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Old 01-24-11, 09:42 AM   #1
rawsted
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Suggestions for a solid XC/Trail bike

Hey fellas,

I'm looking to get out of my GT Aggressor and into something better. I mostly ride a road bike, but I like to get out on occasion to do some local trails (I live in North Central Florida) as well as around the southeast with an informal outdoors club. I might also take it to upstate NY this coming summer to ride a trail or two while visiting family, and I know that at least one of the aforementioned trails is fairly easy-going.

To sum up my usage case: I doubt very sincerely that I'll ever be doing anything "technical", but I'd like the capability to handle light/moderate climbs/drops without TOO much trouble (I welcome a workout). Also, I like fun/lively/responsive.

This is what I'm rolling with now:

http://www.bikepedia.com/QuickBike/B...ssor&Type=bike

My main complaints:
- It seems fairly hefty, especially for aluminum.
- The tires are too fat. When I'm riding a light trail or doing a local "urban MTB" ride, I feel like a pig (the weight probably isn't helping).
- The v-brakes provide sufficient stopping power but, as my wheels fall out of true and brakes out of adjustment, a lot of rubbing occurs and it's just flipping annoying.

So, I'm fairly certain that I want a steel hard tail with front suspension, and definitely disc brakes. I'm looking at the Voodoo Wanga since I've heard good things, especially with regard to value (I'd like to get away with this for ~$600; willing to go to ~$800 if necessary), but I really haven't looked at anything else, and I'm a little concerned about the sliding drops, though most reviewers I've seen didn't have problems.

Edit:
Also, can anyone comment on the virtues of an internal gear hub on a mountain bike?

Any insight/suggestions appreciated.

Last edited by rawsted; 01-24-11 at 10:18 AM.
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Old 01-24-11, 03:54 PM   #2
Rob P.
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The GT is an entry level bike. The components are cheap and will not take much abuse. You will continue to stay in this class of bike until you get over $600 in price.

I'd recommend a Rockhopper comp disk. It's a bit on the heavy side but it's durable and will last you.

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...3&menuItemId=0
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Old 01-24-11, 05:13 PM   #3
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The GT is an entry level bike. The components are cheap and will not take much abuse.
Yeah, this is what I've gathered, which is fine because I was entry level when I bought it, but now I feel like I'd benefit from something nicer. I'm actually leaning toward building as I'll have help from a friend at a LBS, and I was looking hard at internal gear hubs (though I know this will significantly increase the price). What are some other good framebuilders I should be look at, and what is your opinion of VooDoo? I don't mind putting the money out if I get what I'm paying for in quality - I don't care about or want to pay for a name.
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Old 01-24-11, 06:09 PM   #4
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I loved my Diamondback Response Sport for as long as I was riding the trails you've described. Still pretty heavy, but no problems with the bike. From what I've gathered, its a very good value.
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Old 01-24-11, 07:57 PM   #5
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Voo doo kicks a$$. i started with a Wanga, now i have a Bizango. that said...i would go with Trek or Specialized. They both make darn good bikes, they are quality, and you get great product for what you pay. If you want a GREAT bike, and money is no object, then spend the $5,000 and get a Turner 5 spot (it's what i mainly ride now), but that would be overkill and you don't need to do that.....yet. seriously, go to as many bike shops as possible, ride as many different bikes as you can, and see what feels most comfortable to you, and go with that one. if you plan on your majority riding in florida, i would say you don't need a full suspension. I rode all up and down the east coast on a hardtail, you won't need full suspension until you get into more techy rocky stuff. good luck, let us know what you decide on.
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Old 01-24-11, 08:00 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by rawsted View Post
Yeah, this is what I've gathered, which is fine because I was entry level when I bought it, but now I feel like I'd benefit from something nicer. I'm actually leaning toward building as I'll have help from a friend at a LBS, and I was looking hard at internal gear hubs (though I know this will significantly increase the price). What are some other good framebuilders I should be look at, and what is your opinion of VooDoo? I don't mind putting the money out if I get what I'm paying for in quality - I don't care about or want to pay for a name.
You can get a better bike by building it yourself. You WILL spend more $$$ that way, but it gets you more into the guts of the bike and you will know how to repair it whenever something breaks. If you're going to do it this way, pick a frame that is designed for the type of riding you plan to do and build it up. All the aftermarket mfg's are pretty decent. The key will be to get a frame that is designed for what you want to do with it. They are not "all the same" just because they are a bike frame.
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Old 01-25-11, 11:39 AM   #7
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+1^
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Old 01-25-11, 02:17 PM   #8
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Word, thanks fellas. I'm thinking I might as well go all out with a Wanga and build it up with an internal gear hub, and not have to buy another MTB for a very, very long time.
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Old 01-29-11, 07:03 PM   #9
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I would suggest you consider building a bike. I recently picked up a new 2007 Cannondale F1 frame on ebay for a very good price. I am building this bike for XC mainly. I'll convert the headset from 1.5 to 1 1/8. I hope to ride the Great Divide MTB Route in July 2011 for 30 days on this bike. My budget for the frame and all components is $1100. I can fit this bike with quality parts for way less than a new bike from the LBS.
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Old 02-08-11, 10:45 PM   #10
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Trek 6000 disk?
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