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  1. #1
    Cyclocrosser.
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    Newbie me: Hardtail

    What it is? I'm very new to the doings of rock eating. Me and the SO are going on a 5 day trip to Hot Springs, Arkansas to do some dirt chirping. I had an '03 Marin Bolinas Ridge; she had a walmart special steel tank. I fixed that. She now has an '04 Haro V3 and I purchased an '04 Marin Nail Trail. I see so many peeps with dual suspension bikes, I'm curious to know why. I've always felt more in control of my bike with the hardtail. I almost feel like a moron for purchasing the hardtail, though, but I know I shouldn't. I wanted the hardtail. I could've bought a thousand dollar dual suspension and then upgraded from there, but I wanted the top of the line Marin Hardtail Alloy. I'm not looking to take nasty 8 foot drops; maybe an occasional 3 or 4 footer. I am pretty confident that the bike can handle it, too. At least, I hope so. I've had no problems so far. I've hit curbs hard enough with the rear wheel to knock me into a different gear, but no damage. I need opinions.

  2. #2
    pluralis majestatis redfooj's Avatar
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    im a hardtail guy, also. they're just lighter, simpler, classic machines

    the real question is why anybody would venture to hot springs, ar to ride

    it's basically an old folk's community

  3. #3
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    nothing wrong there. At least in my eyes, FS is only for those who are doing downhill or jumps. I'll stick with my hardtails.

    Plus hardtails have less components that can fail...I'm a pessimist by nature, so having less stuff on the bike is a good thing....but I cannot live without my seattube water bottle mount.....oh how many days I bought slurpees downtown and rode all day with it in my vertical water bottle mount...(offtopic, but hey..it's SLURPEE!!!)

  4. #4
    damn straight
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    i just finished re building my marin hardtail frame that i just got back from warantee. i cracked the top tube doing a 2 foot wheelie drop but anyhow i'm more excited to take my hardtail out for it's first ride than i am taking out my new racer x 100. it's not that i like hardtails better but i love this particular bike it reminds me of a simpler time in my life. i have two new rides that haven't been trail tested yet.
    2004 Titus Racer X 100
    2004 Giant TCR 1 Composite
    2005 Moots Vamoots compact
    1986 Olmo San Remo Fixed

  5. #5
    ÖöÖöÖöÖöÖö Dannihilator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by catatonic
    nothing wrong there. At least in my eyes, FS is only for those who are doing downhill or jumps. I'll stick with my hardtails.
    Umm, you sure this is a valid statement? I DH, Jump off of stuff, ride trails with one bike, a hardtail.
    Strike like an eagle and sacrifice the dove.
    Words and Stuff.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Hey man, I ride a ridgid!

  7. #7
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KonaRider24
    Umm, you sure this is a valid statement? I DH, Jump off of stuff, ride trails with one bike, a hardtail.

    I didn't say a hardtail wasn't suitable for this...I jsut feel FS bikes are a bit overkill for anything outside of that range. There really is no contest though that the toughest bikes for DH and going big are FS. Given there are more speed friendly FS rigs out now (specialized with the Fox "Brain" comes to mind), but those are still outrageously expensive, so it's not something I think much about....now once the trickle-down tech allows me to get one for about $800, I might change my mind on FS.

  8. #8
    Cyclocrosser.
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    Someday I'll have a FS bike. In fact, if any of you are familier with Sun and Ski sports lay away program 'play now pay later' it's really easy to get into a bike like that. I figure once I get my two new bikes and new gear paid off (about 2 grand worth!) I'll go and get a FS.. Or maybe I'll spring for a road bike!

  9. #9
    Senior Member MudPie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phiber
    I need opinions.
    I used to ride a hardtail for about 5 years, and just bought a full suspension a couple of months ago. I don't do jumps or downhill. I'm more of an "aggressive XC" style rider, enjoying singletracks. Here's my experience with full suspension (compared to hard tail).

    1. Comfort. On long rides or bumpy terrain, my body doesn't get beat up. My arms, shoulders, and back feel much better. I'm 39 years old and I ain't getting any younger.

    2. Control. On single track decents (where control and maneuverability is more important than pure speed), I have much better control since the rear doesn't bounce around and the tires stay on the trail. Plus I am more inclined to go over obstacles, rather than steering around them.

