Tora. Im very pleased with mine. Im from Georgia but currently reside in South Korea, and it works for me here, and the mountains are similar if not a little worse here.
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Old 08-05-08, 12:56 PM   #14
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I was in the same boat back in May, and I got a Kona Caldera. So far it seems like a great bike for an entry level rider (ie, me). $950 gets you a Tora 302 fork, an XT Shadow RD, and Hayes Stroker Trail hydraulic brakes. It's a 26" bike, which I found gets you more for your money. I don't know why a couple extra pounds means you need a 29er, seems like big guys have been riding 26" wheels for a while.

Although if you're OK buying a bike unseen, that Jamis cited above is a sweet deal, though a little weak on the brakes it seems to me.
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Old 08-05-08, 04:40 PM   #15
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For the money one of the best hardtails out there is the Specialized Stumpjumper M4. Specialized is a great company that stands behind its warranties if something goes wrong. I think you might be able to find one now (towards the end of year) for around $1000 - 1200.
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Old 08-05-08, 04:53 PM   #16
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For the money one of the best hardtails out there is the Specialized Stumpjumper M4. Specialized is a great company that stands behind its warranties if something goes wrong. I think you might be able to find one now (towards the end of year) for around $1000 - 1200.
Uhh, The 08 Stumpy is aM5, the M4 frame is used on the Rockhopper, and the Rockhopper Pro Disc is the bike I'd try to pick up for $1000.
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Old 08-05-08, 05:35 PM   #17
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Uhh, The 08 Stumpy is aM5, the M4 frame is used on the Rockhopper, and the Rockhopper Pro Disc is the bike I'd try to pick up for $1000.
Geez I haven't been keeping up! I have an older Stumpjumer M4! My M4 is a 2004. I have a newer Santa Cruz which I ride most of the time but I still love the M4. Great climbing bike!

What is the price of the new M5? Have a clue?
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