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Old 10-21-04, 04:40 PM   #1
jallen
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Found a LOCAL LBS!! wow! Need opinions on Raleigh & Diamondbacks

I whined in a thread recently about how my closest LBS was about 2 hours drive...

Not true anymore, I tripped over one about 25 minutes drive!!! YAY!

Its a real hole in the wall kinda place.. He sells only Raleigh & Diamondback brands... and throws in a lifetime tuneup along with it.

I admit I know nothing about the two brands.. I have been drooling over full suspension bikes for some time now, and am presently saving up for one.

I am a XC rider, who loves to occasionally huck and drop off stuff. I ride fairly technical stuff. I am also a Clydesdale rider @ 6 foot 2 inches and 215 lean pounds. I'm still relatively new to XC, and have injuries to prove that. (Fell on my tailbone on a simple roll-down)

I am hoping to stay nearish $1,000 budget.

Bikes I have been drooling over include Specialized Stumpjumper FSR, Kona Coil dual's.... The Kona Hoss looks nice for a hardtail too

What I'm basically asking I guess, is if Raleigh and Diamondback's have similar quality for the buck, and what models might you suggest?

I noticed that they do use nice component sets on those in the shop tho.

Anyway, I am so glad to find a LBS!!!
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Old 10-21-04, 04:43 PM   #2
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I might add that I am not the kind to do BIG JUMPS... I consider anything more than 2 and half feet or so to be WAY out of my league... So I don't need a heavy heavy duty bike like those Specialized Big Hit's or anything.... I want something like a XC that can take some abuse.
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Old 10-21-04, 05:00 PM   #3
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http://www.diamondback.com/
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Old 10-21-04, 05:11 PM   #4
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I had a Raleigh M50 that I rode the crap out of for 8 months before I got my Blur. Zero problems with it the entire time, and it was a cheap bike. At the same time, my wife had a Raleigh M80 that was also a very trouble free bike (it's been sold and she rides a Specialized Epic Comp now). I've not had any experience with Diamondback, so you are on your own there. Congratulations on finding a closer LBS, now get over there and start test riding!
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Old 10-21-04, 05:18 PM   #5
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http://www.diamondback.com/items.asp...temid=128&va=0 above your price R, looks nice?

http://www.diamondback.com/items.asp...temid=131&va=0 is in the 700=1100 price range.

>Less to go wrong, and FS bikes you want a good linkage design, pivots etc..not saying a $1000 ones cheap or lousy, just if going that direction you might consider different companies.

I have an old Diamondback chromoly on the wall, it was fine, a bit heavy..didn't break anyway.
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Old 10-21-04, 10:06 PM   #6
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I did see the site, thanks... I was more or less wondering about personal experiences you all may have, most notably with the linkage design, like you said.

Diamondback XSL ELITE '05 Looks great!

I have to admit specialized's site showcasing the different linkage design really did a number in my mind about if other designs are good or not... I know it's marketing on specialized's part, and they obviously did a good job on me anyway

I'm specifically talking about this page:
http://www.specialized.com/sbc4Bar.jsp?a=b

The cool thing is XSL Elite '05 you showed looks similar to the FSR at least to me... Nice.
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Old 10-21-04, 10:15 PM   #7
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By the way.,... What's up with www.raleighusa.com and www.diamondback.com being almost exactly the same? I mean, the web design, even colors, and the interface is virtually the same.

Are they both owned by the same parent company or something?

Are they equal? I'm just wondering cause I'm pretty sure I saw one or the other (maybe both?) in X-Mart along with the Mongoose..

That cheapens the whole image IMO, even tho the higher ends may be on par with say, Trek, Specialized, etc...
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Old 10-22-04, 12:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jallen
By the way.,... What's up with www.raleighusa.com and www.diamondback.com being almost exactly the same? I mean, the web design, even colors, and the interface is virtually the same.

Are they both owned by the same parent company or something?

Are they equal? I'm just wondering cause I'm pretty sure I saw one or the other (maybe both?) in X-Mart along with the Mongoose..

