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  1. #1
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    bike in the $300-$600 range - NEED HELP to choose

    Hi All. Great Forum. I'm in the market for a new MTB. I am getting back into biking and plan on using this bike to ride the local path/trails with my kids, commuting at times, no extreme riding, but most of the paths near me are either paved, light gravel or wood chips. Back in the mid 90's I used to ride a Trek 820 rigid fork which I liked and also had a GT MTB (can't remember the model) but it was an equivalant to the trek in price and also had a rigid fork. The variety out there is mind boggling! I plan on buying from a LBS to ensure the bike is set up correctly and I find the right size. Bikes manufacturers I like and seem to be pretty available in my area are: Trek, Gary Fisher, Specialized, Giant and Cannondale. I read alot on this forum about MTB tires vs 700c tires(I think). I'm a novice to all that, both my last two bikes had MTB tires. I'm 5'6' and 250lbs so I need a sturdy bike that can handle my weight so I don't know if that will make a difference in my choices. I know this price range is probably low-mid end of bikes, but I think it will be a good start. Are there any advantages to have a (rock shox) type fork compared to a rigid fork? I have looked on line and like some of the following:
    Trek Soho
    Trek SU2.0
    Trek 820 and others above this model within the $600 range
    Specialized Hardrock
    Gary Fisher Wahoo (Colors schemes suck for this bike)

    I know there is a lot in this email. Any info. would be appreciated. I live in the western suburba of Chicago so if anyone out there from my area has a suggestion of a really good LBS let me know, I'll throw my business there way!

    Thanks - JP

  2. #2
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Jan 2001
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    Between Lecanto and Hernando Florida, 6 miles west of the Withlacoochee Trail
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    I've had several since 1999 but have settled on my beloved 2001 Litespeed Tuscany and my latest, a 2013 Cannondale CAAD 10.
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    I'd go with the Specialized Hardrock. We see a lot of them come into the shop i work at. Not because it's a bad bike but because the owners ride them hard and the bikes need a little tlc from time to time.

    Why not post something in the Great Lakes regional subforum? You should find lots of locals who can steer you toward a good bike shop. You may also find a few folks to ride with.
    Last edited by RonH; 06-29-08 at 10:52 AM.
    My bikes --> 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2013 Cannondale CAAD 10 2 (5) "Racing Edition"

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

  3. #3
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    One thing that you should know is that a 600 dollar bike is a lot better than a 300 dollar one. It will have a better fork, wheels and components. You can buy a pretty good hard tail bike at this price from any of the major companies.

  4. #4
    Chi-Chi Monger *WildHare*'s Avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    Santa Clarita, California
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hezz View Post
    One thing that you should know is that a 600 dollar bike is a lot better than a 300 dollar one. It will have a better fork, wheels and components. You can buy a pretty good hard tail bike at this price from any of the major companies.
    Yeah, if you really don't need suspension (and it sounds as though you don't) you can pick up a decent hard tail with nicer components and lighter overall weight...
    When it's good it's really good...And when it's bad I go to pieces - David Bowie

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