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Old 10-29-04, 09:48 PM   #1
Smoothie104
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Best Hardtail for $800 or less???

33 year old 200lb Roadracer, looking for something to keep me entertained thru the winter. Some cobblestone street intervals and some rooty single track, some plain old just riding around on errands etc.

Looking for a fun bike, but I am aware that you get what you pay for. Don't plan on racing it, but you never know. I do enjoy laying the lumber while riding old or "subpar" equipment.

I'm a good wrench etc...


I've checked out Specialized, Cannondale, Gary Fisher, Trek(shudder) etc..

Tell me what you guys think and why.. Corporate brainwashing and Blind brand loyalty is OK, just tell me why..

Lets hear it.
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Old 10-29-04, 10:08 PM   #2
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Look at what Kona has to offer.
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Old 10-29-04, 10:20 PM   #3
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Talk to me about the Cinder Cone, I really like the Caldera, or the Kikapu, its a dualie, but the price is similair.....
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Old 10-29-04, 11:19 PM   #4
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The Cindercone is a really nice bike, with a good parts spec on it. It is a tough frame, will be perfect and is in your price range.
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Old 10-30-04, 01:04 AM   #5
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i agree 100%. go with a 2005 cinder cone. i have an 04 and its awesome.

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Old 10-30-04, 01:05 AM   #6
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The Cinder Cone is definitely a nice bike but looks like it'll clock in a bit above $800, but it might be worth the extra money. I got a Specialized Hardrock Pro Disc for $689 out the door. I'm pretty happy with it and the only steps down it has over the Kona is a Deore rear derailleur vs Deore LX, Marzocchi MZ Comp fork instead of an MZ Race and flat pedals instead of the m505 clipless. I'd say the Kona's worth the extra money, but it just depends on whether or not you want to go over your $800 budget.
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Old 10-30-04, 01:19 AM   #7
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I gotta go Specialized here http://www.specialized.com/SBCBkMode...jhszqy3.j27004
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Old 10-30-04, 01:46 AM   #8
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You can do either the Rockhopper Comp or Hardrock Pro Disc... The Rockhopper is a better frame, but you can get more equipment on the Hardrock. He said he's not going to be doing that much hardcore offroad trail riding.. so I'd almost suggest going with the Hardrock and getting disc brakes and saving $120.
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Old 10-30-04, 01:55 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cryogenic
You can do either the Rockhopper Comp or Hardrock Pro Disc... The Rockhopper is a better frame, but you can get more equipment on the Hardrock. He said he's not going to be doing that much hardcore offroad trail riding.. so I'd almost suggest going with the Hardrock and getting disc brakes and saving $120.
I wouldn't because the Avid BB5's aren't as good as the Avid CPS (read BB7's) I'd take the hit on the brakes to get the better drivetrain as good wheels (Rhynolites on XT disc) are $120 away and Avid Mechs (bb7's) are $70 per wheel IF the person decides they need them. V-brakes are plenty for the average Joe, except in certain situations (ie they're my size and need the extra stopping power). I'd really recommend the better drivetrain before I'd suggest "bling items" like disc brakes
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Old 10-30-04, 03:02 AM   #10
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I keep forgetting that I got lucky on my bike and ended up with BB7's instead of BB5's. The bike is SUPPOSED to come with BB5's, which don't look terribly impressive in my book. Also, my LBS sells the Rockhopper Comp Disc for $830 or so, which comes identically equipped as my Hardrock did with the exception of the better fork and derailleur. The non-disc version should be about $100 or so less than the disc version, so for about $750 it seems to be the best deal of the two. Personally after having ridden disc brakes and compared to V-brakes, I won't be going back to V-brakes anytime soon.
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Old 10-30-04, 03:05 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cryogenic
I keep forgetting that I got lucky on my bike and ended up with BB7's instead of BB5's. The bike is SUPPOSED to come with BB5's, which don't look terribly impressive in my book. Also, my LBS sells the Rockhopper Comp Disc for $830 or so, which comes identically equipped as my Hardrock did with the exception of the better fork and derailleur. The non-disc version should be about $100 or so less than the disc version, so for about $750 it seems to be the best deal of the two. Personally after having ridden disc brakes and compared to V-brakes, I won't be going back to V-brakes anytime soon.
While I COMPLETELY agree that discs are the way to go I won't sacrifice drivetrain and suspension components to get cheap disc brakes. It used to be (last year) that Avid mechs were Avid mechs there wasn't a "cheap" model
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Old 10-30-04, 03:20 AM   #12
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Given that... let's say he goes with the Rockhopper Comp, which is a great deal for the price... If it were ME, I'd spend the extra $100 and get the Comp Disc since not only does it have the Avid mechs, it also comes with the Truvativ Blaze PowerSpline crankset, which is an upgrade over the 5-D (which isn't powerspline and isn't made from 6066 aluminum). I say that's a decent upgrade for $100 and you'd spend more than that doing the same to the standard Comp.
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Old 10-30-04, 03:22 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cryogenic
Given that... let's say he goes with the Rockhopper Comp, which is a great deal for the price... If it were ME, I'd spend the extra $100 and get the Comp Disc since not only does it have the Avid mechs, it also comes with the Truvativ Blaze PowerSpline crankset, which is an upgrade over the 5-D (which isn't powerspline and isn't made from 6066 aluminum). I say that's a decent upgrade for $100 and you'd spend more than that doing the same to the standard Comp.
No arguement
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Old 10-30-04, 03:34 AM   #14
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Hindsight is always 20/20... Kinda wish I'd gone with the Rockhopper Comp Disc. I most likely could have afforded the extra $150 or so and would have ended up with a little bit nicer bike. The frames don't appear to be THAT much different, however the LX rear derailleur, Manitou Splice Comp fork and the flatter bar would have been nice. Oh well. Such is life.
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Old 10-30-04, 10:08 AM   #15
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Good info, keep it coming....
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Old 10-30-04, 10:34 AM   #16
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Definately test ride these if you can. I don't know much about the xc stuff but I do know, having helped roadies before, your body position and ours is different. Try out some different bikes and see which suits your normal position best. Both of those bikes have slight differences you will notice more than one of us might
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Old 10-30-04, 12:01 PM   #17
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I just test rode a basic rockhopper, and crashed the sh*t out of it, HAHAHAAA!