That cheapens the whole image IMO, even tho the higher ends may be on par with say, Trek, Specialized, etc...
The same web designer put them together http://www.afarsitebetter.com/. Raleigh also owns Diamondback and neither of them are worth a crap in my (never so) humble opinion. The only Raleigh's I like are the OLD threes speed models like the "Robin Hood" now THERE was a bike!
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Old 10-22-04, 07:06 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raiyn
Raleigh also owns Diamondback and neither of them are worth a crap in my (never so) humble opinion. The only Raleigh's I like are the OLD threes speed models like the "Robin Hood" now THERE was a bike!
Yeah... I'm trying to shake the unfounded feeling of cheapness when I look at Raleigh/Diamondback... I don't want to just go with my knee jerk gut reaction on there, and you aren't helping any Raiyn! heh.

I'm sure they make some decent bikes... I just can't for some reason see them the same way I see brands like Cannondale, Trek, Specialized, Kona, and the likes. I am pretty sure it's because I've seen their lower ends in department stores in the past.


If I get a Raleigh or Diamondback, I'm putting on three front brakes... just in case.
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Old 10-22-04, 07:13 AM   #10
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I would test ride a lot before purchasing any of those bikes. Also test ride those other companies bikes you mentioned. I test rode a diamondback hardtail just for fun and was dissapointed - even though it was a cheaper model (400 - 500). It just didn't seem to have the smoothness of the low end models from specialized, trek, kona, etc.

DO test ride though, its really the only way to know for sure if you are going to be happy with it.
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Old 10-22-04, 07:36 AM   #11
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My LBS dropped Raleigh because he couldn't get them to respond to warranty replacement of cracked frames and couldn't get things like rear derailleur hangers. My wife and I had M600's. Good bikes. Hoever, it took six months to get a hanger. I even called them and got a run-around. Luckily, I had a spare so I could still ride.

For a thousand, I'd go with a good hard tail with a cane creek suspension seat post if you ride much at all. Off-road riding is just hard on bikes. IMO you need sealed ball/rollar bearings at all suspension pivits (except the shock pivots) instead of bushings. A decent front fork is necessary or it won't last long.

My Specialized Stumpjumper listed for $1600 and I had to replace the fork in six months. It soon wobbled too much and got slightly bent. All I do is XC and I don't do jumps. However, I do up to 24 miles on single track when I ride and I ride often and year-round.

My ride/handling improved greatly with the new fork; a Fox. Discounted, it cost half of that thousand.

Al
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Old 10-22-04, 07:53 AM   #12
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I have an older diamondback dbr x-2, and while it's a decent bike I am looking to upgrade to something more xc oriented. Another reason I am looking for a new ride is DB's customer service. It is absolutely terrible. As Al.canoe said, it is near impossible to get something as simple as a new derailleur hangar. They will not send you one from the factory if you call them, and it took them a month to get the part to the closest DB dealer around here.

I'm sure this isn't what you want to hear right now, since you just found a LBS within a reasonable driving distance, but I'd really advise you to look elsewhere if it is at all possible.
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Old 10-22-04, 08:15 AM   #13
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No no, I want to hear whatever you guys have to say good or bad. Tell the truth I wasn't sold on diamondback/raleigh's either.. I wanted justifications one way or other ,along with my own legwork so I won't feel like I'm being a judgemental snobbish sonofab...

I hope the local LBS is understanding when I show up with a new ride that isn't from his shop, needing some work.

I'm slowly but surely gatheirng all the tools and buying a couple manuals, I'm gonna have to be my own LBS out of need, methinks.
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Old 10-22-04, 08:50 AM   #14
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Good, you're definately going into this with the right mentality then. Learning how to do things by yourself is the best way in my mind. That way you won't have to be one of the people who bring their bikes in to the shop to have something simple such as derailleur adjustment. Good luck in the ride search.
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Old 10-22-04, 10:32 AM   #15
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How do I adjust my derailer?

Slowly learning.... I just ordered Zinn Mt. Bike repair book, and that Zinn cycle skills (cant remember exact title).. Looking forward to it!

I'm silly though. I ordered some Time Z's pedals for my bike, and it should arrive today. And I ordered those books from Amazon and picked supersaver shipping, and it wont be here until end of Oct or first of Nov. Silly me

I did find out last night pedals are straightforward to at least remove

My HardRock Sport is my first victi...er...patient. It got a bit messed up in my recent bail-out that I got injuried in. This is a good opportunity for me to get mechanical with it.

