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Old 11-15-10, 11:03 AM   #1
HMF
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Can someone help me pick a bike?

I知 sure this forum gets about as many of these types of threads as the Road forum does, but I could really use some advice.

About me: I知 26 and I致e been road riding for about 2 years now and I知 really interested in getting into mountain biking. The last time I took a mountain bike into the mountains I was probably 13 years old and I road BMX style through elementary and middle school, but not that any of that counts anymore.

What I知 looking to do: I live in Austin and we have 鍍he Greenbelt where a lot of MTBers take their rigs. I知 sure there痴 more riding within driving distance, but I値l do a lot of riding in the Greenbelt. Some of the trails and paths can get pretty technical rocky climbs and descents, and rock gardens are pretty common. It's mostly all singletrack.

What I致e ridden so far: Pivot had a demo day yesterday I so I rode their full suspension 26ers and 29ers. I know a lot of people lament the squishy feeling and sapped efficiency of a full suspension bike, but I知 not going to be racing and I知 not even concerned with going super fast, but I知 all about handling and managing the rough stuff. I知 still torn between the sizing though. Riding the 29er first was an experience, those wheels are huge! I rode it for about 45 minutes and I wasn稚 into it at first, but towards the end I was able handle the wheel better and was impressed with the feel of it over large obstacles. Also, the high gear felt comparable to my road bike痴 high gear, which was impressive. After that I road a 26in full suspension, and right away I felt more in control and liked the snappier response, but when I came up against a rock garden I couldn稚 just sail over it the way the 29er would, and I one point I was laughing out loud at my bicep muscles practically flapping off the bone that was kind of uncomfortable actually. Anyway, I think 29er is the way to go. I think it would just take a little more time to get the handling skills down but the benefits would be worth it. As for component spec, both of them were really high end, but like I said I知 a beginner with no plans to race, so I doubt I壇 notice the difference between what I rode and something with lower spec that I could actually afford.

All in all, both were incredibly fun and made road riding seem as boring as a treadmill. I壇 like to get a mountain bike to change it up a bit every now and then.

So basically I have a general idea of what I want, but MTB is foreign territory for me. I read through the MTB FAQ sticky, but that was written like 6 years ago and I知 able to spend more than $500. And I致e searched the 擢S vs. HT threads and have come to the conclusion rider skill matters more. I saw a Trek Fuel EX 8 on sale for 2k and though that壇 be pretty flippin sweet, but then I thought, "well I could go 29er HT for less and use it to work on my skills, and maybe I don稚 really need that much bike anyway". I just want to have as much fun as I did yesterday without thinking 澱etter components would致e allowed me to stay clipped in, or kept me from crashing

I've looked at Trek, Specialized, and Fisher. I'd appreciate all input and recommendations about anything I've talked about and anything else I should consider.
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Old 11-15-10, 11:49 AM   #2
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If you want an entry price FS 26, take a look at the Giant Yukon FX. I can't speak for this year's model since mine is a 2009, but I think it is almost the same.
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Old 11-15-10, 12:46 PM   #3
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What's your budget? $2000? You can get a decent FS for $2000.

I have no 29er experience on account of I'm short and IMO no one's figured out how to put 29 inch wheels on a 14" frame without the geometry going to hell. That and I like little wheels. So I can't give a good opinion on 26 vs 29, other than I like 26. FS kicks the tail of HT for general trail riding though.

If you felt awesome on the 29er though, why not go for an FS 29er? For example, the GF HiFi Plus is $2300, Giant Anthem X 29er is $2350, and Specialized Camber Elite 29er is $2050 (Fisher and Giant have a Fox F series up front and Float in back, which are great forks/shocks, but may contribute to why they cost more). There are also the 650b and 69er options, but you'll find far less selection.
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Old 11-15-10, 01:01 PM   #4
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There are also the 650b and 69er options, but you'll find far less selection.
The Trek 69er is a wicked looking bike, I saw one at the lbs the of other day.
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Old 11-15-10, 08:24 PM   #5
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The Trek 69er is a wicked looking bike, I saw one at the lbs the of other day.

....but how does it ride?
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Old 11-15-10, 10:47 PM   #6
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....but how does it ride?
Who cares? No one sees you ride at the trail head..
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Old 11-15-10, 11:01 PM   #7
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Check out the Scott Scale 29er. Good components, great geometry, hotter than a 1972 Raquel Welch! Priced at a variety of levels for what you can afford.
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Old 11-17-10, 09:54 AM   #8
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Cannondale does not bake a full susponsion 29er at this point. They havesome hardtail 29ers that are superbe. My suggestion would be the Flash 29er. Thsi bike is $1799 MSRP and comes with a lefty. I have a lefty and honestly I don't want anything else.
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Old 11-17-10, 05:28 PM   #9
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Those are some really good options, and I've been visiting my LBS for some test rides.

When it comes to shocks, how much difference is there between, say, the Rock Shox Recon and Reba? I haven't been able to trail test either one, but that seems to be the dividing line between two price levels in every manufacturer.
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Old 11-17-10, 06:00 PM   #10
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No experience with a 29'er here as well. Looks a little funny to me with those big wheels. But I am only avg. height at 6' so I have no need for the 29'er. I heard they are maily for the tall riders and by that I assume 6'3" or taller.

But that is all subjective as well so really, pay me no attention!