    3. Climbing. Hardtails are more efficient climbers, but with a fs with "anti-bob" suspension or geometry, fs are pretty efficient. On climbs with a fs, I worry less about going around rocks and obstacles and maintain a straight line, powering over obstacles.

    4. Weight. FS are heavier than hardtails. However, I don't mind because of the comfort factor (see #1).

    Overall, I ride faster and more confident with the FS. I was the last of my ride buddies to get a FS, and would typically be last on single track decents or on extremely bumpy sections with the hardtail. However, with the FS, I have no problem keeping up or even being the first.

    Realize, my FS has hydraulic discs, my hardtail has V-brakes, so that also adds to the confidence factor.

    Bottom line: Get out, ride, and enjoy!

    FWIW:

    Hardtail = Schwinn Homegrown
    Full Suspension = Fisher Cake 2DLX.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Can I have one of each please!

  11. #11
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MudPie
    I used to ride a hardtail for about 5 years, and just bought a full suspension a couple of months ago. I don't do jumps or downhill. I'm more of an "aggressive XC" style rider, enjoying singletracks. Here's my experience with full suspension (compared to hard tail).

    1. Comfort. On long rides or bumpy terrain, my body doesn't get beat up. My arms, shoulders, and back feel much better. I'm 39 years old and I ain't getting any younger.

    2. Control. On single track decents (where control and maneuverability is more important than pure speed), I have much better control since the rear doesn't bounce around and the tires stay on the trail. Plus I am more inclined to go over obstacles, rather than steering around them.

    3. Climbing. Hardtails are more efficient climbers, but with a fs with "anti-bob" suspension or geometry, fs are pretty efficient. On climbs with a fs, I worry less about going around rocks and obstacles and maintain a straight line, powering over obstacles.

    4. Weight. FS are heavier than hardtails. However, I don't mind because of the comfort factor (see #1).

    Overall, I ride faster and more confident with the FS. I was the last of my ride buddies to get a FS, and would typically be last on single track decents or on extremely bumpy sections with the hardtail. However, with the FS, I have no problem keeping up or even being the first.

    Realize, my FS has hydraulic discs, my hardtail has V-brakes, so that also adds to the confidence factor.

    Bottom line: Get out, ride, and enjoy!

    FWIW:

    Hardtail = Schwinn Homegrown
    Full Suspension = Fisher Cake 2DLX.
    "2. Control. On single track decents (where control and maneuverability is more important than pure speed), I have much better control since the rear doesn't bounce around and the tires stay on the trail. Plus I am more inclined to go over obstacles, rather than steering around them."

    >>>well stated and the first point to my interest in fs. BUT, high speed cornering??? a non-suspension fork is wild.
    Not to dis, a Schwinn ,bout anything isn't high end. Nice maybe, not 'A-race'.

    I'm 39, jump ridgd frameworks, up to whatever I can survive. Meah.

    Also...what type of alloy is the MTB? Good $0000 steel and you don't need so much suspension..just skills.

    Man.>Jef.

  12. #12
    NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS! a2psyklnut's Avatar
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    Actually the Schwinn Homegrown is a pretty sweet frame!

    But yeah, I agree with most of the points listed above.

    Just buy one of both and ride according to your mood!

    Heck, buy a single speed too!

    L8R
    "Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW, What a Ride!" - unknown
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  13. #13
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by a2psyklnut
    Actually the Schwinn Homegrown is a pretty sweet frame!

    But yeah, I agree with most of the points listed above.

    Just buy one of both and ride according to your mood!

    Heck, buy a single speed too!

    L8R
    I love soo many bikes, I can afford 1 used A-class frame with used A parts or B class new.

    Some people like a build as manufacturer intended, some build bikes.

    The only bike I like is a frame with metal bits I alter to suit my terrain. A HT steel frameworks new is a serious cash suck. Ritchey prob $1000 US. for the frame only.

    A REAL HQ HT is a nice thing. I want a Fat Chance. Fat chance I'm gonna find one.

    Sigh...

    >jef.

    I feel so guilty spending more..I already have.

    Going to build kids bikes this summer.

  14. #14
    The Rabbi seely's Avatar
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    The Homegrown is generally considered to be one of the best hardtail XC frames ever made. As a matter of fact though, when trials on 26" bikes started becoming big the bikes everyone was using were 15" Homegrowns and GT Zaskars, because of their weight/strength (>3lbs frame, VERY strong). The Homegrowns were actually built by Azonic I'm told.

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