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$1200ish Budget for first mountainbike (Hardtail)

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$1200ish Budget for first mountainbike (Hardtail)

Old 05-04-16, 08:18 AM
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topslop1
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$1200ish Budget for first mountainbike (Hardtail)

Looking at a $1200ish dollar budget for my first hard tail mountain bike.

What would your recommendations be?

Mostly trail riding, nothing crazy downhill or super technical (yet).
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Old 05-04-16, 12:22 PM
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Air fork would be my #1 priority at that price point.
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Old 05-04-16, 12:32 PM
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Raleigh Tokul 3. $1000. $200 on a helmet (and pads if that suits your fancy.)
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Old 05-04-16, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by topslop1 View Post
Looking at a $1200ish dollar budget for my first hard tail mountain bike.
What would your recommendations be?
Mostly trail riding, nothing crazy downhill or super technical (yet).
$1200 Hard Tails are very capable and you WILL ride it harder than you think just because,,,It's a rush
SO,,,
Go out to the trails and see what people are riding, ask them why and I bet most all of them purchased from their LOCAL BIKE SHOP>>
Buy from your LOCAL BIKE SHOP If you can as you WILL need their support...

Sorry I am just not a designer bike/boutique bike person,, maybe you best not take my advice as My bike is just a tool that gets me Into the flow.
I seek only the flow~

The Flow, The Zone: flow, also known as the zone, is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, flow is characterized by complete absorption in what one does.

This has very little to do with the bike brand but do remember, red and black bikes are the fastest


Last edited by osco53; 11-29-16 at 06:32 AM.
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Old 05-04-16, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by osco53 View Post
$1200 Hard Tails are very capable and you WILL ride it harder than you think just because,,,It's a rush
SO,,,
Go out to the trails and see what people are riding, ask them why and I bet most all of them purchased from their LOCAL BIKE SHOP>>
Buy from your LOCAL BIKE SHOP If you can as you WILL need their support...

Sorry I am just not a designer bike/boutique bike person,, maybe you best not take my advice as My bike is just a tool that gets me Into the flow.
I seek only the flow~

The Flow, The Zone: flow, also known as the zone, is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, flow is characterized by complete absorption in what one does.

This has very little to do with the bike brand but do remember, red and black bikes are the fastest


Need their support for what exactly?
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Old 05-04-16, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by corrado33 View Post
Raleigh Tokul 3. $1000. $200 on a helmet (and pads if that suits your fancy.)
What are the pros on this bike?
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Old 05-04-16, 04:10 PM
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Look for an air sprung fork, tapered steerer, and through axles -it will make it easier to upgrade wheels. Unless you are small, I'd recommend 29er.

All the major brands (Trek, Specialized, Giant, Cannondale, Kona, Jamis...) have good options on that price range. If you are buying locally, see what brands are available at local shops. If you are buying online, see what's on sale. Being realistic, most of the offerings will be pretty close. Some will have a slightly better fork, some slightly better wheels or drivetrain.
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Old 05-04-16, 05:00 PM
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Trail riding with a future in technical downhill. Basically an all-around bike, right?

$1200 buys alot of hardtail. As Canker states, make sure your chosen bike is spec'd with a good fork.

What is your inclination? Do you want to race up the mountain and check on your Strava PRs every ride, then choose the best lines to go down fast? Or is your goal to just make it up there (no matter how fast/slow), and safely go down quick/careless?

I personally prefer the latter. To me, this means a 29er with slack geometry and a 120-140mm travel fork.

Here is something in that range:

Kona Honzo Bike 2014 > Bikes > Mountain Bikes | Jenson USA

I'm sure you can find better deals new or even used. But this steel (one of my favorite frame materials) Kona has hydraulic brakes, a Revelation 120mm RL (rebound adj and lockout) fork with 15mm axle, 12x142 rear axle, decent tubeless ready wheels, and a 1x10 speed drivetrain (with chainguide). Wow, if I hadn't just finished building my Transition TransAM 29 steel hardtail, I'd be all over this deal for $1299. It's the kind of bike you can confidently take to a new trail and ride down unknown super technical sections with confidence.

