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  1. #1
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    Newb needs some advice

    Hey guys I'm between a few options as to what to ride this summer and was hoping you all could give me your 2 cents. Just to get the usual stats out of the way I'm 6ft 225# and my first season mountain biking was this past season. I'm thinking about ditching the bike I rode last season for a new one but my absolute limit is $750.

    I'm currently riding a 2001 Giant Rincon that has been slightly upgraded over the course of last season with the following:

    Rock Shox Dart 3 front shocks
    Avid BB5 Front Disc Brake (frame isn't disc compatible) w/ avid brake levers
    Shimano 8-speed shifters and 8-speed cassette
    Shimano XT FD
    Shimano XT RD
    RaceFace evolve xc stem/bars/seatpost/crankset
    Lizard skin North shore grips
    Mavic front wheel
    Maxxis Crossmark tires

    I like the bike but have the current problems, the rear wheel has a crack in it that catches the rear v brake every revolution and I REALLLLLY would love rear disc brakes, which means a new frame would be needed.

    So here are my options:

    1. Buy a new frame, probably a new Giant from Ebay and follow that with a new wheelset and transfer all the parts over to the new frame.

    2. Buy a new entry level bike such as a Hardrock or something along the 450-550 price point and exchange all the things I don't like about the bike with the ones I do like from the Rincon.

    3. Buy a bike higher in my price point 700-750ish and leave it alone and ride it. A local shop has a 2010 Gary Fisher Marlin in stock and it looks to be the best deal at just over 680.

    So any advice? I'm open to just about anything in that price point, 26 or 29 inch tires although I've never been on a 29.

    Where should I start?


    Thanks in advance and sorry for the long post.

  2. #2
    Senior Member pablosnazzy's Avatar
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    buying a bike and replacing parts you don't like comes out more expensive than just buying the bike you want, so i wouldn't go that route. the 2010 gary fisher seems like the way to go on this, put the big money into it up front, and take it from there. disc brakes are where it's at, so i would get something with disc brakes, i would stay away from v brakes if you could. as for 29er vs 26er....as a tall guy you might like the 29er more...you gotta ride them and see what feels best.

    it comes down to this: all bikes are different. test ride as many as you can and get the one that is most comfortable that you can afford. if it's out of your price range....start saving. good luck, let us know what you end up with.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the advice, what I meant when I said change the parts out on the cheaper bike was the xt FD/RD from the rincon to the new bike or the fork, etc

  4. #4
    WNCrider BurnNotice's Avatar
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    Like pablo stated.....it is always better to buy as much bike as you can possible afford up front. Where spec'ing out a bike build comes into being economical is when you can do the build yourself and have the tools of the trade and value shop. My last build I did I have almost $2200 invested. This bike if bought at a LBS would probably run you $3500. Alot of time and sweat in that build and waiting to get the primo components by searching long and hard and looking for last years closeouts.

    For a $750 budget I would look at all the LBS's around you and see what new/old models they have that fit your needs and try to get a great deal. I did that last year and got a 2009 Felt Q720 from my LBS for 25% off what it usually goes for. And of course I ended up tricking it out and now have a $1800 hardtail that was originally $900 new.

    It is a sickness. I would also sell it if someone came along with $1400 to recoup some of my loss since I mainly ride my full suspension now.

    Good luck.
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  5. #5
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    You didn't say how old your XT parts are and what 8 speed shifters you have. Older XT may be equivlent to a new Deore or STX level, so it's not like it's as good as today's XT. Without further clarification of what you have, I would go with the recommendation to spend as much as you can on a new bike, preferably a leftover like Burnnotice said.
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  6. #6
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    I can honestly tell you I have no idea how old my xt stuff is as I bought them on CL with the raceface stuff and never asked. If it helps judge the age the guy that does my bike work said the FD is made for a 9 speed chain and to expect rubbing when in certain gears. Thanks for the help so far, Thursday night I'm going to a local trek/gf store to test ride a few 29ers. They have a mamba in my price range and a cobia just a little over then might head over to a different store and test a giant talon.2.

  7. #7
    Pedals, Paddles and Poles Daspydyr's Avatar
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    The Mamba and Cobia sound tempting. Remember, shops have room to fudge. See if they will drop to where your money is.

    It sounds like you are comfortable building a bike. If you can score a good frame and rims you might be able to get something for the future and keep upgrading as time and money allows. But a build can become a money pit as mentioned. It can also be a work of art. Good luck.
    I think its disgusting and terrible how people treat Lance Armstrong, especially after winning 7 Tour de France Titles while on drugs!

    I can't even find my bike when I'm on drugs. -Willie N.

