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Old 07-20-06, 09:00 PM   #1
drmain
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$500 Bike Recommendation Please

I am a newbie who currently has an $80 mountain bike. I am looking to spend around $500 for a better Mountain Bike and I want to get the best possible bike for my needs in that price range. Can you suggest a specific bike for me?

My uses: Neighborhood pavement riding and trail riding as much as possible...easy to moderate trails and some fun off-roading type riding.

Thanks!
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Old 07-29-06, 10:48 PM   #2
dschl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drmain
I am a newbie who currently has an $80 mountain bike. I am looking to spend around $500 for a better Mountain Bike and I want to get the best possible bike for my needs in that price range. Can you suggest a specific bike for me?

My uses: Neighborhood pavement riding and trail riding as much as possible...easy to moderate trails and some fun off-roading type riding.

Thanks!
Try the mountain bike FAQ here on bikeforums. It answers a lot of the most common questions. read it through, as it covers bike purchases in detail in the first couple of sections. Please Read Before asking Question: MTB FAQ.

Overall, you probably want a hardtail with regular V-brakes, as decent rear suspension and disc brakes do not exist at that price point. You also don't really need suspension - I've ridden a fully rigid mountain bike for almost 20 years, and any problems I have keeping up with my co-workers are more due to them being in better shape, than from them having better bikes.

Only you can decide the best bike for your needs. It is nice to have plenty of braze-ons for bottle cages, pumps, etc, along with places to attach fenders and racks just in case you ever want them. Don't worry about the tires, they're easy and cheap to replace - focus on the fit, and then the component quality. If you don't find a seat comfortable, have the shop swap it out before your test ride - seats are not one size fits all, and there is no point writing off a good bike because of a single, easily replaced component. Try to find the previous years stock, as it often sells at a discount. Unless you already have them, don't forget to budget for accessories (also mentioned in the FAQ, although you also need tire irons if you're planning to fix flat tires).
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Old 07-29-06, 11:02 PM   #3
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then look on ebay for something a few years old...you can pick up a really decent bike on ebay or craigslist for $500...you'll be pretty happy with anything by Kona or Specialized...plus on ebay if you watch a few auctions end you can usually figure out be other peoples bids what is actually worth bidding on yourself...
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Old 07-30-06, 12:03 PM   #4
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Your need statement doesn't necessarily suggest a mountain bike. A very common newbie mistake is to buy a mtn bike when a hybrid or cyclocross bike is really called for... then when the newbie goes riding with people with faster bikes, he or she gets dropped like a bad habit, then sells the mtn bike and buys another kind of bike... and loses a lot of value in the exchange.

The key question is... what kind of surface are the trails and off-road composed of? Asphalt? Gravel? Cinders? Dirt? Mud? Sand? Wet? Dry?


Peter



Quote:
Originally Posted by drmain

My uses: Neighborhood pavement riding and trail riding as much as possible...easy to moderate trails and some fun off-roading type riding.

Thanks!
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Old 07-30-06, 06:18 PM   #5
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Check out Scott Sub 30, it might be what you are looking for.
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Old 07-31-06, 05:35 AM   #6
DiRt DeViL
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Trek 6000 series or Fisher Marlin/Wahoo.
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Old 08-03-06, 08:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kf5nd
Your need statement doesn't necessarily suggest a mountain bike. A very common newbie mistake is to buy a mtn bike when a hybrid or cyclocross bike is really called for... then when the newbie goes riding with people with faster bikes, he or she gets dropped like a bad habit, then sells the mtn bike and buys another kind of bike... and loses a lot of value in the exchange.

The key question is... what kind of surface are the trails and off-road composed of? Asphalt? Gravel? Cinders? Dirt? Mud? Sand? Wet? Dry?


Peter
+1

I have a cyclocrosser, a hybrid and an MTB. I use the cyclocrosser whenever possible, the hybrid when I need long chainstays for shopping or need fenders for rain, the MTB ... never since my cyclocrosser can go anywhere my rigid MTB can go, but faster (my MTB is heavy an old). The MTB is on it's way to becoming a snow bike. Eventually, I will get a full suspension MTB for those places I cannot reach on my CX.
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Old 08-13-06, 01:34 PM   #8
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Specialized

I would recommend the Specialized Sirrus. Just the basic model should be about $500. I was very impressed with the quality for the price. It is light and comfy too.
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Old 08-19-06, 05:06 PM   #9
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I bought a Motobecane mountain bike from ebay last year and ride as you are intending to do. It has been a great bike for me with no problems at all. Alot frown on the not so well known bikes but I have been very well pleased with my purchase. Even has disc brakes which stop you on a dime. Good luck in your search for that perfect bike as we all have different likes and opinions on all the makes and models.
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