If you prefer the pure XC experience, then sorry, that's not my thing, and I can't help you with that. Although, when I first started mountain biking, I bought an 03 Specialized Rockhopper FSR XC (a light aluminum full suspension bike) that was twitchy, and not so good with super rock gardens (especially when riding over said rocks through a stream). It was fast climbing though... but I prefer going down than up.
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Old 05-04-16, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by topslop1 View Post
Need their support for what exactly?
Are you mechanically inclined? If yes then you don't. Youtube will show you how to do everything you need to. Anything you don't want to do you can always pay a shop to do. It isn't like they won't take your money if you don't buy from them. Sizing is more of the issue but with over 400 posts I assume you already have some bikes and know a decent amount about getting the right sized bike.

You are going to get a lot more bang for your buck online like with that Kona tk1971 posted. Downside is you won't be able to test ride it and a lot of them will be left overs and have limited sizes available.
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Old 05-05-16, 07:05 AM
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Originally Posted by tk1971 View Post
Trail riding with a future in technical downhill. Basically an all-around bike, right?

$1200 buys alot of hardtail. As Canker states, make sure your chosen bike is spec'd with a good fork.

What is your inclination? Do you want to race up the mountain and check on your Strava PRs every ride, then choose the best lines to go down fast? Or is your goal to just make it up there (no matter how fast/slow), and safely go down quick/careless?

I personally prefer the latter. To me, this means a 29er with slack geometry and a 120-140mm travel fork.

I meant the '(yet)' in my original post mostly in jest of progressing to that. I will more than likely be doing trail riding with slight elevation and descent, not primary factors or elements in the riding around here. But this won't be a dirt path that goes straight for miles and miles. Here's a sample video of what the areas look like around here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2tijxLrQzc

I'm not trying to PR with strava and at 6'1'' 215lbs I doubt I'd be anywhere close to doing so even in ridiculously good shape.

Because of my height I'm looking for a large? size?

Thanks.
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Old 05-05-16, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by topslop1 View Post
I meant the '(yet)' in my original post mostly in jest of progressing to that. I will more than likely be doing trail riding with slight elevation and descent, not primary factors or elements in the riding around here. But this won't be a dirt path that goes straight for miles and miles. Here's a sample video of what the areas look like around here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2tijxLrQzc

I'm not trying to PR with strava and at 6'1'' 215lbs I doubt I'd be anywhere close to doing so even in ridiculously good shape.

Because of my height I'm looking for a large? size?

Thanks.
The sizing chart is here:

KONA BIKES | 2016 BIKES | HONZO | Honzo AL

Just based on height and the sizing chart, you can go L or XL. But you need to go to your local bike shop Kona dealers and sit on both sizes to see which one fits better. For me, a smaller frame is more flickable and fun. But you need to get something that fits properly.

The aluminum frame version MSRPs for $1599, which means you can probably get one around your budget if you shop around. See if they have any 2015's left. The current steel Honzo (according to the Kona site) is a frame only option. Have you looked for used bikes?

I looked at the video you posted. That's some nice trail riding. Looks really fun. They were riding down some steep sections and all the leaves just hide the rocks/roots/ruts from view. I'd be a little cautious if I was riding a pure XC rig (wouldn't want to go over the bars). But I'd totally rock trail that with something like a Honzo or my Transition TransAM 29. I might even dare say that my light titanium hard tail would get bounced all over the place on this kind of trail due to the leaves hiding the technical features of the trail. I'd ride something slack and heavy (around 28-29 pounds).

One more link:
KONA BIKES | 2016 BIKES | HONZO
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Old 05-05-16, 08:07 PM
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If you're looking for something more XC, Niner EMD 9 1 Star Deore Bike > Bikes > Mountain Bikes | Jenson USA
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