  8. #8
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    Yeah when I talked to the guy and told him my limit he said he had the Cobia, Mamba, and the X-Caliber, all the 2010 models. After looking at the prices of them new I really hope hes just looking to get them out of the store and isnt going to try and upsell me something out of my range.

    thanks for the good wishes.

  9. #9
    Fred at large
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    I'd buy a replacement frame with both brake bosses (V and disk) and swap over your parts. Then replace the parts as they wear out with new starting with the rear wheel. Get a wheel with a disk hub and has a rim that can use rim brakes.

    Get the most frame you can ride/afford.
    I am Fred, hear me slurp my Grande Mocha.

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  10. #10
    ed
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    DM-UNI

    Function/Features:
    - Retrofits ?tab-less? bikes with current disc brake systems
    - No need to buy a new bike!
    - No need to have special disc hub - fits most brands on the market
    - Very easy to install - in just a few seconds
    - Easy to put on/off your rear wheel as usual. No extra adjustments needed
    - 100% CNC machined
    - Recommended for aluminum alloy frame


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
    DM-UNI

    Function/Features:
    - Retrofits ?tab-less? bikes with current disc brake systems
    - No need to buy a new bike!
    - No need to have special disc hub - fits most brands on the market
    - Very easy to install - in just a few seconds
    - Easy to put on/off your rear wheel as usual. No extra adjustments needed
    - 100% CNC machined
    - Recommended for aluminum alloy frame

    Very interesting piece of metal, and it would be perfect but my rear wheel needs replacing anyway so that at the very least would need to be purchased. After seeing samburgers thread it opened my eyes to some affordable frames and the Kona five-0 or the FS that he had looked nice. I priced out everything id need from wheelworld.com with new hydro brakes, wheelset, fork, 9speed shifters, frame, and chain and it came out to under $750. Its got me thinking....would a new 29er be worth it over 26er build if it was with all components I wanted....

  12. #12
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    Hey sorry for the double post in my own thread but I made my decision tonight, I ended up riding a HardRock 29er, the Giant talon 2, and a few GF 29ers and ended up falling in love with a 2010 GF Mamba. The ride and the price both fit really well outside of the tiny ass seat. Thanks for the help guys.

  13. #13
    ed
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    If you're gonna spend $750 on a box of parts...just buy a Kona Five-O Deluxe for a tad more and have a complete bike that Dminor would be proud to ride.

  14. #14
    Senior Member boulder74's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aobrien View Post

    So here are my options:

    1. Buy a new frame, probably a new Giant from Ebay and follow that with a new wheelset and transfer all the parts over to the new frame.

    2. Buy a new entry level bike such as a Hardrock or something along the 450-550 price point and exchange all the things I don't like about the bike with the ones I do like from the Rincon.

    3. Buy a bike higher in my price point 700-750ish and leave it alone and ride it. A local shop has a 2010 Gary Fisher Marlin in stock and it looks to be the best deal at just over 680.

    So any advice? I'm open to just about anything in that price point, 26 or 29 inch tires although I've never been on a 29.

    Where should I start?

    Thanks in advance and sorry for the long post.

    I'd go with option #3, I had a Specialized Rock Hopper that I bought heavily used from a local college student for $150 and beat it to death over 2 years. Then I spent the $$ and got a Trek hard tail (26"er) and have been punishing that for over a decade and it keeps coming back for more.

    My point is, if you know you're going to ride it, spend a little extra and get a higher quality bike that'll stand the abuse, otherwise you'll be back shopping in a few years.

  15. #15
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    Yeah thats what I ended up doing, I walked away with a 2010 GF Mamba. I rode it and it felt very comfortable, like i wasn't ontop of it. I just have to change the seat out as the one that came on it was not made for someone with my bone structure.

  16. #16
    Senior Member boulder74's Avatar
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    I think you'll love the GF.... I test rode one last week and thought it was great, even though I ended up buying a Trek Portland :-)

  17. #17
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    I cant wait to get out on the trails...ive got the itch sooooo bad. Transfered the stem, handlebars, grips, and clipless pedals from the Giant to the GF and vice versa tonight. The bontrager stem is a lot taller then the RF one that was on there which makes that a little less comfortable to ride now, but all is good, game plan is to drop the seat down and now the girlfriend doesnt have an excuse not to go riding with me

    The Giant was completely re-lined 2 rides before I quit for the season last year so the bike needs to be adjusted a little before it gets taken out again, and Im hoping I can get the GF in the same spot soon that way I can take them both in for a quick adjustment before they hit the trails.

    Have fun riding the Portland.

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