I do need to take it to the LBS to get my wheels trued, though.. I dont have the tools nor enteprise right now.
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Old 10-22-04, 10:38 AM   #16
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A different idea, perhaps 'advanced' is to spend on a good frame, fork and swap out the Hardrock components.
?
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Old 10-22-04, 10:40 AM   #17
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Everyone needs a first patient, this site should help get you started with basic repir stuff at least while you're waiting for your books.

PARKTOOL BIKE REPAIR HELP
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Old 10-22-04, 10:55 AM   #18
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I thought of that... But I think I am keeping the hardrock frame, its pretty awesome, its the components that are crap, it seems. I have problems with almost every one of them.

Cool park tools link, thanks!
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Old 10-22-04, 11:59 AM   #19
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Why not a fork\ component upgrade on the Hardrock? A HQ fork is around $500.


I dunno.

-do you want 2 O.K.\ good bikes or an awesome bike?

A good rear wheels $200. Fork $400, stuffs pricey, i'm always going used.

Not to tell you you should do this- but you could get a serious shift setup, HQ fork and tweak the Hardrock- And yes, frames get smushed? all that componentry comes off- onto a new bike. I'm riding parts now that are intended for my next frame.

I'm really more interested in frameworks as that is the real structure of the ride.
Meaning- you like the Hardrock? Tweak it, ride it, break it, build a new bike from the corpses components.
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Old 10-22-04, 12:12 PM   #20
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That's a very good plan.. I will probably go with that plan

HQ= High Quality, right?

Yeah, those are expensive numbers when they're broken down.. when you buy "a bike" you dont really know what cost what, so you dont notice. but when it gets broken down to 500 bucks for a fork.. EEK! hehe

But its broken down into managable chunks...

I'm thinking of maybe 2 good bikes, or 1 good 1 awesome bike. Probably end up with 2 good bikes, and getting an awesome duallie in a year or two. This stuff is an inve$tment up front! Tools, parts and what not.

I guess after you do this for a while, it evens out.... somewhat.. anyway as long as you dont break your high ticket items hehe
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Old 10-22-04, 02:28 PM   #21
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You could do something like what I did with my two bikes.
My Rockhopper FSR
And
My Hardrock
I had done some minor upgrades to the Hardrock over the years until I got the Rockhopper. Once I got that I upgraded the crap out of the Rockhopper and used the newer stock components from that bike to upgrade my Hardrock. I'm pretty pleased with the results.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:46 PM   #22
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Well it seems to me that the front shock comes off most floor models pretty quick.

At $1000 distributed through an entire bike (factor the fact the retailer gets some 2-300$) $700 is not going to get you a super disc brake, or a hydraulic front suspension.

A nice shift, brake set up makes so much difference to the feel of a bike. Also if you don't wreck it, you can put on a different frame later.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:54 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeff williams
Well it seems to me that the front shock comes off most floor models pretty quick.

At $1000 distributed through an entire bike (factor the fact the retailer gets some 2-300$) $700 is not going to get you a super disc brake, or a hydraulic front suspension.

A nice shift, brake set up makes so much difference to the feel of a bike. Also if you don't wreck it, you can put on a different frame later.
All very true points. Most people will swap the fork out very quickly after buying a bike at this price point, soon to be followed by drivetrain components. Much of this has to do with the fact that the model they bought usually shares a frame with a bike they really want but is out of their immediate price range.
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Old 10-22-04, 03:23 PM   #24
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First thing is drivetrain.. I thnk... The chain keeps doing crazy stuff and shifting randomily.. I dont know enough to fix it myself, but I have manuals coming and I am a quick learner. If I can fix it so it shifts better, then I may hang onto it longer and start eyeing the fork instead.

This thread has inspired me a lot, thanks guys, if you have more thoughts, keep them coming!

Love your bikes, Raiyn! What you did to your hardrock is EXACTLY what I want to do to it when I get a better bike, change it to an urban assault vechile, all pavement and stil be able to hop stuff. I think I would destroy a road bike in no time, why I would never get a nice road bike. I've never riden one anyway before.

When did Hardrock stop coming in steel? I used to have a 1993 (4?) hardrock.. I miss it so dearly. That was an awesome bike, all decked out with commuter gear.. It got stolen.

My current one is AL.. Hardrock sport 04, its pretty nice.
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Old 10-22-04, 03:25 PM   #25
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By the way, i think its about time to change my sig which currently is:
"I ride my specialized hardrock sport 2004 way too hard, I should have saved up for something a bit beefier....."

hehe
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