As far as the fork is concerned..............there are dividing lines but never really heard too bad of either the Reba or Recon. Seems that they both have a following.
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Old 11-17-10, 07:03 PM   #11
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I like the Recon because the name sounds cooler. There are no obnoxious red-headed chicks with B-list sitcoms named 'Recon'.
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Old 11-18-10, 05:31 AM   #12
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I like the Recon because the name sounds cooler. There are no obnoxious red-headed chicks with B-list sitcoms named 'Recon'.
What is it with Reba??? I can't stand her and her acting is, well, not too good. Funny how if you have money already you can buy your way into anything!
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Old 11-18-10, 09:10 AM   #13
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What is it with Reba??? I can't stand her and her acting is, well, not too good. Funny how if you have money already you can buy your way into anything!
Well I hate most everything about her, but I gotta have some respect for whatever she did to get a RS fork named after her.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:42 AM   #14
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I heard they are maily for the tall riders and by that I assume 6'3" or taller.
29ers have nothing to do with how tall the rider is. It has everything to do with rolling resistance. the bigger the wheel, the easier it is to get over an object. I have very limited experience with 29er's (messing around with my brothers bike which is a 2010 Cannondale F5 29er). It is definatly different to ride and honestly, if I was buying today, I would consider one.


The bottom line is that you need to ride as many bikes as possable in your price range and get the one you are most confortable on. Just becuase I love Cannondale bikes and the way they feel does not mean you will too. The same go for all other brands.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:42 AM   #15
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Who cares? No one sees you ride at the trail head..
Why don't you drag your buddy Mr Law up here and do a little riding. I'll take you guys to Bennet Gap and Black Mountain.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:59 AM   #16
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29ers have nothing to do with how tall the rider is. It has everything to do with rolling resistance. the bigger the wheel, the easier it is to get over an object.
I think most of us here understand that, but I don't agree that it has nothing to do with the height of the rider. The 29ers I've tried out just don't feel right to me. The geometry is off. When the length of the frame is perfect, the height is off, & vice versa. This problem wouldn't occur to a rider with longer legs. Maybe height by itself has no effect on the comfort of a 29er, but I believe leg/torso ratio would.


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Why don't you drag your buddy Mr Law up here and do a little riding. I'll take you guys to Bennet Gap and Black Mountain.
I've been meaning to head up there for a while now, it's just been a hassle finding time off work. I might try to go up there sometime in the next month or so if the weather allows for some decent riding. If I get this promotion I'll be getting every other weekend off so I could leave Friday, ride Saturday & a little Sunday, then head back home Sunday afternoon. I'll have to start conditioning myself to keep up with you NC guys though.
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Old 11-18-10, 12:05 PM   #17
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I'm 6'2" and about 200lbs.

I recently demo'd a Specialized Epic Comp 29er that has a MSRP of $3000, which means you can probably pick one up for just over $2k if you go into the store on a rainy day.

I currently ride a '06 Kona HT and I have to say, the Specialized was unbelievable in comparison. On the demo ride I hit one jump that launched me 10' or so that landed in a stream-eroded rut and in the air I thought I was a gonner, but the thing just STUCK the landing. I was very, very impressed and am most definitely going with a FS and most likely a 29er. It was heavier and harder to climb on than my Kona, but I am thoroughly out of shape, so I can't really pin it on the bike. If I do go the Specialized route, I am probably going to shell out the extra money for the Epic Comp Carbon 29er.

I am also considering a Yeti but haven't test ridden one. From what I hear they're supposed to be great, so I'm looking to demo one. They're in the price range of the Epic Comp Carbon 29er, so I don't know that they'd be what you want. Plus, Yeti doesn't offer a 29er, if that's what you're after.
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Old 11-18-10, 12:12 PM   #18
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Yeti's 29" HT = Big Top
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Old 11-18-10, 12:18 PM   #19
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Oops, Yeti doesn't offer a FS 29er
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Old 11-18-10, 12:51 PM   #20
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Why don't you drag your buddy Mr Law up here and do a little riding. I'll take you guys to Bennet Gap and Black Mountain.
please sam! please! can we go?!?!
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Old 11-18-10, 06:56 PM   #21
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Get 66 to take you guys to Tsali...that place is the BEST!
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Old 11-18-10, 07:05 PM   #22
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^^ And if Sam can't decide what bike to take, ol' Johnny here'll pick one out for ya . . .

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Old 11-18-10, 08:24 PM   #23
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Get 66 to take you guys to Tsali...that place is the BEST!

I must vomit now.......
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Old 11-18-10, 09:48 PM   #24
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Naaaa, you dont want me picking a bike for sam... i would definatly bring the old Power X along for him.

But it all seriousness, all i have left right now is an Azonic DJ bike with a double crown lol (craigslist $140). And im not going to get my next bike till i move to WA. Unless your mom lets me ride her bike Thambooger?
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Old 11-18-10, 10:07 PM   #25
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If it were up to me I'd absolutely let you ride the Myka. The baby blue accents would bring out your eyes. Unfortunately, my mom barely trusts me with my stuff, let alone her's. I could sneak it off for a day & claim I'm letting Michelle A use it (ie - someone she knows won't/can't trash it) but I doubt she'd be down with a weekend loan. 66, any outfitters up there to rent a bike from that you know of?

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