The chain was skipping across the cassette, and I was powering up over a curb downtown. BLAM!

Cool thing is, I don't have to buy it.
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Old 10-30-04, 12:32 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smoothie104
I just test rode a basic rockhopper, and crashed the sh*t out of it, HAHAHAAA!

The chain was skipping across the cassette, and I was powering up over a curb downtown. BLAM!

Cool thing is, I don't have to buy it.
They should have made sure the shifters were adjusted properly - not your fault, nor the bikes -chalk that one up to a wrench's mistake.
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Old 10-30-04, 01:38 PM   #19
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Konarider= Kona+HTs. Lol.

Anyways, I test rode the cinder cone and man they are amazing. They seem to be as solid (but aren't) as their dirt jump series, but power up fast and have amazing acceleration. The blast is okay, but next year's cinder is more expensive. I rode this year's cinder.

You don't wanna go for freeride bikes are those are usually heavier and from my point of view, sprint for a smaller amount of time than xc's. Umm, I don't know any thing about rock hoppers, but giant makes iguannas and yukons which I heard people just love. So I guess they would be good, but they are cheaper.
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Old 10-30-04, 01:41 PM   #20
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Not to mention kona's crash warranty and their 4 year frame warranty on non Out of bounds, dirt jump, downhill bikes. Those are just 1 year.

So you get this
4 years of defect-free FRAME.
Unlimited years of frame crash warranty, meaning if you ABUSE it, you get the frame for what kona pays to make their frames (About 100 CDN or ~80USD). That's not a bad deal considering defects aren't to happen as often, but abuse is.
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Old 10-30-04, 02:00 PM   #21
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I've heard from various places that Specialized has a lifetime warranty on their frames against defects. I'm not sure if that's correct, but a couple people here have mentioned it. However, I'd bet that doesn't include crash damage.
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Old 10-30-04, 02:03 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by cryogenic
I've heard from various places that Specialized has a lifetime warranty on their frames against defects. I'm not sure if that's correct, but a couple people here have mentioned it. However, I'd bet that doesn't include crash damage.
Specialized DOES have a lifetime warranty for their frames. The even went so far as to make the warranty retroactive for original owners of their bikes.
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Old 10-30-04, 03:54 PM   #23
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I think Im going to buy a KONA, but the shop I race for doesn't sell them, in fact, none of the shops in town do. Closest dealer per the KONA website is Jacksonville FLA
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Old 10-30-04, 04:15 PM   #24
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Yeah... Kona has an incredibly small network of dealers.. We used to have one here in Knoxville but they quit selling and now the closest is 50-ish miles away in Morristown, TN. Hence, I went with Specialized since we have 2 or 3 dealers here.
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Old 10-30-04, 04:20 PM   #25
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Take a look at some Jamis if the LBS carries them. I have been riding one for about a year now and was pleased with the quality of the frame , ride and components.
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